Remote working is leading to a rise in data breaches

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As remote working grows in popularity so to do the security risks with new research from CybSafe revealing that a third of UK businesses have suffered a data breach because of remote working in the last 12 months.

The concept of remote working has grown significantly over the last 10 years as businesses look to boost productivity, reduce costs, improve employee well-being and gain access to a wider range of talent.

CybSafe surveyed business decision-makers to discover that 80 per cent of UK businesses have seen a rise in remote working during the last two years.

Despite the growth of remote working in the UK, businesses are not doing enough to adapt and improve their security practices and policies. A quarter of those surveyed said their organisations had not implemented basic security precautions such as installing antivirus software and 30 per cent do not have any measures in place to restrict access to sensitive files.

Threat of data breaches

CEO and Founder of CybSafe OZ Alashe explained that businesses must put more effort into training their remote workers to avoid falling victim to a data breach, saying:

“While remote working has the potential to be hugely beneficial to businesses, the threat of related data breaches is being seriously underestimated. Most business leaders assume that their people know how to work safely when working remotely - but the number of data breaches caused by staff working remotely and the lack of training indicates that this isn’t the case. Given that remote working is likely to increase in popularity year on year, this is a problem that’s only going to get worse if businesses refuse to take action.” 

CybSafe's research also suggests that most decision-makers are overconfident when it comes to remote working with three quarters of respondents believing that each and every employee understands how to safely work remotely. However, only 50 per cent have provided training to their staff in the last 12 months.

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Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.