Security budgets wasted on remote working, IT managers say

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Keeping employees connected and secure while working from home (opens in new tab) has proven to be a costly endeavor for organizations according to a new survey from JumpCloud (opens in new tab).

To compile its new 2021 State of the SME IT Admin Report (opens in new tab), the cloud computing (opens in new tab) company surveyed 401 IT decision makers at SMEs across a variety of industries back in April of this year.

When it came to their organization's security budgets during the pandemic, 60 percent of respondents said their companies overpaid for identity management software (opens in new tab) while 56 percent said that too much money was spent enabling their employees to work remotely.

JumpCloud CEO Rajat Bhargava explained in a press release (opens in new tab) how IT admins played a critical role when it came to making it possible for employees at their organizations to work from home, saying:

“COVID-19 has highlighted that while IT admins are often behind the scenes, they are the team that ensures secure and simple workflows for every employee in SMEs. Remote work put enormous pressure on admins and organizations, and now that the work landscape has changed permanently, the top priority for SMEs is to address those challenges. IT professionals’ 2021 priorities of layered security for more secure work-from-anywhere, making remote work easier, and more efficient device management underscore the need for a more consolidated, platform-based approach to IT that reduces complexities and cost.”

Impact of remote work

In the coming year as part of the transition to hybrid working (opens in new tab), IT budgets will prioritize remote management (58.4%), security (55.9%) and cloud services (50.1%). One of the main reasons for this is due to the fact that 74 percent of the IT admins surveyed by JumpCloud said that remote work made it more difficult for employees to follow best practices when it came to security.

Respondents also listed software vulnerabilities (39%), credential reuse across apps and online services (37%), unsecured home networks (36%) and device theft (29%) as their top security concerns. While using a password manager (opens in new tab) can help with credential reuse, nearly a quarter (24%) of organizations have adopted a zero trust (opens in new tab) approach to security and 33 percent of SMEs plan to adopt one going forward.

Although supporting remote work over the past year has been expensive for organizations worldwide, they are now in a much better position to allow employees to work from home some days and from the office on others. 

Before the pandemic, remote work was considered a perk that some companies offered but now employees are prepared to work from anywhere which will continue to pose a challenge to IT admins as their organizations begin implementing hybrid working models.

Via ZDNet (opens in new tab)

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.