Organisations should look to investing in cyber security training and awareness in the new normal, say experts

LN Revathy Coimbatore | Updated on September 12, 2020

The on-going shift to remote work will require more than just technology; cyber security training and awareness should remain key priorities, say tech-experts.

Conceding that the sudden shift to telework, practically overnight, had been a major challenge for more than 80 per cent of the organisations worldwide, particularly during the first half of 2020, experts pointed out that in addition to evolving remote work environment, increased reliance on personal device usage and overall influx of workers outside the corporate network, organisations had to protect the network from opportunistic phishers to scheming nation-state actors.

Threat Landscape Report

A recent FortiGuard Labs Global Threat Landscape Report revealed that 60 per cent of the organisations had reported an increase in cyber security breach attempts, while 34 per cent – of actual breaches in their networks.


And this was despite their investments in key technologies. Nearly 50 per cent of the enterprises surveyed had upped their investments in VPN and cloud security, while 40 per cent in upskilling IT professionals or Network Access Control (NAC).

“Organizations need to carefully consider what technologies and approaches are needed to secure their telework strategies over the long-term and address the on-going cyber skills gap” said Rajesh Maurya, Regional Vice President, India & SAARC, at Fortinet.

“A majority of the enterprises surveyed had indicated that they would be investing more to secure the telework over the next two years; some are planning to add new technologies not previously in place.”


Room for improvement

The Fortinet report, while stating that there is room for improvement, urges organisations to carefully study the technologies and approaches needed to secure telework and defense strategies for extension of the network perimeter into the home.

Some of the areas that could be considered for improving secure remote connectivity include Multi-factor Authentication, end-point security and NAC, Software-defined Wide-area Networking (SD-WAN) for the Home, Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) and skilled security professionals.

The report noted that at the start of the pandemic only 55 per cent of the organisations had enough skilled IT workers in place to support the shift to remote work.

“While organisations have taken cognisance to the need for investing further in skilled IT workers, the historical lack of skilled IT security professionals could be a challenge,” say experts.

A look at technology adoption and investments show that SD-WAN has topped in adoption over the past two years as organisations moved their business critical applications to the cloud

And as digital transformation and cloud adoption continue to accelerate, SD-WAN adoption rates are estimated to grow at a compounded annual rate of 58 per cent over the next six years.

SD-WAN, and the latest entrant to the digital innovation portfolio, SASE are revolutionizing how and where organizations and users conduct business, the Fortinet expert said and stressed the need for deploying the solutions in the right way as per the needs of the different users, levels of access and connectivity.

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Published on September 12, 2020
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