CISCO: Gen Y pose threat to corporate security

CISCO discovered that, contrary to the popular belief that most online security risks are derived from people visiting pornography, pharmaceutical and gambling sites, most threats target legitimate sites – such as major search engines, retail outlets and social media sites. In the recent CISCO 2013 Annual Security Report, CISCO found that online shopping sites are 21 times as likely to threaten user security than a counterfeit software site and advertisements are 182 times as likely to deliver malicious content than pornography sites.

Some highlights of the Report:

  • Android malware grows 2577% over 2012; mobile only makes up 0.5% of total web malware encounters.
  • Online advertisements are 182 times more likely to deliver malicious content than pornographic sites.
  • Global spam volumes are down 18% overall, with spammers keeping banker’s hours for a 25% drop over the weekend.
  • Global visibility into where malware and spam encounters occur and much more

Security risks rise in businesses because many employees adopt “my way” work lifestyles in which their devices, work and online behavior mix with their personal lives virtually anywhere – in the office, at home and everywhere in between. The business security implications of this “consumerization” trend are magnified by a second set of findings from the Cisco Connected World Technology Report (CCWTR), which provides insight into the attitudes of the world’s next generation of workers, Generation Y.

The Cisco study surveyed Generation Y college students and IT workers between the ages of 18 and 30 in various industries. Both categories included hundreds of respondents from 18 countries (Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, United Kingdom and United States), making a total of 3,600 respondents.

According to Adam Philpott, director of EMEAR security sales for Cisco, these “millennials” are now entering the workplace and sport a very different attitude towards data privacy. “They believe in the demise of privacy — that it’s simply defunct in practice, and it’s in this paradigm that organisations must operate a concept that will be alarming to the older generation in the workplace,” he said.

The CCWTR discusses the idea that Generation Y employees will test corporate cultures and policies because they expect social media freedom, device choice and mobile lifestyles.

In fact, two-thirds of the respondents disagreed with the idea of employers being allowed to track employee’s online activity on company devices.

The report also revealed that 90 per cent of the surveyed professionals said they have a policy regarding the use of certain devices at work, but just 40 per cent of Generation Y respondents were aware of it. Furthermore, of this 40 per cent, 80 per cent said they do not follow these policies.

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One thought on “CISCO: Gen Y pose threat to corporate security

  1. BYOD has become the norm as ppl are more attached to their devices these days. Hence, any restriction on its use is considered a loss of freedom, any oversight is taken as breach of privacy. The whole concept of security will undergo a drastic change in the near future for sure.

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