Thales Finds Confidence in Hybrid Security Challenges are Improving

With the result in a permanently altered working environment, changes in security were necessary and notable. Controlling access to applications, data and systems is an important aspect of securing any environment and protecting it against internal and external threats.

After two years of the pandemic, confidence in addressing certain security risks and threats arising from hybrid and remote work has improved among businesses and organizations worldwide. When it comes to secure access to applications, data and systems, 84 percent of IT professionals this year said they have some degree of confidence in their current user access security systems to enable remote work securely and easily, compared to 56 percent in 2021. In addition, 60 percent said they were highly confident compared to just 22 percent last year.

These are among some of the key findings from the 2022 Thales Access Management Index, a global survey of 2,600 IT decision makers, conducted by 451 Research, part of S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Overall, the report findings suggest firms remain concerned about the security risks of remote work, but the concerns seem to be less severe. At the same time, firms are growing more confident in the ability of authentication and access management systems to manage those risks.

Only 31 percent of IT professionals surveyed reported having “very high” concerns about the security risks and threats of remote work in 2022, down from 39 percent in 2021, while those who said they were “somewhat concerned” – the most popular response – increased from 43 percent to 48 percent in 2022.

While multi-factor authentication (MFA) usage remains most prevalent for remote workers (68 percent) and privileged users (52 percent), the report shows MFA adoption is on the rise for internal and non-IT staff with MFA adoption increasing to 40 percent compared to 34 percent in 2021. However, widespread MFA adoption by businesses is still yet to be the norm with just over half (56 percent) have adopted MFA in their organizations.

The survey inquired about direct impacts the pandemic and remote work had on deployment plans for new access security technologies. Responses revealed a six-percentage-point global increase in plans to deploy stand-alone MFA, up from 31 percent in 2021. The pandemic also affected plans to deploy cloud-based access management, selected by 45 percent of respondents worldwide compared to 41 percent in 2021.

These two increases illustrate respondents’ growing awareness that threats come from all angles, and that proper authentication and management of access and privileges is necessary for an adequate security foundation. Last year, Zero Trust Network Access/Software-Defined Perimeter (ZTNA)/(SDP) was the top choice, selected by 44 percent of respondents. In 2022, ZTNA was the second choice at 42 percent.

For information, contact Thales Group