Company data breaches regularly make the headlines, putting customers at risk and incurring reputational damage. Over the last year we have seen some of the highest-profile data breaches in history. Whilst these targets are all large, established companies, it’s important to remember that data breaches can affect businesses of all sizes – whether they are large, medium or small. Many businesses, unaware that they could become a target, fail to plan for a potential data breach – and when they are attacked, the results can be catastrophic. Fines into the millions, bans on data processing, reputational damage and loss of customer confidence and trust are just a few of the potential consequences.
With the majority of the global population having shifted to working from home over the last year and businesses having rapidly transitioned to remote operations, cybercriminals have pivoted and exploited the COVID-19 pandemic to carry out highly advanced cyberattacks. In fact, according to a global survey released by VMware Carbon Black, 91% of enterprises reported an increase in cyberattacks with more employees working from home amid the coronavirus outbreak. This has led to increased pressure on IT teams – both internal and external – to keep on top of latest technology developments and ensure that cybersecurity hygiene is as strong as possible.
Shadow IT risk increases as remote working continues
According to Snow Software’s ‘2021 IT Priorities Report’, 41% of workers said general access to technologies has improved, but IT leaders may overestimate the ease at which teams are able to procure applications, cloud resources, and software. As a result, this could provide an opening for shadow IT, with employees bringing in solutions to help modernise and improve productivity without considering potential risks and consequences. Shadow IT is becoming a huge problem for companies because remote working has caused massive growth in the number of uncontrolled bring-your-own-devices (BYOD) and cloud apps, which are typically owned and managed by non-technical staff. In addition, this opens new entry points to accessing critical systems – access points which aren’t governed by corporate regulations or strong password guidance, and which cybercriminals can therefore exploit.
Bridging the gap between employees and IT
Whilst shadow IT can seemingly help to enhance efficiency, it also subjects users and organisations to heightened risks of data breaches and non-compliance issues. This is where low-code platforms can help, as they can be scaled up without the need to hire developers to meet demand, consequently reducing operational costs such as maintenance and support. In fact, the Forrester WaveTM: Low-Code Development Platforms For AD&D Pros, Q1 2019 report highlights that digital businesses’ demand for the latest software is the biggest driver of low-code adoption.
No room for error
At a time where cyberattacks are on the rise, providing businesses and employees with a range of easy-to-use and scalable tools will be pivotal as we head into 2021. The myth that low-code is only useful for simplistic apps has long since been dispelled. Enterprises need to better understand its power to create effective tools, as well as foster alignment between IT and business. Providing employees with more effective tools can help significantly reduce the security risk of shadow IT whilst increasing employee productivity. Now businesses have adapted to everything 2020 threw at them, the importance of good cybersecurity hygiene cannot be ignored in 2021 and beyond.