Companies work hard to find, hire and retain good people. As a workforce, we humans by and large are good workers who care about the work we do and the companies we work for. But, as humans, we are all fallible! It is the nature of life that we make mistakes! When it comes to IT and data security, innocent mistakes can lead to a significant tragedy; in the extreme, it can lead to the bankrupting of a company.
Most businesses – and people for that matter – worry far more about getting viruses, malware and/or phishing emails than they do about Joe or Jennifer who may be sloppy with user names and passwords, or who may leave their data-laden, unprotected computer in a cab in NYC. Of course, let’s not forget that most often the way into a company’s computing environment for viruses, malware and phishing emails is Joe or Jennifer’s device.
They don’t want to screw up. They aren’t IT security experts, and if the company fails to protect Joe and Jennifer from themselves, it is shame on the company! Right now, our blog is focusing a lot on security in the cloud. In fact, we have written both a white page and an infographic on securing your environment in the cloud. The cloud will protect your company’s data far more than any home-grown, on-prem environment. But, first, let’s look at the cost of that laptop that was left in a New York City cab.
The Ponemon Institute Study, “The Cost of a Lost Laptop”
Often, SMBs undervalue the true cost of a lost laptop: It’s just a laptop, we can buy another one. But, the cost of that laptop is peanuts in comparison to the cost of the data itself. The Ponemon Institute conducted a study, “The Cost of a Lost Laptop,” in order to determine just what a misplaced computer could potentially cost a business after all was said and done. In conducting the study, Ponemon took the following seven cost components into account: replacement costs, detection, forensics, data breach, lost intellectual property costs, lost productivity and legal, and consulting and regulatory expenses.
Their study accounted for what it would cost to get another of the same device for the employee, the work involved with detecting the loss in the first place, searching for it, the potential expenses involved with a data breach (including loss of property and legal expenses), and any follow up that would concern consulting and regulatory parties.
The final cost? Before we get to that, consider the original cost of the laptop, for perspective, was $1,500. In the end? A lost laptop could cost up to $49,246! What’s more, 80% of that is made up of costs associated with data breaches. If that device was nothing more than the employee’s portal to the cloud, the total cost would be $1500, and no one would have access to the data – ever!
Employees have the greatest potential for error. Firewalls, anti-malware and other types of security software are generally very well designed and deployed, which means they’re very good at doing their job. But if an employee decides to turn off auto-updates to that software, because they find it annoying? There’s your security threat. The same goes for how employees may not follow best practices for password management or may forget a company device in a taxi.
If the company doesn’t have IT that’s sophisticated enough to really protect against the threat, they are just hanging themselves out there to pay a ransomware fee. You’d be surprised at the types of companie finding themselves paying ransomware … companies who employ large IT staffs!
All of this goes to show why it’s so important to come into the cloud. The cloud provides numerous fail-safe systems and best practices, all that help ensures your staff’s whoops won’t bring your company down. We call it, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective EUC Environment Security…in the cloud.
Even today, many people still want to believe that on-prem is the safest way. Taking just one nugget from our white paper, consider the economies of scale when comparing an on-prem solution provided by even a big SMB vs what a highly experienced cloud services provider can invest. When it comes to IT security, no matter what, money equals better security. And, there is just no comparison between what you can spend when you are keeping 10s of thousands of end users safe, vs 300. Next week, we will be discussing in detail the economies of scale for providing IT security.
For now, don’t forget to check out our white paper and infographic on security…then, reach out to us as we will make your EUC environment far more secure.