ECONOMY

Companies’ mobile IT networks require more protective measures

More than 60 percent of companies avoid the extensive adoption of mobile and remote computing networks due to concerns about the security of information technology systems, a global survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), supported by Symantec Corp, has found. Security concerns are therefore the greatest obstacle to the proliferation of such systems, with companies worrying about the safety of their own structure. Out of the firms surveyed, 47 percent also consider the cost and the complexity of such technologies too much of a hindrance to adopting them. One in five firms has already faced financial losses due to network assaults that took advantage of wireless technologies for transmitting data. The EIU survey focuses on the serious flaws in the existing security mechanisms of companies regarding the protection of mobile appliances. While 82 percent of firms worldwide believe their losses originating from virus attacks are the same or greater in a wireless network, only 26 percent have substantially assessed the security risks of smart phones, compared with 81 percent of enterprises which conduct security tests on portable computers. Despite companies’ widespread use of mobile appliances, only 9 percent have incorporated an integrated security plan to cover the use of portable appliances as well. Another 10 percent have not adopted any measures on issues concerning mobile appliance security, 39 percent provide access to the corporate network through employees’ mobile appliances and another 39 percent incorporates its own portable appliances into its existing security architecture covering the fixed network. «It is good for companies to gain experience in using mobile technologies and the technologies required for the security of their infrastructures, before they are forced to do it as a result of a serious attack,» said Athanassios Vavatsikos, general director of Symantec in Greece. «In today’s companies, multiple points should be covered and the right protection is impossible if applying one solution to all needs. While most companies are aware of the risks of mobile technologies, they continue without the right measures and security policies to be protected from any threats,» he added. The survey examined the companies’ readiness to respond to any security threats, and results varied by region: In Europe 55 percent of firms have already utilized technologies for their protection, against 44 percent in Asia and just 36 percent in North America. Broadband access points More than 340 firms in Greece are subsidized, developing over 700 points of wireless access in broadband Internet, the special secretary for Information Society, Vassilios Assimakopoulos, said. Most firms are in the tourism and catering sector, with hotels interconnecting their buildings, providing rapid transfer of data, image and voice.