Many employees bypass security policy in order to do their job: report

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2 out of 5 employees ignore IT policy.

Almost half of employees break security policies to meet their needs, but claim that they are simply trying to be more productive and efficient.

According to the Cisco connected world report, 41 per cent of those surveyed said they go against IT policy because they need restricted programs and applications to get their job done.

Indeed, Clearswift CEO Richard Turner recently claimed that there was a need to bring "IT security out of the shadows and educate employees on the risks and the protection in place".

Clearswift's research found that one in seven people fear they may currently be inadvertently breaching corporate policy, while one in four of those surveyed felt that their company ‘could be better' at communicating guidelines.

The Cisco research reflected this, finding that while most companies have IT policies (82 per cent), about one in four employees are unaware that they exist. Amongst those asked globally, 32 per cent of employees said that the policy was only communicated to them per year and ten per cent said that the policy had never been communicated to them.

Also, for those employees who have an IT policy, 35 per cent said IT does not provide an explanation or rationale for why it exists, which can result in apathy, misunderstanding and selective compliance. One in five of employees worldwide said they break IT policy because they believe their company or IT team will not enforce it.

Marie Hattar, vice president of Borderless Networks at Cisco, said: “With the expansion of diverse devices in the workplace, along with the growth of video as a favoured mode of communication, IT organisations are facing many policy and management demands on their networking infrastructure.

“Employees are now expecting to be connected anywhere, anytime, with any device and any information in their work and personal lives. Companies clearly need to address this disconnect between IT policies and workers to avoid IT policies becoming irrelevant and employees breaking them with increasing regularity.”

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