SOURCE: Websense, Inc.

Websense, Inc.

June 09, 2009 06:00 ET

New Websense Research Exposes Significant Security Risks in UK Companies

Websense Study Reveals That Only 12% of IT Managers Are Aware of the Dangers Posed by Web 2.0

READING, UK--(Marketwire - June 9, 2009) - Websense, Inc. (NASDAQ: WBSN) today announced the UK findings of an independent survey into the rise of Web 2.0 use in businesses as part of its Web2.0@Work™ global research project. The UK results highlight that although Web 2.0 tools are pervasive in the workplace, many organisations are at risk from security breaches because they are ill equipped to protect themselves from Web 2.0 threats. The study, which was conducted by independent research firm Dynamic Markets on behalf of security specialists Websense®, revealed that there is a significant gap between the areas of the Web that IT managers believe to hold the most security threats compared to the reality. In fact, only 12% of IT managers in the UK believe that the 'dynamic' Web (the top 100 most popular sites) holds the most Web security threats when in reality, according to research from Websense Security Labs 70% of the top 100 most popular Web sites have hosted or directed users to malicious code, phishing, or fraud.

More than a third (37%) of those surveyed admit that employees at their organisation have tried to bypass IT security policies to access Web 2.0 Web sites. This is despite the fact that 82% of respondents reported confidence in their organisation's Web 2.0 security. Furthermore, when asked to clarify how their businesses are equipped to protect themselves from Web 2.0 threats, only 43% have tools in place to prevent company confidential data from being uploaded onto the Web and only 36% have tools that provide real-time analysis of Web site content. Shockingly, 9% of IT managers aren't even sure of their own IT security policies.

Unsurprisingly, Web 2.0 tools and applications are already pervasive in the workplace and more than half (57%) of IT managers believe that Web 2.0 is necessary to their business. Whilst a high percentage of businesses in the UK allow access to email services such as Hotmail and Gmail (70%) and wikis (70%), only 43% allow access to hosted business software such as Salesforce.com. The survey also highlights that three quarters (75%) of IT managers feel pressured to allow more access to Web 2.0 sites. This pressure is coming from all areas of the business including C-level and director level staff. As the Web 2.0 landscape is continuing to evolve and cloud computing becomes an attractive solution for enterprises, IT departments are facing increasing pressure to strike a balance between preventing security risks whilst also allowing staff to access these business enhancing tools in a safe and secure way.

Mark Murtagh, technical director at Websense said of the findings: "As more employees access Web 2.0 tools and applications to enhance their productivity at work, IT departments are currently facing a dilemma. They don't want to restrict access to these tools yet they are finding it difficult to establish the appropriate Web 2.0 usage policies and offer guidance to their staff. To that end, Websense has introduced best practice guidelines to help IT professionals safely harness the power of Web 2.0 within their organisations. Through offering Web 2.0 early threat detection and protection technology, Websense is helping businesses say 'Yes' to Web 2.0 technology."

To register for a free analyst report and a June 10 webcast on best practices for Web 2.0 at work visit www.websense.com/Web2.0atWork. The global 2009 Web2.0@Work survey results are also available on the site. Additionally, Websense has launched the "Web2.0@Work - Powered by Websense" page on Facebook as an interactive community for employees, employers and IT professionals to discuss the benefits and risks associated with Web 2.0, share stories of their organisation's successful use of Web 2.0 and to read additional research on the topic.

Full details on the survey methodology can also be found in the report "Web2.0@Work" on www.websense.com/Web2.0atWork.

A summary of the key UK results are as follows:

--  12% of IT managers in the UK believe that the 'dynamic' Web (the top
    100 most popular sites) holds the most Web security threats
--  90% of the top 10 most popular Web sites have hosted or directed users
    to malicious code, phishing, or fraud
--  37% of IT managers in the UK admit that employees at their
    organisation have tried to bypass IT security policies to access Web 2.0
    Web sites
--  82% of respondents have confidence in their organisations Web 2.0
    security
--  43% have tools in place to prevent company confidential data from
    being uploaded onto the Web
--  36% have tools that provide real time analysis of Web site content
--  9% of IT managers aren't sure of their own IT security policies
--  57% believe that Web 2.0 is necessary to their business
--  70% allow access to email services such as Hotmail and Gmail, as well
    as wikis (70%)
--  43% allow access to hosted business software such as Salesforce.com
--  75% of IT managers feel under pressure to allow more access to Web 2.0
    sites
    

About Websense, Inc.

Websense, Inc. (NASDAQ: WBSN), a global leader in integrated Web, data and email security solutions, provides Essential Information Protection™ for more than 44 million product seats under subscription. Distributed through its global network of channel partners, Websense software and hosted security solutions help organisations block malicious code, prevent the loss of confidential information and enforce Internet use and security policies. For more information, visit www.websense.com.

Websense is a registered trademark of Websense, Inc. in the United States and certain international markets. Websense has numerous other registered and unregistered trademarks in the United States and internationally. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Contact Information

  • For more information, please contact:

    Becca Daniel or Chrissie McGoldrick
    Mi liberty Ltd
    P: +44 20 7751 4444
    E: websense@miliberty.com