Negligence while working from home endangers corporate IT

Even months after the beginning of the Corona Pandemic, mobile working is still a major gateway for fraudsters or cyber criminals, warns the Gesamtverband der Deutschen Versicherungswirtschaft (GDV) in a current study. Main reason: Almost two out of three employees carry out professional tasks not only with devices of their employer, but also with private hardware. //next has looked at the study.

Geschäftsmann mit Smartphone und Laptop auf Sofa im Café

"Private devices and e-mail accounts are generally less well protected than corporate IT. As a result, companies lose control over their IT security and thus the security of their data," warns Peter Graß, GDV expert for cyber security. It also makes life easier for fraudsters. Specifically, 

  • almost 60 percent of home office employees perform professional tasks with private laptops, tablets or smartphones, 
  • ten percent of the more than 2,000 people surveyed in November send business e-mails from their private address and
  • 2 percent also use WhatsApp for business communications. 

Such deficits are not only found in smaller companies. "Even many employees of medium-sized and large companies use their private mail account or messenger services," reports Graß.


The expert finds it understandable that with the unplanned, abrupt change to mobile work in the first lockdown, many security routines were lost for the time being. However: "Those who have not yet adapted their processes to the new situation are acting negligently. 

According to the study, too many companies have not yet sufficiently adapted their rules on IT security, data protection and compliance to mobile working: 

  • Only every fifth respondent reports additional security measures. 
  • For five percent of the employees surveyed, security measures have been dropped in the home office, in other companies they are ignored. 
  • 14 percent say that they cannot fully follow compliance and security rules in the home office and therefore handle them "flexibly".

Further details and exciting graphics on the studies are available here (German only. Whether home offices could become the new standard workplace, //next has tried to answer here.

Text: Ingo Schenk

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