Monday, May 27, 2024

Users Still Giving IT Nightmares

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Network administrators are becoming more comfortable with the level of

security at their businesses, but they’re still worried about the havoc

users bring down on their systems.

Forty percent of network administrators say their biggest concern is that

their users ‘fail to adhere to company security policies’, according to a

new survey by Amplitude Research, based in Bingham Farms, Mich., and

commissioned by VanDyke Software Inc., an Internet communications

software company based in Albuquerque, N.M.

Even though many network administrators and managers distrust users,

only 50 percent say they are comfortable with monitoring employee usage

of the Internet. The survey also shows that rules-based software, server

log analytics, and dedicated monitoring applications are the most widely

used solutions, with few respondents saying they use keystroke loggers.

Behind their worries over user actions, administrators ranked their top

concerns as a security breach to their network, the lack of a recovery

plan, and viruses and worms.

”The human element continues to be a primary cause for concern to

network administrators,” says Jeff P. VanDyke, president of VanDyke

Software. ”We hear about individuals who have been burned by phishing

scams, an employee who leaves his or her laptop at an airport, or

on-the-go professionals who log on to the Internet via a

less-than-secure-but-available wireless network.

”What this year’s survey responses indicate are that network

administrators and managers feel they’re comfortable with their

performance in managing technology and solutions to protect their

networks and data. It also appears that they generally have neither the

mandate from top management nor sufficient budgets to train employees in

proper security awareness and practices.”

Despite their concerns about users, worms and break-ins, when asked what

keeps them up at night, 43 percent of network administrators surveyed say

they sleep like a baby.

Survey respondents generally expressed satisfaction with the current

security at their organization in areas like desktop PCs, remote access,

and physical security. Data centers/server farms, however, scored the

highest level of satisfaction with more than 70 percent of administrators

saying they are content with its security.

In addressing their organization’s information security issues, 88

percent of network administrators say they use internal staff and

resources; 10 percent say they employ a security consultant to advise and

assist internal staff, and 2 percent say they outsource to a managed

service provider or consulting firm.

The study surveyed 335 network/systems administrators and networking


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