Shift to remote work sees major increase in cybercrime

The shift to hybrid or remote working practices has resulted in a marked increase in vulnerability for companies protecting themselves from cyberattacks, the Verizon Mobile Security Index (MSI) 2022 has found.

Cyberattacks in the last year involving a mobile/IoT device were up 22% year-over-year, with 85% of companies surveyed stating that they now have a budget dedicated to mobile security.

Security teams face an uphill battle as the number of devices and remote workers increase, so much so that 79% of respondents agreed that the recent changes to working practices have adversely affected their organizations’ cybersecurity. With the increased threat, Verizon argues that companies should double down on their policies, but says that the findings point to the opposite: 85% of respondents say that home Wi-Fi and cellular networks/hotspots are allowed or there is no policy against them, and 68% allow or have no policy against the use of public Wi-Fi.

The MSI details four sectors of the mobile threat landscape: people and behaviors, apps, devices and things, and networks and cloud. Additionally, it provides expert insights into how to help safeguard against pending cybercrime attacks, such as establishing a “zero trust network access” (ZTNA) model and a secure access service edge (SASE) architecture, which are designed for a mobile-first and cloud-first world.

“For businesses–regardless of industry, size, or location on a map–downtime is money lost. Compromised data is trust lost, and those moments, although not insurmountable, are tough to rebound from,” said Sampath Sowmyanarayan, CEO of Verizon Business. “Companies need to dedicate time and budget on their security architecture, especially when it comes to off-premise devices: otherwise they are leaving themselves vulnerable to cyber-threat actors.”