Survey reinforces growing insecurity about IT security

It’s no surprise that more than half the respondents in a recent survey of information technology professionals said malware poses one of the biggest threats to their companies’ IT security. However, it is slightly surprising that 16.6 percent said malware specifically on mobile devices was the greatest threat they faced.

The figures come from a recently released survey of 250 security and authentication professionals by PhoneFactor, a company that provides out-of-band authentication services via cell phones. Given the company’s interests, it also comes as no surprise that most respondents said they would prefer to use a cell phone for online authentication rather than some kind of standalone security token.

A quarter of the respondents said their company’s network or data had been compromised, up from 20 percent the year before. There was a corresponding drop in confidence in authentication systems, with only 35 percent saying their company’s scheme is very or extremely secure, down from 42 percent the year before.

The bottom line: Almost nobody believes that user name and password authentication is adequate for protecting sensitive data, but most users don’t want to be bothered with more secure and complex schemes.

About the Author

William Jackson is a Maryland-based freelance writer.

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