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Are IT Security Priorities Changing Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic?

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has led many organizations to let their employees work remotely. However, IT security professionals frequently encountered problems as their organizations transitioned to remote work due to COVID-19, according to a survey conducted by identity and access management (IAM) company One Identity.

Key findings from One Identity's "Identity Governance and Administration (IGA) for the New Computing Normal" survey of 1,216 IT security professionals included:

  • 99 percent of IT security pros said COVID-19 led their organization to transition to remote work.
  • 54 percent indicated that they faced "some issues" when their organization shifted to remote work due to COVID-19.
  • 36 percent stated their organization's transition to remote work due to COVID-19 was "smooth."

Furthermore, 45 percent of IT security pros said they are fully prepared for the account changes necessary to move back to working from an office, the survey revealed.

COVID-19 Drives Shift in IT Security Priorities

The COVID-19 pandemic has created a "new normal" for global organizations. It also has forced many IT security pros to change their priorities, the survey showed.

Top priorities for survey respondents included:

  • Investment in cloud infrastructure
  • Identity/account lifecycle management
  • Identity process automation and workflow
  • Role management
  • Access request

Today's organizations must provide employees with the ability to work from anywhere without putting sensitive data and systems at risk, One Identity noted. To alleviate the security challenges associated with remote work, One Identity offered several recommendations, including:

  • Leverage multi-factor authentication (MFA)
  • Automate management of critical applications
  • Perform ongoing security auditing and reporting, regardless of employee location

MSSPs can provide security services to help organizations maintain secure application and data access and avoid data breaches and compliance issues. That way, MSSPs can empower organizations with the ability to support workers from any location.

Dan Kobialka

Dan Kobialka is senior contributing editor, MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E. He covers IT security, IT service provider business strategies and partner programs. Dan holds a M.A. in Print and Multimedia Journalism from Emerson College and a B.A. in English from Bridgewater State University. In his free time, Dan enjoys jogging, traveling, playing sports, touring breweries and watching football.