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New Study Says Employees Are More Likely To Breach Cyber Security Protocols When Under Pressure

The rise of the pandemic has brought forward a massive increase in cybersecurity attacks. And that’s one of the reasons why we’ve seen such a huge increase in organizations investing plenty to help deter the risk.

But most of the investment appears to be focused on how to keep data and their relevant operating systems secure. And yes, it is definitely something that’s soon going to be worthwhile, people often forget how humans are at the most vulnerable end of the spectrum.

Another debate arose regarding the incorrect assumptions surrounding insider attacks which would now be done with severely malicious intent.

How to determine one’s intent?

Research revealed how there was a failure on so many people’s part when it came down to complying with the cybersecurity protocols set up by the employer. And that may have to do in part with stress.

To be more specific, the researchers took out the time to quiz nearly 330 people that worked throughout the pandemic. They were questioned about whether or not they adhered to the policies in place that would provide protection against cybersecurity threats. This included a separate section about stress levels.

The researchers then chose to follow it up with more detailed questioning to see whether or not the decision to work remotely actually took a toll on cybersecurity. And that’s when more than half of the participants involved claim to have skipped over the protocols, adding how the chances to be given a task on this subject would be minimal.

Moreover, it was very interesting to see how 85% of people who responded said they would be more motivated of going through such protocols if it provided either them or their colleagues some sort of benefit.

But the results concluded that only 3% of people intentionally had a desire of causing harm, contrary to previous beliefs.

Does stress really make a difference?

As you can probably expect, the days when employees had more work on their plates or were under greater pressure were the exact same days that benign breaches were carried out. Hence, this was a strong conclusion that stress clearly decreases one’s desire to follow the rules, especially if the rules prevent us from doing something that needs to be done.

Common causes of stress included insecure jobs, family pressure, weak colleague interactions, and some of the demands that the protocols enlisted themselves. Hence, going through such a protocol was deemed to be tiresome and stuck, as if they were soon going to be monitored.

In conclusion, the research says that the way your job is designed is closely linked to the way a cybersecurity protocol comes into play.


H/T: Cyber News.

Read next: Small Businesses Are At Great Risk for Cyber Attacks, 30% Have No Data Security Protocols

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