Why IT May Call a Penalty on the Olympics
With the Summer Olympics kicking off today, August 5th, many organizations are unprepared for a significant—and potentially dangerous—boost in employee internet usage, according to recently released surveys from TEKsystems and Riverbed. After all, Zika isn't the only virus to worry about during the games, as cyber-criminals may exploit the increased interest in online streaming and Olympics-related sites to launch network attacks. Despite the elevated concerns, a significant number of companies do not plan to deploy additional filters, blockers, firewalls or similar software as a preventive measure this month. They also do not intend to issue guidelines for internet usage during the games. While many IT departments will attempt to limit streaming on the network, they realize that employees are getting around restrictions by using their personal devices to watch events while on the job. "A large number of organizations are not adequately preparing to guard against the increased risk to corporate networks from this activity," said Jason Hayman, research manager for TEKsystems. "Current mandates along with tracking internet use … are simply not sufficient. This goes beyond simply viewing or streaming by employees; the international nature of the Olympics and a heightened level of interest related to the host nation of this year's games potentially expose corporate networks to a variety of risks." More than 600 IT professionals took part in the TEKsystems research, and more than 300 took part in the Riverbed research.