Report: 59% of SMEs say cybersecurity is the top IT challenge of the past year

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A recent report from Jumpcloud finds that IT teams in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are seeing budget increases and feeling better about managing their work environments, but they’re also dealing with global events and concerned about facing significant security challenges.

The survey of 1007 US and UK SME IT decision-makers reveals that despite juggling a broad portfolio of issues, SMEs have seen the dust settle around pandemic-related workplace; nearly half of the SME workforce is back in the office full-time (47%), one-third are working hybrid (33%) and one-quarter are full-time remote. Among this workplace model, SMEs are operating in an environment of mixed devices, reporting their organizations are made up of 68% Windows, 20% macOS and 17% Linux devices.  

SMEs have a number of concerns around security, with 59% of them agreeing it has been the number one IT challenge over the past twelve months. The report reveals that two-thirds (66%) of respondents agree that adding security measures results in a more cumbersome experience for users, a slight uptick from the 58% who said the same in 2021. Perhaps in an effort to relieve that tension, 63% said that passwordless authentication is an organizational priority — but the IT teams themselves aren’t quite as sold, with 53% saying that passwordless is more of an industry buzzword than an IT priority. Outside threats pose the greatest challenge, as the three biggest security concerns are network attacks (40%), ransomware (31%) and software vulnerability exploits (31%). In 2021, the three top were software vulnerability exploits (40%), use of the same password across applications (39%) and use of unsecured networks (38%)

The survey also shows that global events aren’t sparing SMEs, with 59% saying the war in Ukraine has increased their organization’s focus on security, 61% saying supply chain disruptions and product shortages have hurt their business and 58% saying labor shortages have affected business.

The survey was conducted by open directory platform provider JumpCloud and Propeller Insights in April 2022. The survey included 502 SME decision-makers in the U.S. and U.K from companies with fewer than 2,500 employees.

Read the full report by Jumpcloud.

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