IT disaster recovery, cloud computing and information security news

Centrify Corporation has published the findings from a recent survey it commissioned to determine penetration and security compliance of Apple devices in the workplace. Conducted by Dimensional Research, the Centrify Apple survey demonstrates that while people widely use Apple devices for work, lack of security and management of those devices exposes companies to significant liabilities.

Of the total 2,249 US workers surveyed, nearly half (45 percent) use at least one Apple device for work purposes. In addition:

  • A majority of those Apple devices (63 percent) are owned by the user as opposed to the company and are used to access work email, corporate documents and business applications;
  • 59 percent of Macs are used to access confidential company information;
  • 65 percent of Macs are used to access sensitive or regulated customer information;
  • 51 percent of iPhones in the workplace are used to gain access to business applications;
  • 58 percent of iPads in the workplace are used to gain access to business applications.

However, despite the popularity of Apple devices in the workplace, businesses do not invest enough resources to secure or manage them.

  • Over half (51 percent) of all devices are secured by a password that is merely a single word or a series of numbers;
  • Most devices (58 percent) also do not have software installed to enforce strong passwords;
  • More than half (56 percent) of users report sharing their passwords with others;
  • Only 17 percent of Apple devices have a company-supplied password manager;
  • Only 28 percent of Apple devices have company-provided device management solutions installed;
  • Only 35 percent of Apple devices have encryption of stored data enforced by their company;
  • Ultimately there is no discernable correlation between password strength and sensitivity of information accessed or accessible from a particular device or user.

“Centrify’s Apple survey spotlights the massive exposures that occur when devices do not comply with standard corporate security policies,” said Bill Mann, senior vice president of products and marketing, Centrify. “In particular, customer data represents a huge liability. Disclosure of regulated information such as healthcare records could expose corporations to fines and other legal action. Most importantly, there are solutions on the market today that can handily secure Apple devices without sacrificing user productivity. It’s time for IT to take action.”

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