Cloud is top concern amid COVID-19 for 9 in 10 execs

Photo by Manny Pantoja

More than 90% of decision-makers across the globe consider digital transformation and cloud-managed services a priority for businesses during shutdown amid the pandemic, a study from Infoblox and Zogby Analytics Research shows.

There were 1,077 respondents globally, including about 400 from Singapore, Australia, China, and Japan. The rest were from the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands and Spain.

Globally, the percentage of companies with a majority of employees working remotely more than tripled — from 21% before the shutdown to 70% after. Two-fifths companies, twice the pre-COVID-19 rate, are permanently keeping a majority of workers remote.

Worldwide, 85% of surveyed businesses reported being “very prepared” or “somewhat prepared” with the right technology or cybersecurity in place for their employees to work from home. Within APAC, Australian (52%) businesses were “very prepared” for the transition, while Japan (38%) and China (38%) reported lower but still high levels of perceived preparedness.

Overall, organisations say distributing sanctioned devices (35%), building network infrastructure (35%), and securing the network (29%) were top IT challenges when transitioning to remote work. 

Globally, 68% say better threat detection and or mitigation technologies would enable more remote work for their organisations. Specifically, respondents are looking for better visibility into devices on the corporate network (65%), cloud applications workers are using (61%), and compromised devices (46%).

Companies are reversing policies to allow the use of personal applications to foster collaboration. Nearly three-quarters (73%) of companies in Australia and 66% in Japan are allowing workers to connect with each other using applications like WhatsApp, Zoom, and Houseparty, compared to 63% globally. 

A majority of the companies in Australia (73%), China (65%) and Japan (72%) plan on making additional investments in DNS to secure their expanded networks.

“When the COVID-19 pandemic first began, organisations in APAC rushed to enable remote work overnight,” said George Chang, Infoblox VP of sales in APAC and Japan. “Their top priority was making sure that workers could connect to enterprise applications from their homes—sometimes through unsecured personal devices.”

Chang added that while most firms can now accommodate the basics of remote work, this report highlights the need for more security controls.