The August 2020 Edition of the Cloud and Threat Report of Netskope which analyzes the interesting trends on enterprise cloud service and app use, web and cloud-enabled threats, and cloud data migrations and transfers has been released. The report shows that there was a 148% rise in remote workers due to the COVID-19 pandemic—which resulted in a 161% increase in visits to high-risk apps and websites, as personal use of managed devices nearly doubled.
The effects of the abrupt shift to remote work in 2020
The Netskope Cloud and Threat Report is produced by Netskope Threat Labs, a team composed of the industry’s foremost cloud threat and malware researchers who discover and analyze the latest cloud threats affecting enterprises. The report was based on anonymized data collected from the Netskope Security Cloud platform across millions of users.
Ray Canzanese, threat research director at Netskope, said,
“The abrupt shift to remote work in 2020 sent a shockwave through organizations, as people found work and personal lives blended unlike ever before. While many companies rose to the challenge to embrace cloud-based collaboration tools, we also found increased risk as employees used work devices for personal reasons. Organizations must tackle this problem head-on by prioritizing threat protection and ensuring safe cloud and web access through methods like strong authentication and access controls, data and threat protection, as well as zero-trust network access to private apps in data centers and public cloud services. Enacting measures like this will reduce exposure of apps, cloud-enabled threats, unintentional data movement, and limit network lateral movement.”
64% of workers are now remote
With the COVID-19 pandemic, as 64% of workers are now working remotely. According to the report, along with this increase in remote work came to an 80% increase in the use of collaboration apps as remote workers seek to remain connected with their colleagues, and the total number of cloud apps being used in the average enterprise increased to over 7,000 in the largest enterprises.
Another important finding is that personal use of devices increased by 97% and the use of risky apps and websites increased by 161%. Netskope Threat Labs found that there is a 600% increase in the amount of traffic to websites hosting adult content and that 7% of all users uploaded sensitive corporate data to personal instances of cloud apps—putting this data at risk of inappropriate use and theft.
The report also determines the top 5 most common types of sensitive data being uploaded to personal instances as below:
- Protected Health Information (PHI)
- Personally Identifiable Information (PII)
- General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
- Source Code
- Company Confidential Information
While the cybercriminals’ adoption of the cloud as an attack vector continues to grow, cloud phishing and cloud malware delivery uncovered as the two most common techniques. In 2020, 63% of malware was delivered over cloud applications—a four-point increase from the end of 2019. The top cloud apps and services from which Netskope blocked malware downloads were: