McAfee recently released a report on "Web 2.0: A Complex Balancing Act – The First Global Study on Web 2.0 Usage, Risks and Best Practices.” The report shows that security concerns are hindering the corporate adoption of Web 2.0 technologies despite the fact that they believe these technologies will assist in productivity and revenue. More than 60% of respondents have suffered losses (averaging $2M) in security related incidents last year.
The survey (of 1000 decision-makers in 17 countries) found that half of the respondents were concerned about security with the use of Web 2.0 technologies (social media, blogging, collaborative platforms, web mail, content sharing). Companies’ top 4 perceived threats from employee use of Web 2.0 are malicious software (35%), viruses (15%), overexposure of information (11%) and spyware (10%). 60% believe reputation damage is the biggest consequence of inappropriate Web 2.0 use. Web 2.0 technology adoption was highest in Brazil, Spain and India and lowest in Canada, Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom.
The report looks at the drivers for adoption of Web 2.0 technologies as well as their benefits and risks. Since the report found that many businesses block Web 2.0 technologies rather than put policies in place, it appears there is a long way to go before companies securely embrace these technologies.
“Web 2.0 and social networking technologies can be used effectively for some business purposes,” said Eugene H. Spafford, founder and Executive Director of CERIAS. “But to reap the benefits of Web 2.0, organizations must be proactive about understanding and managing the corresponding challenges. That involves putting the right policies in place, and deploying the technology that can enforce those policies.”