Businesses faced with growing integrity challenges created by pandemic-related disruptions have a powerful resource at their disposal in the form of the data held within the organisation. Correctly applied, data analytics technology can uncover anomalous behaviours and events that may otherwise go undetected by manual means.
That capability becomes particularly important in light of the issues created by the shift to remote and hybrid working. Hybrid working makes it more challenging to undertake effective compliance monitoring. This could potentially reduce the likelihood of the employees noticing unusual behaviours or events or of speaking up when they have a concern.
Working remotely could also potentially increase chances of an organisation’s data security to be compromised. Quite alarmingly given the number of people now using personal and remote devices for both work and personal use, our survey found that just over 25% of respondents knew little or nothing about polices on using personal devices work purposes in their organisation. The risk that arises whether from accidental leaking or theft of data is heightened in a remote environment.
This already difficult situation is exacerbated by the financial pressures facing many organisations which, in turn, can increase the potential for fraudulent behaviour. In that context, it is worthy of note that 10% of Irish companies reported they had experienced what they described as a significant fraud they deemed significant during the previous 18 months.
Workplace education to increase awareness of fraud and data security risks is, therefore, an essential requirement in the new normal. So too is the leveraging of data to identify issues before they arise.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and its potentially massive fines and other serious consequences for organisations which suffer data breaches has served to alert organisations to the importance of data security. But it is heartening to note that it is largely viewed as a positive development for business.