New data released by Sophos has found that large numbers of Australian IT managers are ‘flyingblind’ and unable to identify 41 per cent of their organization’s network traffic, raising serious security, productivity and legal concerns.

The firm’s global  The Dirty Secrets of Network Firewalls study – which questioned some 2,700 IT decision makers from mid-sized businesses in 10 countries including the US, Canada, Mexico, France, Germany, UK, Australia, Japan, India, and South Africa – found that on average, it takes Australian organizations about 2.6 working days a week to identify, isolate, and remediate infected machines within their networks.

“That’s one-third of a person’s salary spent on something that ought to be prevented,” said a Sophos spokesperson.

“If you can’t see everything on your network, you can’t ever be confident that your organization is protected from threats,” said Sophos senior VP and GM of products Dan Schiappa.

“With governments worldwide introducing stiffer penalties for data breach and loss, knowing who and what is on your network is becoming increasingly important. This dirty secret can’t be ignored any longer,” he added.

Other key findings included:

  • Lack of application visibility is a serious security concern for 87 per cent of Australian organisations surveyed.
  • Half of Australian organisations polled are concerned about productivity loss from unwanted or unnecessary applications they can’t see on their network
  • 60% of Australian respondents believed their organization’s current defences were not totally sufficient