Report: Disconnect Between IT Execs and their Staff Puts SaaS Security at Risk

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There’s a strong disconnect between IT executives and administrators on the visibility and control their organizations have when it comes to SaaS applications. According to research released this week by BetterCloud, 30 percent of IT executives say their organization lacks complete visibility into SaaS applications, while 47 percent of non-executive IT professionals say the same thing.

Almost half of IT executives (49 percent) say their team lacks complete control over their SaaS applications, but with 63 percent of all other IT professionals saying the same thing, nearly one in seven organizations has a “disconnect,” BetterCloud says.

BetterCloud surveyed over 900 IT professionals, with 146 of them (roughly 15 percent) from the executive level (CIOs and VPs), and found that 84 percent of them use either G Suite or Office 365. A report released earlier this month by BetterCloud finds that t 60 percent of G Suite teams and 64 percent of Office 365 teams are underfunded for SaaS application security.

Executives are significantly less likely to perceive onboarding as an issue in their organization, with 11 percent less executives reporting that a quarter of newly hired workers lack access to the right SaaS applications.

Even relative to these disquieting results, the difference in perception of offboarding is alarming. Almost one-third (31 percent) of non-executives say former employees can access company data, while only 13 percent of executives agree. Between productivity loss from incomplete onboarding, and the potential cost of breaches from poor offboarding, the costs of a disconnect in perceptions about IT issues could be quite significant.

Staffing and cloud skills has been highlighted as an industry-wide issue for quite some time, but again, different parts of organizations do not see things the same way. Fifty-four percent of non-executives, but only 38 percent of executives, said that their teams are understaffed. Eleven percent more non-executives also said their budget is inadequate.

A study released by Gemalto in July showed that nearly half of corporate data is out of the IT department’s control. The extent to which this affected the perception of SaaS control in BetterCloud’s research is uncertain, but it does indicate that the less rosy picture held by non-executives may be closer to reality.

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