79% of respondents started remote working in the past 6 months, but only 30% of companies have provided remote working training
HONG KONG, Oct. 29, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Hong Kong Internet Registration Corporation Limited (“HKIRC”) today announced the results of the “Adoption and Cyber Security on Remote Working in Hong Kong” survey (“the survey”). In midst of COVID-19 pandemic, remote working has been widely adopted in commercial settings. This survey aims to explore the market prospect of remote working development in Hong Kong and its close relationship with cybersecurity. In mid-August, HKIRC conduct a one-month research study through telephone and online interview. Nearly 1800 responses from local enterprises and individuals were successfully collected. Respondents are ranged in age from 18 to 65 and they cover a wide variety of business sectors including financial services, information technology, education, and logistics.
Study highlights increased adoption of remote working in Hong Kong during COVID-19 pandemic
Remote working is becoming increasingly popular in Hong Kong during COVID-19 pandemic. According to the survey, more than half of companies (64%) have adopted remote working; increased by 20% when compared to the figures a year ago. Nearly 80% (79%) of individual respondents have started remote working in the past 6 months.
Computer tools are necessarily important for getting business into remote working. The survey findings show that video conference (60%), webmail (52%) and desktop access (43%) are mainly adopted in remote workplace. Among these, video conference is the most popular remote working feature, in which 40% of individual respondents used 2 or more different video conference software.
Concerns over provision of resources at remote workplace to mitigate cybersecurity risks
While the survey reflects a wider adoption of remote working in Hong Kong, both companies and individual respondents revealed their top concerns at remote workplace are particularly in cybersecurity risk and data breach. In terms of resources geared for remote workplace, respondents expressed a less positive attitude. Personal computer (64%) and mobile devices (63%) are the major devices for remote working since not all companies are providing computer to their staff, especially for SMEs. In addition, respondents have expressed concern about the inadequacy of working instructions and cybersecurity awareness among SMEs, in which only 42% of SMEs have provided remote working guidelines and instruction and 41% have disseminated cybersecurity information to staff. Individuals even indicated that only 30% and 13% of them have received these training and information in the past 6 months, respectively. This identifies the problem of organizational policy implementation gap in remote working.
Mr. Wilson Wong, CEO of HKIRC, said: “The emerging trend of remote-working has woken up companies to put cybersecurity on their business-risk agenda. As revealed by the survey results, employees have raised their concern over cybersecurity and inadequacy of guidelines for remote workplace. To upkeep business performance and to secure employees’ confidence in sustaining productivity, companies should adopt proactive approach in rolling out robust and cyber-resilience practices and guidelines to enable employees hold their ways of working and maintain their professionalism to serve clients’ interests in the same way it does for office-based work.”
Public’s confidence and aspiration in the future development of remote working and digital transformation
Most companies and individual respondents (80%) opined that remote working will become more popular in the future and are aspired to witness effective remote working and digital transformation in their companies.
To ride on the wave of remote working and to cope with the development of digital transformation, more than half of the companies and individual respondents (64%) have expressed their wish to receive more cybersecurity information from their companies.
Mr. Simon Chan, Chairman of HKIRC, remarked, “The pandemic has forced us to rethink the concept of remote working as well as to overcome the challenges it brings along. I believe more forward-thinking companies would continue to practice remote working and step up to support employees in this endeavor. Being the critical internet infrastructure in Hong Kong, HKIRC has always been dedicated to foster a safe internet environment for the sustainable cyber development in Hong Kong. Facing new challenges in the digital era, we will strive to give our full support in promoting digital transformation to increase competitiveness of SMEs and enterprises and providing public with technological awareness and experience via various programmes such as free website security scan services, with view to ultimately build up Hong Kong as a smarter digital city.”
Hong Kong Internet Registration Corporation Limited (HKIRC) is a not-for-profit, non-statutory company limited by guarantee designated by the Government of the HKSAR to undertake the administration of Internet domain names under the .hk country code top level domain. HKIRC provides registration services for English domain names ending with .com.hk, .org.hk, .net.hk, .edu.hk, .gov.hk, .idv.hk, .hk and other domains to be introduced from time to time in Hong Kong.