Guest Post | Advt. | Query:

The problem with passwords: UK workers waste more than two days a year logging in

  • 17% spend more than five minutes logging in to work apps each day
  • A quarter must log in to five different apps and systems
  • Nearly one in five write down passwords to remember them

Nottingham, UK, 25 January 2017 – Poor password practices leave some UK workers potentially wasting more than two days each year using multiple credentials to log in to essential systems, according to network security experts Hypersocket Software.

Research published in Hypersocket’s whitepaper Work smarter, not harder: solving password problems with Single Sign-On shows that 60 per cent of workers spend up to five minutes logging in to work apps each day, while a frustrated 17 per cent tap their fingers for more than five minutes before they can get down to work.

Lee Painter, CEO Hypersocket Software
Lee Painter, CEO Hypersocket Software
This means that UK office workers could be wasting between 7½ and 19 hours a year waiting for systems to get up and running – or between one and two and a half working days annually.

Multiple systems equals multiple logins
Just under two-thirds of respondents told Hypersocket they must log in to between two and five different apps and systems before they can get started for work, whilst just over a quarter (26 per cent) log in to more than five systems.

The findings highlight that the majority of employees are juggling multiple logins and credentials, despite the fact that technology like Single Sign-On, which automatically populates users’ passwords and logs them into their web apps with one-click is well established. In fact, only 9 per cent of those surveyed are able to use just one set of credentials across systems.

Password security risks
Multiple passwords not only open the door for hackers to enter the system, there are obvious knock-on implications for how strong and secure these passwords might be. With so many different systems to access, almost 40 per cent of employees admitted to using techniques to remember their passwords that pose a potential security risk to their business.

Nearly one in five people (19 per cent) admitted to writing their passwords down to remember them. A further 21 per cent routinely use obvious, easy to guess passwords such as their children’s or spouse’s names. Just 6 per cent use a password manager to store and organise passwords and then access them using one master password.

Lee Painter, CEO of Hypersocket Software comments: “Tough access control requirements mean that, understandably, most enterprise systems require a password to grant users access and our findings highlight the password problem employee’s face in juggling multiple logins and the obvious knock on effect on security and productivity.”

He adds: “But it’s a problem with a straightforward solution. Implementing Single Sign-On technology can mean the difference between breach and security, inefficiency and productivity. For employees one-click sign in is the difference between inconvenience and accessibility, working harder or working smarter.”

The pain of password resets
The research also shows there is more pain for those who forget their passwords. Over one third (36 per cent) of people have work applications they don’t bother to use anymore because they have forgotten the password. And while 63 per cent of respondents use a password self-service system for password resets, a quarter (25 per cent) still have to contact an IT help desk to reset their passwords.

Concludes Lee: “Whatever the future with trends such as biometric passwords, it’s probable that the traditional password will remain a key security layer for the foreseeable future and so continue to create pain points for employees. Poor password practices and weak management of identities will continue to make enterprises vulnerable and create a route for hackers and malicious insiders to breach systems.”

For more insight into the challenges that arise for employees and enterprises from the use of multiple passwords and the benefits of Single Sign-On technology, download Hypersocket’s whitepaper: Work smarter, not harder: solving password problems with Single Sign-On.

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