#privacy: Research reveals the unlikely targets of business network hacks

Research by Probrand found that 43% of UK businesses have suffered a data breach in the past year.

The survey of 1,075 UK workers in full or part-time employment, found that 72% of companies who suffered a data breach in the past year found that network infiltration had came from an unsecured wireless device, such as a printer, scanner, mobile phone or laptop connected to their Wi-Fi network.

Just under half (43%) of the UK businesses surveyed had reported cybersecurity breaches or attacks in the past 12 months. To which, more than half of them (52%) had open Wi-Fi networks and/or devices. 

Additionally, only 23% of the surveyed employees knew that network infiltration could be conducted via devices such as printers and scanners. 

It was also identified that just 10% of the companies admitted to actively checking their printers and scanners for malware as part of their security checks. 

Matt Royle, marketing director, Probrand commented:

“Every device and connection presents an exploitable entry point. Organisations need to take a ‘zero trust’ approach that assumes all devices connected to the network, and the internet, are inherently insecure unless otherwise tested, protected and monitored.

Cyber-attacks aim to target the weakest point and examples like a wireless webcam, printer or scanner can present an unsecure ‘way in’ to a business’s network. Once in, hackers will exploit the opportunity to make money through whatever means they have at their disposal.

“The research indicates organisations are not taking this seriously and are running the gauntlet of being hacked via connected devices. This clearly needs to be an area of focus with a look at endpoint security, mobile device management and firewalls amongst other measures to check.”


PrivSec Conferences will bring together leading speakers and experts from privacy and security to deliver compelling content via solo presentations, panel discussions, debates, roundtables and workshops.

For more information on upcoming events, visit the website.

We have been awarded the number 1 GDPR Blog in 2019 by Feedspot.