Australian organisations are struggling with network breaches, ransomware attacks, remote work, and more

Tim Jefferson, SVP, Engineering for Data, Networks and Application Security, Barracuda

Barracuda, a trusted partner and leading provider of cloud-enabled security solutions, has released key findings from a report titled “The state of network security in 2021.” Commissioned by Barracuda, the research surveyed 750 global and Australian IT decision makers, responsible for their organisation’s networking, public cloud, and security to get their perspectives on cloud adoption, working from home, security concerns, and a variety of issues and challenges related to cybersecurity risks.

The report found organisations are currently experiencing a high level of network breaches, and ever-increasing ransomware attacks are contributing to the security risks. This challenging situation is not surprising, given the pandemic-induced remote work environment and rapid technology transformation.

Indeed, work-from-home is here to stay, and IT departments will need to support a hybrid environment that enables work from home and from the office.   Despite broadband connections and company-issued devices, remote workers continue to experience IT pains, such as slow applications, dropped calls, and poor video. User-experience issues and security challenges are related: Companies that work to resolve security issues tend to also improve their user experience.

Organisations are also realising that moving SaaS applications to the public cloud improves the user experience, and new technologies are available to support cloud presence and improve security. These Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) technologies include networking and security components. Companies are also investing in and plan to continue to aggressively invest in SD-WAN and Zero Trust Network Access. To take full advantage of SASE deployments, organisations are choosing cloud-native SASE solutions. There is growing evidence that these investments are going to help organisations better adapt to the new work environment.

Overall, the research shows that network breaches, ransomware attacks, and remote-work challenges underscore the need for cloud-native Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) deployments.

 Australian highlights from the report include: 

  • 86% of respondents said their organisation has been the victim of a security breach once in the last year.
  • Companies with staff working predominantly from home had a significantly higher network security breach rate (93%), compared to companies with staff working predominantly in the office (67%). 
  • A full 72% of those surveyed said their organisation has been the victim of at least one ransomware attack in the last year.
  • On average, only 12% of employees at the businesses surveyed currently work in the office all the time.
  • A full 96% of respondents with company-issued devices share their home internet connection with other members of their household, so the risk of breach remains.
  • 33% of companies with all apps in the public cloud have already deployed SD-WAN, less than companies with only a few apps in the public cloud (40%).
  • 67% of companies with all apps in the public cloud have deployed Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA), while just 40% of companies with only a few apps in the public cloud have deployed it.
  • On average, organisations have 30 Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) apps deployed.
  • On average, respondents said 62% of their traffic is directed to public cloud providers.


“Organisations are experiencing a high level of network breaches and facing ongoing connectivity and security challenges as they adapt to hybrid work environments,” said Tim Jefferson, SVP, Engineering for Data, Networks and Application Security, Barracuda. “But, they are realising that moving to SaaS applications and the public cloud improves both the user experience and security, so they’re starting to embrace new SASE technologies.”




Download the full report:

Download The state of application security in 2021: