Companies clamp down on social media use

Sep 06, 2011
<p>New research finds rise in the number of companies blocking access to all social media sites</p>

Companies have clamped down on social media use by their employees as managers fret over security and data loss concerns, according to new research from IT firm Clearswift.

The research, which surveyed businesses across six major economies, finds a hike in the proportion of companies restricting access to social media.

Overall, 19 percent of companies say they block employee access to all social media, up from 9 percent in the previous year’s study. More than half (56 percent) of managers say they block access to some social media sites, with 49 percent using specialized tools for this job.

Clearswift says the strictest country in the survey is Germany, where 23 percent of companies block all social media access, followed by Australia with 21 percent.

In addition to Germany and Australia, the research was conducted in the UK, the US, the Netherlands and Japan.

In relation to web use, managers say they are most worried about security concerns and data loss. Almost 90 percent of respondents say these two issues are preventing technological adoption to some extent, notes Clearswift.

‘Rather than embracing new channels of communication, companies have clamped down and become overtly defensive, which is consequently stifling potential avenues of growth,’ comments Andrew Wyatt, chief operating officer of Clearswift, in a statement.

‘But the research also provides evidence that businesses recognize the importance of new technologies, which leads me to believe this is a knee-jerk reaction rather than a long-term trend.’

Last week, Deutsche EuroShop’s Patrick Kiss highlighted the restrictions on existing sites by companies as one reason why he built a new site for his own German social media club.

Click here to read the full report from Clearswift.

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