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July 30, 2014

Majority of UK workers too scared to break social media rules

But 41% of you still defy your bosses and use Facebook at work.

By Ben Sullivan

A study has revealed that British employees are the most likely in Europe to ignore workplace restrictions on social media and messaging apps, but 60% of workers are still too scared to defy their bosses’ rules.

40% of European office workers are banned from using Facebook at work, or at least have restricted access to the site, but more than two in five UK employees who know their companies restrict Facebook defy their employers by using it at work.

These employees either ignored workplace bans, or used their own technology to overcome work-imposed restrictions.

Rob Orr, VP of Enterprise Business, Samsung Europe, said: "The younger generation is showing what workplaces will look like in just a few years’ time. Businesses cannot afford for their employees to break corporate security and Internet policies as a matter of routine.

Add in the fact that workers are increasingly using their personal devices at work, and their work devices for personal tasks, and it is evident that organisations need clearly-defined boundaries between both that are understood – and obeyed – by employees."

The research, conducted by Samsung, polled 4,500 office workers across Europe.

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In the UK, Millennials aged 18-34 were most likely to defy corporate restrictions on access to websites and applications, being almost twice as likely to disobey compared to the average across all age groups. The research found that almost half admitted to ignoring or circumventing workplace bans on Facebook and video streaming sites such as YouTube.

Commenting on the findings, Dr Dimitrios Tsivrikos, consumer and business psychologist at University College London, said: "From a security point of view, it’s perfectly natural that employers should want to control their employees’ use of technology, to a degree. If, however, they also neglect the contemporary needs of their workforce they may face reductions in employee productivity and engagement. The days when employees would simply follow the rules without questioning them are truly behind us. Trust, clear communication and meaningful frameworks are far more effective at facilitating constructive behaviour – both at work and at play."

The survey was part of Samsung’s peddling of Knox, its mobile-based enterprise security platform.

Knox gives a device a separate ‘container’, a secure section of the phone where IT admin can control permissions, access, and remote wipe data and information through the Enterprise Mobility Management console. Users also have access to this, allowing personnel themselves to track a missing device, wipe a device, and many other admin functions.

It was last month, at the Google I/O keynote, when Samsung and Google fannounced plans to integrate Knox into the next version of Android.

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