Distraction on overdrive: Security in a time of permacrisis

Distraction on overdrive: Security in a time of permacrisis

Nick Summers by Nick Summers on

Permacrisis: ‘An extended period of instability and insecurity, especially one resulting from a series of catastrophic events.'

We can probably all agree that we’re living in a state of permacrisis right now. After grappling with Covid-19, the world has been rocked by volatile stock markets, record-setting inflation, and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. No wonder Collins Dictionary chose permacrisis as its word of the year for 2022.

Last year, our State of Access report delved into burnout and its impact on cybersecurity in the workplace. This year, we’re exploring how these trends, challenges, and behaviors have evolved in a time defined by permacrisis. To do this, we surveyed 2,000 adults in the U.S. and Canada who are in full-time employment and spend most of their working hours in front of a computer.

Here’s what we found:

Our key findings

  • The permacrisis is causing more stress. One in three employees (32%) told us they’re more stressed than ever before.

  • Non-stop crises are making workers more distracted. Four out of five employees (79%) said they feel distracted on a typical working day.

  • Ongoing crises are affecting how people feel about their job. Nearly half of employees working in technology, IT, and telecomms (46%) said these distractions from world events make it hard to care about their job.

  • These distractions are impacting workers’ security habits. 45% of distracted employees don’t follow all the security rules at their organization, compared to 29% who are not distracted.

  • Password reuse is a widespread problem. One in three employees (34%) reuse passwords despite knowing the risk.

  • Senior leaders are more likely to choose poor passwords. Half of workers at the level of VP and above (49%) use personal identifiers in their passwords, compared to a third of individual contributors (34%).

Read the full report

If you want to learn more about the permacrisis we’re living through and its impact on cybersecurity, check out the full report. It dives deeper into the deluge of world issues that have occupied our thoughts over the last 12 months. You’ll also learn how many people are currently using a password manager at work, and what employees see as the biggest security threat facing their companies.

What’s the solution?

Permacrisis, and widespread distractions, may be here to stay. Our report considers how companies should be responding to this phenomenon, and the importance of supporting everyone with human-centric security solutions.

“It’s vital that businesses take security off of people’s plates, by implementing seamless systems that eliminate the need for human action. Mishaps are inevitable — it’s not a case of if the world’s distractions will cause employees to become more vulnerable to humor error, it’s a matter of when. The easier we can make security, the less security itself will become yet another distraction.” — Jeff Shiner, CEO of 1Password

We hope our research encourages companies to reflect on what’s happening around the world, and the strain it might be placing on their employees. This introspection is a critical first step to understanding the problem, and what can be done to make cybersecurity simpler and less stressful for workers everywhere.

Distraction on overdrive: Security in a time of permacrisis

Learn more about permacrisis and its impact on cybersecurity by reading our State of Access report.
Read the report

Content Marketing Manager

Nick Summers - Content Marketing Manager Nick Summers - Content Marketing Manager

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