More unauthorized outsourcing to take place with telecommuting

Summary:Verizon exec who headed investigation uncovering U.S. developer outsourcing his job to China believes more similar cases will pick up as firms turn to telecommuting for greater autonomy and productivity.

A U.S. developer was watching cat videos while outsourcing his job to China. (Source: YouTube)

SINGAPORE--There will be more cases of unauthorized outsourcing with the proliferation of the telecommuting and mobile workforce because of the autonomy given to employees.

That was the view of Andrew Valentine, senior consultant with Verizon's forensics and investigative response team, who headed a case earlier this year where a developer who worked at an unnamed critical infrastructure company, outsourced his job to China and spent much of his day surfing cat videos instead.

His move was uncovered by Verizon when his company thought it was being hacked from China with unauthorized VPN connections on its system, Valentine noted, speaking to ZDNet Asia at a roundtable here Friday.

Valentine observed the incident had taken place because the company had been carrying out mobile workforce and telecommuting initiatives with the best intentions for greater productivity.

"At the moment, there are probably many people who are doing this, just that they have yet to be exposed."
Andrew Valentine,
Senior consultant, Verizon

Since this gives employees greater freedom and autonomy to do whatever they want, they are more likely to secretly outsource their work because there are no policies in place to govern their working style, he explained.

This is why Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer decided to end telecommuting and have employees work in office , to ensure nobody was being "sneaky", he pointed out.

Moving forward, as more organizations leverage telecommuting and BYOD to become more efficient and innovative, Valentine "won't be surprised" if there are more cases of such unauthorized outsourcing of their because there is no one there to keep track.

"At the moment, there are probably many people who are doing this, just that they have yet to be exposed," Valentine said.

Topics: CXO, Mobility, Security


Elly grew up on the adrenaline of crime fiction and it spurred her interest in cybercrime, privacy and the terror on the dark side of IT. At ZDNet Asia, she has made it her mission to warn readers of upcoming security threats, while also covering other tech issues.

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