One in five Singapore firms use paper to manage privileged passwords

Some 22 percent of businesses in Singapore use paper-based logbooks to manage privileged account passwords, while 55 percent monitor only some privileged accounts or not at all.
Written by Eileen Yu, Senior Contributing Editor on

One in five businesses or 22 percent in Singapore still depend on paper-based logbooks to manage privileged account passwords, while 90 percent say they face challenges managing such passwords.

In comparison, 19 percent in Asia-Pacific and 18 percent globally still used paper logbooks for privileged password managements, revealed a survey by Dimensional Research, which polled 913 respondents from eight markets including Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, Germany, and the UK. The study was commissioned by data access management vendor, One Identity.

Privileged accounts traditionally encompassed employees with admin access or control to root accounts.

Some 87 percent across the Asia-Pacific region acknowledged facing challenges in managing privileged passwords, slightly lower than 88 percent globally.

In Singapore, 55 percent confessed they were monitoring only some privileged accounts, or not monitoring at all, compared to 57 percent globally who said likewise.

Another 34 percent used spreadsheets to track privileged accounts and 21 percent expressed their inability to monitor or record activities performed with admin credentials. In addition, 28 percent said they could not consistently identify users who performed admin activities.

Furthermore, 38 percent of IT security administrators did not change a default admin password.

"Privileged accounts present an easy target for hackers or even malicious employees when poor security and management processes exist within an organisation," said One Identity's Asia-Pacific and Japan vice president and general manager, Lennie Tan, who warned that the study findings exposed the risk to data theft that the companies faced.

John Milburn, One Identity's president and general manager, added that security breaches involving compromised privileged accounts had resulted in "astronomical mitigation costs" and data theft.

The report pointed to a Forrester Research study that found 80 percent of breaches had involved privileged credentials.

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