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Corporate Networks to Face Herculean Bandwidth and Security Challenges

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Western Hemisphere Time Zone Alignment and Increased Internet Access Converge to Create a Perfect Storm, Many Corporations Failing to Proactively Address Network Threats

In anticipation of the games in Rio de Janeiro, TEKsystems®, a leading provider of IT staffing solutions, IT talent management expertise and IT services, today released the findings of a survey that explores the potential impact of the games on corporate networks. Conducted in late June 2016, the survey evaluates the perceptions of more than 600 IT professionals, including help desk support analysts, developers, systems administrators, database administrators, network administrators and others.

The games have not taken place in a Western hemisphere time zone since the winter of 2010 (Vancouver) and before that, the summer of 1996 (Atlanta). Networks could experience significant impact due to competitions taking place during working hours, widespread internet access (as compared to the games of 1996), and heightened concerns regarding the Rio de Janeiro location.

Key highlights from the survey include:

Nearly Three-Quarters Expect Increased Usage; Eight in Ten Expect Their Company’s Network to be at Greater Risk

Q: To what degree do you anticipate increased internet usage at your organization due to the games?

Major increase


Moderate increase


Minor increase


No change


Q: My company's network will be at greater risk due to the websites employees may visit during the games.

Strongly agree




Neither agree or disagree




Strongly disagree


Q: Has your company experienced bottleneck or bandwidth issues due to increased internet usage during large sporting or broadcast events?





  • TEKsystems’ Take: Seventy-two percent of IT professionals expect moderate to major increases in internet usage at their organizations due to the games. What’s more, 79 percent acknowledge that their corporate networks will be at greater risk due to that increased internet usage. The concern respondents have with expected increases in internet usage is warranted, given the greater risk and the significant number (44 percent) that have experienced network performance issues in similar circumstances in the past. Based on survey findings, it seems clear that the games have the potential to create security and performance issues for a significant number of network managers and administrators.
Despite Anticipated Impact, Many Companies Taking No Action; Prefer to Monitor Than to Prevent

Q: Do you plan to issue official guidelines or communications regarding use of bandwidth, accessing unauthorized sites, or viewing the games during work hours?





Q: Are you planning to introduce any additional filters, blockers, firewalls or similar software into your network as a preventative measure for the games?





Q: Has your company’s IT team ever tracked internet/streaming use associated with a specific source, such a sporting event (e.g., the games, World Cup)?





Q: Have you seen employees “work around” mandates that prevent the use of company laptops to stream events like the games by using personal devices (e.g., smartphone, tablet)?





  • TEKsystems’ Take: The vast majority of respondents—more than 8 in 10—will not be issuing special guidelines or communications regarding use of network resources to view/interact with the games, and nearly half are not introducing additional measures such as filters, blockers or firewalls specifically for the games. Although the majority of respondents (64 percent) actively track internet usage associated with a specific event, the research shows that a significant number of organizations do not. TEKsystems views the lack of specific guidelines combined with the lack of special preventive measures by such a high number of respondents as having a potentially detrimental effect on network security. The fact that many organizations are not taking additional measures may be attributed to confidence in their existing preventive measures. This is somewhat concerning, given both the increased risk associated with employees viewing/interacting with the games and the fact that 44 percent of these same respondents have had employees bypass existing mandates preventing use of company laptops to stream video for events like the games.

““This data shows that—despite the expected popularity of the upcoming games and the associated uptick in the use of network resources to view events—a large number of organizations are not adequately preparing to guard against the increased risk to corporate networks from this activity,” said TEKsystems Research Manager Jason Hayman. “Current mandates along with tracking internet use or streaming associated with viewing a particular sporting event are insufficient. This goes beyond simply viewing or streaming by employees; the international nature of the games and a heightened level of interest related to the host nation of this year’s games potentially exposes corporate networks to a variety of risks. Organizations should conduct a thorough risk assessment on their networks and determine whether their level of preparedness is adequate. If the answer is ‘no,’ they should consider diverting existing personnel and resources or augmenting their capabilities on a contingency basis in order to address the issue and protect their networks during this time of increased risk.”

TEKsystems’ Jason Hayman is available for additional commentary. For more information about the survey, or to schedule an interview, please contact Nathan Bowen at

About TEKsystems

People are at the heart of every successful business initiative. At TEKsystems, we understand people. Every year we deploy more than 80,000 IT professionals at 6,000 client sites across North America, Europe and Asia. Our deep insights into IT human capital management enable us to help our clients achieve their business goals–while optimizing their IT workforce strategies. We provide IT staffing solutions, IT talent management expertise and IT services to help our clients plan, build and run their critical business initiatives. Through our range of quality-focused delivery models, we meet our clients where they are, and take them where they want to go, the way they want to get there.