According to new survey results released by Akonix Systems today, more than half of business people today are using instant messaging (IM) as a supplement to email communications.
The messaging security company said that an informal poll of several hundred business people found that 60 percent of respondents use IM to communicate and share data with colleagues, partners and customers. According to Don Montgomery, vice president of marketing for the company, most surprising is the fact that Akonix found users are increasingly utilizing IM to share attachments and business-related file.
He said that with IM's increasing popularity, information technology practitioners must be on the lookout to protect against improper use of the communication medium. Many companies that rely on policies banning IM in the workplace may still need to consider ways to protect against IM mishaps, he warned.
"I think the key thing is for IT departments to understand that whether it is sanctioned or not, employees are using the public IM networks for business, which creates potential liability and risk in both security and compliance," Montgomery said. "But it is possible to get control of it and it is imperative that you do."