A smartphone and two laptops.

Home Office invests over £44m in remote working devices

The Home Office, the leading government department responsible for immigration, security and public order, has invested more than £44 million in more than 65,000 electronic devices, including laptops, smartphones and tablets since the pandemic, according to official figures.

The data, retrieved through the Freedom of Information Act (FOI) and analyzed by the Parliament Street think tank, observed the number of laptops, smartphones and tablets purchased by the Home Office each year from March 2019 to April 2022, as well as the cost. per device.

The Home Office spent £44,367,488 on 65,100 laptops, smartphones and tablets during the reporting period to support remote staff during the Covid-19 pandemic.

There was a stunning 282% increase in spending on electronic devices after the pandemic, with the Home Office increasing spending from £5,514,950 in 2019 to £21,047,896 in 2021 fueled by the onset of remote working .

Laptops accounted for 66% of total device spending, with £34,737,000 spent on 43,088 laptops. Between 2019 and 2021, there was a massive 324% increase in purchased laptops.

The 2021 calendar year saw the Home Office’s biggest investment, with 28,915 appliances purchased, totaling a total expenditure of £21,047,896 as the Home Office looked to better equip staff for hybrid work.

Achi Lewis, area VP EMEA, Absolute Software, said: “As we have seen the pandemic forcing companies to adapt to hybrid working, we have inevitably seen an increase in investment in electronic devices to manage the situation and it is positive to to see that the Home Office is in charge in this area.

“But with a larger number of devices comes a larger attack surface, especially with employees who are outside of centralized office networks. Devices used in remote locations need to be properly secured to minimize risk to both employee and employer. Ensuring a secure and resilient workforce is key to a more flexible approach to working life.

“Integrating resilient zero-trust network access into organizations’ security infrastructure is an important way to secure devices with confidence. Resilience is key to ensuring trust is established and built upon, rather than having previously trusted devices shut down immediately – an employee may legitimately log into the network from a new coffee shop rather than their home network . Trusted devices could be better monitored and organizations could have the option to freeze devices on a network at the touch of a button to prevent cybercriminals from moving sideways through a network and causing further damage once a device has been compromised.”

Keywords: devicesHome officework remotely

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