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Report Finds that Video Traffic Is Choking the Office Network


While the marketing department in your organization is doing everything it can to get people to view its videos, the IT department is trying to keep the network robust in the face of increasing online video traffic. Network security company Palo Alto Networks has just released a report showing the effects of dramatically higher video viewing at work.

Palo Alto analyzed network traffic from over 2,000 organizations worldwide in creating its Application Usage and Risk report. It found that workplace streaming media bandwidth has tripled since its previous report in December, 2011, and now accounts for 13 percent of all bandwidth. For most companies, the biggest slice of that traffic is coming from YouTube. Netflix was also a big offender, showing that employees occasionally catch up on their shows while at work.

While companies routinely allow a little personal time at work, Palo Alto noted that there are risks with increased video viewing. For one thing, too much video traffic can cause the company network to run unacceptably slowly for other purposes. Also, greater bandwidth usage means greater bandwidth costs.

Video viewing can even open a door to malware. The report notes that some sites attach malware to videos, so the viewer unknowingly downloads the software while attempting to view a video. Often, a malware link is made to look like it came from a friend.

The report sees dramatic increases in peer-to-peer file trading and social network usage from office workers, as well. Visit Palo Alto to download the full report.




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