Emerging from the Shadows: Survey Evidence of Shadow IT Use from Blissfully Ignorant Employees

12 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2015 Last revised: 1 Oct 2021

See all articles by Mario Silic

Mario Silic

Swiss School of Business and Management (SSBM); University of St. Gallen - Institute of Information Management

Date Written: July 18, 2015

Abstract

Current research dealt with various aspects of Shadow IT. However, we still do not have an evidence of how much the phenomenon is widespread in organizations. Are employees really using Shadow IT and how much? We conducted an online survey of 450 employees in 5 organizations to understand how much Shadow IT is used by employees. Our research found that Shadow IT phenomenon is widespread in the organizational context. We found that 52% of “Blissfully ignorant” employees, despite their 75% awareness of information security policy, do use Shadow IT to satisfy their job needs, increase their productivity and efficiency. These illegal activities are conducted as employees miss clarity on the proper compliance behaviors regarding Shadow IT but also because they believe that IT department cannot meet their needs in terms of the approval speed. Our study has several important insights for practitioners and offers some future directions for researchers.

Keywords: Shadow IT, software, organizational IT, shadow systems, information security

Suggested Citation

Silic, Mario, Emerging from the Shadows: Survey Evidence of Shadow IT Use from Blissfully Ignorant Employees (July 18, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2633000 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2633000

Mario Silic (Contact Author)

Swiss School of Business and Management (SSBM) ( email )

Avenue des Morgines 12
Geneva, 10000
Switzerland
9000 (Fax)

University of St. Gallen - Institute of Information Management ( email )

Langgasse 1
St. Gallen, 9008
Switzerland

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