Accelerate your SSE journey. Join Netskope at RSA.

  • Security Service Edge Products

    Protect against advanced and cloud-enabled threats and safeguard data across all vectors.

  • Borderless SD-WAN

    Confidently provide secure, high-performance access to every remote user, device, site, and cloud.

  • Platform

    Unrivaled visibility and real-time data and threat protection on the world's largest security private cloud.

Netskope Named a Leader in the 2022 Gartner Magic Quadrant™ for SSE Report

Get the report Go to Products Overview
Netskope gartner mq 2022 sse leader
Gartner® Quick Answer: How Does Netskope’s Acquisition of Infiot Impact SD-WAN, SASE, and SSE Projects?

Get the report
Gartner quick answer
Netskope delivers a modern cloud security stack, with unified capabilities for data and threat protection, plus secure private access.

Explore our platform
Birds eye view metropolitan city
Make the move to market-leading cloud security services with minimal latency and high reliability.

Learn more
Lighted highway through mountainside switchbacks
Prevent threats that often evade other security solutions using a single-pass SSE framework.

Learn more
Lighting storm over metropolitan area
Zero trust solutions for SSE and SASE deployments

Learn more
Boat driving through open sea
Netskope enables a safe, cloud-smart, and fast journey to adopt cloud services, apps, and public cloud infrastructure.

Learn more
Wind turbines along cliffside
  • Our Customers

    Netskope serves more than 2,000 customers worldwide including more than 25 of the Fortune 100

  • Customer Solutions

    We are here for you and with you every step of the way, ensuring your success with Netskope.

  • Training and Certification

    Netskope training will help you become a cloud security expert.

We help our customers to be Ready for Anything

See our Customers
Woman smiling with glasses looking out window
Netskope’s talented and experienced Professional Services team provides a prescriptive approach to your successful implementation.

Learn more
Netskope Professional Services
Secure your digital transformation journey and make the most of your cloud, web, and private applications with Netskope training.

Learn more
Group of young professionals working
  • Resources

    Learn more about how Netskope can help you secure your journey to the cloud.

  • Blog

    Learn how Netskope enables security and networking transformation through security service edge (SSE).

  • Events & Workshops

    Stay ahead of the latest security trends and connect with your peers.

  • Security Defined

    Everything you need to know in our cybersecurity encyclopedia.

Security Visionaries Podcast

Episode 10: Building Security Relationships Through Transparency
In this episode, Mike and Andreas discuss aligning with works councils, forging business relationships through transparency, and embedding security into value streams.

Play the podcast
Building Security Relationships Through Transparency
Read the latest on how Netskope can enable the Zero Trust and SASE journey through security service edge (SSE) capabilities.

Read the blog
Sunrise and cloudy sky
Netskope at RSA

Join Netskope at RSA Conference this year and be part of the real conversations on SASE and Zero Trust. Stop by our booth in South Hall, chat with an expert, register for our speaking sessions, and unwind by joining us at one of our events!

Learn more
RSA logo
What is Security Service Edge?

Explore the security side of SASE, the future of network and protection in the cloud.

Learn more
Four-way roundabout
  • Company

    We help you stay ahead of cloud, data, and network security challenges.

  • Why Netskope

    Cloud transformation and work from anywhere have changed how security needs to work.

  • Leadership

    Our leadership team is fiercely committed to doing everything it takes to make our customers successful.

  • Partners

    We partner with security leaders to help you secure your journey to the cloud.

Netskope enables the future of work.

Find out more
Curvy road through wooded area
Netskope is redefining cloud, data, and network security to help organizations apply Zero Trust principles to protect data.

Learn more
Switchback road atop a cliffside
Thinkers, builders, dreamers, innovators. Together, we deliver cutting-edge cloud security solutions to help our customers protect their data and people.

Meet our team
Group of hikers scaling a snowy mountain
Netskope’s partner-centric go-to-market strategy enables our partners to maximize their growth and profitability while transforming enterprise security.

Learn more
Group of diverse young professionals smiling

Tracking COVID-19’s Effect on Remote Working by Industry and Geography

Aug 19 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic caused an abrupt and dramatic shift to remote work that has lasted five months so far and is expected to continue into 2021 as companies like Google have extended their work from home policies through July 2021. In this blog, we examine how geography and industry effect who works remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is the first in a series of three blog posts that explore the effects of COVID-19, detailing how it has changed remote work, user behavior, and attacker behavior.

Remote work

The COVID-19 pandemic caused a sudden shift to remote work in March 2020. Figure 1 shows the daily dispersion of users on the Netskope platform over the past year. User dispersion is the number of source IP addresses divided by the number of users. If the users are all on the same network, this number approaches 0%, and if all users are on different networks, this number approaches 100%. We use this number as a proxy for the percentage of users that are working remotely. The labeled spikes in the figure correspond to major holidays, on which fewer users tend to be active and those users that are active tend to work remotely.

The COVID-19 pandemic caused the number of people working remotely to increase by 148%.  Prior to the pandemic, 26% of users worked remotely on an average weekday. During the pandemic, this increased to 64%. The percentage of remote workers has remained steady over the past five months, indicating that users covered by the Netskope Security Cloud platform—primarily knowledge workers—have not been affected by the recent easing of restrictions. This trend indicates that knowledge workers are likely to continue working remotely in the coming months, and based on guidance from companies like Google, midway through 2021.

figure showing remote work percentages from the last 12 months
Figure 1. Remote work percentages over the year

Industry breakdown

The increase in remote work caused by the COVID-19 pandemic varies by industry sector. The Global Industry Classification Standard (GICS) defines 11 industry sectors. Figure 2 shows the median daily user dispersion before and after the pandemic declaration in each of the sectors. With the exception of “Information Technology” and “Real Estate” (the two sectors with the highest pre-COVID remote work percentages), the number of users working remotely in every sector more than doubled.  

“Energy” and “Health Care” trailed other sectors previously and continue to trail the other sectors during the pandemic. For many working in these sectors, their jobs have been classified as “essential.” Many in those sectors also work with specialized equipment that requires them to work from the office. As a result, we see fewer than half of all users working remotely in those sectors. At the other end, “Real Estate” users require no such specialty equipment, have not been classified as “essential,” and therefore see the highest remote work percentage.

Figure showing remote work percentages before and after COVID-19 by industry sector
Figure 2. Remote work percentages before and after COVID-19 by industry sector

Geography breakdown

The increase in remote work caused by COVID-19 also varies significantly geographically. In the U.S., the response is largely determined at the state and local level. Figure 3 shows a breakdown in remote work numbers for the top 10 U.S. states by number of users, with the remaining 40 combined as “Other” for comparison. While every state experienced an increase, the magnitude of the increase varied significantly. Washington and New York, two states that experienced early spikes in COVID-19 cases, responded with the highest percentage of remote workers. At the other end, Arkansas saw very few cases early on and has the lowest remote work percentage.

Figure showing remote work percentages before and after COVID-19 by census division
Figure 3. Remote work percentages before and after COVID-19 by census division

Data analysis

The analysis presented in this blog post is based on anonymized usage data collected by the Netskope Security Cloud platform relating to a subset of Netskope customers with prior authorization.


COVID-19 caused a sudden and dramatic increase in remote work that has sustained for five months and is poised to continue for many more. While this increase happened across the board, affecting information workers in all industries and all geographies, the magnitude of the effect varied significantly. Industries that have been deemed essential or require specialized equipment tend to have much lower remote work numbers compared to other industries, and regions more severely affected by the virus tend to have higher remote work numbers compared to those that have been relatively unaffected or have only recently begun to feel the effects.

The next installment in this series will explore in more detail how the increase in remote work has changed user behavior, including causing an increase in risky behavior. To learn more about recent trends in cloud adoption and security threats from the first half of 2020, please refer to our August 2020 Cloud and Threat Report.

author image
Ray Canzanese
Ray is the Director of Netskope Threat Labs, which specializes in cloud-focused threat research. His background is in software anti-tamper, malware detection and classification, cloud security, sequential detection, and machine learning.