Cybersecurity and Remote Workers: Revisiting Your Company’s Security

Cybersecurity and Remote Workers: Revisiting Your Company’s Security

More and more, a remote workforce has become the norm in today’s business environment.

This move to work from home (WFH) has increased employee satisfaction and, depending on which report you read, increased employee productivity.

The trend to work from home was largely spurred on by the COVID pandemic when employers needed to quickly allow day-to-day operations to continue while providing safety for their staff from coming in contact with the virus. As a result, companies quickly established the infrastructure to support WFH, complete with VPNs, home office equipment, remote login capabilities for their staff, and more. Many of these modifications were performed quickly and under duress.

In this article, we ask businesses to reevaluate their security measures to ensure the safety of their employees, the company’s data, and the company itself.

Securing the employee’s environment

Many of the potential security challenges with a remote workforce come from the employee’s home office environment, where the employee is entrusted with sensitive company information and login access even though the company has no control over what happens at the remote location.

Some of the potential risks include:

  • Leaving their computer and other company assets unsecured where others can access them.
  • Using the company computer on the same WiFi network as their family’s other computers, games, phones, and various network-enabled devices around the home.
  • Practicing poor cybersecurity hygiene, such as using unencrypted files, weak passwords, and outdated virus protection.
  • No backup and recovery procedures.
  • Leaving printed company materials on their desk or not properly destroying them.
  • Using publicly accessible WiFi from stores, restaurants, and airports rather than a secure VPN or WiFi from their mobile devices.

Of course, failing to protect themselves from phishing attacks and email scams continues to be a problem for all companies.

Training your employees on proper cybersecurity hygiene has proven to be effective in preventing cyberattacks.

Securing the company’s network

In addition to securing the employee’s environment, it is also essential to ensure the company is secure. Securing the company’s network includes:

  • Ensuring all network and network-accessible devices are updated with the latest firmware and software.
  • Having a backup and restore procedure of all company data and intellectual property.
  • Establishing secure user roles and access privileges.
  • Monitoring and reporting suspicious access to company resources, such as login attempts outside normal business hours or from suspicious countries or IP addresses.
  • Establishing a threat detection and escalation procedure and training all employees to follow the procedure in the event of a cyberattack.
  • Have updated cyber insurance that covers incidents that are caused by remote staff.

Assess your risk

The security of your company’s network and resources should always be at the forefront of your mind. However, if it has been a while since you last revisited your company’s security policies, now is the time to take an inventory and make the necessary changes.

Equipping your employees with secure network devices and training them to watch out for common cyber attack techniques is among the best strategies for securing your company’s network, data, and employees.

Remember, you don’t have to do everything at once. Prioritize the most important activities and create and follow a plan to achieve your goals.

For more advice on securing your company’s assets from cybercriminals, download our free eBook, Cybersecurity Threats and Countermeasures: Protecting your company from external and internal threats, and call ArcherPoint when you need help deploying security solutions.

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