While remote working is highly flexible, it comes with a fair share of risks, especially concerning cyber security. 3 dos and don’ts to help employees and companies stay protected while working remotely are discussed in this post.
The advancements in digital technologies have paved the path for businesses to operate remotely. While remote working was already a raging trend before 2020, the global health crisis made it the go-to solution for enterprises to continue their operations. Moreover, as per a survey, 95% of Indian firms will continue with remote work for the next two years.
But while the remote working arrangement is highly flexible, cyber security remains a cause of concern. Here are 3 dos and don’ts for employees and companies to stay protected while working remotely-
- Consider Using Business VPNs
VPNs are commonly used for connecting to company networks when working remotely. While reputed VPN providers take adequate security measures, there are several free VPNs that do not. There are also fake VPNs created for the sole purpose of stealing user data.
Enterprises should invest in genuine business VPN solutions and ensure that the employees only use the same when working remotely for data security.
- Secure Home Wi-Fi
Employees rely on home Wi-Fi when working remotely. Strengthening the security of the home network is one of the easiest ways to avoid cyber risks. Simple measures like choosing a strong Wi-Fi password, enabling network encryption, and limiting network access to selected MAC addresses can significantly improve network security.
By visiting the settings page of the router, users can also check whether or not they are using the latest firmware version. Updated versions often come with patches for security concerns.
- Use a Separate Device for Work
Personal devices do not have the tools that have been put in place by a company, like an antivirus software, automatic backup software, customized firewall, etc. Without these safety measures, a personal device can be a hotspot for malware attacks and data leaks.
If possible, then invest in a separate device for work or personal use. If that is not possible, then consider security measures like firewalls, VPN, and antivirus software for added safety.
- Avoid Using Messaging Apps for Sharing Business Information
Messaging apps such as WhatsApp, Telegram, or social platforms like Facebook and Instagram should never be used for sharing business information with co-workers or clients.
There are dedicated business messaging platforms that make digital communication simple while also ensuring enhanced safety.
- Never Open Email Attachments from Unknown Senders
According to a Verizon study, emails are responsible for 94% of the malware threats and 90% of data breaches that occur through phishing. One of the easiest ways to avoid the same is to ignore emails that come from unknown senders and never click on any attachments that come in such emails.
Block unfamiliar senders, create back-ups, and regularly update the operating system, browser, and plug-ins to protect yourself against malware attacks and data leaks.
- Do Not Ignore the Remote Work Policy
To minimize cyber security risks as an organization, it is essential to work on a remote working policy. Cover topics such as compliance requirements, data protection, backup, storage, remote access, and information disposal to help the team members with risk management.
Businesses can also consider providing cyber security training to ensure that the team members are well aware of the common threats and how to respond to a cyber attack.
Utmost Protection Against Cyber Security Risks When Working Remotely
The remote working model has introduced a host of new cyber vulnerabilities. While following the best cyber security practices can help minimize the associated risks, businesses need more than the basic protocols to respond and recover from cyber-attacks.
Cyber security consultants can strategize custom cyber security policies to minimize vulnerabilities and bridge security gaps to ensure safety and avoid cyber risks. With a custom cyber security strategy in place, businesses can continue to excel irrespective of whether they’ve adopted office, remote, or hybrid work models.