The positives of remote work are so many that a lot of people forget about an essential factor; cybersecurity. Maintaining security while employees work remotely is undoubtedly difficult but necessary. The last thing you want is not taking all possible steps to avoid sensitive corporate data ending up in the wrong hands.
Thankfully, cybersecurity best practices for remote work are not secrets. All you need to do is find the information where it is. Venn does more than provide remote work security definition; we also offer the best cybersecurity tips. Therefore, this article will tell you all the best tips to maintain security when employees work remotely.
Why do you need to take cybersecurity seriously?
The most important reason to take cybersecurity seriously while working remotely is to protect corporate data.
Outside the office, employees generally lack the protection they can get from encrypted corporate networks. They often use unsecured home and public Wi-Fi networks susceptible to hacks. Some even use insecure devices to work remotely, raising the stakes for malicious attacks.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the rate of remote work and cyber-attacks has grown. Therefore, you need to take vital security measures to protect sensitive corporate information from these threats.
9 Tips to maintain security when employees work remotely
With the knowledge that there are cyber threats out there, you now need to know what security measures to take to avoid falling victim to them. Here are ten ways to maintain cybersecurity for remote work:
- Build a culture of cybersecurity
The most important step for maintaining cybersecurity when employees work remotely is to make them understand that they are responsible for keeping corporate data safe. That starts with building and entrenching a culture of cybersecurity. Employees should know that the freedom to work from home or anywhere does not mean they should be careless with company property.
They cannot carelessly operate work devices or access corporate data in a space without privacy. Also, remote workers cannot expose their work devices to other people. They may compromise corporate data security by doing these things and taking other careless actions.
You can hold regular security meetings to maintain this culture of cybersecurity. The knowledge will significantly reduce the risk of cyber-attacks.
- Monitor company-issued devices
Company-issued devices belong to the organization, and any work done on them should be for only corporate purposes. Monitoring such devices is a regular task of the IT department in the office, but this security measure takes the backseat when employees work remotely.
You shouldn’t let monitoring take a backseat in your company, even when employees work remotely. Ensure that they are using company-issued devices only for work. Also, the IT department should regularly monitor the devices for security threats and keep security software up to date. Remember that corporate data security supersedes any trust concerns about monitoring.
- Use cybersecurity software for BYOD or BYOPC practice
The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) or Bring Your Own PC (BYOPC) to work practice is getting increasingly popular. Allowing your employees to work remotely using their own devices or computers is incredibly convenient and flexible, but this practice poses significant risks.
Personal devices often lack the necessary security features to repel cyber-attacks. There’s also the risk of employees getting reckless with their personal devices and endangering corporate data.
If you have to not issue company-issued devices to employees, we recommend mandating the use of security software such as Venn software, which uses a secure enclave to isolate access to corporate data and apps from the rest of a device.
4. Create company security protocols
One of the best ways to get things done in a corporate environment is by creating and enforcing protocols. Creating a documented security strategy for employees working remotely will guide their conduct.
This strategy should feature dos and don’ts to prevent the exposure of sensitive information. It should also include how employees can handle cyber threats when they arise outside of the office.
5. Use cloud applications
Cloud services are a reliable tool to maintain security when employees work remotely. These services use robust data encryption technology to transfer sensitive information. So, instead of employees transferring files between themselves through a random file-sharing tool, they can share them through an encrypted network.
6. Utilize Virtual Private Networks (VPNs)
A VPN offers robust protection from malicious actors. Besides spoofing your location, the virtual network can prevent your online activity, including file transfers, from leaking. A VPN can also build firewalls around your device, protecting you from hackers even when using unsecured Wi-Fi networks.
7. Use unique passwords
The likelihood of a hacker cracking your password depends on its strength, uniqueness, and the number of characters. We recommend passwords with at least 12 characters, including letters (upper and lowercase), numbers, and special characters.
Also, employees should not reuse passwords for other accounts. They should use trustworthy password managers to save their passwords, and they won’t have to worry about forgetting them.
8. Install antivirus software
Malware is the software hackers use for phishing scams and many other attacks. You can block malware from your employees’ devices by installing robust antivirus software.
9. Avoid unsecured networks
Home and public Wi-Fi networks are often insecure. While it’s easy to avoid public networks or use them with a VPN, it’s difficult depending on a virtual network to use your home network every time. You can secure your home network by regularly updating your router’s firmware and security patches.
As the popular saying goes, forewarned is forearmed. It is easy to prevent cybersecurity risks when you know them and how to prevent them. These preventive measures are generally not out of reach and can help you avoid expensive trouble. So, we strongly advise that you strictly adhere to the security tips.