3 Cybersecurity mistakes your remote workforce is making | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

GUEST OPINION: Did you know that around a third of U.S. workers who can work from their residences do just that all the time?

According to Pew Research Center, around three years after the global pandemic hit U.S. workplaces hard, 35% of employees with positions that can be done remotely are plying their trade remotely 100% of the time. Meanwhile, 41% of people with jobs that can be done from home spend some of their time in an office and some of their time in their home office.

You’ll want to implement proper security protocols whether workers are at home, on vacation, or on their way to speak to the property manager overseeing their investment property. In other words, you need to ensure your employees are staff no matter where they are.

Remote workers are often guilty of making cybersecurity mistakes that can leave them and your company vulnerable to cyberattacks. The online threat landscape is fierce. So, your business will want to ensure remote workers follow the same rules as in-house workers. 

Here’s a look at three cybersecurity errors remote workers often make — and what to do about it.

1. Falling for Phishing Attempts

Has your company educated workers about proper email practices? If not, you could be setting your workers up for failure. And if they fall for phishing exploits, that could wreak havoc across your entire organization. Poor email practices can place your business’ data at risk since the nefarious actors who get a hold of your data can create breaches that can cause untold damage.

Ensure you invest time in educating workers about how to spot phishing and how to avoid it. Here’s a look at five specific things that can be done to keep remote workers safe from phishing.

1. Stay Informed: Keep employees informed about the latest phishing techniques. Security awareness training is also essential. And there should also be refresher courses.

2. Be Careful Where You Click: Employees need to understand that they can’t just click on any links they find. It’s a good idea to avoid dubious links and downloading unless there’s certainty about who the sender is.

3. Use Firewalls: Ensure workers have desktop firewalls and network firewalls to help ward off phishing and hacking attacks.

4. Avoid Giving Out Personal Data: It should be a given that workers ought not to share personal data over the internet, phone, or other means. 

5. Install Antivirus Software: Getting employees to install antivirus software on their computers and mobile devices is a must. It’s also essential to ensure they’re up to date.

2. Alternating Between Work and Personal Equipment

Remote workers can run into problems when they alternate between work and home equipment. Workers might store sensitive data on a personal laptop that doesn’t have the protection — like proper firewall settings and antivirus software — that their work laptops have. 

If your workplace installs enterprise-level security software on laptops and tablets, you need your workers to use those workplace-issued tools. But some workers might simply switch between personal equipment and work equipment without so much as a second thought. 

Your company needs to forbid the use of personal equipment for workplace tasks or devise a way to safeguard personal computers. This can be done by providing software to protect personal equipment or using cloud-based solutions to safeguard corporate data.  

3. Failing to Install Security Software

Yet another mistake that remote workers often make is not installing security software. Timely downloads of updates and patches are essential, but many remote workers might put these things on the back burner. It’s best, therefore, to automate rollout so that it’s done automatically.

These are the types of mistakes your remote workers may be making. It’s important to correct these and other cybersecurity mistakes to reduce the risks to your workers and company. Remote working is here to stay, so it’s up to businesses and their workers to make it work.


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National Cyber Security