Guide to Keeping Your Company’s Remote Workers Safe Online

Numerous businesses and entities are facing challenges when it comes to guaranteeing the security of their remote workforce. Given the growing danger of cyber threats, coupled with the absence of physical IT assistance, it is crucial for both employers and employees to take appropriate measures to safeguard their interests.

Clearly, not all individuals will exhibit the same level of comprehension or attitude towards cyber security, even if some may possess superior technological skills than others. Hence, it becomes vital to provide optimal protection to remote workers and arm oneself with the most efficient resources to counter any probable cyber attack. In this regard, the following techniques have been proven to be successful in ensuring a company’s security while the proprietor is absent.

Recognize Hazards

Email is a frequent tool employed by cyber attackers for infiltration, and certain risks may be challenging to discern. For instance, emails that appear to provide complimentary vacations are generally deceptive, but others can be trickier to recognise. It is crucial to exercise caution and acknowledge the potential hazards that emails may present.

As per the 2023 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR), 94% of malware infiltration occurred through email, thus making workers of all ranks vulnerable to attack. Since staff members cannot interact with one another as effortlessly as they would in a standard office setup, such email attacks are likely to be more effective than usual at the present time.

If you receive an email from an unfamiliar or doubtful source, it is advisable to be exceedingly careful. There are various pointers that can help in detecting malicious emails, however, it is crucial to stay alert and watch out for the following indications:

  • Email addresses that comprise of additional characters
  • Improper use of language and spelling errors
  • Heightened sense of urgency
  • Email attachments that are irrelevant to the message being conveyed

In light of the new remote working paradigm and the need for safeguarding remote workers, it becomes crucial to recognise the commonplace methods used in phishing emails. Hence, refreshing one’s memory on such topics is imperative.

In the event of any uncertainty regarding the legitimacy of an email, it is suggested to contact the IT personnel at the organisation and voice the concerns. Companies are taking numerous precautions to counter potential risks, such as the incorporation of Identity and Access Management solutions. This encompasses systems such as single sign-on, multi-factor authentication, and zero-trust access. It is crucial to acknowledge that a thoughtless blunder by an employee could result in security concerns throughout the enterprise.

Ensure Strong Passwords

In protecting the data of remote workers, an organisation’s password management approach is critical, since a single compromised password could potentially jeopardise the entire system. Unfortunately, many individuals do not fully realise the significance of passwords. As per a Google survey, 52% of users use the same password across various accounts. Subsequently, if there occurs a security breach on one site, the attacker can access all other accounts linked to the same password.

Several organisations have embraced password management solutions like LastPass to fulfil their password management requirements. These solutions make it convenient to maintain distinct password vaults, add or remove staff members, and sync across devices in the cloud, thereby streamlining the process. As passwords are highly susceptible to cybercriminals, it is imperative to accord importance to their protection for remote workers.

Ensure Regular Equipment Upgrades

Software incompatibility is a frequent cause of cybersecurity issues with 27% of respondents reporting in a Tripwire poll that their workplace has endured a data breach due to a vulnerability that was not patched. This percentage rises to 34% in Europe. As technologies progress and grow at varying rates, it is vital to ensure that systems receive regular updates to avert security threats.

In safeguarding the data of remote employees, it is imperative to ensure that all hardware and software remain up-to-date. Regular updates or patches should be installed to address any discovered security vulnerabilities. To ensure optimal computer performance, firms should encourage the observation of updates and frequent computer reboots.

Postponing the installation of system updates can be attractive as it may necessitate a computer restart. Nevertheless, failing to install updates for a prolonged duration can cause severe problems for the organisation. Establishing a culture of robust cybersecurity procedures can assist in developing positive behaviours and conserving resources for the enterprise.

The Importance of Cybersecurity for Remote Workers

It is crucial that all personnel comprehend the significance of complying with the cybersecurity guidelines for remote workers. As per a study conducted by Shred-it, a document shredding enterprise, 96% of Americans think that employee carelessness is a cause of data breaches at US corporations. If the workforce does not value the training or does not adhere to the policies, a company’s endeavours to educate them will be futile.

Apart from participating in external cybersecurity courses, it is recommended to create a customised small business cybersecurity checklist that meets your requirements. This list should be stored in a centralised and easily accessible location, and encompass not only the standard procedures that should be implemented, but also any fresh procedures that the company may introduce. These may include mandating password policies, utilising company-provided devices, and avoiding the use of public Wi-Fi. Additionally, documenting all of these details in a comprehensive guide or manual can help decrease the possibility of erroneous information being disseminated and simplify subsequent training sessions.

To exhibit their dedication to the matter and allow their personnel to enhance their knowledge, enterprises may consider enriching their employees’ knowledge with regular cybersecurity training.

A recent study conducted by the Information Systems Security Association (ISSA) concluded that 36% of the respondents believed their employer should provide more cybersecurity training, with almost a third stating that much more training was required. It is crucial that all staff members, irrespective of their designation, possess a fundamental comprehension of cybersecurity, although certain positions may necessitate a more extensive comprehension.

Any business, irrespective of its size, should not disregard cybersecurity for remote workers. A study conducted by Fundera disclosed that “43% of cyberattacks are aimed at small businesses,” even though some owners believe that their company is too trivial to be hacked. This indicates a remarkable 424% escalation from the prior year, and could be attributed to smaller establishments generally having less cybersecurity measures and being more prone to attacks.

It is feasible to lower the likelihood of successful phishing attacks by imparting training to employees to identify potential threats and ensuring they remain alert when working remotely. Instituting rigorous password policies can assure that everyone adheres to the necessary security standards. Outmoded hardware may still be susceptible to exploits from outdated software, but this can be rectified by regular updates. Refining employee education and comprehension of the significance of cybersecurity and its execution can facilitate collaboration.

It is of utmost importance that your enterprise and its staff are outfitted with the requisite security provisions to defend their data within the digital domain, as this is crucial for the advancement and triumph of the business. Since remote work continues to expand, the significance of guaranteeing that these provisions are instituted for all personnel is preeminent.

If you require guidance on efficient remote working methods, feel free to reach out to us. Our services have empowered numerous enterprises to locate, employ, and retain outstanding IT experts worldwide, for better management of their remote workforce.

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