Millions of companies have shifted office work to work from home in this pandemic time. It’s crucial to consider the consequences of access to internal IT infrastructure, systems access, data repatriation, and bandwidth costs.
Essentially, what this means is that when the employee remotely accesses the data, the risk to that data increases.
Most of the time, the risk is only between the internal network, server, and end-user device. While external working contributes to the risks that include local networks, public internet, and consumer-grade security systems.
The following are some of the strategies to minimize these data security risks.
Your company needs to audit passcodes for all employees. This does not mean demanding personal information from users, but it helps in redefining and resetting passcodes that are used to access specific business services in accordance with the strict security policy.
Alphanumeric codes, the use of two-factor authentication, should become obligatory. Moreover, you should ask your team members to protect all the devices with the toughest protection possible. You should also ensure that all of your business-critical passwords are stored securely.
Employees working from home must be provided with essential safety advice. This knowledge sharing activity will help all employees to guard against any type of cyberattacks, phishing emails, public Wi-Fi, to ensure that home Wi-Fi networks are adequately secured and to verify the safety of the devices they use to get work done.
Employees should be particularly advised to avoid clicking links in the emails from people they don’t know and to stay safe from the cyberattacks carried out by other countries.
They also need to know basic security advice, and it’s also vital to have an emergency response team in place at your business. People need to know who to contact in the event they detect a security anomaly.
One way to secure the endpoints for the employee is to ensure that the sensitive information is not stored locally. Data storage should be cloud-based wherever possible. Not only that, but employees should be encouraged to use cloud-based apps as well. It’s also essential that any third-party cloud storage services must be verified by the network and security team.
Make sure to use backup tools, where appropriate, would be helpful. Otherwise, you should encourage employees to use external drives to back up computers. If you are using a mobile device management (MDM) or enterprise mobility management (EMM) software, automatic backups can be initiated through the management console of your system.
It may be sensible to install an EMM or MDM system. It will make the provision and management of your device fleet much easier, while also separating corporate data from personal data. These solutions also provide better control of device and Mac security.
One way to secure data is to use a VPN that will help employees to keep their data encrypted. It also helps in masking and hiding the IP address.
Make sure that the state-of-the-art security protection is installed and active on any devices that are used for work. That means there should be firewalls, virus checkers, and device encryption in the palace.
Encourage the employees to update their applications to the new version that the company’s security strategy supports. (Some companies lag behind the Apple software release schedule, however, most don’t.) Also, activate automatic updates on all of your devices.
Trip your teams by ensuring that the operational roles are shared between teams. Also, ensure that you are implementing contingency plans now in case key staff get sick. Assign and duplicate all security management, tech support, passwords, failsafe roles, and essential codes.
Not every employee will have their Wi-Fi router reset to the default password. If you have an IT support team, then it should become a priority to provide telephone guidance to secure home routers. You don’t want to subject your information to a man in the center, data sniffing, or some other form of assault.
You may also need to make payment arrangements for any excess bandwidth used, as not all broadband connections are equal. In the current crisis, some (most recently, AT&T) are making positive sounds about enhancing available data packages.
With a passion for working on disruptive products, Anas Baig is currently working as a Product Lead at the Silicon Valley based company – SECURITI.ai. He holds a degree of Computer Science from Iqra University and specializes in Information Security & Data Privacy.