IT Security Tips for Remote Workforce

Across the globe, millions of employees are being advised to work from home in response to the pandemic. That said, switching to a remote work setup can heighten security risks for the organisation because remote work environments do not usually have the same level of security as in the office. It is crucial that both employers and employees do not overlook the security and technical implications whilst working remotely.

Here are the best practices to maintain productivity, while ensuring a secured business operation functioning outside of the office.

Best Practices for Remote Workers

Here are the best actions remote employees should take to safeguard their company’s data.

Workspace

  • Assess your physical workplace and if possible, choose a separate room as dedicated workspace
  • Do not allow family members to use your work devices
  • Lock your screen when you walk away
  • Make privacy a priority

Devices

  • Use a Work-Only Device, If Possible
  • Ensure all security settings are configured to run updates automatically
  • Install anti-virus and enable auto updates
  • Turn on your computer’s firewall
  • Use password managers with end-to-end AES256 bit encryption
  • Enable two-factor authentication and use an authenticator app
  • Use your phone for 2FA
  • Use SSH keys
  • Encrypt sensitive information
  • Change your passwords on a regular basis
  • Only use company-approved programs
  • Hide confidential information when taking screenshots
  • Save all work data in a secure location approved by the company
  • Always have multiple back-ups of your important files
  • Avoid clicking on pop-ups, unknown emails, and links
  • Prevent External Device Attachment

Network

  • Make sure you are using a secure connection
  • Avoid using public networks
  • Use company-authorised virtual private network to encrypts all communications
  • Secure your wireless router
  • Make sure all internet-enabled devices are updated

Communications

  • Turn off webcam and microphone access for apps that you do not use for work
  • Use headphones to prevent others from listening in on your conversations.
  • Always check email senders before opening email content.
  • Reach out to your IT department when you encounter anything suspicious or need help

Best Practices for Employers

As a business owner, it is smart to learn about cybersecurity best practices and share it with your employees to protect your organisation.

  • Determine what endpoint protection you will require for remote workers
  • Ensure that employees are using only company-authorised virtual private network (VPN) solutions
  • Turn on multi-factor authentication (MFA)
  • Enforce strong authentication policies
  • Provide a cloud-based file storage where remote workers can store company’s data
  • Restrict installation/usage of unauthorised tools
  • Setup file access restrictions
  • Setup reasonable session timeouts for sensitive programs or applications
  • Write and enforce a remote work policy
  • Conduct cyber security training for employees
  • Educate employees on common cyberattacks
  • Encourage employees to be cautious, suspicious and vigilant
  • Be aware of evolving threats

Organisations that seek to understand the heightened security risk of remote workforce and take steps to address it will improve their privacy and safety online against cyber criminals.

Talk to us today to see how we can improve the security of your business to navigate the cyber security risks of the modern business world.

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