Cybersecurity tips for business became the rally cry in recent months as enterprises increasingly embraced the idea of remote work partly because of the COVID-19 pandemic. To ‘Work from Home’ (WFH) means to work remotely as opposed to commuting to work in an office. Enterprises embraced the flexible WFH model to ensure business continuity even as mobility and activities are crippled in this COVID-19 era.
Despite the surge of the WFH model in recent times, the model isn’t new in the labor world. According to reports by Gallup in 2017, 43 percent of employed Americans work remotely. This was an increase of four percent from the data released in 2012.
However, the remote work model isn’t without its troubles. WFH encourages employees to use their devices, technology tools, and even network facilities. This increases the risk of security breaches and malware attacks due to the use of unsecured technological tools and/or networks.
As your business, team, and employees are having to adjust to work-from-home. Here are the top cybersecurity tips for businesses to keep your workforce safe.
Benefits of Working from Home
Organizations and business enterprises have largely embraced the flexible WFH working model. Do you want to know what makes the model attractive? First, let’s examine the benefits of working from home.
- Flexible working: This tops the list and is an obvious rationale behind the concept of working from home. WFH, otherwise called telecommuting or virtual working, allows employees to work from anywhere including their ‘comfort’ zones like their homes. This arrangement helps to increase the focus of employees and invariably their productivity.
- It enhances productivity: In a study by Gallup, 14 percent of American workers spend an average of 45 minutes commuting to work. This figure was also reported to affect the overall health of workers and by extension their productivity. However, virtual working allows people to focus solely on their work without the hassle of commuting and traffic-induced fatigue.
- It saves money: With telecommuting, there’s less need to commute or travel to work regularly or even at all. Therefore, allowing workers to save a few bucks that would otherwise have been spent on travel expenses and/or other trivial work-related expenses such as fancy clothes and lunch food is an advantage.
- Better work-life balance: It allows employees to work efficiently without upsetting the family life balance. This is particularly beneficial for new parents. It also contributes to the overall health of workers thus improving their productivity
- It saves time: In metropolitan cities, traffic congestion is one of the nightmares employees face while commuting to work. It contributes significantly to their stress level and wastes valuable work time. With commuting off the charts, workers’ focus is solely on working efficiently. the advantages of WFH cannot be overemphasized.
If your business already enjoys these benefits of the WFH model or you’re willing to take advantage of it, there are some extra things you need to know
Security Tips for Remote Workers
Remote workers are often more vulnerable to security threats. This is because they’re more likely to use unauthorized and/or unsecured public networks and devices for data transfer and communication.
If you’re a business owner or an employee that works remotely, these cybersecurity tips are tailored to help you secure your devices and networks.
- Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN): A VPN is a private network that allows users to connect to the internet safely and securely. Essentially, a VPN ensures that private information is kept private by ensuring data encryption, hiding your IP address, and masking your location. For people that work from home, there are few better ways to ensure maximum security than installing a VPN. Adding a VPN on your personal devices will ensure your digital device is encrypted against unauthorized use.
- Use Two-factor Authentication (2FA): This is also known as two-step verification or dual-factor authentication, it’s a security process that mandates users to provide two different authentication factors for their account verification. With 2FA, you’re armed with an additional layer of security to secure your virtual account.
- Use Strong Passwords: The importance of using strong passwords can’t be overemphasized. In this regard, it’s advisable to use separate passwords for personal accounts and business or work accounts/devices. With an increase in fraudulent activity through password breaching, using weak passwords or the same passwords across multiple accounts and devices (including your business account) makes you vulnerable to security threats.
- Cloud Backup: For optimal security, organizations should ensure that employees store and backup their data and files to cloud computing services such as Mobile Management Devices (MDM) instead of external devices or personal mobile devices. External storage devices such as external hard drives, floppy discs, and flash drives can host malware attacks and can easily get broken or stolen, thereby increasing the risk of a data breach.
Cybersecurity Tools for Business
Having explored cybersecurity tips for businesses and employees. It’s important to have a good grasp of the cybersecurity software tools that can be used to ensure privacy and security. Some of the best cybersecurity tools are listed below:
- Mobile Hotspots: Fast and reliable network access is essential for virtual workers. Mobile hotspots such as Mifi are pocket-friendly secured hotspot devices that offer secured internet access on the go. If you’re looking to get a Mifi device, kindly liaise with your service provider for the best plan and device that suits you.
- Cloud Storage: Cloud storage or cloud back-ups allows you to access and sync your data effortlessly. Examples of reliable cloud storage apps are:
- Google Photos: Useful for storing photos, videos, Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides.
- OneDrive: Recommended for Microsoft Office and Windows users.
- Dropbox: It offers fast syncing of data over the local network.
- iCloud Drive: Suitable for iOS and Mac users.
- Sync: Suitable for unlimited file sizes.
- Security Tools: Ensuring security and privacy should be your foremost priority if you work remotely. Here are selected tools that will aid your course
- Encryption: Ensure that you encrypt your data with good encryption software in the event of a third-party breach. With encryption, access to your data files is impossible without the encryption key or password. Windows’ built-in BitLocker or Mac OS X’s FireVault are good encryption tools.
- Password Manager: These tools come in handy to manage your passwords by saving them in an encrypted database
- Antivirus Software Tools: These tools allow you to block malware and detect deadly viruses that can corrupt your files and expose you to cyber threats.
- Video Conferencing Apps: These video apps allow you to have a face-to-face connection with your employers and work colleagues. Common video conferencing apps like Zoom, Skype, and Microsoft Teams are recommended to allow you to keep up-to-date via video and audio calls.
As you work remotely, you need to work with secured devices and networks to avoid security breaches. Choosing the suitable software tools and security solutions for digital devices can be a daunting task for people who aren’t tech-savvy. RSI Security is a leading cybersecurity company that’s always ready to help you and your organization choose the best cybersecurity tools to mitigate potential risks when working from home.
At RSI Security, we specialize in guiding against advanced threats on networks. Our security experts provide security solutions such as incident response, intrusion detection, and antivirus software tools. Our trusted professionals are equipped with the technical know-how and experience to provide recommendations and tools that’ll ensure maximum security while ensuring compliance with industry standards.
Contact us today! To ensure that you work seamlessly with secured networks, needed to maintain core business needs and advance your organization.
Work From Home Cybersecurity Checklist
Review the best practices to keep your remote workforce safe and secure. Rest easy and give your clients the assurance they need that their information will be safe with you by implementing cybersecurity best practices as your employees work from home. Upon filling out this brief form you will receive the checklist via email.