The business world has changed a lot since the beginning of last year. Although working from home was already a growing trend, a majority of companies had yet to adopt a work from home business model. Fast forward to today, and more organizations than ever are allowing their workforce to telecommute.
While this solution provides many benefits, it doesn’t come without risk. Employees who work outside of the office are more prone to falling victim to a cyberattack than those inside the office. To protect your remote workforce from cyber threats, you need a strong work from home security strategy.
There are plenty of reasons a business may hesitate to go remote. One of the main reasons is the security issues associated with working remotely. The average household isn’t going to have the same level of security as a commercial office. This is why securing a remote work environment often presents a unique challenge for many IT departments.
So how do you maintain security when employees work remotely? The answer is to create a work from home policy that requires your staff to follow best practices. This way, your team can remain safe and secure. Here are some steps your workforce can take to prevent cyberattacks.
Your IT department implements various cyber security measures to keep your employees’ devices safe and secure. For example, they’ve likely installed firewalls and antivirus software on the office network. These tools are highly effective in stopping intrusion attempts. Knowing this, your first step should be to have your team install a firewall and download reliable antivirus software.
What’s the one thing every business has in common when it comes to cyber security posture? Employees are an organization’s biggest vulnerability. Even if you have the best firewall and monitoring services in the world, all it takes is for one person to make a mistake to bring your network crumbling down. That’s why training your employees in cyber security best practices is crucial to the protection of your business.
Through training, your staff can learn how to identify threats. They can also learn how to handle a threat if they encounter one. The better they understand what to avoid and the more they understand the processes they need to follow, the less likely they are to succumb to threats, such as viruses or phishing attacks. Not only will it keep them safe, but it will also keep your network safe.
Use a Virtual Private Network
As a rule of thumb, whenever your team uses an internet connection that’s outside of the office and that they don’t own, such as using their laptop at a coffee shop, they should be using a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN is a network that shields your activities from nosy interlopers by encrypting data and masking the internet protocol (IP) address. Your employees can access your network, but they are virtually untraceable by outsiders.
Use Secure Passwords
It’s tempting to use simple passwords, especially if you have to log into multiple accounts throughout the day. However, simple or easy-to-remember passwords defeat the purpose of having a password in the first place. A cyber criminal can hack a simple password in no time at all.
Passwords need to be complex and hard to guess. It’s best to use multiple characters, symbols, and numbers. If you’re afraid of forgetting your passwords, you could invest in a password manager, so you only need to remember one password.
A strong password is great, but it’s no longer enough to keep your virtual workforce protected. Encourage your staff to start using multi-factor authentication (MFA) with their logins. This is a solution that creates an additional layer of defense against unauthorized access attempts by requiring two or more forms of credentials.
Multi-factor authentication works by first asking for login information. Once that information is entered, the user is asked to submit another identifier. This may be something like a text message with a specific code sent to the user’s phone. Unless the cyber criminal has access to this additional credential, they won’t be able to access the account.
If you’re concerned about the security of your business, let Net3 IT help. We can perform an IT assessment to identify your system’s vulnerabilities. After the assessment, our team can provide recommendations that strengthen your protection.
To learn more about our comprehensive services, contact us today.
Since 2012, Net3 IT has offered enterprise-level IT experience and industry knowledge to help Knoxville businesses make the right decisions. We are committed to our customers’ success by providing cost-effective, high-value IT services, VOIP phone services, and strategic consulting.