Remote working has undoubtedly helped us get through the pandemic by following the necessary social distancing protocol, but with this increased independence comes a greater need for security. The absence of foolproof cybersecurity measures in the employee’s remote workplace represents a serious threat to the security of information and data shared over unsecured networks.
Cybersecurity tips for remote workers
Some remote workers may have to use personal devices and networks for office work, and these devices may not be as well equipped with the proper security tools that are part of any office network or system.
This makes the security risks of remote work multiply. Additionally, any data leak can incur severe costs for organizations. Therefore, it becomes essential for employers to have a strong cybersecurity plan in place for their remote workers.
Here are some simple tricks to ensure that you, your remote employees, and the company are not at risk of data theft or email hacking.
Improve your cybersecurity by using VPN
The use of VPN is a must when operating from any public Wi-Fi network. These are non-secure networks with no firewalls between multiple users; they make you more vulnerable to being a victim of hacking attempts. VPN or Virtual Private Network is a private connection that accesses the Internet through a “third party” server instead of connecting directly to the destination network.
VPN provides secure, encrypted connections between the remote work location and headquarters using encrypted tunneling protocols supported by operating systems and devices.
Thus, it hides your online identity and Internet activities, protecting you against any malicious attempts by hackers.
Therefore, a VPN is the perfect solution for organizations looking for a cost-effective way to protect their data when on the go or when their employees are away from corporate networks by keeping remote employee access masked from hackers.
Another critical point to remember as part of remote work security best practices is to protect your home Wi-Fi network by turning on WPA2 encryption and choosing a strong password.
Pay attention to the use of strong passwords
Work to create stronger passwords and better passwords in general. For example, choose a long password with an arbitrary combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, special characters, and numbers.
Anything less is open to brute force attacks and can be easily hacked with a dictionary attack. More is always better! And don’t use the same password for multiple accounts (for example, your bank username and your online retailer’s username).
Another way to ensure password security is to use a management tool like LastPass or KeePass. These technologies will generate and store your passwords, so you only have to remember one master password for authentication. The best thing about these tools is that they are cross-platform, so you can use the same tool on Windows, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, and even Linux.
An additional layer of security can be added to your accounts by using two-factor authentication, which involves a two-step verification of a username or password. The second step requires verification using the code that was sent to you via email or phone messages.
Choose SSL encryption
An SSL or Secure Socket Layer certificate encrypts all communication between the user’s browser and the web hosting server. Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protects crucial user data from being stolen by hackers. A standard attack is called: Man-In-The-Middle attack.
SSL Secure Website uses the secure HTTPS protocol, which ensures the security of data exchanged between your web browser and any website you may be visiting.
You can purchase a cheap and cost-effective SSL certificate to secure your portal from a variety of options available from many reputable SSL certificate providers to suit your budget and security needs.
We can suggest you the RapidSSL authority that offers single domain and wildcard SSL certificates that are available at a low price. You can purchase RapidSSL Wildcard SSL for a single domain and multiple subdomains respectively.
Have web application firewall security
A firewall blocks any malicious code from entering your system at the same point of entry. It essentially forms the first protective layer against any malware attack. It helps prevent any data breaches or leaks of critical organization information from the remote worker’s device.
Make sure your operating system and router’s built-in firewalls are enabled to provide security for your device.
Using a web application firewall (WAF), a software application that monitors network traffic on an organization’s internal or external networks, will protect the organization’s applications from unauthorized users accessing or tampering with data.
Focus on remote employee training
Pay attention to training your remote workforce to follow cybersecurity best practices. Besides setting up the right security tools for employees, proper training is the other method to keep your information safe. By understanding the threats that could leak your organization’s data, employees will be able to protect data while working remotely.
Protect your systems with regular updates and backups
Updating your system should be the highest priority in your security policy. For example, if remote employees use an outdated operating system, various files and programs could be at risk. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that your system has the latest updates installed.
Make sure your devices are patched. Update your antivirus software regularly. Install antivirus on mobile devices, use security controls like encryption on removable media on laptops and email and documents on shared drives. Make sure all your devices including laptops, desktops, tablets, etc. have the latest patch installed.
Back up your data regularly, manually, or you can use automated data backups. It will minimize your downtime and help you restore your systems in the event of any cyber attack.
Be careful with phishing
You should always be alert and aware of phishing attacks from hackers. Emails, text messages, or even instant messages can be used to send phishing links or attachments; never click on them.
These emails appear to contain emergency messages from trusted sources like your organization or may be personal and may try to persuade you to click on a malicious link or share crucial login credentials. As part of a remote work team, you should delete such emails and pass them on to your IT department.
In conclusion, we can say that you should make your remote work safe by adopting these simple yet very effective cybersecurity tips and working on a hardened security policy for your organization.
Therefore, establish proper controls and procedures to ensure that you include all of the indicators mentioned above so that your company’s sensitive data is not compromised.
Employees at all levels must be motivated to follow these standards and best practices to protect against cyber attacks.
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