Expanding talent acquisition beyond the local pool is increasingly becoming a norm as businesses seek to grow their human resource infrastructure with distributed teams. Remote teams can now be stretched across the globe operating across different time zones. Telecommuting to work has been on the rise since 2006 with the recent COVID-19 pandemic further pushing up the number of employees working from remote locations.
With employees connecting to business data from varying locations, the risk of a bad agent gaining access is all too real. A research conducted by CybSafe revealed that every third business has suffered a data breach thanks to its remote workforce, all in a period of 12 months. According to Shred-It’s 2018 State of the Industry Report, 86% of business executives believe remote workers increase a company’s chances for a data security breach. So how do you keep your business data secure while still enjoying the benefits of a remote workforce. Here are five ways you can make it possible.
Establish a Cyber Security Policy
Your employees are your first line of defence when it comes to cybersecurity. To start, decision makers should educate their employees on the basics of data security. A cybersecurity policy will divide the onus of learning and being responsible for data security across the management and employees. Cybersecurity training courses such as KnowBe4 can play a significant role in spreading awareness.
Ensure Secure Internet Connections
Unsecured wireless networks are a breeding ground for data breach. While it is impossible to ensure all remote workers sign-in to business network only through secure internet connections, requiring employees to use VPNs before accessing business data is a seamless way to ensure access encryption.
Educating employees on the importance of strong passwords can be an added step in a company’s cybersecurity training. Strong passwords are a relatively easy way to ensure data security. Organizations can also mitigate access risks by deploying password manager which generates random passwords further easing this process.
Using Encryption Software
Encrypting critical business data using encryption software is another way companies can safeguard their data. This will also mitigate physical access risk in the event of devices or files being stolen or lost.
Firewalls, Antivirus Software and Anti-Malware
Requiring remote workers to have up-to-date firewalls, anti-virus software and anti-malware on all their devices and phones is paramount when accessing or storing business data. Companies may also want to consider remote disk wiping capabilities in the event of a theft or loss of the device. Mobile device management platforms can assist in performing these functions.
While working from home may bring with it a laundry list of unique challenges and problems, trying to cope with remote workers under pressure with unprecedented provisions like in the present crisis scenario is a whole different enterprise. Businesses today thus need a unified team dedicated to their data security who possess the capabilities and the tools to aggressively monitor, prevent and combat security breaches.
CSG Technologies can help your employees, partners and customers securely access critical systems and applications regardless of their physical location. Our end-to-end security protocol will enable your business to continue growing even during a crisis such as the present.