With the pandemic hitting countries like nothing we’ve ever known, many of the UK workforce has had to adapt and change and begin working from home. Although many are enjoying their new routines, it doesn’t come without its own challenges and risks.
And although many businesses are thriving and overcoming many of the hurdles faced, it can be easy to “drop the ball” and create an environment that’s incredibly attractive to cyber criminals. With IT departments facing an increased demand in remote working technologies and virtual private networks (VPN) to ensure their colleagues are working safely and securely, it’s much more challenging when it all has to be done from a distance.
What Are Some Of The Major Risks Of Working Remotely?
While many of us are enjoying our newfound work life balance, it doesn’t come without risks. Without the security protections that being in an office environment provides us – such as firewalls and blacklisted IP addresses – we’re far more vulnerable to cyber attacks than we might think.
The most obvious of all the risks is that many of us rely on the internet and the web to complete most of our day to day tasks. If something is housed on the internet, there’s always a possibility of a cybercriminal attacking it.
Whether this is by cracking your password or phishing emails, it’s important to be as vigilant as possible and report anything suspicious to your IT departments.
Unfortunately, user error also plays a large part in many cyber-attacks. According to a recent article by business advisor RSM, human error was involved in over 80% of security incidents. However, although this may be the case, one of the best ways to prevent these kinds of malicious attacks, is to ensure your workforce is provided with the tools to protect themselves.
What Can Businesses Do For Their Employees?
As many of the UK workforce remains to operate from home, it’s a good idea to take a look at your processes and procedures to make sure they’re reflective of this new working from home situation. RSM have provided a number of ways in which your business can be one step ahead at all times.
Get a remote working security policy in place and ensure your employees have read it and know where it is to refer to. You could even run training or refresher courses to discuss the threats that they may be exposed to during the pandemic.
Another major step you may need to introduce is an incident management process. Escalating any security incidents up the ladder of command is crucial. It allows the right people to act fast and ensure the threat is taken care of quickly and effectively. If you already have something like this in place, now is the right time to make everyone in your company aware of it, or at least provide a refresher session.
Be Prepared For Every Eventuality
While you can’t be prepared for absolutely everything, you can be ahead of the criminals in many ways. By following these procedures and implementing changes within your business, you can help to keep your data, employees and customers safe from attacks.