Smartworking: how to mitigate cyber risks

Smartworking: how to mitigate cyber risks

Smartworking is a  fertile ground for cyber threats and criminals.

As steps to counter the coronavirus outbreak take effect, millions of workers across the globe have been sent home with their laptops many times.

Cybercrime is a silent actor that attempts to exploit the vulnerabilities of remote working.

Indeed, remote workers can potentially present a number of cybersecurity risks to organizations, and cybercriminals are finding more ways to exploit these weaknesses. With remote work, indeed, attack surfaces are be multiplied.

As users we should not never let the guard down.

A combination of procedures, tips, precautions, and training could mitigate risks to a great extent.  

Read more on our blog below!

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Smartworking: computer setting up

When smartworking, the golden rule says that organizations should provide hardware and software to their dependents.

In actual fact, indeed, that during the pandemic the world has registered a surge in cyberattacks.

If this is not possible and an organization plans or employees to use their own equipment, make sure that everything they use is up to the job.

This is what often happens with small or micro enterprises, worried for soaring costs.

In any case, bigger enterprises should  always give employees the appropriate and secure working tools.

Let’s explore what those that cannot afford IT equipment for their employ

First of all, as employer you should check that your employees’ hardware and operating system are enough secure for your type of activity. 

Make sure for instance that for installing and running the software your people will use. Also, if the machine they will be using is underpowered, users may struggle to run multiple business applications at once.

Do not forget that this is the very last option to undergo, however. Private hardware often lacks necessary hardening and security to protect work and sensitive business data from intrusion and violation. 

Finally, you should take similar precautions with your mobile equipment.

No ‘shadow’ IT!

A considerable share  sensitive enterprise data goes to the cloud in high or medium risk applications, not approved by their employers.

This practice refers to the term  ‘shadow IT’, whereby staff start using software for business purposes that IT department has not checked.

Failure to outline  the tech equipment they need, along with a whitelist of approved software poses a great risk. For instance, it could pave the way to adoption of apps that are vulnerable to exploits.

The pandemic has induced many businesses to perform collaboration, team management and communication software for the first time. Then, IT has the duty to ensure that deployed apps have end-to-end-to-end encryption, multifactor authentication and a good operational reputation.

Finally, businesses should provide secure connection. VPNs could secure connections from domestic router. Routers firmware should be updated to the latest version. Switching off WPS could enhance its security, too.

Conclusion : concluding remarks and other suggestions.

In conclusion, we have briefly outlined some suggestions that business could use to secure their employees when smartworking.

We also have additional suggestions. Remember that company security policies still apply even at home. Downloading forbidden and unsecure apps is not option. Do not visit off-limits websites too.

Secondly, make sure your passwords are strong. Two-factors identification is a great tool that could secure apps and accounts from unwanted access. Also use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols when setting passwords. And do not forget to change them regularly.

Last but not least, be aware of phishing. Have received an email from a delivery company urging to click on a link for something you have not ordered? This is a scam, do let them in your device, then!

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