Remote Workforce or not – you can securely protect and back up your corporate information
One of the most common objections heard when talking with businesses about moving towards a remote work strategy is the supposed security risks posed by not having all data contained within the physical confines of the office building. While this has widely been debunked, the myth still remains. But the tide may be moving in the other direction now that many businesses were forced to move to an entirely remote workforce during the COVID-19 shutdown. CNBC has reported that 85% of businesses are now operating 50% of their workforce remotely, and with tech giants Twitter and Facebook both reporting plans to move towards a continued remote strategy, the reality is that remote work in a larger capacity is going to become the norm instead of the exception. Now is the time to prepare for the “new normal” that will become our reality.
Sadly, along with the threat of COVID-19, cyberattacks have grown as attackers realize that home networks are not as secure as corporate networks. However, security and back up firm Acronis shares 5 things that you can do to protect your business data moving forward with a remote work strategy.
5 “Must Do’s” According to Acronis
Acronis is a leading cloud backup and security provider and one that we recommend widely to all of our customers. They list 5 “must do’s” as you set up your remote workforce, and as always, we are here to help you put these processes in place.
Must-Do #1: VPN – or Virtual Private Network. You have most likely heard of this technology as it has been around for a while. But if not, a VPN will encrypt all data while in transit to protect it from cyberattackers.
Must-Do #2: Keep an eye out for phishing. Hackers are known for taking advantage of highly stressful events and we have seen an increase of COVID-19 themed phishing attempts and we expect this number to continue to rise as businesses reopen. The best and most reliable way to prevent a phishing attack from affecting your business is through effective employee training. As another protective measure, you can install URL filtering software on your employees laptop or home computer to further reduce the risks of falling victim. Acronis says, however, that you should always ask yourself if you were really expecting that email before opening or clicking any links contained in the message.
Must-Do #3: Anti-Malware protection has always been a standard recommendation, but with the wide net that is cast with wide-spread remote work, it has become even more important for every endpoint that touches your corporate data has this protection installed on it.
Must-Do #4: Patch, patch, and patch some more. Regardless of your operating system, whether it be Microsoft or Apple, you need to ensure that you are operating under the most recent operating system. Many attacks occur by taking advantage of unpatched vulnerabilities.
Must-Do #5: Keep your password, and your workspace, to yourself. Just because the office location is at home does not automatically mean people can’t access sensitive information when you step away. Limit access to your computer even when you are at home and do not tell anyone your passwords.
Prepare for the future now
There is no question that the future we anticipated at the close of 2019 is different than the one that will ultimately surface. By making the assumption that remote work will continue to be the norm instead of a return to the standard office environment will help your business be agile and meet challenges head-on.
Mike Della Pia is the President of LAN Masters, Inc., an Orlando IT support company that has been helping small businesses stop focusing on IT and getting back to doing business the past 15 years. Connect with Mike on LinkedIn.