Remote Work and Cybersecurity Risks

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Remote work is no longer an option but a necessity to keep your business operations running smoothly during the coronavirus outbreak. Nevertheless, working through a virtual environment has its own drawbacks, which can lead to serious security issues. So, if your business is going through the sudden transition from on-premise work culture to remote work culture, then you need to plan suitable cybersecurity measures.

With the rapid increase in the number of supply chain and ransomware attacks, organizations need to focus on enhancing their security measures. At Fervimax, we help businesses plan and implement suitable security measures to counter cybersecurity risks within and outside the network perimeter. Our Experts do this by analyzing the entry points and restricting access to them. These measures help prevent data leaks and preserve data integrity of your corporate assets.


How Remote Work Causes Security Risks

Businesses thrive on data and that explains why you need to fortify your corporate assets before its too late. Cybercriminals are always on the prowl looking for vulnerabilities that allow them to break into a private network. As your employees work from home, you lose control over the technologies that they make use of, such as the Operating System, Application version, or other technologies that they use. Especially, if your employees are making use of their personal computers, and not the corporate laptops. This increases the attack surface and makes the entire network even more susceptible to attacks. Since you have no direct control over your employees, the best course of action is to fortify the security of your corporate data. Below listed are some easy to implement security measures that can help prevent security risks while your employees are working from home.


Limit Access to Corporate Assets

Since your organization’s database is one of your most valued assets, you must restrict the number of employees who can access it. Unless you do that, it could lead to multiple entry points through which threat actors may break into your network. However, when you limit it, then you are making it difficult for cybercriminals to break into your network.


Use VPN to Secure Internet Connection

Usually, Remote employees make use of private or public internet connections which may not necessarily be safe. The public WiFi can be intercepted by hackers and must, therefore, be avoided at all costs. On the other hand, your remote employee could be using an internet connection that he or she shares with other family members who may have accidentally installed malware on their devices. So, private internet connections can also be susceptible to cyberattacks. However, this can be overcome by making it mandatory for your remote employees to use a virtual private network (VPN) to access the internet. This masks the Internet Service Provider (ISP) when the data is transmitted from the employee’s system and only reveals the VPN that the user is connected to.


Zero trust architecture

Remote working expands an organization’s attack surface as there is no direct control over the technologies used in the employee’s personal computer. Your employee could be using public wifi, outdated OS, or may have unknowingly installed malicious applications on their computer. These vulnerabilities serve as an entry point for attackers to break into your organization’s private network. So, the best way to overcome these potential threats is by adopting a zero-trust architecture.

Fervimax specializes in designing zero trust architecture, which imposes restrictions on the various entry points. This type of architecture verifies the authority and identity of every person or device that attempts to establish a connection with the network. So, if one of your employees receives a malicious attachment with an executable application, then that is quarantined. So, the zero-trust architecture authenticates all persons and devices within and outside the network perimeter.


Lay Down Cybersecurity Guidelines

You need to have a corporate cybersecurity policy that lists out guidelines for those who work from home. This should clearly mention essential security measures such as minimum OS version, use of VPN, updated antivirus, and other security essentials. By doing this, you make your employees more responsible, which helps keep your company’s data secure.


Strong Password Rules and Multi-Factor Authentication

Bruteforce attacks are the most common security threats, which can be launched with the help of a simple application. The application tries various alpha-numeric combinations on the target’s account and in due course cracks the password and gains unauthorized access. Therefore, you need to set strong password rules for logins, which can be done through the backend of your website. A strong password is one that makes use of mixed cases, numbers, and special characters. Another solution is to make use of multi-factor authentication, which involves inserting a code received on the registered mobile or email account, along with the username and password. Since the registered mobile or email ID is accessible only to the account holder, the chances of unauthorized access are minimized.


Robust EDR

Protecting your corporate assets begins with planning prompt security measures that continuously monitor the entry points. This can be done by using endpoint detection through cybersecurity tools that can detect and treat malware and potential threats on a network. So, if the EDR detects a malicious attachment being downloaded onto a system with an executable file, it blocks it and prevents its execution. When your employees work remotely, they may use their internet connection to connect IoT devices and other systems, which increases the attack surface. However, when you have a robust endpoint detection and response system in place, you control the entry point and minimize the attack surface.

The abovementioned cybersecurity measures for remote employees are a snapshot of what an organization must do in order to protect their network from external attacks. However, these measures need to be properly planned according to your organization’s IT architecture. At Fervimax, we specialize in providing cybersecurity planning and implementation services to various businesses. So, if you have not yet fortified your organization’s network, we would be thrilled to do that for you.

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