5 ways to secure your remote workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic

Over the past few weeks, many businesses have made changes to their operations due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, including implementing work-from-home policies. With changing work environments, businesses are facing new security challenges, including securing remote workforces. The following best practices will help your institution stay secure and prevent cybersecurity breaches as employees work outside of their normal office environment.

  1. Understand Your TechnologyWhen moving your employees to remote work environments, it’s important to consider the technology required for a secure workforce as detailed in your business continuity plan, including secure internet and virtual private networks (VPN). Your institution should test your system requirements and bandwidth before full implementation to prevent the risk of overloading the system. Changing work environments as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic also highlight the risks associated with network security. In the past, your network was within your company and protected by your firewall and data connections, but that may no longer be the case. Before moving to remote work, your institution should understand network security vulnerabilities and which types of controls are needed to secure those connections.
  2. Avoid Quick Plans for Remote Data AccessOne of the largest security risk areas during the pandemic is remote data access. As employees leave the office to work remotely, your organization should review data access to provide the ability for uninterrupted work. However, remember that enabling access is accompanied with certain risks. Some organizations have made the mistake of enabling data access in a non-secure way, thus exposing vulnerabilities that would not have existed otherwise. As your organization adapts to remote work, avoid hasty plans to make all data accessible, including migrating all data to the cloud. Before enabling remote access, think strategically about how to leverage your current capabilities and enable additional access in a secure way.


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