Remote work and data security: main practices for safe work during a pandemic

Due to a coronavirus pandemic, companies around the world are switching to remote work to protect their employees against the spread of the disease. However, for many companies, this is not anything new. Larger companies, especially in the IT industry, are accustomed to continuous communication with team members who are located in different cities or even countries. However, smaller companies are not always prepared to let the entire staff work at home. In addition, not every employee knows how to behave properly in such a situation, because of which they may inadvertently expose their and enterprise’s data to danger.

Hackers are eager to take advantage of every opportunity, especially people's panic during the crisis. At the beginning of the epidemic, several websites appeared, disguised as maps of the virus's spread. By visiting such a site, users allowed malicious software to access private information stored in the browser, such as passwords, email addresses, and saved payment card data.

How to ensure data security during remote work?

Protection of company equipment

When working remotely, companies often provide devices to their employees to provide them with access to projects and facilitate tasks. However, before team members receive equipment, it should be checked and properly protected. First of all, it is worth installing the latest software versions, in particular antivirus programs. In addition, it is important to secure email clients and messengers that could potentially be targeted by hackers.

Secure file sharing

Working remotely, employees still need access to shared files. By storing them in the cloud, the company allows team members to download or view documents from any device. This is especially useful for companies that cannot provide their employees with laptops or mobile devices for remote work, or the file base is too large. However, it is worth remembering to set up multi-level authentication for greater protection of files in the cloud.

Use of VPN

In remote mode, the exchange of information and files is the basis of all activities. Besides, employees do not always use company equipment, which is why communication should be properly secured. Virtual Private Network provides encryption and protection of data sent to each other by team members when they are out of the office. Also, VPN is not only an additional security measure, but it can have a positive impact on work.

Setting healthy practices

Remote work often means increasing the number of work management tools and emails that employees receive. Therefore, it is important to exercise caution, especially when hackers can take advantage of the current situation by sending messages containing malicious links or files. Besides, when using private devices for remote work, it is worth ensuring that work programs or apps do not gain access to personal information and vice versa. Working remotely can be difficult to separate private and professional life, especially when all family members are at home. Due to this, it is worth remembering not only your cybersecurity but also your close ones.

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