The way we all work has dramatically changed post COVID-19. Record numbers of companies are enabling their staff to work remotely or in some hybrid scenario. For those teams still working from home, even just part time, it’s more important than ever to educate and enforce data security initiatives. With cyber-crimes on the rise, the actions you take to protect yourself and your company are ones that may make all the difference. Here’s how you can ensure you are taking the necessary steps to mitigate the risk.
VPN is Your First Line of Defense
One of the reasons that many businesses had previously made the switch to leveraging a remote workforce is because there is simply more talent available in a remote work scenario and frankly a dramatic increase in productivity for remote hires. For those professionals able to set their own schedule, work from their own preferred locations, the time that is spent getting the job done is more focused and productive. There are fewer distractions and workers remain more engaged. But if those remote workers don’t have access to the network, they will have a hard time staying connected to the work. And even more importantly, you risk valuable data loss or vulnerability.
VPN is the answer to the remote workforce security problems. It provides secure access to the internal network that remote employees need to be productive day in and day out. It furthermore limits risk by ensuring a secure connection while giving your remote workers access to the resources they need. Making sure that remote workers have access to the right information and resources via your internal network is critical but it must be provided with the data security to ensure your sensitive information is kept safe. But with VPN, data security is protected while your workforce can stay in touch just like any other employee.
Workers inevitably create hard copy documents and records that can be a risk if they are not disposed of properly. To protect your business even when working with remote workers, make sure that such document are shredded (both horizontally and vertically so that reassembly is next to impossible), incinerated, or pulped so that no information is available to unauthorized viewers.
When it comes to digital files, don’t forget to be equally thorough. Simply deleting the files is not enough. Until that space has been written over, the possibility of recovering data still exists. Similar to shredding important paper documents, one way to ensure that your personal information is not easily accessed is by “shredding” of the individual files on the hard drive. There are a variety of software programs that can shred files. Just pick the one that works best for you.
It can be difficult to make sure that mobile employees are following the rules one hundred percent of the time. But training them and providing them with the tools they need to be as secure as possible is a clear win. To make it a priority for everyone, make sure you highlight the importance of information security for your remote workforce.
Monitor the Use of Unsecure or Public Wi-Fi Connections
If you know your team members are going to be on the road, how they connect to the internet matters. Wi-Fi connections (in business lounges, on trains, in coffee shops, etc.), can lead to data breaches. But the use of unsecured Wi-Fi is more common than ever. Our recommendation is to encourage remote workers to always connect to trusted network. Use VPN. Never use public Wi-Fi for sensitive information. This can be a critical vulnerability for those working from home.
Looking for more advice on how you can better manage your remote workforce? Connect with the experts at Happy Faces Records Management today.