Remote work has become a standard practice, offering professionals flexibility and convenience. However, as the popularity of remote work continues to rise, it is accompanied by a significant increase in cybersecurity incidents. This article will explore the impact of remote work on cybersecurity and provide best practices for securing your organisation’s data while working remotely, with a special emphasis on the expertise of Build38 in Mobile Application Protection Solutions and Services.
The Impact of Remote Work on Cybersecurity
Remote work has become a standard option for professionals, offering flexibility and convenience. However, the rise of remote work has also led to an increase in cybersecurity incidents. According to a report by Alliance Virtual Offices, there was a 238% surge in cyber attacks during the COVID-19 pandemic, highlighting the vulnerabilities of remote work setups.
Gartner’s “7 top trends in cybersecurity for 2022” emphasised the expanding attack surface and the use of public cloud as major cybersecurity concerns. Security experts have raised concerns about the risks associated with remote work, particularly at scale, which significantly expands the potential attack surface.
Security Risks of Remote Work
The shift to remote work not only expanded the potential attack surface but also moved it outside traditional perimeter defences like firewalls and intrusion detection systems. With many employees working from home, these defences no longer protect the companies effectively. This change has created new challenges for companies all over the world in protecting their data and networks.
Remote work brings about various factors that contribute to security risks, including:
- Expanded attack surfaces: With more employees working remotely, companies face a broader attack surface, creating additional workloads for cybersecurity teams.
- Lack of security talent: The shortage of qualified cybersecurity professionals poses challenges for organisations striving to secure remote workers effectively.
- Less oversight by security staff: Remote work takes system access, network traffic, and data beyond the traditional perimeters of enterprise technology environments, making it difficult for security teams to monitor and protect all endpoints.
- Poor data practices and procedures: Remote workers may inadvertently download sensitive information to their local devices, putting data at risk.
- Susceptibility to phishing attacks: The increased reliance on email communication makes remote workers more vulnerable to phishing attacks.
- Unsecured and vulnerable hardware: Many remote workers use personal devices that may lack proper security measures, potentially exposing the organisation to security threats.
- Unsecured networks: Remote workers often use unsecured networks, including public Wi-Fi, which can increase the risk of data breaches.
- Vulnerabilities in enabling technologies: Vulnerabilities in technologies supporting remote work can be exploited by cybercriminals.
- Misconfigurations in the public cloud: Misconfigurations in cloud environments, particularly related to access controls, can lead to security incidents.
- Webcam hacking and zoombombing: The rise in video conferencing platforms has created opportunities for hackers to disrupt meetings or access sensitive information.
Sophisticated socially engineered attacks: Cybercriminals have become increasingly sophisticated in exploiting human vulnerabilities for financial gain.
Best Practices for Remote Working Cybersecurity
To mitigate these security risks and protect your mobile applications and data, consider implementing these best practices:
- Mobile Application Protection: Usee Build38’s Mobile Application Protection Solutions and Services to secure your worker’s mobile Applications, ensuring that your data and its users are protected at all times.
- Implement Basic Security Controls: Encourage remote workers to use virtual private networks (VPNs), antivirus software, strong passwords, encryption, and secure cloud-based file sharing for protecting sensitive data.
- Strengthen the Corporate Data Protection Program: Identify and safeguard sensitive data and critical assets within your mobile Applications.
- Establish a Strong Vulnerability Management Program: Prioritise and address vulnerabilities that present the highest risks swiftly.
- Review Threat Detection and Incident Response Programs: Ensure that these programs are updated to align with current threats and environments.
- Implement a Zero-Trust Framework: Require all users and devices to verify their authorisation to access the enterprise environment, including mobile applications.
- Deploy User Behavior Analytics (UBA): Use machine learning and data science to identify suspicious activities and compromised user credentials within your mobile applications.
- Ensure Proper Mobile App Security: Work with Build38 to fortify your Mobile App security and data protection.
- Establish an Ongoing Security Awareness Program: Educate users about new security threats and promote cybersecurity awareness to protect your mobile applications and data.
Remote workers are a critical line of defence against cyberattacks
Cybersecurity threats have been on the rise, with a 38% increase in global cyberattacks in 2022, according to Check Point Research.
Employees are a critical line of defence against these attacks, making their awareness and proactive actions essential. Hackers often exploit employees as the weakest link in corporate networks, typically through tactics like phishing emails. During the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, when remote work became the norm due to lockdowns, cybersecurity concerns were paramount. The sudden shift to remote work significantly expanded the “attack surface” for organisations, increasing potential security risks.
However, Remote workers’ heightened awareness of cybersecurity threats and their proactive stance demonstrate they are a great initial barrier.
In an era where remote work is increasingly prevalent, companies can leverage this advantage by enhancing cybersecurity awareness and training for all employees, both remote and in-office, to create a stronger defence against the growing tide of cyber threats.
Implement the best practices partnering up with Build38
As remote work is here to stay, the security of your organisation’s data is of paramount importance. As experts in Mobile Application Protection Solutions and Services, Build38 is your trusted partner in securing your mobile applications and data.
By implementing these best practices, you can drastically reduce the risk of costly and devastating cyber attacks. Don’t wait – partner with Build38 to secure your mobile Apps and protect your organisation’s valuable data.
Secure your mobile applications with Build38 and ensure your data remains protected in the remote work era. To learn about our Mobile App security solution contact us today!