Business’ infosec (information security) network is impacted by remote work worldwide, increasing vulnerabilities in security. On December 31, 2019, the whole world was introduced by a virus named COVID-19, forcing businesses and other fields to remote work. The sudden shift to a distributed workforce introduced new challenges and opportunities for companies across various industries. While remote work brought benefits such as increased flexibility and access to global talent, it also significantly impacted a business’s information security (infosec) network.
In this article, we will explain the influence of remote work on a business’s infosec network.
What is InfoSec Network?
InfoSec, short for information security, involves implementing processes and tools to safeguard business information against unauthorized access, alteration and damage. Businesses are allowed to use infosec networks to protect their data and avoid any unauthorized access.
Influence of Remote Work on InfoSec Network
Remote work influenced the infosec network in many ways to make it better than before and help businesses efficiently. Here you will get some examples of the influence of remote work on a business’s infosec network:
Expanded Attack Surface
One of the most prominent impacts of remote work on a business’s infosec network is the expansion of the attack surface. The traditional security boundaries have dissolved, with employees accessing corporate resources from different devices and locations. This situation opens up new entry points for cybercriminals to exploit a business’s security. It also increases the risk of data breaches, ransomware attacks and other cyber threats.
In order to make this risk less severe, businesses must adopt a thorough procedure for security that includes multi-factor authentication, powerful endpoint security and network monitoring. Businesses can reduce the likelihood of unauthorized access and potential data leaks by securing each remote access point.
Endpoint Security and BYOD Policy
Remote work often involves using personal devices, known as “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) policies. While BYOD can boost employee productivity, it poses significant security challenges. Personal devices may lack the same security measures as company-issued devices, making them vulnerable to malware and other cyber threats.
Implementing strong endpoint security solutions becomes crucial in such scenarios where employees are bringing their devices to work. Companies should enforce security policies, such as mandatory device encryption and regular software updates. In addition, remote data wipe capabilities of a device should be enabled to protect data in case of device loss or theft. Adopting virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) or containerization techniques can help isolate corporate data from personal applications and enhance security.
Data Privacy and Compliance
The rise of remote work has also raised anxieties about privacy and compliance with rules and regulations. Companies are responsible for safeguarding sensitive customer and employee information, and that responsibility can be compromised by using remote work. Different regions or locations are contrasting data protection laws, making it challenging for businesses to navigate the compliance landscape.
To address these concerns, businesses must prioritize data privacy training for remote employees and conduct regular audits to ensure compliance. Encrypting data during sharing and storing, adopting secure file-sharing practices and limiting access to sensitive information are essential strategies for maintaining compliance in a remote work environment.
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) have been a common tool businesses use to secure remote connections. However, the overflow in remote work has highlighted vulnerabilities associated with VPN usage. Increased demand for VPN services might lead to server overloads. It is useful in reducing connection speeds and potentially compromising security.
In response, businesses should consider adopting a Zero Trust Network Architecture, which verifies every user and device attempting to connect to the network, regardless of location. This approach minimizes the reliance on VPNs and focuses on authenticating users and devices before granting access to sensitive resources.
Social Engineering Risks
Social engineering attacks rely on deceiving and manipulating people’s behaviour and can lead to negative consequences such as financial loss. In addition, remote work environments may be more sensitive to social engineering attacks. Cybercriminals exploit the isolation and distractions of remote workers to manipulate them into publicizing sensitive information or executing unauthorized actions.
Businesses should prioritize cybersecurity awareness training for their remote workforce. It assists businesses in educating employees about common social engineering tactics and emphasizing the importance of verifying requests for sensitive information. Strong email security measures, such as email authentication protocols like DMARC, can also give access to businesses to prevent phishing attacks and email spoofing.
The influence of remote work on a business’s infosec network cannot be underestimated to avoid risks concerned with remote work. While the evolution to remote work presents various challenges, it also offers opportunities for businesses to enhance their cybersecurity practices. By adopting a proactive and adaptive security approach, organizations can protect their sensitive data. It can be useful to maintain operational resilience in the evolving remote work landscape. Embracing innovative technologies and investing in employee cybersecurity training will be key to staying ahead of cyber threats and safeguarding the future of remote work. These types of strategies can be helpful for businesses to stay in the competition and get an edge over their competitors.