Organizations have seen a drastic change at present, maybe once in a lifetime. Keeping the offices closed and making the people work from home in the wake of COVID-19 has been challenging. However, companies working from home are getting improved productivity, even if the office environment does not exist.
On the other hand, the pandemic situation has caused a significant impact on the employee’s morale. Some of them had to manage their network setting, set up a new router, and get an organized workplace. Those living with a big family had to go through the puzzle of the best area of isolation. Those staying alone with their partners struggled with a monotonous lifestyle without being in touch with outsiders.
Why the work from home thing started?
We tend to ignore, but the news websites and bulletins still revolve around coronavirus or pandemic impacts. Since the day we heard that the novel coronavirus is a pandemic, i.e., all across the world, companies started to vacate their offices for employee safety. It became a dire need for an employee to stay back at home while working from home for the foreseeable future. Getting back to their families, dealing with everything right from childcare to merely trying to find a quiet space for a call has become the new normal.
Then, homes have become offices, and in a rush to keep things going, we’re using new systems and adhering to new policies. It almost put a halt to work and private life. It is done in the situation with unmanaged routers and printers and home automation systems. Most of the time, partners are sharing machines while working from home. And these unmanaged systems might sometimes lead to cybersecurity threats.
Factors leading to cybersecurity threats
You and I understand cybersecurity threats as an inappropriate working condition that helps an outsider/hacker steal the information.
Below mentioned are the reasons why hackers can fetch the data and inject malware on the websites.
There were hasty implementations of tools to support the army of now-remote workers. A lot of organizations did not have the right infrastructure to enable widespread WFH (work from home). People did not necessarily get the required level of assistance and integration expected from an IT solutions company. After months of hassle, things have settled in a standard operating procedure leaving the problems behind.
Old unsolved issues
The distributed network threats are called out as a problem for a long time. During that time, networks were targeted differently than they are now. For example, you must have heard about the threat actors working from coffee shops targeting these people. With the occurrence of the pandemic, these threat actors have increased their reach. We all know that home networks aren’t secure like corporate networks and are easy to target.
Lack of security
On the same grounds as above, the gateway firewalls, sandboxes, nIPS (Neural Processing Information System) that you enjoy on your corporate network isn’t applicable anymore. Security cannot be assured in such a scenario.
Therefore, there are high chances of security breaches by attackers who are always in line for such opportunities. In such cases, employees can use a VPN (virtual private network) in a way that their activity remains behind the firewall. If these protocols are not implemented well on time, there are chances of your employees losing trust in your company.
Overall it is the vulnerable condition of enterprise devices due to the standard configuration of remote network connection and outdated security software. Also, the biggest threat is the usage of personal devices that in-house security cannot monitor. Many employees use their tools for performing organizational tasks from home, and there are chances of those devices being already affected by now.
How are people tackling this menace?
We foresee that the pandemic is not going to end anytime soon. It might last for a few months more until the vaccine is readily available in the market. While the hackers are trying to put their best to get a catch of information, employees should stop sharing personal and financial information via email or text, or any online medium. If the information sharing is a mandate, call them for confirmation or share the details over a call.
People are making the utmost use of VPNs instead of public-facing apps such as WhatsApp to avoid becoming prey. Not only implementation, but practical implementation is needed to use the most recent patched/updated version of the respective software.
Measures to avoid a security breach
- Avoid making notes of passwords on personal devices
- Ensure proper screen lock of personal devices
- Keep a strict and consistent routine of work, same as office days
- Remote periodical training of teams against malware is a must
- Access to several remote tools to ensure safety and success
- Secure and update network perimeter defenses along with endpoints
- Backup and secure business data for recovery before an event of cyberattack or system failure
In a nutshell, the outbreak of COVID-19 has given rise to work from home culture and, in parallel, boosted the cyber threats business across the world. With social distancing, the limit of online business, meetings, data exchange, and the transaction has increased. This system and working pattern have made it crucial for everyone to take proper security measures to avoid cyber risks and protect sensitive information from being compromised.
Additionally, any extent to ensure security will never be enough because the opponent will not stop. Cybercriminals are endlessly innovative and adaptive. So, it is required for an organization to take a step ahead of cybercriminals and present a better approach toward security crisis.
It will be a good idea to download our latest whitepapers on cybersecurity for more detailed information on the subject.