Cyber Security Tips When Working From Home
According to cybersecurity company Darktrace, the proportion of attacks using malicious emails to target home workers has increased from 12% to more than 60% during the lockdown period in the UK. So, with that frightening statistic in mind, we thought it pertinent to outline some of the risks of working from home – and some of the things we can do to mitigate them. Here are a few cyber security tips when working from home (WFH).
5 Cyber Security tips when WFH.
1. Beware of the rise in phishing and spoofing emails
There has been a huge increase in the number of phishing emails related to COVID‐19 which have played upon the fears of email users. Spoofing, where you receive an email supposedly from a
colleague, has also been on the rise as fraudsters exploit the situation where colleagues no longer share an office. Spoofing usually accounts for a fifth of all emails but has risen to as many as 60%. Attacks have targeted the tools used by homeworkers such as fake requests to reset Zoom video conferencing accounts, or requests to reset virtual private network (VPN) accounts. Creating company policies for the downloading of software tools, the avoidance of clicking suspicious links and the resetting of passwords, as well as educating employees to the dangers will help mitigate these increasing threats.
2. Make sure software is up to date
Instil in all employees the good practice of making sure that systems and software are all up to date. Ensure staff understand the importance of keeping their software up to date, and that they know how to do this. Operating systems are updated regularly to prevent fraudsters from exploiting any weaknesses so running that latest version is key to keeping threats at bay.
3. Look after your devices
Employees are more likely to have devices stolen – or simply lose them when they’re away from the office. Data should be encrypted, and passwords should protect from anyone accessing them. Most devices have encryption built-in – but make sure it’s switched on! Remote blocking is another option where a device is stolen, it’s possible to retrieve or erase the data remotely. It’s also important that employees keep their own devices separate to work devices. BYOD (bring your own device) can provide a security breach if personal devices don’t have the same level of security on them.
4. Ensure privacy with a VPN
It’s important that with everyone working from home you can scale your VPN to sustain an increased number of simultaneous connections. Brute force can make VPNs vulnerable to attack, and of the biggest weaknesses of VPNs is not patching fast enough. Make sure the VPN is fully patched so there are no weaknesses to exploit. If employees are using their own devices, it’s also important to get the VPN to secure their connection and encrypt the data so that they can safely connect to public Wi‐Fi networks.
5. User error
It’s not always about the technology – the user has a part to play too and there are some useful pieces of advice to give to employees. Encourage staff to lock their screens if they leave their device unattended – especially if they have children or housemates. When on video conferencing calls be careful not to share a screen with their audience that has other windows open with data/information for all to see. And when a device isn’t being used, be sure to store it safely. It’s also important to give employees a process for reporting problems: theft or loss of a device or issues with their systems in a supportive way – and encourage them to do so immediately. Early reporting might make the difference between glitch and catastrophe.
If you have any more Cyber Security Tips When Working From Home, we would like to know. If you want to talk to us about your security while working from home, get in touch with the team today.
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