Camila Navarro

Cybersecurity Challenges For Hybrid Work

September 10, 2021,

Blogs

Cybersecurity Challenges For Hybrid Work

The current pandemic has caused a historical tectonic shift in how people live and work.

Although the vast majority of companies are gradually returning to traditional offices, there are still around 40% of the US workforce that still works remotely.

There is only one thing that is crystal clear – the future of work is a hybrid model that takes a bit different approach to workspaces.

However, when a significant part of the workforce works through the internet yet sometimes from the offices, it is a hacker’s dream.

Wondering why so? Because devices move in and out of the secured company networks. That’s why ETTE has pulled together a list of the top 5 cybersecurity challenges in the new hybrid environment.

1. Remote workers are “ideal” targets

Laptops and devices shared amongst friends and family members, weak or no at all home Wi-Fi security, poor security hygiene, insecure mobile devices, and so on are the greatest nightmares that security professionals challenge daily with remote workers.

Besides that, remote workers also have a lack of bandwidth or internet connectivity which postpones important software updates giving the cybercriminals space to exploit.

2. Lost or stolen business device

Did you know that almost one-third of the American workforce has lost a working device while on vacation? Expensive equipment is way safer in secured offices than in homes.

As a matter of fact, expensive equipment like laptops and mobile phones are the main targets of thieves. Not to mention the probability of employees losing their devices in public places.

3. Shadow IT threats

Undoubtedly, Shadow IT can wreak havoc on your cybersecurity and business. The problem lies in the very name: those connections exist outside of IT knowledge and security – they are hiding in the shadows.

Shadow IT stands for information technology connected directly to the network without previous IT department approval. Shadow IT could be anything, from cloud applications over web services to software and hardware.

Employees often feel that licensed software is less effective than another – alternative one.

4. Poor patch management is still plaguing cybersecurity

Applying a patch in most cases eliminates the vulnerability of management tools. However, patching is time-consuming, which is why some employees often ignore it.

Along with that, patching can also disturb the workflow because it requires a service or software restart. This is the second reason why employees ignore it.

5. Phishing

Phishing is when hackers use email to pretend they are actually someone they are not. They are trying to get out of employees valuable or sensitive information.

Phishing is one of the most successful and most common tools at thousands of hacker’s disposal when they are thinking about breaching the company’s network.

How To Tackle Your Cybersecurity In A Hybrid Work Environment

Get strategic about resources: You will face limited resources. Whether it’s the IT department, extra monitors, VPN access, you have to see what your remote work environment requires.

Cover the basics: Employees training, secure Wi-Fi, AV software, and so on are the fundamentals of securing the hybrid work environment.

Secure your network: If you do not already have a VPN, it is high time to get one.

The Takeaway

No matter what, you might need professional help. Some parts of strengthening a hybrid work environment security can be a DIY task, while the others that provide you with complete peace of mind require professional IT services.