Disasters leave people and organisations vulnerable across many landscapes, and the internet is no exception. It might even be where people are most at risk because of how much of daily life depends on it. As COVID-19 shifted organisations and people into a remote working setup, cybercriminals are beginning to find even more loopholes in security measures.
People have moved out of their offices, which were backed by powerful cybersecurity fortifications, and into their unsecured homes. There, personal internet and computer use pose another set of risks! Unprotected hardware and software are used to access sensitive and often confidential data from companies, making such data an easy target for hackers. Weak password management, sharing devices with family members, and mixing personal and work computers also put everybody at risk!
Strengthening cybersecurity measures are needed now more than ever. To help you out, here are things to know to help organisations better defend themselves against these risks:
1. Facing the new normal head-on
The new normal gave cybercriminals the perfect target to penetrate the security measures of both large and small enterprises: the remote employee. Nobody was quite ready for the responsibility of cybersecurity to be handed over to the workforce with such little preparation!
For one, these devices and systems were never meant to handle that much sensitive data. Some other factors that play into big security breaches are weak connections and improper internet use practices that employees may be largely unaware of.
The new normal has become just the right opportunity for cybercriminals to attack.
2. Normalising work culture around cybersecurity
Establishing a new facet of organisation culture, while difficult in normal times, is even more challenging as everybody transitions to different working locations. Organisations need to rethink culture-building through remote means, particularly when it comes to encouraging good cybersecurity practices. Management and human resources need to develop a comprehensive Work From Home Policy that includes cybersecurity measures for remote employees, including regular dissemination of cybersecurity awareness, online talks and training, remote installation of security software, and more.
Humans are the most easily compromised aspect of an organisation’s cybersecurity measures because people are vulnerable to cyber scams, such as phishing. This one point of access for a cybercriminal could jeopardise the entire company with huge consequences, such as the business losing its license to operate. Thus, building a culture of cybersecurity awareness and practices becomes essential to an organisation’s defenses.
3. The role of cybersecurity in risk management
With cybercrimes on the rise, organisations should always be prepared to be at a certain level of risk for cyberattacks. Some examples of these include data leakage from employees with access to sensitive information and home network sharing.
Businesses need to adopt a multifaceted approach, such as:
- Integrating HR policy with IT policy to achieve compliance with proper cyber hygiene practices, including monitoring, rewards and recognition, and implementing sanctions, as necessary;
- Developing a cybersecurity-inclined culture across the organisation;
- Implementation of stricter security controls without compromising business agility and user experience; and
- Practicing and ingraining cybersecurity measures across all facets of the business.
4. Planning cybersecurity for the long term
Securing people on the cyber landscape is just one piece of a larger, more complex puzzle. The way organisations do work, whether remotely or with on-site hybrids, will evolve according to changes in society. Future workplaces may see changes such as virtual offshore development centers, identity-aware networks, and hoteling.
Cybersecurity comes down to culture, awareness, and behavior change. Programs that cater to fostering a more cyber and data-secure environment should be prioritised.
The new normal has forced most people to live much of their lives online, whether for socialising and connecting with others or for work. These demand a new kind of security and protection as cybercriminals attack one of today’s most valuable assets: data and information. By fortifying particularly the workforce of today, organisations can help prepare everybody for a safer world tomorrow.
Are you looking for cyber intelligence analysts to help protect your business for the future? Here at FraudWatch International, we have been protecting clients from around the world for more than fifteen years. We are leaders in online brand protection from malware, phishing, and social media impersonation. Connect with us today to find out more!