Mitigate the cyber security risks of remote working
Protecting your organisation against cyber threats when employees work outside the office can be daunting. Not only does remote working massively increase the surface of attack, it also renders many traditional controls, designed to protect workers inside the confines of a traditional network, ineffective.
Read on to learn more about the challenges of home working security and how to reduce your cyber security risk.
Defending a vastly increased attack surface
Perimeter security is less effective
Identity and access management
Reduced threat visibility
Use of employee-owned devices
Managing cloud security and applications
- Implement multifactor authentication across all accounts
- If bandwidth allows, encourage staff to use a VPN at all times
- Review the security and privacy settings of collaboration tools
- Enable audit logging when using platforms such as Office 365
- Ensure employee devices are protected with the latest endpoint security
- Use DMARC and SPF to help identify email phishing attacks
Identify and address remote working cyber security risks
To further enhance remote working security, it’s important to fully identify and classify the precise risks to your organisation. A remote working security assessment from Redscan will help you to better understand the security of networks, systems, tools and applications used to support your remote workforce and ensure these are appropriately hardened.
Our CREST-certified experts are hugely experienced at identifying and helping to address home working security vulnerabilities and can help to ensure that data and assets are protected to the latest information security and compliance standards. Learn the answers to questions such as:
• Are access controls such as VPNs securely configured?
• Are cloud workloads secured to prevent cloud data breaches?
• Are firewalls securely configured to block open ports?
• Are suitable controls in place to help mitigate the risks of BYOD?
Elevate employee cyber awareness
To help minimise the security risks of remote working, improving employee cyber awareness is vital. Attackers routinely target remote workers, with social engineering a common attack vector used to trick employees into disclosing passwords and installing malware.
A social engineering assessment from Redscan will help to gauge the effectiveness of your organisation’s remote working and cyber awareness programs by simulating a real-life email phishing attack.Learn more about our social engineering service
Enhance threat visibility and coverage
To detect threats that evade perimeter security controls, some organisations use behavioural monitoring technologies such as SIEM. However, when employees work remotely, the ability of such tools to identify endpoint focussed attacks is reduced.
Kroll Responder, our Managed Detection and Response service, integrates the latest network and endpoint detection technologies alongside the experienced cyber security experts required to leverage them. This significantly enhances threat visibility and extends threat coverage across your organisation’s complete infrastructure, including networks, systems, applications and user devices.Learn more about Kroll Responder MDR
- What are the security risks associated with employees working from home?
When organisations allow their employees to work from home, many of the protections that they rely on in the office no longer apply. Remote working means that the traditional security perimeter is diminished, but with the surface of attack is greatly expanded as a result. Organisations that support remote working must ensure that employees can continue to access the systems and data they need but in a way that is safe and secure. This can be particularly difficult when endpoint devices accessing a network are not security hardened and there is a lack visibility of devices that are in use. Common remote working security risks include lack of threat visibility, insecure configuration of VPNs and access controls, cloud misconfigurations, and use of unsecured employee devices.
- What can be done to reduce the threats of remote working?
Reducing the security risks of remote working requires a mullti-layered approach, encompassing a range of controls and procedures to help prevent, detect and respond to threats. Hardening endpoint security, proactive network and endpoint monitoring, enforcing access management controls and conducting regular employee cyber awareness training are just some of the measures organisations can take to improve work at home security.
- What can remote workers do to improve cyber security?
There are a number of actions that employees can take in order to work more securely outside of the office. Security tips for remote working include reviewing the security of home networks, exercising additional caution when opening and receiving emails, using password management tools to set strong account passwords, keeping antivirus software up-to-date, and saving files to a network rather than devices directly.
- Why are remote workers targeted by cybercriminals?
Cybercriminals are exploiting a rise in remote working by designing attacks that specifically target home workers. When employees work outside of the office, many of the controls that would protect them inside the office are less effective. Employee behaviour can also change – in a more relaxed home setting, employees may not exercise the same caution as they would in the office, leading to risky browsing behaviours. Criminals seek to take advantage by increasing endpoint focused attacks, which, in many cases involves social engineering.
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