Cyber Security

Hybrid Working Vulnerabilities

Written by SysGroup Marketing

At SysGroup, we work hard to support organisations and provide a secure and relevant digital environment that supports their business goals. Our SysCloud Enterprise environment has been created to provide secure services to a wide range of customers.

Over the last 18 months, businesses everywhere have become accustomed to supporting their workers to work from home. However, despite this familiarity, organisations are still defining the 'new normal', and with that redefinition comes challenges for how to build the best approach to cyber security for both individual workers and IT security teams alike.

Available data tells us that remote workers are the primary cause of cyberattacks, in fact, 91% of attacks can be traced back to those working from home. Added to this, cyber attacks have become more sophisticated, targeting remote workers in more refined ways. Commonly, this leads employees to fall victim to keylogging, phishing and pharming attacks.

Once a user has been targeted, it opens up avenues for a hacker to penetrate a corporate network. 

So, what steps can we take to better secure the systems we use?

Mitigating Attacks in the Hybrid Workplace

1. Virtual Private Network (VPN)

A VPN is a secure and gated network, allowing employees to access sensitive company data from anywhere and any device. VPNs are particularly important when employees are working in a public area, sharing a wireless network or using a public Wi-Fi connection.

2. Multi-Factor Authentication

Whilst a VPN provides one layer of security, using only passwords to access this and other applications simply isn't enough. Adding an extra layer of verification in the form of a Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) solution will limit the vulnerabilities incurred through weak passwords.

In addition to this, using strong passwords across multiple applications and devices can be difficult to manage. Using a password manager to organise your logins will encourage users to use multiple and strong passwords.

3. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)

As more and more organisations adopt a BYOD model, this naturally imposes more risk given the limited security capabilities of personal devices. Whilst some employees will pride themselves on sound safety habits, corporate hardware will typically have more robust defences ingrained in them, reducing the risk.

Even with work-issued devices, all downloads should be carefully vetted and monitored as company information is at stake. Employees should never download applications to their work devices without permission from your IT team. Unknown apps and programmes often have security vulnerabilities that act as an open gateway for hackers.

This is where using a VPN and an MFA tool will add additional layers of security, and heighten a company's security posture.

4. Zero-Trust Model

Zero-Trust is a security philosophy that is becoming increasingly important.

A Zero-Trust model ensures there are clear limitations on what employees have access to, and that access to systems is always protected by MFA or other security protocols. The approach makes sure employees are only granted access to platforms that are required to fulfill their duties, limiting access to sensitive data sources, inclusive of passwords.

Employees should also be clear that sharing passwords with co-workers, friends and family members expose them and their business to hackers.

Work Intelligently, Diligently and Securely

It is clear that ransomware attacks are on the rise. It is therefore essential that organisations take proactive action to protect their users and their systems.

A hybrid work model can expose additional vulnerabilities that need to be addressed. Always heed the advice of your company's IT team, and make sure you do your part to keep devices and work information secure.

Reach out to SysGroup to ensure your business' security is never compromised. As an award-winning managed IT provider, our security services provide unified threat management firewalls, APT blockers, endpoint security, 2FA, email filtering, vulnerability audits and penetration testing.

Our solutions can help protect against external threats, and threats from within your own network.

Speak to one of our experts about your security posture today!

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