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How To Overcome Remote Work Security Threats

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Cyber or security threats have increased dramatically over time. It’s primarily targeted towards smaller businesses or individuals working for more prominent companies now assigned to remote work.

The term “COVID-19” will never be forgotten, even for decades to come. During the pandemic breakout, many big-league industries and smaller businesses, in fact, the entire world, were asked to stay home. The life outside our gates may have slowed down, but the work never stopped.

Millions of employees were asked to work from home in unexplainable situations. Some had issues with Wi-Fi speed and a lack of devices to work with; some countries even suffered power outages during these trying times.

But, the worst part about working remotely is the innumerable cybersecurity threats that come with it.

Why Is Remote Work A Threat To Security?

Working from home has now made employees more vulnerable to cyber-attacks. You’re handling large electronic files or corporate accounts on unprotected devices. There’s no IT team sitting in the next room to take care of your needs or come up with solutions.

The Pandemic has already made the world paranoid and fearful, and it’s because of it that hackers are taking full advantage of the situation. Remote work has its perks, but most of it isn’t all that bright and shiny.

It’s a fact that because of COVID-19, people are always and still are looking for new apps to stay alert, for causes to donate to, and for reasons to stay safe. Their vulnerability now makes it a prime target for security threats.

Besides, the remote work environment, regardless of the Pandemic, isn’t as safe as workplaces. That’s a fact that is extremely difficult to muster.

What Kind Of Security Threats Targets Remote Workers?

remote work security threats

With each passing year, there seems to be a bigger and bigger bump in security threats. Hackers have devised highly new and tricky ways to hook remote workers.

Old ways are also still in full swing, and the fact that old methods of security attacks still prevail shows us just how significant the impact is.

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Just in case you’re not familiar with what kind of threats exist which could put a big dent in remote work life, here’s what they look like:

  • Lack of security software and inattentive security

Regardless of whether you have worked remotely since the beginning of time or were just assigned to work remotely due to the Pandemic, you have to be twice as careful. You probably won’t have the best security software or a whole team to help you in such situations. That’s just not how businesses work.

They can only do so much for you. In a workplace, the IT team can control the number of people over their secure network and which workers can access what device. This all changes when remote. You’re carrying all your business work on your device because the office probably didn’t provide you with any of their own.

This means less security for you; no one to monitor your devices for malware or new viruses that you may not have detected. Never leave your work device unattended, even around loved ones. You don’t know the dangers of that. What if someone happens to steal your device? You’d lose all that valuable information and more that leads to bigger targets.

Hence, we should all educate ourselves in the area. I am not saying to become professionals, but the least we can do is read some resources, which may help us secure our online information.

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  • Emails

Have you heard of phishing? This has been a massive hit in the security threat department. It’s much bigger now during the Pandemic. Hackers who send out phishing emails somehow know what groups you’re a part of or where your interests lie.

They’ll devise new and creative ways to keep you on the hook, getting you to click on the bait. DManyremote workers have received emails that involve seeking aid during the Pandemic, a website offering free clinic tests or free medical gear. And even if it’s not for free, it’ll be on sale.

So all you have to do is sign up and provide a few vital information as a down payment. These emails are phishing scams. They’re designed to get you to click and deliver information and credit card details. The outcome? Bankrupt or loss of essential files through malware attacks.

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  • Dangerous security apps

Because you’re asked to work from home, you will need your device's best security anti-spyware or antivirus software. Numerous apps are available, and most come with bugs or viruses. You won’t even be able to tell the difference in the number of fake reviews on their website.

There are even fake pandemic apps that claim to assist. If you download any of these, your devices that probably carry sensitive information will either be deleted, stolen, or held at ransom. Hackers will already be on your network when you attempt to download the apps.

  • Man-in-the-middle attacks

When working remotely, the office will provide one or a few domains for the entire workforce to collaborate through updates or share ideas. You’ll be provided with a username and password. Now, since you have access to a portal that holds sensitive information shared by other colleagues, don’t you think this is the right time to be extra careful?

If your device lacks security or you have a fragile Wi-Fi network, hackers can easily take hold of your network and all its devices. This means they can hack into your system, create a fake account and log into your business accounts. This puts you and a load of other remote workers from your office at risk.

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How To Overcome Remote Work Security Threats

How To Overcome Remote Work Security Threats

Even though we can’t precisely control the situation to the max and the kinds of security threats that’ll reach your doorstep, there are certain precautions you can take to prevent it: lightning up the situation. Here’s what you can do:

  • Firstly, research. Know your options and look up only the best and most renowned security software or antivirus apps for your device. This software must come free of any further issues that can add to your plate.
  • Don’t just download the app and let it lie in the dust. Ensure all you download is up-to-date and patched up from any security threats. This applies to your devices, too. Even if you use an older version of Windows, do a clean sweep of your system.
  • Double-factor authentication is another crucial measure to look towards. Setting up a simple password for your device and accounts won’t cut it. Always sign up for two-factor authentication. If someone tries to hack into your account, you’ll immediately be notified on your smartphone and email.
  • Offices must train employees about what can happen when working remotely and how to address these issues. You can’t just throw your employees out on the highway and expect them to defend themselves without knowledge. A short training course is required.
  • Don’t save essential files on your desktop without any security. Either send them to the Cloud or use other software of a similar sort that requires a lot of security.

READ ALSO: Most Vulnerable Countries Revealed by Cybersecurity Exposure Index 2020

Bottom Line

Working remotely has perks, but it’s not always a bed of roses. Your life can get much more troublesome if you don’t prepare for future security attacks. Even if the office doesn’t provide its staff with introductory courses, you have the power to educate yourself. This will benefit you much more than you think.

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Gina Lynch
Gina Lynch
Gina Lynch is a VPN expert and online privacy advocate who stands for the right to online freedom. She is highly knowledgeable in the field of cybersecurity, with years of experience in researching and writing about the topic. Gina is a strong advocate of digital privacy and strives to educate the public on the importance of keeping their data secure and private. She has become a trusted expert in the field and continues to share her knowledge and advice to help others protect their online identities.


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