With the spread of Covid-19 around the country, many organizations are sending employees home to work remotely. Doing so can be an essential health and safety precaution. However, remote work comes with additional cybersecurity threats. Here are some key ways that organizations can prioritize network security while employees are dispersed.
Implement Network Access Control (NAC)
When you have a team working remotely, it’s important to manage employee access. This involves keeping external access the same as it would be internally. Basically, restrictions for remote employees shouldn’t change when they work outside the office.
They key is to practice the principle of least privilege (POLP). By doing so, you’re allowing the minimum amount of access privileges possible to your internal database or dashboard. With POLP in place for remote employees, cyber attacks would reach as small a portion of your internal system as the access allows. And this could protect deeper layers of sensitive information.
Avoid Public WiFi
Encourage your employees to only use their in-home WiFi networks when working remotely. Some might want to work in public places like coffee shops and libraries. However, doing so is a risky move. Connecting to a public network while working puts company data at risk, since a potential attacker could be connected as well. Remind your employees to use a personal hotspot with a strong password if they need to work in a public location. It’s also important that their home networks have a discreet name and strong password as well.
Set Up Multi-Factor Authentication
Additional layers of security are key when your employees are out of the office. Encourage your team to opt in to multi-factor authentication (MFA) when using external-facing resources. This ensures that only authorized users are accessing this information. If MFA isn’t an option, a virtual private network (VPN) can help as well. A VPN allows dispersed employees to share and access data across a secure public network.
Avoid Password Reuse
Some employees may be in the habit of using the same password for everything. In fact, about two-thirds of people reuse passwords on multiple accounts. Password guessing is a common cyber attack approach, which can lead to a data breach. So, be sure that your employees use a different password for every resource or application. Having strict password guidelines may help strengthen account security across the board. You might also consider assigning passwords for every account.
Ensure Data Encryption
File sharing and accessible data storage will be essential when your team is working remotely. However, file transfer can be another vulnerability. Prioritize data loss prevention by encrypting all data that’s being transmitted. This way, attackers won’t be able to access sensitive information if they were to obtain it.
If you are interested in learning more about cybersecurity tools for remote employees, contact the team at Fortified Health Security. Our cybersecurity specialists focus on data loss prevention in the healthcare industry. Through managed services and a number of security solutions, we can create a network security plan that fits your organizational goals.