Cybersecurity Tips for Remote Employees

Both COVID-19 precautions and evolving technology have led us to the world of remote work that we see today. Although lower costs and the need for fewer resources are great perks for employers, the downside is a potential rise in cybercrime. When employees are in the office, they typically have an IT team to protect them. At home, they’re on their own.

If your company has transitioned to a remote workforce, then the first step is to inform your employees of the threats and teach them how to protect their systems. Let’s discuss some talking points below.

The Danger Of Cybercrime

To provide your team with the proper guidance regarding cybersecurity, you need to educate them about what hackers are after, and that is the data of your customers. Anything from social security and credit card numbers to email addresses can be sold by hackers on the dark web or used to commit identity fraud. If that weren’t enough, hackers can also infiltrate your systems and take control of your devices which prevents you from assisting your customers.

The myriad of potential cyber threats are why more industries than ever are seeking protection. Even real estate and the automotive industry are at risk because once a hacker gains access, they can have full control and commit any of these countless malicious acts. Remote workers need to realize that if their company is hacked and the customers find out about it, then that could result in a significant hit to a business’s reputation and finances. It is in the employee’s interest to protect against hackers so they can ensure the security of their jobs.

Common Scams

The best way that remote workers can protect their computers is to be aware of common scams so they cannot be easily deceived. 

For instance, the phishing email continues to be a successful scam for hackers because they can easily disguise a malicious email to make it look like it is coming from management, so employees may be more willing to click on the link or attachment that is enclosed. If they do, the hacker can gain access to their computer and steal the data within. Employees should be informed never to open an email or click a link unless they were expecting to receive it.

Some employees decide to take their work out to public places like restaurants or coffee shops, but threats lurk there as well. One threat to be aware of is a Wi-Fi scam where a hacker sets up a fake network that looks like the real deal, but if the employee connects, then they open the door to hackers who can infiltrate their systems. When working out in public, employees should be advised to ask the owner of the establishment for the correct network before connecting. 

Hackers can even infiltrate your video conferences by stealing your credentials and entering the meeting behind the scenes. Once there, they can listen in on corporate information or steal data. If you are on camera and you have company information or personal data in the background, then hackers can easily see and steal that information. That is why, in addition to calling from a well-lit space, you should also have a professional background that is free of distractions and personal details. You can also insert a digital background with programs like Zoom.

Basic Protections

With so many potential scams, remote workers must have the basic protections in place to guard their devices against hackers. That starts with complex passwords that include letters, numbers, and special characters. Friend, pet, and street names should not be used, as hackers can guess that information by searching your social media. It is also wise to have a form of two-factor authentication, like a fingerprint or face scan for extra protection.

All remote employees should also have antivirus software installed on their personal and work devices, and scans should be run weekly to catch and eliminate threats. That antivirus software should be updated whenever a new version comes along and so should all of your other programs. The newest version of your software will have protections against the most recent cyber threats.

Finally, it is a wise idea for all employees to be placed on a virtual private network. By utilizing a VPN, their location will be disguised, and any incoming and outgoing communications will be encrypted so they cannot be read by hackers if intercepted. Of course, if your employees ever notice suspicious activity, they should report it to management immediately.

As you can see, there are many safeguards that remote employees can put in place to protect themselves and their company. Educate your team and continue your business in confidence.


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