Working from home is becoming increasingly more popular every year. Whether you work for yourself or are doing much of your regular job remotely, it’s a trend that’s definitely on the increase. The COVID scare has accelerated the work from home scenario as well, and this is likely a situation that many employers will stick with.
While there are distinct advantages to working from home, when it comes to business and employees working remotely, there can be some security risks, and that’s what we’ll take a look at in this article.
#1 – Increased Reliance On the internet Makes You More Vulnerable To Cyber Attacks
The very fact that employees are working from home usually means an increase in reliance on the internet to either get work done, or share the work that has been completed. There is also the need for increased online collaboration due to working remotely.
The more information and interaction that takes place online, the higher the possibility people working from home, and the businesses they represent, will be open to cyber attacks.
#2 – Remote Workers May Not Be As Diligent
When working from home rather than in the usual office environment, employees might become a bit lax when it comes to online security measures. With a focus on cyber security within the office, workers are generally more mindful of the risks and are more careful as a result.
In a home environment, the mindset often is more relaxed and potentially less-focused on things such as online security measures.
#3 – Antivirus Software May Not Be Updated
Another thing that could cause a potential issue with an employee working from home – particularly if they’re using their own computer – is outdated antivirus software, or maybe they don’t have any antivirus software installed at all.
With outdated or an absence of antivirus software, the employee’s computer is going to be vulnerable to cyber attacks, ransomware downloads, Trojans, key loggers and all manner of malware that could sneak its way onto their computer.
#4 – Increased Danger of Phishing Attacks
One of the key reasons why phishing emails might pose more a problem for employees working from home is a lack of due diligence. In a regular work/office environment, workers will be more wary of suspect emails or pop-ups and be more cautious of them for fear of doing the wrong thing.
If a hacker wanted to get really tricky, they could even pose as another member of the workforce, enticing an employee to click a link in an email thinking it’s from a coworker, when it’s not.
Being more vulnerable to phishing emails goes back to point two on this list about being more lax when it comes to cyber security measures at home.
#5 – Home Setups Are Often Less Secure Than Office IT Systems
Many businesses that rely heavily on IT will invest a lot of time and money into making their business systems secure. This includes things like cyber security solutions and possibly even hiring computer experts on an ongoing basis to look after their systems and keep them secure.
Chances are, this isn’t going to be the case in most Australian households. The average home isn’t going to deploy the amount of cyber security a business would invest in, so home IT systems are not likely to be anywhere near as secure.
#6 – Employees Might Use Weak Passwords On They Own Devices
If employees are going to be working on their own devices from home, then some sort of policy needs to be in place to ensure they select strong (and different) passwords for what they do online, whether it be accessing their own accounts or work-related applications and collaboration tools.
Passwords with a mix of uppercase, lowercase and symbols are highly recommended, and possibly using a password manager might help employees with this.
IT Support Cairns and Townsville
To provide the best cyber security services and IT support for your employees working from home, get in touch with Future Computers for both advice and the implementation of security measures for your business.
We also offer expert IT solutions, computer repairs, equipment upgrades and more. For all your IT requirements in the local area, get in touch and have a chat with our friendly staff.