More and more people are working remotely. In fact, a study found that 53% of employees would prefer to work from home. That’s because remote work offers a lot of great benefits, like increased productivity and flexibility. But there are also some common security issues that come with remote work, which we’ll explore in this article. We’ll look at the reasons why hiring remotely is a good idea, and what to do when hiring someone for a remote position. So if you’re looking to expand your team through remote work- read on!
You’re opening your files to an unknown person
First and foremost, one of the biggest security issues that come with remote work is that there’s no guarantee that your employees will be who they say they are. How can you know for sure if someone applying for a remote position is who they say they are? They could easily give you false information about their qualifications and background- or even use credentials from someone else! And because you don’t have access to their computer, it’s impossible to tell if the information on your screen was actually typed by them during an interview. That means that it’s possible for people to pose as other individuals and steal files related to an entire project or clients.
Prevent this security issue: Make sure to check all new remote employees’ identification. And while some security issues can’t be prevented (like an employee quitting and sending impersonators to take over), make sure it’s not possible for someone to send impersonators to your company in the first place by performing background checks on potential employees.
Taking credit for someone else’s work
Another common security issue with remote work is people stealing files and taking credit for them under another person’s name. Whether this is done out of spite or just because the perpetrator wants more recognition, this type of theft presents a serious problem if you don’t have a way to monitor how your files are being handled.
Prevent this security issue: If you’re hiring for a remote position, make sure it’s either an independent contractor role or part of the hired company’s staff. Both options require employees to sign non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) which protect both parties from theft and intellectual property infringement.
Using a personal computer for work
There’s a reason why businesses invest in high-security solutions- hackers are constantly looking for ways to break into company computers. The best bet would be investing in better security for remote work, so there are no doubts in your mind. Your personal computer is also at risk if it shares the same network as your business’ computer system- even if you’re using a strong password and virus protection! So what happens when an employee uses their work laptop from home?
Prevent this security issue: Provide employees with company-owned laptops or desktops instead of allowing them to use their own personal devices for their remote role. If you want an exception, make sure they have access to two different secure networks (one for business, one for personal.) That way, if their computer is compromised while on the personal network, it doesn’t affect their work.
In our digital world, hackers have a number of different ways to access information from unsuspecting employees- including their email accounts. In fact, more than half of all phishing emails are sent to company inboxes for the purpose of stealing sensitive data and causing havoc.
Prevent this security issue: There’s no foolproof way to prevent your employees from clicking on potentially dangerous links or giving out personal details that can be used against them. However, you can increase your protection by limiting access as much as possible and setting up strong filters to block suspicious activity.
Leaving multiple work stations logged in
This is another obvious security issue with remote work… but it still happens! That’s because many people forget that they’re leaving their computer unlocked when they get up to use the restroom or grab a quick drink. And even if they’re careful to close multiple programs, it’s still possible for someone else with access to the network to get in.
Prevent this security issue: There are two ways to solve this problem – increase awareness about secure remote work habits through regular training sessions and make sure employees understand why it can’t be allowed, or invest in an additional solution that ensures no one else is logged onto the same computer while you’re away from your desk.
Using strong passwords everywhere
As the previous point showed, employees are often carelessly swapping between work and personal computers. That means they’re also leaving their passwords around for hackers to find… whether it’s through social media or another account that was compromised.
Prevent this security issue: It can’t be stressed enough- make sure your employees understand how important it is to create different passwords for every single one of their accounts.
The remote work security issues are real and can cost a company time, money, reputation- but they don’t have to. With the right training on secure habits or additional solutions in place, you’ll be able to protect your business from these common pitfalls while still embracing all of the benefits that come with hiring remotely! So if you’re looking for more productivity without having to invest in an office space or staff… this article is just what you need.