Expansion of Remote Work and Cybersecurity Implications

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work has transitioned from a convenient option to a standard practice for professionals across various industries. While this shift offers unparalleled flexibility and accessibility, it paved the way for a surge in cybersecurity incidents.

The expansion of remote work and the adoption of work-from-anywhere policies have introduced many cybersecurity challenges. As outlined in Gartner’s “7 top trends in cybersecurity for 2022,” the increased remote work has significantly broadened the attack surface, making it a prime target for cybercriminals. Consequently, security enhancements for remote employees and risk-based vulnerability management have become top priorities for Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) worldwide.

So, how does remote work impact cybersecurity?

As more people work remotely, the attack surface grows, requiring security for many endpoints and networks. Shadow IT increases this danger since employees frequently use unapproved technology to circumvent security measures. Decentralized work settings reduce dependence on traditional perimeter defenses such as firewalls, necessitating new ways for efficiently combating cyber threats.

Additionally, the shift to remote work has highlighted various cybersecurity risks, including:

1. Lack of security talent

Many organizations need help to recruit and retain qualified cybersecurity professionals, leading to inadequate securing remote workers.

    2. Less Oversight by Security Staff

    Remote work diminishes security teams’ visibility, making monitoring network traffic and effectively detecting potential threats challenging.

    3. Susceptibility to Cyberscam Attacks

    Remote workers are more susceptible to cyberscam attacks, as cybercriminals exploit their reliance on email communication.

    4. Unsecured Hardware and Networks

    Using personal devices and unsecured networks increases the risk of data breaches and unauthorized access.

    Remote Work Security

    Effective cybersecurity measures for remote work settings involve safeguarding remote access with VPNs, antivirus software, strong password policies, and regular software updates to address vulnerabilities. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds an extra layer of security, while employee training on cybersecurity best practices, like identifying phishing attempts, is crucial. Endpoint security solutions monitor and restrict device access, ensuring only authorized workers connect securely.

    Strengthening Data Protection Programs:

    Identify and protect sensitive data by implementing encryption and cloud-based file-sharing solutions.

    Establishing a Strong Vulnerability Management Program:

    Prioritize and address high-risk vulnerabilities to reduce the organization’s exposure to cyber threats.

    Deploying User Behavior Analytics (UBA):

    Utilize machine learning algorithms to detect suspicious user activities and potential credential compromises.

    Ensuring Proper Cloud Configurations and Access:

    Implement stringent access controls and regularly audit cloud environments to mitigate misconfigurations.

    Fostering a cybersecurity awareness culture is paramount in mitigating the risks associated with remote work. Organizations can fortify their defenses and safeguard sensitive information in an increasingly remote-centric world by educating employees about potential threats and promoting secure work practices.

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    With nearly 50 years of experience working in technology, Kobargo is skilled in all matters of Information technology. If you’re interested in outsourcing your IT infrastructure, contact us today to learn how we can help.



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