Today’s workforce is increasingly mobile. A whopping 95% of business owners 34 and younger facilitate remote work arrangements for their employees. That number is only marginally smaller (83%) for older business owners.
While increased mobility might lead to more employee loyalty and talent retention, it also means more potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities for a business. Each remote employee represents a unique data set that needs to be monitored—yet only half of businesses surveyed have updated their security policies for remote employees over the past year. Such a gap might present a challenge—especially if you let the threat of hackers scare you.
Here are four steps small to mid-sized businesses can implement to protect the cybersecurity of remote employees:
- Limit the use of public unsecured networks. Remote employees working out of a coffee shop or other public location often access Wi-Fi through an unsecured network, increasing the chance of a phishing attack. Hackers can extract critical passwords or other important data from unsecured networks or create landing pages that look eerily similar to ones that employees are comfortable using. Private homes can present a risk, too; if your employees often work from home, they should maintain a secure VPN connection that encrypts and protects company data.
- Review cybersecurity policies and training on a regular basis. Don’t assume that employees understand the importance of cybersecurity or how to implement the right policies to reinforce it. Conducting periodic training for all remote and onsite workers about using secure passwords, setting up VPN connections, and recognizing phishing attacks prevent a crisis before it happens.
- Make endpoint security essential. It’s important to implement mobile device management for company-provided mobile tablets and cellphones, as well as updating malware prevention software for all remote employees. Additionally, a centralized management system that automatically pushes out updates to all company devices at once can help.
- Work with a trusted partner for cybersecurity and IT strategy. Small to mid-sized businesses don’t always have the in-house expertise to address today’s changing cybersecurity landscape. This becomes especially complicated as the number of remote workers increases. Bringing in a proven IT provider like CMIT Solutions can help your business focus on what it does best while trusting critical cybersecurity strategies to the experts.
The growing mobile workforce and the increasing frequency of cyberattacks on small businesses call for a targeted cybersecurity strategy. With CMIT Solutions by their side, small businesses can find the peace of mind they need to manage all their IT challenges — no matter the size of their remote workforce.
Contact CMIT Solutions to learn more about how outsourcing IT solutions can protect your remote employees and your business.