Remote work is a risky affair. While it has proven effective to aid social distancing at workplaces, it has also increased cyber threats. It is easier to ensure that hackers are kept at bay through various defense tactics when everyone is inside the office. Outside, the susceptibility of falling victim to a social engineering attack becomes much higher.
Based on HLB’s Cybersecurity Report, global businesses have experienced a rise in cyberattacks by 65% . Most organizations either saw a breach or a hacking attempt by malicious actors. There has been an increase in social engineering cases due to an exponential .
Network security challenges are different in remote work situations. Allowing remote access to a company’s digital files increases threats from hackers. Confidential data can be stolen or held hostage during a ransomware attack.
Ensuring network security when all employees work remotely is a different kind of challenge. This article analyses essential network security basics that you and your employees should know.
Tips for a Safe and Secure Remote Work Environment
As explained above, network security in remote work is challenging. But some practices will assure effective countering of cybersecurity threats.
Implement Defense in Depth
Defense in depth is a very important practice when it comes to securing a network. It refers to defense measures put in place across the OSI layers to counter cyber threats. This process proves helpful in countering a cyberattack, since in case one layer fails, another one takes over.
Some popular defense in depth network security tools are VPNs, firewalls, and antivirus software tools. It is always advisable to use VPN and antivirus software when your employees are working remotely.
Cybersecurity Awareness Training
It is a known fact that most network-related threats occur due to employee negligence. External vendors and remote workers have increased the risk of data breaches in 2020. There are limited face-to-face interactions under these new conditions, and email (or chat applications) have become the go-to communication platform. Malicious attackers have started exploiting this weak link by launching phishing attacks, malware scams, social engineering attacks, etc.
You need to ensure that network security basics are clear to all your employees. You should conduct cybersecurity awareness training sessions every three months and cover all the recent cases of network breaches. Network security sessions are also a regular reminder of company cybersecurity policies. Apart from this, businesses should also encourage their IT and network admins to pursue network security certification to elevate their skills.
Understand the Enemy
To beat a hacker, you should think like a hacker. The first step to a secure network is knowing the basics and understanding how the threat actor thinks. As a business owner, you should make sure that your employees understand cybersecurity basics and know about threats like malware, social engineering, ransomware, DDoS, and other tricks through which hackers thrive.
Once your security engineers know about the attack methods, they should start learning about network security programs/concepts like networking, cloud solutions, ethical hacking, databases, routing and switching, Windows client and server, Linux administration, network protocols, and operating systems.
You can easily defend your network against malicious attacks once you understand your IT network and attack methods.
Secure File Sharing
Remote work culture doesn’t exclude the distribution of sensitive documents and private files. Chances of data leaks increase if file sharing happens via untrusted file sharing channels which could be used for limited sharing capacity emails.
To prevent this, you should establish secure file-sharing policies to guarantee business continuity. Apart from this, cloud storage solutions are also recommended for safe file exchange. The system is secure as it only allows people with valid credentials to access or edit the file and records every change.
Improve Your Blue Team Security
Every company is working hard on improving the state of their IT infrastructure so that they don’t fall victim to a cyberattack. The demand for network security or Blue Team Security professionals has increased across the globe. This is the right time for you to consider hiring a Blue Team security officer as they are trained to not only counter a cyber threat but to thwart it by anticipating activities in the network. A network security officer will prove helpful in securing remote offices. As stated above, you can always train your IT admins to transition into a similar role without leaving your company.
Learn Network Security with Certified Network Defender
Seasoned network security professionals know network security basics such as analyzing data flow, user behavior, mitigating risks, and helping your organization stay compliant with all the necessary regulations. They can also help you reduce the financial and business impact of a breach when it happens.
After successfully completing network security certification program, you’ll qualify for the following job roles:
- Entry-level Network Administrators
- Entry-level Network Security Administrators
- Data Security Analyst
- Junior Network Security Engineer
- Junior Network Defense Technician
- Security Analyst
- Security Operator
Certified Network Defender (CND v2) is a course designed to train aspiring network security professionals. The program includes the latest tools and techniques necessary for countering threats from cybercriminals. It is one of the few programs in the market that is 100% focused on network security and defense. Industry experts have designed Certified Network Defender v2 to help IT professionals transition into network security officer roles.