This issue is placed into perspective by a recent survey. 83 per cent of firms reported a considerable rise in remote work activities as a result of the epidemic, according to the poll. Remote employment, according to over 90% of respondents, made cybersecurity efforts far more difficult. In addition, the majority of the firms that took part in the poll were concerned about the security of remote work.
But what is it about remote and hybrid work that makes it so risky in terms of security? The following are the primary cybersecurity issues that hybrid work environments face:
> Control and visibility onto distant endpoints are lacking.
> A larger and more complicated IT footprint makes you more vulnerable to assaults and causes alert fatigue.
> Human vulnerabilities have been amplified.
> Remote employees have a low level of security awareness.
> The corporate protective perimeter has been breached.
> Using typical cybersecurity solutions that do not translate well in a hybrid setting
> Authentication methods that aren't up to par, especially for cloud service.
Set up a security architecture based on zero trust.
A Zero Trust cybersecurity approach presumes that no device or user can be trusted unless it has been confirmed. In contrast to the usual philosophy of "trust, but verify," Zero Trust adheres to the principle of "never trust, always verify." It's an excellent security strategy for any mixed work situation.
Zero Trust is a complex notion that encompasses all aspects of cybersecurity, from endpoint security to user authentication and network security. To use this method on endpoint devices, for example, you'll need to create trust tokens and validate them before providing any access permissions. Trust tokens might be a collection of digital certificates that identify a genuine device, user, or activity uniquely and accurately.
The following tactics can be used to implement Zero Trust on various levels:
> Monitoring of endpoints, backends, and networks continuously
> Control of user authentication based on identity
> Access with the fewest privileges
> Micro-segmentation of a network
Even while things are gradually returning to normal, most businesses are still in the dark. The widespread move to remote work was intended to be a temporary continuity plan to wait out the epidemic, but it appears that telecommuting has become a permanent fixture. According to Gartner, 90% of businesses want to continue with remote work.
Employees should get threat awareness training.
The human aspect is still the weakest link in cybersecurity. The bulk of data breaches nowadays is caused by innocent mistakes, flagrant carelessness, and ignorance on the part of personnel. Giving employees nearly complete control over their working environment exacerbates the situation.
Intensive training is the only way to improve the security posture of your telecommuters. Educate your staff on the following cybersecurity recommended practices for remote work:
> Being aware of the threat (identifying, containing, and reporting threats)
> When working from home, you should practice good online hygiene.
> Best guidelines for passwords
> Protocols for distant data exchange
> Personal device maintenance
> In remote work environments, maintain a professional demeanor.
> A look at the security policies
> Individual cybersecurity roles, duties, and accountability
> Employee training should be done regularly, ideally once a quarter with monthly refresher sessions.
Don't forget to put your employees' danger awareness to the test with frequent assessments and drills. Remember that employee training not only provides your team with necessary information and skills, but it also aids in the establishment of security-conscious business culture.
Make your cloud infrastructure more efficient.
Cloud-based data sharing and communication solutions are essential for remote cooperation. Because of the increased user traffic, these systems have become attractive targets for hackers.
In a hybrid workplace, there are two strategies to reduce cloud risks. First, instead of having a dedicated cloud app or service for each one, consolidate numerous cloud services into a single platform to decrease and optimise your cloud footprint. For example, instead of having a separate cloud service for group chat, video conferencing, and file sharing, you can use Microsoft Teams to access all of those features.
Second, improve your cloud security by activating and implementing additional security protections across all of your hosted services. Safeguard your cloud assets.
Cybersecurity Risks are the Same in All Hybrid Work Environments
A hybrid work environment is any work arrangement that mixes remote and on-site work. Based on the exact ratio of remote and on-site work, such arrangements can be classified into three major categories:
Remote-first: Employees in a remote-first hybrid work environment spend the majority of their time working from various remote locations, while companies maintain physical offices where employees may congregate when required.
This work arrangement makes it much simpler to recruit individuals who would otherwise be unable to commute to work regularly due to the great distance between their homes and the workplace. Fewer options for face-to-face human engagement, as well as possible cooperation issues, are disadvantages.
Office-occasional hybrid work arrangements provide a middle ground solution, with the pendulum not swinging too far on one side. Employees are usually forced to work from the office for a certain amount of time, but the rest of the time they can pick between remote and on-site employment. It's more difficult—but not impossible—to attract job seekers who reside further away from the workplace. Employees and employers alike get the majority of the benefits of the hybrid work paradigm when it is handled appropriately, with few drawbacks.
Office-first: For a long time, we at OSIbeyond have preferred an office-first hybrid work environment. Our staff work remotely on Fridays and work from the office the rest of the week. We've discovered that this method of working is the most effective.
We've discovered that this mode of working is the most productive and allows for in-person cooperation, which more than compensates for its drawbacks, such as the additional time spent travelling each week.
Despite their variations, these three forms of hybrid work environments all pose the same cybersecurity dangers because they dismantle the network perimeter, which was once the primary focus of traditional cybersecurity efforts.