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How Cyber Security is Changing the Way We Work Remotely

By Tim Hinchliffe 24 April, 2020

laptop with code on screen

Cyber security has always played a role in the way we work remotely, but as more people are working from home than ever before the importance of cyber security is even greater.

With workforces experiencing a shift to telework, cyber criminals are increasing attacks on unaware teleworkers, making remote work cyber security all the more necessary.

Both veteran remote workers and work from home newcomers are equal targets for exploitation by bad actors, but thankfully there are some simple cyber security solutions readily available that are changing the way we work remotely.

Thanks to good work being done in cyber security PR, these simple solutions are making their rounds through trusted media sources, as the need for fresh and accurate information from industry experts and thought leaders alike becomes evermore present.

This is how cyber security is changing the way we work remotely.

Paying Attention to Detail

More people working online means there are more people trying to exploit their goodwill.

Remote workers have to pay more attention to cyber security and scrutinize every email that comes their way as criminals are looking to take advantage of them in increasingly convincing ways.

However, armed with a little cyber security knowhow, teleworkers can stop these deceitful schemes in their tracks.

Phishing is one of the most common tactics employed by cyber criminals. This is when criminals try to deceive individuals to give their password voluntarily.

How do they do this?

By pretending to be a representative of a legitimate company and asking you to click on a link to renew your password.

The link, however, goes directly to the hacker, and from there they can access your personal information.

By simply being aware of this tactic and paying attention to detail, especially in emails, is a solid cyber security weapon in your arsenal. A phishing scam is only effective if you click on the bad link, so be on the lookout for any suspicious emails from people you don’t know.

The same goes for enticing work from home scams that prey on people who are recently out of work and looking to earn income just to get by. Scam artists will tell victims they can earn cash by acting as intermediaries for sending and receiving money between third parties, and then ask for the victim’s financial information.

This is known as a Money Mule scheme, and the FBI warns, “Watch out for online job postings and emails from individuals promising you easy money for little to no effort.”

Paying attention to detail is just one way in which cyber security is changing the way we work remotely.

Unexpected Cyber Security Flaws in Video Meetings

Office spaces all over the world have been rendered temporarily out of order. 

Video meetings have since become the go to solution for companies looking to maintain some element of face-to-face communication – albeit virtually.

Video conferencing app Zoom has seen its active users skyrocket from 10 million to 200 million in a period of just three months – from January to March – with a further 100 million users added in April, bringing the new total to a whopping 300 million.

The unprecedented influx of users presented unforeseen challenges and unexpected cyber security flaws inherent in the app.

“Zoom bombing” quickly became a colloquial phrase in the business world as users discovered just how easy it was to drop-in on random meetings, something that was overlooked when the app was designed.

“We did not design the product with the foresight that, in a matter of weeks, every person in the world would suddenly be working, studying, and socializing from home,” wrote Zoom Founder and CEO Eric Yuan.

Having uninvited “guests” popping up unexpectedly highlighted the need for increased cyber security measures in video conferencing to protect the privacy of businesses all over the world.

Necessity is the mother of invention, as they say, and Zoom quickly responded to the cyber security threat by updating its safety features and educating users on how they can adjust their settings to best prevent Zoom bombing.

Cyber Security Tools for Businesses

Businesses are particularly vulnerable to certain types of cyber threats beyond phishing and Zoom bombing.

Without proper cyber security implementation, companies that host their data on the cloud are susceptible to DDoS attacks, which can be devastating to businesses, with infrastructure failure costing them an average $100,000 every hour.

The US was hit with almost 180,000 DDoS attacks just in March, and these attacks can bring down websites by flooding them with bots and denying actual users from entering. 

If a company isn’t prepared for a DDoS attack and gets hit by one, it can forget about remote working because the entire network will be inoperable and it will take precious time, money, and resources to fix.

But there are tools available to prevent these kinds of attacks. 

For example, Cloudflare offers the largest DDoS protection service in the market, and business is currently soaring — being one of the top 4 cyber security companies responding to Covid-19.

Another way cyber security is changing the way we work remotely is through a tool known as Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) software, which secures and automates telework.

As remote teams share login details, financial operations, and other sensitive company information, that information remains vulnerable to cyber attacks.

However, “UEM provides 360-degree protection for all corporate data, apps, and devices,” while “Passcodes, device and disk encryption provide physical device security and prevent unauthorized access to devices,” according to Hexnode CEO Apu Pavithran, who is an expert in endpoint management solutions.

Other benefits of UEM include, “restrictions that limit the device usage to focus only on work tasks, internet security that blocks malicious websites, managed domains that stop emails from unwanted domains from being opened, and blacklist apps that prevent unwanted apps being installed,” according to the Hexnode CEO.

The Bottom Line

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for cyber security is at an all time high, especially as teams work remotely.

Companies working in cyber security are in a unique position to help thousands of businesses that are facing new cyber challenges that they hadn’t previously encountered before.

One search for “cyber security” on Google News will reveal the increasing demand for cyber security solutions across a wide range of industries.

The demand is great, and not everybody can pay top dollar for the services of large corporations, and therein lies a great opportunity for cyber security startups right now if only they know how to reach the right audience.

Cyber security startups can thrive against their big cyber corporation counterparts through a smart and thoroughly comprehensive PR strategy that gets them noticed in the right places for the right reasons.

Not only can media coverage boost company recognition, it can also bring in new clients that are in need of specific services that they didn’t know were already available.


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