Office mobility has skyrocketed over the last decade, with many office systems now being accessed remotely while someone is traveling or working from home. This new “work from anywhere” paradigm has several advantages for a more dynamic and productive workforce, but it also comes with IT security challenges.
Often when staff is traveling, they’re trying to get work done in those moments at the airport and hotel, in between meetings, and generally thinking more about the ability to get a good connection than data security on their tablet or laptop.
Remote workers may give you the ability to hire from any talent pool, regardless of geography and they call in sick less frequently, but do you know the best practices to ensure their connections to your corporate network are as secure as if they were at your office?
These are the types of IT security challenges that we help businesses in NYC and New Jersey overcome daily. Triada Networks has a top cybersecurity services team that specializes in financial firms and ensuring their connections are always safe and secure, no matter how they’re connecting to their network and data.
There are some good rules of thumb to follow when you’re connecting remotely to your office data either from the road or from home. Following them can help you make sure you’re keeping up with industry data security standards and protecting your network from breaches.
Tips for Good IT Security When You’re on the Road or Remote
When it comes to mobile use at work, the train has already left the station with 87% of companies expecting employees to use their personal smartphones for work.
Most applications being released or updated these days include mobile apps and cloud-based collaborative tools to facilitate working from anywhere, and companies have come to expect them.
43% of office workers across 17 countries said their work was highly dependent upon mobile business apps.
So, when you’re working away from the main office, from home or while traveling, how do you ensure good data security practices? Here are some key best practices you can put into place to boost your remote and mobile cybersecurity.
Stay Off Public Wi-Fi
Whether you’re at your local coffee shop or in your hotel room, avoid the urge to connect to a public Wi-Fi so you’re not using mobile data. These networks are unsecure, and when connected, your data can easily be hacked.
To ensure your mobile device doesn’t automatically connect to a public Wi-Fi, turn off the auto-connect feature.
Get a Virtual Private Network (VPN)
A great way to ensure security for workers on the road or working remotely is to get a corporate VPN. These are networks that act as a filter between your team and an online connection. It ensures security no matter where you’re connecting from, even a public Wi-Fi network.
VPNs encrypt the data being sent through them, so hackers can’t access it. They also mask your IP address for additional security.
Use Managed IT Security
Using a trusted security software that includes things like anti-virus and anti-malware protections for any devices connecting to your network is one important step to organizational cybersecurity. But having a service provider that offers managed IT security for your organization offers even more protection, such as:
- Automatic patches and updates
- Securing new staff devices
- Monitoring to ensure nobody’s security app is turned off
- Alerts for any potential security threats to the network
Use a Mobile Device Management Application
With all those smartphones and tablets running around with access to your corporate data, it’s nearly impossible to keep up with login permissions and manage who is accessing which data or programs without a mobile device management application.
This type of application can give you the ability to lock a lost or stolen phone out of your network, manage user permissions, and keep track of application activity.
Have a Written IT Security Policy in Place
If you don’t give proper direction on how workers should handle data when they’re not at the office, it can leave you exposed and at risk of a data breach or compliance violation. Create a clear IT Security Manual that includes your policies for handing client and corporate data while traveling or working from a remote location.
A few of the things you should include are:
- How to handle credit card information
- How to connect to company applications (i.e. not on a public Wi-Fi, or through a VPN)
- What to do with any hand-written client information
- Use of strong passwords or multi-factor authentication
- Any non-approved websites that shouldn’t be visited during work hours
Use Cloud-Based Content Storage
One of the easiest ways to lose corporate digital assets is to have your files spread out over multiple devices, some at the office and some not. Using a cloud-based storage system ensures that all files are stored securely in your chosen cloud environment and remain under company control, easily retrievable when you need them.
Looking for Security Solutions for Your Mobile Office?
From secure cloud services to online storage you can trust, Triada Networks can help you implement sound IT security solutions that encompass your entire workforce, no matter where they are.
Call us for a consultation today and get a free IT Security Report Card! It’s a great way to see where your data security stands. Just call 201-297-7778 or contact us online.