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5 Considerations for Securing Your Remote Workforce and Cloud Storage

by Zivaro, on Sep 14, 2020 4:21:04 PM

There are more remote workers today than ever before. There are also increasing volumes of data stored in the cloud. Here are five ways to secure your employees and data. 

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This year’s pandemic forced millions of workers globally into unfamiliar remote work territory. And organizations not equipped to handle the infrastructure and security requirements of a sudden remote workforce explosion are still scrambling to protect employees and data.

Many are too late. 

Here’s why: an explosion of remote workers and ill-equipped organizations presents an unprecedented opportunity for cybercriminals. You don’t need to look any further than Zoom to see what happens when a business isn’t ready to handle a sudden increase in remote workers (and individuals). 

New users flocked to Zoom when stay-at-home orders drove employees out of their offices and into their homes. Hackers (including teenagers) had no trouble disrupting meetings, remote classrooms, and virtual family chats. And now, nearly 500,000 hacked Zoom accounts are available cheaply, or free on the Dark Web. Zoom wasn’t ready to become the world’s largest virtual meeting provider. And most organizations weren’t smart enough to educate employees on password and collaboration security best-practices. 

Most Zivaro customers are protected from “Zoombombing” because they’re not using Zoom. We’ve outfitted them with best-in-class collaboration tools from Cisco (like Webex and Webex Teams) and established security infrastructures and protocols that adhere to the highest governmental standards. We also help customers with employee education around security best practices and establish cybersecurity incident response plans, so an attack doesn’t sideline them. 

Are your remote employees, network infrastructure, collaboration tools, and cloud resources prepared for the eventual attack? If you’re not ready today, we’ll get you a few steps closer.

Keep reading to learn five ways you can secure your remote employees and data in the cloud

1.      Educate your remote workforce.

Employees are your first line of defense against cyberattacks. They are also you’re most significant weakness. Because even the most comprehensive security policies fail if your people don’t understand the role they play in its implementation. With employees remotely accessing internal resources and data, often using insecure Internet connections, workers must vigilantly protect themselves and your business from cyberthreats. 

Remote employees must know, understand, and follow security best practices and procedures, and stay aware of the latest phishing scams and malware threats. In times of uncertainty, adhering to security protocols is even more critical. Coronavirus allowed hackers to capitalize on public fears as they spread misinformation and preyed on unsuspecting victims. Many posed as governmental agencies and relief organizations to extort money from businesses and individuals. Ensuring your employees understand the latest threats and arming them with clear guidelines can help you maintain network security. 

2.      Establish a VPN (Virtual Private Network). 

Enterprise networks often include cybersecurity features to protect applications and data from unauthorized access. But the systems aren’t typically designed for remote access. On-site employees connect to the network from company-provided devices, and each device includes up-to-date software and configurations. Also, server connections are made inside a secure environment via routers within the firewall perimeter. 

With employees remotely accessing the network comes a range of potential security issues -  smart organizations set a VPN for remote network access. Virtual Private Networks extend enterprise network security features to public Internet connections, giving remote workers a way to access the company network securely. VPNs are relatively simple to deploy and manage, and while they’re not the most cutting edge security technology, they’re a baseline requirement for organizations with remote workers. 

3.      Control your cloud data access. 

You only want employees with proper clearance to access your data stored in the cloud. Establishing access control policies lets you manage users attempting to enter your cloud environment. Overseeing access control also enables you to assign policies and access rights to specific users, so, for example, low-level cloud users and high-level security administrators have different access rights. 

4.      Continuously monitor your cloud environment for security threats. 

Legacy security solutions focused on defending threats once an attack occurred. Fortunately, security technologies have evolved. Dangers can hide in your cloud environment, waiting to strike, but today’s security solutions can stop network infrastructure threats before an attack. By continuously monitoring your cloud environment, you can find hidden network threats and take proactive steps to remove them. 

5.      Encrypt your cloud data.

You need to ensure your cloud data is appropriately encrypted. Your cloud environment must support data encryption for information moving to and from the cloud. If you’re using a cloud service provider today, learn about their encryption policies. Cloud providers have guidelines to demonstrate how they protect data stored on their servers - this is essential information to have before any cloud migration. 

Our five tips can help protect remote workers and data, but they’re only the start. Get in touch for a FREE security discovery call - find out where your business stands and learn how Zivaro can take the work out of securing your data and employees. 

Topics:Cloud ServicesSecurityZivaroremote working

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