Risky Remote Workstations
How to maintain cybersecurity when working remotely
With the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID–19) , many companies, municipalities and schools are urging employees and students to complete work from home at a moment’s notice. The transition from an in-office workforce to remote employees should be a coordinated effort between management and IT within your organization or municipality. Security should not be overlooked no matter how quickly this change must take place. Here is how to protect your business and your staff when working remotely.
Your organization should have policy on the proper and secure procedures. If not, a policy should be created and put in place. Make sure that staff is aware of rules and regulations for remote work. Some things to cover may be:
- What devices are employees allowed to use for remote work?
- How should data be accessed and transferred?
- Who should staff contact if they have an issue?
- How do employees communicate with each other and maintain consistent workflow from home?
- How should employees be monitored / audited?
Allowing employees to log into their work computers remotely can help to eliminate the use of unapproved or insecure software. Employees should not be allowed to work from or store corporate data on personal, insecure devices.
Two-factor authentication should be in place to protect company infrastructure. Employees should be even more mindful when working on public WiFi networks. Educate staff on the use of remote access and virtual prival networks (VPN)to keep company data secure. Additionally, any device used for company or municipality business should be secured with a password.
Attacks often happen through the weakest link. Sometimes, the weakest link is an unpatched software vulnerability. This risk increases exponentially when employees work from their home networks. While IT cannot go into each person’s home, they can educate employees on how to better secure their home networks.
It is important to keep staff safe and healthy. Working remotely might be the solution. Do not wait until it’s too late and put your business or municipality at risk. Begin creating policies and training now so that employees are ready to work remotely if necessary.
If you are an employee who has questions about their home office, please do not hesitate to contact IT. It is prudent to address any issues before you are asked to work from home for any length of time.
Information for Pennsylvania Municipalities
There is a lot to think about when asking employees to stay home, dealing with employee fears about getting sick, and how to handle declaring disasters in your borough. PSAB worked in conjunction with Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC to put together a very informative webinar on how to handle COVID-19 in your borough.
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