Putting remote work security to the test

Millions of people around the world have been advised to work from home to reduce their chances of contracting or passing on the coronavirus. But for many organisations this will be a first-time experiment with home working on a wide scale and the hasty changes made by many IT departments are carrying significant risks. In China, where remote work policies are historically uncommon, the remote collaboration tool Zoom saw a single-day increase in downloads of 15%. 

While remote working has been growing in popularity, many organisations don’t have the technology in place to cope with mass remote working. Not only is the spike in home workers putting a burden on technology infrastructures, but it’s also bringing considerable new threats to data security. While some employers might worry about the logistics around remote working, the larger concern is actually securing the proprietary and business-critical data modern organisations rely on. Outside of the corporate network, devices are easily susceptible to attacks from third parties and cybercriminals. Attacking these unsecured endpoints can reveal the employee’s login credentials to cybercriminals so they can access the company’s system, or even use ransomware to lock company data – which happened to the NextCloud service last fall.

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