Remote Working Security Done Right

remote working security

Last year forced many businesses to start working from home, almost overnight. This meant they had to make quick and sharp adjustments in their practices if they wanted to ensure remote working security and stay compliant with any regulations they’re bound to. The following are a series of best practices any business should consider right now. And they’ll be particularly relevant to sectors that handle large amounts of sensitive information: financial, health, government, etc.

 

Controlling access to customer data

remote working security

Particular care must be taken over protecting personal customer information. According to the FCA, this includes details such as bank details, medical records, national insurance numbers, and addresses. In practice, this involves a number of measures such as regularly testing your staff’s data and remote working security knowledge as well as employing a careful recruitment policy complete with credit and criminal record checks.

 

Controlled Data Sharing Agreements

These outline certain standards to how data is shared between organisations, why the data is being shared and how it is shared at every stage of the relationship. More than anything, such agreements help organisations remain clear about their roles so that no security stone is left unturned and remote working security is maintained.

 

Create models for information usage whilst denying suspicious access

In an ideal world, all organisations would be able to separate any sensitive data from an internet connection. This is known as ‘air gapping’. According to LSE, the next best thing is to implement strict access rights and track every access whilst archiving any state of the system. This is especially important for the financial industry. MiFID II regulation demands practices such as brokers making detailed reporting of their trades and recording their telephone conversations; potentially very damaging should such data fall into the wrong hands. Tools like Varonis, SolarWinds ARM, and NetWrix can help by doing things like determining the role of the user and fixing permissions.

 

Give access on a ‘need-to-know’ basis

Similarly, any employee should be bound by the principle of least privilege. This means giving them only access to the data they need. The idea being that should an attacker gain control of their account, their potential for doing damage is limited.

 

Formal Work from Home and Remote Work Policies

remote working securityEmployees behaving irresponsibly can be the biggest risk to remote working security. There are the basics such as ensuring all employees stick to remote working security basics and everyone has the standard technical measures in place – strong passwords, antivirus, etc. Beyond that, sufficient training and onboarding of employees will be the cornerstone of any remote working security policy.

 

Cyber Awareness Training

The FCA suggests enforcing training at all levels to ensure remote working security. The FCA stated that organisations should offer granular programs that are tailored to specific risks employees face. It needs to be a company-wide shift. The FCA suggests an organisation recruits cyber security ‘champions’ to influence remote working security policy and the online behaviour of every employee.

Remote working security can be supported by having the right tools in place, namely in the shape of Microsoft 365.

Beyond that, to ensure remote working security, Support Tree offers a comprehensive Secure Remote Work service. This service can help your team to work securely and help your business adhere to its compliance requirements.

To find out more about it, book a free consultation today.