While some people have enjoyed working remotely over the past year, others want to get back to an in-person office setting. This has created many hybrid office environments, with businesses allowing employees to choose the work environment that works better for them. Hybrid work is a great option — as long as cyber security is still a focus wherever employees are working.
Here are some ways you can set up your business’ hybrid office environment in a cyber safe way.
Have employees secure their network
Working from home means that employees are working on private home Wi-Fi networks. This can become a problem if these networks aren’t secured. There are a few things that employees can do to secure their home Wi-Fi networks, such as:
- Enabling firewalls on all of their devices
- Changing the default password on their Wi-Fi network to something strong and unique (better yet, use a passphrase!)
- Changing their router’s encryption to WPA2-PSK or WPA2-Personal
- Creating a guest network for their personal smart devices and visitors
Set up employee devices to help
Make sure employees are updating their software as soon as possible. This applies to updates for major operating systems and applications. Updates help devices run at optimal speeds, which ensures your business operates at peak efficiency. They also install the latest security features to protect your organization’s information and devices. Enabling automatic updates on work devices is a great way to make sure they are being installed as soon as they are available.
Anti-virus software should be installed on all devices. Anti-virus software works as a last line of defence against threats that slip past your other defences. Many anti-virus software vendors have business offerings for your entire operation. If employees are using their own devices, suggest or provide them with a reputable anti-virus software to protect both them and everyone else in your business.
Have strong policies in place
To ensure your employees follow cyber security best practices, have an extensive cyber security plan in place with set policies. Your cyber security plan can include steps to secure a home Wi-Fi network, explain what phishing scams are and how to protect yourself against them, and what employees need to do if they encounter a ransomware attack.
Your cyber security policy can also help establish what access is needed for different areas of your business. For instance, if your business has social media accounts, not all employees need access to them. Limiting access to only those employees who need it is a good way to prevent unauthorized access to your accounts. If you have a strong policy in place that includes both in-person and remote working guidelines, your hybrid office environment will be better protected.
Hybrid office environments are a relatively new option and, like most new things, they may take some time to get right. If your business is using a hybrid model, make sure cyber security remains a priority. Show employees how to set up a secure private Wi-Fi network, set up devices to help protect information, and put a cyber security plan in place for both in-person and remote employees. If you follow these steps, your new hybrid work environment will be more cyber safe.