The past year has been full of unexpected situations -- from a global pandemic that required the majority of Americans to work from home to a tidal shift in the way we do business. In-person business trips to client and vendor locations have been severely curtailed, requiring technology to keep up with the collaborative needs of a fast-moving, modern organization. It's not surprising that cybercriminals have stepped into the gap that is often left when staff members shift their operations offsite or to less-than-perfectly-secure home-based office locations.
With data breaches costing organizations an average of $3.92 million and more than 11,000 exploitable vulnerabilities being tracked by cybersecurity experts, it may only be a matter of time before your organization falls victim to this frightening trend of attacks.
Top Cybersecurity Risks Facing Your Business
Many businesses have chosen to continue allowing remote work for some or all of their employees. The cost savings to both the staff member and to the organization can be significant, with everything from operating to transportation costs being slashed. Unfortunately, this also means that many companies have employees working on their personal PCs or mobile devices, with limited support or control from a centralized IT operation. This is causing some challenges for IT departments that are struggling to keep up with the growing demand for immediate access to sensitive corporate systems and information.
- Endpoint Security Gaps
"Organizations of all kinds are facing an uptick in email-based threats, endpoint-security gaps and other problems as a result of the sudden switch to a fully remote workforce,” says William Altman, Senior Analyst at the Global Cyber Center of NYC, operated by SOSA. Without adequate oversight, IoT devices within the organization can quickly become out of control.
- Lack of Secure Home WiFi
Personal WiFi isn't necessarily built to have the same levels of protection as a corporate solution, with limited monitoring capabilities and only automated notifications of a potential breach or security hazard. Companies are struggling to help individuals shore up the protection for their personal connections with a wide range of solutions from network connection keys to multi-factor authentication.
- Improper Password Protocol
Password requirements and business rules around how often passwords should be changed can quickly go by the wayside when you're faced with an army of virtual workers. Everything from mobile devices to connection portals needs to have a more stringent level of security added, or you risk falling victim to costly brute force or phishing attacks.
- Lagging Security and Risk Management Spending
While CIO.com's 2020 State of the CIO survey showed that 34% of CIOs saw security as a major area for spending their IT budgets in the future, there are still many gaps to be filled for mid-size businesses. A commitment to spend a certain amount on cybersecurity doesn't provide the near-term protection needed to secure your organization. While companies are investigating best-practices individually, hackers are rapidly gaining ground on foiling the most common forms of security protection.
The complications introduced by a full or partially remote workforce are often more than internal IT support teams can handle, leading companies to look for options for outsourcing their IT infrastructure and operations.