Unsafe at Home: The Heightened Cyber Risk of At-Home Workers

Two years ago, employees across the country and around the world collaborated with their employers to establish ways they could perform their job duties while working from home.  Today, the urgent need for home-based workers has receded, but the popularity of this option remains high.

And while certain trends point to an actual increase in productivity, job satisfaction, and a better work-life balance from working at home, the choice does also come with a few risks, some quite disturbing and potentially very costly.

The Cost of a Data Breach Report, conducted by the Ponemon Institute and IBM Security, reports that 76% of respondents whose organizations have shifted to remote work expect that working from home could increase the time required to identify and contain a data breach.  What’s more, 70% of respondents expect remote working to increase the cost of a data breach.

Those results should cause business leaders to pause, at least for a moment, to think about what remote work represents regarding risks to your organization’s cybersecurity status.  With the geopolitical upheaval emanating from Eastern Europe currently, the world is getting a first-hand lesson in the power of benign cyber systems to damage economies, influence migration of populations, even wage war.  Just imagine the wreckage a malignant cyber attack could create.

Are your remote employees following strict cybersecurity protocols regarding password control?  Tracking and protecting the physical location of their laptops and smartphones?  Accessing only approved downloads and avoiding personal usage or inappropriate personal apps on company equipment?

Keep in mind that three out of four business leaders have concerns about cybersecurity regarding remote work.  Being concerned is one thing.  Acting on those concerns by clearly stating acceptable and unacceptable cyber behavior, and enforcing those standards, is what can make a real difference.

Contact the professionals at The Reschini Group for more information.

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The Reschini Group provides these updates for information only, and does not provide legal advice.  To make decisions regarding insurance matters, please consult directly with a licensed insurance professional or firm.