The hybrid work environment is here to stay. In fact, a Stanford study suggests that 20 percent of full workdays will be from home after the pandemic, compared to the five percent before. Many businesses are in the process of reimagining the workplace, and while there are certainly concerns, they must adapt soon or else risk employees going elsewhere. Sounds a bit dramatic? It’s actually pretty close on the money. According to global staffing firm Robert Half, 1 in 3 employees currently working from home would begin looking for a new position if they were required to go back to the office full-time, especially working parents. Most staff prefer operating remotely or both at home and in the office: 26% prefer to be fully remote while 49% want a hybrid workplace.
Many teams will be happy to hear that around 70% of organizations surveyed plan to implement hybrid working in some form. Unfortunately, this might be the extent of the good news.
Just like the beginning of the pandemic, cybersecurity procedures and the infinite amount of human error that so often creates issues will take center stage as organizations transition to hybrid.
Regrettably, employee behavior deteriorated while working remotely. Tessian research found that 56 percent of employers believe their staff picked up bad security habits at home, and rightfully so. Thirty-nine percent of employees admitted their behaviors differed significantly while remote compared to in the office. Even worse, 36 percent admitted they found workarounds since they started working from home (the majority being workers between 16 and 24). Pretty bad, right? Just wait. Nearly half of the employees surveyed resorted to risky behavior simply because they felt they weren’t under the watchful eye of their IT department.
To say that there’s a problem here would be an understatement. Businesses need to accommodate their staff’s wishes but also need to be wary of the cyber risks that come with it.
One of the areas that has caused strife is team members using their own mobile phones, tablets, and computers for work purposes. While this can certainly save organizations money that would otherwise be spent providing these devices, personal items could be infected due to a lack of cybersecurity measures and awareness.
This means that businesses need to take on a new security architecture that covers all bases; from zero-trust network access and endpoint security, to password managers and multi-factor authentication. No stone can be left unturned; however, it’s important to make sure that most of the responsibility doesn’t fall on the employees themselves as this will cause friction and a lack of care.
Phishing & Ransomware
Ransomware has been in the news on (what seems like) a daily basis. One major corporation after another falls victim to supposedly ‘sophisticated attacks.’ The truth of the matter is, many cybercriminals use simple phishing techniques to trick employees into clicking on a ransomware-bound link or sending funds to an incorrect account. Now that staff can work from anywhere, employers and IT leaders are rightfully concerned that team members will take a back seat and lower their guard. While many resort to scare tactics, history shows this simply doesn’t work. Rather, organizations need to build a strong security culture and implement training that’s gamified, making it exciting and interesting to learn.
Outsourcing Can Be a Lifesaver
Maintaining a cyber secure workplace is a difficult task, especially in 2021. With innumerable attacks on the horizon, unknowing staff, and holes yet to be found, even the largest IT teams will face a challenge or two. As for small to medium-sized businesses, the struggles can be even more pronounced. Whether you already have IT staff or are just getting started securing your space, outsourcing can be a lifesaver.
Your team has enough to worry about keeping operations running and customers happy. Let the experts deal with the troublesome task of transitioning to a hybrid workforce.
Give us a call and learn more about what the Netzbahn team can do for you: 920-297-5000