How do I work remotely in cybersecurity

Superspreader home office? Cyber ​​security when working remotely

10/22/2020 | useful information

SPD Labor Minister Hubertus Heil wants to secure a legal right to work from home for employees. Even if he gets caught in the crossfire of criticism, one fact remains: Remote work and home office are the most important measure in the context of corona prevention alongside the AHA rule. Even if this raises completely different risks, namely IT security risks.
A virus takes its course. The result: Home office and cyber crime are booming. After all, many people currently have to access their company's IT systems from home. This is exactly what hackers are increasingly exploiting.
Cyber ​​attacks were a rapidly growing problem for business and industry even before Corona. A problem that is now exacerbated by the use of private computers. The reason: employers often do not provide full home workplaces. "The company saves money - but with the risk that the employees work with a computer that is much less protected than the computer in the office," explains Steffen Zimmermann from the VDMA. The security expert Wolfgang Straßer also sees it that way, who doubts to the Handelsblatt that most private individuals have sufficient infrastructure and a professional firewall to detect and ward off cyber attacks. “In many cases, with which we are currently familiar, the employees' private computers were infected long beforehand.” Fatal, because on average a cyber attack costs the company concerned around € 51,000 (Hiscox).
The lockdown means a real trend reversal for mobile working. Before Corona, according to the Ifo Institute, 39 percent of employees were able to partially work in the home office, the current figure is 61 percent (as of August 2020). According to the Ifo experts, the potential for working from home is far from exhausted. Theoretically, 80 percent of companies could offer home office workplaces in the future. The Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) is also describing home office and remote work as an important part of the German economy in the future.
According to the BSI, IT security should therefore be taken into account in the further implementation and adapted to the work situation in the home office. This is the only way to guarantee protection goals such as confidentiality, availability and integrity. However, according to the current situation, spontaneous solutions for mobile working cannot fully or ad hoc implement all IT security requirements such as fast and stable network connections, setting up VPN solutions and purchasing suitable hardware. It is all the more important in the first step to at least create the basis. To this end, the BSI recommends a series of simple measures that lay the foundation for IT security in the home office:
  1. Clearly regulated:
    Make clear, unambiguous and binding regulations on IT security and the security of your data in paper form. Communicate this in writing to everyone involved.
  2. There's nothing to see here:
    Take measures at your home office that can achieve a level of security that is comparable to that of an office. Lock doors when you leave the workplace, do not give third parties a chance through visible or even open windows.
  3. Clear verification:
    Provide clear contact points and communication channels that can be verified by employees.
  4. Beware of phishing:
    There can be an increasing number of phishing e-mails that exploit the current situation and try to access your sensitive data (with reference to remote access, resetting of passwords, etc.).
  5. VPN:
    Ideally, you access the institution's internal resources via a secure communication channel (e.g. cryptographically secured virtual private networks, or VPN for short). If you do not yet have a secure and scalable VPN infrastructure, find out about possible solutions.

Safety tips: These and more in-depth measures of the BSI for download:
Cyber ​​prevention is the key to more IT security. Not at first, but also and especially in pandemic and hopefully at some point post-pandemic times. Brokers cannot stress that enough. And benefit, because focused education with a view to cybersecurity and data protection opens up new sales opportunities right now. This is where Markel Pro Cyber, together with the cyber security specialist Perseus, comes in with extensive assistance services for cyber prevention: With the free basic version, brokers can not only offer themselves and their customers all-round protection, from prevention to claims processing, Instead, get yourself fit through preventive training and thus better protect against cyber attacks. Supported by video training and technical aids. The premium version of the “cyber prevention package” can be used to book additional services from the fee-based offer.

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