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How Smart Working Affects Cyber Security

Most Indian workers, in these days of emergency linked to Coronavirus, are rightly locked at home to work remotely. The first fundamental approach of the Indian workforce, which involved smart working, therefore occurred. An unknown until a few weeks ago, since as of 31 December 2019, only 2% of our fellow citizens used this type of work.

Is India Ready For Smart Working?

Naturally, in this historical phase of our planet, it is essential not to leave the house, so the somewhat artisanal and hasty smart working that we are all quickly adapting to is also welcome. However, the first question is: is India ready to encourage such a massive use of remote working? The answer is no. This is for several reasons.

First, only 24% of Indias have an ultra-broadband connection, a ruthless figure considering that the average of the European Union countries is 60%, which gets even worse if we think that over 20% of families do not Have internet access. Another problem, more than infrastructure and families, concerns businesses. Mainly because the companies are located in the same area where people live, the problem arises again in areas with no fast internet infrastructure.

Secondly, there are still few Indian companies driven by a digital mentality, as demonstrated by the very low data on pre-coronavirus smart working and the fact that only 8.8 million workers can carry out all their tasks from home or in the office. Finally, one of the problems somewhat overlooked in this phase but potentially very dangerous concerns the ability of Indian companies to allow their workers to connect from various networks (mostly domestic) and countless devices to company systems, guaranteeing high levels of IT protection.

Cyber ​​Security In The Times Of Smart Working

The highlighted aspect is the most urgent and complex to resolve in such a delicate moment. The problem arises from companies having had very little time to change their digital skin radically and found themselves unprepared after years of procrastinating. The result was that workers were put to work from home without having a precise idea of ​​what this entailed regarding actions to be carried out or even less so regarding company cyber security.

Remote access to company systems has been granted to unknown devices (employees’ personal PCs) that connect from external networks (the domestic wi-fi of their homes). This represents a threat because the devices installed within the company are monitored and protected with specific software and only connect to the company network. Instead, external PCs could be infected without knowing it and bring viruses, malware, and similar issues within the perimeter of the company’s wi-fi network. Without considering that cybercriminals can take advantage of these vulnerabilities to pass malicious files across the network.

VPN, Cloud And Firewall: The Ingredients Of The New Cyber ​​Security

So, how do we defend ourselves from this new (often unknown) risk modality? First of all, our company network must remain protected. Therefore, our company’s digital perimeter must be “fenced” by a powerful firewall. This Firewall must open dedicated ports to access employees who connect to company systems from outside. However, this must be done through a VPN (Virtual Private Network), which allows you to reach the system with a “private” connection and, therefore, more difficult for potential hackers to see.

Alongside this, it is necessary to equip every device supplied to competent working workers with reliable antivirus software. The use of the employee’s personal devices should be avoided, but at least they should be provided with a laptop “registered” by the company and known to the company network. Last, cloud applications from large providers should be preferred whenever possible. For example, if we have to hold video conferences with clients and colleagues, we choose Skype, Google Meet (or similar).

Similarly (it had to be done upstream but will be helpful in the future), it would be better to choose cloud business systems. We are referring to CRM software (Salesforce, Sugar, Azure, etc.), CMS (WordPress, Joomla, etc.) for managing websites, and warehouse management software (WMS), which today can also be in the cloud rather than locally as in the case of Eagle Management System.

This reduces the risk to the extent that the “software” is protected by the sophisticated systems of the large companies that supply them and the fact that the data is not saved locally within the company, so in the event of a “breach,” they would be taken away. No company can claim to be safe and must take all necessary measures to protect itself. Let’s work from home, but let’s do it safely, perhaps by relying on a reliable partner who performs the Security Operation Center (SOC) function. Alfacod has been offering this service for years; ask us how to defend your company.

Also Read: VPN Software Improves Remote Work For Companies And Workers