Managing cybersecurity has always been essential and sometimes confusing. Still, when you introduce the fact that much of the workplace is now functioning remotely, it becomes a little more mysterious and can be very frustrating. You may have the infrastructure in place at the office, but what about your employees working from home who face WiFi challenges, which reduces the effectiveness of any antivirus software they may be using?

Many employees have roles where they perform the same tasks repetitively, making it easy for them to make mistakes that could make your company vulnerable to threats, whether working in the office or home. This topic is even more relevant now, so we want to share a few tips to ensure everyone is doing their best to be safe no matter where they are working.

Identifying Threats is a Team Effort

Depending on the size of your business, you may or may not have a dedicated IT person. If you have one, that’s great as he/she can spontaneously tackle issues, but it’s vital to set up consistent guidelines to communicate with everyone in your company

There will be employees who don’t get it as they may have the “it’s not my job” mentality, but most of the data breaches happen due to negligence or not paying attention to anything other than their current task.

If you’re transparent about your expectations by outlining them in the company employee manual, and, including in the review process, they will take it much more seriously.

Outline Your Expectations

Jot down all the important information you need for your interview. The last thing you want is to find yourself in a situation where you forget key achievements, program names, or worse—the hiring manager’s name. A personal interview cheat sheet is a wonderful tool for helping you keep all pertinent information in one concise place. Make sure to add at least three questions for the person interviewing you! Having your “ducks in a row” on paper will help you feel more confident, more prepared, and less nervous.

Demonstrate the seriousness of cybersecurity by including clear rules in your employee manual, so there is no question of their role in preventing or reporting issues or threats. And, make it a part of their review so that cybersecurity is taken seriously.

Properly Train Each Employee

In addition to outlining your data security policies, give employees the knowledge to identify potential threats and what steps to take daily to prevent breaches.

Your plan may be in writing, but for many, being shown first-hand what all of it means is invaluable.

This training can be done in-person or virtually based on the circumstances. To follow are some of the best practices recommended to give your staff the resources and knowledge they need:

  • Outline the common threats and how to avoid them, including ensuring the right software is installed and, if needed, the routine tasks they need to make sure all is working correctly.
  • Set up clear password policies and utilize one of the reputable password keeper tools to add another security level. These tools will also let people know their passwords’ strength before using it. Another good strategy is to require them to change their passwords at a minimum, each quarter. A good password keeper will help you manage this process so that you never forget a password again.
  • Email is one of the most common areas where we are all vulnerable. Many email programs are excellent at automatically detecting dangerous emails and moving them directly into a dedicated SPAM folder. Some do slip by, so ALWAYS know who the sender is and if you don’t recognize that person or company, be very wary of opening a random email. NEVER download or click on a link from someone unfamiliar as you could accidentally install a deadly virus to your device. Unsure? Set up clear protocols for opening emails throughout your company.
  • Threats are inevitable. Talk to an IT professional to learn how to identify these threats. Be proactive and make sure your network is monitored to prevent these threats from disrupting your business.

Continue to “test” your staff to ensure they’ve absorbed everything. And of course, continue to update your manual as technology evolves.

If you do not have an IT person, you may want to outsource temporarily to a professional who can help you set up a training plan and policy. It’s worth the investment as long as long as your employees are held accountable.

Managing the cybersecurity for your company doesn’t have to be a scary task. If you seek professional advice, outline the process, train your employees, and continuously follow-up with employees, you’ll have more peace of mind and the best opportunity for a secure environment.