How to Get Started with Cybersecurity in The Workplace 2023
Raising information security awareness is an ongoing process that demands staying ahead of potential threats and regularly reviewing and updating your security measures. Yet, introducing cybersecurity in the workplace practices can be as simple as taking small steps. Here are some tips to get you started.
Related: Cybersecurity for Remote Workers: How to limit data leaks
Conduct a risk assessment
A risk assessment involves identifying and analyzing potential risks to the organization’s assets, such as data, systems, and networks. These risks can come in the form of external threats, such as hackers or malware, or internal threats, such as employees who may accidentally expose the organization to cyber attacks.
This will help you, on the one hand, to identify potential vulnerabilities in your systems and data, and on the other, to prioritize your efforts and allocate resources where they are most needed.
To conduct a risk assessment, start by identifying the organization’s assets and determining their value. Next, assess the likelihood of a cyber attack taking place and the potential impact it could have on the organization. Once you have this information, you can prioritize risks and develop a plan to address the most significant ones first.
There are various tools and methods available for conducting a risk assessment, including the use of risk assessment templates, software, and consulting services. As a side note, keep in mind to regularly review and update the risk assessment to ensure that the organization remains protected against new and emerging threats. Besides, as your organization evolves, new departments or ways of working will require a security check too.
Self host your communication apps
When delegating your data and privacy to global market leaders like Google, Facebook, Telegram or Slack, it means that any internal/external risk their system experience directly will impact your company. But when hosting a white-label communication app on your own servers or cloud, no leakage or platform shutdown can put your communications or business at risk. Everything (data and conversations) will belong to you. In terms of privacy, not relying on anyone else but you is the ultimate privacy level.
Choosing to self-host doesn’t mean automatic security. It DOES mean you’re separate from the provider of the software (you’re private from their problems and risks) but if the system you’re hosting has any kind of vulnerabilities, then hackers can still enter in. That’s why when choosing a communication system, look for secure and trusted systems to invest in.
Trusted private space provide, Zangi, gives businesses an E2E encrypted, dedicated team communication app independent from 3rd-party services, and separate even from their system. They also have white-label app options. Most importantly the architecture of the app is created with strong encryption as a base.
With Zangi, you can:
- Send end to end encrypted messages one-on-one or in groups
- Web Dashboard for full management of your business and team
- Add, remove users to your Network
- Send notifications, view statistics, activity & more.
- Integrate your existing CRM to Zangi via API codes
- Integrate your existing office phone system for secure roaming-free calls
- Use desktop and mobile messaging
- Add special security algorithms and keys into the source code
- Add your logo, branding, features to your app
- Apps can be incognito or we published on Google Play or the App Store.
What stands out is the app (app’s communication, data, and control) belongs to you and only you. If your solution provider IPs are closed or get blocked, that will not impact you.
Use a virtual private network (VPN)
VPNs encrypt internet traffic between the user’s device and the VPN server, protecting it against external threats by making it harder for hackers to intercept and steal sensitive data, such as login credentials or financial information.
A VPN also hides the user’s IP address, which can help protect against online tracking and identity theft. VPNs can also improve network security by creating a secure connection to the company’s network when employees are working remotely. In this way, VPNs can prevent unauthorized access to the network and protect against cyber threats such as malware and ransomware. One option to consider is Surfshark VPN, which has received positive reviews for its ease of use.
Implement password policies
Strong passwords should be part of your policy. Best practices include:
- Setting unique passwords for each account
- Avoiding the use of personal information in passwords
- Regularly updating passwords
- Requirements for password length, complexity, and frequency of changes
In addition to password policies, teach employees about the importance of strong passwords and the risks associated with weak or compromised passwords. This can help to ensure that all employees are aware of their role in protecting the organization’s assets and are taking the necessary precautions to secure their accounts. Additionally, One effective way to automate the process is using a password manager, which can generate and store strong, unique passwords for each employee and account—however, be aware that third-party companies’ security can also be compromised.
Enable two-factor authentication (2FA)
2FA adds a layer of security to online accounts by requiring users to provide a second form of authentication in addition to their password. In this way, 2FA helps to prevent unauthorized access to sensitive data and systems, even if a hacker can obtain an employee’s password.
There are several types of 2FA, including security tokens, biometric authentication, and one-time passcodes sent via SMS or email. To enable 2FA in the workplace, use a 2FA software solution or service that integrates with existing systems and processes to ensure that all employees use 2FA and that it is consistently applied across the organization.
Keep your systems up to date
Cybercriminals are constantly finding new ways to exploit vulnerabilities in software and systems, so stay up-to-date with the latest security patches and updates to prevent these attacks. One way to ensure that systems are kept up-to-date is to use an automated system update tool, which can automatically download and install updates as they become available, ensuring that all systems in the organization are kept up-to-date with the latest security patches and that any vulnerabilities are promptly addressed.
In addition to keeping systems updated, review and update their cybersecurity in the workplace policies and procedures. Make sure that the organization is prepared to respond to new and emerging threats and that all employees are aware of their role in protecting the organization’s assets.
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Employees are often the first line of defense against cyber attacks, and they must understand the risks and know how to protect themselves and the organization.
There are several ways that organizations can educate employees on cybersecurity in the workplace best practices, including providing training sessions, distributing informational materials, and conducting regular reminders and drills. Remember to tailor the education to the needs of the organization and its employees, as well as the types of threats the organization is most likely to encounter. To start, some key topics that organizations should cover in their cybersecurity education efforts include:
- Strong passwords and password management
- Phishing and other social engineering attacks
- Safe browsing and online behavior
- Mobile device security
- Protecting sensitive data
Related: 6 essential team communication tools for the modern workplace
Use a secure, private space for team communication
Email and other forms of online communication can be vulnerable to cyber attacks, such as phishing scams and malware that intercepts sensitive information. A secure communication application protects against these threats and ensures that employee conversations and data remain confidential. Several secure communication applications are available, including messaging apps, collaboration platforms, and virtual private networks (VPNs). These applications use encryption to secure communication and protect against unauthorized access.
In this last regard, consider using a free secure messaging app like Zangi for true cybersecurity in the workplace. Zangi is serverless and uses end-to-end encryption to ensure that your messages can only be read by the intended recipient, making it a secure choice for communication within your organization.
To ensure the security of employee communication, organizations should carefully evaluate the features and security protocols of different communication applications and choose one that meets their specific needs. Lastly, educate employees on the proper use of the secure communication application and any related security protocols.
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