Staying Secure in The New Hybrid Workplace

Staying Secure in The New Hybrid Workplace
Staying Secure in The New Hybrid Workplace

The Corona-infested times have revolutionized the way businesses used to run across the globe, and now remote working is the new normal. It has been two years since the onset of the pandemic, and ease in restrictions is accelerating the transition towards the new Hybrid workplace models.

According to statistics, 63% of high-revenue growth companies embracing the hybrid model stayed at the top of their game. In comparison, 69% of organizations that still preferred the on-site or fully remote environment experienced negative growth.

What Is The New Hybrid Workplace Model?

A hybrid workplace model is a mixture of in-office and remote work hence offering more flexibility and support for its employees. The model typically enjoys more autonomy and a balanced work-life environment as the staff is more engaged. The organization benefits by building a more productive, healthy, and stable workforce.

A hybrid model is implemented strategically via modern HR technologies that offer employee engagement and collaboration. It works with the flexibility of choosing between where and when they wish to work. The working days are dependent upon an as-needed basis. Practicing the hybrid model can also enable the organization to hire global talent and scale its operations to the international market. Additionally, organizations can cut down expenses and invest in new technologies and funnels.

We Can See The World Slowly Shifting Towards Hybrid Workspaces

Businesses, until recently, posed numerous restrictions on their employees while within the premises of their workplace. Work-from-home was not something usual. Employees had to be present in their offices to access their office networks. However, things are set to change now.

These days, employees have the leverage of accessing official networks from just about anywhere, opening doors for hybrid workspace solutions. Security concerns, however, have been the top priority in this matter. Therefore, VPNs and RMM solutions have enabled businesses to protect their employees’ personal information from malicious activities over the internet.

Companies are welcoming the new hybrid solution with open arms. Amidst this, NordLayer hybrid work security aims to protect their employees’ identities by adopting the Zero Trust Network Access solution. The ZTNA model is the only thing capable of maintaining network security in such an environment while also enabling productivity.

The Challenges

There’s no denying that the hybrid workplace solution was the answer to all our problems during the pandemic. It helped build a productive workforce while also ensuring our employee’s safety. Except now, as more and more people are getting vaccinated, hybrid workspaces have become a matter of convenience.

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We must also remember that convenience has always come with its challenges. One of the biggest challenges is the security factor, as these workspaces are subjected to many cybersecurity threats.

  • Weak network security

Remote work is made possible using VPNs and cloud services. With the weak security of the architecture, cloud-based cyberattacks have increased to 630% during the first quarter of 2020. Home Wi-Fi systems, personal laptops, and poor security practices have played a massive role in growing vulnerabilities.

  • Frequent fluctuations in network perimeter

Employees working from both offices and homes have increased the network perimeter. Hence, data protection has become a cumbersome task for IT specialists, given how the network boundaries have become too widespread.

How To Stay Secure?

Let’s explore some of the ways that can help fight these challenges to maintain security in a hybrid workplace:

  • Using Two-factor Authentication

2FA is a security protocol belonging to the second layer of authentication. The employees need to present this information before gaining access. The security measure provides an extra layer of cybersecurity for employees working from home as it ensures that they’re using a trusted process to log on safely.

  • Implementing Virtual Private Networks

For ensuring secure internal communication, many companies use VPNs to encrypt their internet traffic. If the employee uses VPNs to connect to their office network instead of the outside internet, it is much more difficult for hackers to attack confidential information.

The company can’t secure every other network that the employee uses to work while at home. Henceforth, VPNs provide the extra protection layer needed so they can perform their daily tasks irrespective of geographical locations.

  • Desk Reservation Platforms

Physical security is as important as cybersecurity. Therefore, many companies lease offices where they can’t physically accommodate all employees. Since they’re using the hybrid model, they know that they will never have to adjust all employees at once.

The Desk Reservation platform hence prevents overcrowding. Specialized reservation software is used where an employee can easily reserve a desk without any confusion and stress. The software also helps keep a record of who is coming or leaving the official premises hence protecting systems from security breaches.

  • Visitor Management System

Offices are bombarded with a steady stream of visitors from delivery guys to clients and vendors daily. Therefore, you need a way to maintain security without causing any inconvenience to the employee’s visitor. You can do this by using a visitor management system that helps keep a record of every person entering the office.

The employee can benefit from this since it will notify them whenever they have a guest waiting. The visitors can use it for navigational purposes, making it easier to reach their destinations.

  • Access control via smart-phones

Physical credentials like keys can be easily lost even by the most careful employees. Hence, using a smartphone-based access control system can save you from the hassle of deactivating and replacing the lost credential.

A digitized system makes it easier to assign, organize and manage everything. If you use the employee’s smartphone to store digital credentials, you can transform the entry process by removing the physical ones entirely.

Conclusion

The hybrid model is likely to last as companies are only beginning to unravel the potential for both the employer and the employee. By developing an efficient risk management plan, businesses can do everything to prevent errors. Hence, with a robust hybrid solution, enterprises will be able to mitigate risks and respond to threats well in time.

Mark Funk
Mark Funk is an experienced information security specialist who works with enterprises to mature and improve their enterprise security programs. Previously, he worked as a security news reporter.