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As organizations continue to adopt hybrid and remote work schedules, the threat of cybersecurity attacks increases. Attackers are constantly finding new ways to penetrate an organization’s network to access personal and confidential information. Cyberattacks can have a detrimental effect on an organization’s financial health and daily operation. However, as the risk of cyberattacks increases, risk management strategies can be implemented to help companies mitigate cyber-attacks and respond to threats and attacks efficiently. 

Identifying Cybersecurity Risks

Protecting an organization from cyber-attacks becomes increasingly difficult as employees continue to work from home. In order to prevent these attacks, organizations must be able to first understand and identify where the risks are coming from. Here are a few of the most common ways attackers infiltrate an organization’s environment:

  • Through personal devices. Employees who work remotely are most likely using their own personal devices to connect to their organization’s network. Remote workers will often use their home router, personal mobile phones and laptops to do their work from home. However, since most people don’t secure their devices, a company’s information can become compromised. Companies should supply a VPN to remote employees which helps protect their network even as employees connect remotely.
  • Unsecure connections. Public Wi-Fi connections are a central hub for cyber attackers. Using public Wi-Fi in coffee shops, libraries, or even shared working spaces allows attackers to gain access to your company’s private information.
  • Poor cybersecurity habits. Organizations put themselves at risk if they do not monitor employee habits. Using weak passwords, storing passwords in unsecured locations, or clicking on malicious links sent to work emails can significantly impact an organization’s health.

Strategies to Mitigate Risk

To decrease the risk of cybersecurity threats, an organization can implement strategies that help strengthen their network and reduce the likelihood of attackers infiltrating their systems.

Conduct employee trainings

Employees who are aware of cybersecurity risks and understand how to avoid potential threats are an asset to an organization. Companies should consider implementing a comprehensive security awareness program for employees. Proper training will allow employees to recognize and report cyber threats such as suspicious emails, links, and viruses.

Implement firewalls

Organizations should consider installing firewalls and antivirus software on all computers and devices that are connecting to its network. Firewalls act as a buffer between the outside worlds and your network, enabling your organization to control who goes in and out of the network. In addition, antivirus software continually searches devices to identify any malicious activity. 

Build a response plan.

Cybersecurity attacks happen and when they do, it’s important to have a response plan in place. IT security teams and employees should know what their roles are in the event of an attack. Organizations should periodically review this plan of action to ensure employees understand what to do and who to report to during the event. 

Cybersecurity attacks occur every single day. Organizations who prepare themselves before an attack are more likely to be able to overcome a possible breach. Building a response plan, implementing security channels and training employees can help mitigate cybersecurity risks and keep your company secure.

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