Everything HR Needs to Know About Cybersecurity Today

Jan 12, 2022
Everything HR Needs to Know About Cybersecurity Today

Cybersecurity has until recently not been a top priority for HR professionals. However, things have changed, and that is no longer the case today. This is even more important now because of the challenges brought by the pandemic in early 2020. Collaboration between cybersecurity teams and other departments such as HR is now vital.

Many businesses moved their operations online when the pandemic struck. Some went ahead to adopt a work from home formula for their employees, which posed serious cybersecurity challenges. This led to an increase in virtually all forms of cyberattacks on different organizations.

HR professionals need to understand their role in organizational cyber safety. This includes knowing how employees can cause security challenges to a company and the possible solutions. In this article, we will explore every detail that HR professionals need to know about cybersecurity.

 

Let’s get started.

How the Remote Workplace Affects Cybersecurity

Remote working wasn’t as widespread as it is until the pandemic disrupted our daily lives. Today, millions of people worldwide are working from home. However, remote working has multiplied the number of cybersecurity threats that businesses have to deal with today.

The remote workplace exposes companies to phishing schemes, insecure Wi-Fi, unencrypted file sharing, computer malware, weak passwords, among other risks. The good news is that you can prevent most of these security challenges, such as phishing and weak passwords, by conducting regular cybersecurity training.

You should, for instance, train employees on the identification of phishing emails. Make it continuous training with newsletters and periodic phishing tests. Train employees to avoid password sharing and repetitive password usage, and also how to set strong passwords.

Unencrypted file-sharing can pose serious security threats. Cybercriminals can intercept unsecured data-on-transit, leading to theft, ransomware attacks, etc. Thankfully, there are several ways to secure data before you send it over a network.

One of the best ways to do this is using Blazing SEO residential proxies when working on business networks. Proxies are critical assets for companies that handle sensitive data. Using them helps increase data security and efficiency, especially when the data users are working from remote locations.

The Common Cybersecurity Challenges

Remote working has given cybercriminals more opportunities to exploit. Companies that allow employees to work from home are increasingly getting targeted by these criminals. HR professionals have had to develop strategies to help them overcome the security challenges of remote working.

But then, the first step to overcoming cybersecurity challenges is understanding them. Let’s look at some of these challenges below;


Expanded Attack Surface
Remote working means more devices accessing a network as everyone uses a personal device. It is not like in an office setup where a few devices can serve many people simultaneously. The challenge is that most personal devices may not be optimized for security, increasing security holes on the network.

Password Threats

Well, we have already mentioned how weak passwords can expose a business’s network. HR is responsible for ensuring that employees do their part in safe password use. Ensuring they avoid things like password reuse can help ensure cyber criminals do not crack your business systems.

Increased Uncertainty

There is a climate of fear that develops when you have a massive space to protect. The more devices used to access a network, the higher the doubt and urgency. HR is responsible for guiding employees on keeping safe as a successful attack won’t only affect the company network but also their household.

Employee Mistakes

Feeling tired or losing motivation when working from home can lead to employee mistakes. Research shows that 35% of employees experience this problem. The chances of such employees making costly errors are high. HR departments should set flexible schedules to allow remote workers to rest and reset.


Choosing Cybersecurity Solutions

As mentioned earlier, HR professionals have several ways to solve cybersecurity issues. This can be through following certain practices or infusing technology in their strategies. With a wide range of solutions available, it can be daunting for HR professionals to choose the best solutions.

The cloud is an excellent example of solutions that companies are using to boost cybersecurity. Data protection in the current online environment can be tricky if you do not adopt cloud-first security strategies for your company. HR should choose cloud vendors well to be sure of their cloud safety.

Another possible way to solve cybersecurity issues as an HR professional is using automation. Various technological changes are happening every day, and the use of automation technologies is one of them. Automation using AI-based systems can help you analyze massive security data.

This makes it easy for you to design your cybersecurity strategy to meet your current security needs. Besides, automation makes it easy to detect threats and reduces false alarm rates. Implementing these technologies as an HR department can help you realize security on a larger scale.

There are service providers who avail automation and cloud solutions to businesses. As mentioned earlier, the cloud vendor you choose matters, and the same applies to automation service providers. In the end, choosing cybersecurity solutions well can be of massive benefit to HR and the entire company.

 

How HR can Improve Cybersecurity in the Future

HR shouldn’t provide cybersecurity solutions that only focus on the present. There is a need to have future-proof solutions that a company can rely on in the future. The easiest way for HR to do this is to invest as many resources as they can on their employees to help prevent future attacks.

Besides, the HR departments need to keep the ever-changing threat landscape in mind. Cybersecurity solutions that work today may not work in the future. Cybercriminals are getting smarter with their attacking techniques, making continuous monitoring and updating security solutions essential.

Another way to ensure that cybersecurity solutions work into the future is by taking responsibility. Many companies delegate their security to professionals and other firms. The problem comes when they feel too comfortable and leave everything to third parties who don’t fully understand their threat landscape.

Taking cybersecurity as a responsibility and embedding it into your company culture can be beneficial. It is vital to follow up on any third parties you contract to handle your security. The HR and IT departments should also work hand-in-hand to ensure employees do not become a weak link in their security efforts.

For instance, HR should deactivate the accounts of employees immediately after they leave the company. It is common to hear of suspicious activity happening in inactive accounts. The problem is that HR and IT departments take too long to detect such activities if they do not cooperate.

Conclusion

Fostering a cybersecurity culture in an organization is everyone’s role today. Employers, i.e., the HR department, are mainly responsible for employee recruitment and training. Security awareness is one of the essential things they need to train employees on before onboarding them.

Besides, HR teams must understand how remote working affects cybersecurity. We already mentioned how remote working could expose business networks. This can be through employees accessing the networks from unsecured devices, networks, etc. when working remotely.

The HR department needs to identify these challenges and find solutions for them. For instance, they should teach employees remote working best practices, put policies in place, etc. HR also needs to find future-proof cybersecurity solutions that will ensure continued security for their companies.

 

Author Bio: This article is written by our marketing team at HR Cloud. HR Cloud is a leading provider of HR solutions, including recruiting, onboarding, employee engagement, and intranet software. Our aim is to help your company improve employee engagement, employee productivity, and to save you valuable time!