Vacations are great. Employees like to get away from it all, the pressures of work, the many meetings, the deadlines, etc. But there’s another category of people who also love vacations and employees who are Out of Office (OOO) – cybercriminals.
Consider the reasons. Employees still might have to do a few work-related things, even on vacation, which can leave them open to data leakage. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) has become increasingly common in most enterprises, which represent a significant security risk and more so, during the holiday. Important work-related information may be stored in the phone and negligent employees may not always be following the correct mobile security procedures. They may download third-party applications from suspicious places which could capture this information and send it somewhere else. For example, during the holiday season, many malicious apps pop up purporting to be gift planners, vacation planner or something else and under that guise, capture sensitive data stored on a phone.
The dangers of Out of Office
Psychologically speaking, employees may have a tendency to be more relaxed when they are Out of Office. The pressures of work are far away and hence there is an inherent tendency that “anything goes”. This can manifest itself in employees throwing caution to the wind and using public WiFi for work-related communication, using similar office passwords for personal accounts, using unscanned USB devices on their office systems, etc. All this is extremely risky behavior and leaves both the employee and the enterprise at high risk of data leakage.
However, considering the times we live in, remote working is only becoming the norm. It’s not just on vacation, more and more employees will be working while they are traveling so it’s important that enterprises take the correct actions to prevent data leakage.
Employ a cybersecurity solution which includes Data Loss Prevention (DLP)
More and more Chief Information Security Officers are putting data loss prevention (DLP) as a top priority for them and for good reason, too. A strong DLP program provides businesses with comprehensive control over their data. By identifying, tracking, categorizing and preventing unauthorized disclosure, a strong DLP program can allow CISOs to get a one-glance overview of their entire organizational data security status, even if employees are on leave. Seqrite’s Endpoint Security (EPS) solution also offers Data Loss Prevention which secures confidential data and prevents the leakage of business secrets.
Encryption is a must
Whether its work being conducted on personal devices or personal stuff being conducted on work devices, sometimes, the lines blur and hence, it’s critical for enterprises to deploy a strong encryption policy, for work purposes. That way, even if the data does get leaked, it will be useless for a criminal without the encryption key. Seqrite Encryption Manager protects corporate data residing in endpoints with strong encryption algorithms and also has Removable Media Encryption which encrypts entire data on removable devices.
Seqrite mSuite allows network managers to get total control over the apps being installed on official devices, monitor the internet usage patterns, track the device location, apply policies as per location and time and provide support through remote device control as well as file transfer. This allows the organization to remain in total control of
what’s happening with its data even beyond their own network.
Ultimately, an enterprise can only take so many measures, it is the employees themselves who need to be made cognizant of the risks of data leakage during the times when they are on leave. An email from the information security team just before the holidays is a good idea – this email can contain information about how to keep their data safe. More specifically, it can include pointers on:
- Password security – if possible, employees should change their passwords before going on a vacation and use strong & separate passwords for work and home devices
- Not allow unauthorized use of work devices – Malicious software may be inadvertently downloaded on devices
- Keep your belongings safe – In a time of excitement and celebration, it can be easy to physically forget your devices, which can lead to them falling in the hands of petty criminals
- Not use public WiFis – A strict no-no and should be reiterated during the holiday season when employees may decide to use public WiFis in airports and railway stations.
As an IT security partner for your business, Seqrite provides comprehensive security from advanced cyber threats. To know more