Creating a work from home security checklist for your team.

Checklists are an invaluable method for getting through your task at hand. That’s probably why they work for so many kinds of projects: to-do checklist, training checklist, recurring process checklist and so on. Today’s post isn’t about any of them. However, if you’re looking for advice on how to create a work from home security checklist, today’s your lucky day.

We’ll be covering:

Let’s get into it.

What are the general principles of a remote work security checklist?

We should probably clarify what a remote work security checklist is. Or rather, what it includes. After all, half the clue is already in the word. No two will be the same, but as a general rule, they tend to be split into different sections, each of which includes various action items. Those sub-sections might well include the following:

  • Security: Perhaps the most obvious one. Any work from home security checklist needs to include substantial security-focused considerations.
  • Privacy: This is especially relevant when employees use their own device to access sensitive information about the company or your clients. It’s important to remind them not to copy/paste or print any of that information.
  • Phishing attacks: Almost 1.2% of all emails sent are malicious — that accounts for 3.4 billion emails per day! Reminders about email hygiene (not opening suspicious or unexpected emails); encouragement about reporting them
  • Backup: It’s important to have procedures in place when it comes to backing up critical or important data.
  • Mobile devices: According to Zipdo’s research, as much as 50% of companies in the U.S. allow employees to use their personal smartphones for work. So having mobile-specific measures in place feels like a no-brainer. Awareness training around the storage of company data is one example of how this might look in practice.

6 things to think about in your work from home security checklist.

There’s no finite list of things to include in a work from home security checklist. However, if you follow the six recommendations below, you should be more than okay.

  • Offer guidance on password setting

    Passwords can be easy pickings for malicious actors. For example, in 2023 (yes, really), Safety Detectives found that the most common password in the U.S. was ‘password’! For context, that would take hackers just one second to crack. If you’re putting together a checklist, offering guidance on password setting should be top of mind. Nudge your remote workers to choose strong passwords – and recognize what a weak one looks like. Complex, hard-to-breach passwords use a mix of letters with different casing, numbers and special characters.

    As mentioned earlier; setting up MFA provides additional protection. It’s vital that remote workers are encouraged to use multi-factor authentication each time they log in to their working environment. It’s also crucial that they don’t share work passwords with colleagues — whether over email or otherwise.

  • Maintain secure access control

    It goes without saying you want to secure your files. Making that a reality starts by ensuring only the right people can access what they need. To illustrate, if your sales director can (and does) make tweaks to compliance and legal documents, you’re in for a whole world of risk. In short: always assign access to files on a role-by-role basis. Also, be sure to revoke that access if the employee in question leaves or no longer needs access to it.

  • Use secure collaboration tools

    All too often, remote work is the unintended enemy of secure collaboration. Video conferencing, chat tools and even basic screenshots and copy/paste functionality can quickly expose confidential material. The good news? You can prevent that from happening by using secure collaboration tools.

    When you’re going through your checklist, be sure to triple check whether or not that whatever your organization has something in place for blocking internal data getting out…and external actors getting in.

  • Consider data backup and recovery

    Data loss can have catastrophic results for businesses everywhere. According to a study conducted by Avast, 60% of data backups are complete — and backup restores have a 50% failure rate! So here’s another checklist must-have. Consider the last time you implemented a data backup. If you’re not sure when that was, put it at the top of your agenda. While you’re at it, flag your company’s data restoration procedures and figure out a plan for them moving forward. Storing any backups offline in addition to the cloud is also worth keeping in mind.

  • Evaluate your employee training

    The more your workers know about remote security best practices, the better. Knowledge might be power, but it pays to deliver that knowledge in bitesize chunks. Keep things relevant to whoever is receiving the training. Avoid corporate or technical mumbo jumbo and ensure the information is easy to understand. Start with the basics on cyber security threats and how to handle them, and the company will be all the better for it.

  • Have a risk mitigation plan

    Remote security risks are never far away. Conducting a remote risk assessment can help your company think through and prepare solutions to mitigate them. That assessment might include problematic VPN configuration, BYOD policies, file sharing products or shadow IT systems. The idea is to pinpoint and combat vulnerabilities.

Explore a remote work security solution for your employees.

At Cubeless, we’d never discourage you from creating a work from home security checklist. That said, access to the right kind of secure workspace makes a lot of what we’ve mentioned a dang sight simpler — and some things (like data backup) barely relevant at all. Our secure app is chock-full of the stuff remote workers need to keep safe and compliant (think keylogger blocker, copy/paste and screenshot blocker, anti-virus engine etc). And because it separates workspace from hardware, users can access what they need without risking any kind of personal-professional contamination whatsoever. Sounds good doesn’t it? Learn more about how it works here and give your remote team a head start today.

Additional resources.


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