The hybrid working imbalance: twin challenges of connectivity and security

Staying connected and remaining secure may seem like second nature in the office, but you could be left second guessing when it comes to your employees working remotely.

As a new era of hybrid working develops for many of us, it makes this contrast even clearer. And even though the pandemic’s move to remote working saw businesses and employees overcome many major obstacles, issues of connectivity and security remain key areas on which to focus.

Staying connected
When working from home, connectivity – or lack of it – can have a significant impact on our daily working lives. Chances are, you’ve found yourself “freezing” on video calls or endlessly trying to access large files at some point due to problems staying connected.

However, there are a few simple things that you and your employees can do to strengthen your chances of avoiding such situations when working from home:

  • Boosting signals: Adding boosters and extenders can improve WiFi strength by picking up the signal from a router and increasing coverage around the home. Supplying employees with this kit could give their WiFi – and their productivity – a boost that makes it a worthwhile investment. 
  • Helping with hotspots: A smartphone with a hotspot feature will turn the device’s cellular connection into a miniature WiFi network. This could be an important lifeline for an employee who is struggling to connect. You’ll also need to ensure that their phone is on an appropriate tariff that considers the data that a hotspot connection will use.
  • Offering IT support: Make sure employees know how to troubleshoot connectivity issues – and that an IT team is available to assist remotely if that doesn’t solve the problem.
  • Ensuring everyone is up to date: Be sure that the software on employee devices is the latest version. Failing to keep it up to date could lead to a variety of issue – including expose to security threats.

Staying secure
While connectivity can cause concerns, cyber threats if undetected can result in significant damage to your business. According to the UK government, among the 39 per cent of businesses that identified breaches or attacks in the previous 12 months, one in five end up losing money, data or other assets.

Again, there are several steps you can take – and they can go a long way towards keeping your business protected:

  • Data security policy: Introduce a policy document that clearly states how employees must keep company data secure – and what will happen if they don’t. 
  • Tools, technology and training: Ensure employees have all the tools they need to get the job done while staying secure. Increase knowledge further with cybersecurity training so that everyone is aware of the risks – and how to prevent them becoming reality. 
  • Updates to your security: From spam filters to firewalls, security tools need to be kept up to date. Out-of-date software may not be able to withstand a sophisticated cyber-attack. 
  • Restrict personal device use: Using personal devices for work purposes may be beneficial in a hybrid working environment. However, you need to know what devices are accessing your company’s systems and data – and where. To lean on the side of caution, it may be better to restrict personal device use to the office where appropriate protection measures can be put in place. 
  • Secure connections and strong passwords: Be clear that employees must use secure networks, which includes using your company’s VPN, when working remotely. And, although the advice may seem as old as the internet itself, it’s important that your employees use strong and varied passwords to help avoid security risks.

While we’ve covered some of the basics about staying connected and secure in a hybrid working environment, there’s plenty more we can help with. 

To find out more, contact your dedicated Adam Phones Account Manager, or call us on Freephone 0800 123 000. 

Posted on: 7th December 2021

Posted in: Blog

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