With so many small to medium-sized businesses moving from the office to a new working arrangement in the confines of their own home as we try to stop the spread of COVID-19, MYOB is urging SMEs to pay particular attention to cybersecurity.
Like many countries, the Australian government has strongly urged Aussies to work remotely if and when possible. But in order for this to be a successful and safe transition, cybersecurity needs to be a priority.
“In Australia we’ve never experienced a disruption to business on this scale. Not all businesses will have the knowledge or capability to implement a significant change to how they work quickly and safely,”says MYOB Head of Product, SME, Dale Dixon
There are a few measures that SMEs can take in order to ensure cyber safety in light of online remote working, including updating all software with the latest security upgrades and patches, installing and updating firewalls on home services and using technology to enable password protection, such as 2-Factor Authentication (2FA).
Dixon also places importance on considering “the key security and continuity risks involved in transitioning to a remote working operation,” that means also educating other potential home users like your children who may be susceptible to scams, malware and phishing attacks that could infect devices. Try also using a secure VPN (Virtual Private Network) when operating over Public WiFi.
MYOB’s key security recommendations for SMEs working from home:
- Update all software and operating systems with the latest security updates and patches
- Make sure firewall technologies are installed and configured appropriately on systems used at home
- Keep all endpoint protection services, such as anti-virus and anti-malware software enabled and updated
- Ensure routers and other telecommunications equipment don’t use default passwords and credentials.
- Use multi-factor authentication (2FA) for all remotely accessible services and systems where possible (2FA creates additional security by requiring a one-use code generated by an authorisation app)
- Update filtering for spam and malware on email systems
- Ensure backups are in place on all key systems and data
- Don’t store customer data without adequate security
- Keep staff informed of all incident response procedures as they apply to remote working
- Ensure that administrators or privileged users are aware and follow all security processes and procedures
- Provide adequate security awareness training regarding staying safe at home (https://security-awareness.sans.org/sites/default/files/2020-03/03-SSA-WorkingFromHome-FactSheet.pdf)