We live in exciting times where new technologies have allowed for a diverse work styles between remote employees and in-house employees. Additionally bringing on a part time contractor from halfway across the world is very inexpensive and feasible now. The changing landscape in talent acquisition and work has certainly enabled companies to have more flexibility. With that flexibility has come new security risks though. As more companies and government agencies work with remote workers they increase their risk of an insider incident. Globalization and cyber security are driving new developments in how we work. Below we list our top five predictions in 2018 for work and cyber security.
Rapid Expansion of Remote Work
Revenue and savings are at the core of every business globally and remote work is certainly driving savings for companies. In the United States for each employee that is able to work remotely a company saves $11,000, while the employee saves about $2000 to $7000 per year. Environmentally there are even greenhouse gas reductions. Consider this a small company with about 50 employees can expect to save about half a million each year by establishing processes for telecommuting.
Half of the US workforce hold jobs that are able to be done remotely. Additionally, about 80% of the US workforce has expressed they would like to telecommute to work. As the years go on there is a steady rise in employers who are offering flexible work options, which now stands at 40%. As more data about the financial benefits of remote work are published the more startups and large organizations alike will develop structures that enable and encourage remote work.
Insider Focused Cyber Security Policies
If 2017 has taught us anything, it’s that people are still very much the weakest link when it comes to cyber security. As remote work adoption increases, so too will risk for cyber attacks. Companies will recognize more so that before that an employee with access to sensitive information in their network can sabotage the company if something goes wrong. In the case of negligent insiders, they may just leak their own credentials unknowingly providing a malicious cyber criminal access to your network.
Internal cyber security policy will likely be more rapidly adopted than before to accommodate the security needs of the company and exchange with remote employees. If employers are thinking with a security mindset, they can take these policies and apply them across their company. Expect more emphasis on user behavior analytics, permissions management, and video logs.
For many the idea of a completely remote job is a bit daunting, same for companies who worry about productivity. It is for this reason that companies and employees seem to have met a comfortable compromise of two to three days of remote work. With the sharp increase in remote work adoption will likely be blended between some days in office and other days at home.
Third Party Dependency
As work moves out of the office so to do the traditional tools and processes of management. Applications will likely be the interface between your company and your remote employees. With each application hosted and managed by an independent company you will likely have an extensive list of vendors to manage as your business continues to operates. The second more recent data breach by Equifax was the result of a third party analytics firm they were using to manage the page. Companies can avoid this by using open source platforms that are self hosted, but this presents its own problems as well.
Security Policy Integration
Public policy is usually one of the base drivers of change in business, especially in the cyber security space. When it comes to cyber security government has been the leader of innovation here. As a result when policy does come out it’s at times far ahead of what business is ready to handle. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is an example of a policy that is innovative and will likely shift the standard of cyber security in a dramatic way. For any businesses who wish to engage EU citizens or partners they must adhere to this EU policy. This makes the GDPR a global policy as a result. Many startups and companies will need to adopt new processes related to data management and cyber security to continue doing business with one of the world’s most successful economic regions.
Cyber security policy proposals will start to be global in application as business have employees from around the world whose data will cross borders with ease. What the GDPR has established is the focus that many other countries may adopt and that is the citizen.
These are some of the coming trends between cyber security and remote work that you can expect in 2018. What do you think will happen in 2018 for the labor markets? Do you expect cyber security to improve in tandem with remote work adoption?