Immunise your business against winter WFH cyber security risks?

winter wfh cyber risks

As a COVID19 vaccine looms, isn’t it time to immunise your business against winter WFH cyber security risks?

As we face the possibility of a winter of lockdowns across the UK, many office-based workers are faced with WFH until at least spring and as work continues on finding a vaccine for COVID19. But what risks does your business face from cyber security threats?

From a business perspective you have to protect your own data but also that of your clients, but cyber security is more challenging with increased remote working.

The move to remote working was, for many businesses, a rapid one exercised overnight in March. This speedy turn around, with little infrastructure in place, was a great achievement for many and it worked through lockdown and beyond, But, this is not a long term strategy and business owners facing the continuation of WFH into 2021 need to transition into a far more secure model than relying on personal laptops and home wi-fi connections.

A survey undertaken in the US by Lenovo earlier this year showed that 70% of employees who took part had purchased new technology for themselves to help them work more efficiently from home. Nearly 40% of those surveyed had either partly, or fully, funded their new tech and any upgrades.

Domestic wi fi Connection

Home wi-fi poses a greater risk of being hacked, meaning that your business data and company information can more easily be compromised. As we face many more months of working from home, smart businesses ought to have employees working on a VPN. This provides a far more secure connection which is harder to hack into.

Personal Laptops

Work PCs offer far more protection than an employee’s personal kit. Often updates on personal laptops are outdated, adding to their cyber security risk.

Malware Protection

It’s likely that employees will have minimal malware installed on their personal machines – if any. This leaves the door wide open for hackers.


Personal devices are less likely to have all relevant updates installed – again increasing their security risk.

Changes in Behaviour

2020 has seen us all adopt different behaviours, and not all of them particularly good for cyber security. Zoom and Facetime chats are now more widespread as is online shopping. There’s also a wide range of ways in which businesses we visit collect our track and trace information with some highly dubious ‘open book’ methods. We’re also downloading and using more apps in hospitality settings for ordering.

It was understandable in the highly stressful early days of lockdown, that employers were focused on enabling any solution to get their businesses moving as their workforces were sent home to work.

Concerns about revenue and the future of the business meant that many business owners lacked funds to invest in robust, secure home working.

But with a clear seven months of a WFH workforce under their belts, business owners need to acknowledge the risk of continuing in an insecure manner. The University of Maryland has quantified the rate of hacker attacks to one every 39 seconds – with non secure usernames and passwords the hackers preferred route for success. A staggering 43% of cyber attacks are on small businesses and it’s considered that 90% of cyber security issues originate from human error.

Companies can take up to 6 months to detect a data breach. And, this doesn’t just apply to SMEs. Facebook, Equifax and Capital One have all been compromised in the past and have taken months to discover the breach.

Despite the news that a COVID19 vaccine may be close to production and distribution, it’s looking like at least in the medium term, many workers who can work at home will remain on their personal devices and domestic wi-fi connections.

Isn’t it time to immunise your business against the increasing cyber security risks?

Click here to contact Clark IT to discuss your remote set up.