Employers not in favour of remote working
S Mohini Ratna
A report reveals, 59 per cent employers are not in favour of remote working in the new normal and 7 in 10 say they will not continue it once a solution to the pandemic is in place, even as 3 out of 4 employers highlight no decline in employee productivity due to remote working.
Remote work has served as an equalizer, pushing companies to reimagine and reorganize their work models, encouraging workers to adapt to new concepts of flexibility and productivity. However, in an emerging market like India where culture outweighs convenience and problem solving is far more effective when people come together, it will be interesting to watch how this plays out as we progress towards our recovery.
The report says, 60 per cent of female employees, more than double their male counterparts (29 per cent), say they are willing to relocate to their hometowns owing to the lack of a family support system in a current environment marked by quarantined living conditions or employers aiming to reduce the cost of employees by increasing working hours.
The remote employees work 1.4 more days per month than their office-based counterparts, resulting in more than three additional weeks of work per year and 29% of remote employees said they struggle with work-life balance, and 31% said they have needed to take a day off for their mental health. It is also found that working from home can be more stressful than working at the office. Approximately 29% of telecommuting respondents said they had a hard time maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
More than half of employers (55 per cent) said there are talent shortages in upcoming metros. This will bring an opportunity for educational institutes, essential services, and delivery partners to scale up and it indicates that reverse migration could be a temporary phenomenon.
On this backdrop, several organisations have had come across countless challenges during the pandemic, but one that has continued to cause headaches is IT security for home workers. Employees are relying on their home networks – and sometimes their own devices – and without the assurance of a member of your IT team on hand if anything goes wrong. As more people are working from home rather than at the office, cyber criminals are taking advantage of any weaknesses that may become apparent in the home worker’s IT defenses. Working from home is becoming a gateway to new forms of data theft.
As the economy is increasingly getting digital, the growing cyber threat is outpacing most companies’ ability to manage it effectively. Poor technological infrastructure and inadequate cyber and data security are hampering the productivity of the employees working from home – and represent a cyber risk to businesses and are becoming more vulnerable to cyber-attacks. As most of the tasks are conducted online, there’s always the possibility of a cybercriminal compromising it.
At the same time, enterprises are turning to digitisation to stay ahead of their competitors. Yet this often-major shift can see firms implementing new technologies without first ensuring proper safeguards in place. We can’t deny the fact that many connected devices adopted within enterprises are not designed with security in mind that brings a huge loophole to the system.
Every organisation has its own architecture and its own foundation of work culture, when you try to connect everything with IOT, the problem starts. Cyber criminals are adapting their tactics and are now targeting people in their homes, which in many cases is now their office too. An expert says, organisations of all shapes and sizes are thinking hybrid. The hybrid model has manifested itself in different ways. Some companies are restricting workforce presence to a certain per cent, and others are opting for a rotational system. No matter what policy your company is experimenting with, the fact remains that employees will find themselves going back to the office at some point.
It is also fact that many employees ignore the risks of working from home. When you connect through a secure VPN, the network recognizes your computer as a trusted device. So if your laptop is compromised, you could then compromise other computers or servers on the central network.
We can’t ignore the growing concern on the Ransomware attacks, it is a malware (MALicioussoftWARE) that locks all of the data on your network with encryption. The perpetrators then demand a ransom to unlock your data. Surprise! Sometimes after paying the price the criminal does not restore the data. We are going to witness on every 11 seconds a business will fall victim to a ransomware attack. This makes ransomware the fastest growing type of cybercrime.
Earlier, hackers had to expose themselves financially to gain access to a ransom payment, now with crypto currency the payments to the hacker are completely untraceable, which is leading to a recurrence of ransomware.
There is no data available so far on how much amount is invested globally, must be in Trillions of dollars by the Government, enterprises, SME and individuals on the Technology driven products and solutions. A report says, the year 2021 will witness a $7 Trillion for securing against cybercrime.
Finally, remote workers should be aware that network security is a shared responsibility. It is not enough to depend on IT professionals to strengthen computer defenses. Employees should know and follow best practices for IT security to prevent attacks and protect the company’s IT resources.
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