The COVID-19 pandemic has caused tremendous changes throughout professional workspaces. As the world continues to adapt to a new standard of normalcy, COVID-19 continues to affect how companies do business. In the wake of public reopenings, most industries are continuing to expand remote work capabilities or create hybrid models moving forward. Industries such as Healthcare have been forced to rapidly evolve their model to accommodate the well being of their employees as well as their patients.
The flexibility of work/life balance is becoming increasingly more important for professionals. In fact, a recent survey performed by IBM found over 75% of the respondents said they would like to work remotely at least occasionally. As the world shifts into a post-pandemic realm, leaders should remain focused on increasing remote work infrastructures.
Organizations that remain committed to remote work will find themselves attracting and retaining talented individuals. Companies must cater to work/life needs or run the risk of losing their most valuable employees to other organizations.
How the Pandemic has Changed Financial Priorities
The long-term financial ramifications of the pandemic may extend well beyond the duration of the virus itself. As a result, leaders have been forced to rethink current budgetary policies and guidelines.
Although some budgets may be getting tighter, a recent survey performed by IDG found that 65% of businesses actually plan to increase or maintain current IT expenditures. As organizations become more focused on operational efficiency in remote work environments, leaders are continuing to optimize digital infrastructures for employees.
Companies surveyed continue to prioritize digital transformation throughout the pandemic and beyond. According to IDG, post-pandemic, leaders plan to shift some of their priorities to now include improving operational efficiencies, optimizing business processes, improving remote work experiences, customer experience, and increasing cybersecurity posture.
Improving Remote Work Environments
The recent pandemic has created a more positive outlook on remote work capabilities. Current IDG research accurately reflects this viewpoint as digital transformation and remote work experiences are currently listed as the top priorities for business leaders.
Organizations are aware that remote workforces can be just as effective as traditional office spaces from a productivity standpoint. Companies are also supporting remote work due to potential cost savings from reduced office square footage and Healthcare providers have been forced to dramatically increase telehealth models to ensure patient safety.
The shift towards remote work has been overwhelmingly positive for most organizations however, a recent IDG survey found that 44% of organizations will need to acquire new technology and services to accommodate the shift in the work dynamic. As companies continue to expand digital infrastructure capabilities the transition will also bring about a number of new challenges.
Cybersecurity in the Post-Pandemic World
Although remote work environments may help improve employee productivity, boost morale, and provide cost savings, at-home work environments can increase endpoint vulnerability. Employees may be unfamiliar with home wi-fi security protocols which may further increase their cybersecurity risk.
Cybercriminals pose an increased threat to remote workspaces as many employees lack the security commonly found in large corporate environments. Furthermore, the threat of malicious malware and ransomware has grown throughout the pandemic as cybercriminals have attempted to victimize employees at increasing rates.
Remote work has become the new standard of normal for many companies. As leaders attempt to establish new workplace policies and procedures, IT leaders in all industries must continue to assess and prepare for potential cybersecurity risks moving forward.
Increased Cybersecurity Risk for the Healthcare Industry
Over the past three months, healthcare organizations rushed to move their non-essential workforce to a remote work environment to help mitigate the risks of COVID-19. In parallel, healthcare providers dramatically increased the availability of telehealth services to ensure patient well being.
Cybercriminals have seized on this opportunity to target healthcare workers using ransomware to steal medical data and resell it on the black market. Attackers understand these employees were rushed into a model that may be open to vulnerabilities. Employees and healthcare providers may not have installed security updates for their VPN, may be logged in from an unsecured Wifi, or using a platform with known security issues, making them an easy and profitable target.
In June of 2020 there was an attack identified that targeted more than 100k inboxes. This attack targeted healthcare organizations along with other industries that used legacy technology that enables voicemails to be sent directly to email inboxes. Once the emails were accessed, the cybercriminals directed employees to a website in order to steal their credentials.
Just like other businesses, healthcare organizations need to ensure they have the infrastructure as well as end-user policies in place to mitigate cybersecurity risks.
How TBConsulting is Helping Companies Prepare for the Future
The modern workforce landscape has changed dramatically due to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. As leaders continue to grapple with ongoing changes, decision-makers must take additional steps to address and mitigate potential security risks. Having the right technological solutions in place can allow your organization to flourish and scale even within remote workspaces.
As one of the top managed service providers in Arizona we have the tools and resources your company needs to grow and thrive. We’re continuing to help companies prepare for the future by utilizing unified communications as a service as a means of maintaining business connectivity from any location.
TBConsulting remains committed to assisting organizations with achieving mission-critical needs while protecting invaluable security infrastructures. TBC is continuing to safeguard company assets, helping to free up IT resources so your team can keep up with the pace of innovation and competition in the digital economy.
Our cybersecurity approach is designed to help align with your business goals while proactively and comprehensively monitoring and managing security environments to help reduce cybersecurity risks. TBC helps companies create customized solutions to help organizations transform and grow.
If you would like to learn more about how TBC can help improve cybersecurity needs, please be sure to request a 30 minute consultation. Our knowledgeable experts are standing by to provide you with solutions needed to succeed.