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Flexibility’s the future, but how can businesses get on board securely?

We’ve all seen the benefits of hybrid working, and few doubt the productivity and engagement benefits of empowering people to work as they choose, where they choose. But some business leaders are still struggling with the security implications of a flexible world.

In fact, our research shows 75% of IT decision makers say the sensitivity of their organisation’s data has made them more cautious about embracing anywhere work long-term. And 60% say security risks have increased since employees started working remotely.

But, the reality is, flexible working is the future. So, what can your business do to overcome these worries and mitigate security risk? Our answer: by adopting a Zero Trust philosophy.

What’s Zero Trust?

In short, Zero Trust means that every transaction between user, application, service and network must be verified; every transaction must prove it’s trustworthy.

And how does this positively impact flexible working? Well, it means whether an employee is sat within a secure building or on a beach in Barbados, their transactions will always need be validated, so it really makes no difference where they’re based.

With a Zero Trust-based security system, hybrid working isn’t only made possible; it’s made secure.

Get ready to implement Zero Trust

But, and this is key, the adoption of Zero Trust security should be considered evolutionary. After all, it requires four elements to work.

  1. Culture

Creating a secure culture starts with training and making sure all individuals within your business have a solid understanding of good security practice. Although remote security relies on tech, it also relies on people to use the tech properly. So, the first step to Zero Trust is to give your team the know-how to protect your organisation.

  1. Automated management

The sign of successful Zero Trust deployment is that no one will even notice it’s working. It churns away in the background, keeping everyone’s transactions safe and secure – without any fuss. To make this happen, the right policies need to be in place and, as long as they are, users won’t even notice Zero Trust’s there.

  1. Future-proofed connectivity

5G adoption is speeding everything up, and networks are carrying enormous amounts of data with more and more transactions needing validation. So, to make sure employees can work from literally anywhere, you need to ensure their network can be authenticated and protected by future proofing connectivity.

  1. Mindset change

Finally, Zero Trust won’t work without a mindset change. With customers, investors and regulators becoming increasingly concerned about organisations with lax security, your business needs to adopt a ‘protect at all costs’ mindset and have the right response plans in place when a breach inevitably happens.

 

Hybrid working is here to stay 

A move towards hybrid working means boundaries are blurring. For businesses to keep the best talent, create rewarding career opportunities and, ultimately, achieve success now and in the future, they need to be adaptable.

That’s not to say security should be overlooked at all, but organisations need to find a way to balance the need for protecting data with enabling colleagues to work in a way that boosts productivity, motivation and loyalty.

The good news? The Zero Trust security model is ready and waiting to offer that crucial protection in a flexible working world. Will your business get on board? Learn more about implementing Zero Trust security here.

What changes has your business made to make remote working secure? Join the conversation on Twitter.

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