The world won’t emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic the same as it was before. As new threats arise and old methods change, security professionals face a changing landscape. Cybersecurity after COVID-19 will have to adapt to this new normal.
Cybersecurity professionals must start the transition now to prepare for the future. Here are seven steps that will be crucial in the post-COVID security world.
1. Adopt a Zero-Trust Model
After the pandemic, about 16% of employees will keep working remotely at least two days a week. This shift to a work-from-home model comes with an influx of new devices and endpoints to secure. In light of these rising vulnerabilities, a zero-trust approach to cybersecurity is crucial.
With a scattered workforce and various networks, companies can’t be overly careful. There are too many potential risks. Restricting access and verifying everything can help companies stay secure.
2. Prioritize Cloud-Based Security
With more employees working from home, companies will likely embrace cloud services to enable remote collaboration. As a result, cybersecurity after COVID-19 must focus on cloud-based security. As the workplace transforms, security measures should evolve with it.
Older, hardware-based approaches to cybersecurity won’t be sufficient for a mostly cloud-rooted workplace. Cybersecurity professionals need to adopt or design cloud-native security systems to protect the newly remote workforce.
3. Remote Endpoint Isolation
Securing the perimeter is more of a challenge when so many employees work from home. With additional entry points for cybercriminals, businesses need a way to isolate potentially compromised devices. Cloud networks after COVID should include remote endpoint isolation features.
Cybercriminals are aware of the shift to remote work and are taking advantage of it. In response, cybersecurity professionals must be able to cut off vulnerable endpoints.
4. Secure Remote Authentication
Secure device and network authentication are more crucial than ever. Remote employees need to access company files and systems, but businesses need to put restrictions in place. A simple username and password combo won’t be sufficient for cybersecurity after COVID-19.
Multifactor authentication is exponentially harder to hack through, making it ideal for this purpose. Businesses may also consider incorporating biometrics into the process. No matter the specifics, verification techniques must improve.
5. Frequent Stress Testing
The pandemic has provided businesses with a reality they don’t often encounter — a worst-case scenario. The skyrocketing success rates of cyberattacks indicate that many organizations were ill-prepared for these new challenges. Businesses should conduct more stress tests to prevent similar situations in the future.
Now more than ever, companies need to reevaluate the efficacy of their cybersecurity regularly. Frequent stress testing will help businesses defend against any future disasters.
6. Renewed Focus on Disaster Recovery
2020 has also highlighted how no company is immune to data breaches. While prevention is better than cure, it’s unrealistic to believe a business will never experience a breach. Disaster recovery will be a critical part of the post-COVID security landscape.
The COVID cybercrime wave has demonstrated how fast threats grow and evolve. No security system is invincible, so recovery is a crucial consideration for any business. Companies that can recover quickly and effectively will see more success after the pandemic.
7. Emphasize a Company Culture of Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity after COVID-19 will have to be a more collaborative effort. Social engineering attacks have surged during the pandemic, stressing the need for comprehensive cybersecurity education. Attackers are increasingly focusing on human vulnerabilities, so companies need to create a culture of cybersecurity.
With rising user-focused attacks and a growing remote workforce, companywide cybersecurity training is no longer optional. Businesses must ensure the security of their greatest vulnerabilities — their workers. Now that every company is becoming a tech business, every employee is an IT worker to some extent.
Cybersecurity Is an Evolving Landscape
The world of cybersecurity has never been a static one. The extremities of the pandemic have accelerated change to an unusual degree, though. In light of these rapidly changing challenges, cybersecurity must likewise shift quickly.
Cybersecurity after COVID-19 must be flexible, collaborative and stricter. These seven steps can help security professionals transform their strategies accordingly.