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Mobile workforce pose security risks

Businesses looking to offer their employees the flexibility of working from home are putting themselves at risk if they fail to adopt security measures suitable for dealing with a mobile workforce.

According to AVG (AU/NZ), it is estimated that in Australia approximately one in four employees spends at least part of their working week working from home.

Lloyd Borrett, AVG Security Evangelist, said technological changes, such as smart phones, mobile computers, tablets and the impending rollout of the National Broadband Network (NBN) will continue to make it easier for people to work from home.

“Mobile workers now exist in many forms. In addition to home-based employees, remote connections to company data may extend to field staff, partner companies sharing data links with the business, freelancers, consultants and contractors.”

Borrett warns however, that working from home isn’t without its disadvantages.

“On the flip-side, it will also make it easier for company networks to be hacked and valuable information to be lost or stolen if businesses do not put the right protection measures in place for newly mobile workers,” Borrett said. “The changing mobile worker landscape has created a constant need to define and measure the parameters within these new worker types operate and implement back up and security measures that protect them.”

An IT security policy combining traditional desktop and network security solutions with mobile protection offerings will protect businesses against such security risks.

“Under a robust and up-to-date Internet security umbrella, companies of all sizes should be able to reap rewards by empowering their workforce with mobility and flexibility to work from home or other locations – while protecting their business information and networks.”