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How Employees are Unintentionally Putting Their Company and Data at Risk

Employees

Security threats don't only come from the outside. The biggest threats are often sitting right in the office. Whether it's adult websites, checking personal email or social media, your employees are accessing content that is putting your business at risk.

Throughout South Florida, many employees use their own computers and mobile devices for work. For those who are still using company owned equipment, there are risks of compromising company data, especially if employees are using the equipment for personal use.

Security is the number one reason why employers are asking their employees to limit personal use of company owned devices. Whether intentional or not, performing certain tasks or visiting the wrong website can lead to security disasters.

Here are some of the ways employees are unknowingly putting their company at risk by accessing websites and performing tasks for personal use on company equipment.

UNINFORMED EMPLOYEES:
Most employees are not acting with malicious intent when they surf the Internet from their South Florida workplace. When an employee visits their Facebook page, in their eyes the only thing they’re doing wrong is using company time. The problem is, most employees have no idea that such a simple act is putting their company at risk. When you surf the web you’re always open to some kind of risk and that is the number one reason your employers prefer you don’t put their data and company in that position.

Social media is a new platform for cyber security threats and poses huge risk to Florida businesses because it is difficult to monitor or secure. Almost half of U.S. employees are said to access their personal social media accounts while at work, which is a problem because malware can easily disguise itself. Your employee might not think twice about clicking on a malicious link found in a tweet or Facebook post.

Over 600,000 Facebook accounts are hacked every day. If you’re using a company device to access a compromised account, you’re opening a door to a hacker who can then get into your company’s network via your email or PC. 

BYOD:
BYOD, short for “Bring Your Own Devices” refers to employees being able to bring their own devices to work. While there are many benefits to having use of these devices in the office, there are always going to be risks involved. When your IT department approves your devices for work use, they put rules into place so they can monitor and control what and how data is being shared across those devices.

On the other hand, when your IT department doesn’t know about the devices you are using for office use, they are vulnerable and unable to protect the company from outside threat and third party infiltration

DATA LEAKAGE:
Unauthorized employee use of personal devices at work can lead to problems
. Something as simple as downloading a new application for work or using a cloud based solution like Dropbox to help get a job completed quicker can put your company at risk. When employees are using the cloud without authorization, they are leaving your company with no data control, as files can be shared from any unsecured device or network outside of your office. This is an example of how your employees have just made data leakage possible.

The issue with employees posing as a security threat in their office environment is that there isn't a perfect solution. Companies need to understand this and they need to help educate their employees on security. South Florida employees need to understand the risks they pose not only to their company, but to themselves. From uninformed employees to BYOD to data leakage, the mistakes they unintentionally make in the office are the same mistakes they can make in their own homes.  

  

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