Feb 27, 2024

Managing cybersecurity risks in diverse remote working environments

Remote working is here to stay. In this guest post, our Chief Information Security Officer Robert Haist explores this new frontier, and what you can do to navigate its security challenges.

  • Connect and support people
  • Introduction 

    Whether your company is big or small, you and your colleagues probably work remotely at least sometimes. In fact, in a recent TeamViewer survey 99% of respondents said their employees work remote (2%) or hybrid (97%) all the time. How the times have changed!

    We all know that these diverse working environments bring a range of benefits. Among them, greater flexibility for employees, enhanced productivity, and access to a broader pool of talent. But we also know that they diversify and extend cybersecurity risks. Let’s look at them now.

    What are we up against?

    To better understand the threats, let’s compare today’s working world to that of only five years ago. In 2019, most staff worked full-time at the office, five days a week. Usually, just a few freelancers or individuals in certain functions got remote access.

    Today, all employees, regardless of role or function, need some remote access and support. This is difficult to manage, even when all your staff are in the same time zone or country, and you have a central IT team. But this is much more challenging if your workers are across the globe and using countless devices, solutions, and systems.

    For large enterprises, the scale of the company itself can attract hackers. Yet, this doesn’t mean SMBs are off the hook. Other cyber criminals will choose to target them, believing they’ll be easy prey. In both cases, businesses are often not prepared enough to defend against threats.

    For example, many companies will know about the risks of email and phishing scams. But they may think less about the impact of ‘bring your own device’ (BYOD) policies. These add complexity to the network, and a lack of visibility of software and hardware. Under-resourced IT teams and businesses running lean can make this problem worse.

    To tackle these new risks, you need a solution that delivers hyper-efficiency and good compatibility. It also needs to protect diverse and decentralized working environments. But what should that look like?

    Enter remote management tools

    A growing number of organizations have embraced remote management tools as the solution. These offer connectivity and the ability to deliver real-time access. Not only this, but they can offer monitoring, management, control, and device repair. Our research found that 90% of respondents agree that a robust remote connectivity platform is vital in our hybrid economy.

    If they’re not handled correctly, though, these tools can expose the organization to malicious activity. Thankfully, there are several steps businesses can follow to keep both company and employee data safe.

    The keys to securing remote connectivity and management

    Acknowledge the risk

    Before doing anything, the first thing you need to do is acknowledge the existence of risks. Remote connectivity and management can expose your business to threats. This means that you need a solution to keep you safe.

    Get a security mindset

    Shifting working models have made businesses more prone to attacks, and you need to build a security stance based on this. This should involve defining clear security expectations. It should also raise awareness about security and how it relates to privacy threats for staff and company partners. With this knowledge, all stakeholders will be empowered to work together towards the security of your business.

    Don’t scrimp on security

    The crucial next step is investing in remote management tools that have security at their heart. You need something that will allow you to oversee and manage your IT inventory. It should also offer password randomization, device authentication, multi-factor authentication, and conditional access.

    All this will relieve time-strapped IT teams, who can then focus on important management and security challenges. You should also choose a solution that delivers compliance with existing and upcoming regulations, such as GDPR, SOC2, HIPAA, and ISO 27001.

    Keep innovating

    Beyond this, companies should look for providers who are open to potential security risks. To improve their services, they should encourage ethical hacking within bug bounty programs. They should also be staying current with the latest developments in the wider security community.


    Remote working is here to stay, and so are remote management tools. But remote working doesn’t have to mean reduced security. With remote management tools, remember that they only serve your business if they deliver strong security. Get this, and your business can enjoy the benefits of diverse remote working environments — without the risks.

    Robert Haist

    Chief Information Security Officer at TeamViewer

    Robert Haist is the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at TeamViewer. He is responsible for the internal and product security programs to keep our customers safe. He is passionate about Information security, threat intelligence, and incident response.