Managing Remote Employee Productivity and Security: A Guide of VPNs and HTTPS for HRs

Work from home is often associated with the 2019 onset of the pandemic, but the trend was already on the rise before that. That’s because working from home is extremely possible in today’s environment, especially if all you need is a phone, a computer, and access to company resources. 

Now, while many companies are happy to issue a work computer and phone, the “access to company resources” part raises a series of worries and challenges. Of course, the main challenge is data security, especially after the increase in cybercrime that targets small and medium-sized businesses. 

Today, we’ll discuss how to handle remote workers and how to help them thrive by creating a secure work environment regardless of their location.

Remote Workers & Cybersecurity Worries

The main security threat comes from employees accessing sensitive data using external networks, which are often unsecured. Home and public networks (like the ones on a train or in a coffee shop) are vulnerable to attacks and may have been infiltrated by listeners who gather all the data sent via that network.

Therefore, if an employee uses an unsecured network to log in to your company systems, they can give away crucial security information, such as passwords or log in credentials. Or, they may download sensitive information to their personal devices, which are often unprotected and don’t follow the most rigorous standards of security.

According to a study from Stanford University, 88% of data breach incidents were caused by employee errors. This happens because most employees don’t receive proper cybersecurity training and don’t understand the risks.

Most people think that because most websites today use HTTPS, their online activities are safe. And, for regular online browsing, from a personal device, this is true. However, things change completely when it comes to handling sensitive information. 

This is when you have to teach them about the importance of VPN!


Due to the use of HTTPS, 95% of internet traffic is encrypted and protected from prying eyes. However, this doesn’t mean HTTPS can shield you from everything. For instance, this protocol doesn’t encrypt data that can be used for tracing your location and identity, such as IP address, physical address, the sites you visit, and more.

When you want to obscure your online identity fully, you need a private encrypted tunnel, which can only be achieved through the use of a reliable VPN. This type of service encrypts your online activity and hides your traces from anyone hoping to get a peek into your activity.

Policies & Productivity Standards

Besides making sure your company implements the cybersecurity basics, it’s also essential to create a set of rules and standards that apply to remote workers. 

Here are a few sensitive areas to cover:

  • Company-issued devices controlled by the IT department
  • Two-factor authentication for all employees
  • Regular software updates
  • Periodic backups
  • Clear rules regarding document sharing between employees
  • Clear policy regarding document sharing with outside collaborators and partners
  • Access to secure collaborative tools
  • Access to secure communication platforms

Furthermore, for all employees to have access to the information they need, you’ll have to implement an intuitive information system that’s easily available online (think cloud-based solutions).

And, to make sure the documents and other resources don’t get mixed up (which will create confusion and will lead to mistakes and waste of time), your company needs a proper management system that keeps everything in check. 

Training and Cybersecurity Education

You can’t always supervise your employees and their cybersecurity practices, but you can organize several training sessions where they’ll learn about the risks. Also, it’s a good idea to have a common digital board where everyone can discuss their cybersecurity worries and needs. 

If your employees are up to date with the latest threats and understand the need for clear and strict security policies, your company’s cybersecurity level will improve significantly.

Key Takeaway

The use of a VPN service and making sure all the websites your employees access are HTTPS protected are essential steps toward a more secure workplace for remote workers. Of course, proper cybersecurity education and clear policies are just as important.

Editorial Team
This article was written by Editorial a Consultant at Industrial Psychology Consultants (Pvt) Ltd

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