For Immediate Release
Tuesday, June 30, Kuwait
Securing Your Remote Workforce
On Tuesday, June 30, The American Business Council-AmCham Kuwait (ABCK) hosted a webinar in collaboration with Cisco titled: Securing Your Remote Workforce. The webinar focused on security risks and challenges with remote workforce, especially following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The webinar was presented by Mr. Ayed Al Qartah, Technical Solutions Architect for Cyber Security at Cisco.
In his opening remarks, Mr. Ayed greeted all attendees and thanked ABCK for the opportunity to share his knowledge with the ABCK community. He began the presentation by explaining the challenges globally with securing a remote workforce in responding to the global pandemic in a short time span. “Asking employees to start working from home was a big challenge because they were not prepared for this, allowing thousands of employees to connect remotely on a short time was challenging for many IT teams, directors, and managers” said Ayed.
Mr. Ayed explained the benefits of working from home for both employees and employers such as reduction of overhead costs, and higher productivity and efficiency. On the other hand, working remotely poses some challenges for businesses of all sizes as well as cybersecurity risks, he explained. After that, he discussed how remote workers unknowingly create more risk such as bypassing the VPN to gain corporate access, and the importance to keep employees informed and updated on these risks in order to avoid them.
He then highlighted some examples of how hackers recently leveraged COVID -19 themed campaigns to target users and corporations around the world, such as malware and phishing campaigns impersonating WHO, healthcare providers, or any government organization around the world to trick users to click on malicious links. “One famous campaign is the fake Johns Hopkins COVID -19 infection map, cyber criminals created a fake website where whenever a user click on it to access the latest numbers, it delivers malware silently to users” he said.
Mr. Ayed then proceeded to explain different ways in which IT and Security teams can enable remote working securely such as facilitating user access while minimizing shadow IT. Following that, he explained the importance of adapting a Zero-Trust Approach as opposed to the traditional approach, to ensure that every access to the network is legitimate, on any app, user, devise, and anytime during the day. In addition, he highlighted ways to maintain the last line of defense through endpoint security on corporate issued devises or personal devices.
Following that, Mr. Ayed explained how Cisco helps organizations in securing the remote access experience for their users, and their comprehensive secure remote work solution which covers all the connectivity security and other aspects threatening safe operations for organizations. He highlighted how their solution is very user friendly and how the VPN agent installed, together with the multi-factor authentication, and DNS security, work natively all together, allowing an easy and better IT experience.
To conclude, Mr. Ayed recapped the main security threats discussed and offered some final tips for securing a remote workforce. He then opened up the floor to Q&A in which he engaged the attendees in an insightful discussion and offered further clarification regarding concepts discussed throughout the webinar.
ABCK- AmCham Kuwait is a non-profit organization comprised of American corporations, small and medium sized companies, and prominent business leaders and entrepreneurs, both American and Kuwaiti. Since 1985, the American Business Council of Kuwait Ltd. (ABCK) has acted as an advocate for American companies in the State of Kuwait. For more information about ABCK, please visit our website or social media channels @abck1985
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