With hybrid work models quickly becoming the norm, organizations are tasked with creating a safe environment for workers returning to the office, while simultaneously ensuring access and security for those working remotely.
According to Gartner, 51% of all knowledge workers globally (those in knowledge-intensive positions such as writers, accountants, and engineers) would have worked remotely by the end of 2021.
As remote work is not standardized and varies across regions of the world, 31% of workers globally are expected to be remote, including a mix of hybrid and fully remote telework, in 2022.
Growing demand for remote and hybrid working across Asia-Pacific
In Asia-Pacific, remote job applications are increasing in China, India, Australia and Singapore, as interest and demand for remote work among job seekers continues to rise.
Likewise, organizations in the region are adapting to a more dispersed workforce and actively creating and hiring remote positions, as the shift to remote work opens up new opportunities for both the workforce work and organizations.
It is therefore crucial to meet the evolving security and identity needs of today’s hybrid workforce and enterprises as they embrace the new way of working.
Authentication and access management strategies and policies need to be recalibrated and implemented for organizations to optimize user security, business continuity, and regulatory compliance in the hybrid world.
Securing the Hybrid Enterprise
Security and facilities teams should consider physical access trends that will ensure the safety of workers and security professionals returning to the office and working remotely.
Contactless solutions and data protection technologies facilitate robust and secure on-premises environments, while multi-factor authentication solutions take center stage for remote applications. These initiatives represent the latest trends in physical access and best practices for realizing this new paradigm.
As the pandemic has ushered in a new sense of awareness of how people interact with objects and each other, the demand for touchless access control solutions that help reduce viral transmissions at touchpoints human-object and to minimize potential cross-contamination has increased steadily. These innovations are also more sustainable in the long term because they reduce plastic waste.
Another advantage of contactless access control solutions is convenience for users and security administrators. Because of its ease and appeal, mobile access provides additional choice and convenience for everyday users, with security administrators issuing and revoking credentials digitally and remotely, eliminating in-person interactions on the workplace.
Driving the growth of mobile access control, data protection helps secure personal data and identity as this information is stored in mobile phones instead of stationary devices where identity theft is more likely to occur. occur. This portability benefit where one carries their own digital identity with them eliminates the need to provide or exchange personal biometric data to access buildings and digital portals.
Best Practices and Recommended Strategies
Balancing the demands and complexities of remote and onsite work can be difficult. Below are some recommended considerations and strategies for securing the hybrid enterprise:
- Double development – Technology and innovation will only move faster, more processes will migrate to the cloud, and security must be ready for the emergence of hyper-automation. This translates into an infrastructure upgrade to support cloud and on-premises solutions that are not only highly secure, but also transparent and future-ready.
- Prepare for data proliferation – The rise of connected architectures, the Internet of Things (IoT) and peripherals leads to the design of associated data. In the new world where data is the new oil, using data with agility and speed will be the new basis of differentiation. Smartphones, mobile identities (IDs) and biometrics provide uninterrupted and easy access, accelerating the use of digital information to identify anomalies and improve the user interface. Therefore, personal data and user identities need to be protected and privacy issues need to be addressed as more companies adopt hybrid working in the future.
- Access without password – Provide access to corporate resources through the use of high-assurance digital credentials instead of passwords, and advanced security options for remote workers.
- Implement new authentication policies – Organizations should consider implementing an advanced authentication solution based on the Zero Trust model to deploy secure identities at scale and address the growing complexity of hybrid workforces and compliance challenges. The authentication solution must be integrated and composed of a full range of authenticators, credential management systems, authentication services, client applications and digital certificates to meet various organizational needs, diversity of user populations and use cases.