The Covid-19 pandemic created an unprecedented rise in remote workers from March 2020 onwards, as people worldwide were no longer able to carry out their duties in offices.
This trend continued through 2021 as it was reported by Global Workplace Analytics that around 25-30% of the workforce worked from home for several days a week by the end of 2021.
However, a survey carried out by Good Hire in April 2022 showed that 77% of managers would take action if workers refused to return to the office. This would involve either firing staff or cutting their pay.
With such large threats looming, why is remote work expected to increase in the coming years rather than decrease?
Why Remote Work Will Increase in 2023
The pandemic shifted workers’ perception of how companies are run and function entirely. Workers who were told for decades that they had no choice but to come in early, leave late, spend a substantial amount of time and money commuting to their bland, uninspiring office and be grateful for it were suddenly more productive and happier working from their spare bedroom.
With a formidable amount of the workforce worldwide more fulfilled than ever with their remote job, spare free time, and extra cash while still demonstrably keeping on top of their targets and duties, threatening to fire people is no longer going to work.
32% of those surveyed by Owl Labs said they would quit their job if they could not continue working remotely.
For those who are completely burnt out, dealing with the process of finding a new remote job is far more attractive than heading back into an office unnecessarily. In today’s new landscape, it’s unreasonable to force people back into offices so that managers can tick boxes.
The CEO of Facebook stated that he expects 50% of its workforce to be working remotely by 2030. So, the outlook is overwhelming that other companies will just have to get used to this idea, as well.
What Are the Risks of Remote Work?
Remote work does have its downside, namely, the risks of cyberattacks and data hacks. Any work that uses the internet is at risk; that is just the nature of the internet.
For those using the internet for their work to input data, share files, code, set up accounts, design websites, and so much more, these are the kinds of attacks that can happen:
- Trojan Attacks
- Phishing Attacks
- Malware Attacks
- Ransomware Attacks
How Can People Protect Themselves From Cyber-Attacks?
The idea of being a victim of a cyber attack can be scary. Especially since the outcome can involve financial loss and an emotional and mental aspect.
However, people can protect themselves against cyberattacks when working remotely; here’s how.
1. Use Antivirus Software
Antivirus software is an excellent line of defense against cyberattacks. The software can alert you to wrong links, spam messages, false websites, and more, preventing you from accidentally clicking somewhere you shouldn’t and having your device or information hacked remotely.
2. Install a VPN
Installing a VPN is always a simple solution and works in several ways to protect your device and data (https://nordvpn.com/download/). A VPN allows you to use a virtual private network to browse the internet, encrypting your private and sensitive information and your activity, keystrokes, and more, stopping the bad guys from being able to follow what you’re doing.
3. Use Strong Passwords
A strong and unique password should be used on all your accounts, personal and work-related. You should never use the same password twice, nor should you ever choose something simple. Use a password manager to help you have the most robust passwords possible.
4. Keep Software Updated
Occasionally, various software on your device will need updating. Ensure you keep on top of these updates as they often contain increased security measures and bug fixes that may have opened your device up to vulnerabilities previously.
There’s no doubt that remote work is here to stay. While certain companies may periodically push back and try to get more staff back into the office, they are yet to offer a good enough justification for forcing remote workers back into cubicles and meeting rooms.
Remote work increases workers’ happiness and productivity and saves time and money, all of which many people are, understandably, not willing to give up any time soon.
However, even though remote work can come with technology risks such as cyberattacks and hacking scams, workers can easily protect themselves by implementing simple steps like using antivirus software, installing a VPN, using strong, unique passwords, and keeping all programs up to date.
Working remotely can be an enjoyable experience without any hiccups along the way!