According to the Berg Institute, 15% of the overall workforce in Canada, the United States, and Europe work remotely, which amounts to approximately 53 million people. A recent Forrester report found that up to 54% of workers who work remotely at least once a month, including business travelers, do not use privacy screens while completing lone work. This in itself opens up a myriad of risks a traveling employee may encounter; everything from opportunistic cyber-attacks, or hacks, to a competitor reading over your shoulder.
Corporations have a duty of care to keep traveling and lone employees safe. You can start tackling travel security risks using a four-pronged approach: Pre-departure planning, trip planning, post-trip actions, and feedback loops. You can use each step to help identify vulnerabilities in your current system, and tailor future travel security and advice to your employees.
Although you may receive pushback while implementing this system, it’s important to remind all employees that a travel security risk could happen to anyone, and it’s better to be proactive than reactive. One extreme example comes out of an Australian company that makes metal detectors. The company had a business traveler’s laptop get compromised while logged into hotel Wi-Fi. Hackers were able to steal designs for gold detectors that the company manufactured, and sell counterfeit products at half the price with the same design. The company was forced to slash prices by half in order to complete with the counterfeit products, which caused their profits to slip by 80%.
To learn more about how you can enhance your traveling employee’s safety, you can listen to our on-demand webinar presented by Forrester’s Heidi Shey. Below we have included our Q&A session that wrapped up the webinar. To learn more about how Everbridge can help you keep your employees safe, you may request a demo here.
Where does Everbridge get its threat data from?
- We actually have quite a few sources of threat data. Some do come from some of our partners like International SOS and others. Others may come from certain news sources, social media, through a variety or partners or directly, but we also have our own sources of information depending on where in the world we’re dealing. For example, in the US we have a pretty big footprint in public safety with over 7,500 police departments and other public safety agencies using our system. Any information that they send out to the public and local jurisdictions, we have the rights to reuse. It’s information, it’s typically vetted, categorized already with the right level of severity, urgency and certainty applied to it and that information is one of the more than 100 sources of information that we have that can be displayed in the tool. – Imad Mouline
What are your comments on smart luggage? They might be banned by airlines or restricted by airlines because of fire hazard posed by batteries et cetera.
- They are really cool designs and you have everything there. You can charge your phone and all of that but I’d hesitate to really travel with one of those. One, if the airlines are banning them, that’s going to cause you a bit of issue already. But two, a lot of these also come with GPS tracking on them which is great because it can help you to find your suitcase, but at same time it could potentially help someone track you. As a traveler I feel like I’ve got enough things on me that can potentially already present that type of risk. My smartphone is one of them so I don’t think I’d want an extra thing to connect to me in that type of way. – Heidi Shey
Does everybody check prebuilt templates or do they have services that can help build out templates for some of them, for the scenario that you discussed during the webinar?
- Yes, in many cases there are some template libraries, depending on the type of situation. They’re not necessarily completely comprehensive but certainly our professional services folks are more than happy to help you either show you how to build templates which is fairly simple and straightforward; just drag and drop. But in many cases for some of the most common types of scenarios, there are templates that you can actually use as starting points and typically make the appropriate changes based on the type of organization that you have and so on and so forth. – Imad Mouline
Do you have resources available for training on mitigating traveling employee risk? Where do you recommend going to get additional resources for this topic?
- In the copy of the report that you’ll receive for attending this webinar, there are a couple of end notes that include some resources for information. But for training, there might be some that do general security awareness training kinds of programs that would include something like a module related for business travel. I would probably want to start with Sands to see if they have anything there. Some other good resources that I’ve come across have just been thinking about all the different pieces that have been put together for people attending Blackhat and DEFCON, there’s usually some good tips there from a cybersecurity perspective. It comes down to trying to identify the kinds of training and tips that you really are looking for and need. – Heidi Shey
- There are really two different facets to this. There is the general awareness training for the employees for travel, which potentially has to be done over and over again. But then there is obviously the training for those people within the organization who are responsible for the health and safety of your travelers and potentially of your employees overall. While there may be a little bit of overlap across the board, ultimately the type of training that the people within your organization that may be reporting up to your chief security officer, under some cases under HR, et cetera is pretty different depending on how you’re organized. – Imad Mouline