Content Filtering: A Vital Tool for Business Security

With states gradually reopening across the country, businesses everywhere are taking different approaches to bring employees back to the physical workplace. While some employers have announced a remote working policy for the rest of the year or even indefinitely, others have tentatively opened offices in accordance with local and CDC guidelines.

Working remotely brings both new benefits and new challenges, but with a smart, thoughtful approach, business owners and employees can maximize the upside and minimize any potential security risks. For those employers and employees working from home for the foreseeable future, all should ensure that productivity stays consistent and cybersecurity protocols are in place and respected.

So as business owners assess their structure on these topics, they should ask themselves: What resources are there to help ensure employee productivity, network protection, and avoid liability issues? That’s where content filtering comes in.

 

 

Content Filtering

One cybersecurity tool businesses can implement is content filtering technologies or content-control software[1], which regulates the content a user can access on the internet. Whether through a webpage, e-mail, app or other online communication platform, a content filtering program can restrict access to objectionable content or damaging malware. Malware can include: viruses, spyware, stalkerware and other unwanted software that get installed on your computer or mobile device without consent, thus jeopardizing sensitive personal and professional information.[2]

Using a content filtering tool helps make navigating the internet and e-mail safer for businesses of all sizes, employees, and even parents with children at home.[3] From a security perspective, enacting content filtering pushes employees to only do work on corporate computers, thus ensuring that work-related materials and research is done using corporate-approved protocols, hardware, proper antivirus software and monitoring systems to keep the information secure.

For employees working from home at unprecedented levels, content filters can also help boost productivity levels when social media and certain websites are restricted on the corporate network. According to a 2018 study, when organizations do not restrict any internet activity, 58% of employees spend twenty-six workdays per year on websites unrelated to their job![4]

Content filtering technologies come with both pros and cons, so of course it is of utmost importance that businesses inform their employees of content filtering so that they are aware of the settings, the level of security implemented and how it might inadvertently block useful content.[5] While content filtering is a helpful tool, it is only one part of a holistic security strategy, not a universal solution to employee productivity and security.

To learn more about how to keep your business and employees secure, and to ensure that you have the right tools in place at home, visit www.adt.com/business/cybersecurity.

 

Sources:

[1] https://www.webjunction.org/documents/webjunction/Understanding_Content_Filtering_An_FAQ_for_Nonprofits.html

[2] https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0011-malware

[3] https://www.internetmatters.org/issues/inappropriate-content/protect-your-child/

[4] https://www.zdnet.com/article/how-website-filtering-affects-workplace-productivity/

[5] https://www.simplewallsoftware.com/tips/pros-cons-of-internet-filtering-in-small-businesses

 

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