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6 Simple Security Tips for Employees working from home

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Amid the Coronavirus pandemic, lots of changes have taken place to combat the spread of the Virus. Restricted movements and social distancing have had many businesses directing their employees to work from home. If you are sailing in this boat, then it means that you may be adapting to a completely unusual change.

You are now working from home away from the routine office environment. The uncertainty of how long you will continue working from home could be making it even harder. The urge to binge-watch, rest on the couch, plus noises from neighbors and family might be adding to the distraction.

Other than being productive, cybersecurity is another big issue in this new model. At your workplace, the networks and your devices are likely protected from cyber-attacks by the IT team. At home, now you have a bigger role in ensuring you protect yourself. Yes, you have to secure your networks and device to avoid harsh consequences that could come with leaking critical business data. Now, do you know how you can ensure your networks and devices are secure?

Let us look into some simple security tips that you can use to avoid cyber-attacks. 

Keep your work devices physically safe.

You have to ensure that your devices are physically safe from unauthorized access. Therefore, before leaving your home work station, ensure that all your work devices are locked or shut down, and this includes mobile phones that you use for work. If you do not have a home office, make sure that at the end of the day, you keep your wok devices out of sight. This will not only protect the device from unauthorized access but also ensure that children and pets do not tamper with them. 

Tip: 

  • Try to create a small workspace at home to help improve productivity and improve work security.
  • If you are in public spaces, then beware that someone might be eavesdropping

Update your software and applications

As a rule of thumb, you need to have the latest versions of software and applications. You ought to know that cybercriminals find new ways of attacking every day. The version that you are lazing to update could already be vulnerable to attacks. Some of the software upgrades you might be ignoring are released to patch security vulnerabilities. 

Use anti-malware to keep your devices safe.

Some cyber attackers are working hard to introduce malware to your networks and devices. But, with anti-malware installed into your device, you can at least keep the documents safe from destruction or theft. It will help prevent you from getting into trouble by losing your employer’s data that could lead to a costly breach. 

Ensure your connections are secure

Securing your connection ensures safe data transmission by making it hard for cybercriminals to access it. Set strong passwords for your networks and devices by a combination of numbers, upper and lower case letters, and symbols. Encrypt your Wi-Fi to limit access. You can use WPA2 to ensure that your data is protected during transmission, which keeps it safe from attack by cybercriminals. For your Wi-Fi router, ensure you change the logins and passwords frequently. Also, be careful with who you share the login details with.

Moreover, be cautious of using a Wi-Fi network that you do not have security control over. If you must, then ensure you use a VPN if you are using public Wi-Fi out there. Remember, most of the public Wi-Fi networks are not encrypted, and if encrypted, their password is accessible to a lot of people. So, using these networks for work makes you work data vulnerable to access by cybercriminals. 

Another good security approach is installing a software firewall in your own network. This will create a barrier between an external network and your network, making it hard for cybercriminals to access your data. 

In case you are facing trouble with securing your connection, then you can seek scalable IT support for help ensuring you have the right security levels. It is even way cheaper and far more efficient outsourcing support from a pro rather than doing it on your own.

Use secure services in the transmission of work data.

It is important to make use of secure ways as you collaborate with the team. Some of the best tools that allow secure collaboration are the likes of one drive, SharePoint, Google Docs, Zoho Docs, etc. Some of these tools give you complete control over files, including restricting things like printing, download, forwarding, and other security features.

Others even have two-factor authentication methods to help secure files. Now, your employer should ideally be able to give you the right tools for collaboration as you work from home.  If this is not the case, then try to use free but secure collaboration tools. 

Be alert

You should be cautious when working from home so that you can be able to identify cybersecurity issues fast. For example, when you receive an email even though the corporate services and you doubt the source, do not reply to it. Do not click to suspicious links sent to you through emails, especially though spam, they could be phishing emails. Yes, in case anything suspicious comes up, seek assistance from an IT expert. You should also avoid visiting sites that might expose you to attacks. Only use credible sites and be on the lookout for anything suspicious that might expose you. 

Wrap up

As more and more people work from home during this period, cybercriminals are certainly looking to take advantage. In this regard, you must take security measures to secure yourself and the company data. It is important to be alert about cybersecurity and do not hesitate to seek professional assistance in case you suspect an attack. 

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