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Are home offices the new norm?
With more and more people opting to work from home, is it time to start thinking about home office security? If you are one of those people that have taken on a job where you will be working at home, you need to follow these 10 tips for home office cybersecurity. These are designed with your safety in mind so that the entire family can stay safe. We’ll also give some easy ways which can encourage better habits around home office security. There are many more home office security tips that you can use to protect your business environment at home. You might want to consider setting some home office rules and educating employees on home office cybersecurity.
1. Use antivirus and internet security software at home
Investing in a comprehensive antivirus package for your workers is one of the most effective security strategies for working from home.
Antivirus and internet security suites take the legwork out of keeping your computer and therefore your company data secure by providing automated remote work security against a range of dangers, including: malware, spyware, viruses, trojan horses and worms, phishing scams, including those sent via email.
2. Use/Invest in a sliding webcam cover
Webcams can be easily compromised by even inexperienced and unsophisticated adversaries if the model of a webcam is inherently vulnerable due to a lack of security-by-design. Cybercriminals can access those webcameras, and since the laptops are positioned in the living room, or workplace — which faces private space — they may see everything providing access to vulnerable information without even noticing. It's a good idea to cover up your webcam with a low cost sliding cover.
3. Use a VPN connection
A virtual private network (VPN) is a technology that allows you to transmit and receive data as if you were connected directly to the private network over the internet. They do this by creating a secure and encrypted connection with the network over the internet before routing your traffic through it. This guarantees your privacy when using public or home based hotspots, which is a great solution to give access to business data to your employees working outside the company’s premises.
4. Use a centralized storage solution
If your firm uses cloud or server storage, you should make sure all of its workers are using it. If you think that your staff is unaware or unacquainted with your storage solution, speak with them to ensure they are aware of the centralized service.
It's far easier to restore documents after they're archived in e.g. SharePoint. If your organization is hacked and local files are lost, destroyed, or tampered with, you'll be able to recover them much more quickly. This approach also ensures that crucial papers are safer since they will be safeguarded by the firewall connected to your centralized storage system.
5. Secure your home Wi-Fi
Requesting your employees to strengthen their home Wi-Fi network's security is one of the most simple methods to safeguard remote workers from cybercrime. This can be accomplished by following a few easy procedures.
Rather than depending solely on your router's default password, create a strong, distinctive one. To make it more difficult for third parties to identify and access your home Wi-Fi network, change the SSID (the name of your wireless network), as well as the settings page. Use neither your name nor any other information that may be used to identify
Ensure that your wireless network is configured to use encryption, which can typically be done via the security settings on your wireless configuration page.
Finally, check for the most recent version of the device's firmware on a regular basis by visiting the router's configuration page. Patches and software upgrades are often released to address potential security problems.
6. Make sure your passwords are strong and secure
It is mandatory to implement or enable password protection on computers, network devices, online services, files, user accounts, or data. When password protection is enabled, users receive a prompt for a username or password before they're given access. Strengthening the passwords and ensuring that employees have implemented maximum password protection on all of their assets is one of the most basic yet often neglected ways to safeguard yourself while working from home.
If you want to make managing your passwords simpler, consider using a password management software or a password account vault.
7. Be wary of email scams and your email security
Email is an essential tool for collaboration between workers. Email, on the other hand, is one of the most simple ways to communicate and jeopardize security.
Email security is critical because malicious emails are a preferred method for delivering ransomware, spyware, worms, various sorts of malware, social engineering attacks like phishing and spear phishing emails, and other cybersecurity problems.
Using multiple security tools and being aware of different email attacks can help you to mitigate these risks.
8. Separate Work and Personal Devices and Accounts
While you may feel confident in protecting yourself and your workers online, keep in mind that when they work from home, company computers are more likely to be exposed to young children and other family members of employees. Accounts tied to a company's assets can be accessed by family members as well. Employees must not manage their corporate accesses from the same (e.g. Windows) profile as their personal accounts.
As a result, you should remind staff to keep their devices and accounts secure and not to let other family members use their work computers, phones, or other hardware. It's also worth reminding them of the need to password-protect their gadgets in order to prevent third parties from seeing private and business information.
9. Encrypt Your Devices
Enabling encryption for your employees by default. It plays an important role in lowering the risk of lost or stolen devices by preventing strangers from accessing the contents of devices without a password, PIN, or biometrics.
Encryption is the process of encoding information such that only authorized people may access it. While it does not prevent interference and man-in-the-middle attacks, it does make intelligible material inaccessible to the interceptionist.
10. Enable Two-Factor Authentication and Use an Authenticator App
Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a security measure that requires the use of two pieces of evidence to verify identity.
Even if the attacker is able to obtain your password, they won't be able to log in because they don't have the second piece of evidence. They'd need access to whatever generates your one-time code, which should be an authenticator app or security key, in order to successfully login.
The first and most frequent indication is a password. The second takes numerous forms, but it is most often a one-time code or push notification. It's vital to note that SMS isn't an ideal second factor solution.
An authenticator app is a program that adds 2FA to the accounts you wish to secure. You will be given a secret key to input into the authenticator app when you set up your account for 2FA. This establishes an encrypted connection between the authenticator app and your account. Using this tool can help you save time by reducing the amount of varied proofs you must remember and utilize for 2FA. It is worth mentioning that authentication apps are not good for every kind of online tool but please use it is enabled.
Working from the comfort of your own home has become more popular in recent years. With that shift, cybersecurity becomes one hot topic - but not just for remote workers! By following our tips on how to stay safe while working remotely you can avoid risks and ensure safety both during work hours as well as at all times outside them too. Raising awareness of cybersecurity is always a best practice for all kinds of companies. Internal policies can give support to employees how to act in different situations, while regular training helps to practice the common misunderstandings.