In the last decade, work-from-home has gained tremendous popularity. With the advent of modern work technologies, companies are finding it easy to maintain and engage a remote workforce.
What has once considered a distant dream is now a reality. In fact, 70% of the global workforce works from home, at least once a week. This clearly depicts how companies are adapting to the concept of remote work.
Well, the one concern that remains super high when you have employees working from home is security. What about the threat of data theft? How to safeguard client privacy? How to prevent online scams and fraudulent activities?
If these questions are troubling you, do not worry – you are not alone. Many employers do not move towards work-from-home options due to these concerns. However, if your company has a robust IT infrastructure and secure servers, you can minimize the major risks by promoting a safe virtual work environment.
Here are seven cybersecurity measures and tips for working from home, that will definitely prove to be useful in tightening security:
1. Strong Passwords
One of the most important cybersecurity tips for all professionals working from home is to ensure strong passwords that comprise upper and lower string characters, numbers, and special characters.
Keep your passwords unique for different accounts, and also make sure to change them on a regular basis. This is because if you use only one password for all your accounts, in case of a hacking, you will lose access to all your organizational data. You could also choose to use an automated password manager to create, edit, and autofill passwords that are strong for all your business accounts.
2. Promote Encrypted Communication
If you are working from home, then you surely need to communicate with clients, colleagues, and team members. Some of your emails may contain sensitive information; hence, it is a smart idea to use an end-to-end encryption tool for an added layer of safety.
An encryption solution will generate a password that you can send the final recipient of the email, and only through that will the mail be decrypted. It makes sure that no unauthorized personnel can access your mails and keeps your data in safe hands. Most companies that have a large workforce encourage the use of encryption software so that there is no chance of any kind of data theft or loss.
3. Separate Work and Personal Devices
One golden rule that can go a long way in enhancing the security of organizational data is to maintain separate devices for personal and business communication. While it may seem to be a challenging task to switch between two laptops or mobile devices, this will greatly help in restricting access. The more programs and applications that you install, the more vulnerable you will remain to hackers and data miscreants. Hence, make sure to separate your official devices from the personal ones, so that there is less chance of any cybercrime or loss of data.
4. Beware of Phishing Emails
Phishing emails can be voicemails or text emails that are used by cybercriminals to ‘phish’ or extract information. This data is used to hack email accounts, misuse credit card information, and into business applications.
Many times, remote workers are targeted by online fraudsters; hence, they need to remain cautious and never reveal any kind of business or personal information. There is no need to click on a link or attachment until you are certain that you know the sender. If there is any doubt, it is better to report the email as suspicious, so that it can be checked – after all, better safe than sorry!
5. Keep Mandatory Data Backups
If there is one thing that you absolutely cannot afford to lose, it has to be your company data. It is possible to suffer data loss due to human error, natural calamities, hardware damage, or cyber-attacks. Keeping a backup of all data is mandatory – this is a proactive strategy that will keep you prepared in case of unexpected data loss.
Most companies have realized that the most flexible, convenient, and cost-effective way to manage their data is to store it in the cloud. This can be retrieved at any time, and most cloud-based storage solutions can customize data backup schedules automatically, for added convenience.
6. Set Up Firewalls and Antivirus Software
It is vital to install firewalls that can act as the first line of defense between online threats and your work device. They can prevent any kind of malicious software from entering your laptop or computer – in fact, most operating systems have in-built firewalls for extra protection.
It is also necessary to invest in reliable anti-virus software to prevent any malware. Most anti-virus software can easily detect any kind of suspicious activity and send automated alerts to users so that they can check and report any threats.
7. Install Regular Updates
If your employees are working from home, it is necessary to educate them on the need to update their software regularly. All the automated solutions used by workers should be updated to the latest version that supports your organization’s security policy.
One tip that can help is to schedule your updates on a calendar so that you don’t forget. You could also opt for automatic updates on a particular day or time of the week – this will make sure that your software runs smoothly and is tightly secured from external threats.
Make sure to follow these cybersecurity tips for working from home effectively. Foster healthy communication with remote workers so that they can adopt safe working conditions and do not compromise organizational data.
Armed with these useful tips, remote workers can enhance productivity and stave off any kind of threat. They can keep data secure and take added precautions to create a stringently safe work environment. So, make sure to handle your cybersecurity with care, so that your precious information remains safe from hackers and miscreants in the long run.