Guest post by Karlyn McKell
Has your living room recently transformed into your conference room too? If so, you’re not the only one. COVID-19 has transformed the way many of us live our daily lives, including how we work and where we log on from each day.
To stop the spread of the virus, many nonessential businesses have opted to dial in remotely rather than have employees return to the office. This adjustment has allowed workplaces to reduce the risk of people contracting it on the clock.
Now that employees can work from anywhere, company data can be anywhere, too. Remote work brings new security risks, and it seems that bad agents have been more than happy to take advantage of lax security measures. In fact, cybersecurity attacks are on the rise by as much as 300%.
The problem is that data and information that used to remain within company walls has now moved to employees homes and remote workspaces. Whether they’re taking a call at their kitchen table or outside at a nearby coffee shop, more people can know hear calls and potentially gain access to work devices and documents.
If you’ve recently shifted to remote work, or have been for awhile but looking to secure your home set up, check out these remote work tips:
- Only work on company-issued devices. Now that everyone has a smartphone and many of us have personal laptops, iPads, and more, checking in on work with personal devices is more commonplace. If your company has put security in place on your work devices, then you shouldn’t log in on an unsecured device though.
- Avoid public Wi-Fi at all costs. Dialing in from a secure home network is a lot safer than logging onto a public Wi-Fi network at a local shop or restaurant. This is because you can password protect your network at home. If you do work on the go, use a personal hotspot for a safer connection. In fact, if a breach is to occur on a personal device rather than an employee device, insurance likely won’t cover it.
- Change your password often. You hear this a lot, but it’s one of the best ways to protect yourself and your company. Update your password every 90 days or, to be extra safe, every 30. If suspicious activity occurs, change your password immediately.
- Automate your software updates. This ensures your device and programs are always outfitted with the latest security measures.
- Set boundaries for meetings so other employees know when sensitive information is being discussed. It can be tempting to take a call with a child in the car, but if you warn your employees ahead of time to be alone they can make arrangements to ensure privacy.
For even more tips to stay secure online, and a list of common cyber attacks, check out this infographic from The Zebra.
Karlyn is a writer who specializes in the technology and insurance spaces. She believes the best ingredients for success are passion and purpose