As an employee, you are probably one of the soldiers always at the front line when it comes to taking care of and protecting your company’s information. But you are also the guy who doesn’t like taking his work home, and so the only time you have to worry about its safety is when you are the office. Your company has its own cybersecurity policies so you have little to worry about.
Everything seems to work out great for you until the year 2020, which brings with it the COVID -19 crisis. This is one of the scariest viruses ever recorded in human history. A virus so deadly, it has billion-dollar companies and major transport industries such as airlines shutting down and sending their workers home.
However, since we are in an era where anything can be done online, major companies, yours included, are allowing their employees to work from home where they are safer from the virus. So, now everything has changed, and you have been forced to bring your work home where your wife and children are. Things just became a bit tricky and you now have to find a way to secure your work while at home.
COVID – 19 not only seems to be endangering the lives of people but, also threatens the safety of employee and company data. The fact that millions of people have been forced to work from home may have just raised the cybersecurity risk and this has to be monitored and controlled as soon as possible.
Home, for many people, is where they go to relax and thus many hardly bother to protect their data or network as much as they would have when at the office. Basically, the cybersecurity level in most homes is usually low compared to company level security.
Orange County IT Services were once paralyzed when hackers planted ransomware that slowed down the services in some of its major public offices such as police stations, libraries, and deeds registration offices. The hackers later demanded ransom to undo their damage. This is an example of some of the risks involved in working from home where the safety of the network you are on is not guaranteed.
If such hackers were, for instance, to access confidential data about your company or business as you work at home, they could use it to cause serious damage to your reputation.
With the new changes, you will now have to share some bit of your working space with your family, friends or neighbors. So how are you going to secure your current home office?
Tips on How to Cyber Secure Your Home Office
Do not mix personal and business materials or devices while at home
Once you have established where your office space will be at home, ensure that you only have your office devices there. Do not use any home devices to store or transfer your work information. This will help prevent any accidental leakage or flow of information especially by the wife or kids who are at home with you. It will also be a psychological method of keeping you alert during office hours.
Only take home what is necessary for your work
So as to avoid any major loss, only carry home the necessary devices and information that you need to work with.
Always keep your device’s software updated
Working from home means that you will be sharing your company devices with the public network which is most likely less secure. This means data you will be exposing your company data and information to routers that are connected to other multiple devices such as phones or computers that are not protected. Updating your device operating system and security software is thus a good way to keep them safe from hackers.
Use the latest technology available
Install the best and latest antiviruses, firewalls and anti-malware that can guarantee your device safety. If you do not know what you are doing, you can always ask for help from experts. Some reliable Orange county IT services can be from known experts such as Ayvant IT Services & Techifornia.
Seek Reliable IT Service Providers
Do some research on the service providers around you to ensure you get the best services available. Ayvant is considered one of the best orange county managed service providers that are guaranteed to help you secure your home office network. They provide their services in Irvine, Santa Ana, Fullerton, Orange, Tustin, Costa Mesa, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, Huntington Beach, Anaheim, Los Angeles, San Diego and other cities in Orange County, Los Angeles, San Diego & Riverside, California.
Be on the alert of any suspicious apps or emails that may pop-up on your device
Given that you are now on a public network, you are likely to receive random spam emails or apps or browser notifications on your devices trying to promote something. You should, therefore, be extremely careful of what you open on your device as they can as well be hackers with malicious intentions.
Ensure you know everyone you are talking to during an online meeting
Online meetings will probably be part of what you do while at home as it helps employers to actively follow up on everyone’s progress even when away. You should, therefore, ensure that anyone who is taking part in the online meeting is a known colleague.
Use a VPN to secure communication
VPNs (Virtual Private Network) are meant to act as private tunnels that can help ensure the flow of information is only between you and the person it is intended for. This ensures that private data is kept away from potential hackers.
Avoid using random devices you find at home such as a USB
An insecure USB device can easily introduce malware into your work device and cause damages. You should thus limit the devices you use to only the ones you know are safe.
In case of a ransomware attack such as the one that happened to the orange county, having a backup of your work is always good.
Always log off once you are done with work
Even if it is only to take a lunch break, always remember to follow your company rules and log-off your device which should also have a password to avoid any unauthorized access.
Having created your new office space at home, always ensure your devices are safely locked up just as they would have been back at company building. If your office is a separate room at home, lock the door with a key so that your kids do not have access to it unless you authorize them.