Tips to protect your computer while working from home

Issue 3 2022 Smart Home Automation

Many people are now working from home or using a hybrid work model, which means more employees than ever are taking their office computers home. Most companies have an IT department that handles cybersecurity in the office, but that might not protect you when you’re at home. If you work from home, even part-time, it’s vital to follow these tips to ensure you have the security that protects you and your company.

Install and use antivirus software: Every company should have antivirus software installed on its devices. If your company laptop or PC doesn’t, ask your IT department about getting it. This software creates a barrier to protect your computer from viruses, making them less vulnerable to hacking.

Update your system and apps constantly: Like you should update your smart home devices regularly, the same applies to your company’s operating system and all associated apps. Check for updates at least once per week, turn on automatic updates, and always install the latest security updates as soon as they’re available.

Don’t allow family to access work devices: Never let your spouse or children use your work computer or phone. They may not know that accessing certain websites on a work computer can make it vulnerable to data breaches. It’s best to secure your PC, laptop, and other work devices using a password and multi-factor authentication.

Cover your webcam: Use a lens cover or even a piece of black electrical tape to cover your webcam when it’s not in use. Hackers can access your webcam and spy on you, listen to phone conversations, or use it to bribe you while making a cybersecurity threat. Unplug your webcam if it’s separate from your computer when you’re not using it.

Use a company-provided VPN: If your company has VPN software, ensure that you’re using it while you work from home. Configure your home network to connect to the company VPN automatically.

Use centralised storage: All employees should be on the same cloud or company server when storing important documents and other data. This ensures that your company has backup if the system is ever compromised or if local files are lost or accidentally deleted. It also protects documents by using the company firewall attached to the centralised storage solution.

Keep your Wi-Fi secure: Use the tips mentioned in the previous article to keep your home Wi-Fi secure, including setting up unique passwords, using multi-factor authentication, and regularly installing any security updates. Remember to implement WPA2 network encryption.

Be aware of email scams and keep your email secure: There are countless phishing and other scams that can come through in an email. Always check on links included in emails by previewing them first, and never click on any suspicious links. Make sure that you configure your work email settings to block email addresses that come from scam websites or suspicious senders.

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