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Cybersecurity Tips

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, working from home has become the norm to keep everyone safe from infection. Even with the pandemic dying, more people are leaning towards working from home.

But working from home requires being connected to the internet, and with that come a lot of cybersecurity risks. To keep you safe, we’ll be discussing helpful work-from-home cybersecurity tips to maintain an uninterrupted and safe work environment.

Here’s a list of 30 work-from-home cybersecurity tips:

Tip #1: Keep All Devices Updated

Software developers try to fix security loopholes or other service issues with frequent updates. Whenever there is an update prompt from the software dev, you should immediately update the device or the system the device is running on.

With frequent updates, all the security issues get patched out, and your devices stay safe.

Tip #2: Use A VPN

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) passes all the data on your device through a private, encrypted network tunnel. The tunnel is established across any kind of network you’re connected to at that moment.

Using a VPN keeps your data secure at public network access points and even at home. The encryption provided by a VPN makes it much harder to snoop on your traffic, location, or activity.

Tip #3: Keep Your Devices Separate

You should always keep your personal and work devices separate. If possible, keep your private network separate from the network you use to sign in to work.

That way, in case your network is compromised in any way, the hackers will not find a way into your work data.

The idea may seem very cumbersome, but it is safe in the long run because you never know which of your devices has already been compromised.

Tip #4: Don’t Use One Email For All Accounts

It’s not just about separating the devices for work and personal use. You should separate your work and personal email addresses as well.

That way, when one of your accounts is compromised, it will not affect the other accounts or other sectors, for that matter.

Another benefit of having a different email for work is that it’s a clear sign of professionalism. No one wants that awkward situation when they’re introducing themselves with an embarrassing email address in the workplace.

It’s a great practice to have separate emails for different uses. It doesn’t have to be exclusively for work or personal life. Just don’t overdo it to the point where you’re forgetting or mixing up your account credentials, which can lead to security breaches regardless of the precaution.

Tip #5: Enable Device Encryption

Encryption is the process where all the data is encoded, and the authorization for said data is only granted to specific individuals.

Even if your company doesn’t tell you to encrypt your data, you should do it anyway as an added precaution. Different systems have different methods of data encryption.

  • For Windows: BitLocker
  • For iOS: FileVault
  • Linux: dm-crypt
  • Android: Is enabled by default ever since Android 6
  • iOS: Auto-enabled since iOS 8

Tip #6: Secure Your Home Office

If you have a separate room set up as your home office, it’s best to secure the room with locks and remember to keep all your devices in check.

Devices can get stolen from home if left unattended, and anyone can walk into your office and cause you one form of harm or another, even when you are using separate devices for work purposes.

Tip #7: Secure Your Home Network

When working from home, it’s best to access work from a separate network, and access work from that network.

Even then, applying the best security practices for networks is the way to go if you’re trying to ensure your network will not be compromised.

Tip #8: Use Antivirus Programs

Antivirus software is an easy way to keep your device and network safe from

  • Malware
  • Ransomware
  • Rootkit
  • Spyware
  • Trojan

An ideal antivirus program will work behind the scenes to protect your computer from all sorts of malware attacks and will resolve any issues regarding a virus that has infected your devices or systems.

Tip #9: Use Supported OS

Over time, new vulnerabilities and exploits are discovered regarding all different types of operating systems, and some of these exploits can impact older versions heavily.

Since supporting all versions of an operating system at the same time is expensive, developers of a system only support the last few major versions of a system.

If you’re using an older version of any operating system, or an OS that is no longer supported by its developers, you’re putting your device at risk. It’s best to use an OS that has ongoing support and updates.

Tip #10: Keep Your System Updated

Even with a supported OS, there can be a delay between the disclosure and mitigation of a vulnerability. In this case, your system can fall victim to zero-day exploits.

To mitigate this issue, developers provide quick security patches. To minimize the risk to your data and other sensitive information, it’s best to apply security patches to all devices as soon as possible.

Though most modern devices apply automatic updates, you’ll need to remember to restart the devices for the patches to activate properly.

Tip #11: Enable Auto-Locking

When you’re walking away from your device, lock the device before leaving it. In case you forget, you should enable auto-locking for all your devices.

Make sure to set a convenient and reasonable timer delay when configuring the auto-locking. It’s automatically enabled on almost all modern devices.

Tip #12: Manage Your Passwords

Even with all the precautions mentioned above in place, hackers can get access to your device in one way or another. To ensure maximum security, you should assign a strong password to all your devices.