Top 10 Cyber Security Tips For Employees Working From Home
Employees working from home means cyber criminals are working overtime. They know that many of these employees don’t have the same security measures at home that would automatically be in place in the office. So hackers are snooping around networks waiting for somebody to make a security mistake. These 10 tips will help you reduce the attack vectors for employees working at home.
1. Check For Work-From-Home Protocols
This is a good first place to start. If these are not already in place, you can use the following tips to establish them.
2. Find Out How Employees Connect To The Internet At Home
When the staff works in the office, there are security measures in place. At home, employees have several ways to connect to the internet:
- Their own Wi-Fi
- A neighbor’s Wi-Fi
- A building complex’s shared Wi-Fi
- Public Wi-Fi
Even passwords do not make these access points safe. One mistake while visiting an eCommerce, news, gaming site, etc., could wind up leading to breach of the company’s network and data. You can read more about the need to educate employees about the risks of unsecured public Wi-Fi in this blog.
3. Use Work Computers Only For Work
Accidentally attaching a document from a company-laptop’s hard drive can lead to untold damage. Even accessing personal websites, like social media pages, can open the company to very unfavorable consequences:
- Hijacked or leaked databases
- Stolen credentials
- Comprised file-sharing
- Costly theft of funds
If Dropbox could be hacked, it could happen to any of us. That brings us to passwords.
4. Seven Laws For Optimizing Passwords
We all visit many websites that require passwords. It can be tempting to make a password simple and easy to remember. This can spell trouble (with a 1 on the end for the required numerical character). Ideally, everybody should:
- Mix lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers, and characters
- Avoid using birthdays, anniversaries, or year of birth
- Make passwords at least 12 characters long
- Use a different password for each website
- Use a password manager. See PC Magazine’s best picks for free password managers.
- Change passwords frequently
- Use two-step authentication (2FA) or two-step verification (2FV). Read how 2FA can prevent cyber attacks in this blog.
5. Supervise Kids On The Computer
It is also worth noting the risks associated with letting our kids use our work computers for school. . .or just to keep them occupied. Unsupervised access could result in accidentally sharing or editing files.
6. Use Zoom Meetings With Caution
Zoom has been a popular and helpful communication tool to help businesses continue to conduct meetings even while participants are at home. Omri Hershkowitz offers these security tips:
- Make sure Zoom is updated, otherwise, users can be vulnerable.
- Use a password.
- If you are the video’s host, use the waiting room feature to screen who enters the meeting to prevent unwanted attendees who accidentally or maliciously got hold of the meeting link.
7. Install Or Update This Software
Firewalls monitor all traffic entering a computer network, help block Trojan horses, lower the risk of keyloggers monitoring you, and repel hackers from getting into the network.
Antivirus software will prevent phishing scams, block spammy sites, and of course, protect from viruses.
Malware blocks unwanted software made to steal personal information from installing
8. Offer Training and Reminders
We could all use up-to-date tips on:
- Spotting phishing emails
- Spotting and handling ransomware
- Checking email addresses before paying invoices. (In a future blog, we will discuss the danger of paying invoices without verifying the sender’s email. Subscribe to see it.)
9. Lock Your Computer
See #5 above.
10. Install a VPN That Goes Beyond Remote Access
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) encrypts all internet activity to prevent hackers from making sense of intercepted information. This encryption protects all data, emails, messages, passwords, financial information, and protects against DNS hijacking. A VPN also “tunnels” internet usage through a distant router to hide a user’s actual location.
Privatise is the VPN that was designed and developed specifically for MSPs to offer their business clients. Watch the video to see how Privatise helps MSPs protect businesses or schedule your own demo.
Times are challenging now. Let’s not make them more challenging due to cyber attacks. Let Privatise help.