COVID-19 has really made a major impact in the cyber security world. Many of us are now working from home, whether we are making video conference calls, uploading documents and conducting daily business online. While most workers are used to working at an office environment under carefully crafted IT systems, it is impossible to quantify the number of permutations of home internet setups. To help you reduce the security risks you may be taking while working from home, here are some tips from experts on steps you can take to fortify your digital workspace.
Update your network security
While you should really do this on a regular basis, making sure your devices are completely up to date with the most recent security patches and upgrades can make a huge difference in securing your data. Things like your operating system, antivirus and antimalware programs, and your router are just some of the things you should immediately shore up and protect since those are generally your first and last defense against external threats.
Avoid phishing emails
As previously mentioned, there are scammers out there using COVID-19 crisis as a smokescreen for their nefarious attempts at your sensitive data. Phishing emails are a classic way they do that. In most cases, these emails may look like a business offer, a great deal, or even an important message from your boss, but in every instance, there’s a link it says you must click. DO NOT CLICK IT UNLESS YOU KNOW WHO SENT THE LINK. Those links usually lead to a required download that installs malware onto your systems, immediately compromising it in the process. Be on the lookout for odd email addresses, poor grammar or generic greetings that don’t match the personality of the individual sending the emails, and whatever you do – do not provide any personal information.
Enable multifactor authentication.
Passwords can be broken. It’s just a matter of fact that humans have been codebreaking for as long as we’ve been making codes, so it only makes sense that there are programs out there now that can crack most passwords in moments. While practicing good password etiquette is a great first step, two-factor authentication adds as additional layer of protection, since it requires additional action beyond entering a password.
Set up remote access
It may be significantly more difficult to do this without the physical devices in front of you or your IT department, but companies should do everything they can to establish remote access protocols. This may be particularly difficult to enact, however, as you’ll likely need to access the onsite devices to issue multifactor authentication token.
The coronavirus outbreak has disrupted a lot of live, and with people working in close proximity to their families, things can get hectic. Now is an important time to remind employees that while they work remotely, they have to maintain the same level of professionalism when it comes to secure and sensitive data as they do in the office. That includes reminding people that personal email is not to be used in an official capacity and that any physical documents kept at home must either be disposed of properly with a shedder or set aside to be shredder or set aside to be shredded later.
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