secure work from home

Rijul Mandlekar, Cybersecurity Engineer 

COVID-19 has upturned many of our lives over the past several months. As companies deal with a swift transition to work-from-home, devices are suddenly being introduced to environments that are traditionally unsecured. That’s not to say home networks are unsafe – with a few simple steps, you can ensure both your work and personal devices are appropriately protected. Proper cyber hygiene protects both your company and your employees’ personal information. In that spirit, here are a few tips to keep your workforce engaged in cybersecurity from home.  

Strong Mobile Passwords and Authentication 

  • On mobile devices, ensure you have set the highest form of security for accessing your device, be it facial recognition, a complex password, or even Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA). Our phones are our lives, and they can contain banking information, mobile wallets, social media logins, and other credentials to hundreds of our accounts. 
  • Be sure to keep pace with trends in technology. Learn the limitations of your access control choices. Facial recognition is a broad term and means different things across vendors. Samsung’s Galaxy S10, for example, can reportedly be fooled by a photo. Apple’s FaceID, on the other hand, incorporates Liveness Detection to determine whether or not the image in the camera is a real person. 

Secure Wireless Access 

  • At minimum, WiFi should be protected with a strong password. For true peace of mind, use secured WPA2 connections. WPA2 is a standard for communicating over WiFi that provides enhanced communication security for all your devices. New routers ship with this as the default setting, but to be sure, log in to your router using its instruction booklet and make sure you’re up-to-spec. Doing this can help prevent bad guys from joining your network and scanning your devices, keeping your devices’ digital footprint away from prying eyes.  

Safe Behavior 

  • Changing online behavior is the best and most long-term step to maintaining secure devices. Visit only trustworthy websites and new sources to avoid interacting with malicious code and scripts. We’ve seen popular apps like GPS fitness trackers, or more recently TikTok, come under fire for unsecure data practices. Limit the number of apps you download and their allowed privileges to prevent inadvertently sharing sensitive details about your life with the world. 

Extending this behavior across your work devices to your personal devices ensures a protective barrier between the dangers of the internet and you and your family, as well as coworkers and friends! 

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