When employees began working from home, businesses were suddenly being operated from bedrooms, kitchen tables and home offices. This in itself brought significant challenges as employees adapted to this new way of work. One such challenge is the discrepancy in security provisions in a private home versus internally in an office space.
In September 2020, Microsoft carried out a survey on 500 employees and 200 business decision-makers. Of those surveyed, 45% said that employers had asked them to use their personal devices to work. This could potentially cause serious security concerns for a business. If a shared network is being utilised, the company’s information could be compromised. Similarly, if employees save down sensitive data to a desktop there is a risk of this information being viewed or misused.
The removal of desktops and laptops from worksites means that confidential information and device security is now at a higher risk of being compromised. While this is a serious concern for businesses, there are ways in which these risks can be mitigated.
Keep your devices separate
Where possible, the device you work on should solely be used for business purposes. If multiple users have access to a device for home-schooling, streaming services, shopping etc., there is the potential for confidential data to be mishandled, lost or corrupted.
If a device must be shared among family members, ensure that separate user profiles are set up for each member. Never plug any unknown storage device into your home or work PC and never share storage devices at home.
Back up your data
To prevent loss of key information, make sure regular data back-ups are scheduled. There are many different back-up options but if data resides locally on a PC make sure it is backed up to a cloud-based back-up solution. You can contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about our cloud solutions.
Protect against malware
Keep your malware protection software active and up-to-date to mitigate against risks. Avoid emails that appear suspicious and, if received, flag them immediately with your IT support.
Use some form of content filtering for internet surfing. Not only does this restrict harmful content for kids but it also restricts the downloading of malware to devices. Open DNS is a great free tool or alternatively, consider a business-grade firewall/router with the content filtering capability built-in.
Change network settings
If you are both working from home and have a child home-schooling, use separate Wi-Fi networks where possible. Change your Wi-Fi password regularly to ensure that the network is not being accessed by anyone outside of your home.
Where a standard broadband router is in use, make sure the router is set up correctly with Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 encryption (WPA2) with a strong Key or Password. Choose a minimum of 8 characters consisting of upper, lower, special cases and numbers.
Established in 1996, Radius Technologies is trusted by progressive SMEs to deliver world-class Cloud, IT Solutions, IT and Data Security, and Telecoms systems. Radius Technologies offer both onsite and remote technical support from their offices in Dublin, Cork, and Waterford.
Our service support systems are certified by ISO: 9001 (Quality Management) and ISO:27001 (Information Security) certification. Radius Technologies are proudly a Microsoft Gold Partner, Cisco Premier Partner, HP Preferred Partner, Synology Partner, Eset Security Partner, Yealink Reseller and a Panasonic Business Phone System supplier.
Kevin O’Regan is the Owner and Director of Radius Technologies Cork. With 15 years’ experience in the electronics manufacturing sector, for the last 20 years, Kevin has worked in the IT and Technology sector. Primarily partnering with Irish SME owners, Kevin utilises the latest technology to enable real commercial opportunities for customers.