Over the past few weeks, we have covered how workers can maximize their security when working remotely. From a business owner’s perspective, an informed and aware staff greatly reduces the chance of a costly breach. From an employee perspective, network security and best practices ensure little time is wasted on disaster mitigation and recovery.
We will no doubt be revisiting remote work security down the road. For now, however, we are going to close out this series with some key take-home ideas for workers. Here are ways you can keep your security habits on track:
Keep work and home separate
The golden rule of remote work is to draw a clean line between work and life. Not only will this help with balancing the two lives, but it will keep your data secure.
Dedicate a place within your living area to work. Keep your personal and work devices separate and avoid using work emails for personal reasons.
By staying disciplined about this separation, you will more easily remain aware of your workplace’s security.
Pack it away
Once your workday ends, pack your devices away. Your “clock out” time will depend on your role within the workplace. However, avoid situations where your work devices are neglected yet easily accessible to passers-by.
If a task can not wait for the next workday, dedicate some time to seeing it through. This approach will have the added benefit of giving your tasks your undivided attention.
Avoid software safaris
There are countless software tools available to professionals nowadays. While you may be tempted to avail yourself of any tool, run any new software or web-based solutions by your supervisor and IT administrator.
Always be aware of how a new tool handles your data. While you may use a web-based file converter and forget about it soon after, your data may not be so easily disregarded by third parties.
Verify before sharing
Know what sensitive data you have and with whom you may share it. Do not let the pressure of pleasing superiors make you an easy mark for phishing scams. One of the most powerful tools in an attacker’s arsenal is human psychology.
If you get an unusual request for information, or if the information is particularly sensitive, take extra steps to verify the identity of the requester.
Play it by the book
Know what your workplace’s cybersecurity policies and best practices are. When you are familiar with them, follow them. If you find anything unclear or absent in your workplace’s practices, submit your feedback through the appropriate channels.
Most of all, do not sacrifice security for expedience. A minor inconvenience pales in comparison to a data breach.
Good cybersecurity practices boil down to keeping the right habits. What we have laid out over the past few weeks may seem easy to follow at first. The challenge is maintaining these principles for the long term.
As many of us are still working remotely, it can get easy to blur the lines between work and home. This challenge is made more daunting by instant communication, which can pull you into or out of your work life in an instant.
Keep focused, keep professional, and keep cybersecurity on your mind.