Thursday, 27 August 2015

Guest post- Working Remotely: How to Keep Your Connection Secure


We love sharing tips on working from home efficiently and ensuring that your information is secure and your connection safe is an important consideration if you are going to work from home. Our guest blogger, Cassie, from securethoughts.com shares some excellent tips on keeping your connection secure. 

Cassie is a technology enthusiast who enjoys sharing her knowledge of internet security and work at home tips. 

Working Remotely: How to Keep Your Connection Secure

I would like to thank Jozi WAHM for sharing this article with her wonderful readers. I’ve found the blog to be a fun read filled with all sorts of different tips and anecdotes that are useful to know about. In particular I’d like to recommend this post about actually getting work done at home.

If you get to work from home, there are a lot of benefits, such as not having a commute and working in a comfortable environment, but you also have to contend with the added responsibilities. Chances you are working from a personal device and a home connection, and so it is your job to make sure that everything related to your job is safe; otherwise, you could suffer the consequences of a company data breach.



Here are a few ways you can help keep your connection secure: 

Be Conservative with Your Network Information:

Your home network information is how people get into your network, for good or for ill. Chances are that a skilled hacker with that information can go in from a street or two away and steal many of the files you use for work with the right equipment, depending on how you have things set up for sharing on your home network. If that data gets out there, it is hard to get it wiped clean from the internet where such data is often sold to the highest bidder.

You don’t need to tell everyone who walks into your house your network name and password. They can get by without internet for a while and likely have a data plan anyway. They might not be malicious, but they are out of your control and thus a potential security risk if they don’t take as much care as you do (which is a distinct possibility). If they persist, explain your situation, and if they do not understand, ask them to leave and meet them elsewhere in the future. Your job and home security isn’t worth the company of such a rude person.

Use a VPN on All of Your Devices


If you work remotely, that doesn’t mean you are working from home. There is a great likelihood that you meet clients or customers in public settings such as coffee houses or restaurants. These places have public networks, which can be useful but are also incredibly risky to use, as hackers can easily intercept data over an unprotected network. This data could include a great deal of work information, not to mention your financial data, to make you the victim of an identity thief.

The best defense you have against such a threat is called a Virtual Private Network (VPN). What a VPN does is use an encrypted connection to make your computer connect to an offsite secure server which will process your requests for you. This encrypted connection allows you to safely browse the internet on any network without having to worry about anyone looking in. It also has the added benefit of being a service that will mask your IP address, so that you can access regionally restricted content and websites that are censored by certain governments. You will also be able to avoid government surveillance in many of the more restrictive countries out there, which may be vital to certain professions that make their home their office.

You should know that they are great for home use for the same privacy and security benefits, and that using one that is well-reviewed will put your mind at ease when it comes to your data security.

Take a Look at Your Old Files and Connections

Sometimes it is not an attack on our connection or computer that can lead to problems. Sometimes it is just an oversight on your part because something was left around or a connection not closed on your computer. Your dropbox folders should be dealt with whenever a contract ends, and the best thing that you can do is to have a personal policy to clear out or store away any old files that might have important information on them. If they might be useful or important in the future, place them on a flash drive that is stored away from anything with an internet connection.

Now might also be a good time to make a clean cut and change all of your passwords and security question answers. Go through all of your different cloud services or similar sharing software and cut old connections. The goal is to cut off past problems and security holes so you can focus on a secure future.


 

Thank you for reading, and the best of luck to you with you work regardless of where you work.