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IT Security For Home Workers: Protect Your Business

May 16, 2023

We recently explored the key differences between IT security and cyber security. Both are absolutely necessary for keeping your business safe from cyber-attacks, which is why businesses need both dedicated IT security and cyber security teams.

But what if you work from home? How can you keep your data, your systems, and your business safe if you don’t have a committed in-house team to protect you?

In this post we’ll discuss some key principles of IT security for home workers. We’ll share guidance on how to protect your business online when working from home – whether you’re a freelancer running your own business, or you’re working remotely as an employee of a larger company.

If you have any questions about business insurance, or if you want to discuss whether cyber insurance is right for you, we have a team of experts ready to help. Call us on 0208 290 9080 or email us at cyber@anthonyjones.com.

IT Security Risks for Home Workers

Cyber-criminals are constantly on the lookout for new vulnerabilities to exploit. And when working from home, your data can be a lot more vulnerable than it would be if you were working on a secure network in an office.

Evidence shows that cyber-criminals are more likely to target smaller businesses over larger businesses. This is mainly because they know that small businesses lack the resources to implement adequate cyber-security measures. Also, they know that small businesses are more likely to be run from home offices, often by sole traders.

When you work from home, you won’t have a dedicated cyber-security team monitoring your network for threats. And if you don’t have a cyber-security team on your side, then you may not have policies and procedures in place for responding to cyber-attacks.

Cyber-criminals know this, and they’ll think nothing of exploiting your vulnerabilities. They think that, if they hit you with a ransomware attack, you’ll have no alternative but to pay them.

So it’s crucial that all home workers take cyber-security very seriously indeed.

Key IT Security Considerations For Managing Remote Workforces

If you manage a team of remote workers, there are a number of things you can do to reduce IT security risks.

Threat Analysis

Conduct thorough threat analyses for every worker. Assess their home network, and the possible avenues of attack. For example, cyber-criminals have been known to attack home routers and connected devices – such as smart TVs and smart fridges – as part of a wider Denial of Service (DoS) attack. The more “connected” the worker’s home, the more work you’ll have to do to secure it.

Provide Home Workers with Tech

Provide home workers with the tech they need to do their job, so that they won’t have to use their personal devices to work. This way, you’ll have full control over the security measures in place for every device. Also, there’ll be less chance of an employee taking any sensitive data into a public place when they use their devices as part of their personal life.

Cyber Security Training

Provide regular employee cyber-security training. Train employees on IT and data security, on safe internet browsing, and on identifying threats (such as spam emails).

Make Cyber Security Processes as Easy as Possible

Try and make your cyber-security processes as stress-free as possible. It’s important to secure your network. But if your home workers constantly have to deal with passwords, timeouts, authentication, and permissions, then they may seek workarounds and shortcuts which could compromise your integrity.

IT Security for Working Remotely

If you are a home worker, either as an employee of a larger company or a sole trader:

Learn About Different Types of Cyberattacks

Take the time to familiarise yourself with the latest cyber-security risks. Learn about the different types of cyberattacks, and aim to stay vigilant. For example, never click any links or download any attachments in emails unless you’re absolutely sure that they’re genuine.

Add Password Protection

Add password protection to all of your devices, including your router. Also protect any sensitive files on your systems with additional passwords. Don’t use the same password for multiple sites, devices, or files. Use a password manager if you struggle to remember your logins.

Install Antivirus Software

Get good antivirus software, and keep it updated. Also consider getting a VPN, which can offer a further level of protection through encrypting your internet activity.

Keep Sensitive Data at Home

Try to avoid taking any sensitive data out of your house – whether it’s stored on a laptop, a tablet, a USB drive, or other. That way, you’ll reduce the risk of loss or theft.

Add Device Trackers

Add trackers to all of your devices, so that if they ever are lost or stolen, you’ll be able to locate them. These can act as a strong deterrent for thieves.

Consider a Cyber Security Support Service

Consider hiring a cyber security support service. They can advise you on additional IT security measures you can take while helping you keep your home network as secure as possible.

Stay Safe From Cyber-Attacks When Working From Home

Whether you’re managing a remote workforce, or running your own business from home, specialist cyber insurance can act as an essential line of defence against cyber-attacks.

In the event of a data breach, cyber insurance will cover your business’s liability as well as your ability to manage the impact on both your systems and finances.

If you have any questions about business insurance, or if you want to discuss whether cyber insurance is right for you, we have a team of experts ready to help. Call us on 0208 290 9080 or email us at cyber@anthonyjones.com.


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020 8290 4560

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