As partners in your innovation, we are making some remote working benefits with exponential security measures available to protect you from cyber-attacks. Considering the threat COVID-19 poses, an increasing number of people are choosing some form or the other of working remotely. This has brought about an increase in the number of reports we see about cyber attacks. If we don’t take the necessary measures to protect our data then we become cyberattack targets. Our team here at ITConnectUS is of the opinion that there will be some irreversible changes to our approach to working altogether.
Here is some guidance that we all internally share as an Innovation & Security Experts, on how to secure your/client data while you work outside of the office to minimize the risk of working remotely.
Beware of Phishing
- Cyber attackers are capitalizing on COVID-19 fears by impersonating governmental agencies, sharing fictitious supply invoices, and posing as charities. Interacting with these inconspicuous sources can leave you vulnerable to a phishing attack. Phishing is not the same as spam, they often disguise the phishing malware.
- Phishing is usually found most common in one’s emails. Hence it is advisable to take extra caution with every email or phone call you to receive soliciting action related to this health threat. Phishing is one of the most common types of cyberattacks that one can fall prey to.
- Sometimes these criminals take advantage of the communication barriers of working remotely and pose as a colleague. Phishing emails can also come directly to your email under the names of people you know. Your company and clients normally will only contact you via standard business channels, like email and portal notifications.
Use Secure Networks
If you’re working from home, there are some things you can do to enhance the security of your network and ensure the safety of the data of your remote workforce.
- Change the default administrator password on your router to one that is both strong and unique. Cyber attackers are well equipped with the tools to guess basic passwords that have no element of randomness to them.
- How secure a network can one have? The answer is often in ensuring the basic precautions. Like enabling WPA2 or WPA3 on your router to encrypt your online activity, encryptions are the first line of defense against any kind of cyber attack you might be vulnerable to.
- Create a strong network password and only share it with people you trust, the smaller the group, the better. This is one of the first steps in following secure network protocols.
- When connecting to a new network, select “do not allow my computer to be discoverable by other devices on the network” to turn off network discovery and folder sharing.
- If you’re working from a public location, if you can, use your smartphone as a hotspot to connect to the internet. If you must use a public network, confirm with the establishment the network is genuine before connecting and only navigate to sites that begin with “https” indicating an encrypted connection. There are a few avoidable loopholes on the internet that make you vulnerable to cyber attacks, avoiding these is all you need to do.
Use Secure Devices & Solutions
- Enable automatic updates on all of your internet-connected devices to protect against vulnerabilities that could spread through your network. This paired with a regular check on the status of your secure network and changing your network security key keeps you safe from phishing and cyber-attacks.
- Secure network management often involves no plugins and most Operating Systems are made keeping in mind the importance of secure networks. Install the latest operating system updates on personal computers and run up-to-date security software, like Windows Defender.
- Download and run Malware bytes to clean an infected personal computer. An infected computer puts your network at risk of cyberattacks. When trying to create a secure home network it becomes essential to install antiviruses in addition to Windows Defender.
- Work in a Secure Environment where you trust all those using that network.
- Understand the sensitivity of the information you work with and protect it appropriately with appropriate security measures. One can never be too cautious, talking to a security consultant often helps take the weight off your chest.
- Always be aware of your surroundings. Use a privacy screen if you have one, always lock your screen when you step away.
- Be mindful of where and how you take conference calls.
- Don’t leave printed materials in the open and, if possible, shred before disposing of them.
- Physically secure unattended devices in a locked drawer or room, or with a cable lock. If you have a desktop computer, use good judgment regarding the placement of the desktop within your home and secure it to the best of your ability.
We are helping all of our Customers with Technology & providing supervised solutions to emerge out of this situation without severe affliction. Phishing and cyber attacks are a very real threat that can’t be overlooked at this point. But paranoia is not the answer, take the necessary steps to create a secure network and protect your data and you will be fine. This Pandemic has made us come together to rally our greatest strength, the human spirit, through all of this, we are re-emphasizing what is most important ‘Our Customers, Our Team Members & Our Communities.’
‘Do-not let the COVID-19 crisis slow down your Research & Innovations.’
We are committed to the Health and Safety of your family care workers and you.
Stay Inside & Stay Safe.