Working Remotely: How To Keep Your Data Safe

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There are many reasons why you might have decided that a remote working setup was the best for your business. Perhaps it was so that you could hire the best people, not just the people who were nearby. Perhaps it was to cut overheads. Maybe you wanted to improve your workers’ – and your own – work-life balance. No matter the reason, remote working is something that many business owners have found to be highly beneficial.

There are some negatives to remote working, however. Despite the chance for greater productivity, sometimes, employees can become distracted and miss deadlines. As well as this, they can feel out of the loop and no longer part of the business. Plus, there is the security issue to contend with; how can you keep your sensitive data safe when you are working remotely? It’s this point that this article will focus on today. Read on to find out more.

Public WIFI 

When your team is working remotely, and the individual members work from their own homes, they will connect to their secure WIFI systems. This is not a problem, assuming they are secure. However, what if someone wanted to work from a local park? What if they chose to go to a coffee shop to write a report? What if their child wanted to go swimming, so they took their laptop to the local pool to send an email while they waited? In these cases, the WIFI connection might not be a secure one; logging into public WIFI is a dangerous thing to do.

Public WIFI is an issue because it’s not secure, which means that cybercriminals can access the data being sent through it with ease. For example, suppose that data happens to be sensitive information relating to your business. In that case, you might find that hackers can access your network and steal information such as banking passwords and customer addresses or credit card numbers.

The best thing to do is not use public WIFI at all. If you are out and about, try to do your work and then wait until you get home again to send it wherever it needs to go. If you must use public WIFI, make sure you use specialist tools to prevent any issues. For example, GoAnywhere has ad-hoc secure mail for all of your organization’s needs, and you can utilize this to send files safely and securely.

Information Security Management 

Information security management can help keep your data safe when you are working remotely. Although complex, information security management is essentially a set of systems and procedures that, when combined, ensure that your risk of a cyberattack is minimized.

The first step in any information security management plan should be to ensure you have good antivirus software installed. You can also implement regular password changes and sweeps of your computing equipment to ensure nothing dangerous has accidentally been installed.

Keep Your Equipment Safe 

A stolen laptop or phone is annoying and highly inconvenient, but is it the end of the world? For those who don’t use their mobile devices to run their business or conduct their work, perhaps not. Insurance will help buy a new device, and they can start putting things together the way they like them. Often, they can download their photos and apps from the cloud, and it will soon be as though nothing untoward happened at all.

For those who do use their devices for work, it can be much worse than this, however. If your laptop or phone were to be stolen, you might be opening your company to cybercriminals who will be able to gain access to your device and, through that, gain access to your business network. Once that happens, they will have unfiltered access to everything, including your finances and your customers’ data.

This is why it’s so important to take care of your equipment. If you have to take it out of the house, make sure you have it with you at all times; don’t leave it in the trunk of your car, and certainly don’t leave it in full view. You never know what might happen, and it’s better to be safe than sorry. Ideally, you wouldn’t take it with you when you left the house, although you may well want your smartphone. However, even at home, things aren’t entirely safe – what would happen if you were broken into? For ultimate peace of mind, invest in a safe and put your items in there when you leave the house. In this way, they will remain much more secure.

Use Encryption 

Strong encryption is crucial when it comes to working remotely in a safe, secure manner. If you do have to use public WIFI, as mentioned above, good levels of encryption will help to make it a much safer process.

Not only that, but if your device were stolen or hacked into if your files are encrypted, they would be worthless to anyone but the person using the computer and anyone who has legitimate access to the files and thus has the encryption key. So as a good backup plan, encryption works well.

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