Whether one is a business owner, new to working from home, an employee, or a freelancer, working from home presents several unique challenges. While the domestic setting might take some initial adjustment, there is one particular threat to be aware of: a lack of digital protection. Many home workers will neglect to consider their devices’ security levels, and for good reason. Those who are used to an office setting will be blissfully unaware of the security measures taken by IT teams; ignorance about cybersecurity tech at the office typically means everything is working correctly. However, those working without adequate levels of protection are leaving themselves open to some potentially devastating consequences.
Why Working From Home Increases the Risk of Cybercrime
The standard digitally equipped office will offer its employees a level of cyber protection. This is likely to include firewalls, blacklisted IP addresses, and encrypted Wi-Fi networks. Internal IT teams will conduct their own assessment of what protection is needed based on the type of work and the company’s particular industry. However, when it comes to working from home, most individuals wouldn’t know where to start with their own cybersecurity assessment. The list below outlines some of the most common attacks used by cybercriminals on individuals who work from home without proper protection.
Phishing, which can come in the form of an email, a text message, or a direct message, is a form of cyberattack that is becoming much more common. Rates have risen by600% in the past few months. A phishing email is a fraudulent attempt to acquire sensitive information from its recipient; this could be usernames, passwords, or credit card details. Phishing emails are also used as part of ransomware attacks, where a hacker obtains an individual’s data then demands payment for its return. Phishing emails work by tricking the recipient into believing the email comes from a trusted source, which encourages them to click on a link, leading to the installation of malware or theft of sensitive data. The consequences of phishing can vary: identity fraud, loss of funds, and repeated and targeted attacks are all possible. The best forms of protection against phishing are two-fold. Installing an appropriate security software is crucial for protecting yourself against all attacks:Check Point software UK comes highly recommended by security professionals. Secondly, increased awareness, being vigilant for fraudulent emails, noticing when a message seems“off,”and avoiding clicking on suspicious links are all habits you need to get into.
Poor Password Practices
Many companies have their own IT guidelines, but conscientious password usage is on everyone’s list. When most people use their personal devices, they may only have a handful of passwords; some they might have had for years. Using simple passwords for multiple logins leaves one very vulnerable to dictionary or brute-force attacks. Having a complex password, one that is more than 10 characters with a mix of cases, digits, and symbols, and changing this regularly will help prevent such attacks.
Appropriate Web Uses
A recent survey found that of the 1,550 respondents who were working from home, the most common form of cyberattack came from a malicious web link. Protecting yourself against this involves using proper security systems, being vigilant while online,and using firewalls.
While it is clear that working from home leaves an individual more open to cybersecurity risks, this does not have to be the case when proper protection and vigilant usage is applied.