How to protect your work computer properly

How to protect your work computer properly


Every year, thousands of companies face the threat of cybercrime, and many incidents lead to significant losses. However, one of the repetitive scenarios is that companies do not prepare for such attacks in time. Instead, their cybersecurity strategies lack consistency, and some employees might not know them.

Thus, companies cannot put everything on the IT professionals’ shoulders. It implies that every employee should do their part in keeping the system safe. Cybercrime and safety should be a part of everyday conversation. 

Additionally, as an employee, you can take matters into your own hands and do your best even without clear-cut instructions from your employer. Let’s see how. 

Be careful of your password

Your password is the gateway to your device and accounts. Making it difficult to crack is your goal. Here are the main recommendations you should consider:

Create a strong password

The password should not be as generic as ‘1234’ or ‘password,’ also, it should not contain any of your sensitive data. That includes your birth date, phone number, or first pet’s name.

Here is a quick rundown of how you should create your passwords:

  • 12 characters should be the minimum length of the password.
  • You need to include both lower- and upper-case letters.
  • Insert numbers and special characters.
  • Store all unique passwords in password managers for easy and secure access.

Multi-step authentication

Another critical factor is the two-step verification. Even if a cybercriminal gets hold of your password, it needs to be verified by you. After entering the password, a message is sent to your registered phone number or email id containing an OTP (One-Time Password). Without this unique combination, a person can’t log in.

Use different passwords

Never use the same password on all your accounts. It is an unfortunate way of becoming vulnerable to many attacks. If your selected password leaks, malicious individuals can take over all accounts. 

Don’t use your work computer for personal things 

Many people have taken remote jobs ever since the pandemic hit. Thus, many work-related tasks can be conducted via personal devices.  

As the internet is unsafe, work and personal activities should be separate. If your company follows a BYOD policy, it should be reconsidered. After all, controlling the apps employees install is impossible. Additionally, companies cannot check whether people update their systems. With company-issued devices, employers can use remote monitoring software. However, it is also a questionable decision. 

Be careful of what you click on 

It brings us to the next factor: think twice before clicking. There are several ways cybercriminals can enter your system using your consent. One of the popular ways is phishing, and it can happen in various environments. 

Usually, these emails contain messages like “Click here to receive $1000 directly in your account.” However, these emails can also look very professional, like your bank sends them. Moreover, messages raising concern about loans or credit scores can grab anyone’s attention. Thus, it is best to confirm the source before proceeding.

But, if you are concerned about receiving spam messages all the time, it is best to create a different email apart from your personal and work email. Now, you can use this email to anyone who is not your family, friends, or colleague. In this way, all the unnecessary newsletters and potentially dangerous emails will go to this email. And you can completely delete its contents in case of suspicious activities.

Always use a VPN

Working from a cafe can be a breath of fresh air if you work from home. However, you are safe only if you enable a VPN for PC before connecting to an unknown network. Hotspots at coffee places or other public locations have many dangers. 

Therefore, employees need a Virtual Private Network to encrypt the traffic and data they exchange. After all, you do not want users connected to the same Wi-Fi to snoop on your company’s confidential information. 

Do a deep clean up

If your computer is not organized, it is very easy for malware to hide in a mess. Thus, it is crucial to delete all the files, applications, and browser extensions that are no longer in use. It will speed up your work computer and make it easier for you to search for any data.

You can run the Disk Clean Up program by accessing it on the control panel to aid you with this process. It will scan your entire device and delete temporary files.

Conclusion

The work can never stop, and so neither should your safety measures. Do not skip your antivirus updates to stay away from malware, trojan, or ransomware. But the ultimate safety lies in creating a backup for your data. You can use a hard drive or cloud storage option to make a duplicate copy of all the sensitive information. In this way, there is no loss, even if things go sideways.