Since technological tools make it not only possible but also affordable to work from home, increasing numbers of people are doing so. Being able to work from home is great for people who need quiet to concentrate, flexible working hours and locations and/or the ability to look after children, elderly parents or someone who is unwell or disabled. Having a home office is also beneficial if you want to spend less time commuting each week or to escape the never-ending barrage of meeting requests that might come your way.

However, when working from home, you usually don’t have any on-site tech gurus who can set things up for you or do some troubleshooting if issues arise with your devices, connections or access to information. As such, it’s important to do what you can to set things up in an effective manner and reduce the likelihood of problems down the track.

Tips for Ensuring Your Home Office Is Secure

In particular, you must take steps to keep hackers at bay, so you don’t lose any information, get locked out of your network, have systems crash or face other negative consequences. Read on for tips you can follow to ensure your home office setup is secure today.

Don’t Let Other Family Members Use Your Work Computer(s)

One simple thing you can do to reduce the risk of security issues with your workspace is to keep your computer(s) just for your own use. That is, don’t let other family members — children in particular — use your business devices. Other people could make unwise decisions when on your computer and leave you more vulnerable. For example, they might open emails and/or attachments from fraudsters or click on fraudulent links.

Also read, The 27 Most Annoying Things Co-workers Do, As Told In Tweets

Password Protect Systems

It’s something that is talked about a lot, but many people still don’t do it: properly password-protect systems. Millions of people still use worthless codes such as “password,” “admin” or the numbers “123456,” even though these are the first things hackers input when trying to break into networks. Avoid being a statistic by using hard-to-crack codes that will deter cybercriminals from trying to get into your information.

Adequate passwords have a minimum of 12 characters and are made up of a combination of letters (upper-case and lower-case), symbols and numbers. Don’t base your codes around any information that hackers can find publicly, which includes things like pet or children’s names, addresses, lucky numbers, birth dates and the like.

When it comes to passwords, you also need to protect your Wi-Fi. People in the area should not be able to use your internet; instead make sure it’s protected with a proper password.

Use Firewalls

Your information can also be kept more secure by the addition of firewalls on your computers. These are helpful because they add another line of defense for cybercriminals to work around. In particular, firewalls help filter threats from credible information that comes in when you’re using the internet.

Firewalls

You likely won’t have to spend money on a firewall as most computers come with one pre-installed. However, do make sure to check the settings on your device, as you may need to activate the firewall for it to do its job.

Install Security Software

Invest money in quality antispam, antispyware, antimalware and antivirus security from a trusted provider. There are plenty of options on the market that will cover you against a wide variety of threats and help to stop digital thieves in their tracks.

When choosing a product, look for something that includes ransomware protection, as this is a growing threat, as well as a tool that will block harmful websites and emails, keep your information safe online, help protect you from identity theft, maintain user privacy, block phishing emails and protect against applications designed specifically to steal data from computers.

Also read, HOW TO INCREASE PRODUCTIVITY AT WORK

Update Software on a Regular Basis

One other step to take is to update all of your computer systems (such as browsers, operating systems, apps, plugins and the like) as well as security software and firewalls on a regular basis. Software developers are always on the lookout for security gaps that need to be plugged and release new versions of their products each time they address any of these potential issues. As such, you must be running the latest version of everything to be comprehensively protected. Set up automatic updates so you never have to worry about remembering to run updates manually.