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Working from home - staying safe

If you are working from home or enabling your employees to work from home during the current Coronavirus situation, it is important for those doing so to remain vigilant online to protect your organisation’s privacy and data. Here is some comprehensive, impartial and practical advice on working from home safely from www.getsafeonline.org 

  • Ensure that cloud-based and collaborative services such as file sharing and conferencing are secured with strong passwords and two-factor authentication. 
  • Set strong passwords for new accounts or remote access and impose rules on not sharing passwords, using a password manager and not using passwords for more than one account. For information on strong passwords, visit: www.getsafeonline.org/online-safety-and-security/password-protocol-and-control
  • If employees need access to your company’s network, files and email, set them up a virtual private network (VPN). Beforehand, read reviews for VPN security levels. Existing VPNs should be fully patched. 
  • Emphasise the importance of protecting company-issued devices in case of loss, theft or damage. Ensure they can be locked down in the event of a loss or theft. Devices should be kept out of harm’s way, for example, not left in a car or away from visitors to your home. 
  • Employees should ensure that their broadband routers are secured to avoid unwanted intrusion. Avoid using Wi-Fi hotspots whilst doing anything confidential. 
  • If work conversations are confidential, make sure they are out of earshot of any smart speakers that may be in the home. 
  • Maintain your normal checks and controls, including for data breaches, which could be more likely under the current conditions. It may be worth notifying your company insurance provider that employees are working from home.
  • Report actual or attempted fraud immediately to Action Fraud or by calling 0300 123 2040.
  • Report any data breaches which may compromise individual's rights and freedoms to the Information Commisioner's Office (ICO)  according to your company’s data protection and privacy policy. 

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