Protect your home office from cyber crime

According to a new report from FlexJobs, approximately 3.9 million US employees work from home at least half of the time. This equates to almost 3% of the US workforce.

A home office is usually the highest priority for the household’s Internet access, so the router, printer, desktop, and any other network aspects are often located there.

Home offices are a target for cyber attacks

The home office is a target for cyber criminals because they know that users and small businesses tend not to commit large budgets or time to cybersecurity.

Financial loss from cyber crime in the US exceeded $1.3 billion in 2016 (FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), so home workers should be vigilant and understand how they can protect themselves.

Keeping your home network secure

The home network can connect all the devices in the home, including personal computing devices, smartphones, and printers.

It is an invaluable resource that connects the home to its residents, whether they are in the house or away.

Managing your home network is critical to your personal digital security. If security is not managed effectively, it can be the single point of failure for those resources.

December’s book of the month, Security in the Digital World, outlines five basic requirements for protecting the home office:

  1. Remove unnecessary applications and services from the device when they aren’t needed (e.g. a webcam)
  2. Set up automatic updates and patches
  3. Install anti-malware and antivirus software
  4. Change any default passwords and set user permissions appropriately
  5. Install web security tools and use trusted online services such as email

Essential guidance to protect your home office

There is no minimum or maximum set for how much security makes you secure. The best approach is to apply as much security guidance as possible set out in Security in the Digital World.

This must-have guide features simple explanations, examples, and advice to help you be security-aware online in the digital age.

Learn how to:

  • Keep your information secure
  • Put the necessary controls on your home network to protect your family from cyber crime
  • Prevent identity theft when shopping online or using contactless payment
  • Keep your children safe when using the Internet

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