Top 5 tips for securely working from home

As working from home becomes more common for tech workers, ensuring proper security measures is important. Tom Merritt offers five security tips for employees working from home.

Maybe you like working from home, or maybe you're forced into it but, either way, you don't want to be the security vulnerability that brings the house down. Your IT department is on it, but there are some things you can do, too. Here are five tips for securely working from home.

  1. Use the devices your company gave you. Most workplace devices have most of the security precautions you need in place--if you can just stick to those, you'll be a lot more secure. Oh, and don't let people borrow these.
  2. Passwords and second factors. All your devices and accounts, work or personal, should have them if possible. Use a password manager so those passwords can be long and complex. Get a YubiKey for that second factor where you can or an app like Authy or at the very least (if it's all that's offered) SMS. But turn on that second factor.
  3. Encrypt. Your drive and your connection. If for some reason you don't have your drive encrypted, do that--now. And use a VPN, even at home because your family's devices may not be 100% secure. If your workplace doesn't provide VPN, tell them they really should, then pay for a well-reviewed VPN that has a no login policy.
  4. Lock down your browser. Before you start working on sensitive work matters, strip down your extensions to only the ones you absolutely need and are certain you can trust. And look into well-reviewed trustworthy extensions that protect security.
  5. Keep your devices safe. Lock your doors, don't leave devices in your car, and turn on any "find my device" features.

Security is always a game of getting as close to a zero chance of a breach as possible, and these practices should help.

Subscribe to TechRepublic Top 5 on YouTube for all the latest tech advice for business pros from Tom Merritt.

Also see

Freelancer with mug using laptop near dog

Image: iStockphoto/Niyaz_Tavkaev