While cyber security may not be your job you are still responsible for maintaining the safety of your company’s property and systems.   Not only are company’s resources at risk but so too any of your personal information and data stored on the computer or server.

 

Avoid Writing Passwords on paper

We are all guilty of this; with so many passwords to keep track of it is difficult to remember them all.  Sticky notes, diary pages and random pieces of paper are easily misplaced or seen by unwanted eyes and should be avoided at all costs.   There are multiple managers that allow you to access all of your passwords online wherever you are with only a single password to remember.  Be sure to select a respectable, well-known password manager that uses their strict security protocols themselves.

 

Avoid Using Public Wi-Fi

It is great being able to get work done out of the office, whether in transit or just for a change of scenery.  However accessing public networks can put you at risk.  One option is to make use of your company’s VPN (virtual private network).

Fraudsters often target companies as they may have the resources to spend on ransom to avoid lost data and productivity.  VPNs allow users to securely access a private network and then share data remotely through a public network.  Much like how firewalls protect your data on a PC, VPNs defend it online.

 

Never Use Unknown USB Drives

Have you ever found a USB drive and plugged it into your PC to see its contents or find its owner?  Unfortunately this can put your PC at risk as many external drives are infected with malware and/or viruses, which may damage or steal data.  The best option is to hand over any found USB devices to your I.T. department who will be better equipped to determine its safety.

 

Avoid Phishing Traps

A popular method for criminals is to access corporate networks through phishing attacks. No company, large or small is immune to phishing attacks or ransomware.  The best way to avoid an attack is to avoid links in emails or websites you are unsure of.  Fraudsters can disguise emails as being sent from a contact or websites as real websites you frequently visit.  Always be aware of potential red flags such as unusual content from a friend or a missing lock symbol in you browser.

 

Back Up Your Data

A responsible I.T. department should have a backup system in place but you yourself must ensure that you know the company guidelines and that your PC is being backed up as planned, for example, your PC may need to be connected to the company network overnight for a backup to take place.  Knowing the rules is especially important if you make use of a notebook. If you do fall victim to a cyber attack you can make use of multiple security resources and restore your system to a previous backup.