Working from home? Don’t let your guard slip on computer security
The newness of working from home has definitely worn off. But the need to stay vigilant against data breaches? That's as strong as ever.
To protect your personal data and your employer's, computer security experts remind you to:
- Take advantage of software updates and security patches as soon as they're available. Be aware that if you're still using Office 2010 software at home, Microsoft announced that support for it ended last October. Although the software still runs, you'll no longer receive security updates, bug fixes or phone or chat support.
- Change passwords frequently and ensure they're strong, including upper- and lowercase letters, numbers and characters.
- Use only secure Wi-Fi connections.
- Password-protect your computer and encrypt sensitive files so confidential company information won't be at risk if your laptop is lost or stolen.
- Opt for two-factor authentication whenever possible.
- Keep subscriptions for antivirus and malware-blocking services active.
- Use cloud backup if your employer makes it available; otherwise back up to a company-approved external hard drive.
- Use company rather than personal email for sensitive communication.
- Beware of phishing scams*, especially anything related to government checks or the COVID-19 vaccine.
If you're wondering about insurance coverage for business activities you do at home, give us a call. Business-use coverage can be complicated and varies case-by-case.
If you have concerns about your personal data or suspect you may have been a victim of identity fraud, we can help, too! As a PEMCO policyholder, you and family members living in your home are protected by PEMCO ID Smart™, an identity-fraud assistance service you receive at no extra charge. You can call 1-800-GO-PEMCO 24 hours a day to be connected with a fraud advocate.
PEMCO ID Smart™ is powered by CyberScout®, the nation's leader in identity management and fraud education.
*New Washington PEMCO homeowners policies sold since mid-November 2020 include limited coverage for victims of phishing. If you live in Washington, you'll automatically receive the additional coverage at no charge when your current homeowner policy renews. We plan to update the Oregon homeowners policy next.
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