Just a little update from us 😊

We hope that by helping each other during this pandemic we can all strive to survive, with this in mind we would like to make you aware of a few things that the current situation has brought to light for the business community.

Unsurprisingly we have seen a huge rise in the number of people working from home, which in itself can come with a few problems, especially around privacy and security.

The ability to work from home has always been a useful tool for many business owners and staff alike. But with the new advice from the government for as many people to work from home as possible, it has put a huge strain on developing software and established vendors as well.

Even the mighty Microsoft has struggled in the last few weeks with capacity for its platforms such as Teams and Skype being put under heavier loads than expected.

One of the vendors that have come out on top of all of this has been Zoom. Previously a pretty good virtual meeting and chat software, they have seen a huge rise in the number of people using the platform as its popularity soared. Sadly, it is not all good news for the plucky team, as the privacy of user data and their security protocols have come under scrutiny and not lived up to the requirements, Zoom is working to improve as much as they can during this difficult time, this is a common occurrence with rapidly growing vendors. Despite this, its popularity has continued to grow. It will be very interesting to see how they manage the downturn in popularity once the quarantines and lockdowns are over and people start returning to work again.

So working from home should be nice and simple, right? Just plug in your laptop and away you go.  Well, there are a few things you should be aware of. Most households do not have separate internet lines for business and family, if you do then great, if not then you are most likely competing for bandwidth (the amount of internet you can get) with the kids watching Netflix or Disney Plus, your partner doing the online shopping, as well as all of your neighbours doing the same thing. What you might not be thinking of is how secure is my home network? Do the kid's devices all have anti-virus on them? Am I opening my business up to a minefield of cybercrime and data protection issues?

In most cases the answer to that is simply yes, most business owners are blissfully unaware of the risks when it comes to working from home. However, blissful ignorance is no excuse when it comes to data protection. You are still responsible for it no matter what.

So what can you do to stay safe, stick to the basics, check all of your devices for anti-virus, free anti-virus is not suitable for business use and should not be used under any circumstances, most vendors specifically state in their Ts & Cs that it is for personal use only, they do this for a reason, so get yourself something suitable! The next thing you might want to look at is altering the time that you work, if the kids are taking all the bandwidth during the day then spend time with them where possible and work in an evening. If this just isn’t an option and you have to work during the day then look at getting a VPN, protect your data as much as possible, check out my blog post on VPNs here

Remember to stay safe and if you need any help or advice please get in touch, Myself or a member of my team are always happy to offer help or advice where we can.

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