Five ways to protect your home network and devices

Pandemic has changed our lives to the core. Be it our vacations or work desks; everything has evolved since the outbreak of COVID-19. And with changing lives, cyberattacks aiming the remote workers have been on the rise. From phishing campaigns to credentials thefts to exploiting the chaos caused by the pandemic through malicious COVID-themes domain names, cybercriminals come up with creative ways to attack remote workers.

For such reasons, it has become essential to give our home network and devices maximum protection that we can;

Secure your computer

The primary way to start practicing protection is by securing our actual devices like tablets, computers, and phones. These devices are all prone to malicious activities and infections via the internet or from different free apps but still cost you a lot in terms of your data.

It is better to install good antivirus software like Windows Defender or Avast for your device protection that ranges good in price and offers you free trials. There is no such shortage of good products that independent and reliable professionals review.

Moreover, along with installing a good antivirus program, it is better to download apps from official sources only like Apple’s App Store, Google Play, or its website.

Or else downloading from other sources may get you a modified version of the app with some additional features such as spying on you and your activities, popping your screen with ads, mining cryptocurrencies at your expense, and even getting hold of your bank account details.

Secure your Wi-Fi

When you get internet connectivity for your home, the provider installs its own combination of router/modem, names your home network, and setups a password on its own. If you haven’t changed your router’s name or changed its password, now is the time to do.

This is because mostly the routers have default passwords and usernames known as admin/password or admin/admin. Through a simple Google search for your router model, anyone can access the default credentials and can rename your network, set a new password, and will be able to reconfigure any available option.

While you still have the control, make sure to update your router’s firmware.

Secure smart devices / Internet of Things

We often connect IoT devices to our home network; instead of connecting them to the home network, it is better to hook them up with your guest network and change the default passwords. Now you must be wondering why do we have to change the password.

The majority of the IoT devices have default passwords, which can be found through a simple Google search; look for it if you don’t believe it, and then work on changing yours. This issue is a significant concern because many criminals have affected devices and have added them to botnets at an increasing rate.

Use a VPN

A Virtual Private Network or a VPN like ExpressVPN maintains a private, encrypted connection over the internet from your device like your laptop or computer to a private or public network. This encrypted connection makes sure that your IP address, i.e., your identity and data, is transmitted and secured from cyber criminals or any other unauthorized individuals when you plan to work remotely.

Turn on wireless network encryption.

There are various levels of security on your router that categorize the type of encryption protocol used for the wireless connection. The encryption protocol encrypts any kind of information or data you send or receive over your wireless network. Some devices still prefer using an older protocol known as WEP or even no protocol at all. This enables anyone in the range of the network to access any device on that same network.

If you are not encouraged to change the protocol when your router is being set, make sure you change it later to a WPA or WPA2 protocol. If any unauthorized individual plans to access your wireless network, they will be asked to enter a password to connect. Without entering the password, any unauthorized individuals cannot connect.

Therefore, these are some of the best practices through which you can protect your home-based devices and computer. Moreover, you have to back up your systems and data and save that sensitive data with a proper security solution.

Lastly, to secure your system from cyberattacks, like viruses, malware, and ransomware, you should install security software like VPN service as security software is not a good-to-have option but a primary requirement.

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