We called it! That’s not bragging rights, it’s more of a concern than anything. Last year during the pandemic we saw an understandable and unprecedented influx of employees the world over being forced into home or remote working conditions. It grabbed our attention as we inevitably had our concerns for clients and others IT security as well as their mental health and wellbeing, so much so we wrote a few articles about it, those articles can be found here:

Working From Home Isn’t Necessarily Easy!

For many working from home it has been extremely difficult to say the least, not everyone has an additional room to work from, like the lack of human contact, or on the opposite side of the spectrum can deal with their children or family members 24/7. That said there are many millions of individuals globally who are either now forced to work from home due to the pandemic or cost cutting measures, those who want to work permanently from home as they prefer it, or would like a form of flexible working conditions introduced at their workplace, which might even become a law here in the UK as more employees have asked the UK government for the right to request flexible working conditions through their employer. Why you may ask, simply because in theory not always in practice for most it provides a better life to work balance, the one thing that most of us dislike about our jobs the most is not the job itself but the travelling to and from the office, I should know my last place of work took 3 hours on four different trains and a lot of walking to get to, and when there were delays I would easily lose 10 hours of my day just commuting to and from home and I’m obviously not alone, subsequently many employers have taken note and after seeing the benefits to their business and staffs wellbeing over the last year or so are now offering and accepting pay cuts in return so that their employees can continue to work from home, which is a win win situation as though the employer saves themselves some money the employee in many instances is also saving themselves some money even after taking the marginal pay cut due to spending far less if anything on their virtually non-existent commute as well as making their teas, coffees, lunches… and snacks at home as opposed to spending additional money at the local stores, though inevitably that’s not so good a deal the shops on the high street.

But as more of us turn to working from home on either a full time or part time basis are we actually prepared, and should you as a business owner or employee be doing more to better protect your IT infrastructure. Well the short answer to that question is a resounding YES!! You should have done a lot more, but obviously it’s still not too late! When we first brought this to everyone’s attention last year there were several things people were not doing that they really should have done to protect themselves even prior to the pandemic and more so now! We’ve been made aware in the press of the growth in cyber attacks and the increase in cybercriminal gangs going after loan workers and small to medium sized businesses, in fact they have made it their number one priority as big organisations are far and few between, many large organisations have in-house IT technicians constantly aiding in the protection against threats while the remaining SMEs which make up 99.3% of all businesses predominately don’t have this luxury and in the main shockingly do not have any protection in place, so it makes complete sense as to why smaller businesses are being targeted by cybercriminals but it also doesn’t make any sense to me as to why many of these things are not being dealt with, it might be a small additional cost to have IT security in place but it’s far cheaper than having to repair an infected system or network. But it’s not always the company that is at fault, the employee working from home should be doing their bit too. Surprisingly you would have thought that if you are working from home and therefore do not have to commute anywhere you’d have a bit more time on your hands to run a full systems security scan and update software to the latest version once a week, while making yourself an afternoon snack or cuppa, however almost 50% of the calls that we receive in relation to home working cyber attacks are due to the employee not keeping up to speed with their side of the security bargain. It therefore leads me to believe that people must just get a kick out of waiting and seeing what happens, I can’t think why else you’d choose to do it otherwise.

And from this month going forward into the fourth quarter of this year with furlough coming to and end here in the UK the prospex of millions more people sadly losing their jobs and setting up work from home instead is likely to increase significantly as will the increase in cyber attacks if people do not take this more seriously.

Add to this equation the current ongoing microchip/semiconductor crisis you really should consider getting your IT Security and home working IT measure in place, if a cybercriminal takes down your computers or networks then it could easily be curtains for you and your business. Don’t leave your home working IT by chance, why not give us a call today to discuss how we can help provide you with all that you need and at a competitive, cost effective price.

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