Remote Workers Using Home Computers. What you Need to Know Today!

During emergencies, it is highly likely that at least some employees will need to use their home computers instead of company issued computers for remote access to email or other data.

While it would be best that employees use managed computers that have been provided by the business with security and management software provided by their IT department or Managed IT Services Provider, we know this may not always be possible.

We asked our security team what precautions businesses and employees should take when using a home computer for business-related work, and below is what we are advising:

Businesses Must

  1. Enable MFA for remote access and any other web-based applications, if possible.
  2. Ensure that employees do have a dedicated computer for remote access or work from home.  This computer must have a current operating system which is supported by Microsoft such as Windows 10.  If they are using a Mac it should be Mojave 10.14 or later.
  3. During emergencies, hackers and criminals work extra hard to take advantage of isolated computer users.  We recommend that our clients read and distribute Security Alerts when they are sent from This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or posted to our blog or social media platforms.
    www.hilltopconsultants.com/blog
    https://www.facebook.com/hilltopconsultantsinc/?ref=bookmarks
    https://www.linkedin.com/company/hilltop-consultants/?viewAsMember=true
  4. If your business has not implemented Acceptable Use or Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies, they should be implemented as soon as possible.  Contact your vCIO for assistance with this.

Employees Using Their Home Computers Must

  1. Secure your wireless access router.

    • Update the firmware.
    • Change the default password.
  2. Confirm that you have current Antivirus and Antimalware software installed.

    • Confirm that all features are enabled.
    • Confirm that automatic signature updates are enabled.
  3. Always lock your computer when you step away.
  4. Be extra vigilant and watch out for Phishing Emails, Wire Transfer Requests, Electronic Fax Notifications, and other suspicious emails.
  5. Never share the computer with another person that you are using to remotely connect to the office.
  6. If using Windows, confirm that Windows Firewall is enabled, if not then enable it.  Otherwise, enabled the firewall feature in your Endpoint Protection Software.

Businesses should share this information with their employees and confirm that the employees are compliance.  Firm Administrators or IT departments should consider requiring employees to send a screen shot proving that they have current antivirus software.