Do You Trust “The Others”?

best practice- purchasedEver thought about who uses the computer at home
Last week we discussed some important pointers to keep in mind before and as your business grows. This week, we will take it personally – well, at least some pointers to keep in mind while working at home.
I purchased a new Dell laptop for myself, so that I can work at home. Before I knew it, my children were using it for their schoolwork and pleasure.
What are some things which I made sure to adjust, as the use of the laptop evolved from “my laptop” to the “family laptop”?
When logging in using the browser, did you accidentally hit the “remember my password” or “remember this computer” bar?
While at work, this saves you time. At home, this may be a very dangerous move.
Your children or any of their friends using your computer may be able to access your bank or email accounts or perhaps work related programs.
As a general piece of advice, always think twice before hitting the “remember my…”, since you never know who may be sharing your computer with you down the road.
While my daughter brought in the kitchen sink for show and tell, do you want your child accidentally emailing out your P&L statements instead of the book report?
When you view a document (spreadsheet, PDF, or any other sort of work related file), many times you download it to the computer, either to view it better or to make adjustments. Once it’s on the computer, how quick are we to hit delete? Therefore, we tend to leave potentially sensitive data on a computer which others can access.
Therefore, when using a family computer, it may be a good idea to truly delete any files which you downloaded or saved to a computer which other people access on a fairly regular basis.
Web History
Once your on the family computer, perhaps it may be a good time to browse the recent history. Many parents like to have an idea of what their children are doing, so go ahead and check out the recent history. (Note: If it’s blank, then you know someone is hiding something!)
Once your on the computer, do you see any “funny activity”? Perhaps while downloading the latest free game, some spyware came along with it. Maybe a quick clean up on the computer is due?
Bottom Line
On a practical note, creating a separate user on the computer for your work related activities, may help avoid some of the above mentioned issues. Of course some common sense to protect your corporate data and to ensure the computer is only being used for activities you approve of would be the fist step in protecting your information.

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