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We’re Glad You’re Here…to learn some best practices for remote work

We’d love to share some best practices for remote work. Here at TraitWare, we understand that adapting to changing work habits can be challenging. Yet possibilities are opening at every corner to make this much easier and even more secure.  From scanning a QR to login without passwords to working remotely with people from all over the world, we can help find a balance that gives peace of mind to everyone. We even have FREE OFFER during these trying times.

It’s important to remember that shifting from a separate work office to a home office might take some getting used to. Reading on, you will find some tips and resources to making the best of yours or your employees’ workplace. You can also feel free to reach out to us at any time with questions you might have.

Environment

Understand that people may not have a space set up for remote work; from a place in the home to a secluded area, or the video or microphone equipment required to have quality video calls. Be understanding, empathetic and patient with these imperfect working conditions. Provide multiple options for meetings, such as a call-in for those without strong bandwidth or a recording that can be accessed later. You may also want to look into a headset with a built-in microphone to improve the quality of conversations.

Communication

Set consistent video calls to keep people from feeling isolated and remind them they are integral to the team. Make them short 15-20 minute catch up calls to set the vision and let people know their work is still critical to the success of the company. External webcams can be purchased at a fairly low cost and can provide users with the option to unplug the camera when it’s not in use.

Invest in a secure chatting platform. There are free options out there, but the best options probably require an extra cost for securing your logins. Quick communication through one platform can help people feel less disconnected from their co-workers.

In the Home

Be aware that others in the home workspace, from spouses to children, may also all be trying to “WFH”. As elementary and college students are switching to a study-from-home model, there will be adjustments to classes moving online.  The levels of productivity may change depending on the situation. Also, remember to take breaks. Without your co-workers around, you may forget to get up, stretch, and reset your brain. We need to remember to show compassion and build trust with each other.

Technology Considerations

With an understanding of the practical and social adjustments needed for remote work, let’s look at some best practices from the technology side to help make this transition more risk-averse and less frustrating for remote workers.

Security Practices

  • Use a VPN to connect to your company’s servers and resources.
  • Encrypt your home WiFi. Link to Wikihow
  • Encrypt your files (Vera Crypt is free – and can do it folder by folder.) Or consider solutions like FileFlex by Qnext or I2Chain for securing files. 
  • Use a secure Identity Provider (IdP). One with the ability to provide Passwordless Multifactor (MFA) inherent is what we recommend.  Do NOT – under ANY circumstances – save your passwords to your browser!!! (learn more here)
  • Think about using Slack, Discord, Microsoft Teams or something secure to communicate. Preferably one that can be accessed through a secure IdP using authentication standards like SAML2 or OpenID Connect. Try to avoid using things like Facebook or LinkedIn for secure chat platforms. (learn more here)
  • Consider checking for HTTPS everywhere (that’s the part before your website address – ‘https://...’) – visit only sites that use HTTPS and then be cautious! Even “phishing” sites can be “secured”. Understand that the #1 target in most phishing attacks is still your credentials (username/password). Do not enter them in any form that you did not initiate.
  • Keep your devices updated (OS, Applications, Firmware, etc.) We all know these are a pain but all the majors like Microsoft, Apple and Google have tremendously more resources to address vulnerabilities than anyone else, so use the updates and patches they provide.
  • Lock your computer when you aren’t in front of it. This again is something that needs to be a best practice so that when not in a secure location it is a habit, not an afterthought. 
  • Is the computer that you’re using for work set up with you as the administrator? We highly recommend using a non-admin account for your daily work. 
  • Consider adding a privacy screen. We recommend not sitting with your screen in view from a window – especially in a complex for apartments, condos, hotel/motel, etc. 
  • Do you use a virtual assistant at home? If so, it should not be in the space you are working in or needs to be disconnected (offline) so that it does not record any confidential information from your company as you have video calls or are reading documents with IP content in them. 
  • Use a secure browser. Choose a secure browser like Brave, Firefox Focus and TOR.

As you think through these best practices and consider everyone is dealing with similar struggles, let’s all work to be better together, and in this time of working remote we can build bridges with each other. We are encouraged by people’s innovation and how we can all empower each other. Choose positivity and we will all win.

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