Running your business from your home comes with many advantages. Tax write-offs for the office space and supplies, a nonexistent commute, and the acceptability of comfy pants (or no pants at all) are among the benefits of working from home. But a home-based business is still a business, and the responsibility for protecting your career, investment, and source of income falls on you.
Here are five essential security measures that all home-based businesses need to consider.
Set up the spaces you use for your work with care and consideration. There are multiple dimensions of safety and security to consider here. You’ll want to safeguard against attacks, accidents, and risks to equipment, as well as health implications. Avoid placing valuable equipment near unsecured doorways or ground-level windows. Allow adequate space around machinery to prevent overheating. Ensure shelves or tables are sturdy enough to support your equipment. Keep electronics and power cables or bars clean, clear, and out of range from any potential spillages to avoid causing damage or even a fire. If there is a production aspect to your business, then make sure that tools and machinery have a dedicated storage space.
Security is about safeguarding and making sure that your home-based business continues to make a profit, so anything that could potentially stall or prevent you from working is a hazard. Take a few moments every month or so to survey your space with an eye toward spotting and rectifying risks.
Locks and surveillance
Continuing with the physical security and safeguarding of your home business, it’s important to take preventative measures with locks and surveillance security systems. It can be tempting to assume that a home-based business doesn’t require the same level of security as a conventional workplace. But it’s important to keep in mind that there may be legislative requirements for you to protect customers’ sensitive files and data, and home-based businesses can be a tempting target because their electronics and equipment are often less secure. Insurance providers may also have expectations or offer better rates if quality security measures are in place.
If you’re a business, you need insurance. Depending on your business type, you probably need multiple forms of insurance. Liability coverage is a must and applies to businesses across the board. But you may not have realized the implications for things like automotive insurance, home insurance and warranties. If you’re conducting business out of your home, you need insurance for that, and you’ll want to make sure that any mishaps, thefts, accidents, or additional wear-and-tear are covered. You might also have a production-based home-business or meet and work with employees, clients, and business partners on site. If this is the case, then home insurance and home warranty are absolutely vital if there is an incident. Make sure you look for insurance recommended by real customers with good home warranty reviews to get the best value and coverage for your home business.
Even with a smart space design, top-notch security, and good insurance, your home-based business can be at risk of theft, accidents, or hardware failures. Back up everything in at least one additional location. Redundancy storage is your friend – and when it comes to digital files, you can easily automate the process. One or more cloud service can save you from a major catastrophe in the case of hacking, hardware failure, theft, or damage. If you prefer something you can hold in your hand, backing up to disc, server, or external drive is also a smart choice, but remember that if you store everything together, a single incident can wipe it all out. Keep onsite backups in waterproof, fireproof storage or store it in an external location to provide greater peace of mind.
Digital security measures
Hackers can target small businesses more easily than large ones. Avoid becoming easy pickings with cyber security smarts. Use unique passwords, update them regularly, and keep track of them with a password manager. Always change preset passwords. Add encryption where possible and consider using a VPN for an additional layer of security.
Being vigilant about data backups is also smart cyber security protection. If one set of records gets hacked or caught in a ransomware attack, you may have some information exposure, but you haven’t lost everything. Set your mobile devices and computers to log out rather than staying open when you walk away to avoid proximity-based hacking, and update your software quickly and regularly to close known security loopholes. Finally, although it seems painfully obvious, make sure that you install antivirus software and use a firewall on all your digital devices.
Taking appropriate, preventative security measures for your home-based business can protect your income and reputation. Start working through these five dimensions today to reduce risk.
Source: Home Business
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