Prices may go down over the holidays but hacking incidents go up.  Way up.  While online shopping is something we all need to be diligent about when it comes to our personal cybersecurity, we need to be mindful of our working environment as well.

Many employees take this time of year as an opportunity to work from home or remotely.  Whether it is stationing themselves in a home office, coffee shop, or checking in periodically while “on holiday break”, with this change in circumstance, the risk of loopholes being created in cybersecurity increases.

Danger Zones

No, we aren’t talking about bringing up politics at the family dinner table.  But if you’re using that free Wi-Fi while your family strolls the mall, make sure you’re not sharing and viewing in a private environment.  That includes typing in your credentials to log into accounts.

Time to give your cousin the family photos from last year, and you’ve put them on a flash drive you had at work – with outdated company information. Stop right there.  Just because those old documents on the drive aren’t relevant anymore doesn’t mean they aren’t to a hacker.  Cousin Carol is unlikely to be as cautious as you might think. Furthermore, that data wasn’t intended to be viewed by Carol, either.

The Hustle & the Bustle

We’re all working like crazy to wrap up year-end, get gifts purchased, and finalize the dinner menu.  You don’t want to be working, you want to be doing all of the holiday things with your friends and family.  So, you may work quickly and likely in a more careless manner to get it done. Slow down and be safe.  You don’t want one quick click, share, or unsaved file to expose you or your company to a breach in the New Year.

We’re all busy, we’re all entitled to enjoy this time of year with family and friends.  Just make sure you don’t fa-la-la your way right into the dangers of the dark web unintentionally.