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Cybersecurity

What to Know About Using a VPN When Working From Home

Mark Lukehart

woman using laptop at home

Remote work is here to stay at many organizations. One of the biggest issues is staying safe online while working.

Cybercrime is rampant, and anyone could be a target. More than 80 percent of organizations globally report that they have been hacked. Small and mid-sized businesses are often targeted due to their lack of internal security measures.

One way to protect yourself and your company is to use a VPN connection. In this article, we’ll discuss why remote workers should use a VPN and how to choose the right VPN provider for you.

Key Takeaways

  • Since the pandemic, remote online work has been the norm for many people. This increases the risk of cyber attacks and other security threats at work.
  • VPNs are security tools that encrypt your web traffic and protect your location data, which makes working from home safer.
  • VPNs are very affordable and easy to install on both your computer and mobile device.
  • When selecting a VPN provider, look for advanced security features, speed, and reliable customer support options.

Should You Use a VPN if You Work From Home?

Yes, remote workers should use a VPN while working from home. Cybersecurity risks are high, and a VPN protects your internet connection to keep your activity private. This protects both your personal information and your company’s valuable data.

A VPN is particularly important if you’re working from a co-working space, coffee shop, airport, or other place with public wi-fi. A VPN creates an encrypted connection that outsiders can’t access, even when you’re using public networks.

Even if you live in a remote or rural area, there are still security issues to worry about. For example, your internet service provider and the websites you use could be collecting location data and other personal information. A VPN keeps this information private by masking your IP address.

What is a VPN?

A virtual private network, or VPN, is a service that encrypts your internet connection to keep your. VPNs create an encrypted tunnel that cybercriminals and other third parties can’t break through. Encryption uses cryptography to convert your data into ciphertext, which is virtually impossible for outsiders to decode.

VPNs also mask your IP address, which keeps your location data private. They do this by routing all web traffic through a Proxy Server before sending you to your final destination. 

There are many different types of commercial VPNs on the market. VPNs have increased in popularity in recent years as consumers are prioritizing privacy online. Some modern software programs even include VPNs as part of their functionality.

Your organization can also use a point-to-point VPN. This creates an encrypted tunnel between the remote worker and the company’s network. This is an excellent option for companies who work with sensitive data and need to adhere to strict compliance standards. 

Benefits of Using a VPN For Remote Work

There are many benefits to using a VPN server while working remotely. Here’s how this cybersecurity solution protects you and your company.

Protect Sensitive Workplace Data

The biggest advantage of using a point-to-point VPN for remote work is that it protects your company’s intellectual property and business information while you’re working online. Many hackers will seek out corporate networks and target valuable login details, company financial information, or even trade secrets.Protect Personal Data

Using a VPN like Express VPN or SurfShark doesn’t just protect your company – it also protects your personal information. When working online, you may need to share information like your location, birthday, or even your bank details. A VPN protects this information from both cybercriminals and advertisers. 

Reduces the Risk of Cyber Attacks

Cybercriminals will often use unsecured wi-fi networks to launch debilitating cyberattacks. For example, they may monitor your browsing data and uncover your work email address, which they will then use to send phishing or malware emails.

Many cybercriminals will also use public wi-fi networks to conduct man-in-the-middle attacks. In these cyber attacks, the hacker will intercept communication between two parties to steal personal information and data. In a corporate context, they might intercept communication between you and your accounting platform to steal financial data.

These cyberattacks have devastating consequences for your company. Recovering from a data breach will cost your entire organization time and money. If the data breach is publicized, it could also damage your reputation and make it difficult to win clients in the long run. The global cost of cybercrime is predicted to hit $10.5 trillion by 2025, indicating just how disastrous these financial consequences can be.

Using a reliable VPN will help minimize the risk of these devastating attacks. Since a VPN creates a secure tunnel for your browsing activity, it’s harder for outsiders to interfere with your work.

Cost-Effective Security Solution

One of the biggest benefits of using a commercial VPN is that they are very cost-effective. There are low-cost VPNs on the market, so you won’t need to break the bank to stay safe while working. 

How to Choose a Secure VPN

Not all VPNs are created equal – some offer more security features and benefits than others. Here’s what to look for when selecting a VPN.

Robust Encryption

Your VPN’s encryption needs to be powerful enough to keep hackers at bay. Look for a VPN with AES-256 encryption standards.

Advanced Security Features

The best VPNs come with advanced security features for further protection against external threats. Look for a VPN with strong security protocols and leak protection, as well as a kill switch to disconnect you from the web if you lose connection to your VPN. Many VPNs also come with a strict no log policy to protect your privacy.

Large Server Network

Your remote access VPN should have a large network of servers to choose from. This will give you more options to choose from when selecting your online location. A large server network will also be able to handle high volumes of global internet traffic with no problem.

Fast Speeds

Working online often means taking video calls and engaging in other activities that require plenty of bandwidth. Look for a VPN provider that can offer consistently fast browsing speeds so you won’t miss any important calls. Many VPN apps have speed test features, so you can make sure your connection is fast enough before hopping on a video call.

Supports Multiple Devices

If you work from both your computer and your smartphone, you’ll need a VPN that supports multiple devices. Make sure your VPN is easy to install on mobile devices and is compatible with a variety of operating systems.

Reliable Customer Service

Customer service is always important when choosing a VPN, but it’s particularly important if you’re going to be using that VPN for work. If you encounter an issue with your VPN, it’s important to get it solved right away so it doesn’t interfere with your productivity for the day.

Look for a provider that has multiple customer service options, such as email, phone support, or live chat. At least one of these options should be available 24/7.