Office Security: How to Upgrade on the Cheap – Guest Post by Jessica Thiefels
This guest blog about office security comes from Jessica Thiefels, a full time writer. To submit your own guest blog, first read the guidelines here.
The gig economy is on the rise and more people are working from home than ever before. 1 in 5 Americans work from home. Without an office, you miss a lot of things. You can get by if that’s kitchen gossip or free office supplies. But you should never skip out on office security – even if your office is at home.
You may be thinking, “But that doesn’t matter because my office is in my house, so it’s safe right?” If you have a security system in your home, and protective software set up on your computer, then yes—otherwise, not so much.
Without the provided security of an office space, it’s your job to ensure your items are safe in your home. This is especially true for workers who are storing confidential and important documents that would put your business at-risk if stolen or ruined.
Fortunately, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to upgrade your home office security and protect your business assets and technology. Use the following tips for taking your home office to the next level, making it secure for many years to come.
Invest in Effective Accessories
If you’re going to spend money on security accessories for your office, choose the ones that will provide the most value for the cost. The following items fall into that category and costs start at $50.
→ Fireproof safe
Fireproof safes are a great way to keep your most vulnerable documents and files safe in the worst-case scenario—you experience a house fire: “A fireproof safe is specially designed to withstand temperatures as high as 1750° for a period of two hours or more and control the environment within the safe,” according to Home and Business Security: Features of a Good Safe.
“This is done by beefing up the insulation in the walls of the safe and making smoke seals around the door that can expand in a fire.”
While a fire seems farfetched, it’s not out of the question. Security is about being prepared, and with a fire safe, you’re prepared.
→ Hidden security camera
Most hidden camera software now comes with real-time monitoring and DVR. Because of that, you can catch thieves in their tracks and have video proof to show police to boot! These cameras come in all different forms as well, from clocks to air fresheners and smoke detectors, making it difficult for an intruder to notice.
→ Door and window alarms
These small devices attach to your windows and doors and alert you (or the cops) if someone trips the alarm. They’re easy to install and great to use as a first-line of defense in the event of a burglary.
→ Door lock
A traditional home door lock is vulnerable. A burglar can force entry or pick the luck. Whether you want something affordable or ultra-secure, there are a wide variety of lock options.
- Double-cylinder deadbolt: You’ll need a key to lock the door from the inside and unlock it from the outside. This means a burglar can’t break a window, reach their hand in, and unlock the door.
- Mortise lock: Combines standard lock and deadbolt—doubling your security. “Since mortise locks are fitted inside the door itself, intruders will have a very difficult time to force it open. […] This type is of lock is also comprised of different notches and levers that makes it very difficult to pick.” That’s according to 6 Advantages of Using a Mortise Lock.
- Smart lock: This is the most expensive of the group, but it’s well worth the investment. If you want total peace of mind and the best product, go with a smart lock. Most smart locks sync with your phone, notifying you if someone has tampered with it. Some also come with keyless entry pads, so you don’t have to worry about someone gaining access to your key. If you share the code with someone, just change it right after to maintain safety.
DIY Your Own Home Office Security System
Use the aforementioned accessories to bring your home office security to the next level. You can take it a step further with a wireless home security system. You can install by yourself in just minutes. The best part is you can likely sync all these things to one wireless system. Most window and door sensors, smart locks, and other security accessories can sync with standard wireless systems. This allows you to control everything from one hub.
Many wireless home security systems start as low as $30, making them affordable for anyone on a budget. Some also come with motion sensors included. This is a project you can do on your own, so you’ll save on installation fees too.
Set Up Computer Security
Computer security is easy to access and set up now. In most cases, it doesn’t even require a physical disc for installation. Instead, you simply download the security option of your choice online and customize the settings for optimal safety.
Once installed, set your program to automatically scan your computer in weekly intervals. If you miss something, the weekly scan will catch and take care of it for you.
To protect your online accounts, don’t forget to download LastPass, another security tool that I use. We all know it’s not safe to keep a document full of passwords. But – remembering each individual one is nearly impossible. LastPass, which works as a browser extension, uses one main code to access a vault of all your passwords. It auto-fills usernames and passwords within your browser as well, if you choose to use that feature.
Home Office Security: Keep it Affordable and Safe
Ultimately, the goal is to keep your home office safe without spending too much money. All you need are a few accessories to boost security and gain peace of mind. Make sure to get a wireless security system and free computer security software. Invest in some or all of these options because you don’t want to wait before it’s too late.
Jessica Thiefels is a full-time writer, content marketing consultant, and business owner, happily working from home. She has 10+ years of experience. Forbes and Business Insider have featured Thiefels work. She has written for Manta, StartupNation, Salesforce, and more. Follow her on Twitter @Jlsander07 or connect on LinkedIn.