How to stay Cyber Secure in your new Working-from-Home reality

How to stay Cyber Secure in your new Working-from-Home reality

March 20, 2020

Let’s start with your home technology environment.

  1. First, find a dedicated workspace in your home and make it your own. Get comfortable with the device that you will be completing most of your tasks on (Desktop, laptop or tablet).
  2. Next, make sure it has full-disk encryption. That way, even if it should happen to fall into the wrong hands, any university data stored on it will not be accessible.
  3. Always use myVPN to remotely connect to the UBC network. Remember that since you’re now working from home, data traffic is flowing over public networks. If needed, set a reminder on your phone or calendar that pops up every morning so that you won’t forget this crucial step.
  4. Make sure you are properly enrolled with an Enhanced CWL. Just as it is second nature to ensure you have your keys, wallet and probably cell phone on your person, verifying that you have your ‘second factor’ for your Enhanced CWL should now be added to your daily routine.
  5. Remember to log out of your device when you’re not using it. This will prevent an inquisitive child or uncoordinated family pet from accidentally sending an email on your behalf.
  6. Be sure to implement a strong password policy on all of your accounts and logins.
  7. If you have to take your device with you to make a run to the grocery store or pharmacy, never leave the device unattended or on public display. Put your laptop or tablet in the trunk!


Next, watch out for scams directly related to COVID-19.

  1. Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or experts saying they have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the Coronavirus as it relates to British Columbians, visit the official websites for the BCCDC and the World Health Organization.
  2. Ignore online offers for vaccinations. There currently are no vaccines, pills, potions, lotions, lozenges or other prescription or over-the-counter products available to treat or cure Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) — online or in stores.


Finally, as digital interactions increase with more people telecommuting and schools moving instruction online due to social distancing measures, be extra alert to anomalies.

  1. Be aware of who is calling you
  2. Be aware of what you’re clicking on
  3. Do not respond to requests for information. Instead go straight to the source to verify the legitimacy of the request.


For further COVID-19 privacy and security information, please see the Privacy Matters COVID-19 Resources page.