Improve your cyber security with a VPN and password manager

The UK Domain explain why your business needs a password manager and a virtual private network (VPN) in its cyber security strategy

With an increase in home working, online security has become a key priority for many businesses. Organisations have found themselves having to manage employee security remotely and deal with the various cyber threats that come with it.

Two ways to help improve security of sensitive information and data is through password managers and virtual private networks (a VPN). Both help to protect important data from external threats such as hackers.

In this article, we’re going to delve a little deeper into both tools and share some software options your business could look to implement.

Password Managers

We all know how difficult it is to remember our passwords for online accounts, from our social media to Amazon to Netflix, it can be very tempting to use the same one for everywhere. But if your employees are doing this for their work applications, it poses a big security risk. In fact, 80 per cent of data breaches are caused by compromised, weak and reused passwords.

Password managers are software applications which securely manage and store online credentials. They can also generate strong passwords and manage the secure sharing of credentials for shared software. Everything is stored in an encrypted database which is accessed via a master password and most password managers autofill login details without the need to visit your ‘vault’ each time.

There are a number of different options out there for businesses, here are just some platforms you might like to consider:

1. Google Password Manager

Google Password Manager is free and allows you to view and store passwords that you’ve saved in Chrome. These are then stored in a user’s Google account. Other key features include automatic sign in and password checkups to assess the security and strength of your login details.

2. LastPass

LastPass has business account options which enable you to connect employees simply and securely. Key features include using one master password to access your vault, a password generator, autofill for saved credentials and secure sharing for employees.

3. Dashlane

Dashlane fills all your passwords, payments and personal details online, on any device and also comes with a simple built-in VPN for extra security. Key features include autofill, patented security architecture and encryption, built-in two-factor authentication and an option to securely share passwords.

Virtual Private Network (VPN)

A virtual private network, or VPN, masks your IP address so your online actions are virtually untraceable and uses encryption to scramble data which is sent over a wi-fi network.

Unless you’re using a private wi-fi network, any data transmitted puts you at risk of exposing private information and browsing habits. A VPN helps protect sensitive information and prevents data falling into the wrong hands.

Like with password managers, there are a number of different options when it comes to VPN providers and platforms, here are three you might like to consider:

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is known for fast speeds, reliability and security. Key features include compatibility with multiple platforms, unrestricted access worldwide and the ability to hide your IP address and encrypt network data.

2. NordVPN

NordVPN is one of the most recognised brands in the sector, keeping all your internet data safe behind a wall of next-generation encryption. Key features include uninterrupted streaming, browser extensions and the ability to block malware and ads.

3. IPVanish

Thanks to its easy-to-use interface, IPVanish is well suited to businesses who are new to VPNs. Key features include hiding your IP address, fast and unrestricted access around the world and the ability to encrypt everything from your internet connection to files.

Some password managers, like Dashlane, come with a VPN so it’s worth considering what level of protection you need. This will depend on how often you and your employees work on different wi-fi networks and the type of information and data you typically share online.

Implementing tools like these will help to improve your business’s and employee’s cyber security efforts, plus it means you can have more peace of mind when working remotely and you don’t need to try and remember all your passwords!

There are plenty of other things you can also do to keep your staff secure when working from home, from setting up two-factor authentication to conducting regular training and ensuring backups and updates are being made.

This article has been brought to you in partnership with the UK Domain.    

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