How to Secure Your Home-Based Small Business
If you have a home-based company, you may wonder where your commercial security needs cross over between personal and business protection.
Below, we overview tips to keep houses and companies safe from harm.
1. Purchase a Small Business Security System
With a home-based business, the level of security needed at your residence increases. To protect your business’ (and home’s) valuables, consider installing:
- Basic intercom system. Speak with employees in another room or a client at the door.
- Burglar alarms. Business alarm systems protect your valuables at all times, whether at home doing business, enjoying time off, or away on a trip with 24/7 business security monitoring.
- Carbon monoxide detectors, fire alarms and water detectors. Safeguard personal belongings and business equipment from environmental hazards, such as fires or floods.
- IP surveillance cameras. Video surveillance systems keep an extra set of eyes on areas/rooms where expensive or fragile equipment and documents are kept (e.g. computers or financial data). Storing video documentation on a local network video recorder (NVR) or through offsite storage, such as a Cloud-based system, is key to ensuring you have the information when you need it.
- Remote access control via smartphone, laptop or tablet. Control security equipment and devices from the road or another area of your home.
2. Secure Networks and Critical Data
Your at-home business likely has critical information that needs to be protected to ensure the company’s integrity. Whether your data consists of medical or credit card information, it’s essential to take necessary security measures to protect it.
According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), small businesses should take the following precautions to avoid being hacked:
- Install firewall, antivirus and malware software, and perform regular updates to keep systems clean and running properly.
- Encrypt Wi-Fi connections and sensitive data so it’s difficult for hackers to decode valuable information.
- Back up physical files electronically.
- Create strong passwords, and change them every three months.
- If you have employees, ensure they are educated on security best practices, especially when working remotely.
Consider hosting business equipment and home devices on separate networks. If one network gets hacked, attackers won’t gain access to both business and personal information.
3. Know What Insurance Policies Cover
When you have an at-home business, the lines can get blurred when it comes to differentiating between homeowner’s insurance and business insurance. Although some homeowner’s insurance policies may cover business equipment, the majority won’t protect lost data, income or liability. To determine whether you need additional coverage for your home-based business, it’s recommended you work with an insurance provider to uncover your needs.
Additionally, ask yourself questions, such as:
- What are my business’ most valuable assets?
- How often am I working at home vs. a remote office, coffee shop or client’s office?
- Are clients or employees frequently visiting my home?
- Is business data stored at home or an off-site location?
- Is my home’s location more at risk for theft or robbery?
- How many employees do I have, if any?
How do you secure your home-based business? Share with us below.
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