Last Updated on: September 26th, 2016
Security tips for entrepreneurs is not something that is often discussed… but it needs to be!
Entrepreneurs, including freelance writers (and anyone who works with digital files on a daily basis) need to be aware of the steps they can take to ensure that their hard work is not lost, deleted, or stolen, never to be retrieved.
The purpose of this article is to share some security tips you can follow easily to protect your computer/laptop and data from being compromised.
Before you read through the following article (because I KNOW you are a scanner!), here is the format this post will follow:
- Protecting your sensitive information is of paramount importance.
- You can’t afford to lose time cleaning up after an attack.
*Follow Basic Internet Security
- Many people still don’t know what dangers await them online.
- This is a travesty for freelance writers!
- Strong passwords
- Best security programs
- Use trustworthy sites
*Use a VPN
- You will want to use a VPN
- Public networks are dangerous and vulnerable to hackers.
- Your data can be intercepted
- VPN creates an encrypted connection that will protect you
- You will also have a great deal of privacy
- Your IP address is masked
- This protects against monitoring and censorship
- Your IP address is masked
*Have Backups Prepared
- Don’t put all of your digital eggs in one basket
- You are going to have a hardware failure
- You need a way to recover your data
- You should back up at least every week
*Update Your Software
*Thank you / brief conclusion
Now let’s get into it, shall we?
Security Tips for Freelance Writers
Any business will know the importance of protecting their sensitive information and their goods, and as a freelance writer, you are effectively your own business, responsible for such decisions. In such a highly competitive and time-sensitive environment as freelance writing, you can’t afford to waste several days of work getting rid of malware or harm your reputation due to losing a client’s data. This is why you absolutely need to protect yourself and review your own security practices.
Here are a few tips that will help you protect your work product when using the internet and prevent your business from being harmed by hackers.
Follow Basic Internet Security
While some people follow the basic rules of internet security, one would be surprised at how many still don’t know what risks might await them or their data if they don’t use basic protection. For freelance writers, whose computer is quite literally how they make their livelihood, this is especially important.
You want to make sure that you are using the strongest (and varied) passwords that you can possibly remember and to not under any circumstances share those passwords.
In addition, it is absolutely necessary that you use the best security programs and suites on any computer that you have in order to keep yourself from becoming the victim of malware or viruses.
Finally, you need to know which websites to trust and which to avoid when surfing the web for research purposes.
Use a VPN
Speaking of tools that will keep you and your clients’ data safe, you most certainly want to use a Virtual Private Network and read various reviews when looking for the right one for you.
The reasoning for this is twofold. First, if you ever like to get out and write somewhere other than your house, you are going to want to use a VPN due to the fact that public networks are extremely dangerous and you will be vulnerable to hackers without protection. The strongest password won’t do a thing against the methods hackers use to intercept data over public networks. What a VPN will do is make sure that your data cannot be intercepted and used against you by creating an encrypted connection between your computer and an offsite server over the public network.
No one will be able to penetrate the security on this connection, and in fact, you will have perfect privacy in your internet use, which is the source of the other security benefit. Because your IP address is masked by the offsite server’s, you will be able to be unaffected by government restrictions, monitoring, and censorship, as well as any other organizations that might do the same.
Have Backups Prepared
If you are going to have a career where almost everything you produce is a digital file, then you might not want to put all your eggs in one basket, especially when you can make a copy of the entire basket for the cost of a cheap flash drive or a free cloud service.
This is more important than you think because I almost guarantee at some point in your career you will certainly have a major hardware failure of which there was no way to directly recover your data. This is when you will want to make sure that you have your data backed up. You will in fact want to make sure that you back everything up every week at the very least. This way, should there be a major problem, you won’t have to completely restart any projects you are working on (if you even have the time to do that).
Update Your Software
One last tip is whatever software you might be using in your freelance career that connects or is involved with sensitive information should be updated as often as possible. Yes, this includes those annoying Windows updates you hate so much. The reasoning for this is that many hackers use the bugs and exploits corrected in these updates in order to gain access to your system. And once a problem has been patched, it is a broadcast to every cybercriminal that this is a way in until users update their machines.
Thanks for reading. I hope you will always be prepared for any attacks on your passion and career as a freelance writer… or any other type of entrepreneur.
For more information, feel free to check out Cassie’s other post, 10 Top Security Tips For Bloggers – A Guest Post By Cassie Phillips. It’s pretty good!