4 Tips for Household Cyber Risk Management

4 Elements of Household Cyber Risk Management

March 15, 2022


Data breaches and cybercrime impact businesses globally, whether via a phishing scam, hacking, breaking into personal accounts, or other virtual exploits. While this is huge for commercial enterprises, many of us forget about the risks we may be exposed to within the four walls of our very own homes. In this blog, we go over the security risks that you may face at home and what measures you may take to mitigate your exposures.

Cyber crime risks at home

With widespread stay-at-home restrictions and a global pandemic forcing many workers to swap their daily commute to a shared office and secure network to their home, cyber criminals have ramped up their efforts to exploit the new situation. Working from home, while initially a safer, temporary situation, has become an entry point for many cybercriminals to steal sensitive data.

During this period, over 25% of employees working from home noticed a spike in malicious emails. Even family members who are not using technology to do work, such as our children accessing social media, may be exposed to threats such as cyberbullying and encounter incidents where cyberbullies threaten to leak inappropriate or personal information.

Needless to say, it’s a concern wherever you are. So how do we mitigate these risks?

1. Educating your household about phishing and spam

To prevent a data breach, educating your household about what phishing scams may look like is a good start. You may also wish to encrypt your household’s devices, including all tablets, phones, and laptops, as this will prevent unauthorized access if the device is stolen or lost. (Some Cyber Liability policies will not cover unencrypted devices.)

Tell your family about the importance of not clicking on any emails, messages, or links that seem suspicious. Educate them on how to identify a suspicious email and what to do if they see one. Ensure that you regularly remind them, especially because new risks can pop up often.

2. Practice basic “cyber hygiene” with strong security

It’s easier to remember a single password for multiple accounts but it isn’t always the safest thing to do. Make sure that if you have multiple accounts – especially for your work – that you always use a different password and change it regularly. Use a password that has a mix of upper case and lower-case letters, symbols, and numbers. Tell your family to do the same, including their work account and personal accounts. If too many passwords are difficult to remember, use a password manager.

You may also want to secure your WiFi access point – especially if you are an employee working from home and are used to a secure network – so that an attack cannot happen via this entryway. Consider using a virtual private network as well.

3. Have a cybersecurity response plan

Sometimes, things happen. If you, or a member of your household, are the victim of a cyber attack, it’s better to be prepared. If your work accounts were the target of a cyber attack, you may look to your company’s IT for clear guidance and easy-to-follow steps on how to communicate following a suspicious event. At home, it is never a bad idea to invest in Cyber Liability to protect yourself from the repercussions of a ransomware, cyber attack, or hacking event.

4. Protecting your data with Cyber Liability

As an addition to your cyber risk management efforts, your household may also include Cyber Liability insurance to cover the security needs of your household. Cyber Liability insurance, designed to meet the needs of your household – can help with risks that your average homeowner’s insurance would not cover. Depending on your needs, your insurance cover level may vary.

Excalibur Insurance can help you find Cyber Liability insurance solutions tailored to you and your family’s needs. See below for more information on what we offer for Cyber Liability.

While a cyber risk management program is essential for your household (and your business), Cyber Liability insurance can secure your peace of mind if something ever does happen.