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7 things you shouldn’t do on your work computer

Here are seven things that you should never do on your work computer.

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Many people work remotely or have to do some work from home after they leave the office. If your employer gave you a work computer to use outside of the office, you must treat it like any other property owned by your company. Here are seven things that you should never do on your work computer.

  1. Save Passwords

Typing in a password every time you check your email or access a document is a hassle. However, saving your passwords on a work computer makes it easy for hackers to gain access. Avoid storing passwords on your work computer.

  1. Gossip or Joke

During some downtime, it might be tempting to message with a friend about your job, boss or colleagues. If you do this on a work computer, chances are good the IT department and your boss will find out. You could be disciplined for misuse of company property or violating the work ethics at your organization.

  1. Use the Free Wi-Fi

One of the pleasures of remote working is that you could use the coffee shop’s free Wi-Fi to check your work email or wrap up some work. This is a bad idea. What you think is a convenient source of free data could actually be a hacker’s network ready and waiting to capture all of your passwords, security codes and other confidential data. Don’t use any free public Wi-Fi when you’re on your work computer.

  1. Allow Someone Else to Access It

You’re working on the weekend, the IT department at work won’t be back until Monday morning, and you have some tech trouble. It might be tempting to call your friend who’s a software whiz and allow them to remotely access your computer. This is likely a breach of your company’s information security policy, and it could get you fired. Avoid temptation and don’t allow anyone to remotely access your computer.

  1. Save Your Personal Data

Maybe your kids or dogs are really cute, so you have thousands of digital photos. Perhaps you have a big contacts list, or you routinely do online shopping with your work computer. Avoid storing any of your personal data on a work computer. If you were to be fired, you would have to turn in your work computer immediately. You wouldn’t have time to remove your data and transfer it to another device. If your company suddenly shutters its doors, you would not have time to remove your data. Use a micro USB or USB drive for your data, or keep it on devices you own.

  1. Work on Your Side Job

Maybe you do a bit of freelance writing or transcription as a side gig. Don’t use your work computer for it. Your employer can legally install tracking software on computers that employees take home. If your employer catches you using company property for a side job, you could be out of your main job.

  1. Take It Into Your Bedroom

Research has shown that having a television or computer in your bedroom makes it more difficult to relax and fall asleep at night. Leave your work laptop on the kitchen table or pack it up for the night at least 30 minutes before you go to bed. Let yourself relax and get a restful night’s sleep on a comfortable mattress.

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