Limiting Vulnerabilities When Working Remotely During the COVID-19 Crisis
This “new normal” that we are all adjusting to during the COVID-19 outbreak is forcing us to rethink how and where we work. Adapting to remote working can be frustrating. It can take some time to figure out what works for you, and what doesn’t. For those of us who have not worked from home prior to this crisis, there is a steep learning curve. It’s all a learning process for most of us who have worked in an office. So many things need to be considered from where to set up an office, to how to log on, to how to keep company data secure. While we can’t help you rearrange your living room to make an office space, or entertain your kids while you work, we can help you with limiting your online vulnerabilities when it comes to working remotely. In fact, it’s one of our specialties. Many companies, especially those in the tech industry, have remote working infrastructure and policies already set up. For smaller companies who usually operate out of a physical office or storefront, policies and procedures will need to be addressed in order to ensure that everyone is on the same page. Smaller businesses may have a taste of what remote working is with one or two employees that work from home on occasion, but this is something entirely different.
Now that your staff and team members have been sent home with company issued laptops, desktops, and tablets to complete their work, it is important to review a few steps for security that you would like them to take. Require a level of physical security to protect the hardware you will need brought back into the workplace once this crisis is over. Ask that employees give the serial number and other important info on the items they are bringing from the office into their homes. A sign out policy may need to be started, but for now just having the pertinent info would work. Since there are few places for employees to go and work such as coffee shops or libraries, you really won’t have too much concern about theft. You may want to remind employees about proper handling and care of the tech you have assigned. Simple things like not eating or drinking over the hardware, or not allowing children or others to use it in order to protect it from physical damage.
Along with concerns about the physical vulnerability of the hardware you are sending home, you may have many worries about safely connecting with your team remotely. There are several things you can require that can help keep online connections secure and minimize vulnerabilities.
Log out of the company server when not in use.
Maintain strong password security.
Use a VPN when possible. This prevents man-in-the-middle attacks from remote locations: remember that since you’re now working from home, the traffic is now flowing over public networks.
Use full-disk encryption ensures that even if the device falls into the wrong hands, the company’s data is not accessible.
Enforce the same endpoint security policy for antimalware, firewalls, etc.
Limit the ability to store, download or copy data.
Do you have questions about how to keep your data and hardware safe during the quarantine? Call us at Spectra Networks or check out our resources online.