Working from Home – Keeping Your Business Running.
Business continuity is critical. Businesses, small and large, need to adapt when employees need to work from home because of business disruptions, such as a contagion, water break, or building remodel.
A survey conducted by SurveyMonkey and Zoom in 2021 showed that 65% of respondents who have been working from home over the past year said that a hybrid work environment was their ideal work model.* Employees desire the ability to work for home, the office, coffee shops, or other locations.
It is understandable that not all employees are in a role that allows them to continue their duties in a home or remote environment. For those eligible employees, make sure to work with your IT partner to establish necessary safeguards to protect the employee and the business.
Do not Forsake Security.
It is important to remember that you cannot forsake security when adding the remote capability for your employees. If you are considering adding remote capability, we strongly recommend working with a Managed Service Provider (MSP). Remote employees add a level of complexity to your business network that should be built and managed by a technology professional. Installing and maintaining your networks, business phone system, computers, and other office technology needs to be done by certified technicians. Doing it yourself or with unqualified staff can weaken your cybersecurity and open you up to devastating data breaches and hacks or business interruptions that can be costly and damage your reputation.
Before Sending Your Employee(s) Home – Consider:
- Do you have the hardware needed to work remotely? Computer, phone, router, and other technology.
- Do employees have access to critical programs, software, tools? How will they be accessing the necessary tools?
- Do employees have the needed remote capability with the business phone system?
- Does the home internet connection have the capacity to handle the increased computer and business phone usage?
- Have you established a remote work policy?
- How will you confirm confidentiality best practices and provide necessary training?
Securing the Work from Home Connection.
- Confirm that the VPN configuration and software are updated.
- Restrict access to only necessary networks, data, programs, and software.
- Confirm that all operating systems, browsers, and applications are up-to-date.
- Ensure strong passwords are set and used.
- Remove add-ons for browsers.
- Confirm home Wi-Fi is secure – optimizing “Guest” Wi-Fi when possible.
- Ensure all devices have anti-virus enabled and up-to-date.
While Working from Home – Best Practices to Implement:
- Avoid mixing work and personal activities on the same device.
- Use multi-layer security solutions.
- Have a backup strategy and follow it.
- Be especially aware of potential phishing attacks.
- Have a list of IT contacts and their work hours to call in an IT emergency.
Provide User Training. According to purplesec.com 30% of phishing messages get opened by targeted users and 12% of those users click on the malicious attachment or link. User errors are the primary cause of data breaches and hacks. While it is critical to ensure you have business-grade security on your technology equipment and networks, it cannot prevent threats from user error or misuse.
- Engage your Managed Service Provider or IT services manager to conduct regular employee training on their responsibility to keep your business technology secure.
- Establish email etiquette policies and procedures for all employees.
- Keep your team updated and informed on new cybersecurity scams and attacks.
Restrict unlimited network access by working in partnership with a professional IT Managed Services Provider who can keep you and your team protected and secure.Work From Home_Checklist