If you’ve kept your business running with employees working from home, you’re probably through the equipment setup frenzy. And now you’ve hit the working-out-the-bugs phase. This post features tech-related FAQs we’ve been answering for clients.
My TechGen staff and I are also working from our homes. We empathize with those of you striving to serve your clients–who themselves may be in serious situations–while managing the technical challenges of a remote operation.
Remote Work Tech-Related Questions & Answers:
Rather than processing all the data from your office servers via your home internet, a remote access service gives you remote control over your work computer’s keyboard and mouse. All the major processing is then done on your office’s network, using its internet connection speed.
If you use a managed IT services provider, that company may have its own remote control service their clients can use (ours is called TechGen Remote Access).
I do have concerns about reports of security and privacy issues with Zoom. But many of these issues cropped up because the original default settings in the free version of Zoom didn’t include basic security measures, such as requiring passwords.
Zoom now has basic safety features turned on by default. That doesn’t make it completely safe, however, and it’s a good lesson about using these tools in general: Lack of passwords and other protections make the platform super easy to use — and really easy to hack.
But, for these services to be safe, you still need to make sure security settings such as passwords and waiting rooms have been enabled.
If employees are connecting to your company network for work every day, consider asking employees to allow your IT services firm to evaluate home internet setups for basic cybersecurity measures, such as a firewall and an antivirus suite.
This can be done remotely, without violating anyone’s privacy, and it shouldn’t take long.
If you and your employees are using personal computers for work at home, and you’re downloading files from company file-sharing services — like Microsoft SharePoint, Dropbox, Box.com, etc. — these files should never contain sensitive personal data of your company, clients, or vendors.
Another risk with file-sharing services inviting your personal email address to have access to a company folder.
Personal email simply isn’t secure. It’s also not safe to use personal email to send company files containing sensitive data to yourself, to your co-workers, or outside the firm.
But as an employer it’s your responsibility to assess their productivity, and you have a right to know how your company’s IT equipment and network are being used.
How to Gain at Least One Positive Outcome From This Terrible Situation
We may never have a better opportunity than this to create or refine a solid business interruption (or “continuation” plan).
Ask for your employees’ feedback on your remote work operations. What worked? What didn’t? Document the results, and make sure everyone knows how to find your new/updated plan, should it be necessary, and how to follow it.
This may be a once-in-a-life occurrence. I hope so. But let’s stay ready, just in case.