Section 1 – Security
Protecting your business from cyber-crime should always be your biggest priority. You’ve probably got security covered in your office already – all of your computers have anti-virus software, you use a secure VPN and your data is stored away safely.
But if your team starts to work from home, you’re widening your exposure to potential threats. And cracks can quickly appear in your business’s protection. What is the business’ policy on employees using home devices to access company data
Have you talked to your team about potential scam emails that may come through to them which are more likely to be acted on?
Here’s a quick overview of what else should be considered:
Ensure your employees are using approved devices for work purposes only, especially if you use a VPN (Virtual Private Network, which is the safest way to work remotely)
Educate employees on device use whilst at home (not using work devices for game downloads etc)
Ensure all devices have anti-virus software
Do you need to setup multi-factor authentication (or 2FA)?
Do staff have access to passwords they require and how are they managing the storage of them?
Possibly asking them to change Wi-Fi passwords before using home Wi-Fi for business purposes
Section 2 – Access to data
If your employees need to work from home, it’s important that they can access everything th
ey need to fulfil their responsibilities.
It’s key to make sure all data is in a secure location that is accessible to begin with – have users been saving files on their desktop or directly on their computer?
Another thing to think about is how your employees can access business applications that may be needed. For each department in your business, think of all the different applications that are needed and try to create a list like this:
System How do we access? Who needs access Action / Options
e.g. Email Outlook All Setup webmail / mobile access
e.g. Documents File Explorer (My Computers) All Setup VPN access
Once you have done this, you can create a list for each member of your team with any specific requirem
ents and provide it to us so we can support the business as required.
Section 3 – Home office set up
If your employees have to work from home because of a Coronavirus emergency, the obvious question to ask is: does your team have the equipment they need to work remotely?
If they are using a desktop in the office, do they have access to a device at home to use or will they need something?
Decisions like this need to be planned in advance to ensure business continuity.
Have you considered your phone system? If your team requires access to an internal phone system then your current setup may not support that and therefore a different plan put in place. Under compliance is there any restrictions required when working from home?
Here’s a quick overview of what should be thought about:
Do you need to provider work laptops for employees to work from home?
Do your employees have the right internet access at home?
What phone systems do your employees require and do they have a suitable telephone device to work from?
Do your employees require any other additional equipment to fulfil work responsibilities at home?
Section 4 – Communication, collaboration and management
For any business owner or manager, there is always the worry that employees aren’t as productive working from home, as they would be if they were in the office.
Therefore clear communications, collaboration and management channels should be implemented to ensure your employees stay focused while working from home – they also then know what to do and how to do it. This is a bit like what should be covered in your Business Continuity Planning document.