The IT world is changing a lot, and this trend will not pass but is likely to intensify after the end of the pandemic. Most organizations that were not ready for remote work have to “kneel” the means of remote and collaborative work, often sidelining such important aspects as safety, accessibility, and continuity of service. The most important thing is that people, trying to protect themselves against COVID-19, shouldn’t forget about securing their devices. Look through some Windows 10 antivirus software reviews, or Eset antivirus review for Android 2020, and pick the solution that will be your safeguard during these hard times.
How to Organize Secure Remote Access
The remote work of employees is no longer a new phenomenon and has long been practiced by many companies, especially from the IT-sphere. However, the current circumstances force companies to face a difficult choice. What should they do – close for a time and bear huge losses or transfer their employees to remote work as quickly as possible and continue to operate in changed conditions.
Remote Work Risks
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Today, a large number of companies must solve the problem of organizing remote access to their employees. The importance of maintaining business continuity by enabling remote employees to work is clear. Remote access, however, carries significant risks.
What are the main risks when organizing remote access:
- Unauthorized access to corporate systems;
- Sensitive data leakage;
- Malware infection.
To minimize these risks, it is necessary to approach the issue of remote access protection carefully and to organize secure remote access at all stages.
What to Do First?
Full remote operation requires secure access to your enterprise information systems and data, as well as the security of the enterprise data that leaves your organization’s secure perimeter.
In practice, two steps are needed:
- Provide direct access to remote desktops and applications via virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) gateways or enterprise network access via virtual private networks (VPN), with both scenarios necessarily implemented using strict or enhanced user authentication;
- Encrypt corporate data on computers that are outside the organization’s protected perimeter and are not subjected to corporate policies.
Looking at an organization’s infrastructure when organizing secure remote access, there are three logical segments:
- Uncontrollable segment;
- Network segment;
- Enterprise Resource Segment.
The uncontrolled segment includes devices that are not in the corporate data network. That is those devices used by employees while in remote mode: home PCs, laptops, smartphones. This segment is the most high-risk, as there is no constant control and access to devices located in this segment. It is especially true for those employees who use their personal devices for work purposes.
With all of the above in mind, you need to focus on:
- Remote WS security control (including home PCs that are not in the domain);
- Providing a secure connection;
- Collection of information on user actions on the workstation;
- Analysis of employee behavior during remote access to corporate services.
This approach should be used when designing a system to provide secure remote access to enterprise business applications.
The key results of the implementation of such a system are:
- Protection of remote workstations, following corporate requirements of workstation security;
- Guaranteed delivery of the software required for remote operation;
- Secure network connection with end device compliance check;
- Possibility of remote WS control;
- Detection of anomalies in user behavior in different subsystems.
The system allows moving the organization to the remote mode of operation for the time of quarantine as soon as possible. Besides, it helps to change the approach to the organization of employees’ workplaces during the regular mode of operation of the organization.
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The technical ability to operate from any device anywhere in the world will become a mandatory requirement. The constant burden on the information security department will also increase. Now, the number of threats and attacks has increased many times – hackers want to take advantage of the situation and get access to unprotected data. At the end of the pandemic, the transfer of services from traditional mode to automatic mode using IT systems will continue.