There are overarching concerns when working remotely are safety, security, and compliance.

It is important to ensure remote work can be performed safely and securely to avoid data being compromised.

Those in the healthcare and financial industries need to take extra precautions to ensure they are not only secure but also remain compliant. For those that aren’t aware, your remote work solution must be compliant if you are subject to HIPAA, FINRA, SOX or PCI regulations. If the method remote access isn’t compliant, you are exposing your data and business to unnecessary risk.  Some things to consider when thinking about this.

Am I working in a secure, web-based environment or am I working on a local server infrastructure located in my office?

If you answered a web-based environment, you’re most likely in compliance since the provider is responsible for ensuring their systems meet whatever regulations you might be subject to. Conversely, if you’re working via remote connectivity, you need to make sure you’re accessing the data via a secure VPN or RDP connection. If you’re not, you need to get this in place as soon as possible to ensure your data is secure while in transit.

What does working remotely means for file access and collaboration?

If you answered Office 365, you should be in compliance as these meet minimum standards; however, there are those organizations that require heightened compliance measures when using these solutions and this may require upgrading your subscription to a more compliant variation. For example, your Office365 account may need to be increased from E2 to E3 for those familiar with how Microsoft designates these. Finally, and most importantly, if your solutions allow for MFA, please turn this on. This is one of the simplest yet most effective ways to ensure security around your data. For those that may not be familiar with this, when you log in to an application, it sends a code to your phone which provides a number you key in addition to your username and password. What does working remotely mean for a secure home internet connection? This is pretty simple since you just need something that provides minimal bandwidth and is reliable. However, for the employer, you will need a more robust internet connection that can handle many simultaneous secure connections since you’re going to have your entire team remotely accessing the network and, as a result, consuming bandwidth. We recommend Charter as our experience with them has been positive and the speeds are typically consistent. Keep in mind that cloud-based apps such as Microsoft Office 365 or Google Apps do not require or put any strain on the employer’s internet bandwidth.  This is because your end users are accessing those secure cloud platforms directly from their pc and internet at home; however, you do want to make sure the data is as secure as possible on a home network. We’ll talk more about this later. Either way, your remote workforce shouldn’t have to increase their connectivity – in most cases – unless they live in rural areas in which case they may be limited. At Throttlenet we’re here to help you decide what does working remotely mean for you and your business? How can we help you and your employees stay compliant and productive? Call us for a FREE consultation today! In our effort to better serve you in these unusual times we are unrolling a 3-part series that covers A-Z for each aspect. Check out our blog on safety and security here.

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