• 16 July 2024, 20:44 PM

Author Archives: DSM Group

Workplace Recovery Suite

5 things to consider in a workplace recovery plan

A workplace recovery plan will build resilience into your business, and prove to your staff and clients that you’re serious about keeping your business alive in the event of a disaster.

But what does a good plan look like? Here are five important factors you should consider:

  1. 24/7 access

A business continuity workarea recovery site which isn’t accessible 24 hours a day is something you want to avoid. While it’s easy enough to find a site that you can access during normal working hours, you should also consider the wider impact of a disaster scenario. You may, for example, need to use the disaster recovery (DR) site out of hours during a disruptive incident. Moving kit and people in the early hours is hard enough without the added issues of access.

  1. Facilities

When disaster strikes it’s easy to get caught up in the bigger picture and forget about the everyday resources your office needs to function. We’re not talking about servers and desktops but the smaller items that make life easier – like cables, phone chargers and even stationery – as well as a way of storing them.
The presence of local amenities and accommodation are also easily overlooked, but could be of great significance to you and your staff if you have to stay at the site for many weeks.

  1. Staff support

The top priority for most firms is the well-being of their staff. This was confirmed in a recent survey carried out by the Business Continuity Institute (BCI), which found that 90% of practitioners put staff safety before other factors, such as security of critical data, customer support and productivity.
Having a team of professionals at hand who can deliver a smooth transition for your business when you most need it is invaluable. Your workplace recovery provider should be committed to making your move into a backup office location as easy and uncomplicated as possible, especially during the initial stages following an incident.

  1. Security and privacy

In an ideal world you’d want your business continuity work area to be a replica of your current office. Of course, this isn’t always possible – which is why it’s important to concentrate on your core requirements. One such requirement may be a high level of security and privacy. For example, if you’re working with sensitive or regulated data you may decide that a shared space is simply out of the question for your business.

  1. Scalability

Many companies make the mistake of not thinking ahead; it’s important to consider your medium and long-term needs, not just the must-haves in the aftermath of an unexpected event.
Depending on issues such as permanent damage to your original premises, you may find that you need to stay in your backup site for longer than originally anticipated and that your requirements change over time.
Your plan should therefore include details on how many workplace recovery positions you require in a disaster scenario over a period of time, as well as how long you can reside there

wireless router security

10 tips to staying secure on public Wi-Fi

The convenience of Wi-Fi for most people is invaluable. Whether it is at home, in the workplace or out and about – even on holiday – we long to get connected wirelessly. It is, therefore, an increasingly important asset, especially in these ever-busy, mobile and interconnected times.

As such, being able to access it, anytime and anyplace, is essential to how we now live. In response to this, public Wi-Fi infrastructure is growing rapidly to meet our insatiable appetite for this service.

However, as advantageous as it is, there are risks associated with signing up to public hotspots, which many people seem to forget. We’ve all done it. We’ve all gone to a coffee shop or hopped onto a train and clicked to connect to the free Wi-Fi, without a second thought for whether it’s legitimate or secure.

We also seem to be quite happy to send our personal details to an unknown supplier or hotel offering these services just so we can get online, and if you’re lucky we may have only skimmed the provider’s terms and conditions. Yet, we should be more vigilant – the risks are plentiful.

With all this in mind, here are 10 tips to staying safe on public Wi-Fi.

  1. Check the authenticity

Always ask the owner of the Wi-Fi hotspot for the correct network name and password.

Be wary if there is no WPA or WPA2 password (for Wi-Fi protected access), as this will mean the connection is unencrypted, and pay close attention to potentially spoofed hotspots that bear close resemblance to the official name.

  1. Look for HTTPS

Https_wikipedia

You should ensure that the web pages you visit are https encrypted where possible. You can check this by looking for https at the start of the URL address bar, or for the security padlock sign.

This indicates that the website, and that particular page, has a valid digital certificate and up-to-date SSL/TLS encryption, thus making Man-in-the-Middle (MiTM) attacks much less likely.

If there is no encryption, log out – especially if you’re doing something sensitive like online banking. You should also pay close attention to mobile sites, as there’s no guarantee they will be https.

  1. Patch before you go

“Patching software regularly is essential security practice, especially with Wi-Fi.”

Patching and updating software on a regular basis is an essential security practice, especially when it comes to Wi-Fi.

You should keep your web browser, software and antivirus solution up-to-date to fix bugs, while an up-to-date antivirus engine will scan, detect and remove the latest threats.

Attackers will sometimes take advantage of poor patching by tricking unsuspecting users into downloading something they believe to be a software update. However, they will quickly realise that their machine has been infected with malware instead.

  1. Avoid accessing sensitive information

By and large, public Wi-Fi networks should not be used to access email, online banking and credit card accounts, or any other sensitive data for the matter. Your best bet is doing that from home, where hopefully your internet service provider delivered router is both password-and firewall-protected.

  1. Manually select Wi-Fi networks

Public Wi-Fi

Make sure your laptop, tablet or smartphone are set to manually select a Wi-Fi network, rather than having it automatically connect. Also, turn off sharing and Wi-Fi capabilities when the wireless is not in use, as this cut downs possible avenues for cybercriminals to exploit.

You should also remember to tell your phone or tablet to ‘forget’ certain networks if they are no longer in use or required, as this could mean your device will automatically reconnect when back in range.

  1. Use a Secure VPN

If you travel a lot and don’t have a cellular dongle but still need connectivity, consider a virtual private network (VPN). This is a safe way of surfing the web in an encrypted manner.

VPN solutions provide encryption and security across public networks, as well as masking your IP address so that opportunities for phishing are dramatically reduced.

  1. Utilise additional security tools

There is a much greater focus on online privacy than ever before, and so the likes of WatchGuard have become increasingly popular.

And, with regard to public Wi-Fi, you may find extensions useful in forcing encryption on websites that aren’t encrypted by default. This doesn’t protect you on all sites, but it will help for most.

  1. Adopt 2FA

Public Wi-Fi hotspots - know the risks 3

Enable two-factor authentication where possible. 2FA is increasingly seen as the future of authentication and it is wise for anyone using a hotspot. This per-website step adds an extra layer of protection for public password-sniffing hackers to try and overcome.

  1. Logout when finished

Don’t stay permanently signed in to your personal accounts when accessing public Wi-Fi hotspots as you may leave yourself exposed. For further security, log out from each website after each session.

  1. Turn off Wi-Fi if not in use

If you want to guarantee your security and you’re not actively using the internet, simply turn off your Wi-Fi. This is extremely easy in both Windows and OS X and will go a long way in protecting you from cybercriminals – the longer you stay connected, the longer people have to notice you’re there and they will start snooping around.

To discuss your WIFI Security requirements call us 03333 22 11 00