Are your remote workers secure? Are you willing to risk your organization’s IT security?

by | Sep/13/2008

With the economic condition and gas prices, more organizations are allowing telecommuting than ever before.  There are definite security concerns when you allow remote workers.

For example, consider for a moment that you have an employee, Mrs. Smith, who works from home using a computer that her teenager shares.  If the teenager has spent much time at all using the computer, browsing social networking sites, communicating through Instant Messenger – IM, and downloading software, then there is a good chance her computer is infected.  Now those infections can affect your business.

There are viruses that can attempt to propagate through your network gathering private information, deleting files, and launching attacks against other networks. Key logging software may capture Mrs. Smith’s login information to allow unauthorized users to log in later. Screen capturing programs may be reading private data as Mrs. Smith examines it on her screen. Trojans may be installed in your network to allow remote access to unauthorized uses from other countries. These are just a few of the problems that can happen when malicious software is on a remote machine.

Yet telecommuting has many benefits and is encouraged – as long as the organization is protected. The keys are to have a healthy awareness of the dangers, educate your employees, and implement the latest security measures to keep your network safe.

Some technologies can actually examine the remote machines before allowing a user to connect. If the remote machine does not meet minimum standards for security, the connection can be refused.

Other technologies can publish programs to the remote computer in such a way that the remote computer’s interface is in a safety zone that is protected against most kinds of attacks.

It is too much work for an IT professional to go visit every remote computer on a weekly basis to check the security, so there are centrally managed solutions as well that automate this task. Your qualified IT professionals can help you identify the best solutions for your organization.