How to Secure Remote Access

How to Secure Remote Access

Dennis Snider

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There are more mobile workers than ever before who want to enjoy the flexibility of working from home, so secure remote access has become particularly important in recent years.

In fact, 62% of information workers in Europe and North America conduct at least some of their business outside the office. Forrester conducted the research, and there is a strong need for companies to provide safe and immediate access to their services.

Many companies are struggling to adapt to this challenge. It’s a dramatic shift that they have to accommodate for, so here are five key tips that can help businesses looking to offer secure remote access to their team.

1.Use Secure Cloud Apps

Many remote workers require access to a range of applications. Messaging is the most prominent and access is generally offered by TLS-secure Outlook Web Access and Exchange ActiveSync. While these solutions are great to address immediate needs, they are limited in that they do not offer support for other applications.

The needs of employees are going to continue to develop over time, meaning that their activities will need to be catered for. Some companies use a corporate VPN to connect an employee’s devices, but this can be overkill for some. Cloud services have exploded on popularity and these offer a viable alternative.

These applications can be added quickly, and the provider is responsible for security on the server side. This means that many businesses can leverage cloud-based applications to offer secure access.

2.Assess Your Needs

Each business varies in terms of specific needs. Rather than getting caught up in the craze, it’s a great idea to step back and pragmatically assess which technologies and solutions you need to address the specific business needs you have.

You may find that legacy remote access infrastructure is sufficient and could be tweaked to offer a viable solution. Taking this step back and accurately assessing needs alongside your network specialists can help you to find the best solution.

3.Secure Assets, Not Devices

Many secure remote access options can work perfectly for laptops and computers, while they might present vulnerabilities when used with a smartphone or tablet. It’s important that your assets are protected above all else, rather than the devices themselves. Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) is growing in popularity and this solution means that work environments are insulated and can’t affect the data center directly.

4.Monitor Data

It’s important that secure access options compartmentalize applications and data from the rest of the data on the endpoint device that an employee uses. The blend of this data can become troublesome and present a range of security risks.

Your business should consider using products that create encrypted sandboxes, meaning that IT teams can simply transfer or remove the sandbox if necessary. A similar approach is available on desktop devices, with many tools capable of creating a bootable secure environment that offers protection while managing data.

5.Think Mobile-First

Mobile devices are immensely popular and have overtaken desktop devices for a range of activities. It’s important, therefore, that your secure access strategy is based around a mobile-first approach. In reality, mobile workers are constantly connected, and they’ll use cellular networks and public networks constantly.

This is why it’s so important to think about how your solution can minimize security impacts and keep your users and your data safe.

We hope that these tips have been useful and help you to develop your secure remote access strategy – an increasingly important tool in most businesses.

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