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Staying safe with flexspace: what are the processes in place to keep you safe online?
The rise of Big Tech has given us a lot to be thankful for. In the form of a smartphone, most of us carry a computer around in our pockets that’s so powerful previous generations would find it hard to believe outside the realms of science fiction. We can download a TV show to watch on the commute home, book a last-minute holiday in five minutes flat, and browse local restaurants to see who can deliver dinner first when we don’t feel like cooking. At work, cloud-computing, better connectivity and greater data have allowed us to share large files in seconds – and the software that’s been developed to serve these instantaneous transfers allows us to work from almost anywhere. But what does all this convenience mean in a world that’s increasingly prone to data theft, anonymous hackers and malicious spyware? How can we protect ourselves while maintaining the flexible lifestyles we’ve become so accustomed to?
It’s a question that’s top of the agenda for chief information officers and risk directors in companies everywhere, large ones in particular (the more employees you have, the more “points of entry” there are for those with malicious intent). In fact, a recent Regus Magazine article found that businesses regard remote working as the number-one threat to data security, according to research from Australian cybersecurity specialist Rackspace. But despite this, we’ve reached critical mass when it comes to remote working, and as the millennial generation are now the largest demographic in the global workforce, the values they hold (a better work/life balance and the freedom to take control of their own schedules) have become a way of life.
So, what does this mean for cybersecurity management and IT security? Remote working often calls for a flexible-office space that employees can work from when business infrastructure like photocopiers and printers are required. An important part of the offering from flexspace providers like Regus will usually include a disaster recovery plan that works in tandem with a company’s flexible-working policy without compromising on workplace security. It means that an employee can enjoy the freedom and practicality that comes with being mobile, while their employer can rest easy in the knowledge that, should something like a cybersecurity breach happen, a plan is in place. Regus Dynamic and Pronto Recovery, which provide a clean restart to get staff back online while your network is rebuilt, is just one example of the comprehensive safety net that can be included in a fully functional disaster recovery plan.
Using a coworking or shared-office space naturally raises concerns that company data can be accessed by the other tenants in the building. But that couldn’t be further from the truth – there’s even a case to made that client privacy is more closely guarded than it might be in its own dedicated premises. Ran Haer is Regus’ Senior Network Consultant and keeping clients safe in the ether is his top priority. “We work with lots of leading vendors in networking and security on a daily basis,” he tells Regus Magazine. “Our sole objective is to ensure that we are equipped with the right tools and equipment to ensure our customers work in secure environments. Plus, we’re always pushing our providers for new ideas how to make our networks more secure.”
Client privacy is so closely guarded that not even Regus sees their data. “While we don’t touch our clients’ data, we do provide them with different network services, all of which have security embedded,” Haer confirms. Networks are tightly controlled and monitored: thanks to various security protocols, there’s no way for one company to connect to another’s. “Even though our offices have different companies using the same network, we make sure that one client can’t connect to another on the network,” he adds.
The lengths Regus goes to are almost worthy of a spy novel when you consider the processes involved to keep clients safe online. The workspace-provider employs a team of “penetration testers” – or professional hackers, in layman’s terms – who are tasked not only with testing but also with trying to break into a centre’s cyber systems. “If a new service is installed or product released, we’ll bring in the team and they’ll try to break it,” the computer specialist reveals. This is just one example of how the Regus mantra for taking care of tenants spreads across all aspects of the relationship: nothing comes as standard when it comes to the safety and security of a client’s business.
Whether an employee is inside or outside the office, IT security training is always a good idea – and knowing the risks will help in the quest to minimise any potential threats. In a flexwork space like Regus, those risks are already taken care of so there’s one less thing to deal with. Instead, you and your employees can get on and do what you do best: carry on growing your business.