Coronavirus UK: How transitioning to secure cloud computing can support successful remote-working

There have been endless news reports surrounding coronavirus or COVID-19, and with the World Health Organization recently declaring the disease a pandemic, businesses are likely to be concerned about what this means for employees and the impact of potential restrictions set out to limit its spread.

As we’ve seen in other countries, such as China, Italy and Denmark, changes to the general public’s daily lives are to be expected in order to delay the virus’ spread. The latest deliberation from PM, Boris Johnson, says that everyone should avoid offices, pubs and travelling, advising citizens to work from home (remote working) where possible. He has stated that should the situation worsen; this may be imposed for all companies with the capability to sustain such working conditions. With global companies, such as Google and JPMorgan already suggesting staff avoid the office, it only makes sense to be aware and prepared.

The burgeoning threat of Coronavirus to the global economy is forcing many organisations to review their business continuity planning. We fully appreciate the impact of the Coronavirus outbreak on businesses, particularly since the latest Government advice recommending home-working. METCloud has received an overwhelming increase in support calls and a surge of new enquiries to assist companies in building an appropriate secure infrastructure for their needs.

We strongly recommend that organisations refer to remote working guidance by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC).

Remote working is easier than ever to implement

Luckily, it has never been easier to set up your staff for working off-site. In fact, many companies opt for this system ordinarily to allow their workforce more flexibility – this is where the benefits of cloud-based computing come in. Cloud computing will enable members of your organisation to share, create, store and access data via servers that function across the internet, from anywhere, at any time. This can be managed by companies, such as METCloud, who can provide tailored support, charged on a subscription-style basis, saving your business money along the way – a plus point, given the effect coronavirus is having on the world’s economy.

Cloud-computing is more secure than many believe

For most, the first concern regarding cloud-computing is likely to be about security, especially as workers may be connecting from their own devices. Of course, the last thing anyone would want is for sensitive information getting into the wrong hands. However, cloud computing is highly secure when appropriately implemented.

By setting up a private cloud with password-protected applications and documents, only those with authorised access can enter. Secondly, tools such as Next-Generation Firewalls and Anti-Malware Protection offer added support to filter out unauthorised access attempts and harmful viruses. Security Operations as a Service (SOaaS) allows for 24/7 observation of the network by cybersecurity specialists, who will consistently monitor and act against all threats.

It is important to note that an essential part of keeping your cloud system secure is by ensuring that the company and the staff are aware of what threats may look like and how best to practice cybersecurity. A recent Gartner report stated that through 2025, at least 99% of cloud security failures will be due to user errors. Therefore, it is vital that all staff are given security awareness training before going remote, with regular refreshers.

Remote working through the cloud can improve collaboration

Poor communication is often a primary worry when it comes to remote working too. However, with the various technologies available today, this needn’t be regarded as a significant stumbling block. To the contrary, cloud-computing can make for a more organised and efficient way of working. For example, documents can be easily accessed and amended in a centralised location, which means overall visibility and the ability to work collaboratively in real-time, no matter location. This could potentially strengthen the exchange of ideas and collaboration across the team, as opposed to restricting it. In addition, the cloud offers higher data capacity compared to email servers which means larger files, such as video and audio, can be shared without the worry of the maximum file limit being exceeded. This solves a wealth of distribution issues and can save a significant amount of time and frustration for you and your team members.

All in all, cloud computing in general can grant a smooth transition from office-based work to home-based. In many ways, it can provide tremendous benefits, improve overall communication and security practices within the business.

If you are ready to make the move to cloud-based computing and have any further questions regarding packages or are just in need of some advice be sure to contact our team of experts on 0121 227 0730 or email at sales@metcloud.com