How to Get Your Office Onboard with Security Protocols
At home we do everything possible to ensure the safety of everyone and everything inside. From not answering the door to strangers to leaving the lights on when we go away and knowing the code to the alarm system everyone in the house is up to date on the security protocol.
We think we know the drill back to front and common sense suggests that we should be able to excel at all security-related things, yet, when it comes to taking precautions at the office, most aren’t working.
The more people involved the more diluted security measures become. Individually we may be experts, but en masse we need a refresher course on maintaining office security. Here are some key tips for keeping your business safe.
Before you can expect people to follow implemented security measures they have to understand why they must. Hold a security debrief with your office. Explain where they are doing well, where there are concerns and why these concerns are valid. Present several scenarios involving different security measures and see which ones your office responds to best. From this point forward schedule regular meetings to discuss how the office is meeting the security goals and discuss any upcoming changes to the protocol.
Keep the lines of communication secure
In line with including the office in security discussions it is important to convey to all employees that the lines of communication are always open to questions, concerns or suggestions, but they have to be secure lines. Put a blanket ban on communication through private email addresses, instant messaging programs, social media or any other non-company related field. By keeping communication strictly to corporate email addresses or telephone lines the chances of information being accidentally leaked.
Know your virus vulnerabilities
We have all seen the commercials transmitting dire warning about how your television, radio and now Xbox are windows into your home from which predators can reach your children. Well, it turns out that they can break into your office too – through your multifunction printer. Though our handy MFP devices have nearly single-handedly solved all our printing woes they do come with their own set of concerns. Being connected to a network means a surge in convenience, but it also means that there is a new backdoor into your company. Read up on all the security measures you should be taking with your MFP to make sure that it stays virus free. Some of the security strategies can include SSL encryption, rules based printing, access cards, codes and usage tracking for printing. These features will monitor all activity on or through your device network making it far easier for you (or your IT team) to flag irregularities and spot problems that could be related to a virus or hacker.
Even the most well laid strategies can be thwarted which is why every great general has contingency plans. Anticipate where the system might fail or where a security breach could happen and come up with a broad recovery plan. It’s the old “plan for the best, prepare for the worst” mentality that will keep your company cool and calm during a crisis. If everyone knows what to do and in what order to do it in the recovery and repair time will be lessened and you can get back to business.
This is a tough choice to make and one each office has to make individually: to allow working from home or not. It’s a difficult choice because on the one hand having an office full of employees who have had to drag themselves in from remote locations and arrive exhausted and stressed does not facilitate a happy office, however the farther away your employees are the harder it is to maintain totally confidential and secure practices. If you believe that your office can find a way to accommodate the at-homers then make sure you follow the suggestions for security debriefing and, if not, again explain why they need to come in and how it is an unfortunate, yet essential part of maintaining office security.
There are many variables when it comes to deciding on your office security policies, but if you keep everyone on the same page and leave room for flexibility and improvement then you will likely find a method that works and keeps all your employees and files safe.
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