Achieving Safe, Secure, and Continuous Operations

The coronavirus pandemic—and the accompanying need for government organizations to rapidly implement virtual work arrangements—caught most by surprise. While some agencies were able to make the transition smoothly, others, such as those who deal with classified information, encountered particular difficulties. In a recent article for GCN, Eric Trexler explores avenues for government organizations seeking to solidify their ability to remain continually operational in the face of crises such as the one we are currently experiencing.

“COVID-19 forced a rapid and lasting change not only in the way we work, but how we expect to work and what organizations will accept in how that work is performed,” writes Trexler. Moving forward, government operations need to explore solutions that draw on new IT investments and software-as-a-service technologies in order to enable continuity.

Trexler suggests the following strategies:

  • Use a cloud access security broker (CASB), rather than a virtual private network (VPN), to monitor users, especially those with access to sensitive information. CASB is a zero-trust network access technology that alerts administrators to suspicious activity such as screenshotting, data transfers to outside sources, and other anomalous behavior. These are areas already monitored in-office by many government organizations.
  • Implement remote browser isolation when users access the web in order to reduce the risk of compromise.
  • Keep your team members up to date on all user verification protocols in order to protect against social engineering tactics used by hackers to obtain sensitive passwords and information.

It comes down to this: telework is feasible, but oftentimes your users are your biggest liability. Employing technologies that enable them to work remotely while still keeping your organization secure is the key to establishing continuity of operations within your organization. For more details, click here to read the article in full at GCN.