COVID-19 Response Plan

IT in the Era of COVID-19

80 to 90% of activity occurs outside the network.

The coronavirus (COVID-19) situation is evolving rapidly. HDTech is prepared to help you navigate potential business challenges related to your technology and we are setting up H&D to ensure that we have the support and techs you need to run your businesses effectively. For disaster recovery reasons we are instituting a work from home system for H&D Technicians. Most of our support is via phone and remote access so we don’t believe there should be any impact to our clients. We ask your understanding as we have many more calls and emails coming in regarding questions about virus response-we will be getting to them all as quickly as possible. If your request is not urgent please used help@hdtech.com to start a ticket.

More and more companies are offering the option of working from home — or even requiring it, in an effort to keep their workforce healthy in the face of the spreading novel coronavirus. Your company may be in this situation right now and wondering, what are the risks of working from home, or another remote location? What kind of security or privacy issues could this introduce for our company? How do we mitigate these concerns? How do we setup remote workers? Below is a list of items to consider:

  1. Use VPN or Virtual Private Network is designed to make internet usage safer, more convenient, and private. Everything between you and the service or site you are using is encrypted, making it appear indecipherable to anyone watching the data stream. A VPN disguises where you are. This is the most secure way for you employees to access your server and continue working without risk to your network. All of our clients have VPN capable firewalls, and if VPN is not already setup, please let us know if you need it by emailing help@hdtech.com.
  2. Note: Using USB devices to transport files from the office to work on at home is a huge risk. Not only is your data at risk for being “out in the wild” but the chance of infecting your network with malware is a possibility when the device is plugged back into the office computer. Accordingly, we are going to block all USB devices from all client systems, and administrative/executive staff can advise us to permit specific users where necessary.
  3. File share programs like Dropbox are not secure-unless properly setup. They are a popular target for cyber attacks. Placing critical data on them (social security number, financial information, etc.) is high risk. Using VPN technology, we can setup secure access to office PC’s where sensitive files can be accessed securely. Encourage staff to only use dropbox like systems for non-sensitive information.
  • Your office phones can be configured to ring on cell phones, or home VOIP phones can be installed-if you have VOIP and in some cases regular phone lines as well. Please call and talk to Tom if you need support on this.
  • MFA –multi factor authentication. Where possible we would like to setup MFA for remote users. This would ensure that the VPN connection logins remain secure. We will be giving more information on this over the coming days.
  • Consider using Office 365 Teams for meetings. If you need help with this please email help@hdtech.com to start a support ticket.
  • Using Zoom for teleconferencing. For those of our clients on Ring Central you already have this capability. If you need help with setting up group online meeting resources please email help@hdtech.com to start a ticket.

Please note regarding onsite visits:

We are stopping regular onsite visits for the time being and will advise on a case by case basis if this is required. If you have PCs that need to be installed we will be figuring out how to accomplish this over the coming days. We have to ensure that our techs stay healthy in order that we continue to give great service to everyone-so we are decreasing any contact they have with the outside world. Emergency onsite visits-servers, network, internet outages- will not be effected by this ban.

We will all get through this trying time by working together and keeping communication high. H&D will endeavor to help everyone ensure their technology and remote technologies specifically, help everyone to weather this unprecedented storm.

Thanks.

Tom Hermstad