IT | Security

Trust But Verify: Automated Solutions Keep Remote Employees Productive and Secure

By: Jason Short | 4/13/2020

How endpoint management keeps employees secure and helps IT rest easy

As our work from home “experiment” drags on, IT is probably wondering how all those laptops are doing. Are OS updates getting done? Have people messed up their VPN settings, or worse do they think their VPN settings are okay, but have they been tampered with? What about installing apps? Visiting suspect sites? People aren’t behind the firewall most of the time, so the usual filters and blocks aren’t there to protect people (and the network).

This could become a real IT disaster in the making. There is a solution, and as Reagan said: Trust, but verify.

Trust your employees, but not blindly

One of the biggest challenges for making working from home work is building trust. I touched on trust in my last post on leading IT teams remotely. The twice daily update meetings and über project dashboard so everyone could see what was going on. It took a while for everyone to trust people we’re working in place and not Netflixing in place.

In the office, it’s easy to trust that people aren’t going to install software willy-nilly. There is a certain amount of “everyone is watching” that keeps things in check. At home is another matter. Left to our own devices or left to troubleshoot problems ourselves—“oh I can fix that glitch no problem…”—everyone can get into trouble.

Here’s where the “verify” part comes in.

Proactive protection solutions for remote employees

One of the biggest challenges of remote work is making sure everyone keeps their computers up to date and secure. From OS updates to VPN settings, and app restrictions to malware protection, maintenance tasks that are simple while everyone is connected to the company network become cumbersome when employees pop on and off your VPN and go on and offline seemingly randomly. Even the most well-meaning and tech savvy people forget to run system updates.

The last update security update for MacOS didn’t get installed on my personal machine right away. I got the prompt to install it, but “oh jeez I have to restart and I have to get this thing done right now, I’ll do it tomorrow…” “Tomorrow” became over a week. Thankfully nothing bad happened because I ignored an update for a while—but it could have. OS updates are just part of the puzzle. What about making sure virus scans haven’t been disabled? What about someone accidentally messing up their VPN settings (hey it happens to all of us once in a while)? How do you deal with those issues?

Absolute has two solutions for these problems:

  1. Absolute Reach gives IT hundreds of pre-built scripts to push and run on employee machines for regular and critical maintenance
  2. Absolute Application Persistence for VPN ensures everyone is connecting to your network securely with self-healing VPN settings

If you’re an existing Absolute customer, both of these solutions are available at no cost until August 31st. Now is not the time for IT to be worrying if people aren’t keeping their machines secure while at home. IT’s job is hard enough as it is—been there, done that as front line tech support, thank you very much—without wondering if people trying “that fun new app” on their work machine has opened a security hole in the network.

Absolute Reach keeps things in shape

With over 130 scripts available you can make sure patches are applied, security settings are still secure, and policies are still in place. And employees don’t have to be connected to your network for it to work. Absolute extends IT’s reach to help remote employees stay safe and secure—and by extension your company, your network, and your data.

Learn more about Absolute Reach and how current customers can add it for free right now.

Persistence pays off for VPN connections

Your VPN is a critical part securing remote employees—not just when they are working from home, but traveling, at a conference, or any other untrusted network too. Absolute Application Persistence for VPN keeps that VPN set up and configured on every remote machine automatically. You don’t have to worry if someone deletes the VPN because they think that’s why the laptop won’t connect to Wi-Fi. You don’t have to worry if someone accidentally installs some malware or spyware that tries to circumvent, man-in-the-middle, or outright remove VPN settings and replace them with theirs.

Application Persistence for VPN resets, self-heals, and protects the best protection your network has—your VPN.

Learn how Absolute customers can start using Application Persistence for VPN right now.

Business continuity for when business unusual is becoming business as usual

At Absolute we’re all in the same boat you are. These past few weeks have put everything in our lives under stress. Businesses are trying to make the best of things and stay running. Many of us are working from home for the first time and finding it tough to work and be parents. Stress all around and no easy answers for when it will all be over.

We can’t fix the stress everyone is under. Not even close. What we can do though is help with tools and solutions to help businesses keep running and running securely.

Stay safe out there.