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Post Pandemic IT Strategy for the Road Ahead: Security, Cloud and Operational Considerations + Webinar Recap

By Amisha Shah | Tuesday, June 30th, 2020
Today marks the last day of what shall be remembered as the ‘pandemic quarter’ - which triggered businesses globally to shift to a remote working model almost overnight. Just as the crisis called for investment firms and their employees to adapt in the moment, it is important to start thinking ahead to prepare for the post-pandemic future.
 
Having tested remote working for a prolonged period of time, now is a good time to reflect on lessons learnt from a security, cloud and operational standpoint, and implement any necessary changes for better future crisis management.
 
In a recent webinar with guest speakers from AIMA and Odey Asset Management, our technology experts explored key technology and operational takeaways from the pandemic and shared guidance on building an agile infrastructure for the road ahead. Today’s blog will summarise key takeaways from the discussion in a checklist format, ready for investment firms to consider as part of their IT strategy planning process. The full replay below can also be watched below.

Preparing your IT infrastructure for a large scale roll out of remote working

  • Ensure you have appropriate remote access solutions in place to support remote working, we recommend a virtualised desktop infrastructure for a seamless experience.
  • Consider the different security elements of remote working to effectively safeguard assets and provide employee training to support this.
  • System bandwidth needs careful consideration when planning for remote working on a large scale, do you need to upscale?
  • Firms are advised to think about how they will enforce remote user support.
  • Create guidelines around remote working for employees, with good practices and any strict policies made clear to avoid confusion.
  • Spend time to define access controls at an individual level to ensure complete control over the access of sensitive data and organisational funds.

Creating an agile operational strategy to rapidly respond to changing circumstances

  • Start with a clear vision of what you need to operate your business as usual.
  • Get buy-in from the investors, senior management, C-Suite and any other key decision makers to support the changes needed to your existing infrastructure, as well as the investment required for implementation.  
  • Establish agile working methods and continue to test them on a regular basis to ensure effectiveness.
  • Lastly, operate with a modern technology architecture, it will support you in good and bad times!

Leveraging the cloud and utilising SaaS-based solutions to power connectivity and collaboration

  • Firms are advised to seriously consider cloud and SaaS infrastructures, they are the future of modern working because due to the flexibility they offer, which stems from a lack of reliance on computer or data storage.
  • Another plus point is that security is in-built with cloud and SaaS solutions, and completely robust at application layer level.
  • Investment firms are encouraged to consider a virtual desktop infrastructure which is proven to be a highly secure remote working method. It also offers scalability whilst being cost effective.
  • There are many tools such as Teams, SharePoint and OneDrive to be leveraged with a cloud infrastructure, to ensure collaboration is never compromised. 

Cybersecurity essentials to safeguard onsite and remote working

  • Firms should not overlook simulated phishing and online training for employees at regular intervals.
  • SIEM and Dark Web Monitoring should form a part of your overall cybersecurity strategy to ensure a layered approach is being implemented.
  • Home network security best practices should include web filtering on remote networks and firewalls for company segments.
  • MFA should be implemented on all systems and separate/strong passwords are heavily recommended.

Watch the webinar replay to listen in on the full discussion and dive deeper into each of the considerations listed above! 

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