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Do you have a sanitized IT environment?

Key questions for IT health

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When you hear “IT sanitization” or similar, you might think it literally translates to clean surroundings. And while it is good to keep your environment picked up, in the context of IT, it means how safe and free of security threats is your IT infrastructure? Especially today with the rise and reliance on remote networking caused by COVID-19.

“Sanitization” can involve many steps, though fortunately they’re not too complex and anyone can do them. It’s a good way to check local cybersecurity health on the remote level, which by proxy, keeps your industry safer from larger attacks. In a way, you can think of them as smaller-scale penetration tests.

To best understand if your IT environment, workplace, and/or remote environment is sanitized, it’s a good idea to answer a basic series of questions.

Important IT sanitization questions

How secure is data in transfer?

The transportation of critical data and information is among one of the key points regarding IT safety. When accessed, transferred, and modified, where and how is this conducted? Obviously, sanitization correlates to the significance of the data, therefore a direct message to a coworker doesn’t have the same weight as a critical project file.

But, that doesn’t mean caution isn’t important at each step. Is MFA (multi-factor authentication) set up on all relevant business devices? Is data encrypted if it’s stored on cloud servers or different data nodes? These are questions both relevant to the worker and expert IT staff.

How healthy are passcodes?

Passwords are of course a critical part of cybersecurity. They are one of the first points of defense in IT, especially in remote working environments. If passwords are easily guessable, then threat actors will have an easier time breaking into networks, mainly because they deploy automated methods like botnets and brute force attacks.

Is MFA set up?

Multi-factor or TFA authentication methods provide an additional layer of security with ways to verify passcodes and people. In a remote environment where verifying identity is crucial, MFA is an important piece of maintaining good IT health. If your remote solution (or working solution, period) does not have MFA set up in some capacity, it’s recommended to adopt this ASAP.

How familiar is staff with social engineering/phishing techniques?

One of the most dangerous and trusted methods threat actors use to bypass defenses is phishing. Social engineering scams use false information to trick individuals, so, workers need to know their characteristics. In fact, many defense practices handled by IT are now pushed to remote staff, so they must be prepared for any scenario. 

Staff needs education about phishing techniques and how to stay aware of them. This also translates to keeping tabs on current events to understand what malicious hackers use for subject lines.

How are remote workers accessing data?

This question is aimed at the devices in use. Do workers use their own systems, or is it provided by the company? Personal devices provide greater risk since they likely contain more programs with potentially unsecured passcodes or points of entry. A hacker only needs access to one device to break into a company network, so practice caution.

How healthy is your current IT sanitation?

After answering some of these questions, you should have a clearer idea of how “healthy” your IT and remote working environment is. Similar to a cybersecurity score, it’s important to see where your enterprise is strong and weak and make proper decisions accordingly.

If you still need assistance cultivating a sanitized IT environment, consider getting help from an MSP. Bytagig is ready to help, and you can learn more by contacting us today.

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