May 05, 2020
With Distributed Workforce Transformation in Overdrive, Agencies Focus on Access and SecurityBy Egon Rinderer
Public and private sector organizations alike are working to scale teleworking capabilities to accommodate a record number of remote employees. Simultaneously, the spike in need for financial relief through the CARES Act is straining the Internal Revenue Service systems and causing website and app outages due to high traffic volume associated with the distribution of stimulus checks and Department of Labor systems across the country. Many of those systems are built on aging software running on decades-old coding language and are overloaded with the increase in unemployment filings. There’s unprecedented pressure on overburdened IT infrastructure, and federal agencies are working to quickly scale to maintain operations while also remaining secure.
In a recent Government CIO Magazine article, I discuss how current federal modernization efforts will bring long-term, positive impacts. And, I had the opportunity to speak with MeriTalk about steps agencies can take to best support the federal workforce and citizen services.
Challenges of a distributed workforce
Historically, organizations plan for two to four percent of their workforce to work remotely at any given time. Today, telework has increased to 80 to 90 percent of the workforce across both federal agencies and commercial companies. This sudden rise presents challenges for organizations that were already struggling with basic blocking and tackling of endpoint hygiene, system patching, and compliance before the crisis hit. When you factor in Bring-Your-Own-Devices (BYOD) alongside agency owned assets operating outside the protective perimeter of the enterprise local area network (LAN), there is a massive increase in overall risk.
How Unified Endpoint Management and Security helps
Tanium takes a holistic approach, offering a unified endpoint management and security platform that empowers federal leaders to reduce risk through improved visibility and control over the estate, regardless of where the asset is located. As a result, teams can identify risks and vulnerabilities, and prioritize those risks across the environment. Most importantly, they can take action to respond in near real time and remediate endpoint anywhere on the planet.
Take the next steps
We have developed a unique Work-from-Home Runbook that offers step-by-step instructions to effectively manage WFH infrastructure and bring BYOD devices onto the network with limited disruption. This includes using Tanium to move management and endpoint security traffic out of the VPN while helping to maintain security to relieve congestion (and the associated latency/poor user experience), as well as helping to ensure basic cyber hygiene and security functions are strong.