Does your business have employees who work remotely? Chances are, the answer is yes. From 2005 to 2018, the number of remote employees grew by more than 170% — and that was before COVID-19. The pandemic has only served to increase the number of staff working from home. That trend is likely to continue even after the pandemic eases.
The good news? Remote staff could save your business in the long run, as you can pay less in overhead and may be able to choose a smaller office footprint. Many professionals appreciate this option and, in fact, prefer to work remotely — at least part of the time. After all, working from home offers flexibility as well as time and monetary savings.
However, there are drawbacks to having remote workers. You may find it more difficult to manage remote employees. They, in turn, might feel isolated or adrift from their colleagues. An even bigger potential danger is that remote workers increase the risk of data loss — whether due to a data breach; malware; or even the loss of remote equipment because of a fire, theft or flood. The accompanying resource shares statistics about these risks and tips on implementing a backup and disaster recovery (BDR) plan for your remote staff.
There are millions of additional devices connected to company networks from spots around the world. That means a robust BDR plan is more important to your business than ever. This is especially evident because it’s likely that at least some of your remote employees are working on home networks that may not be password-protected. Using work devices for personal activities further increases the risk to your company.
To help offset this risk, regularly review your company’s BDR plan to verify that your recovery time objectives (RTO) and recovery point objectives (RPO) are current. Also make sure you can execute them with your current backup and recovery technologies.
If you have G Suite or Microsoft Office 365 and are using software as a service (SaaS) applications, your data may be backed up for just 30 days. Even then, there is no guarantee that your data will be restored. That means you should conduct frequent backups of your remote workers’ devices to every employee’s local external drive and/or your corporate network and the cloud.
Duplicate your backups to make sure that you can always recover your data — maintaining numerous copies of data that are stored on multiple devices and locations. Be sure to continuously replicate data to the cloud and another location (e.g., your company server) to protect your files and reduce the risk to data.