Technology Unwrapped

The most important technology concepts, strategies and actions uncovered for your business.

Do I Need a Firewall When Employees Work Remotely?

With more small businesses turning to a remote workforce, protecting business operations and data is crucial. As a business owner, you most likely will need multiple firewalls to provide the necessary security required by remote access. This includes both an on-premise appliance and software that runs on the remote computers your employees use at home. 

Evaluating the use and risk of your IT solutions will go a long way in deciding which firewalls you need so you can get the most benefits of firewall protection. 

Determine Which Firewalls You Need 

It’s important to know the difference between a basic firewall and a multi-layered, robust threat-management firewall. Not surprisingly, there’s also a big difference in cost between the two. That’s why IT service providers do a thorough evaluation of your systems to see which best fits your business needs. They will create a profile of your users, the amount of data on your network and the operations taking place at your facility. 

If users are no longer behind the firewall at your physical office, it’s still important to maintain those protections and level of security. Therefore, a provider will determine what other software and applications are necessary to run on company-owned devices — laptops, desktops, tablets, etc. — that your employees take home to provide those same firewall protections.

A managed IT service provider can help you figure out which firewall solutions make the most sense based on the security and budget requirements of your organization. 

benefits of firewall protection

Examine the Risks

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the biggest risk posed by remote workers arose when they connected to a public network. Now, you have those same considerations when employees take their computers home, because they may have multiple devices on the same Wi-Fi network. All of these devices add potential vulnerabilities to other devices on the network because each one can be hacked. 

Therefore, you need to apply protection at the device level, instead of the network level, to protect your company-owned devices and access to your business network. A managed IT security system through the utilization of layered, comprehensive cyber security strategies.

In addition, when devices leave the office, there’s always the risk of loss or theft. As such, it’s important to secure data on that device so it cannot be accessed by others who aren’t in the system. This requires encrypting hard drives to restrict access. Similarly, backup of data from a remote location requires protection that a firewall can provide. 

Another consideration is how to protect workflow and functionality. When your employees are working from home, what happens if their devices break down and they can’t work? If you don’t maintain the life cycle of those devices with a warranty, you risk losing productivity. 

How CoreTech Can Help 

Enabling a remote workforce and protecting their networks and data is not new for CoreTech. For years, we have been doing this for clients with mobile users or remote staff members. 

Furthermore, we have deployed the same tools to our own team, so we are well versed in how they work and perform. We use that firsthand experience to make recommendations on which IT solutions will benefit your business the most. We are keenly aware of how security systems, policies and protocols can impact user experience and productivity, so we know how to balance and manage them. This ensures that we provide the appropriate level of protection and flexibility for our clients.

Our team supports remote and mobile users, and we have the ability to manage, monitor and maintain devices when they're not at the office. 

To find out more about the benefits of firewall protection and which firewalls your business needs, contact CoreTech today.

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Topics: Equipment Purchases, Network Security