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Our security checklist for online collaboration tools

Posted by Taylor Cheetham on Apr 28, 2020 4:16:17 PM
Taylor Cheetham

Our security checklist for online collaboration tools

Australian businesses are continuing to move their business operations to the cloud, as part of their continuity plan to reduce the further economic loss caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

This is enabling a large volume of Australia's workforce to work remotely – to comply with the current social distancing restrictions.

As a result, there has been an increase in demand for online collaboration solutions that allow audio / video calling, real-time chat and file sharing.

The rise in demand has meant that it is more important that businesses using online collaboration tools do so securely to mitigate against the evolving cybersecurity risks.

Here is our security checklist for online collaboration tools:

 

Secure online collaboration tools

  • Ensure a secure network connection – Also ensure that your VPN is security patched.
  • Check that the provider offers end-to-end encryption, as some online collaboration tools encrypt chat by default but not video and audio.
  • Ensure that the default security settings of the online collaboration tool are configured correctly to meet your organisation's security needs.
  • Apply all security patches to devices that will be utilising the collaboration tool – including personal devices.

Surrounding Environment

  • Always use a private location for meetings where possible.
  • Improve confidentiality by using headphones in shared / public areas.
  • Encourage that all microphones are muted when participants aren't actively speaking to eliminate the risk of oversharing confidential background noise.
  • Ensure the video only captures the participants face, enable the background blurring feature where possible.

Protected Access

  • Be mindful of how meeting details and access credentials are sent out, sending them separately via email or encrypted messaging apps is best practice. It is also essential that the access credentials are updated periodically.
  • Require participants to enter a password to join the meeting – this is sometimes turned off by default.
  • Enabling waiting room controls puts users on hold in a virtual waiting room until the host approves them to enter the meeting.
  • It can be hard to identify participants who join via a mobile phone, ensure to ask any unknown participants of their identity.
  • Locking the meeting when everyone has joined ensures that no one else can enter.

Sharing screens & files

  • Avoid sharing more content than intended by only screen sharing an individual application and not the devices entire screen.
  • Don't use online collaboration tools for private messages and to disclose personal information.

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AUTHOR

Taylor Cheetham

Marketing Assistant

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