During the holidays, many employees take time off to be with their families. In order to make holiday seasons easier for staff members, many administrators will allow IT workers to access the network remotely. In this way, employees can travel while still completing mission-critical business tasks on time.
While remote access offers flexibility during the holiday season, there is one aspect that company leaders cannot afford to overlook: network monitoring. With employees logging in to important resources from locations outside of the secure network, IT administrators must ensure that only authorized employees can view the enterprise's sensitive information. This makes remote network monitoring essential at this time of year.
Here are some best practices as IT administrators prepare their network for remote access:
Ensure Security With Individual Authentication Credentials
Each employee should have an individual username and password to access the network. IT managers should also consider adding -factor authentication—a process involving a single-use code sent to a mobile device or separate account in addition to regular authentication credentials—to further prevent any unauthorized access to the network. In this way, supervisors can see who is accessing the network based on their usernames.
Consider Additional Monitoring
Many companies have network monitoring processes in place throughout the year. However, WildPackets notes that, during the holidays, it may be necessary to increase the scope of network monitoring to ensure that all access points are under a watchful eye. WildPackets suggests checking with different departments to see what resources they utilize during the holiday season, since increased client demands may require the use of systems that may not be regularly used at other times of the year.
"During the holiday season, you may need to monitor some otherwise obscure servers, servers that you usually don't regularly have to pay attention to," WildPackets states. "It's going to be end-of-the-year crunch time, and all IT hands will be on deck to support critical business functions."
Test the Network Monitoring System
Test all of the components of your network monitoring solution for functionality. In addition, IT administrators should establish and test alerts so that the correct notification will be sent to the right person and the issue can be quickly resolved if something happens to go wrong during the holidays. This not only helps to guarantee the performance of the overall network, but testing also helps to ensure that remote workers always have access to the resources they need to work from outside the office.
Comprehensive network & bandwidth performance monitoring software is an important part of implementing remote access plans for the holiday season. Network monitoring software like Intermapper keeps you informed of the real-time activity across your entire network. With Intermapper Remote Access, an easy-to-use add-on product that gives you or your team web access to your network monitoring software for on-the-go or mobile monitoring, even your IT administrators can monitor the network for safekeeping from anywhere in the world.