The COVID-19 coronavirus has become a global issue that threatens to cripple the world’s economy and destroy businesses. As such, business continuity is one of the foremost discussed agendas of all organisations, regardless of their size and nature.
COVID-19 has already brought much business to a complete stand-still. In this situation, it is crucial for the business to react as quickly as possible in order to minimise impacts and other associated risks, and at the same time, prepare the organisation for the further development of COVID-19 pandemic and its possible scenarios.
The leadership of a company holds the responsibility of implementing basic emergency measures as described or recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO) or their country’s health authority, which might include sterilisation of the offices, instruct employees to maintain social distancing or it could be travel restrictions, etc. Including the above mentioned initial fundamental measures, the following risks are vital to be assessed.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to companies around the world to adopt a fully remote team to avoid physical contact. However, this poses its own set of problems, especially with regards to technology and security. Organisations need to ensure that all components of infrastructure are functioning correctly to support their remote workers. Things like ensuring bandwidth availability to connect to Head office resources and modes of online communication are a must.
Data security is always critical whether users are residing in the office space or remotely. Organisations should ensure that appropriate measures are taken to safeguard the documentation of strict data protection policies. Having a back-up in the form of data loss prevention systems would also help greatly.
With the growth of pandemic, threats are also on the rise and organisations are being targeted. Therefore, protection of IT assets is necessary. Especially since most companies are working completely online at the moment, the risk of potential cyber criminals compromising the security of a company is high. Organisations should be monitoring publicly published applications and ensure the security controls. Reviewing antivirus programmes and online security protocols are also recommended to prevent any potential breaches.
Employees are key stakeholders of any company and should not be ignored. Take supportive measure to motivate and guide them how to deal with this kind of situation. Keep employees well informed with all the necessary information about the country laws related to COVID-19. Keep employees well informed with all the necessary information about the country laws related to COVID-19.
Business and Operational Risks
Make an arrangement of work permits and other access related permits for employees, who require physical access. Draft all potential issues and countermeasures related to supply chain. Closely evaluate all those options from where cost can be optimised. Organisations should establish plans to ensure the business operations and list down all scenarios and their countermeasures which can affect business operations.