Lockdown requirements have meant an unprecedented increase in the number of employees working from home. We quickly rolled out the necessary measures to ensure efficient, secure operations across the organization. We also made all the necessary adjustments to our infrastructure, systems, employee services and cybersecurity practices. And we are closely monitoring the situation to maintain an optimal level of service and to address needs as they arise.
Infrastructure and systems
Before the lockdown, we analyzed the capacity of our various technology systems. To meet the considerably higher demands on our data centres in Montreal and Toronto as a result of remote work requirements, we made a number of major adjustments designed to:
- Increase the capacity of Internet connections: We significantly increased the bandwidth of our systems at the start of the lockdown, partially to accommodate more VPN users.
- Boost the robustness of remote access systems: The VPN enables employees to access Ivanhoé Cambridge’s data and information more quickly from outside our offices, in addition to being safer.
- Add data storage capacity.
- Accelerate the adoption of online work tools.
We moved up the implementation of our Cisco Webex online meeting software by five weeks, so it would be operational on the first day employees started working from home. We also produced a number of additional training videos, both for Cisco Webex and Microsoft 365, to make the transition even smoother for employees.
IT services for employees
Our approaches to providing remote support to employees were adjusted to respond to the various needs of the organization and better meet the increase in demand. This included a review of our processes for ordering new hardware and replacing defective equipment to ensure optimal working conditions for everyone. We also redesigned our onboarding process for new employees and interns to facilitate their integration.
With the high number of employees working remotely, we need to be more vigilant about cybersecurity risks. We therefore revised our safeguards:
- We deployed a new Internet filter directly at each workstation to detect security threats and to provide the same level of protection as for our corporate network. This tool greatly reduces the risk of email phishing attacks.
- We set up tools to update workstations remotely.
- We made additional efforts to make our employees, executives and crisis managers more aware of cybersecurity and confidentiality.