When it comes to the topic of cybersecurity, much has been written about the need for consumers to protect themselves and their personal information. In a world where digital commerce has become the norm rather than the exception, most people understand the need for basic precautions such as keeping passwords private, shopping only on secure websites, and shielding the keypad when entering their PIN on a credit card terminal. So, why is it that we fail to take the same care when it comes to professional practices like video conferencing?
While interactive technology and advanced software make collaboration applications easy to operate, it is critical to understand that convenience of remote video conferencing comes with an inherent data risk. Whether you use video conferencing to conduct the occasional leadership summit, executive planning session, or routine enterprise-level meetings, the following security recommendations will not only help you keep your shared information safe, they will enable you to create a more welcoming user experience as well.
1. Start by securing your network.
Regardless of the devices you use to conduct a video conference, they will all communicate over your network, which is designed to allow multiple users to conveniently share data with other computers. Without proper security, anyone who gains access to your network can obtain information shared on that network—this includes sensitive business details shared via video conference. From encrypted passwords to customized firewalls, there are multiple factors to consider when it comes to establishing a secure network. For tips on safeguarding your business network, review these practical recommendations from the experts at Computerworld.
2. Assess your video conferencing system.
Unlike fine wine, video conferencing systems do not get better with age. As a general rule of thumb, systems more than five years old should be reassessed for potential security risks. In this assessment, pay particular attention to security aspects such as data management, encryption capabilities, and user access procedures. Some may be able to be updated to provide sufficient protection, but others may require total replacement in order to protect sensitive data and information.
3. Don’t rely on defaults.
When you upgrade your network equipment or conferencing technology, it can be tempting to use default passwords and settings in an attempt to get it up and running as quickly as possible. Resist that urge. Since many corporate video conferences involve the sharing of sensitive, proprietary information, it is essential for organizers to do more than the bare minimum to protect the integrity of the company’s data. With some estimates suggesting that cybercrimes average $6 trillion per year and up to 85% of business assets exist in digital form, the need for enhanced security is clear. When setting up new equipment or a new video conferencing platform, you can boost your security by merely establishing individual usernames for each participant and creating complex passphrases for logging into the video conference session.
4. Put a formal user policy in place.
By design, video conferences allow multiple people in various locations to communicate via a single, shared application. Advances in mobile technology make it possible to your meeting participants to send and receive high-quality video from a variety of computers, tablets, and smartphones. Allowing participants to connect to a video conference from their own devices can help you save on special equipment costs, but it also requires you to set clear expectations and boundaries. Take the time to develop a safe use policy that ensures the security of your information and the proper usage of your conferencing facilities.
5. Provide user training.
When it comes to safe, effective use of video conferencing technology, clarity is key. While scheduling time for potential participants to attend a combined training session can be a scheduling nightmare—especially for remote teams, recording a step-by-step training video is an effective way to present the material one time, but make it available for new users—and existing users who need a refresher—whenever they need it. The most effective training materials are concise, yet thorough, covering essential details without cluttering the presentation with unnecessary technical jargon.
6. Utilize a single-sign-on (SSO) with two-factor authentication (2FA).
By limiting user access options, network administrators can reduce the potential for confusion and isolate problems if they occur. By providing each individual with an SSO, a single set of login credentials for multiple applications, administrators can help mitigate potential delays caused by users attempting to log in to more than one application during a video conference session. Additionally, IT administrators can not only identify user-specific challenges more quickly, they can also track potentially harmful activities or practices back to specific user profiles. While SSO is undoubtedly convenient, it requires additional security considerations since a single login gives each user access to all approved applications. Using 2FA in conjunction with SSO, meeting organizers can provide a winning combination of convenience and security.
Clear Touch™ Chorus combines collaborative convenience with trustworthy security.
As video conferencing technology improves and competition among collaborative platforms increases, Clear Touch Interactive® proudly offers Chorus as a single software solution for business or education conferencing needs. Chorus offers an intuitive, universal interface that allows organizations to streamline the user experience across multiple devices.
Whether your company uses popular communication systems like Skype, Webex, GoToMeeting or another platform altogether, Chorus enhances session security by not only incorporating the individual program’s built-in security features, but also incorporating password protected wireless connections that keep sensitive information safe throughout your network.
Every Clear Touch™ interactive panel is device and software agnostic, which means you are always free to use whichever programs and operating systems that provide the best solution for your team’s conferencing needs. To see how Chorus can streamline your video meetings, schedule a live online demo today.