10 things to review with possible Corona Virus and SXSW

Wooden Sign that says Austin pointing to the right

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We are all hearing more and more about the corona virus.  The CDC is providing information to businesses nation wide.  With SXSW coming to Austin and large tech companies like Facebook and Twitter pulling out of the event, we need to make sure we prepared if this does become a more significant issue.  People from all over the world come to Austin for the the two week event.  I do not want to make this sound like a scare tactic, our job as an IT provider to our clients is to be proactive and make sure they are aware and have the knowledge they need to make decisions that protect their business.  We have put together ten things that you probably already have and have not reviewed in awhile.  The time is now to review those items to make sure you are prepared.  You do not want to be looking for these documents or be unsure of plans once something already happens. 

  1. Please review your business continuity plan and make any updates that are needed for example disaster recovery plan.
  2. Now is an excellent time to review the list of people who can work remotely.  If your office closed for 2+ weeks, does everyone that needs remote access has it.
  3. If your staff occasionally works remotely, have them test their remote connectivity sometime in the next few days.  
  4. We'd recommend discussing with your staff now to make sure that your plans are complete.  The scenario you should be planning for is a 2+ week closure of the office, which hopefully is a worst-case scenario.
  5. Make sure that your contact list of cell phone numbers and home phone numbers is up to date in case you're unable to reach people via email and need to communicate something urgently.  
  6. Make sure that any web conferencing tools that you use have a subscription large enough to handle your whole team if needed.
  7. Consider whether to stock up on soap, hand sanitizer, gloves, and masks (which are already in very short supply).  
  8. If your employees don't have laptops but may have to work from home, now is the time to consider getting them company-issued laptops.  Be careful not to compromise security by letting employees use personal computers that bypass all of your cybersecurity measures.  
  9. With supply lines with China disrupted, we may start to see shortages on technology items.  If you're planning any critical technology purchases in 2020, consider expediting them.  
  10. As with any world news, there are already corona virus phishing messages making the rounds.  Remind your staff to be extra careful about clicking on links or opening attachments in emails about corona virus (even if they appear to come from inside the company). 

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