Operational and cyber resilience should sync in tandem in a remote work world, reveals Microsoft

Cyber resilience

The whole world is working remotely due to the deadly outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. With the virus spreading like a speed of light, it’s imperative for the enterprise companies to adopt a secured work environment in a bid to achieve Operational and cyber resilience. Even though the systems upgrade can be done in a timely manner, the companies should bring in strong work ethics to keep not only their main systems but also the PCs of the employees from the chronic eyes of the COVID-19.

Commenting on the development, Ann Johnson, Corporate Vice President, Cybersecurity Solutions Group at Microsoft disclosed that some organizations are not yet completely ready for the new world of remote work both financially or organizationally. She stressed the fact that Operational and cyber resilience should work in tandem with each other for an optimal remote work environment.

According to Johnson, the organizations should activate multi-factor authentication (MFA) for 100 percent of their workforce. Furthermore, the usage of the Secure Score should be encouraged to enhance the security posture of the organization. The companies should immediately implement a mature patching program, which includes containment and isolation of devices that cannot be patched effectively. They should identify older systems and replace them with new devices and operating systems like Windows 10, adds Johnson.

Regular risk evaluation

To maintain Operational resilience, enterprise companies and organizations should regularly evaluate their overall risk threshold. The relevant security team should execute the processes via a combination of human efforts including the adoption of technology products and services.

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For instance, if systems are prone to viruses, malware, or ransomware attacks, then the required antivirus tools should be installed on all working systems. This will certainly avoid sudden work disruptions. The corporate community is struggling to cope up with the active ransomware attacks and you make sure to install the tools to prevent such attacks in the future. If the organizations are not following cyber resilience despite organizational resilience, then the systems are vulnerable to attacks even though the company is under a secure remote work environment.

While organizations are quickly adapting to the remote work culture, it’s necessary for them to show efficiency with regard to both Operational and cyber resilience. This is because technological systems are prone to disruptions. It could be either natural or manmade disruptions. Moreover, companies should adopt a PRS strategy, which means Planning, Response, and Recovery.

The employees should be provided with regular training to build an Operational resilience mindset. The usage of Microsoft Teams should be leveraged completely for the purpose of the training. According to Microsoft, only 42 percent of the global executives were indeed confident of a quick recovery from the cyberattacks before COVID-19.

Digital transformation

Recently, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that they have been observing two years’ worth of digital transformation in just two months. The main reason for this so-called “new normal” is due to the adoption of document sharing and video conferencing technologies by people and organizations worldwide. The schools across the world have been aggressively making use of cloud-based document sharing systems for assignments after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic on a large scale. Moreover, examinations are being conducted over the Internet, and answers are being uploaded to cloud storage platforms.

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The eruption of COVID-19 is seen as the correct time to rectify our faults. Hence, organizations should make use of the COVID-19 opportunity to provide their people with the appropriate resources to enable them to access data irrespective of the location. From our point of view, the usage of Microsoft 365 will go a long way to secure valuable data.


You will not be able to achieve operational resilience without proper cyber resilience in place. The disruptions caused due to natural disasters and cyber-attacks will prove costly for the proper functioning of the companies. You should first check out the initiatives that you have done till today if your company gets disrupted on a large scale. The system administrator should be held accountable for any eventuality. The companies should engage with their employees on a daily basis to know their requirements and needs in their quest to achieve both operational and cyber resilience in a remote work environment.

Anand Narayanaswamy is the editor-in-chief of Netans. He was recognized as a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for 9 years (2002 to 2011) and again as a Microsoft MVP in Surface under Windows and Devices in January 2024. He worked as a Chief Technical Editor with ASPAlliance and was part of ASPInsider program. Anand has published several articles and reviews related to various software and hardware products for various software and technology related websites. He is also active on social media and also participates as an Influencer for various brands. Anand can be reached at admin@netans.com

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