As the layoff wave continues, a large pool of stressed, angry, and possibly vindictive ex-employees is accumulating, putting security practices to the test. Computerworld reports on this trend in the article, "Layoff backlash: Five steps to protect your business from angry ex-employees," suggesting these basic steps to help ward off possible damage caused by laid-off employees — up and down the corporate ladder:
Chad Perrin has already been covering this security issue for TechRepublic; in his Feb. 5 post, "10 important categories of employment transition security," he pinpointed the areas that your security policy should cover to ensure a smooth and safe transition period when employees are leaving (willingly or unwillingly) the company. And recognizing that security concerns can go both ways, Chad followed up with the popular post, "10 tips for personal security when you leave an employer."
- Clearly and completely document each worker's access to the network, applications, servers and the physical building.
- Shut down remote connections, including pcAnywhere systems and VPNs.
- Invalidate usernames and passwords.
- If the employee worked in IT, change root access and network access.
- Shut down external access to the telephone system.
- Make sure handhelds, smartphones and cell phones are turned in along with PCs and laptops.
- Collect ID cards.
- Use monitoring software to keep an eye on network traffic.
If you find yourself playing catch-up with your security policies, here are some other TechRepublic resources that will help you customize your own procedures:
Selena has been at TechRepublic since 2002. She is currently a Senior Editor with a background in technical writing, editing, and research. She edits Data Center, Linux and Open Source, Apple in the Enterprise, The Enterprise Cloud, Web Designer, and IT Security blogs.