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Remote Worker Security

  • 1.  Remote Worker Security

    Posted 19 days ago
    Just a basic survey type question. We are looking to possibly have some of our workers use their Genesys apps at home, possibly even contact center agents. Does anyone work for a company or support a company that has a significant amount of contact center agents working from home using Interaction Desktop? We have voice quality and security concerns which need to be addressed prior to moving forward and were looking for ideas on what people require of their agents as far as equipment, endpoint protection, etc. as well as any policies in place to make sure voice quality and security is met. Even things like "We require that an end user has this type of Internet/bandwidth, this type of communication device, we restrict x,y and z from being used on the pc, etc. to be a remote agent". Our only test has been to have an agent go home with a laptop, VPN in and then remote desktop to their pc at work. Does anyone have this as their solution? Any advice against using it this way? For now, Interaction Connect and Genesys Cloud are not being considered for solution. Any and all advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
    #Security

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    Alex
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  • 2.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    GCAP Member
    Posted 18 days ago
    Hi Alex, I've got several hundred agents that have been working from home using Interaction Desktop and a VPN for several months now. We don't have a minimum requirement for bandwidth. In fact, I have one agent working from a hot spot device, because she doesn't have internet service. They all use SIP softphone, so just a USB headset is needed - no other communication devices. We do occasionally see RONAs, but I can't attribute that to the network conditions since we know that working from home comes with additional distractions that might also result in a RONA. The key difference in our setup and what you're considering is the remote desktop. I'm not certain that works. (The client will not run in a Citrix environment, for sure.) Our agents all have company laptops and docking stations at home, we only VPN into the corporate network.

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    Kristin Rappe
    Roche Diabetes Care, Inc.
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  • 3.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    Posted 18 days ago
    Thanks for the info Kristin. Has the softphone worked reliably? We tested remote number and although it worked with this user as they had strong cell signal, we know we are inviting possibly more trouble if we opened this up to everyone as we could run into not only poor bandwidth but also an unreliable communication device.

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    Alex
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  • 4.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    GCAP Member
    Posted 18 days ago
    Yes, the softphone works very reliably for us. Our regulations prevent us from using remote number, so softphone is all we've ever used and it has never posed a problem for us.

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    Kristin Rappe

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  • 5.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    GENESYS
    Posted 18 days ago
    Ok,

    So some thoughts....

    As already mentioned, the client is not designed to work with Citrix type solutions. There is another potential issue, even if accessing a remote desktop PC (note: I haven't done any testing or measuring, but...) When you are running an RDP session, there is a need to send all changes in the UI over the connection - if this is busy it almost amounts to a video stream. In addition, all keyboard and mouse activity needs to be relayed. So, you move the mouse, that has to be sent to the remote machine, the mouse pointer moved on the remote desktop and the resulting updates to the image relayed back. If you run the client directly, them it's just the connection from the client to the IC server (over a VPN, of course) which I would very much hope would be less bandwidth intensive! This leaves more for the audio connection.

    I have worked with solutions in the past that used remote control of a desktop PC for "dial-in" support and in every instance it was a disaster. What if the PC crashes? What if there is a power blip and it powers down? What if the user accidentally shuts it down? All of these can, and do, happen. Assuming that the office is closed and there is nobody there, who is going to restart the machines? Servers are less of an issue because they usually have more reliable power and more robust remote management capabilities.

    Finally, if you have users who want / "need" a physical phone (Polycom or whatever) don't forget about the SIP Bridge that can be used to run these over a VPN.

    If I can think of anything else, I'll post again. Good luck, but remember that Genesys has many customers who are very successfully doing this at the moment.

    HTH

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    Paul Simpson
    Senior Technical Instructor
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  • 6.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    Posted 18 days ago
    Excellent info and much appreciated. Thanks Paul. I'll have to take a closer look at SIP bridge. We paid for the phones, might as well get some use out of them.

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    Alex
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  • 7.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    Posted 16 days ago
    Edited by Richard Presling 16 days ago
    Hi Alex,

    I have a lot of customers using VPN access and running SIP softphone and Interaction desktop on their PC's at home. Usually they use a company provided laptop, but some not-for-profit organisations are allowing agents to use their own devices as long as their antivirus is reliable and up to date.

    When SIP softphone is used on a VPN it requires the user to manually choose the right network connection (usually includes VPN in the name) in Options before provisioning the softphone, otherwise the connection tries the home network. It sounds simple, but is easily missed.

    If allowing agents to use their cellphones or home phones as Remote numbers, make sure they disable the voicemail, otherwise callers might find themselves in the agent's personal email.

    Another issue which has recently been fixed by Genesys is that if the PC goes to sleep then wakes up, the SIP Softphone connection doesn't always wake up, so you can get an incoming call that the agent can't pickup until they reprovision the softphone. A way to minimise the risk is to set softphone connections to persistent so they don't shut down between calls. This also speeds up the time taken to connect a call to a remote agent.

    Like all things it takes a bit of getting used to but remote VPN workers using SIP softphone and Interaction Desktop is a very successful solution for all my Covid remote workers.

    Regards,

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    Richard Presling
    Pyrios (Pty) Limited
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  • 8.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    Posted 15 days ago
    Also, if you are adding a lot of VPN users make sure you have enough VPN bandwidth and firewall processor capacity.

    Thanks,

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    Richard Presling
    Pyrios (Pty) Limited
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  • 9.  RE: Remote Worker Security

    Posted 14 days ago
    More excellent info and thanks for the head up on the softphone provisioning. Thanks Richard!

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    Alex
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