The pandemic ushered in sudden and massive changes to the way that businesses operate. Those changes are still being felt nearly three years later. Mandated lockdowns, social distancing, and other factors, which impacted the ability of large groups to convene in public and private spaces, contributed to a rapid growth in remote work as businesses were forced to temporarily shutter offices. Work-from-home policies—and the culture of remote work that was spawned—arose out of efforts to continue business operations and combat the loss of revenue caused by forced closures. However, many businesses were not outfitted with the necessary infrastructure to quickly support these significant changes, making them vulnerable to serious security risks.
Organizations took several approaches to keep their employees productive during mandated lockdowns. Some businesses had their employees take their corporate desktops home with them, some relied on VPNs (virtual private networks) for a secure connection from home, and others abandoned security protocols altogether by allowing employees to work directly from their personal computer applications rather than from the company’s authorized apps. While these approaches provided a quick fix for businesses unprepared for the pandemic, they also made these businesses susceptible to various security threats, like hacking and data loss.
Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) began rising in prominence during this time as a much-needed solution to the many security risks associated with remote work. Interest in VDI had been steadily increasing since before 2020, but the rapid increase in remote work driven by the pandemic led to an even bigger boom in adoption by companies looking for a secure solution to get their employees productive from home.
VDI is a type of managed service made up of hardware, software, and systems that deliver a virtualized desktop environment to end users. Virtual machines create virtual desktop environments, which are stored on a central server and delivered over a secure network connection.
VDI typically deploys a Windows cloud desktop environment, though there are some solutions that offer access to other operating systems.
The user accesses a virtual desktop on the server through a client app. The client app transmits the keystrokes and mouse movements a user makes to the virtual desktop. This transmission is accomplished by using an encrypted protocol that contains only the display elements, keystrokes, and mouse movements. Because the protocol only contains these minimal bits of information, sensitive data never leaves the data center. Being in control of where and how data is transmitted is essential for data security and can help streamline backup and disaster recovery efforts.
TVDI protocols are strongly encrypted, eliminating the need for a VPN or other security measures on the desktop client. Security and management of the VDI, the virtual desktop environments, and the data are all managed centrally by the managed service provider. With a reliable third party being responsible for securing the VDI and virtual desktops, businesses can focus on securing their own data and users.
The centralized and virtualized nature of VDI comes with numerous security benefits. Because the infrastructure is managed from a central location, administrators can promptly address security threats by deploying immediate patches to all virtual desktops on the network. In addition, because the environment is virtualized, a single session can be simply discarded and a new one created if an independent user were to compromise their session in any way. These advantages prevent individual breaches of security from impacting the entire workforce and infrastructure in costly ways.
Companies looking to transition to a more secure solution for their remote workforce should consider partnering with a managed service provider to equip their team with virtual desktop infrastructure. We built vDesk.works to provide Windows 365 cloud PC environments with enterprise-grade security to organizations all over the world. With vDesk.works, employees can connect to a secure Windows 10 virtual desktop online from any internet-enabled device. They can access their full work desktop and data through our reliable desktop client app that is as secure as the protections employed on their work computer.
With vast scalability to meet your evolving workforce needs and a pay-per-user model, vDesk.works offers a truly cost-effective solution to fortify your business operations and data security. We believe that cloud computing solutions should be flexible, dynamic, and simple to use. Visit our website to learn more or schedule a live demo to see how our virtual desktop infrastructure can make a difference for your business today!