Tech companies launch Covid-19 UK business support

Some of the UK’s leading technology providers are unveiling specialist support packages to help companies survive the Coronavirus outbreak.

With millions of workers now in self-isolation and businesses facing insolvency due to the chaos inflicted by COVID-19, IT specialists have announced measures to help organisations operate despite the economic turbulence.

Zoho, the business software applications provider, has just announced it is launched its own Small Business Emergency Subscription Assistance Program (ESAP).

The package will offer 20,000 qualified paying customers with 25 employees or less, zero costs for every single application currently in use for up to three months.

Sridhar Iyengar, MD of Zoho Europe, said: “With COVID-19 disrupting people’s lives, it’s absolutely critical that small businesses are given full support to continue operating despite the chaos.

It’s critical that companies continue to operate despite the chaos caused by COVID-19 crisis

“With huge pressure on revenues, cashflows, and millions of workers worried about the future of their jobs, being able to log-on and remain productive is essential.”

Jonathan Young, CIO, FDM Group said, “It’s critical that companies continue to operate despite the chaos caused by COVID-19 crisis, particularly when millions of workers have families to feed as well as rent and mortgages to pay.

Key to this effort is developing a clear plan of action, so that businesses can manage large workloads remotely, drafting in staff with proficient digital skills to help deploy these new working strategies. This should include using online tools to brief staff, interview candidates and keep the business running as usual despite the turmoil.”

Industry experts always warned of the cyber risks associated with mandatory remote working policies. Absolute Software has launched a new service to support companies that are on the move.

workers are being hit with imitation emails impersonating the government and the WHO, asking for personal details

Christy Wyatt, CEO of Absolute Software, said: “We are immediately making Application Persistence available for VPN apps at no charge through August. This means is that if they are relying on VPN to keep their employees connected, we will monitor the VPN application to make sure it remains undeleted and in force.”

Meanwhile Chris Ross, SVP, Barracuda Networks said: “We’re seeing a rise in the number of phishing email attacks launched on businesses, as cyber criminals attempt to exploit employee confusion during this extensive period remote working.

“Our analysis shows that workers are being hit with imitation emails impersonating the UK government and the UN World Health Organisation, asking for personal details. It’s critical that companies remain vigilant during this time and have the correct email protection systems in place to protect staff.”

An Tim Sadler, CEO at Tessian, insisted: “It’s critical that businesses adjust to the ‘new normal’ and recognise that employees are now operating in unfamiliar working environments, with many using personal devices while working from home.

“Bosses should ensure staff avoid downloading new software, sharing company data and be vigilant to identify and report suspected scam emails. We know that cyber criminals thrive in exploiting vulnerable situations, so protecting the personal security of individuals and companies should be a top priority during this crisis.”