Pros and Cons of Intranets

Programming

Many organizations around the world have been molded by the year 2021, which has changed the way they do business. A huge digital shift occurred in the routine functions of business as a result of the epidemic and social alienation.

A digital era began around the world that was previously too tough or impracticable for day-to-day company operations. Working from home or remotely has become a part of our life.

Business operations had to be maintained in a virtual environment employing cutting-edge technologies and network infrastructure.
The threat to network security and productivity difficulties, on the other hand, has always posed a significant difficulty.

Intranets, a private network used by businesses, have long been in use, but their relevance has risen in recent years as a result of the enormous migration of people to remote work.

Everyone is familiar with the internet, which is a global network of computers that provides information and communication.
If you don’t work for a company that employs an intranet, you might not be aware of the phrase.
Even if you utilize an intranet on a daily basis, you may not have considered the system’s benefits and drawbacks.
In this article, we’ll go over some of the advantages and disadvantages of using an intranet in today’s work environment.

The Meaning of “Intranet”

An intranet is a private network that allows employees to share work-related information and communicate with one another within the company.
It only works within the confines of a closed network. It doesn’t allow anyone outside its network area access.
Intranets make use of corporate web servers that are exclusively accessible to employees of the company who need to communicate and conduct business.
Also an intranet can be connected to the internet or not. If it links to the internet, it should have very robust security mechanisms in place to prevent unauthorized access to the network.

Benefits Of New Generation Intranet

Advanced features are in new generation intranet technology. It now outperforms prior intranet technologies in terms of versatility and user-friendliness. It is capable of resolving a wide range of business problems and issues. Let’s take a look at the areas where a contemporary intranet can help.

PROS

Connect With Remote Workforce

Remote and distributed workforces are becoming increasingly popular around the world.
People are working online from their homes or from a faraway location. In today’s world, intranets are compatible with most company procedures, allowing them to run smoothly and easily on a regular basis.
It is critical to the smooth operation of a business in a virtual environment, as it ensures proper communication and efficiency.

Employee Engagement

An intranet can be as a closed social media platform. Employee engagement in a firm is aided by elements such as company updates, activity feeds, likes, and comments.
If people work from home, it allows them to better understand their corporate culture, raise their own voice, and combat some of the isolation.
In addition all of these features are available on a modern intranet, allowing employees and their employers to form a strong link.

Streamline Collaboration and Decision Making

Because the intranet provides constant private network connectivity, team members can collaborate on projects even if they are not in the same office.
In addition a fundamental benefit of an intranet system is the ability to make decisions that require input from multiple parties while also having access to the same information.
The intranet system allows different departments to organize themselves according to their needs, while also understanding that granting access to those who need it reduces “siloing” of information, where knowledge is kept inside a small group rather than disseminated.

Intranet: what is it, what is it for and how does this network technology  work? - Computing Mania

CONS

Cost and Investment

Setting up a modern intranet infrastructure necessitates significant expenditure.
It usually operates on a subscription basis, with a set monthly fee comparable to that of a magazine subscription.
On the other hand some intranets have alternative or more intricate charge structures, such as a per-user cost that varies depending on the size of the company and the number of users.

Complexity in Configuration and Setup

Intranets have a reputation for being difficult to configure and set up It’s common knowledge that IT staff spend a significant amount of time configuring, implementing, and managing intranet infrastructure in businesses.
This technical burden may appear to be a waste of time and labor.

Confined to Internal Use Only

The intranet is only accessible within the company. As a result, employees are unable to quickly share content with third parties or on social media platforms. This can be a technical stumbling block to working with external partners.
The capacity to distribute data from the Intranet outside of the organization is usually handled by a small group of people, such as the marketing team, who are given authority to do so.
The same crew frequently edits and maintains corporate websites and social media channels.
Although many companies want their employees to keep their personal social media posts separate from their work-related ones. Others wish to use social sharing to tap into their employees’ networks.

Also employee advocacy is a wonderful approach to raise brand awareness and generate leads. Various technologies are being used by many companies to use staff as brand ambassadors. Because the intranet is primarily used internally, employers who want to take advantage of this type of brand advocacy will be unable to do so.
Adding extra steps to the sharing process is a major disadvantage if you work in a sector that benefits from employee social media amplifying your message.

Security Threats Over Intranet and The Solutions

We can’t escape the fact that intranet security concerns are always present, posing a threat to any organization’s day-to-day operations. It can even bring a company’s operations to a halt owing to trivial errors. Aside from that, remote work culture is becoming increasingly popular. As a result, intranet security has become a legitimate concern for businesses today. Intranets, like any other website, run on web servers and require the same security controls as any other website, despite the fact that they are only accessible to internal users. Also you need to remember that threats might emerge from within, either accidentally or maliciously. Furthermore, once a hacker has gained access to your network, an unsecured Intranet is a simple target.

Importance Of Implementing Intranet Security

A virtual workforce or remote work is fully reliant on web-based tools and software. Staff can simply access the programs and data because they are kept in a cloud-based environment. Some users may work from home and rely on cloud systems to complete their tasks. Others who work remotely use a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) to access their PCs, systems, and apps from a traditional data center over a VPN connection. In any case, safety is paramount. Although this new work culture addresses many issues, it also draws cybercriminals and hackers seeking unauthorized access to the company’s network. That is why now is the time to adopt effective intranet security.
Perhaps now, more than ever, it is critical.

Hence cyber dangers can be internal or external, and they pose a risk to both enterprises and national security. They can range in severity from a complete system shutdown to a little annoyance that just takes an hour to fix.

Correcting Internal Vulnerabilities

Easy-to-crack passwords: A strong password is a must for protecting employee data.
Secure login also necessitates two-factor authentication (2FA) or, better yet, multifactor authentication (MFA).
2FA is less expensive and easier for end users. However, it isn’t as safe, which should be the deciding factor in the end.

Data Breach Issues: Organizations should encrypt intranet data, according to network administrators. When to encrypt data stored on servers is a decision that the company should make after thorough study. Also consider data classification, access time (speed), and whether encryption is required to meet compliance. For enterprises that are regulated, such as banks and medical facilities, encryption is very vital.

Unrestricted access to business devices: Mishandling of workplace gadgets can lead to intranet security breaches.
Employees should not connect any personal electronic devices to their computers or laptops, such as pen drives, cellphones, and so on. This is one of the most common causes of data leaking.
To avoid this, any organization’s IT specialists should configure devices used for work purposes solely in a restricted manner to secure intranet infrastructure.
Also access to USB drives and other removable storage devices can be restricted using a GPO or an enterprise antivirus platform. Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) can be set up to provide for a partitioned area where company applications like corporate email or Blackberry apps can be used separately.

Preventing External Threats To Intranet

Phishing Attack: Remote employees use a variety of digital applications for work, such as email, instant messaging, and so on. To break the company’s network, hackers deliver any malicious link or file via email or chat.
They have access to the network once they click. Employees must therefore use caution when clicking or downloading any dubious web link or file. In addition to this to reinforce the intranet infrastructure, IT professionals should also install anti-phishing software on the network.

Malware and Viruses: Malware, spyware, Viruses, Trojans, and other malicious software can infect the intranet and cause it to malfunction.
Hence IT personnel should examine event logs on a regular basis to spot anomalous intranet activity and swiftly resolve the problem.

Physical Device Security: In addition to virtual intranet threats, employees should be wary of physical theft of their office electronics.
Employees should never leave their mobile work devices alone or in an unprotected location.
As a result of these operations, the devices are exposed to large-scale data theft.
So it is critical to encrypt mobile phones, laptops, and tablets to make it as difficult as possible for a thief to access your information.

Denial of Service (DoS) Attack: This form of attack can flood the intranet with data requests, effectively shutting it down. To avoid this damage, IT experts should check for any potential concerns on a regular basis and install tools or software to manage traffic volume to the intranet. DDOS prevention is frequently included as an extra layer of defense in a web application firewall (WAF).
DDOS/WAF protection via the cloud can be as simple as checking a box (as it is in Azure, depending on your subscription.)


Summary

Hence organizational productivity, communication, and data management can all benefit from a successful intranet system.
Employees have the capacity to easily connect and share information, allowing for more effective project collaboration and higher productivity.
Each employee can simply access all they need to do their job with the available desktop resources and tools.
All of these advantages come as a result of devoting time and resources to creating an efficient intranet.


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X-Soft

X-Soft is an established player in the IT market committed to providing excellent solutions for Web/ Mobile (iOS, Android, Web) around the globe. Namely, we are a team of professional web and mobile developers with 10+ years of experience.

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