Using the right technology is of utmost importance when shifting from physical to virtual board meetings. One of the most important factors to consider to make sure you are choosing the right technology is security.
Board meetings usually consist of sharing confidential information to make strategic decisions. As such, the board portal you choose for your organization should be backed by stringent security. Confidentiality is one of the most critical issues boards have to consider. Your board management solution should remain highly secured from cyberthreats while remaining compliant to laws and regulations.
According to Taz Malik, Regional Sales Director of Convene for North America & the Caribbean, “when we have introductory calls with directors looking into digitizing, they have a lot of questions about security first and foremost. That’s one of the most important things.”
Find out what security measures your board should assess when choosing the right technology as you go digital in your boardroom.
Understand Cybersecurity Threats
Nowadays, boards are still adopting new ways of sustaining their regular operations. This includes virtual meetings. As boards choose to hold boardroom matters virtually, the risk for more organized cyberattacks also grows.
It is important to remain alert for cyberthreats and be on your guard to mitigate any risks, especially during the pandemic. When you are aware of what cyberattacks could hit your board in virtual meetings, choosing the right solution becomes effortless.
Upon comparing board portals, consider which solution has the robust security features that can decrease the risk of cyberattacks. Data encryption, multi-factor authentication, role-based access control, and flexible hosting options are absolute must-haves. Ultimately, look for security-rich software solutions that can effectively respond to today’s critical cybersecurity challenges.
Weigh Your Hosting Options
For most virtual collaboration tools, two hosting options are available – on-cloud or on-premise. In a nutshell, hosting on-cloud uses data stored externally on vendor-hosted servers. On the other hand, on-premise hosting involves storing data within your company’s own servers.
There is no one-size-fits-all choice for organizations. As such, you need to choose a tool that can provide enough flexibility. It should also promote complete control over company data and information shared in meetings.
“We do have clients in different fields like the financial sector. I work a lot in the Caribbean and some of my clients are central banks in different countries. All of their IT systems are housed in their buildings. They don’t use cloud service providers in their deployments,” emphasized Malik.
Raymond Lam, CEO of CrewCorp Services brings up the prejudice of many directors, “having my data on cloud, I don’t always have control over it. If it’s in my house or office, I can lock it.” However, this line of thinking can cause limitations. “As you notice, technology is not like that anymore. There will be situations where it could be more secure on the cloud,” he added.
When assessing how to host your data, consider regulatory requirements, organization bylaws, existing IT infrastructure, and even top management concerns. The bottomline is that you need to assess your organization’s needs and requirements before choosing the appropriate hosting solution for your virtual board meeting platform.
Check for Access Protocols
When your board begins to adopt a digital method of working, one of the critical features to check is the availability of system access protocols. A high degree of granularity should be present in the system you choose for your virtual board meetings.
Since topics discussed in board meetings tend to be volatile and extremely critical, managing confidential information and discussions is important for board members. This includes the ability to say things off-record, pause recording of board meetings, and pull out sensitive digital documents as needed. Directors can be more confident to participate in virtual board meetings when proper documentation and access to information can be strictly supervised by corporate secretaries.
The ability to define user roles and permissions is critical in selecting the right board portal. It needs to ensure that the right people have access to the right information. Thus, corporate secretaries and system administrators must have control over who can access certain documents and even agenda items.
Waweru Mathenge, Chairman of the Institute of Corporate Secretaries in Kenya, saw the need to consider all factors to enhance boardroom cybersecurity. “So the board really needs to manage at various mitigations in terms of the security software that needs to be put in place. You need to consider protocols for access to the system, and how to mitigate risk of loss just in case there is system penetration. All that has to be considered so that those risks are minimized,” emphasized Mathenge.
With the pervasiveness of cyberattacks, security ought to be a major consideration of boards choosing a solution. Directors need to equip necessary skills and tools that can help them be champions of cybersecurity.
You should choose the right board management software that is trusted by the most security-conscious organizations in over 100 countries. Convene can ensure that your board will have full virtual meeting security from any threats or vulnerabilities.