IT Pro Day falls on September 15 each year. As the website dedicated to this event details, it is a day to recognize and celebrate “the increasingly enormous range of technologies and rapid pace of change IT pros must manage.”
Boxley begins by looking at IT in the context of the 2020 pandemic, most notably the exponential rise in remote working: “This year, the immeasurable impact and value IT pros provide every day, across virtually every industry, took center stage as much of the world’s population was forced to head home to work, learn, and live. The ability to connect and communicate virtually, as well as access and share data became not only business-critical, but also crucial for education and day-to-day living.”
Boxley also notes the risks around remote working, especially those of the cybersecurity kind: “Unfortunately, during this pandemic era it also became abundantly clear that while working and learning from home offers health and safety benefits, when it comes to data safety, it’s a much different story. While some IT pros pursued (or got stuck with) conventional approaches like virtual private networks (VPNs), others chose more up-to-date technology like software-defined perimeter (SDP) solutions. These savvy folks knew that SDP is able to make VPN issues – such as inadvertently opening the whole network to hackers who can now move laterally across the entirety of connected systems to steal and corrupt data – disappear.”
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With all of this in mind, Boxley reiterates why IT Pro Day matters: “My advice? Come September 15, as well as all year round, take time out of your busy day to thank your local IT pro. It is likely whether you know it or not, that among the plethora of initiatives they executed to ensure your working and/or learning success, they also made sure that when they opened the door for you to access internal networks, they also slammed the door on cybercriminals.”
The annual IT Pro Day is celebrated on each third Tuesday of September. The event was created in 2015 to thank all those who keep the wheels of IT turning while making it all look easy. The theme for IT Pro Day 2020 is “You Were Built for This”, focusing on the additional efforts that IT staff put into supporting workplaces and scores of office workers resituated to work from home, during the coronavirus pandemic.
Going forwards, the role of IT could shift further as many companies, of a range of different types, make the decision to go “permanent WFH,” or “remote-first”.