Desktop RIA

Virtual Desktops – are they still providing ROI for RIAs?

Since the pandemic hit, Registered Investment Advisors and Broker-Dealers firms have leaned heavily on virtual desktop technology to keep their employees and advisors secure and productive. 

The idea of a virtual desktop on paper is great. In theory, it enables a worker to do their job, away from the office as it provides access to the data and tools one can access in the office.

What many workers across a wide range of industries have discovered, however, is that the remote application and desktop model is buckling under the demands of today’s new work environment. The theory of the virtual desktop doesn’t translate to a 100% enjoyable, productive work experience all of the time. Equally as important, this approach leads to new data security and compliance concerns.

At OS33, we have helped hundreds of financial services firms deploy virtual desktop technology over the past decade, and as a result, have come to understand the limitations and challenges with this delivery model. Since the pandemic hit, we have identified three areas in particular where advisors are experiencing risk exposure:

Meeting solutions
We’ve all used many different platforms over the last twelve months – Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Cisco Webex, and there are others. They’ve become indispensable to everyone. But let’s face it, these platforms have never worked well over virtual desktops, and that is not going to change.

What advisors do as a workaround is bypass their virtual desktops for online meetings, accessing the conferencing software locally on their devices. While doing this provides a much better experience, it without a doubt puts sensitive client data at risk.

Mobile Devices
RIAs have adjusted well to the concepts of both “work from home” and “work on any device” to ensure clients receive needed service. The pandemic didn’t slow the industry down in any way. Advisors were able to grab any PC or device, and keep things going. 

While the flexibility to use any device is fantastic for productivity, it’s a nightmare for security. Reliance on iOS and Android devices also leads to advisors working around virtual desktop solutions and accessing privileged client data through unsecured means.

Data Security 
Many RIAs – and in truth many business professionals – believe that client data is kept safe when accessed from a remote desktop or application. It just seems like it would be, right? Wrong – in most cases is untrue. Proper controls are needed to safeguard data and prevent data loss. But in the course of our busy day and with our need to take care of our clients, thoughts of security are pushed to the side.

The bad news?  We have found that many businesses and their teams are not properly securing their data. 

But there is some good news as well – there ARE actionable steps that a firm and its RIAs can take to protect sensitive data.  

Join OS33 at our upcoming webinar on April 8th that addresses this very topic: Three Virtual Desktop Challenges for RIAs – and How to Overcome Them.

Hear from OS33’s President, Morley Ivers, and VP of Strategy, Jeff Fisher. Our two experts have decades of experience developing and leveraging technologies to solve problems, and approach every day looking for better ways to protect sensitive information.

Ivers and Fisher will share: 

  • The areas where your advisors are most exposed in their remote work environment
  • The best – and safest – way to conduct virtual meetings
  • How to most effectively secure mobile devices, while maintaining productivity

Our goal is to make sure you know how to safeguard sensitive information while ensuring productivity remains high.

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Three Virtual Desktop Challenges for RIAs – and How to Overcome Them

Join OS33 for a 30-minute webinar
April 8, 2021


This webinar will feature an opportunity for Q&As. 

If you are unable to attend or are unsure of your schedule, be sure to sign up and we will send you a link to watch on-demand at your convenience.

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