And the latest is ...
The world is certainly a different place than it was just weeks ago. From what was a normal days work to stay-at-home advisories, self-isolation and lock-downs, business and workers face enormous challenges.
In such adverse times it's not possible to predict what the landscape will look like in the months ahead, but with the unfortunate loss of jobs and closure of businesses all we can know is that it will be a dramatically different place.
Those that can and do keep operating are an imperative for the economy, both now and through recovery, and whilst it would be reprehensible of vendors to audit companies when the corner is turned, there are those that inevitably will still do so.
So while there is much to contemplate and deal with in just keeping your business running, a quick check on some basic principles could avert some later issues. Consider some of the most common licensing pitfalls with typical BCP scenario's:
Working From Home
Working from Home means mobility - if you are allocating laptops and notebooks be wary of installation or device based licenses, all of which might be overlooked with the rapid deployment of SOE's and new devices. There may even be restrictions on what category of device the software can be installed on, or even where physically it can be used (eg. designated offices or specific geographic locations). Where applicable, check you mobility rights cater for your intended use, and are current (eg. Microsoft SA Benefits).
Remote access can be another minefield where in the rush to get staff connected controls that would normally be in place might get overlooked. While solutions like an F5 BIG-IP Edge Gateway provide user based licensing to their own resources via secure VPN, other storefront and virtualisation products such as Citrix Gateway with VDI if not properly administered can be at greater risk of exposing applications unintentionally - make sure your access controls eg. AD Groups etc) are aligned to your licensing, and any additions to those secure groups have corresponding entitlements.
If you are in the position of having to invoke your DR (or partial DR) things will undoubtedly be more complicated. License transfer rights, powering servers up, or moving capacity from cold to hot can easily lead to over use. Migrating (or worse, extending) production workload to DR will certainly have conditions and constraints that if over-looked will leave you visibly non-compliant at a later date via audit trails such as SCRT or license server logs. Keep appropriate records that will help to mitigate any action you needed to take, and make sure you enable/track license migration alongside any workload you move.
While we'd like to think some leniency would be afforded through these difficult times, keeping a good handle on your compliance position just makes good business sense.
So stay compliant, but mostly, stay well, and stay safe.