WatchGuard Support Center

Knowledge Base - Article

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 WatchGuard Response to COVID-19

Information
Questions and answers about WatchGuard's response to COVID-19

As the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread worldwide, WatchGuard is dedicated to providing a seamless sales and support experience for our partners and customers.

We’ve prepared this FAQ to explain our approach to both safety and business continuity. News and guidelines around COVID-19 are constantly evolving. We’re continuing to monitor international, national, and local guidelines on this topic, and we’ll update this FAQ if necessary as we learn more. If you have questions that aren’t answered in the FAQ, please contact us at:

Covid-19Questions@watchguard.com


Employee Safety and Travel

Are WatchGuard’s physical office locations worldwide still open during at this time?
  • WatchGuard has pre-existing processes and procedures in place to maintain business continuity during times in which working in our physical office locations is not possible.
  • WatchGuard is closely monitoring the spread of COVID-19 worldwide and following the safety guidelines implemented by international, national, and local government health agencies. As such, employees who are based in our offices in Seattle (US and WatchGuard headquarters), China, Singapore, and Italy are currently working remotely, with limited staff still onsite as required. As conditions change, employees in additional office locations may also be asked to work remotely.
How do I contact employees who typically work from impacted offices?
WatchGuard was well prepared for an incident that might require employees to work remotely. Please continue using all the standard forms of communications with WatchGuard employees and offices — all calls that come into the normal WatchGuard phone lines will still be answered, emails will receive responses, and shipments will continue to be received and sent.

Are WatchGuard employees allowed to travel at this time
In general, the WatchGuard travel policy will mirror the travel recommendations published by the CDC, who defines travel warnings based on risk levels. We recommend you review these guidelines regularly: CDC Travel.

What are WatchGuard’s travel guidelines?
As a result of the CDC travel guidelines, WatchGuard’s current travel policy is as follows:
  • No business travel will be permitted in/out of Level 2 or Level 3 risk countries. Today that list includes Italy, Iran, China, Japan and South Korea. Per CDC guidelines, upon returning from a Level 2 or 3 risk country employees will be required to observe a 14-day social distancing period.
  • Social distancing means remaining out of:
    • Public places where close contact with others may occur, such as shopping centers, movie theaters, and stadiums.
    • Workplaces—unless the person works in an office space that allows distancing from others.
    • Schools and other classroom settings.
    • Local public transportation, such as on a bus, subway, taxi, ride share, plane, or ship.
  • Travel in/out of Level 1 or other impacted countries is discouraged and should be limited to business-essential trips, and require authorization from WatchGuard’s management team. If you, as our valued partner, feel that a business trip is essential, and the same results are not possible via virtual collaboration technology, please let us know, and we will determine next steps on a case-by-case basis.
  • Please note that if you have a scheduled meeting with someone from WatchGuard that is visiting from an impacted area, and you are not comfortable hosting them, please let us know and we’ll modify plans as needed.
  • For all other travel, we strongly recommend employees consult and follow local guidelines, and practice good hygiene habits…as always.
How long will the WatchGuard’s office closure and travel guidelines be in place?
At this point we are monitoring news sources closely and will continue to provide updates as changes occur that would change any of our operations and guidelines.

Business Continuity

What is WatchGuard doing to ensure business continuity as the COVID-19 situation continues to develop? 
The management team at WatchGuard is tracking the development COVID-19 daily, as well as acting upon the potential short- and long-term impact of this to our customers, partner community and employees. The health and well-being of our community is our top priority, as well as continuing to deliver upon our commitments to partners and customers. As such, steps have already been taken to maintain business continuity throughout all functions of the organization, and given the fluid nature of this situation, our management team is in daily communications about how to best manage to maintain normal operations.

Will this impact WatchGuard’s supply chain?
  • We are in daily contact with our manufacturers, freight forwarders and other points in the supply chain to assess, manage, and mitigate issues for the short-, mid- and long-term periods.
  • As we close out Q1, we have the required inventory available to meet sales forecasts across all product lines.
  • Going into Q2, our supply inventory will also meet forecasted needs, and we are working with our vendors to ensure the long-term availability of all necessary components for seamless manufacturing of our products.
Will WatchGuard’s Cloud services be impacted?
No, Cloud services (WatchGuard Cloud, AuthPoint, TDR, Wi-Fi Cloud and DNSWatch/DNSWatchGO) are operated out of AWS and are not impacted by COVID-19. WatchGuard’s service operations and engineering teams remain at 100% capacity and are not encumbered by the COVID-19 remote work policy we have established.

Is Customer Support interrupted by this?
There has been no interruption of Customer Support, and the team continues to be fully operational. The team has a work-from-home/business continuity response plan for instances such as this. With the exception of an occasional dog bark or a child’s squeak-toy in the background, customers and partners calling Support will not notice any difference in service and support.

Is the Warehouse still operating and shipping products? 
Yes, the WatchGuard warehouse is fully functioning, including receiving and shipping sales orders and RMAs worldwide, as well as testing and refurbishing units at full capacity. We are working closely with the warehouse team to ensure their safety and needs are met to have seamless coverage.

Is WatchGuard’s Sales Order team still working?
The WatchGuard order administration team is fully operational with all personnel working remotely and providing 100% coverage for all accounts and order processing. Please contact them as you normally would during their standard hours of business operations.

Does the COVID-19 affect WatchGuard’s intent to acquire Panda Security? 
On 9 March 2020, WatchGuard announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Panda Security. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, and is expected to close in Q2 2020. The developments of COVID-19 do not change our intent to acquire Panda Security, and we look forward to completing the transaction as soon as the required closing conditions are met.