Google recommends all employees in UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa work from home

Key Points
  • Google is asking employees based in the U.K., Europe, Middle East, and Africa to work from home beginning Thursday.
  • It comes after the company recommended all North America employees must work from home.
Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, speaks to the media before the opening of the Berlin representation of Google Germany in Berlin on January 22, 2019.
Carsten Koall | Getty Images News | Getty Images

Google recommended that employees from the U.K., Europe, Middle East and Africa work from home beginning Thursday until further notice, the company confirmed Wednesday.

The only remaining region conducting business as usual at this point is Latin America, which a Google spokesperson said could change as the situation evolves. 

The latest measures come amid Alphabet's attempts to mobilize its workforce of more than 300,000 workers to deal with the COVID-19 crisis. The World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a global pandemic. The outbreak has killed more than 4,291 people and infected at least 119,470 people around the world.

On Monday, CNBC reported that the company blocked all external visitors from coming into some of its offices, including New York and the San Francisco Bay Area where its Mountain View, California, headquarters are located. It also canceled all on-site job interviews. Tuesday, Google told its more than 100,000 North American employees to stay home amid the virus until at least April 10.

Alphabet's top executives, including CEO Sundar Pichai and CFO Ruth Porat, urged employees to stay motivated to run Google's global infrastructure amid sweeping changes and fears around the virus spread, CNBC reported last week. 

"We know this is a very unsettling time for everyone," Pichai said in an internal email, adding that the company has security and "resilience" teams running a 24-hour command center to help executives monitor the situation as it progresses.

World Health Organization chief declares the coronavirus a global pandemic
World Health Organization chief declares the coronavirus a global pandemic