February 15, 2019 Jim Brice

 

Can your business survive being hacked?

Cybercriminals and data thieves are experts at exploiting the vulnerabilities of notebooks and tablets. Data breaches and intrusions reported by businesses of all sizes are at an all time high. Could your company recover from identity theft, stolen competitive information, or compromised customer data? Find out how you should respond to being hacked, and then consider strengthening endpoint security with advanced solutions from MNJ Technologies.

Investigate and verify the attack
It’s important to have an incident response team in place that can immediately swing into action following a cyberattack. Quick response is the key to limiting damages. According to a Ponemon Institute study, leveraging an incident response team was the single biggest factor associated with reducing the cost of a data breach — saving companies nearly $400,000 on average. Here are the first, critical steps your team should take:

  • Identify the compromised systems
  • Investigate IP addresses used in the attack
  • Determine the type of attack, e.g., virus, malware, unauthorized access, etc.

Once you know the details of the threat or vulnerability, you can immediately warn other users on the network and inform them what type of attack to look for and how to avoid it.

Mitigate and isolate the damage
Don’t panic and shut down your entire network, disrupting your business operations and risking missed deadlines, angry customers, and damage to your company reputation. Instead, get busy isolating and mitigating damage to affected systems.

Don’t hesitate to notify customers and stakeholders of the attack. It’s better to admit to a data breach up front rather than keep the attack a secret. Should news get out that you’ve tried to hide or cover up a security breach, your company’s integrity could take a big hit.

Quarantine all infected computers or impacted applications on the network. By isolating affected systems, you can contain the damage and prevent any virus or malware from spreading. Your incident response team should also look for backdoors that hackers may have set up to get into your system in the future. If vendors, customers, or suppliers have been hacked, block all access from these accounts until security issues have been resolved.

Plug the holes, spread the word
Change company-wide passwords for access to any systems that were affected, and install clean data and software backups, preferably from off-site devices not connected to your network. Make sure there are no default “admin” or other obvious usernames and passwords in place that could allow hackers back in. Then, spread the word: Take steps to ensure all employees are trained in basic cybersecurity procedures and policies, such as keeping passwords secure, not sharing personal information, and avoiding emailed links and downloads.

Get the best protection for endpoint devices
By now, you’ve probably figured out that the best way to survive a data breach is not to have one. Endpoint devices have become the latest target, and attacks against notebooks and desktops increased by 132% in 2016 alone. That’s why it’s essential to strengthen endpoint security by replacing old, outdated, or insecure devices with notebooks and tablets equipped with multiple levels of protection to help secure your company’s valuable data assets.

Stay secure with MNJ Technologies
MNJ is a strategic technology solutions provider that specializes in helping transform businesses both large and small with best-in-class solutions and services that enable them to exceed expectations. We know every business is unique. That’s why we strive to understand your technology challenges and company goals, so the solutions we provide will drive business success for your organization. As an HP Gold partner, MNJ Technologies can give your company the advantages of superior security features- such as HP Sure StartGen4, HP Sure Run, and HP Sure Recover — available on HP Elite PCs and HP EliteBooks. Consult with the experienced professionals at MNJ today to discover how we can help you keep your company’s valuable data resources safe from hackers.

February 12, 2016 Jim Brice

There was a time when technicians had to don a white lab coat in order to even be allowed to enter the datacenter.  It was kept meat-locker cold so the multi-million dollar machines would not cook. Entire teams of people were required to keep the operation running including HVAC technicians, power technicians, tape operators, console operators, Service Engineers from the various equipment manufacturers, and more.  Fast forward 30 years and you don’t have to look far to find similar rooms still in use at most companies.  What has changed is that many of these rooms are only sparsely filled, and many companies have chosen to eliminate the data center space altogether.

As with most evolving technologies, refinement, specialization, and consolidation have completely changed the landscape.  Powerhouses like Apple, Google, Microsoft and Amazon have built acre-sized buildings packed with enough capacity to cover the computing needs of practically everyone on the planet.  This is really good for the consumer who can easily gain access to nearly unlimited capacity for their personal files, photos, and email.  It also means cheap capacity for any organization willing to figure out how to run their applications in this plethora of capacity known collectively as ’the cloud.’ Great, right?  Well, that depends on how you go about making use of this cloud.

Some providers like Amazon Web Services will let you commit to a very small footprint and price, and allow your needs to grow ‘elastically’ as needed, paying only for what you use.  This elasticity stings when it snaps back at you, if your applications utilize more resources that you expected they would.  Other providers let you contract specific capacities, but make it difficult to shrink if you ever need to. Still others require that you use their software stack exclusively.  It is enough to make your head foggy when contemplating the cloud.  Then, there are the small and mid-tier cloud providers who will sell you ‘blocks’ of virtual machine capacity measured in ram, disk, and GHz of processor capacity.  There’s a lot of overlap in this business, so don’t be surprised if your mid-tier provider is offering you VMware capacity that is actually running in an Amazon datacenter. Virtualization makes some very peculiar things possible. This is not a bad thing, for business or the planet. Those acre datacenter buildings are extremely modern, efficient and secure. Very little is allowed to go to waste in such an environment.

So how is one supposed to figure out how to navigate this cloud thing?  My advice is simple: start with a trusted partner who deals with these questions every day. MNJ Technologies sales and technical staff have decades of experience designing, deploying and servicing technology solutions whether they are provided directly by us, or through one of our many industry-leading partnerships.  Our goal is to match your needs to the best possible solution.