two-factor authentication orlando

How Two-Factor Authentication Can Protect Companies in Orlando

You’re driving around Orlando and realize you need some cash. You pull up to an ATM. Before you can access the money in your bank account, however, you must use a card and enter a personal identification number (PIN). Or you head to an e-commerce site to buy some presents. You enter your password — but your cellphone buzzes. The site has texted you a code you need to log in to start shopping. These are examples of two-factor authentication or 2FA. This is a form of security that requires users to show at least two — and on occasion three — forms of identity to log on or access a network.

What Is 2FA?

It’s a newer, more modern form of cybersecurity. Google conducted a study and found that adding a phone number recovery to accounts, and then sending text messages to that account whenever someone logs in, blocked 100% of automated bots, 96% of bulk phishing attacks, and 76% of targeted attacks.

When it comes to securing data online, passwords can be ineffective, especially if people use similar ones across multiple accounts or use birthdays and any other personal information that can be accessed online.

As its name implies, two-factor authentication includes another layer of protection against cybercriminals.

Here are the three factors of authentication that make life tough for anyone trying to compromise your data:

1. Knowledge

This is something only you would know, such as a PIN number, password or in some instances, a passphrase. This is the easiest one to steal, which is why other factors are required.

2. Possession

It’s rare that a hacker can steal your password and something like a bank card or key fob, which is what makes this factor so important. Other examples include an app on your phone or a software token.

3. Inheritance

Otherwise known as what you are, this is probably the hardest factor to compromise. This is verified by anything unique to you physically, such as a retinal scan, fingerprint, or voice/facial recognition.

4. Mix it Up

Authentication is effective only when using two different factors rather than multifactors. For example, requiring users to present both a fingerprint and a key fob ensures far more security than asking them to enter two passwords.

Partnering With Strong Security

Two-factor authentication is the sophisticated security businesses need to stave off cybercriminals, who are becoming more and more audacious by the day. Old, cookie-cutter forms of security won’t cut it anymore. The more layers, the better. And requiring users to add various forms of identification is a big step toward propelling your security forward. Reach out to us today to learn more about the cybersecurity we offer and book a no-risk, no-cost security assessment. We’ll evaluate the state of your security and work with you on how to fix it.

Book a call with our team of experts.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

ransomware attacks orlando

Ransomware Attacks in Orlando Are Imminent

The FBI and Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) recently announced a public service warning of ransomware attacks looming on the horizon. With attacks on the rise, particularly surrounding holidays and weekends, Sentry IT Solutions urges Orlando-based businesses of all sizes to remain vigilant throughout the rest of the year.

This year is on track to being one of the darkest for cybercrime. In fact, the first six months of this calendar year saw a 151% increase in attacks compared to the same time last year.

While your business is at higher risk of encountering ransomware, the Sentry IT Solutions team is proactively working to keep our community safe and provide 360-degree ransomware protection. As your local cybersecurity experts, we understand our civic duty in protecting your business and staying ahead of the latest threats.

How Cyberthreats Infiltrate Businesses

Cybercriminals today are masters of deception and social engineering. They use believable phishing emails disguised as trusted brands to manipulate people into revealing their sensitive information.

These messages alert you of supposed purchases made to your account or potential compromises to your account, urging you to click a link or download an attachment. At first glance, they appear legitimate, and one wrong click in less than a second’s time can provide a floodgate of trouble for your business.

Your data becomes encrypted, the ransom alert and timer are set, and pressure is put on your business from all angles. Long gone are the days when a ransomware attack focused solely on your business. Now, they reach out to your clients and investors, sharing that their data is compromised as a result and increase pressure exponentially to have you pay out fast and big.

That's when you’ll really feel your back is up against a wall.

The Latest Ransomware Tools

The techniques and tools behind ransomware attacks are becoming more sophisticated alongside their social savviness. Here are just a few of the latest ransomware tools in circulation.

  • CryptoWall — infiltrates operating systems with an email and fake downloads
  • Locky — Microsoft Word document that’s sent through email and contains malicious macros
  • TorrentLocker — targets Microsoft Windows and uses malware to encrypt the victim’s files before demanding ransom
  • CTB-Locker — encrypts files on a hard disk and demands ransom; known for high infection rates
  • CrypVault — renames a file extension to “.vault” to make it seem like it’s already quarantined by anti-malware

Keeping track of these and thousands of other methods isn’t realistic for the everyday businessman or woman. However, Sentry IT Solutions is well-versed in the most advanced ransomware attack strategies and ransomware prevention methods in today’s market. We use sophisticated, zero trust methods to keep your data locked down, yet still accessible and intuitive for those who should be accessing it.

A Cost Beyond Dollar Figures

According to research by the National Security Institute, the average ransomware demand is a steep $200,000 and can be tempting to pay out and try to recover over time. After all, it’s a worthwhile price to pay to get your business and client’s critical data back, right?

But the costs go far beyond the initial ransom request.

If you pay, you’re increasing the risk of your business being flagged for retargeting, and potentially won’t get your data back despite following the ransom instructions. In fact, more than nine out of 10 victims of ransomware never get their data back.

Additionally, they are beginning to reach out to those you do business with, breeding a cloud of mistrust and potentially lost business and reputational damage that lingers for years to come. This creates a cycle of decreased ROI, increased risk and, for many, the end to their business altogether.

The overwhelming consensus: save your business by investing in preventative measures, rather than paying the ultimate price when it’s too late.

What Does Ransomware Protection Look Like?

Although the problem can feel insurmountable and overwhelming, there are many strategies we can help implement to defend your business. Here are just a few of our suggestions:

  1. Train Your Team: Cybersecurity training is a must. Forbes notes that human error accounts for 95 percent of cybersecurity breaches. So, investing in all the right tools may be useless if your employee’s digital behavior is your weakest link. However, with frequent and proper training, they can become your first line of defense and greatest asset in cybersecurity efforts.
  2. Update Your Software as Soon as You’re Prompted: While having to restart your computer can feel like a pain during your midday activities, it’s critical to the health of your business. Software updates seal the cracks where attackers could potentially let themselves into your systems. However, expert managed security partners can work with your team to create an automated updates schedule that minimizes interruptions to your operations.
  3. Adjust Your Security to Factor in Remote Workers: Nearly 70 percent of organizations have experienced a compromise because of a remote office or roaming user. Yet, most users don’t use the proper VPNs to account for travelling or remote employees. With the right VPN in place, you can disguise your network and secure your data against external threats.

It’s Time to Partner with an MSP

There’s never been a more pressing time to seek out expert cybersecurity support, and the expertise at Sentry IT Solutions goes well beyond ransomware prevention. We assess your current technology infrastructure and arm your business with a comprehensive strategy required to defend your data. In addition to increased security, we offer a wide spectrum of services that equip your business to operate more efficiently and intuitively.

There will always be risks in operating a business, but with Sentry IT Solutions, you can rest assured knowing you’re in good hands.

To request a security assessment and gauge your risk of a ransomware attack in Orlando, reach out to one of our experts today.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

cybersecurity training orlando

4 Painless Ways to Integrate Cybersecurity Training in Orlando

Your employees get a ton of emails each day. They are faced continually with messages from vendors asking them to click on a link to, say, avoid their beloved binge-show channel getting canceled due to nonpayment.

They click. They get redirected to a fraudulent site (which looks a lot like the trusted one). They give out their login info.

That’s all it takes for a cybercriminal to access their account and any information stored there, perhaps to sell on the dark web.

With 95% of cybersecurity breaches caused by human error, according to IBM, maybe it’s time to think about more proactive ways to defend your business, such as implementing cybersecurity training.

Employees are the most common targets for cybercriminals, according to Entrepreneur, despite firewalls and security software.

But with cybersecurity solutions, your employees can graduate to become your biggest defender.

Here are the top four ways you can get your team up to speed:

  1. Make it easy on them — Give your employees paid time to watch videos, read guides and talk with IT professionals. Help them understand the threats that lurk and can cause data breaches, from phishing scams to ransomware attacks. Consider rewards as incentives once they pass security quizzes and tests.
  2. Hold everyone to the same standard — Just because she’s been CEO for five years doesn’t mean she’s any more able to prevent a data breach than the new guy who’s still figuring out the coffee machine. Trust everyone equally and put all your employees on a level landscape when it comes to security.
  3. Keep it fun — Some companies give out prizes for the employees who successfully thwart a phishing scam, even though it’s a simulation. Remember when your favorite teacher made geography a fun subject? When your employees treat cybersecurity training as an exciting and competitive game, they learn in the process, and your business is better protected.
  4. Outsource training to your MSP — As a business owner, you may not have the time to provide your staff with adequate training. You may also not know best security practices, and that’s okay because you can still get proactive with cybersecurity solutions. At Sentry IT Solutions, we know exactly how to teach your employees to protect your sensitive data, leaving you to concentrate on your business.

While cybercriminals are busy thinking of new ways to seize your data and sell it on the dark web, you can outwit them using your most valuable asset: your employees.

With data breaches increasing in intensity and frequency and cybercrimes getting more and more complex, it’s time to arm your team.

Give your employees the knowledge they need to protect your business. At Sentry IT Solutions, we teach all your employees, from the top of the rung to the new hires, how to improve their cybersecurity awareness. We give everyone on your team the instruction they need to engage in best practice policies that are sure to thwart the bad guys.

Interested in learning more about cybersecurity training in location? Consult the experts at Sentry IT Solutions.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Dark Web Cybersecurity in Orlando – 4 Ways to Stay Proactive and Secure

At Sentry IT Solutions, we see all too frequently hardworking businesses just like yours halted in their tracks due to cybersecurity breaches stemming from the dark web. Cybercrimes are surging, as a result of our technological advancements and the digital era we live in. On average, Ponemon found that hackers and cybercriminals cost organizations $607,745 per incident. And as if that’s not bad enough, nearly 60 percent of small businesses must close within six months of a cyberattack due to financial and reputational strains.

But the threat doesn’t end with your company. Oftentimes, data and credentials find their way into the dark web, a complex network cloaked in unidentifiable VPNs where anonymity facilitates a playground for criminal activity.

Experian compiled a list of what your data sells for on the black market. Nonfinancial login credentials go for as low as $1. Payment service logins, like PayPal, can fetch criminals up to $200. And for those dealing with medical records — those can sell for up to $1,000!

So, what can you do to fight back against these malicious acts? Here are four ways to maintain dark web protection in the Orlando area and keep your data safe and sound.

1. Use Threat Monitoring and Response Tools:

These specialized scanners identify and monitor at-risk credentials and send alerts when hackers try to access your sensitive information. They notify you as to which information is compromised, giving you time to respond and secure your identity and accounts. Threat scanning helps you react quickly so you can mitigate your risks.

2. Dark Web Education:

You can train your employees to act and react with company security in mind. Through security awareness and phishing simulations, your staff can learn how to better protect and defend your data. Regular cybersecurity trainings can also help ensure that everyone understands the newest cybersecurity threats and prevention methods.

3. Security Tools:

There's a wide variety of security tools that can be deployed to secure your networks, such as multifactor authentication, single sign-on and secure password vaults. You can also install automated software that continually keeps your passwords fresh and your networks secure.

4. Invest in Quality IT Services:

Manage service providers, like our team, are ready to take 24/7 monitoring and worry off your hands. There's no one-size-fits-all approach to technology solutions, and having an expert understand your unique infrastructure, needs, demands and goals can help ensure you have all the right tools you need, and nothing that you don’t.

Don't Face the Dark Web Alone

With the right technology partner by your side, you can align cybersecurity and dark web protection with your business priorities. At Sentry IT Solutions, we’ll deploy forward-thinking managed services that identify your company’s vulnerabilities and keeps your business operating smoothly. To learn more about our services, reach out to us today!


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

phishing prevention orlando

Phishing Prevention in Orlando Is Easier Than You’d Think

Phishing emails can seem innocent at first, primarily because they appear to come from familiar sources, such as Netflix or Amazon. I mean, who doesn’t love their Netflix and Prime? We all recognize the familiar logos of the services we’ve relied on for so long. So when an email arrives with the right branding and logo, it grabs our attention. The malicious email may read, “we’ve been having trouble with your billing information, and we need you to make an update as soon as possible to continue your service.” That’s just one example of how easily hackers can drag unsuspecting people down to the dark web with malvertising.

Phishing remains the number one threat used in successful data breaches, according to a Verizon Report. Hackers are becoming increasingly advanced with their phishing attacks, putting countless Orlando companies at risk for widespread data breaches and expensive downtime. An unfortunate 60 percent of small businesses shut down for good after experiencing a cyberattack.

In this blog, we’ll go over four phishing prevention strategies you can use to keep your business safe.

Set up Email Security Filters

Phishing prevention is within your control with email security. Email software scans employees’ computers for malicious content, blocking the delivery of potentially threatening emails while allowing safe emails to be delivered. Email security checks for suspicious activity in your email, sorting through inbound, outbound and internal communications to flag potential phishing attacks. Deployed as a cloud service or an on-premises application, email-security tools ensure your employees — and your business — are less likely to fall victim to malware and phishing attacks.

Rely on Backup and Recovery

Did you know that nearly 75 percent of attacks targeting U.S. businesses are successful? With 20 percent of data breaches labeled as phishing scams, hackers are not only increasing their activities; they’ve got a good likelihood of success. But if you’ve kept your data backed up, you’ll increase your recovery time and decrease downtime in case of a data breach. By maintaining backups in several locations and testing often, you’ll mitigate your recovery time in case of a loss.

Employ Security Awareness Training

Phishing sites are found 75 times more often on the Internet than malware sites. And more than one in five data breaches involved phishing. Employees who complete security awareness training are more likely to report suspicious emails to their employers. A report that studied the impact of phishing on businesses found that organizations saw an 87 percent improvement rate in preventative activities, like employees reporting phishing attacks, after one year of training. Instead of being your company’s weak point, your employees can turn into your biggest data defenders thanks to cybersecurity training.

Partner with a Managed Service Provider

Managed service providers, like Sentry IT Solutions, can provide your team with comprehensive phishing prevention and a wide variety of other managed technology and security services. Outsourced technology experts are a fantastic asset to any business, as they hold deep expertise in numerous industries and understand the latest innovations and threats in circulation.

Phishing is just one of the many threats your business faces. If you’re not sure where your cybersecurity stands or you are looking to enhance your current strategies, reach out to Sentry IT Solutions today. Our passion is protecting businesses and showing them that 24/7 peace of mind is attainable with the right IT partner on your side! Contact us today to get started.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

it consulting orlando

Prioritize the Growth of Your Business with IT Consulting Services

IT consulting services are, in simplest terms, advisory services that assist businesses in the process of aligning their technology strategy with their business strategy or model. In the process, the consultant or team of consulting professionals helps your business assess IT needs, the current state of IT infrastructure and formulate an industry-specific implementation plan that addresses the unique needs of your business. When you think of IT consulting for your Orlando business, you probably think of these services as a means to solve technology problems, deploy new technology and even improve business performance.

However, these advisory services can also drive the growth and boost the productivity of your business. Continue reading to see how you can prioritize the growth of your business with the assistance of an outsourced IT support provider, such as Sentry IT Solutions.

Avoid a Piecemeal Approach

One of the biggest problems for businesses when it comes to prioritizing growth and scalability is a fragmented approach to IT solutions. This leads companies to unwittingly purchase, implement and manage overlapping solutions that are neither cost-efficient nor procedurally effective. You’re then left paying exorbitant amounts of money for software, hardware, equipment or features your business simply does not need. Not only are you duplicating specific functionality, but you’re also leaving yourself vulnerable to missing certain functionality down the line.

Instead, you should invest in an IT consultant who can provide your business with less costly solutions. This equips your company with adequate storage space and compatible software, providing long-term upgrades and future discounts that you can benefit from. Your business will save money, free up valuable space and position your organization for future growth.

Benefit from In-depth Knowledge

If your business is like many other small and midsized companies, your in-house IT staff is likely composed of generalists who have basic knowledge across a wide range of technology areas. These types of companies can get by just fine handling their day-to-day responsibilities and minor security conflicts that arise. However, for businesses looking to drive growth and boost their bottom line in the process, it's critical to invest in a managed IT provider with specialized knowledge that can provide the smart solutions you require. This allows for no second guessing, as a technology expert enables you to make smart, confident technology decisions that maximize your budget and prepare your business for future growth.

Easily Scale Up or Down

Scalability is a critical aspect of business growth and development. The only way to achieve scalability, however, is to focus on improving the profitability and efficiency of your services to sustain your operations even when your workload increases. One great method of prioritizing the scalability of your business is choosing the right pricing model for your IT services, such as IT helpdesk support, network services, server management and backend disaster recovery.

When you partner with an IT consulting professional Orlando, we’ll recommend that your business invests in a budget-conscious IT plan that allows you to easily scale up or down when your business needs change. You’ll reserve the remaining business funds for other needs. Optimize critical operations, improve productivity and watch your business grow.

Prepare for Growth

It's time to partner with an IT consultant from Sentry IT Solutions who can provide you with your ideal managed IT services. We’ll work with you every step of the way to identify your business’s areas of weakness and what processes can be improved to better serve your company.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

proactive cybersecurity

How to Take a Proactive Approach to Cybersecurity

Each year, the volume of cybersecurity threats continues to steadily climb, with more than one billion malware programs out there and approximately 560,000 new pieces of malware being detected each day. All the while, regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are constantly evolving. This means even the most minor of security breaches can be incredibly devastating for your organization, leading to negative publicity, hefty fines and a loss of confidence in your brand.  

At Sentry IT Solutions, we can help you implement a proactive approach to cybersecurity that sees your business is protected on all fronts in a dynamic, complex and ever-evolving threat landscape. This means understanding your organization, including its systems, applications and user base, identifying where vulnerabilities lie and addressing security risks before an attack ever occurs. This article will delve into how to do just that with a dedicated technology partner by your side.  

Identify and Evaluate Risks for Assets That Could Be Affected by Cyberattacks 

A proactive approach to cybersecurity is all about understanding, managing and mitigating risk to your company’s critical assets. The easiest way to accomplish this mission and ensure any shortfalls in your IT infrastructure are properly addressed is to conduct a comprehensive risk assessment. Here are a few basic steps to ensure a smooth risk assessment within your organization:  

  1. Identify and Prioritize Assets: Here is where you will determine the scope of the assessment and decide which valuable assets attackers may wish to target.  
  2. Identify Threats: A cyberthreat is anything that could cause harm to your organization, such as hardware failure, natural disasters, human error and more.  
  3. Identify Vulnerabilities: This is where you’ll identify any vulnerabilities that could be exploited to breach security and cause harm or steal data from your organization. 
  4. Analyze Controls: These are any controls that are in place to mitigate or eliminate the possibility of a cyberthreat. They should be classified as either preventative or detective. 
  5. Calculate the Likelihood of an Attack: At this point, you can determine the likelihood of a given attack considering the current control environment your organization has in place. 
  6. Develop a Risk Assessment Report: Finally, you can develop a risk management report that supports management in decision-making on cybersecurity budget, policies and procedures.  

Invest in Preventative Cybersecurity Measures 

Just like there is not one security product that can completely encompass all your organization’s vulnerabilities, there is not a single cybersecurity policy that can sufficiently address all the needs of your business. Instead, it’s time to invest in a multi-layered, integrated cybersecurity strategy that covers many core areas of cybersecurity, including network security, cloud security, application security, Internet of Things (IoT) security and more. To lay the foundation for a solid cybersecurity strategy, it’s important to do the following: 

  • Understand the risks your organization faces on a daily basis 
  • Establish protective monitoring to detect and mitigate these threats 
  • Prepare secure data backups that keep your business up and running in the event of an attack 
  • Revisit your cybersecurity strategy as your organization changes and evolves over time 

Never Underestimate the Power of Cybersecurity Training 

A proactive approach to cybersecurity begins with awareness. While lack of proper training can leave employees more than vulnerable to releasing cyberattacks on to your organization, diverting resources into proper cybersecurity training could very well mean the difference between the success and failure of your business. The responsibility always lies on the employer to ensure that your employees have the knowledge they need to make the right decisions and where to turn if they have any questions related to cybersecurity. To prioritize cybersecurity training for your employees, we recommend getting executive buy-in, start training early and often and making the security health of your organization an ongoing, team effort. 

Stop Relying on Reactive Cybersecurity Measures Alone to Protect Your Business 

If your company’s current cybersecurity strategy is limited to firewalls, antivirus or anti-malware software, ad blockers and other measures put in place to spot the tell-tale signs of a security breach, there’s a good chance that you already have a reactive cybersecurity strategy in place. Unfortunately, reactive cybersecurity measures on their own are not enough to comprise a strong cybersecurity defense. You need to have a combination of both proactive and reactive measures in order to actively prevent data breaches and mitigate cyberthreats. For more cybersecurity solutions, include cloud security services, contact the experts at Sentry IT Solutions.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Cloud Services to Increase Business Productivity

The right cloud services has the potential to vastly improve a business’s overall efficiency, performance and productivity. However, when it comes to choosing the right technology for your workplace, it can be difficult to select the best options out of the myriad of options available today. With that in mind, let’s delve into how the right technology can improve workplace productivity, enhance your business and help you meet your goals.

Remember, if you’re looking for assistance with increasing business communication and productivity, contact the technology experts at Sentry Technology Solutions. We’re happy to discuss cloud services and other options that can improve your operations.

Trust in the Cloud to Accelerate Workflows and Minimize Downtime

In recent years, the process of virtualizing workloads and moving on-site applications to the cloud has become well-accepted. From the inherent flexibility to the scalability, businesses across the globe are recognizing and adopting some form of a cloud infrastructure. Whether you’re looking to deploy an application or collaborate with remote employees, the cloud offers a myriad of possibilities.

In addition to cutting down the amount of time it takes to complete projects, the cloud also makes protecting your critical data, systems and devices much easier with a safe backup and recovery plan.

Master Accessibility and Collaboration with VoIP

There was a time when complex and expensive telecommunications systems weren’t an option for most small to medium-sized businesses. Nowadays, there are several innovative solutions to choose from, including Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). With VoIP, telecommuting and remote collaboration has never been easier. Your employees have access to the information they need around the clock with no gaps in service — all they need is a stable internet connection.

So, put the intelligence into a network rather than a headset, and enjoy the streamlined communication and boosted productivity that VoIP offers. Your employees will never be out of contact with customers or fail to have access to the information they need simply because they’re away from their desk or working remotely.

Turn to Mobile Equipment to Increase Efficiencies

Today, more and more businesses are leveraging mobility to streamline their workflows and increase employee productivity. With modern day smartphones, tablets and laptops, lugging a lot of equipment around or being tied to an office are no longer issues. Implementing mobile workstations means your employees can access company data and resources from anywhere in the world – in the office, at home or working in the field.

Remote work options can also lead to happier, more engaged and more productive workers. From checking an email on the road to participating in a conference call from home, employees can be mobile and still get business done.

Invest in Flexible Technology

When you’re immersed in the day-to-day challenges of operating a business, you may struggle to see the big picture. Carve out some time to consider how implementing flexible technology like cloud services and VoIP can boost productivity. For expert guidance, contact Sentry Technology Solutions. We can discuss your business goals and recommend appropriate, affordable IT solutions.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

data security

5 Data Security Risks When Working Remote and How You Can Defend Against Them

In a study of business leaders performed by Accenture, 68 percent feel their cybersecurity risks are increasing – and rightfully so! Based on data provided by Cisco, cybercrimes are on track to surpass all the global trade of all major drugs combined. That begs the question, how do we maintain our business’s data security, especially with the global shift to remote work? In this article, you’ll learn the risks that accompany a digital presence, and how you can prepare your team for optimizing work from home security.

Risk #1 – Using public or unsecured networks.

With employees having more freedom to select their work environment, many choose to trade in their home offices or kitchen tables for a local coffee shop or co-workspace. While the change in scenery can help boost morale, it’s a serious data security risk to consider for businesses. When employees access company information from unsecure networks and public Wi-Fi, they create an open door for potential hackers to gain entry.

The Solution:

Having an external network for remote access is one solution that can help improve business privacy and data security. External networks create a degree of separation to isolate data breaches and protect your private network. Another solution is to set up a virtual private network (VPN) to act as a private network gateway. A VPN extends your business’s private network across a public one. This allows for added work from home security because it grants employees secure access from any device and a safe space for them to perform daily work. And as a rule of thumb, only use SSL connections (“HTTPS”) when accessing anything on the Internet.

Risk #2 – Easy access points through personal devices.

Another risk to public and personal devices is the ease of penetration hackers have through them into sensitive company materials. According to a survey by Google in 2019, 65 percent of people reuse the same password across multiple platforms. This explains why the Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report found that compromised passwords directly cause 81 percent of hacking-related breaches. In addition, personal devices cannot be controlled and audited for frequent updates, security software and access to potentially harmful content.

The Solution:

Having access to devices utilized through the provision of company-owned devices is a guaranteed way to mitigate risk and improve private information security. If you’re also in an industry that relies on mobile devices to accomplish work-related tasks on the go, it’s advisable to implement a mobile device management solution to prevent data breaches should a smartphone or tablet ever be lost or stolen.

If these options are not feasible for your company, providing clear instructions regarding password best practices and which devices and software are permitted can add an extra layer of security. By ensuring employees are not installing potentially malicious software and maintaining strong, unique passwords that are updated over time, you can create an extra line of defense against cyberthreats.

Additional security measures include the use of multi-factor authentication, data encryption and session locking mechanisms. These actions will help detect suspicious behavior and deter hackers from breaching your system.

Risk #3 – Using outmoded software and technology.

The 2020 Kaspersky Global Corporate IT Security Risks Survey found that businesses utilizing outdated technology suffered far more frequent data breaches (65%) than counterparts who kept their technology up to date (29%). Not only does it pose a security risk, but outdated technology works against your team’s efforts to collaborate, utilize their time efficiently and communicate key information effectively. This can bottle-neck your projects and waste valuable time and money spent on each deliverable.

The Solution:

Choosing cloud-based collaboration tools provides a dual benefit for your team with the ability to keep software and technology updated and an extra layer of protection via cloud security. Cloud-based technology and software ensure that every user on the platform maintains updates, as it is managed by an overarching administrator, and it ensures the highest level of security cyberthreats. The company-protected cloud will give your business peace of mind through the ability to backup data, monitor and control data security, and maintain necessary defenses against lurking threats. Just be sure that your employees maintain business privacy by not storing cloud-based company data on their personal devices.

Risk #4 – Slow responses to suspected or known data breaches.

Based on a study by the University of Maryland, every 39 seconds a hacker strikes. Yet, for the prevalence of hacker attacks, it can take nearly 197 days to identify and 69 days to contain a breach according to IBM. Those numbers don’t bode well for businesses! So, how can organizations protect their data privacy and ward off threats?

The Solution:

The best offense is a great defense. And much like on the field, it’s key that everyone involved on the team understands the plan. By training your entire staff about current data security risks and signs of potential cyberthreats and data breaches, you’ll have more eyes watching for potentially suspicious activity. These trainings don’t require team members to be IT experts, but it will help your IT experts stay ahead of weak spots, areas of concern and instances of private information security being compromised.

Coupled with a vigilant team, data loss prevention (DLP) strategies are measures that can be set in place to preserve your data in the event of a natural or manmade disaster striking. These plans work to prioritize data, learn risks, closely monitor data movement and ensure that backups are regularly implemented to swiftly restore order back to your business.

Risk #5 – Not staying on top of software updates.

If you had a hole in the side of your house, odds are, you wouldn’t leave it exposed for long. The same mentality should be transposed in cyberspace. By not updating software regularly, your technology won’t be dexterous against active hackers and digital threats. As tempting as the remind me later button may be on update notifications, the time and money that companies would have to spend after data breaches is far too precious to risk.

The Solution:

This is, again, where cloud-based collaboration tools can be wisely implemented. The ability to control your entire network’s technology updates and regularly update company-wide hardware and software through patching updates will keep your ahead of cyber vulnerabilities. It’s important to have an expert overseeing these updates to ensure that updates don’t disrupt function and compatibility of your technology and create a blind spot in your defenses.

Have an expert on top of your data security.

When it comes to the costs of your business and data privacy, you can never be too safe. That’s where we come in. We provide top-tier, customizable managed IT services to help keep your business secure and your focus on your goals. Our team of experts will ensure your private information security is up to date, maintained, and preventative against data breaches and losses. To discover more about how we can support your business, contact us today!


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Remote Work Collaboration: Improve the Way Your Team Works Together While Apart 

With the pivotal shift in remote work options looking to become a lasting effect of 2020, employers are experiencing both the perks and pitfalls of this new teamwork and collaboration trend. According to LinkedIn’s 10 Insights from Talent Leaders, “recent research shows that the number of permanent remote workers is expected to double in 2021”. However, flexible work locations add a new layer of intricacy into cultivating a positive work environment, maintaining structure and efficiency on a day-to-day basis. That leaves us with the question on the table – how do we as employers improve team collaboration, mitigate burnout, and keep our staff on track? Read on and we will share our top tips for empowering your remote workforce to put you back in the driver’s seat of your well-oiled machine.

Tip #1: Set Clear Boundaries and Expectations for Collaboration

A critical component to any work from home employment is the establishment of clear-cut expectations for communication and visibility. Setting the stage for proper modes of communication, remote work boundaries and channels of information storage are vital to maintain a healthy pulse on the company and ensure you don’t lose visibility.

Remote collaboration tools are designed with this specific function in mind and are a great way to keep track of projects, silo project-related tasks, and provide user-friendly options for even the least tech-savvy team members.

Task tracking platforms for both high-level and granular project updates:

Make sure to communicate what information is best shared on instant messaging platforms, such as Slack or Microsoft Teams, and what should be logged in your project management software. This will help keep your visibility clear, your communication effective and work from bottlenecking.

Tip #2: Minimize Burnout for Maximized Results

According to Harvard Business Review, the lack of face-to-face communication and workplace environmental changes have led to increased cases of burnout in companies that did not alter their workplace practices as part of their shift to remote work. We now can see how we took for granted body language in conversation, tones of voice, and equitable workplace positivity through a single gesture.

Nowadays, employers must work consciously towards the creation of digital work culture if they want to yield quality results and healthy employees. Utilize options like Bonusly for cross-team engagement that facilitates visible recognition and positivity.

Great VoIP tools to regain the sense of interpersonal communication:

These can also be used to host team meetups after a long workday, group collaboration and brainstorming sessions, and standard one-on-ones where tone and delivery of information are key. The last thing you need in your business is a slew of miscommunication to add fuel to fires.

Tip #3: Keep Your Head Up in the Cloud

With work from home collaboration stretching across cities, states, or even countries – it’s imperative that you have all of your data stored in one centralized location. Now that we’re all working digitally, cloud-based technology is your best option for backing up your precious data.

Why telework employers can’t rely on an individual’s technology:

  • Being spread across geographic regions can leave employees susceptible to varied weather events and power outages that could lead to data loss in a snap.
  • Employees can fall victim to cybercrimes and ransomware ploys more easily when communication is not streamlined with specific boundaries outlined.

The cloud provides a failsafe solution for storing data over time. The cloud also reduces your physical footprint and allows for easy recovery should the worst-case scenario occur. The ability to retrieve data and reimplement if one should lose it could be a lifesaver for your business and your consumers!

Provide Your Remote Team with What they Need to Succeed

Technology is constantly evolving and maintaining the tools you need to succeed can take a lot of time. That’s where partnerships with IT experts can step in and reduce your headache. We’re here to empower you to empower your team for success. To get your remote workforce started on the right foot today, (CTA) download the Ultimate Guide to Empowering Your Remote Workforce and navigate the digital path for continual growth with remote collaboration.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter