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corona virus (covid 19)

With Employees Working Remotely, You Have New Security Risks


While emerging companies increasingly leverage remote workers, the COVID-19 outbreak has caused many companies to adopt the same practice en masse.

Hackers are well aware.

Not only did those bad actors immediately try to capitalize with an array of Coronavirus-related phishing emails, now their cute little stunt is sharing infection maps that are laden with malware: https://www.techradar.com/news/hackers-are-spreading-malware-through-coronavirus-maps.

As an aside, here is a safe version of such a map from the WHO: https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/685d0ace521648f8a5beeeee1b9125cd

Now, back to that new attack vector…

With so many employees working remotely, are you certain their devices are safe from attack? We ask because while many companies do a good job of protecting their network infrastructure (servers, domain controllers, etc.), security on the laptop or mobile device is often lacking.

If a company is unsure of the efficacy of its hosted endpoint security protection, NOW is the time to do a review. If you need some help, we’re here and are actively conducting such reviews on behalf of new clients; we have the expertise, know the vendors and their various feature sets to help find the right fit for organizations of all sizes.

In the meantime, let us also share some useful information below relating to COVID-19, links we provided to our clients recently. Feel free to copy and paste this information for sharing with your workforce… and stay safe out there!

– The Cynexlink Cybersecurity Team

Now, for those resources:

The U.S Department of Homeland Security has issued a warning with regard to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and its impact on technology within personal, business and professional settings.

It is advised that individuals be on alert for scams related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Cyber actors may send emails with malicious attachments or links to fraudulent websites to trick victims into revealing sensitive information or donating to fraudulent charities or causes. Exercise caution in handling any email with a COVID-19-related subject line, attachment, or hyperlink, and be wary of social media pleas, texts, or calls related to COVID-19

The Hyperlinks below are to federal government websites and have been verified by us as valid/safe

The Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) encourages individuals to remain vigilant and take the following precautions.

  • Avoid clicking on links in unsolicited emails and be wary of email attachments. See Using Caution with Email Attachments and Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Scams for more information.
  • Use trusted sources—such as legitimate, government websites—for up-to-date, fact-based information about COVID-19.
  • Do not reveal personal or financial information in email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information.
  • Verify a charity’s authenticity before making donations. Review the Federal Trade Commission’s page on Charity Scams for more information.
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Benefits of Managed IT services

How Managed IT Services Benefit Your Small Business


Introduction

Managed IT services let businesses to outsource their IT operations to a third party vendor being specialized in managing such responsibilities. It is a service model in which IT operations are outsourced to a third-party vendor who maintains and manages functions like running apps, data recovery, databases, security, and storage. It helps small businesses to focus on their core competencies and reduce unexpected costs as well.

Today’s technology has helped the organization achieve its goals.

Retailers rely on beacons to personalize their marketing messages. Hospitals utilize certain tools to track their patients and understand their experiences. Schools use learning software to keep students engaged while hotels use apps to streamline check-ins.

While new technologies have empowered organizations, they also pose several challenges. The unprecedented pace of changes in IT has obsoleted the trend of “relying on a few computers and apps”.

The boom of mobile devices and cloud technologies has created the jumble of devices, apps, and platforms, making it challenging for IT departments to manage and secure their resources.

It simply means that organizations need to invest in sophisticated technology and more skilled staff.

What about small businesses?

They are less likely to afford the cost of hiring, purchasing new equipment and keeping systems up to date and protected.

Enter managed IT services.

Here we have rounded up such benefits of managed IT support for your business.

Helping You Save Money and Time:

Running a small business is not easy, especially when it comes to day to day IT operations. They need more staff and equipment to stay competitive. And it takes the most of their budget.

Sadly, not all small businesses can afford to spend a huge part of their capital on their IT operations.

Time and Money

This is where managed IT support comes in.

Opting for a managed IT service provider can help you save money and time. It minimizes the need for hiring staff or making costly hardware purchases. An MSP provider will take care of your IT operations at the fraction of the cost coming on your IT personal’s salaries and equipment purchase.

This way, managed IT services help you maximize profitability and productivity.

Ensuring Maximum Uptime:

From that palm-sized mouse to those big servers, every single IT device is important in your business operation.

If a breakdown happens in your IT ecosystem, it leads to downtime which in turn affects your critical functions. With managed IT provider, you can focus on the core competencies of your business. An MSP vendor will fix your IT issues and keep your network up and running.

up work Time

Keeping Security Concerns at Bay:

Another benefit of working with a managed IT, vendor!

Most managed IT services also provide cybersecurity. For example, they check your network for vulnerability and fix it before it can lead to a big problem. They can also limit access to the application to authorized personals only. Moreover, your devices will be tracked across your organization.

Tailoring to Your Needs:

Right vendors tailor managed IT solutions to your needs, helping you scale up or down your requirements as you grow.

For example, you can choose the important tools or services which matter the most to your business skipping the add-ons or extras.

Being Affordable:

Managed IT services are typically affordable and available according to your budget. They are based on a pay per use model, meaning you pay for them as long as you are utilizing them. In other words, you get the services on rent. You are not required to sign a contract or agreement. You can pay monthly or annually depending on your payment schedule.

Ensuring Data Backup and Recovery:

Data protection is important for all businesses, no matter if you are a retail store or an accounting firm.

From your customer info, accounts, employee record and trade secret, data is one of the most important business assets.

Imagine what would happen if you lose it due to accidental deletion, breakdown, cybercrime or power outage.

Managed IT services also come with a comprehensive data recovery strategy. Most vendors automatically record your data in the form of server backup, regular audits, and vulnerability metrics. They provide you access to those backups so that you can retrieve your data easily in case you have lost it.

CONCLUSION:

Managed IT services are great for small businesses struggling with little to no IT resources. From software development, data backup and recovery, payroll, network monitoring, and systems management to computer support, managed IT support takes care of your operations so that you can focus on growing your business. Make sure to work with the right and experienced managed service provider.

What do you think? Let us know by commenting below.

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Network Visibility

Everything You Want to Know About Network Visibility


What is Network Visibility?

Network visibility is the term used for the collection, aggregation, distribution, and analysis of data traffic flows within and across a network.

With network visibility, you can have great control over network traffic, application, network performance, data analytics, and network resources. This way, you can make informed decisions regarding the traffic and protection of data.

Network Visibility

What are the Benefits of Network Visibility?

  • Monitor and Limit Bandwidth Abuse:

It let you monitor and control users, devices, and applications. If you have more employees or applications in your network, network visibility will let you monitor that source and adjust their access accordingly.

With a better understanding of bandwidth usage, you can create a better quality of service policy.

  • Minimized Downtime:

A detailed view of your entire network lets you locate the source of any problem. Visibility means you can examine problems before they affect your network.

  • Risk Prevention:

It also helps to detect threats. Besides, it lets you identify abnormal network behavior. With improved network visibility, you can view threats and create a security plan accordingly. For example, unauthorized access can be tracked whenever it happens. The same thing goes for detecting malware within encrypted network traffic. You can create and analyze network logs and security devices.

  • Efficient Troubleshooting:

The proactive issue detection system can be planned with network intelligence. Instead of randomly detecting issues, a network admin can troubleshoot the issues with a more detailed and focused approach.

How Cloud and Mobile Pose Challenges to Network Visibility?

There is no doubt that visibility helps you consolidate your data security as you can detect certain issues. But things might get challenging if your network also includes cloud and mobile technology.

The modern WAN is composed of technologies like Internet VPNs, mobile and cloud services, making it difficult for the traditional network monitoring tool to provide visibility across the WAN. Even worse, an organization can be misguided by a false sense of security as they view all the traffic goes over the MPLS link.

Traditionally, network visibility is done by certain security and network monitoring tools such as firewalls, endpoint sensors, and security appliances. While these tools can work effectively when traffic moves within the WAN, they are likely to lose their efficiency when cloud and mobile enter the network.

Luckily, cloud-based SD-WAN can help in this scenario. Read the next point to find out how.

How Cloud-Based SD-WAN Can Help in Network Visibility?

Traditional tools are not effective when cloud and mobile come into play.

Enter cloud-based SD-WAN.

SD-WAN is more effective and flexible than traditional WAN. It is a virtual WAN architecture that lets you use any combination of services—including MPLS, LTE and broadband internet services. This technology uses a centralized control function to securely direct traffic across the WAN. SD-WAN technology comes with a wide range of sophisticated security features, such as IPS, NGFW, encryption and sandboxing to add an extra layer of security to your network.

Software-Defined WAN helps you track what’s going on in the network, including online and registered appliances. Consequently, you can monitor network events, site and tunnel status, report-based usages, and availability of data on your overall network.

In a nutshell, SD-WAN should be preferred if your network includes cloud and mobile technology.

Network visibility helps determine the behavior of data as well as the detection of issues over your network.

What do you think? Let us know by commenting below!

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Does Social Media Really Bring Us Closer?


The impact of social media on our relations has been a subject of debate for a long time.

From identifying its countless advantages to discovering its potential drawbacks, let’s take a closer look at how social media can affect us daily.

Truth be told, social media plays a crucial role in erasing the distance between people who are far away from each other. It brings them closer by enabling them to connect at any given moment, wherever they are.

Not only that, but it can also keep you updated on the latest events in their lives. You can always check their profiles and learn about almost everything that is going on with them.

However, it all comes with a downside. While social media does make the world smaller and bring far people closer, it can, at the same time, be a real obstacle for face to face communication with those already next to us.

When you let yourself dive into the world of social media and all its attractive features to communicate and share pictures and even locations, you may find yourself drifting further and further away from people who are already close to you.

At Cynexlink, we believe that the digital era we are in today has many benefits on different aspects of our lives. Nevertheless, we insist on the importance of finding the balance between the virtual world and reality.

So, the next time you find yourself losing awareness of the people you are with, it may be time to disconnect from your phone and connect with those surrounding you. After all, nothing matches the warmth and affection we can sense when we directly communicate with the people we appreciate.

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