security

Employees-weakest-link

Why Employees are the Weakest Link in Your Cybersecurity Business


When many business leaders consider the security of their operation, the first things that come to mind are locks on the doors, proper outdoor lighting, and perhaps a security guard on-site, then they begin to look inward and consider their cybersecurity. Toward that end, they invest in the latest and greatest firewalls, antivirus, anti-malware, firmware, and other software fixes while overlooking the most important aspect of their security integrity: their employees.  Why are employees your greatest cybersecurity threat and what are you to do about it?

The very nature of human beings with their curiosity and need for stimulation, information, and novelty makes them the prime target for hackers who want to infiltrate your business network and its data.

Therefore, the full buy-in of the company security endeavors will require an alliance between IT, which should understand your operating needs, and HR, which should comprehend the foibles and psychology of human beings that can make them gateways to cyberattacks.

Also Read: 

12 Cybersecurity Best Practices for Small Businesses:

It is simply not good enough that your employees remember to update passwords regularly; they need to understand how a hacked company system affects them directly. To this end, your IT team should work with HR to develop training that garners staff support for the security processes that need to be implemented.

Here are a few of the issues this composite team needs to address:

Impact on the Company of Down Time and Security Breaches

Explain in the clearest terms how downtime in the company network affects everyone. Use examples such as Ransomware or Spear Phishing attacks or other situations in which your business could lose data or computer access – thus affecting the ability of your company to remain in operation and therefore to employ people!

Lack of Awareness

Simple though it may sound, regular training and reiteration of concepts like having strong passwords, proper storage of customer information, use of locking drawers or file cabinets, how the company uses multi-factor authentication, and data access principles should be ongoing practices.

In addition, all personnel should know how to properly dispose of drives, reports, etc. when they are no longer pertinent. Last here is the need to inform employees of the importance of system/software updates for both company equipment and approved BYOD mobile phones and other devices, as well.

Hazards of Using Unsecured Networks –

This is particularly problematic with BYOD environments including commuting vehicles (e.g., the train and subway), cafés, etc. which are typically unsecured networks. Your employees need to be aware that all online activity conducted on such networks can be visible, putting devices and sensitive company information in peril.

To minimize this risk, explain the difference between using HTTP and HTTPS prefixed sites – the later carries encryption protocols – on any device (laptop, smartphone, etc.) used for work-related activities and help them to understand which work is best left to be performed in the office on company secured devices.

Another off-site peril comes from Juice jacking (stealing data by monitoring public charging stations) in which a hacked wireless charging port can allow cybercriminals to record what is being written or watched on a device as well as download programs to said device.

Personnel who frequently work outside the office should be trained to understand the risks of using public access networks and a few means of minimizing same, such as plugging into an electrical outlet or using their own power bank, having different passwords for each app and device they use, and waiting to perform personal interactions until at home and only installing apps from official marketplaces.

Best, have them use a VPN (Virtual Private Network) set up by your IT team that provides for encryption of data moving between them and any end-user whether they are at home, traveling, or otherwise working outside the office.

IoT (Internet of Things): a Door to System Access –

With the growing complexity of the business operating environment, you may find you have manufacturing equipment as well as simple office equipment such as printers connected wirelessly to your server. These additional pathways offer opportunities for an employee to involuntarily undermine your security by tapping into equipment not meant to be part of their peripherals.

In order to minimize this risk, have your IT team set up not only different passwords for this equipment but different router levels, as well, which prevents certain devices from ever ‘seeing’ other devices they shouldn’t. Turning off equipment when not in use will help to mitigate cross-system access as well.

These steps can also help prevent an unintended internally produced Denial of Service (DoS) attack or Distributed Denial of Service Attack (DDoS) in which equipment or websites crash from an overload of demand.

Don’t forget, your IT team consists of all your employees. To this end, think about the cybersecurity culture you want to create. For instance, have your IT team start broadly sharing new concepts learned trade events, which can keep lines of communication open between departments and can help your staff understand new threats and preventive actions they can take before your business is targeted.

In addition, savvy IT members don’t put all their eggs in one basket; they may like vendor X who provides software X and has worked with them for years but they stay aware of the news of failures of this protective service and are willing to jump ship to vendor Y if that is in the best interest of your company.

Better, working with an outside company, in addition to your in-house staff, who is not a single service provider and whose sole interest is in being knowledgeable about multiple software security tools, techniques and processes and is willing to embrace your company’s unique business protection requirements can be a valuable asset.

Finally, keep in mind that a disgruntled employee with any system access can pose a threat to your business (e.g., copying trademarked or other business-sensitive information for purposes of corporate espionage), and containing them is the territory of HR. However, a coordinated effort between your employees and IT, with the help of training developed actively with HR, will strengthen the personnel link in your cybersecurity chain, in addition to bringing added value to your employee morale due to your consideration of their need to understand, so that they are able to actively participate in protecting your company and their jobs.

Be safe out there!

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Single Sign on

Single Sign-On (SSO): Pros & Cons


Introduction to Single Sign-on:

 

MyFitnessPal had 151 million usernames and passwords stolen. For a third-party Facebook app, it was 540 million.

And First American Financial Corp., the largest real estate title insurance company in the U.S., exposed transaction records of 885 million individuals.

These were just a few of the largest data breaches from last year alone!

What if your organization could avoid such headaches altogether? What if your business managing all of its user logins through a leading SSO system or customized solution?

Who is going to take the time to hack your website when none of your user details is accessible once they get inside?

Welcome to Single Sign-On (SSO). If you’re using it, you know its power and benefits. If you have only heard of SSO but haven’t enabled it, the following information is for you.

Authentication Without SSO

Without SSO, each website or application maintains its own database of usernames and passwords. When a person logs in, the following things happen:

The service runs a scan to determine if you have already been verified. If so, access to the site is then granted.

If no authentication is discovered, the visitor is prompted to log in; the service then checks those credentials vs. what is on file in its own repository.

Once the user has logged in, the service ensures the identity verification info travels with the user he or she navigates the system, meaning that this same user has effectively verified each time a new page within the application is visited.

Such authentication info travels with the user either in the form of cookies with session data or as tokens, which do not track that specific visit and are therefore faster to process.

The SSO Comparison

By contrast to the scenario outlined above, SSO authentication relies on a trust relationship between different web services. Ever been asked to quickly register for a new website with the Google or Facebook account credentials you’re already logged in with? Bingo.

In that instance, the service allowing you to sign-in with another solution’s credentials is simply verifying your identity through the use of a single sign-on. Facebook says you are who you say you are? Good enough for us – come on in!

If the new domain can’t determine you have been authenticated by another website – again, thanks to SSO – you will be sent to the login page for the appropriate SSO service, where you enter the credentials that will provide you access.

Just like in the example above, SSO allows authentication data to move with you throughout the new domain, continually verifying your identity with each new page you visit.

Best of all, SSO authentication data runs as tokens, not cookies, which is good for speed and performance.

Moving forward, SSO continues to authenticate with a solution such as Active Directory, allowing you to visit new domains tied to that single sign-on provider. Because the next website also verifies your credentials with SSO, you pass through the next website without having to login yet again. Good stuff.

SSO Under the Hood

Let’s now dig even deeper into how SSO functions. As we have already learned, when a visitor logs into a new domain, that website or application provider will validate the user on its own. That process goes like this:

  1. As a visitor, you land on a page within, let’s say, xyz123.com which tries to authenticate your login status. If yes, off you go to the desired destination—your Yahoo email inbox, for example.
  2. If you’re not already logged in, it’s time to plug in your user/password combo on the login page.
  3. You fill in your credentials, xyz123.com runs those credentials against the data in its own tables. Depending on what it finds, the service either lifts the velvet rope or the bouncer says you can’t come in.
  4. If you can log in, xyz123.com will its method of tracking your visit. This could originate on the server or it might attach to you as a token.

Again, however you decide to navigate that site or service, that domain keeps checking to ensure that your credentials are valid.

That same process when powered by SSO, however, would go like this:

  1. As a visitor, you land on a page within, let’s say, xyz123.com which tries to authenticate your login status. If yes, off you go to the desired destination—your Yahoo email inbox, for example.
  2.  Not logged in yet? No problem! That new site, xyz123.com, then gives you choices for authentication through another app (Google, Amazon, Facebook, etc.). Click your favorite service and log into the new web app with those pre-existing credentials (let’s say Facebook in this case).
  3.  As far as authentication, Facebook does the authentication for that new website. Once Facebook says you are who you claim to be – and checks to ensure that xyz123.com is legitimate, both sites agree you’re ready to roll.The Facebook password database issues a token that becomes your passport to and through xyz123.com.
  4.  By accepting that token from Facebook, xyz123.com verifies the user’s identity with more ease and confidence. Further, it can now associate the visitor with all other data that’s known about that person, things like preferences, history, shopping cart, etc.

Now let’s discuss the Single Sign-on  Pros and Cons

Single Sign-On(SSO) Pros

For organizations of all kinds, Single Sign-on has many advantages. Among them:

  • It cuts down on password fatigue

    Remembering just one password makes the lives of users or employees so much simpler. In truth, when challenged to use different passwords for different services, most people do not; the vast majority actually use the same password across multiple sites, creating an even bigger risk.

    And as a side benefit, the use of SSO usually results in unusually strong passwords since they only have to use just one.

  • Streamline the management of employee credentials

    When employees turn over, the use of SSO reduces both IT effort and the chances of mistakes. In one shot, departing users lose their login privileges across the entire organization.

  • Single Sign-on enhances identity protection

    With SSO, organizations strengthen identity security within their teams through the use of multifactor authentication (MFA).

  • It boosts speed where counts the most

    In highly regulated industries like healthcare, defence and finance, or large organizations in which many people and departments demand rapid and unfettered access to the same applications, SSO can be extremely helpful.

    It is in environments precisely like these where malware brought on by compromised credentials can literally mean the difference between life and death.

  • SSO relieves stress on helpdesks

    With far fewer employees calling in with password issues, IT teams can focus on critical work that saves the most time and money while also elevating security overall.

  • It reduces 3rd-party security risks.

    Connections between vendors, partners and customers present another threat surface, one which SSO can greatly diminish.

SSO Cons

Despite all the benefits listed above, companies do need to keep in mind possible drawbacks when considering an SSO implementation:

  • Very strong passwords must be demanded and adhered to. If one set of SSO credentials is unveiled, it potentially leads to a cascade of breaches under that user’s umbrella.
  • If SSO goes down, access to all connected services halts. Here is one important reason to exercise great care in choosing an SSO solution. It must be extremely reliable, and plans should be crafted for immediately dealing with any cracks which might present themselves.
  • If your identity provider goes down, so does Single Sign-on. Because your ID vendor’s vulnerability becomes your vulnerability, too, choosing the right set of vendors is of the utmost importance.
  • If your identity provider gets breached, all linked systems could be open to attack. Here is where advance planning is so important.A possible single point of failure like this needs to be considered, avoided it possible, and a response plan should be created in advance. If the right identity provider with top-flight security practices is chosen in the first, place, such planning should never have to be tested. Still, it is best to think through all possible vulnerabilities ahead of time. 
  • An investment of time is required for proper SSO architecture and setup. Because each environment is different, wrinkles in even the most well-thought-out plans can develop. Pause, document, compare vs. best practices and structure of the new system accordingly.
  • SSO is not the ideal solution for multi-user computers. If your team makes a habit of hot-desking, it can be both frustrating and unsafe for users to be constantly toggling on and off with one another.
  • Reduced sign-on (RSO) may be needed in some environments, leading to a greater cost. If a company needs to accommodate users with different levels of access, additional authentication servers may be required.
  • SSO based on social media credentials may not fit. If an employer blocks social media sites and government connections where censorship is involved, the problem here becomes clear.
  • Some SSO-linked sites actually share data with third-party entities. Understanding who’s who in this regard requires thorough homework – or the rock-solid advice of a trusted IT professional.

Providers aplenty

The playing field of leading providers is large and potentially overwhelming, including some familiar names you may be familiar with:

  • Okta
  • Citrix Workspace
  • Duo Security
  • OneLogin
  • LastPass
  • Keeper Password Manager
  • JumpCloud
  • Auth0

…to name just a few.

Cynexlink Can Help

There is no reason for any organization to create its own system or to develop deep SSO expertise. Cynexlink’s team understands available offerings and can help identify the best choices for your company. Contact us to learn more!

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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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Cybersecurity training Tips for Employees

6 Cybersecurity Training Tips For Employees


Cybersecurity Training is very important for employees to survive in an industry dominated by growing virtual crime.

Have you read the WEF2019 Global Risks Report?

The report has listed cyber-attacks among the top five global threats over a decade. Data incident has been listed on the fourth spot.

But if you think your organization is too small to be attacked, here is another spooky survey that says that 43% of online attacks are now aimed at small businesses.

Cyber-threats not only destroy your data but also lead to financial losses, tarnished reputations, and downtime.

No matter what the size of your business, you should make your cybersecurity strong; it all starts with your employees.

This is because employees are often the largest security vulnerability.

They can click on malicious links, exposing your information to cybercriminals. They can use infected devices that can inject the virus into your systems. And above all, they can pose as insider threat or your ex-employee can sell your information to your competitor.

Therefore, there is a need for cybersecurity training for your employees which can be built around the key points given below.

6 Cybersecurity Training Tips For Employees

1. Don’t Blame Your Employees:

In the event of a serious data breach, many employers are likely to blame their ill-fated employees that clicked on the malicious stuff. While it’s true they were the ones to get trapped, accusing an individual of lacking the knowledge is a way to avoid the organization’s responsibility to ensure its employees keep its information protected.

The organization should have a plan to ensure their employees have the knowledge they require making the right decision and knowing whom to ask if they have any security-related questions.

You need to be clear about what to do if anyone has security concerns. It prompts you to create the infrastructure required to share new threats as they occur and get everyone involved in data security.

2. Plan and Create a Solid Security Policy:

You need to create and plan a security policy to cover the appropriate topics and secure the use of the company’s system. Make sure your IT security policy covers everything.

Besides, keep it clear and accessible to everyone in your organization. One more thing—your IT security policy should define the roles and responsibilities for control, enforcing, training, controls, and maintenance.

3. Educate on Password Management:

Password Management is a necessary evil for most business owners. With the IT team failing to remind employees, there needs to be a huge change in attitude if you want to fortify your cybersecurity. Moreover, encourage your employees to use strong passwords. This is important because nearly 81% of security incidents are caused by weak ones.

You can simplify their password management by sharing the tips given below:

  • Use a combination of letters, special characters, and numbers. Get creative with passwords
  • Don’t use simple passwords like ABCD, date of birth or house address
  • Don’t share your passwords with anybody
  • Set different password for every device
  • Change your passwords frequently

4. Make it Mandatory for All:

Fire safety isn’t taught to selected employees, right?

Cybersecurity should be treated in the same way. It should be made a top priority and mandatory for everyone. Your employees should be aware of all old-new threats, no matter if they are into accounts, IT or at the front office. Anyone using a computer should be familiar with basic password security and safe internet browsing practices. Share cybersecurity news regularly.

5. Conduct Regular Cybersecurity Sessions:

Admit it. Documented policies are likely to be read once and never looked at again. Therefore, encourage your employees towards cybersecurity with frequent seminars and quick bursts of training. It will keep them informed, engaged and interested.

These small cybersecurity sessions can be built around the use of passwords, safe use of devices and other security concerns. Make sure to test their knowledge regularly. For example, you can check if they are practicing essential cybersecurity protocols. Do they follow the guidelines? Testing their knowledge and vigilance from time to time is important.

Practice this mock drill:

Send them a fake email to see how many clicks it will get. The results can be shown in the seminar or training session, without revealing the names of the employees who clicked these fake phishing emails.

6. Train Employees to Recognize Phishing Threats:

As we have reviewed, some of the vicious cyber-crimes are caused by human error. Cybercriminals can trick the users into something malicious by using fake email addresses and domains. For example, they might pose themselves as a reputed bank in their emails asking for personal information or bank account details.

In this scenario, employees are required to be taught how to identify such malicious links.

Bottom Line:

There are many more tips on cybersecurity training. However, practicing these key measures will provide overall protection to your data. With improved cybersecurity, you can minimize the risk of cyber-threats across your organization.

It not only secures your system and data but also adds to the reputation of your organization.

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

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oftware Defined Networking SDN

The Primary Benefits of SD-WAN Technology


SD-WAN is an advanced version of WAN.

The traditional WAN is only confined to branch, data center and enterprise. Based on MPLS circuits, while it ensures reliable connectivity and security, it might not be compatible with today’s cloud-centric world.

Here comes SD-WAN!

SD-WAN stands for Software-defined Wide Area Network and is a virtual WAN architecture that lets enterprises 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.

It leads to increased application performance, enhanced user experience, increased business productivity and reduced IT costs.

Here we have rounded up SD-WAN benefits in detail.

 1. Increasing Security:

Let’s accept it. Digital transformation comes with both favorable and unfavorable outcomes.

While it can enhance user experience as well as increase market reach, it can also make any organization prone to critical security threats. That’s a problem, provided that more than 50% of businesses experienced cybersecurity incidents in 2019, according to a recent survey.

SD-WAN technology can be a great help in this context.

Although basic firewall and VPN functions delivered by most SD-WAN solutions are not sufficient, elastic and dynamic SD-WAN can make a difference.

You can opt for SD-WAN technology that is equipped with a wide range of integrated security features, such as IPS, NGFW, encryption, AV and sandboxing that can eliminate the risk of data loss, regulatory violations, legal issues and downtime.

 2. Minimizing Complexities:

Networks are getting complex due to the technical advancements, affecting network performance and burdening IT teams as well.

Luckily, SD-WAN can relieve the IT burden by simplifying WAN infrastructure, utilizing broadband to deactivate non-critical business apps, automating remote tasks, and controlling traffic through a centralized controller. You can consider an SD-WAN service that can be combined with the local brand infrastructure to strengthen the security and management offered by the local LAN.

 3. Enabling Cloud Usage:

Cloud services are on the rise among both small and big enterprises. Another benefit of using SD-WAN is that it supports cloud access at the remote location. This way, it prevents backhauling traffic as it routes all cloud and branch office traffic using the data center.

It means that your IT personal can directly access cloud applications from any location without pinning down the core network with the need to handle additional traffic.

As a bonus, SD-WAN enhances the cloud application performance by stressing business-critical applications and letting your multiple locations to directly communicate.

4. Improving Performance:

Not all network traffic is the same. However, you can configure your SD-WAN to emphasize important traffic and services like VoIP and then run it over the most reliable route.

By delivering important applications through dependable, high-performance connections, you can minimize packet loss and latency concerns, improving productivity and keeping frustration at bay.

The technology also increases IT efficiency at your other business location(s) as it enables automation and offers dependable links for IoT projects.

 5. Minimizing Costs:

Deploying a cloud-based application has added to the data running over WAN, thereby increasing operating expenses.

Luckily, SD-WAN can minimize the expenses by using low-cost local Internet access, facilitating direct cloud access, and minimizing the amount of traffic over the core WAN.

 6. Supporting Edge Computing:

Another benefit is that SD-WAN can help make the maximum of Edge Computing.

Edge Computing is defined as a distributed computing technology that brings computation and data storage to the location where it is required, to enhance response times and conserve bandwidth usage.

SD-WAN can process critical data at the edge of the branch office network—and less important data can be delivered to the cloud and processed there. This leads to many benefits, including minimized latency, lower bandwidth usage, and better reliability.

These are some benefits by opting for SD-WAN technology. Want to ask something else? Or you have other benefits that haven’t been featured here?

Drop what comes to your mind in the comment box given below!

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AI and Cybersecurity


The introduction of artificial intelligence (AI) into a wide range of situations is known to make such a situation better in terms of efficiency and experience. AI has gained recognition in many industries such as education, customer service, banking, and automation to mention a few. Recently, AI is beginning to gain popularity in cybersecurity and it is also playing a substantial role in the fight against cybercrime.

AI is valuable in cybersecurity because it advances how security experts investigate, study, and understand cybercrime. It boosts the cybersecurity know-hows that businesses use to fight hackers and help keep organizations and customers safe. Artificial Intelligence (AI) improves the efficiency of cybersecurity in the following ways:

  1. Timeliness: An AI-based cybersecurity is not founded on human monitoring alone. Threats can be detected almost immediately. In fact, there is no break once artificial intelligence is involved. Your network or system is always available 24/7 because it recognizes no holiday or non-work hours.

Also, this constant availability results in an immediate response to threats. That is, the security of your business is always around the clock.

 

  1. Speed: AI helps to filter the massive amount of data for an outlier in a short time. When this task is done by humans, it could take days or even a month before this can be achieved. In addition, manually creating a network security policy and understanding an organization’s network topography will most likely be cumbersome. For instance, a data center of average size may have up to 500 applications and could require 4,500 different security rules!

 

  1. Improves password protection and authentication: Passwords are a vital part of security. Nonetheless, we can be careless with our passwords or even use a single password for several accounts without changing it for an extended period of time. This approach makes your system or network easy to hack. Fortunately, AI enhances authentication and gets rid of imperfections thereby making your system more reliable.

 

  1. Vulnerability Management: Using AI as opposed to the traditional procedure in identifying risks is taking the innovativeness of your business a notch higher. This eliminates having to allow hackers to exploit the vulnerabilities of your network before you counteract them. AI helps you develop a proactive vulnerability management scheme.

Due to the increase in the complexity of networks, the ability to handle it is now beyond that of human beings alone. Therefore, using artificial intelligence will be a huge advantage to your business’s security and protection.

It is important to note that AI in cybersecurity can either be the savior or enemy of your business. It depends on whose arsenal the weapon (AI) belongs, either yours or your enemy’s (hacker). Therefore, be smart and take advantage of AI in securing your cyberspace instead of allowing the opposite site (hacker) to use it against you. CYNEXLINK is your go-to.

Cynexlink is a technology company that provides services that include Cybersecurity Solutions, Software-Defined WAN (SD-WAN), Managed IT Services, Cloud Vendor Selection & Consulting, Cynexlink VoIP, and CCPA.

For more information, visit our website at www.cynexlink.com NOW!!!

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Data Breaching in 2020

How to Prevent Data Breaching in 2020?


What is a Data Breach?

Data breaching is a process by which an organization experiences a cyber-attack, which lets hackers gain illegitimate or unauthorized access to an organization’s system or network to steal sensitive and personal information, or data of users or customers.

When a company experiences a breach in their cybersecurity, making reparations to the damage usually costs the company not only a large amount financially, but also in terms of reputation. Therefore, companies must make sure they prevent such a breach or unauthorized access from taking place by almost any means necessary.

Below are some suggested tips  to prevent data breaching in  2020:

  • Updated Security Software

Software developers constantly improve their products (software) thereby making upgraded versions available. An organization must have the latest version of its cybersecurity software to avoid weak spots for hackers to exploit.

  • Risk Assessments

Frequent vulnerability checks on your system should be done. This will help your business to review and improve security procedures and policies.

  • Regular employee security training and awareness

Hackers don’t abstractly just get access to a network or a system, there is usually an entry point. Employees are often the crack-in-the-wall that hackers use in breaching a company’s security.

Employees are the likeliest to click on suspicious links, download “anti-viruses”. In other words, an honest mistake by an employee is all any hacker needs in breaching your network. Therefore, to ensure the utmost safeguarding of important data, employees need to attend regular classes on cybersecurity until following safe practices becomes a norm.

  • Employees tiered access

Access to data should be categorized based on employee’s job specifications and requirements. For example, an employee in charge of mail should not have access to information concerning the financial record of the customers. That way, critical information cannot be viewed by just any employee and the honest mistake of clicking a harmful link is minimal.

  • Compliance of Third-party vendors

No business is a stand-alone, businesses often get involved with third-party vendors. Necessary background checks should be carried out before getting involved with such vendors. This will give you the opportunity of knowing your vendors better. Also, limit the kind of documents your vendors have access to and ensure they know and comply with security policies.

  • Have a business continuity plan

There is a common saying, “hope for the best, but expect the worst”. Having this in mind causes you to prepare your business for unattractive occurrences. In a case where your business experiences a data breach, this plan helps you bounce back and handle the attack fairly.

Integrating these steps to prevent data breaches can be demanding. So, take the burden off and let Cynexlink help you.

Cynexlink is a technology company that provides services that include Cybersecurity Solutions, Software-Defined WAN (SD-WAN), Managed IT Services, Cloud Vendor Selection & Consulting, Cynexlink VoIP, and CCPA.

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Network Penetration Testing

Network Penetration Testing & Ethical Hacking


What is Network Penetration Testing?

Network Penetration Testing is also known as “Ethical Hacking”. It can be referred to as professional hacking where hackers recognize and exploit or probe into the weaknesses of your network or system.

Network Penetration Testing or Pen Tests are done in the form of a deliberate cyber-attack against your computer system or network by professionals. These tests give way to recommendations for fixing the possible loopholes hackers can exploit in breaching the security of the business.

It is done for safety purposes because it can be used to check the security policies employed by a business, how aware and compliant the internal customers (employer and employees) are applying these policies, and how quickly and efficiently an organization can recognize and respond to security occurrences.

WHY A PROFESSIONAL IS IMPORTANT FOR ETHICAL HACKING:

An ethical hacker is precisely trained and equipped with the necessary skill to perform pen tests and other system assessments. Inadequate or no network penetration testing could be harmful to your business and business operations.

Importance of Network Penetration Testing: 

  • DATA BREACH PREVENTION

A proper network penetration test keeps your business on top and helps avoid possible security risks in your network. This test is a form of business continuity strategy which gets your business ready in case of unpleasant eventualities.

  • APPLICATION SECURITY

In a bid to better serve your customers, there is a need to improve your business applications.  Performing security assessments before launching these new applications is important. This is because the applications are to handle sensitive data and these assessments will help prevent the malfunctioning of the app or the exposure of sensitive data to risks. The security of these apps makes investing in network penetration testing worthwhile.

  • SECURITY CONTROL TESTING

Network security professionals are well trained in firewalls, encryption procedures, data-loss prevention, layered security processes and so on. Their knowledge results in the effectiveness of the network security controls.

  • GAP ANALYSIS MAINTENANCE

Network Penetration Testing is meant to be a continuous process and it identifies how well your security model is functioning. It also helps your business to create awareness of any gaps in the security model that may occur at any time.

  • COMPLIANCE

A network security professional guarantees that your system complies with the set standards and requirements for your business’s security model. It also eliminates the possibility of facing sanctions that can be in the form of paying some penalties attached to non-compliance.

CYNEXLINK is your best bet for professional penetration testing. Cynexlink is a technology company that provides services that include Cybersecurity Solutions, Software-Defined WAN (SD-WAN), Managed IT Services, Cloud Vendor Selection & Consulting, Cynexlink VoIP, and CCPA.

For more information, visit our website at www.cynexlink.com NOW!!!

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DARK WEB EMAIL MONITORING


Dark web email monitoring is just gaining popularity in the cyber world. Talk about second chances, the dark web is one of such rare opportunities. When Hackers steal personal information like credit card numbers, bank account passwords, postal/IP addresses or even social security numbers. The process doesn’t end at stealing, hackers make transactions with the stolen data.

WHAT DOES DARK WEB EMAIL MONITORING DO?

Whenever there is a hack, the dark web creates awareness for its users. Dark Web Monitoring helps scan the web for any leaked personal data so the owner of such data can act promptly to protect their accounts.

Below are a few steps you can take as an additional line of defense against further threats:

  1. SCAN YOUR COMPUTER

There is a possibility that your passwords and keystrokes were monitored and exposed as a result of viruses on your computer. Therefore, scanning your computer for possible malware when your email is found on the dark web is a smart and safe thing to do.

  1. BOOST YOUR PASSWORD STRENGTH

Emails found on the dark web is often as a result of a successful phishing scam. To strengthen your password to make it more secure, ensure:

  • Your password is lengthy (up to 15 characters)
  • Use a mixture of uppercase and lowercase letters
  • Add numbers and symbols
  • Avoid using your name or common words
  1. CREATE AN EMAIL FOR JUNK MAIL

Most often than not, many recent sites require intending users to sign-up using their email addresses. Therefore, it is important to have a side email for unnecessary profiles. This is because when any of these insignificant sites are hacked, your primary email will not be found on the dark web. This means there will be less damage to your vital information due to less exposure.

  1. VERIFY YOUR ACCOUNTS

On receiving a breach alert through dark web email monitoring, check your bank accounts to ensure no money is missing and that no strange activity has occurred. Carry out these checks regularly because occasionally hackers don’t defraud your account(s) immediately after gaining illegitimate access. They tend to wait a while and allow you to lose guard.

  1. USE TWO-STEP AUTHENTICATION

Don’t limit access to your account through the conventional email and password. Rather, add another vital step to the process by having to verify your login attempt typically through a text message containing a randomly generated code. This helps add further security and reduces exposure to hackers.

In conclusion, Cynexlink makes sure every corner of your security program is covered. For more information, visit our website at www.cynexlink.com NOW!!!

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Software-Defined Wide Area Networking (SD-WAN)


Looking back a few decades, a thought pops up in your head as to how far we have come with these innovations in technology. Previously, users sitting at a branch had to connect with a server at a data center, many miles away. That need is long gone now as the world requires a more advanced user application. Businesses are looking for multi-clouds as opposed to traditional Wide Area Networking (WAN). WANs have been deemed ineffective for this era as their design does not match the requirement of today’s users’. So, the question is, what can replace WAN? Software-Defined Wide Area Networking (SD-WAN) is your answer!

The SD-WAN is a new type of WAN that caters to the current needs of businesses. Traditional WANs were unable to keep up to the demand of users. Their programming does not allow them to control excessive traffic on their networks. This traffic would result in management issues, data vulnerability, and it reduces the performance of applications. The newer version, SD-WAN, promises significantly more, including the likes of higher efficiency, security, and performance. It allows users to make internet-based connections easily and securely. Let’s look at how Cynexlink SD-WAN has met the needs of these users.

 

Low Costs

When talking about the cost of this new system, there is a huge difference in price when compared to the older systems. It requires 25% less cost than what was needed previously. It’s not only cost-effective, but its utilization has also become better.

 

Simplicity

The introduction of SD-WANs has simplified the management of network systems. It is a centralized, cloud-based system, which allows users to gauge through a vast number of endpoints. It also allows for the zero-touch deployment, which enables devices to be configured automatically. This lets business managers implement network-wide configurations with just a click.

 

The introduction of new internet-based services has been made easier. Now, the addition of services can be implemented immediately, whereas previously, it took months to get anything done!

 

Quality and Performance

SD-WAN is designed in a manner that categorizes its traffic based on its function and type. This helps in avoiding any bandwidth bottlenecks, which would clog the system. The traffic flow is efficient, allowing the software to update replications across the network in less time.

 

In addition, it also has in-built firewalls that protect your data! These firewalls can easily be set up, and they ensure to keep your data safe. Web content filtering, application awareness, intrusion detection, and prevention capabilities are some of the features these firewalls possess.

 

Connectivity

When looking at this particular architecture, the possibility of disruption in your connections is improbable. It allows the transfer of your active applications from any failing connection to an available one. It helps in stabilizing your network connections and reduces any chances of poor-quality actions. The forward error correction technology of SD-WAN enhances and ensures the quality of VoIP calls.

 

Long-term Growth

It enables you to set up your network for long-term growth. Additionally, it helps businesses in customizing network features according to their needs and prepares to shift the network to a cloud-based business.

SD-WAN Value Proposition
SD-WAN increases performance and reliability
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