Monthly Archives

June 2018

What is the Cloud and is it Safe?

By | Blog

A question you might be thinking, but apprehensive to ask. Let’s face it, the term “cloud” is used so frequently it’s difficult to understand what it really is.

I will share information and helpful resources I come across which I hope will demystifies the cloud. So lets start with the basics: What is the Cloud?

The cloud is not a physical thing, it is a network of servers, and each server has a different function. Imagine putting all your files, documents and other information in a cloud in the sky. Wherever you go, you can see and access this cloud. You can store more files, use/edit documents, or delete stored info from anywhere as long as you have a computer, laptop, mobile phone or any other internet-enabled gadget. This is how the cloud works. Storage, hosting of files (such as music, photos, applications, videos, etc.), and other services are outsourced to web-based cloud hosting service providers.

So there you have it, the cloud demystified. Your files are placed on servers that are “hosted” by other companies all linked together by the Internet and labeled the cloud. A good example is think of Dropbox, a common file  storage and sharing service that I use to store digital pictures. I had the privilege of spending a week in Scotland golfing and I took a million pictures on my cell phone. I only keep a few of my favorite pics on my phone and “uploaded” the rest to my Dropbox account. Now my pictures are securely stored in the cloud. But are they secure? How do I know that someone isn’t going to be able to access my pictures and laugh at me in a bunker?

The short answer is yes, it’s probably more secure than conventional data. Why? Well visit our blogs frequently as we will share fact and fictions about the cloud and the security of it.

Next Up: Cloud Security – Phishing

Cloud Security – Phishing

By | Blog

Cloud security is comprised of two different areas, each of equal importance. First is the security of your cloud provider (the company who provides the service that stores your information in the cloud) and second is your own security practices.

It is wise to have hardened security practices for your business, regardless of where your data resides. A lot of the issues around security are no longer technology issues, they are human issues. Jasmine W. Gordon, contributor to Tektonika, shares the following in her security post:

“Snapchat. Home Depot. The City of Calgary. What do these three entities (and countless other organizations) have in common? Data security breaches from human error, unfortunately. Each one of them faced expensive incidents as the result of simple employee mistakes.”

Don’t think for a minute “I am too small to be attacked”, because it happens to individuals and companies regardless of size, location(s) or revenue. One way to protect your company from human error is understanding and preventing phishing.

Phishing, pronounced “fishing”, is the fraudulent practice of sending emails purporting to be from reputable companies in order to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers. An example of this is I receive emails from my bank letting me know my account password needs to be reset, providing a link to login and reset it. The email looks like it comes from my bank, however, the link they are directing me to is not my bank. Odds are if I click the link I will be directed to a site that also will look like my bank’s web site allowing me to login. Simple enough, now someone has my bank login credentials.

Tips: Hover your mouse over a link and verify the actual URL is the same as what the email shows. Be cautious, the link may look the same only be off by a few letters. Another tip for businesses is to consider a phishing simulation. This is an effective way to test your employees’ security awareness and susceptibility to phishing tactics.

Next Up: Security questions you should ask your cloud provider.

Click here for our previous post, “What is the Cloud and is it Safe?”

 

Worldwide security spending will reach $96 billion in 2018 – Gartner

By | Resource Center

Across the globe, companies are moving quickly towards virtualized environments to work smarter and faster, seeking the latest technology to help streamline workloads, offset costs and reduce overhead and capital expenditures. Advancements in technologies to meet these demands create large gaps in an organization’s overall IT strategy and more importantly, their security strategy.

Although the tools and solutions to prevent cyberattacks exist, there is still a very prevalent “it won’t happen to us” type of mentality when it comes to cybersecurity spending decisions. The unfortunate reality is that cyber threats don’t discriminate against the size, type or location of a business, and the need for security measures has never been greater than it is today.

Questions businesses should be asking themselves when it comes to security include:

  1. Are our employees, including executives, trained on cyber security?
  2. What pieces of technology or what services do most of the heavy lifting for our company when it comes to security?
  3. When was the last time we were audited?
  4. When was the last time we competed a security assessment?
  5. Do we have an incident response plan?
  6. Do we have any specific concerns, such as changing IT security and compliance regulations?
  7. Do we have a disaster recovery (DR) or business continuity (BC) strategy in place?
  8. What is the state of our company’s current cybersecurity strategy and plan?
  9. What is our process for selecting the security solution or tool to address cybersecurity challenges?

Call Stonebridge Innovations, LLC. for a free no obligation consultation and discover how we can help you harden your security.