With recent events, Work from home is the most plausible option and companies are encouraging people to work remotely. Though the working teams see it more beneficial and it’s easy to connect from anywhere to everywhere, it comes along with certain risk factors. For instance, if a person connects from a coffee shop or public transportation facilities such as Metros, Railway Stations or airports, there are security risks by using such unsecured Wi-Fi. Cyber attackers use such rogue networks to hack into a network, the possibilities of implanting malwares in a network are endless. They hack into your system and get control of all highly sensitive data just in a couple of steps. With breaches and security threats increasing day by day, it is a necessity to safeguard our digital assets. Below are some security tips that will help you avoid such risks to protect your device.

Setup VPN

It is highly recommended to use a virtual private network (VPN) to have a secure connection while connecting to your network. Setting up a VPN encrypts the connection while sending/ receiving the data over the internet, protecting from hackers on public Wi-Fi.

Enable firewalls in your system 

It is important to enable firewalls in your system while working in an unprotected public Wi-Fi. Generally, it is not required when you use a VPN which provides a secure encrypted connection but if you are not using a VPN, you have to enable your system’s firewall settings to protect your device from unwanted threats.

Turn Off “Sharing” in settings

When connecting to an unsecured public Wi-Fi network, you are unlikely to share files in a less secure network. So, ensure you turn off file sharing option in your system.

Use SSL certifications

HTTPS websites are more secure than the HTTP website which is gained through installing SSL certificates on the website. SSL certificates provide a secure connection between the client and server-side communication. It encrypts all the information provided by the user like login credentials, banking information, etc. So, always use the website which has a green padlock in its address bar indicating the installation of an SSL certificate.

Install Antivirus Software

It is mandatory to have your system protected with anti-malware software. With regular scanning, you can keep your system away from unwanted malicious threats.

Most people are unaware of the risks that arise using public Wi-Fi. Start practicing these steps to stay safe and protected!

Here we are, yet another year that is coming up!  Exciting technologies, new market trends, new plans, new business, greater revenues would be the plans. The year 2020 brings in more push approach, and the focus will be greater than ever before on ‘data security‘ – it is because of the newer technologies like AI, ML maturing at a faster pace than expected, and promising regulations getting tighter, and stricter than ever.

Maintaining a good healthy IT security posture is the goal of every organization. However budget constraints, lack of proper IT security plans leaves gaps, that needs much attention. Ransomware, data breaches occur more than often, and is exponentially on the rise. Businesses are in the midst of a digital transformation pathway – the way business is conducted is different, and is fast paced, with heavy data content workloads. CTO’s and decision makers to stay ahead of this competitive environment, have to scale up their IT security setup to meet up challenges.

The coming of IOT, AI and ML are big game changers – this sentiment is reflected across industries, and domains. All these technologies are maturing, and getting deployed rapidly. Aligning with such needs, IT security vendors are also tailoring solutions to meet these demands, as security challenges will co-exist as technology evolves. Security tools like SIEM, SOAR, concept of managed SOC is ready to meet such challenges.  The favorable aspects for security vendors is IOT, AI, ML is yet to be accepted in a widespread manner , thus any gaps in security solutions can be quickly filled up.

Security budgets

 Earlier organizations did not pay much attention to security budgets, balance sheets reflected more on IT spending on infrastructure, outsourcing, and staffing costs. This is now changing, more budgets are allocated to IT security, the spending is estimated to be over 10% plus, in most organizations, driven by the scaling up with newer technologies.

Shortage of Skills

Gaps in cyber skills versus IT security needs, is worrisome. Growing security needs requires skilled professionals, and security tools – supervision is necessary to oversee security holes if any. Talent pool for cyber security is less, and demands for such skilled people is rising and the gap is wide. Universities,realizing this, are offering specialized courses and even some companies are offering tailored courses to meet such demands.

Legislations

HIPAA, GDPR, SOX and now CCPA, and many more states have begun to roll out legislations concerning IT security. Organizations need to comply with these regulations to stay compliant. This is no longer a necessity it is now absolute norm, to stay in business. Organizations will need to plan their IT security overall keeping this in mind.

IAM – absolute need

Identity access and management (IAM) is an absolute requirement for organizations.
Data is lifeline of business and it is the most important asset. To secure data, IAM solutions is the best choice, with IAM offers SSO, MFA tools that secures most applications, and also can enable organizations maintain a healthy IT security posture.

Managed SOC

Companies may begin to embrace managed SOC, the rationale behind can be seen along with the fact that someone manages your security requirements and needs, so that you can concentrate on business, added managed SOC will bring in more seasoned professionals to handle your IT security. However, this model can have flips to it, it is critical to select and work with the right service provider.

Multi-cloud

Cloud is no longer the future – it is all over the place. Organizations largely have moved to the cloud model, its reach out has extended to a multi cloud model – where in multiple cloud providers get onboard to serve.

Summing up – it is important to think, and devise a best IT security plan before jumping in. Data will be a top driver, and securing it will always be a challenge. Organizations who plan wisely will be the revenue maker, and will be a leader in the race.

Cybersecurity experts are perfecting the shield providing the best approach to prevent hackers from stealing the data. Yet, hackers make their offense stronger involving more tricks into play. Another NEW attack ‘Snatch Ransomware’ has made quite a buzz in the IT space making its way to the list of nightmarish cyberthreats.

What exactly is a Snatch Ransomware?

Snatch basically runs on its own in a Windows system, giving elevated access. It runs sneakily with the name of ‘SuperBackupMan’ and encrypts the user’s files. Snatch not only goes undetected by the antivirus, it also steals the data from the system. On reboot, the system runs in a safe mode and the snatch takes over the system using the windows component.

Researches from Sophos who found the snatch ransomware believes snatch has been active since the summer of 2018. This trick to use Windows in safe mode is quite dangerous and the exploit of this windows vulnerability is another growing threat which other cyber attackers may use it to their advantage.

What Next?

With snatch sneaking its way into the organization. Having a better security is a must. Here, are some of the ways to protect your organization from cyberthreats

  • Ensure your remote access tools like VNC and TeamViewer are highly protected. As snatch team are looking for ways to hack into a system and are always in the lookout for vulnerabilities.
  • Having VPN gives the network an anonymity when accessing the Internet. So, only the users with VPN credentials must access the network protecting your data from criminals who wants to break into the network.
  • Implementing IAM in your organization is a must as it provides the right access to the right people at the right time. It offers enhanced security with Multifactor authentication approach and prevents cyberattacks and protects the user’s data.
  • No matter how good your security is, if its not updated regularly, it’s of no use as the bugs aren’t fixed. So, ensure your systems are regularly updated.

Finally, even after doing all the precautionary measure, there is still one more piece of advice that every organization must follow. Its quite simple, educate everyone from your organization about the growing threats and security measures because no matter how many security experts you hire, “security is everyone’s responsibility”.

Yes, it is important and critical to safeguard your IT security. Business assets reside in the form of data and are rendered vulnerable. Data breaches are happening just like that and organizations are rendered helpless.

In the recent UniCredit, the bank and financial services organization revealed that the data breach had close to 3 million records that were exposed, revealing the names, telephone numbers, email addresses, and cities where clients were registered.

Such breaches are said to have an impact over social media, rather than any real serious banking transaction, however, it is paramount that a breach had occurred. It is interesting to note, that the UniCredit had made substantial investments in upgrading their IT security systems, yet the breach took place.

In Risk-Based Security research, 2019 Midyear QuickView Data Breach Report, states the first six months of 2019, had seen more than 3,800 publicly disclosed breaches exposing 4.1 billion compromised records.

Legacy of breaches 

It is important to read along, that similar breaches occurred in July 2017 reason was data theft due to third party provider accessing data without authorization, and in the latter part of 2016 as well.

Then why breaches?

Shockingly, such breaches are not happening to poor budgets or lack of security awareness. It can be identified as:

  • Lack of proper security training
  • Un-authorized access to systems /services
  • Exposure of sensitive data
  • Insider actions – both malicious and accidental

In such contexts, one cannot blame the solution provider, it is the organization that must ensure such breaches do not occur, bring more security process during selecting a vendor and decide on what type and at what level information can be accessed. Greater hours of security training programs must be pushed for.

Better security brings better business efficiency and leads to a healthy IT security posture. With greater regulatory compliance framework on the rise, enterprises must view IAM more seemingly, than ever before. IAM brings with its tools like SSO, MFA to access many applications, in a more secure manner.

The first line of secure access to applications comes with SSO tools, and most organizations do have it. The next line of defence is multi-factor authentication (MFA), which supports an OTP backed, with password authentication.

In what seems a very contrary view to what MFA has to offer, US federal agency FBI believes that MFA is still not that secure, it is vulnerable to security breaches. FBI stated that circumventing MFA through social engineering, and technical attacks are still hackable by cyber attackers. A classic misuse case was the MFA bypass that took place in a US banking institution. Further, the FBI is of the view that MFA solutions differ from each vendor, and the use of such defences does not mitigate the need for user training. The note from the FBI is just a precaution, rather defeat the efficiency of MFA.

It is critical, that in the security space, a greater vigil is always better. With the greater dependency on MFA as the secondary form of verification, it is more likely that it might be exposed to greater attacks in the coming days. Perhaps, in this view, the FBI strongly recommends that enterprises use biometrics or behavioural information to mitigate these attacks.

When it comes to Privilege Access Management. The first thing that pops up in my mind is a vault. Simply put, Privilege access management is the gateway to the most valuable digital assets in an organization. But before diving into what is Privilege access management and why it is important? Let’s checkout what exactly are privilege accounts.

 Privilege Accounts

Privilege accounts is basically an account which has more access when compared with ordinary access. They have administrative options and can control, access or monitor the systems which are connected. That’s why it is often referred to as “Keys to the Kingdom”. Such accounts are crucial and when hacked can cause great loss to the organization.

With IT security being ignored and breaches happening everywhere, the importance of Identity and access management is well known. Still, organizations must secure the privilege accounts with multi layered security. That’s where PAM comes in, a perfect solution to secure the critical accounts.

What is Privilege access Management (PAM)?

Privilege access management is a solution to monitor and secure the privilege accounts which has elevated permissions in an organization. Privilege accounts exists in every organization irrespective of the industry. Due to its administrative access to the crucial digital assets, cyber criminals tend to target this type of accounts to gain the elevated permissions.

In PAM solution, the privileged account users or super admins do not access the server or database directly. Instead they go through a vault which is monitored by a security team who goes through every access, authentication and authorization happening. This vault or repository is securely encrypted and maintains the password, key, etc. Once the super admin is authorized, they are given access to the different endpoints

 Why is it important to use PAM?

  •  Implementing PAM and regularizing the policies helps in adding an additional security layer to the privileged accounts. This make the organization’s network more secure and prevents any exposure of sensitive data. It helps in protecting the privileged accounts from cyber criminals.
  •  Using PAM enhances the productivity to a higher margin where the super admins in an organization can easily connect to systems and applications much faster than a standard user.
  • Ensure regular audit and compliance for privileged accounts where user session activities can be audited using PAM tools.

Experts from the cyberspace constantly build different strategies and policies to secure the data. In this constantly evolving cybersecurity world, PAM is an ideal solution to tackle cyber threats both inside and outside the organization.

Irrespective of the nature of business cyber-attack is quite common and a nightmare to any organization. The breach of sensitive personal data of an organization is making headlines quite often. Recently, Architectural and Construction industry is facing a major setback in the cyberspace. Yes! Hackers are lurking everywhere to steal valuable digital assets. Are you aware of how vulnerable your network actually is?

The Architectural and Construction industry comprises a vast amount of data on properties, finance, budget, designs and much more. Even the slightest exposure of data can cause irreversible difficulty in projects and operations.

DATA HACKED FROM ARCHITECTURAL & CONSTRUCTION FIRMS

  • Business & financial documents
    • Project budgets
  • Government briefings, reports, & records
  • Human resources documents
  • Internal communications
  • Legal documents
  • Network infrastructure documents
  • Product designs, budget, blueprints, instructions, & training materials

 

In order to protect personal data, the state of California has passed California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in June 28th 2018. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2020 to protect the data of an individual in a business. These policies are out there to secure the personal information of an identity.

“Symantec reported that one out of every 382 emails exchanged in the construction industry in 2018 had malicious content”

Everyone from Architects ,Professional Engineers and construction companies worry about cybercrime but it’s a known fact that everyone is responsible for security too. The importance of securing the digital assets is well known only when there is a crisis. For instance, recently a global shipping firm, Pitney Bowes was hit by ransomware. It could have been prevented by implementing IAM.

What is IAM?

IAM is providing security to data from internal breech by ensuring right access to the right data for the right individual at the right or scheduled time.

In this data driven world, security threats are increasing day by day. Identity and access management has become a vital part in an organization. IAM is basically providing the right access to the right user at the right time using certain metrics. Incorporating biometrics, machine learning, artificial intelligence (AI), risk-based authentication, and  identity-as-a-service (IDaaS), IAM is a powerful tool to avoid data breaches.

Benefits of IAM

  • Enhances the security in an organization
  • Offers the right access to the right people on time using standard policies
  • Decrease in help desk calls for IT support on password resets
  • Improves Service delivery by automating IAM in the organization
  • Prevents internal and external breaches

How we can help  – Our IT security engineers can help you identify potential risks and develop effective strategies to mitigate such risks, so that you can focus on your business.  To know more about our solutions and service offerings, visit our website to help you more, its https://sennovate.com.

Pitney Bowes was hit by ransomware on October 14th which made the customers unable to use their services like print labels, mailing, track parcels and manage expenses. This US-based mailing company was infected by the malware called Ransomware which locked the system using encryption and played havoc with the customer services.

Currently, Pitney Bowes is working with their technical team and third-party consultants to restore the infected systems. The importance of security in an organization is talked about only when there is an attack. Before the cyber attack, there might have been no regular compliance, no proper security team, and definitely no IAM implementation. Though security in an organization is everyone’s responsibility, an organization must set the right regulations implemented to avoid cyberattacks. Below are some of the tips to prevent these disruptive ransomware attacks:

  • Patching and Regular updates on all systems and software
  • Update Antivirus software frequently and regularly scan your networks
  • Regularly backup the files in the organization
  • Do not click unfamiliar links and emails

Moving towards a secure world is quite an obvious approach when cyberattacks are growing rapidly. Securing digital assets in an organization is a vital part of any business. So, there must be a team of Security operation center who implements IAM in their organization which provides the right access to the right user at the right time offering complete timely network analysis. With ransomware hitting major businesses and hackers lurking at every corner for the right time to attack, it is recommended that an organization understands the importance of Identity and access management and implement it to secure their network. Its better safe than sorry!