Part Two – IT Saves Lives: Three Steps to A Successful Disaster Recovery Drill

Do you have a data disaster recovery (DR) plan?

Have you conducted a disaster recovery drill to make sure your DR plan is effective?

Whether it is a natural disaster that shuts down all the power and your computer systems with it, or even a cybercrime such as ransomware that can lock you out of your hard drive and computer files, being prepared for the inevitable emergency or crisis is of paramount importance.

Disaster Recovery Plans and Drills Help Restore IT Systems in Times of Emergency: Part One

Do you have a data disaster recovery (DR) plan?

Have you conducted a disaster recovery drill to make sure your DR plan is effective?

Whether it’s sophisticated cybercrime, such as ransomware attempting to steal data, or natural disasters that halt emergency management systems – it’s more urgent than ever for municipalities to protect their IT infrastructures and data.

Student Mobile Usage Infographic

Student Mobile Usage Infographic

Cyber Risk Awareness Event Los Angeles

Legacy Telephony Technologies Get Swept Aside as VoIP Continues to Reap High Adoption Levels

 

Landlines for both businesses and consumers are becoming more and more a “thing of the past.” Industry and government reports show that VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) technology services are becoming the preferred standard for businesses.  Likewise, on the consumer side, trends show that for the first time ever, in US households, landlines are now in the minority and mobile phones are the primary form of communication.

Upshot — lots of news in the telephony arena – let’s take a look:

Ransomware Targets Government Sector and Ravages Industries Worldwide: Part 2

In a previous blog post entitled, Ransomware Targets Government Sector and Ravages Industries Worldwide, we discussed how enormous ransomware cyberattacks have rippled across the world targeting many industry sectors – including city governments.  These attacks include the recent Petya (aka GoldenEye), reported in late June 2017, as well as WannaCry May 2017.

While ransomware can target any industry, business or individual, Government Computer News reports that the government sector is seeing a larger proportion of ransomware attacks than ever before.   Therefore, municipal organizations must be on high alert and learn how to protect their networks against increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks.

However, protecting against malware, ransomware, and other cyberattacks, is a multi-tiered process that involves everyone at every level of an organization.  Here are some key tips to keep in mind:

Invest in the latest Hardware/Software:

  • Having the most updated operating systems (OS) such as Windows 10 is a good prevention measure as newer OS tend to have fewer security vulnerabilities. If you have a less current OS, experts warn to “apply the latest Microsoft security patches for this particular flaw.”
  • Ensure your anti-virus programs are conducting regular scans with the latest virus signature files.
  • Update or invest in new systems that offer more protection such as Next Generation Firewalls (NGFW).  NGFW have many advantages including deep-packet inspection, application-level inspection, intrusion prevention, and intelligence from outside the firewall.

 

Employee Training:

  • Ensure employees at all levels of an organization are trained and understand what malware is and how to spot rogue emails.  Employees need to know that they should never open attachments sent by an unknown sender.  CXO Today reports that “…cybercriminals often distribute fake email messages mimicking email notifications from an online store or a bank, luring a user to click on a malicious link and distribute malware.”  As such, organizations also need to update antispam settings.

 Have a Security Plan/Incident Response Team in Place:

  • Having a security or incident plan in place for when an attack occurs is a proactive strategy for dealing with a cyberattack. CXO Today writes, “Internal confusion within the teams often delays the response to the cyberattack causing potential loss to the organization. Therefore, it is essential to establish an incident response team, with clearly defined roles and responsibilities.”
  • A security plan also can include a concise inventory of assets, users, applications, and traffic flows.  Without knowing what you have, data can be stolen quickly and may not be detected for months.

 

City governments must ensure their data is properly protected. Ransomware and other cyber threats are very real, and happening with rapidly increasing frequency all over the globe. For more information on protecting your network, contact DiamondIT.

 

Ransomware Targets Government Sector and Ravages Industries Worldwide: Part One

In the past two months, enormous ransomware cyberattacks have rippled across the world targeting many industry sectors – including city governments.  These attacks include the recent Petya (aka GoldenEye), reported in late June 2017, as well as WannaCry May 2017.

The fact is ransomware has become the cybercrime “du jour” and according to NBC News, is now a billion dollar industry.

5 Ways To Make Cloud Easier to Use

Clouds
Change is scary, especially when it pertains to your business. You’ve made the important decision to implement a cloud-based technology solution, but now things seem complicated. How will all the files and emails be accessed? How much down time is expected? What if current applications don’t work properly?

The cloud, when implemented properly, makes everyone’s life easier. But if you rush through the process, or skip any of the 5 vital steps listed below, it can make your work environment cumbersome, and reduce the impact of your exciting investment.

Here are 5 ways to simplify your cloud usability:

How C-Suite Executives Misinterpret the Need for More Cybersecurity Budget

Recent studies on cyber attacks in the U.S. outline staggering consequences.  For instance,  Datacenter Dynamics recently reported that cyber incidents in 2016 cost 500,000 jobs and over a $100 billion in financial loss to American companies.

But despite what might seem like an intuitive strategy, “fear” of an attack may not incite C-suite executives to invest more in cybersecurity. The problem is that it is “…very difficult to know the probability of any given attack succeeding — or how big the potential losses might be. Even the known costs, such as penalties for data breaches in highly regulated industries …are a small piece of the ROI calculation,” according to a recent article in the Harvard Business Review (HBR).

Try a Telco Audit First: Where to Start When Revamping a School Telecommunications Network

School districts must have a solid telecommunications network in place in order to protect, inform and enable communication across district campuses.

While many educators want to offer their students the best in technology, they must first lay the foundation for an effective digital teaching environment, and that starts with a reliable telecommunications or telco solution. However, the path to a good telco solution isn’t always exceedingly clear.

This article will outline how a Telco Audit can identify the funding and the fit for the right telecommunications network for school districts.