As we look to the new year, cybersecurity is an ever-present issue of vital importance. In this article, we will focus on securing your business e-mail, as no business is removed from the threat to this critical communication tool.
Email is still the first entrance for hackers, and while you may have taken steps to secure your account, advancements in malware demand consistent upgrades. Below we share everything you need to know to keep your email under lock and key in the year ahead.
Shift to a More Secure Email Provider
Move to an email provider that uses real-time protection against advanced threats. Subscribers to Microsoft 365 and Outlook relish this feature. If you already use Microsoft 365 applications and Outlook, you may worry about other vulnerabilities. The reality is that most companies are not investing enough time and leveraging advanced security settings to better protect their business email(s). Employing features like password protection, maximum password age (30-90 days) and complexity for email access, while adding a list of trusted devices to your companies Microsoft account(s) are of the utmost importance to ensure your email has the most security measures in place.
Protect your Computer System
Computer viruses like Spidey Bot, Ransomware and Astaroth Trojan are well known viruses today in the corporate world. There are ways to prevent these malicious viruses from infecting your hardware. Here are a few in-office and remote steps to protect your email from these attacks.
Install a premium antivirus and firewall
Perform hardware and software updates consistently
Choose a safe email provider and tool (i.e., Microsoft 365)
Establish Multi-Factor Authentication
Back up your data to the cloud
Incorporate Multi-Factor Authentication
Multi-Factor Authentication protects company hardware once it falls into the wrong hands. When your organization’s devices are protected by Multi-Factor Authentication or Two-Factor Authentication, your company is exposed to less risk if a laptop is lost, stolen, or handled without permission. Required passwords, or other unique features like facial scans and fingerprint authorization ensures that your email and the information it contains cannot be accessed.
The best thing you can do for your organization to protect your email system from advanced threats is to have an IT support firm assess your current security measures. Contact Toos Technical Solutions today to schedule an assessment and discuss how we can support your company in solving technical issues.
Computer security in business settings is not only an element of cybersecurity, but also directly involved with hardware vulnerabilities and installed software. Cybercriminals often target employee desktops, mobile devices, and laptops injecting malicious to access an entire organizational network. Toos Technical Solutions is here to share how you can protect your employee hardware from threats to your IT systems.
Antivirus & Firewall
You have antivirus software installed on your personal or company computer, right? You should, but while the free antivirus version may save money it does not protect against the most current security patches. To protect your data, a better alternative is to invest in a premium antivirus subscription that offers protection against malware and spyware. Also, make sure that each of your personal and company computers have the system firewalls turned on.
Never think about postponing software and operating system updates ever again. Put together a policy that produces mandatory updates for all desktops, tablets, smartphones, and laptops, whether it be on-site or remotely. Updates are not simply performance-based, as they will deliver security patches to freshly exposed vulnerabilities. Even waiting many hours to perform an update will open your company up to risks, therefore it is important to check the box on automatic updates for all operational systems and software. The IT team can then verify.
Set-Up A Multi-Factor Authentication System
Any company laptop, tablet, or smartphone that sits unattended in a workplace, home or vehicle is prone to cyber threats. With a Multi-Factor Authentication System, the hardware protection will block malicious access. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) needs more than one recognized factor for authentication, and it should be provided before a user is granted access to any device. This factor usually includes a password with another unique individual feature included such as a fingerprint or facial scan. A common example is Apple Face ID, a Multi-Factor Authentication system that many workers, staff members, and companies are familiar with. Through the Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) set-up, all company computers that even if hardware is stolen or lost, no one outside the organization will be able to access company information.
Use Better Productivity Software
Hackers commonly gain access to computers through software-as-a-service (SaaS) products, something a business can use to boost productivity. Therefore, it is important that businesses choose secure SaaS and ensure the IT team has verified that all security features are in use.
Let us review Microsoft Office 365 as an example. This, subscription-based application offers higher protection than the Microsoft Office package your organization could be relying upon. Not only does Microsoft Office 365 provide an additional productivity solution, but it also carries high class security features that defend the company computers’ entire network.
Despite following the above solutions, there is a chance your computer could still be compromised. Thus, it is equally important to ensure that all your computer data is backed up. Toos Technical Solutions offers safe, secure, and innovative solutions to protect your computer and data while improving efficiency. At Toos, we work with you to meet current requirements and future needs.
Check out our blog on Cloud Computing and feel free to contact us anytime to speak with one of our IT experts or to discuss your options.
Cloud computing sounds like technical jargon, but chances are if you have ever logged onto your organization’s server while out of the office you have used a form of cloud computing. The Cloud is a type of computing where storage, networks, servers and apps are accessed through the internet. Cloud gives users access to their servers and data at any time as long they have an internet connection.
What is Cloud Computing?
Cloud computing is the access to computer resources through the internet. This includes virtual machines, storage, development tools, servers, networking and much more. The virtualization of IT infrastructures is an everyday reality. Reports have illustrated that 92% of companies use the cloud in one way or another.
Cloud computing has changed the way individuals and companies’ access and store their data. Prior to cloud services, organizations hosted their own hardware and software resources through an on-premise infrastructure.
Why move to the cloud?
When comparing traditional on-premise strategy, cloud computing offers a plethora of benefits to companies.
Accessibility & Collaboration: Cloud users can work from anywhere at any time. Documents can be accessed and shared through a secure internet connection.
Collaboration: Cloud allows for constant syncing of documents. Users can share the most up to date documents with colleagues anywhere in the world in real time.
Efficiency: With cloud you don’t need to worry about space regulations, computer hardware, or software updates. Cloud uses automatic software updates and upgrades. There’s no need for on-site servers and software packages with cloud, giving your team more time to focus on business.
Reduced Costs: Rather than purchasing hardware and managing a data center, with cloud you can utilize a pay as you go subscription only paying for the services you require.
Flexibility: Given the state of remote work right now, the mobility that cloud computing provides may be the biggest advantage. Employees can work from any location if they have an internet connection.
Data Security: Storing data on the cloud is a safer option than storing it on physical servers because users must have granted access through a secure internet connection. With cloud there is no need to store private files on local and remote hardware which leaves it vulnerable to theft and data breaches. Additionally, partnering with a cloud service provider like Microsoft or Amazon, that spend billions of dollars annually on their security, compliance certifications, advance network architecture is more secure than a on-premise traditional data-centers.
The benefits of a cloud strategy for your IT infrastructure is endless; new benefits are being documented all the time it seems. However, the way each company or individual consumes the cloud varies.
Cloud Computing Service Models
There is a growing list of cloud service models, we only focus the three most common models; software-as-a-service, platform-as-a-service and infrastructure-as-a-service.
Software as a Service (SaaS): is the use of application software accessed through a web browser, desktop client or API. The application is hosted in the cloud by a third-party and licensed to a company or individual for a monthly or annual fee. The entire IT infrastructure is managed by a third-party.
Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS): The cloud service company provides the entire platform (and even tools development tools) to companies to build, run and manage applications. Companies can focus on their business objective without the complexity and inflexibility of setup and management of an on-premise platform.
Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS): IaaS is the provisioning and use of fundamental computing resources accessed over the internet. IaaS gives companies the ability to access resources, scale or reduce on a pay-as-you go basis. No upfront capital expenditure on hardware.
Public vs Private
A public model might fit your needs best if you don’t need to own and maintain data centers onsite. You may be familiar with third party providers such as Microsoft and Amazon, they provide the infrastructure for many organizations to access software hosted on their servers. If you’re concerned about confidentiality you may prefer the private model which allows you to secure the data as the servers are owned and maintained by your organization but can still be accessed over the internet or your organization’s network. Additionally, there’s the hybrid model, that would work well for your organization if you want to eliminate relying on a single server and not all your data needs to be privately secured. However, in order to use a hybrid model your organization would need to set up communication between the private cloud, public cloud, and the on-site servers. Hybrid cloud options thus work well for organization’s beginning to migrate their data to the cloud.
Is Cloud Services Secure?
How can you keep your work secure even when your data is hosted remotely? Luckily, given that a third party is hosting your data their whole business lies in being able to keep your data safe and accessible. Before choosing a service provider , you should ensure they are focused on compliance requirements and data encryption. While migrating to cloud , you can create new policies and regulations including cloud security. An IT specialist could help you ensure the cloud is compliant with the security framework that is commonly used within your industry and country. Additionally, a specialist could work with you to create security protocols specific to your cloud system.
If you’re familiar with working from home, you may log on to your work computer using specific software that connects you to your organization’s shared drive allowing you to access and share documents with your team securely. This is a prime example of one of the benefits of cloud computing.
As the pandemic continues, businesses are evolving rapidly in order to respond to these uncertain times. Cloud computing gives businesses the opportunity to expand the way they do business from adjusting supply chains to remote team collaboration.