IT-Support-Miami-Cybersecurity-Blog

Cyber Attacks Happen: Build Resilient Systems

You can’t stop all attacks or build the perfect defense system. The higher-level objective is resilience.

Every week, billions of cyber-events batter government networks. Millions of these attacks hit at network speed, and thousands succeed, as reported by the Homeland Security Department’s US Computer Emergency Readiness Team. The US Navy alone was attacked more than 1 billion times in 2016. Although security analysts strain to counter these breaches, mostly with manual processes, it’s likely terabytes of data are stolen.

Given this dynamic landscape, you might think federal CIOs are getting more resources to defend against mounting cyberthreats. They’re not. Money and security expertise are in short supply, meaning agencies need to innovate. First and foremost, they can no longer take a piecemeal approach to information security. A holistic strategy that incorporates real-time risk management and continuous monitoring is the only way to go.

To help companies build these more-resilient systems, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, in collaboration with the Defense and Homeland Security departments and private sector intelligence communities, has come up with security controls that focus on mobile and cloud computing, application security, the insider threat, supply chain security, and advanced persistent threats.

So it comes as no surprise that more than half of the respondents to Information eek’s 2014 Federal Government IT Priorities Survey say cybersecurity/security is the top priority in their agencies. Seventy percent rate security as “extremely important,” with another 16% viewing cyber-security/security as “very important.”

Federal managers want to know “how to stop the bleeding,” says Ronald Ross, project leader of NIST’s FISMA Implementation Project and Joint Task Force Transformation Initiative. You can’t stop all attacks or build the perfect defense system. The higher-level objective is resilience. “What does it mean to have an adequate degree of resilience in a modern information system that supports critical missions?” Ross asks, in a question that’s neither rhetorical nor unique to federal agencies. State and local governments as well as private sector companies are struggling, too — anyone with valuable information and using very complex high-end technology is subject to the same types of threats.

Resiliency means “becoming healthy after something bad happens,” says Bret Hartman, VP and CTO of Cisco’s security business group. “That is a good way to think of security because it’s impossible to stay healthy all the time.” Agencies should consider the attack continuum and which technologies they need in place before an attack occurs, during an attack, and after the attack to do systems remediation. This last area is still maturing and is where the biggest challenge lies today, Hartman says.

Time for better cyber “hygiene”
To address resiliency in federal government, NIST and its partner agencies are focusing on two tracks: improving “cyber hygiene,” and designing IT system architectures that can bounce back from damage and contain attacks. A good way to view cyber-security, says Ross, is to have a way to address areas “above the water line,” such as known patching and maintenance, and those below the water line — problems you can’t see that could cause trouble and inflict serious damage without warning.

Cyber hygiene focuses on tasks that security administrators deal with daily, such as promptly updating operating systems and applications with the latest security patches or making sure all operating systems and network devices are configured properly to close down attack vectors that could be exploited. IT must also assemble and maintain a complete inventory of everything on the agency’s network and the information it has to protect.

With NIST 800-53 R4, the government is starting to address security below the water level, too. Specifically, we’re talking about contingency-planning types of controls, which allow agencies to define alternate processing capabilities, storage sites, and communications plans in case of a natural disaster, like a hurricane, or a cyber-attack. “We have contingency plans in place and run those exercises as frequently as we need to, so when the event happens, we can move smoothly into that backup scenario,” Ross says.

Cloud Services for CPA Firms

How Cloud Services for CPA Firms Can Leverage Your Business

Investing in reliable technologies can definitely help your CPA firm grow. In fact, more and more accountants and business owners turn to technology to lower the workload and properly manage their tasks. In recent years, the rise of Quickbooks has given CPA firms the incentive to move their business online and the advantage of building stronger customer relationships. When cloud services for CPA firms have offered CPA firms the chance to move their businesses online, they have reported that:

  • Business has become more efficient
  • Their employees has become mobile and, as a result, more flexible
  • The firms have become more secure

With Nerds Support’s cloud solutions and Quickbooks hosting, you would have all the Cloud Services for CPA firms and the best IT Support Miami team in your hands. It kind of makes you wonder: what other benefits can your CPA firm receive from using cloud solutions?

You get to create a stellar IT infrastructure without worrying about high costs

In fact, if your CPA firm hires the best IT Services Miami, you can get some of the best results on the market fast and easy. Using the cloud allows you to avoid costs like hardware acquisition and maintenance. Not only that, but the power consumption costs are reduced as well. The cloud service provider deals with all of those overhead costs; you just get the desired service!

Transitioning to a paperless office

Another great benefit is that your CPA firm will get to transition to a paperless office experience. You don’t need to print documents all the time, instead documents can easily be transferred and modified online, all thanks to cloud services.

Improved productivity

By using cloud services, you can access your information and files from any location. This helps boost your productivity since you can work from anywhere in the world. You just need to have a constant internet connection, that’s the only requirement. Plus, your data is kept online at any time, and you are the only person to remove it when needed.

Increased security

Security is a major issue for a CPA firm. You get to handle sensitive data, and that’s why you have to rely on high quality IT services that will boost your local security. Doing that can be easy if you use cloud solutions. These are reliable, professional and they help you secure your documents off-site as well. So, there will always be a backup of your data off-site, and no one will be able to access it (nor will they know where it is).

There’s no need to create an entire IT services department

Yes, instead of spending a lot of money on such a department, you just opt for proper business IT support and other services from the cloud solutions provider. The costs are a lot lower, and you still receive the same expertise and professionalism. Plus, this is a complete package that helps your company increase its productivity as a whole.

The best way to plan your company’s growth

Another advantage for CPA firms comes from the scalability offered by cloud services. If you need to expand your business, then you will not have a problem getting a better technology infrastructure. And the best part is that you know all the costs upfront, there are no hidden fees.

If you want to move your company to the cloud, Nerds Support is here to help. Thanks to our Cloud Services, you will have no problem moving your business to the cloud and optimizing your infrastructure. From here to taking your business to the next level and getting the very best IT services or business IT support it will be one single step!

To find out more information, please fill out a contact form here or call 305-551-2009.

IT Support Miami

Three Essential Tools For IT Support Miami

In order for a company to grow, it needs to try and expand as much as it can. But to do that, you would need to have the right IT Support Miami services. You also need the reliable software that will help your business become more productive. In fact, each business should consider harnessing the power of software right away. These technologies are fast, efficient and can bring in tremendous benefits!

What tools are essential for your company?

Usually, it all comes down to the industry you are working in. Some industries rely a lot on cloud tools, others just use a single software tool, but there are companies that harness the power of both paid and free tools to complete their tasks. However, things are different when it comes to support solutions. Doing IT support does come with its own set of challenges, but if you need this type of service, there are a few important services that you have to take into consideration. These include VMware, Citrix and office 365.

Nerds Support can help you gain access to all of these amazing software tools in no time. Not only that, but we provide you with a great, creative way to integrate these tools into your business process. This way, you can solve any type of support problem in no time, and the results can be outstanding.

VMware Support

VMware is a very important business specialized in modernizing data centers, offering modern and high-quality apps that help bring in front unique new ways to boost the security of your business.

What makes VMware great is the fact that it can help you protect your company’s files very fast. When the Wi-Fi vulnerabilities, more commonly known as the KRack attacks, were bought to light, VMware were one of the few software that was completely unaffected by these attacks. The primary benefit of this company, in particular, is its unique virtualization system that allows you to easily prevent any potential problems that may appear within your business and the results can be more than impressive in the end because of that.

Plus, with help from the best IT Support Miami services, you can eliminate any security issues that may appear. Another great thing is that VMware offers distinct solutions for any industry, such as manufacturing, retail, communications, government, finances, manufacturing and so on. That makes it extremely efficient and one of the best ways to integrate file security and business security ideas within your business!

The solutions offered by IT Support Miami are great for desktop and app virtualization.  You can also get enterprise mobility management tools, internet of things features, and network functions virtualization. It also includes cloud management platforms and many other great features as well.

Why would you use this type of support tool? Not only does it help you adequately protect your business, but the return on investment is very good. Nothing will be able to access your crucial business data, and the fact that you can keep your company files secure is amazing in its own right.

Citrix support

If you want to use some of the best IT Support Miami tools, then you want to opt for Citrix for sure. Citrix is a tool that allows clients the ability to work from any place, any desired device and at any given time. All the tasks and information that you have on your current screen is automatically transferred to the new device that you plan on using. There’s no need for transfers or anything like that which would normally require manual input.

With Citrix, everything is done manually. However, the results are among some of the best that you can find out there. It’s one of the best ways you can further expand your productivity without a lot of hassle. And yes, the best part about using these tools is that you can feel free to modify their benefits as you want. It’s outstanding, easy to take into consideration and the value on its own is astonishing for sure.

Used properly, the Citrix support tools allow us to identify any issues and then we can solve them for you by taking control over your device and rectifying the mistake. The process is fast, easy and it delivers exactly what you may need in no time.

Citrix manages to make your life easier, thanks to the dedicated application virtualization and software tools. They also do this while handling all the necessary programming and processing in the background. It really is one of the best and most powerful security tools on the market. You will surely appreciate its unique and distinct approach that you can find at this time.

Office 365 Miami

Office 365 Miami is one of the best tools that can help you manage your business, but at the same time, it can also provide you with a great way to complete a wide array of day to day tasks within your company. It is an interesting and distinct approach. At the same time, it does bring in front a delightful new way to upgrade your business.

Office 365 Miami is a very good solution for any type of business. This is because it can be used online, it has a minimal impact on consumer resources, and the results that you can get are second to none. Plus, you can easily obtain access to the latest features this way, including new Office products.

Why should you hire the best IT Support Miami services from Nerds Support?

Nerds Support can easily integrate all of these support software options within your business. We also created a unique way to boost your company’s approach, taking it to the next level. We offer managed services, cloud services, VoIP, email protection, hosted solutions, technology consulting and many other features. If you always wanted to improve the way you deal with IT issues, then using the best IT Support Miami solutions is by far the best idea you can have.

Don’t hesitate and get in touch with our team to access all of these great IT support solutions and many other great features. Work with us, and you will get access to incredible pricing, high-quality services, and incredible benefits, all added in a single package. Give this a shot, and you will not regret it! To set up a free consultation with Nerds Support, you can call 305-551-2009 or you can fill out a contact form here.

Data Security

What is the Wi-Fi hack and how does it affect Business IT Solutions?

On October 16, 2017, the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team sent out an alert regarding vulnerabilities of Wi-Fi Protected Access II. This is also known as WPA2. This news will impact all businesses on perhaps every scale. However, with the right education and precautions, your Business IT Solutions will remain intact. Our IT Support Miami experts will help you stay steps ahead of your competition. Below, you can find out everything you need to know about the attack.

What is WPA2?

WPA2 is a type of technology that provides network security to Wi-Fi networks. The software, WPA2, is a shorter name for Wi-Fi Protected Access II. All hardware has had this technology since 2006 and has become the standard for fighting data encryption. In it’s creation, WPA2 became a replacement of the original WPA technology. During it’s time, the technology had the most up-to-date encryption standards. Since then, the technology has received regular updates.

On October 16, the US-CERT issued and alert that says if you have a router with WPA2 security, your devices are hackable. This means your device is in trouble if you have Wi-Fi Protected access. In addition, hackers can see your personal information and do anything they want to it.  Marty Vanhoef, a Belgian security researcher exposed the vulnerability. He will be discussing KRack attacks more in depth later this year.

What is the attack?

The vulnerability in the WPA2 Wi-Fi protocol makes your computer prone to Key Reinstallation Attacks, or KRack for short. A KRack attack disables a Wi-Fi router’s security and makes your information prone to whoever is roaming through the same network areas as you are.

You can watch a video of the process below:

If you notice in the video, a potential hacker would only need a few tools to find important login information. Furthermore, if a business owner thinks their company information is not secure, this could be potentially dangerous for vital company information. So far, there have been no major cyberattacks regarding KRack. However, you should know that if an attacker were to gain access to your router, they could manipulate the data by adding a type of ransomware or malware to the computer. In a year full of cyberattacks, it is entirely possible that a hacker would benefit from this type of attack.

Is My Business Protected?

With this information finally in the open, the most common concern is having a safe business. If your company has any vital information, you must check if it’s on any affected software. If so, you company might be prone to cyber attacks. Therefore, it is important to know the affected software so you, as a business owner, can start figuring out how to secure your business quickly.

As of October 18, the US-CERT confirmed the following affected vendors:

  • Cisco
  • Google
  • Intel Corporation
  • Samsung Mobile
  • Toshiba Memory Corporation

As of October 18, the US-CERT confirmed the following unaffected vendors:

  • Arista Networks, Inc.
  • Check Point Software Technologies
  • Internet Systems Consortium
  • Internet Systems Consortium – DHCP
  • MikroTik
  • VMware

For the full list of affected vendors, you can click here.

Even if you work with unaffected vendors, you should still update your devices. This way, you can ensure that your company may be as secure as possible. As a result, any important business information that you have will remain secure. If anyone in your company keeps information on affected software, you need make sure your data is safe. By doing this, your company will be safe and you won’t have to shut down. 

How Can I Keep My Business IT Solutions Safe?

In the past, our data backup and recovery team has always advocated for the importance of securing your passwords, installing the proper firewalls or anti-viruses and, of course, conducting regular data backups. Updating your devices to the latest software is the best way to prevent KRack attacks. However, if you are a South Florida Business who wants more security for your business, you can trust Nerds Support’s Business IT Solutions to help business owners in Miami, Doral and Ft. Lauderdale to fight against hackers to keep their information safe. Our IT Support Miami service providers work round the clock to you can take comfort in knowing that your business information will be safe from cyberattacks and other disasters. All your information will be safe from malware with Nerds Support’s secure servers. MSPmentor, The Channel Company and, most recently, The South Florida Business Journal have recognized our Business IT Solutions.  Most of all, Nerds Support has helped many small to medium-sized businesses through difficult times and during a time where cyberattacks have been consistent, our Data Recovery Miami team is ready to keep your business safe too. To schedule a consultation, please call 305-551-2009 or fill out a contact form here.

Cybersecurity

Cyber Security Awareness Month: Five Takeaways from the Biggest Cyberattacks of 2017

In 2017, it is both fitting and ironic that October would mark the beginning of Cyber Security awareness month. This year has transformed into a year defined by fervent protest, natural disaster and cyberattacks. It seemed as though on a constant basis, households and business owners all alike would wake up to another cyberattack . Some of the most high profile cyberattacks could be listed below:

  • WannaCry
    • Wannacry is a strain of ransomware that was spread around the world, targeting hundreds of thousands of companies, most notably British Hospitals.
  • Equifax
    • Hackers had targeted over 140 million Americans in a security breach. The hackers were able to access credit card numbers, social security numbers, addresses and other personal information.
  • CCleaner
    • The PC cleaning tool discovered that hackers were able to infiltrate the program and transmit user data for criminal use.
  • Whole Foods
    • In some locations, cyber attackers stole credit card information.
  • Hurricane Scams
    • Fake charities were taking advantage of those who wanted to give to hurricane victims. Meanwhile, on affected territories, fake companies, or people posing as federal agents, were scamming hurricane victims.
  • Las Vegas Scams
    • Homeland security has issued an alert telling people to avoid giving money to unverified charities. There are also orders to not open any suspicious emails relating to the shooting.

Considering all that has been happening in the world lately, it’s really easy to forget about protecting your business data. But Ransomware as a service (RaaS) has transformed into a full business model. Meaning, it is more important than ever to have a disaster protection and data backup plan.

Looking forward to the rest of the year and beyond, here are some precautions that will make your business more secure for the next malware attack.

Secure Your Passwords

Our Miami IT Support experts are password security’s biggest advocates. As they may have mentioned time and time again, keeping your passwords in a safe location is a great way to prevent ransomware attacks. Be sure to keep your passwords on a secure file in your cloud and restrict access to anyone who wouldn’t need to know all of the passwords on the file.

Backup Your Data

Most experts agree that keeping a backup of your data is the best way to fighting against ransomware attacks. Backing up your data means that in the event of an emergency, the last saved copy of your data will always be handy, so you don’t lose vital company information. Experts say that it is important to back up your company’s data to an external device so that if your company becomes the victim of a ransomware attack, your data can simply be accessed from another device. Your data would be backed up on to one of our secure servers, if you were a client of Nerds Support, . That way if you have become a victim of a cyberattack, our Miami IT Support experts can take off the malware while you can resume your work on a different computer. Our 24/7 IT support experts backup client data every day. Our business IT support experts also check your files on a day-to-day basis to make sure any encryptions and malware doesn’t go into our secure servers. This ensures that your data backup and disaster recovery plan is implemented to its full potential.

Educate Your Employees

Teaching your employees on how to spot phishing emails is a great way to avoid ransomware attacks. As our Miami IT Support providers have said before, most ransomware attacks happen through email. When your employees know the difference between a company email and a malware email, you company is all the more secure. Below are some things that a business owner can tell employees not to do:

  • Do not open emails from addresses that you don’t recognize
  • Do not open emails with attachments that are labeled “.PDF.zip” or “.PDF.rar”
  • Do not give company (or personal) information to any unprotected websites

Current employees and supervisors should also beware of rouge employees. Rouge employees are employees that break company rules in serious ways. These offenses can range from hacking other employee accounts to taking hundreds of thousands of dollars from the company. Tell-tale signs of a rouge employee include:

  • Claims that the rouge employee can hack other co-workers
  • The rouge employee knowing information that they shouldn’t know
  • Suspicious online activity detected

A company should train all of its employees to know the signs of a possible cyberattack. A cyberattack can come from a rouge employee or a suspicious email. Therefore, if an employee that believes their company is receiving suspicious emails or a victim of suspicious activity, should report it immediately. Reporting it would mean the difference between keeping your company safe or becoming a part of a statistic.

Install the Proper Antivirus

While most antivirus software cannot fight against a malware they do not know about, antivirus software is still a great thing to have when fighting cyberattacks. Many experts say that another great tactic is to whitelist software. Whitelisting Software simply means that instead of banning different types of software, you list types of software that you want on your servers and your servers allow only the software that you approve of.

Hire a Team That is Will Prevent Cyberattacks

Nerds Support’s Data Backup and Disaster Recovery Plans are some of the best in Miami. Our IT Support providers agree that having a business protection plan is one of the best things a business owner can do for their company. With recognition by MSPmentor and other high profile companies, we don’t settle for anything less than the best technology to combat hackers, malware and any type of disaster that a business can encounter. When you hire our Miami IT Support experts, you get more than just an IT team. You get a dedicated group of individuals who become part of your company and who want to keep your company safe as much as you want to.

To find out more about Nerds Support’s Data Backup and Disaster Recovery solutions, call us today at 305-551-2009 or fill out a contact form here.