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The top 7 “unmonitored” network configurations to watch

Even if you have so-called Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) agents running on your network, that doesn’t guarantee that you’re getting visibility into all of the most important security and configuration items that need to be regularly checked.

I remember a case of a Texas man who illegally accessed his former employer’s computer database and deleting some important files. He had been an employee of a services provider to the domestic natural gas and oil exploration and production industry. Read the rest of this entry »

Have you been given a clean IT Bill of Health?

What do I mean by that? I mean, that nobody has access to files, folders, and data who shouldn’t. Devices that you’ve decommissioned can no longer access your network. No new devices are currently connected to the network that you don’t know about. Everyone is using strong passwords to protect network access. Permissions for active users are in alignment with your security policies. You don’t have ports open to the internet for potential external penetration. Etc., etc., etc. You get the point. Read the rest of this entry »

Are you the exception when it comes to IT network hygiene

Let’s face it: The old adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” is an easy mantra for busy executives and employees who have to-do lists longer than their arms. We’ve evolved into a society largely of digital firefighters, running from one emergency to the next while trying to get more work done with fewer resources.

When it comes to managing an IT network, even the most diligent companies with competent internal and/or external technical resources struggle to keep up. If it’s not responding to a never-ending call for help from the end-users, it’s swapping out old hardware, ramping up new systems and, well, just keeping everything running and available. Read the rest of this entry »

Unauthorized employee network access

There are few things in life that get me more angry than people blatantly abusing IT access privileges that have been granted them by their employers. I think this presses my buttons even more than an unauthorized intrusion by a hacker or cybercriminal.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Both scenarios can add up to a nightmare, and often times the financial impact of an external attack on a company is far worse than an “inside job.” But in the latter case, I think it’s the violation of trust that gets me most upset. Read the rest of this entry »

How do you know what you don’t know about your IT assets?

Most business executives who come to me for help don’t have a good understanding of how their networks are configured, or who inside – and external to — the organization has access to what information and programs. In fact, while most of these executives are well aware of the possibility of EXTERNAL threats from viruses, malware, phishing scams and the like, they don’t even think twice about the very real access their employees have, and the damage that they could potentially inflict on the company – whether planned or through simple ignorance. Read the rest of this entry »