Security is complex and has a lot of moving parts. You need to have a commercial grade firewall. A managed security solution:
And if that weren’t enough, small businesses would then need to hire staff that are in demand, all demanding salaries well into the six-figure range just to be able to understand this output and what you have to do in order to keep your network secure.
You also need vulnerability testing to look for weaknesses on a regular basis and penetration testing to make sure hackers can’t get in at all. You must update and patch all systems to stay ahead of the ever-changing security scene, provide training to stay current, and give coverage for 24/7 management.
The core of our security solution is the monitoring provided by our security team. The SOC is where our team watch for all vulnerabilities in your systems, events on your network, and unusual behavior in your users.
If your system isn’t patched, or it’s accepting connections that it really has no purpose to, we notice that and address it for you.
Is there a service in your network that is reporting it’s doing things that aren’t normal for your regular business operations? We address that for you too.
Do you have someone in your network sending client information, credit card or bank information, or contract details via email, shared drives like Dropbox, or posting to a website? We can catch that and take action as well.
If you already have an internet connection that you have no issues with, then we can work with what you have. Our solution will work just fine with almost anything in the way of an Internet connection. As long as you have a fast enough connection to create a stable connection to our SOC*, you’re good to go. If you have a residential grade connection that is causing you issues, we can convert your internet service to a fully managed commercial grade connection if you prefer.
*If you can stream Netflix on your connection, you have a fast enough connection for the monitoring service that will keep your network safe.
If you have a regular regular (Cable or DSL) connection in your office that is just like you have at home, you can rest assured that the thing they told you was your firewall, really isn’t. A home grade ISP router basically is as secure as using a brown paper bag as your front door. It is made to be cheap, easy to support, and let everything in your house get to the Internet as quickly as possible. It was not made as a secure device, and it will do nothing to keep your network safe.
Consider how small the world is from a technology standpoint. The worst neighborhood in the world is likely less than a full second from your home or business internet connection. Think of the worst place on the planet that you can. Search a business or government in that area. (duckduckgo or Google if you prefer.) Open up the website for them. As fast as you can access that location, that location can access you. While your home or office may be in a good neighborhood, everything online truly is not. With that mindset, having a good lock on your front door is just an obvious first step.
Commercial firewalls can watch traffic to see bad behaviour. They can create secure connections to places you trust. They can isolate different devices in your network from talking to each other. they are full blown, powerful computers with the processing power to monitor your traffic, and take actions to help secure you. Also, as a very important feature, they log things so that you can look for patterns and trends that are the best way to find when someone is on your network that shouldn’t be.
Intrusion Detection Systems and Intrusion Prevention Systems listen for bad traffic, and block bad players from your network at the perimeter. Consider this the equivalent of the security guard in the entrance to your office building. While it isn’t the only risk you stand, it’s a big one that shouldn’t be ignored. IDS/IPS is a critical step in raising the bar for security, and increasing the difficulty to access your network.
Another major advantage of a commercial grade firewall is the ability to have a dedicate VPN for your offices and staff. Working remote doesn’t require all of your information to be exposed to the internet. Email is not secure. Cloud services are often compromised, and shouldn’t be the way you move confidential data if you can avoid it. VPNs let you work securely, remotely, and be more productive, with less overhead, and better security.
It’s normal for most small businesses to just have a flat LAN. Every port on every switch is just like all the others. This means anyone that connects anything, anywhere on the network has complete access to everything. One of the first steps that we complete is segregating your network. In fact more often than not we see no isolation at all when we first visit client. Guests in your business that are using your “free WiFi” are able to directly connect to your Merchant PIN pad for debit/credit transactions, connect to your PCs running your accounting software, or use your internet for hiding their hacking attempts towards other companies.
Wi-Fi is great at making life more convenient. But it’s not great and keeping anything confidential.
If you allow guests to your business to use Wi-Fi, you need to consider two systems for business and guest use. Guest Wi-Fi should be limited so it can’t use all your bandwidth. It shouldn’t be able to see anything in the business. (Not even other guests.) And it should block all traffic that isn’t in line with benign internet use of legitimate customers.
Wi-Fi for business use should be even more restricted. The device(s) that are used on Wi-Fi should be connected via VPN rather than trusting the network is secure. All access to anything other than true “business need” destinations should be blocked to minimize the risk profile.
The adage of You Can’t Manage What You Can’t Measure is more true in I.T. than it is in business. Network Monitoring is the core of knowing what is in your network, what it’s doing, and importantly if it’s working properly. Detection and correction of issues before they become major problems is a central component of making your network both secure and productive.
Patterns and trends that allow you to find issues and react quickly usually don’t come from a single place. Being able to combine all of the data from all systems and sources into a single unified repository is the only way to stay on top of securing your systems.
No matter what steps you take to protect your computers, backups are absolutely critical. From user error, or hardware failure, to malicious acts; Backups are your line in the sand for not losing your data. Let us help you find the right backup solution to keep your data safe.
If you keep client data, then you need to be concerned with DLP. Under PIPEDA, as of November of 2018, fines of up to $100,000 per incident make the risk of losing customers Personally Identifiable Information too costly to gamble with. As the number of attacks on small businesses increase, DLP is becoming more and more critical to the protection of the longevity of your business.
Your users and the machines they are on often will become the weak point if you don’t have policies and controls in place. Taking a starting point of securing your systems from accidental or even intentional mistakes, we help you secure your network so that the exposed target that other tools need to protect is more manageable up front.
Criminals are constantly developing new ways to attack networks, take advantage of employee trust, and steal data. Smaller businesses may think they’re not a target, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, small businesses with 100 employees or fewer now face the same risk of attack as a 20,000-employee enterprise.
No matter their size, businesses need reliable endpoint security that can stop modern attacks. And since most companies are subject to some form of compliance and privacy regulations, protection for endpoints is 100% necessary to help businesses avoid hefty fines and damage to their reputation due to a security breach.
Security awareness training is an education process that teaches employees about cyber-security, IT best practices, and even regulatory compliance. A comprehensive security awareness program should train employees about a variety of IT, security, and other business-related topics. These may include how to avoid phishing and other types of social engineering cyber-attacks, spot potential malware behaviors, report possible security threats, follow company IT policies and best practices, and adhere to any applicable data privacy and compliance regulations.