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How To Prevent Phishing Attacks

by Administrator 23. August 2017 21:42

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Security Checklist For Businesses

by Administrator 31. July 2017 20:03

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What Are Backdoors And How To Remove Them

by Administrator 28. July 2017 19:57

Backdoors can be defined as malicious programs that provide a convenient way for the hackers to sneak into your corporate network. If they gain access, they may exploit the security vulnerabilities in the computer system to steal personal information, modify or delete files and install additional software. A backdoor is probably one of the most harmful types of malware as it allows the hacker to get complete control of the infected computer.

Once a computer system is infected, a backdoor may perform the following activities:

  • Delete, rename, edit or copy any file stored on the computer
  • Make changes in the Windows registry and execute or terminate certain applications
  • Record keystrokes, gather confidential data, capture screenshots and send it to a remote host
  • Reduce internet speed and performance or consume extended bandwidth
  • Initiate attacks against other systems connected to the same network

How Does Backdoor Infect Computer Systems?
The typical characteristic of a backdoor is that it installs itself sneakily without being detected by the user. It operates in the background and stealthily transmits all your information to a remote server.

Here are some of the ways in which backdoors spread themselves to the computers systems:

  • A user may inadvertently install backdoor through email attachments or file sharing programs. Hackers send the malware in the name of a legitimate file attachment to trick users to download or execute it.
  • A backdoor may also get installed when a system is already infected with a virus, spyware or Trojan.
  • Unknown remote access features in certain applications may lead to installation of backdoor on your computer. The hacker connects to the computer that has the software installed to gain complete control over its functionality.
  • Unpatched software vulnerabilities are another common means through which backdoors spread themselves.

Tips To Remove Backdoor

  • Though it is difficult to detect the presence of a backdoor on a computer systems, here are the steps that should be taken if you find one.
  • Download and install the latest anti-virus software
  • Update the operating system to its latest version
  • Disconnect the computer system from the internet network
  • Run a complete scan of the computer and remove all the infected files
  • Once the process is complete, restart your computer before accessing the internet or opening any file

For more information on backdoor and other malicious software, you can contact Centex Technologies. We can be reached at (972) 375 – 9654.

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Things To Know Before Choosing Storage For Virtual Environments

by Administrator 12. July 2017 10:56

Storage virtualization has become a necessity in the IT industry, mainly because of the need to store an extensive amount of data in a safe and secure environment. It not only saves on the costs of physical hardware, but also allows for a better utilization of the available resources and streamlines business operations.

Given below are some factors that need to be considered while choosing storage for virtual environments:

Opt For A Simple Solution

The virtual storage solution you choose should offer simplicity in its usage. All the complex and low-level tasks such as performance testing, updates, data placement etc. should be automated. This will beneficial for the IT professionals as they will be able to focus on other important configuration tasks.

Ease Of Management

Reliability and consistency in performance are other important elements that should be looked for. The virtual machines should support multi-tenancy functionality, so that all the users can individually manage data stored on their systems. Manageability of a virtualized storage should be considered in regard to data flow at three different levels - virtual machine (VM), virtual machine to physical storage and the server to virtual machine.

Performance

All virtual storage solutions are designed to handle a specific amount of data. Therefore, you must analyze your storage requirements, both at present as well in the future, to determine the most suitable type of service. Make sure that all the resources in the virtual environment are utilized to their maximum efficiency. Also, the performance of any application should not be hampered due to lack of storage space.

Customer Support And Service

When you implement storage virtualization in your organization, you need to procure services from multiple vendors so that the entire system can work efficiently. Therefore, constant support is essential to address any issues and ensure non-stop functioning. Without this, you may have to experience extended downtime which can be critical for your company’s reputation.

When choosing a vendor, you should evaluate the level of customer service it provides. Gain complete knowledge of how the virtual environment will fit into and enhance the productivity of your business in the long run.

We, at Centex Technologies, provide comprehensive information security solutions to the business firms in Dallas. TX. For more information, feel free to call us at (972) 375 – 9654.

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Blogging Tips For Beginners

by Administrator 29. June 2017 09:35

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Steps To Better Vulnerability Management

by Administrator 27. June 2017 14:57

Maintaining the information security of an organization has become a necessity in the present times. Though identifying and patching potential vulnerabilities is important, it may not always be possible to completely shield your network against hacking attacks. Therefore, it is essential to formulate a strategic vulnerability management program to strengthen your IT security system. It will not only help to detect the risks, but also identify the most viable way to understand and mitigate them.

Given below are some of the steps that you need to take for better vulnerability management:

Identify Your IT Assets

Though this may sound quite obvious, it is really important to identify and keep a track of your IT assets in order to adequately protect them against attacks. Cloud computing technologies and adoption of mobile devices have expanded the boundaries of an organizations’ IT infrastructure. To deal with this problem effectively, IT professionals must create an inventory of all the computer systems and applications that have access to the corporate network. You can even use some cloud based tools to streamline the process and automatically record all the internal as well as external IT assets.

Understand The Risk

Vulnerabilities can exist in any layer of the network. Hence, an in-depth scanning is critical to understand what all systems are at risk and the level of risk they pose for the company, in the event of a data breach. Conduct an external penetration test as well as internal application scan to identify all the potential threats to the network. Prioritize the vulnerabilities according to their severity so that you can focus on rectifying the more critical risks first. Set exceptions on the level of risk that you can accept and manage at a later point of time.

Identify Which Controls Are Already In Place

Take a note of the security measures that have already been deployed in your organization. These may include firewall, intrusion detection and prevention system (IDPS), data encryption, virtual private network (VPN), data loss prevention etc. Identify the efficiency of these systems to protect your confidential data and other IT resources. This will also give you an idea of the threats that are not being managed and require the use of more sophisticated security software.

Centex Technologies is a leading IT security company serving business firms in Dallas, TX. For more information, you can call us at (972) 375 – 9654.

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Tips For Implementing BYOD In Your Organization

by Administrator 12. June 2017 15:43

Over the years, the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy has become an accepted norm in organizations across the globe. Employees are continuously using their smartphones to access company’s network, download important files and share sensitive data for collaborative projects. However, a number or organizations are still looking for ways to implement a strong BYOD policy, which increases employee productivity and eliminates any potential security risks.

Tips for implementing BYOD in your organization:

Specify Which Devices Are Permitted

Firstly, you need to set clear policies regarding the devices that are allowed to be used for work. Depending upon the network settings and security measures, you should decide the devices that will be supported. For instance, most organizations permit the use of only iOS devices due to their advanced security software and privacy-enhancing features.

Establish Strict Security Policies

Before allowing the employees to bring their own device, make sure you mandate a strong password policy. Ask the employees to lock their device using complex log in credentials and change it at frequent intervals. This will prevent unauthorized access to the official accounts and sensitive information, even if the device is lost or stolen. You can also require two-factor authentication for employees who access company’s financial details or client information on their mobile device.

Install Mobile Security Software

You cannot have complete control over the type of information an employee accesses through his smartphone. Malicious file downloads and spam websites can install malware on the device which may jeopardize the security of files stored in it. Therefore, you should make it mandatory for them to install an anti-virus software and run frequent scans to detect as well as remove any potentially dangerous application. You can even choose a security software that offers additional features, such as device tracking and remote wipe.

Decide The Apps That Will Be Allowed

This applies to all the devices that connect to the corporate network, be it your organization’s computer system or the employee’s personal smartphone. You should restrict the use of social networking applications, games, remote desktop access, VPN and other software that may pose a threat to the company. You can also block downloading of applications from third party sources.

For more tips on successfully implementing BYOD policy in your organization, feel free to contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 – 9654.

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How To Make Sure Your Network Is Ransomware-Proof

by Administrator 29. May 2017 22:53

Ransomware is undoubtedly one of the most harmful types of virus attacks for any corporate network. When a computer system is infected with the malware, it locks down all the files stored on the local hard disc, demanding a certain amount of ransom from the victim to get access to the data. Over the last few years, ransomware attacks have increased and have become a lot more targeted. Therefore, you need to stay proactive and protect your network from getting infected with this malware.

Here are some steps you need to take to ensure that your network is ransomware proof:

Perform Regular Backups

Though this is the most basic defense against ransomware, performing regular backups goes a long way in minimizing the consequences you have to face in the event of an attack. Create and implement a policy that requires the employees to backup their files at frequent intervals. When you have a copy of the files, your business activities would not be hampered due to a ransomware attack.

Disable Remote Access

In most cases, ransomware exploits the vulnerabilities in the computer systems or mobile devices used to access your network remotely. Though remote access allows employees to work from anywhere, it also increases the chances of a hacker being able to infiltrate the corporate network. Therefore, you should disable remote access, particularly on the systems where it is absolutely not required.

Deploy A Firewall

Install a reliable firewall software to prevent ransomware from getting access to your network. When you have set the rules on what type of content can or cannot be accessed on a computer system, you can significantly limit your network’s attack surface. It will also scan all the file downloads in real time and block the ones that potentially contain a malicious code.

Setup correct file and folder level permissions

Just like a firewall software protects you from external attacks, setting up file and folder permissions is important to secure your network internally. Make sure that the employees have access to only those files which they need to perform their tasks. For instance, marketing employees should not be able to view, modify or share the HR department folder. This will not only provide protection from ransomware, but lead to a more secure network environment on the whole.

For more information on ransomware and how you can safeguard your corporate network, feel free to contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 – 9654.

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Hashtag Benefits

by Administrator 26. May 2017 10:19

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Network Monitoring Best Practices

by Administrator 9. May 2017 05:30

Continuous network monitoring is one of the core elements of maintaining a secure and efficient IT infrastructure within an organization. As network systems have evolved over the past few years, it is essential to manage the configuration of all the network devices, servers and services to ensure timely detection as well as removal of the potential threats.

Given below are some of the tips for implementing a successful network monitoring strategy:

Note the baseline network performance

In order to identify any problems in the network infrastructure, it is important that you have an idea about its normal performance. Documenting network functionality over a period of time can help you to set accurate thresholds and receive alerts when the network is not performing up to the mark. Base-lining also facilitates proactive troubleshooting and prevention of downtime before it causes problems to the users.

Inventory management

You need to have an in-depth understanding of the IP devices, routers, switches and servers that make up your network. Make a detailed inventory of all the items you need to manage and add them in your network monitoring software. Categorize all devices on the basis of usage, vendor, location, data center and other parameters. Create a map and form connections between the system so that it represents your network architecture. This will give you a visual idea about how the inventory should be maintained.  

Monitor and report at every level

Every element in diverse corporate network operates on a separate layer to contribute to its overall functionality. In the event of a system failure, it is critical to identify the layer at which the data connection has been interrupted. Therefore, your network monitoring system should focus on observing and reporting problems at all layers. This will make it easy for you to detect if the issue has been caused due to malfunctioning of hardware, router, bandwidth or any other component.

Prepare for network expansion

With the expansion of your organization, your network also needs to evolve and incorporate new technological upgrades. This, in turn, will also increase the number of devices, network bandwidth and storage space required. Therefore, make sure you choose a scalable monitoring system that allows you to include more devices and interfaces as and when they are added to the network.

We, at Centex Technologies, provide comprehensive network security solutions to the business firms in Dallas, TX. For more information, you can call us at (972) 375 – 9654.

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