Tips To Manage Your Digital Footprint

19th Sep 2017

Your digital footprint includes all activities that you perform online. Right from posting comments/ photos/ videos on social media to online subscriptions and blog post updates, the internet tends to keep a record of everything that you do online.  In order to keep your data safe from cyber criminals as well as to prevent ID thefts, you must be cautious of what you post online.

Here are some tips can assist you in efficiently handling your digital footprint:

  • Utilize Privacy Settings:  Keep a check on privacy settings on all your social media accounts to manage who all can view your information. Facebook for instance, provides you an option to either display your posts to specific friends, to entire friend list or to public. It is strongly recommended to not make all your posts visible to everyone. Similarly check the privacy setting on other platforms too.
  • Don’t Overshare Information: In order to avoid any issue pertaining to your digital footprint at a later stage, it is best not to overshare information. This is applicable to all networking sites and tools because sharing everything with everyone may land you in trouble. Always keep your usernames, passwords, photographs, addresses and other sensitive information up to you only.
  • Manage Cookies: If you check your browser cookies, you will be surprised to note that multiple cookies have been sent by sites that you are not even aware of visiting. You can control this by blocking third-party cookies or enable plug-ins that help to prevent such cookies.
  • Understand That Online Content Is For Eternity: Anything that you post or upload online is likely to be there forever. Although it is out of the public view, your content can still be viewed through other means. Even deleting your account does not ensure all the information is wiped out as it can be found in archives and databases. Thus, always think before putting up anything online so that it does not impact you negatively later on.
  • Know What Others Are Posting About You Online: For this, adjust the settings on your social media profiles to get notifications when someone tags you in a post or picture. Whenever someone comments on your posts or shares content, you should instantly get to know about it. Enable the setting to first approve the posts before they are available for public viewing. Reviewing the posts ensures that no irrelevant or harmful content is posted with your name in it.

To maintain a positive digital footprint, it is important to be selective about who all are authorized to view your information. For more tips, contact Centex Technologies at (855) 375 – 9654.

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Warning Signs That Your Web Server Is Being Attacked

12th Sep 2017

Web server security should be a priority for any organization, particularly those who deal with sensitive customer data. With advanced hacking concepts such as URL interpretation, session hijacking, HTML injection, SQL injection etcetera, attackers can breach into the network and steal the stored files. In order to identify such attacks, the administrators must monitor their web servers and watch for the following warning signs:

  • General Indications: Most of the hackers try to breach the web servers by attacking the web applications to exploit any loopholes. In order to identify such attacks, you need to keep a check on signs such as multiple ‘404 page not found’ or ‘500 internal server error’ reports in the web server log.
  • Your Website Has Been Blacklisted: If your web server has been attacked and is sending out spam, there is a good chance that it has been blacklisted in search engines and email lists. The visitors on your website may get a message that the site cannot load. It will also become impossible for the end user to reset passwords as sending a reset password email will not be feasible from your end.
  • The Presence Of Web Shells: Web shells are files through which hackers can easily execute other files on the system. Mostly in the form of text, web shells can be easily masked among other files on the system. It is accompanied by extensions such as cmd.aspx or commandshell.php that gives out a code which can be used by the hacker to gain access to your website.
  • Unexplained Server Activity: Keep a regular check on the website so that you can immediately identify any suspicious activity. For instance, your email server process may show high volume of received emails whereas there may be no active visitors on your site. You could also see a Perl script running on your server even though you don’t use it. This is another sign of unauthorized access to your server.
  • Attack On Administrative Interfaces: Almost all the web applications have an administrative interface which can be targeted by hackers in order to reach your system. Watch out for telltale signs such as repeatedly failed login attempts, changes in the account or modifications in the application configuration. This can help you identify if your servers have been compromised.

We, at Centex Technologies, can provide businesses with effective network security solutions.  For more information, feel free to call us at (855) 375 – 9654.

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IoT Devices And DDoS Attacks: How To Reduce The Risk

30th Aug 2017

Iot devices have given users a smarter control on various applications. These devices can connect and communicate with users and can be operated from almost any location in the world provided you have access to Internet. As IoT devices can be managed from remote locations, it is important to maintain their security and also of the network to which they are connected. The recent DDoS attack (of Oct 2016), which took down prominent service providers across US, is believed to be made possible by use of large number of unsecured IoT devices such as cameras, DVRs etc.  So, security of IoT devices should be maintained, specifically to prevent such large scale DDoS attacks.

How to reduce the risk of DDoS attacks?

Use Of Unique Username And Password
A manufacturer should not rely on the end user for securing the device. A unique username and password needs to be set for the device along with a prompt to change these settings as soon as the device is powered on for the first time. The users also need to set strong passwords for the devices to avoid any kind of breach.

Protect Your Device And Servers
A number of monitoring functions should run on the devices to check for any kind of malicious activity from an unknown IP address. This will prevent the bot from accessing your internet and from repeatedly guessing the username and password. Make sure that you update your device and have its security analyzed regularly. Ensure that the server you are running, whether it’s your own or someone else, is secured and properly maintained. The data from the devices should be recognizable and difficult to spoof.

There are a few more things that can be done to prevent your devices from these attacks, which include:

  • Users should turn off remote access to the IoT devices and limit the devices that can access your network.
  • Get details of the network settings and its chain of communication with the devices from the connectivity supplier.
  • The manufacturers should make sure that the device has sufficient DDoS mitigation capabilities.
  • Users should learn how to scan their own networks for any security flaws. There are different tools which can
  • help them in finding loopholes before the attackers do.

By securing the network and devices, the users not only prevent themselves from the potential DDoS attacks, but can also improve their device’s performance.

For network security solutions, contact Centex Technologies at (855) 375 – 9654.

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What Is Threat Monitoring

28th August, 2017

Threat Monitoring is a technique used to improve security of a system or a facility and helps in identifying a potential security breach in the network. It aims at continuously monitoring a network to check if there are any security violations on the device. For example, whenever a person makes repeated failed login attempts, a warning signal is sent to the monitoring center that an intruder might be trying to guess the password.

How It Works?

Threat Monitoring involves day-to-day analysis and evaluation of security data to identify any cyber-attacks or breaches. It collects and correlates information from various processes to identify patterns in order to check if there are any threats to the system.

Benefits

Threat Monitoring helps to detect activities such as an outsider breaching into the network or if any internal process is compromised. While it can be difficult to detect such susceptibilities in overall system security, Threat Monitoring provides a proactive solution to identify such issues beforehand. The technique works by recognizing the anomalies of such illegal activities by correlating information about networks with factors like IP address and URLs.

Threat monitoring provides several benefits such as:

  • It can help security professionals to check what is happening on their network.
  • It also assists them to find any vulnerability in their network or applications and how to fix these problems.
  • Threat Monitoring helps to check if the network usage aligns with company’s policy agreement.

Need For Threat Monitoring for Businesses

Here are the two major reasons why threat monitoring is necessary for small businesses:

  • The data of your organization is more important than you think. The biggest mistake that few companies make is that they think they have nothing worth stealing. From a small password to the employees’ data, there is a lot of information that a company wants to keep private. Threat monitoring can help to prevent such issues.
  • You are considered an easy target. You are at a same level of risk as large companies, even though you have less budget to deal with, because these criminals take the path of least resistance.

Threat Monitoring can prove to be a reliable tool when it comes to the security of your network and online portal, no matter how big or small is your work. Proactive approach of Threat Monitoring makes it important for businesses to implement it across their network.

To know more about threat monitoring and its benefits, contact Centex Technologies at (855) 375 – 9654.

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Steps To Secure Your WiFi

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