Data Loss Prevention

March 23, 2015

Data Loss Prevention (DLP) can be defined as a strategy to identify or monitor confidential data to ensure that it is not sent outside a corporate network. It involves real time tracking of data as it moves through the end users in an enterprise and prevents its unauthorized access by implementing strict privacy policies. The term may also be used to describe software solutions that enable the web administrator to control the data that can or cannot be transferred by the users.

With the increasing number of devices connected to the network, Data Loss Prevention has become extremely important for the organizations to maintain their stability and protect confidential information. The types of data that may be leaked include:

  • Corporate Data: such as employee information, company strategies, financial documents etc.
  • Intellectual Property: such as product designs, price lists, source code etc.
  • Customer Data: such as financial records, personal details, credit card and bank account numbers, social security numbers etc.

Mainly, Data Loss Prevention products offer three different types of protection:

  • In-Use Protection: This is applicable when the confidential information needs to be used by certain applications. Access to such data depends upon the user’s ability to pass through different levels of control systems to authenticate his identity such as employee ID, job role and security policies. Additionally, such information is likely to be stored in an encrypted form to prevent the attempts to access snapshots, paging or any other temporary files.
  • In-Motion Protection: This is applicable when the sensitive data is being transferred through the network. Proper encoding methods are implemented to alleviate the risk of spying or hacking attack. The more confidential the information, the tougher the encryption will be.
  • At-Rest Protection: This is applicable when the data is saved on some kind of physical storage medium. It involves restricting access to the programs, monitor the attempts to use such information and use strong encryption to prevent threats to the physical media where the information is stored.

Requirements Of A Data Loss Prevention Software

  • Your DLP product should be capable of finding and protecting all information, regardless of its storage location.
  • It should also be able to track the usage of the data and prevent it from getting out of the organization’s internet network.
  • The system must also accurately detect any potential threats or breaches of network security.
  • Lastly, DLP software must be able to encrypt the sensitive information to prevent loss of data.

It is extremely important to have an effectively functioning Data Loss Prevention system to keep your business and data protected from potential security threats.

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Keeping Your Wireless Internet Secure

March 17, 2015

Setting up a wireless internet network has become much easier these days. All you need is a cable modem or DSL plugged in to a Wi-Fi router. However, most people are not aware of the necessary measures that must be taken to keep the network secure from unauthorized users. Configuring the router settings appropriately is essential to prevent the misuse of your wireless internet.

Given here are some tips that will help to keep your wireless internet secure:

  • Encode With Password: When you set up a Wi-Fi network, make sure you turn on encryption with a WPA2 password. Operating an unsecured network or selecting WEP encoding method is not advisable. With WPA2, your computer will ask you to set up a password that has to be entered by the users who want to access your network. You must create a passcode that is complex, lengthy, unique and contains a combination of alphabets, numbers and special characters. Weak passwords can be easily determined by the hackers to gain access to your network.
  • Change Pre-Set Passwords: Many routers come with a default password set by your administrator company. Cyber criminals know these passwords, so make sure that you change it to something that only you know. The tougher the password, the harder it would be to crack.
  • Disable SSID Broadcast: When someone searches for available Wi-Fi networks, your connection will pop up in the list if you have enabled SSID broadcast. Deactivating this setting will not let everyone know about your wireless network, unless you provide them the information.
  • Enable MAC Filtering: This is probably the easiest way to prevent intruders from accessing your network connection. Most routers have an option to restrict the right to use based on the MAC (Machine Access Code) address of any device. You can create a white list of MAC addresses that you want to allow to use your network.
  • Disable Remote Access: Most routers offer the feature of remotely accessing your wireless internet from anywhere outside of your home network. Even if you have set up a strong password, anyone can gain access to your Wi-Fi without the need of any log in credentials. Disabling remote access will make sure that you are secure from any unauthorized people remotely using your internet connection.

You must also keep your router’s firmware updated to keep your wireless internet secure. Some routers might have the ability to update software automatically. Alternatively, you can check your administrator’s website to see if a newer version is available.

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Google To Rank Mobile Friendly Websites Higher In Search Engine Ranks

March 9, 2015

Google has recently announced a major alteration in its search algorithms in order to yield better results for the mobile users. Starting from April 21 this year, mobile friendly websites will be given a higher ranking in Google’s search results. Keeping in line with the increasing use of mobile devices, these changes are expected to be certainly significant for businesses and entrepreneurs. In addition to this, Google is also focusing on making indexed apps feature more prominently in the search results. Hence, if you are signed in from a mobile device, you will see content relevant to the apps already installed on your device.

According to the statement quoted at Google Webmaster’s official blog, “In reference to the mobile searches, it is important that the users get the most appropriate and relevant results. It does not matter if the information is sought from the mobile websites or the apps. As more and more people are using the internet from these small screen devices, we had to bring changes in our search algorithms.

The company also stated that they will not be making the changes immediately as they want to give enough time to the internet marketers and business owners to be prepared. During this time, they can make the necessary changes to their websites to rank higher in mobile searches.

Given here are some of the tips that can help you make your website mobile friendly and more responsive:

  • Optimize The Layout: Mobile users usually look for the contact information, business hours and directions to your office. Make sure you provide all these information at the top corner of your website, along with a link to Google Maps.
  • Limit The Use Of Images: Inserting too many or high definition images in your website increases its loading time on mobile devices. Therefore, try to limit images and if necessary, use smaller ones or compress them so that they load quickly.
  • Design For Touchscreen: Ensure that all the links and buttons are easy to be clicked. Also, the buttons that are to be used more frequently should be provided at the bottom right corner of the website.
  • Limit Content: Mobile users do not want to read a lengthy content to know about your company. Simplify the website content so that your key products and services can catch their attention immediately.

We at Centex Technologies provide complete SEO and Web Development/ Designing solutions. To create a mobile friendly version of your website, feel free to contact us at – (855) 375-9654.

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What Are DDoS Attacks And How Can You Prevent Them?

February 27, 2015

A ‘Distributed Denial of Service’ (DDoS) attack can be defined as an attempt made by the hackers to make a system unavailable to the users. This is usually accomplished by interrupting the functioning of the host network or a server to which the system is connected. Unlike a Denial of Service (DoS) attack, DDoS uses multiple remotely monitored computers to overpower the target system and making it unable to respond to the requests of legitimate users.

In a DDoS attack, the hacker begins by exploiting certain vulnerability in a particular computer. Using this, the attacker can easily identify and infect the other connected systems. These computers, also called as zombies or bots, are then directed to launch a flood attack towards the target systems.

Tips To Prevent DDoS Attacks

  • Buy More Bandwidth: This is one of the easiest techniques to ensure that you are protected against DDoS attacks. With this, you can easily distribute your traffic to different servers and create a lot of space to handle the persistently increasing users. Purchasing more bandwidth can allow you to handle more requests, thus, tackle low intensity outbreaks.
  • Restrict Connectivity: If you have multiple computers that directly connect to the internet, you must properly configure routers so as to restrict connectivity. For instance, if you need to receive some information from the client’s system, you can configure it to pass from some selected ports through the firewall.
  • Buy Intrusion Detection System (IDS): These are the software applications that are attached to the network in order to monitor all the malicious activities. If anything suspicious is detected, the IDS alerts the network administrator so that preventive measures can be taken well before time.
  • Encode Your Website Efficiently: If you have programmed your website in an efficient way, the botnets need to be more sophisticated to be successful in the attack. Thus, you must make sure that your web pages are properly encoded and involve minimum server requirements to load.

DDoS attacks are becoming increasingly common due to the vulnerabilities in most of the devices. Cyber criminals are finding it very easy to implement these attacks, particularly against small businesses. Following the above mentioned tips can help you to create a resistant web network that is capable of preventing or mitigating the effects of a DDoS attack.

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What Is Botnet And Rootkit Security Threat?

February 23, 2015

Cybercriminals are constantly developing new ways to access computer systems for unlawful purposes. Two of such threats to network security are Botnets and Rootkits, which can infect your computer before you even realize that you are a victim of cybercrime.

Botnet

Botnet simply means a group of bot infected computers. In a botnet attack, the owners of computers do not know that a bot has infected their system and the bots remains dormant till the time they receive a command to perform particular action by their controller or botmaster. The bots are commonly transferred to computers through unprotected internet ports or other malicious downloads.

The number of computers in the botnet can range from just a few to thousands or even more. Botnets are often used in Denial of Service (DoS) attacks, spreading virus and spam, and stealing sensitive data such as bank account or credit card details.

Rootkit

A rootkit is referred to as software that can be installed on a computer system without the user being aware of it. It can either come as a part of a larger software package or installed by an attacker by convincing you to inadvertently download the bug. This allows the hacker to take control of your computer system or network.

It is not always necessary that rootkits are malicious, however, they may hide such activities. The cybercriminals can alter your system programming, access important data, and carry out many other tasks on your computer while being hidden. Rootkits are also used for some genuine purposes such as observing illegitimate activity and preventing misuse of an organization’s network by the employees.

How to protect your PC for Rootkit and Botnet?

  • Make sure you create strong passwords that are difficult to be cracked by the hackers. It should include a combination of uppercase, lowercase letters, special characters and numbers. Do not allow your internet browser to remember passwords.
  • Installing an anti-virus software can also help to avoid attacks by obstructing the malicious users from accessing your network.
  • The anti-malware programs should always be authentic and reliable. They should be constantly updated to search for any viruses or bugs in your system.
  • Always be cautious while using emails and internet. Hackers usually deliver malware in the form of images, videos, links or pop-ups on your computer screen.

Following good cybersecurity practices can help you protect your network and stop the hackers from taking control of your computer system.

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