Category Archives: Managed IT Services

Is Ransomware a Threat to Enterprise Back-ups?

Recently, in May 2017 a ransomware named WannaCry was the matter of discussion among many organizations. The considerable damage WannaCry made to some of the corporate giants was constantly in the news and organizations were horrified due to the extensive loss in data. However, interestingly it didn’t take much time for the organizations to recover the lost data back from back-ups. Although this is a good thing, it may be an alarming situation if the enterprises are slowly adapting to ransomware, it is surely going to target advanced backup strategies.

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How could ransomware target system backups?

When the user attempts to hold data located at the target for ransom, it can be difficult for the target to restore it from the backup. Most of the home users and municipal corporations don’t invest heavily on data backup and recovery systems and rely on the basic, built-in protection for their computers, laptops, and servers. This basic system, known as Windows Volume Shadow Copy is present in the editions since Server 2003 and XP and stores pictures of the files on an endpoint. As it is commonly used by home users as well as small businesses, the ransomware such as WannaCry have tools to delete it.

Ransomware like Locky, WannaCry, Cryptolocker, and CryptXXX are capable of deleting the volume shadow copies with the help of strings in command line. This is probably the reason why some ransomware variants failed to make much profit as most enterprises use more robust protections than just shadow copies. WannaCry hit enterprises rather than attacking small businesses or home users and as a result global companies with thousands of employees fell victim to its attack. Within an enterprise, data backup adoption is at extremely high levels while cloud backup and recovery comprise a high percentage of cloud-based investments. Companies have the best potential to overcome a ransomware attack by restoring from backup.

Conclusively, with a malware like WannaCry, it’s proven by the ransomware authors they can attack enterprises. However, they don’t have a persistent mechanism. Additionally, the enterprise backups are too robust to cause much damage as they are capable of retrieving data from backups within a day at most. Although the enterprise backup systems are sufficiently secured, there’s something really to worry about as hackers intelligently innovate ways to overcome these technical obstacles. So, companies must be prepared with the possibility of ransomware attacking their backups for encryption or deletion.

Visit http://www.netactivity.us/wannacry-ransomware-latest-hack-explained-and-prevention-tips for more details about how Net Activity, Inc. is helping organizations stay protected from the malicious malware attacks.

Source – http://www.netactivity.us/blog/is-ransomware-a-threat-to-enterprise-back-ups/

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Sophos Security Equipment – Security Made Simple

Choosing from the many brands of Unified Threat Management (UTM) is a tough task pertaining to the fact that many competitive companies have set their foothold on the market. The decision making process has become more difficult with overwhelming options available out there. To narrow down your quest for network security equipment, here is a proven technology that’s relied upon by many users for managing their IT security in a cost-efficient manner – Sophos.

Sophos Technologies, an international network security appliances provider features unified threat management appliances that offer user identity-based network security. Providing extensive security to individuals, it offers high-end security to organizations on a larger scale.

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However, before deciding on a UTM provider, you must consider the following parameters:

Intrusion prevention

The UTM provider must be capable of identifying malicious activity and log pertinent information about any fraudulent activity. The Sophos Security equipment performs the intrusion prevention that is a to menace entities and prevent their access. It bounces back intruders even before they enter your system and cause further damage.

Anti-Virus scanning

With the emergence of various kinds of malware, ransomware, backdoors, malicious LSPs, Trojans, etc. the role of anti-viruses expanded to implementing strategies to protect the PCs from other computer threats such as malicious and infected URLs, phishing attacks, electronic spamming, and advanced persistent threats.

Bandwidth adjusting

The UTM provider must detect the tempering of your internet service by an ISP. Sophos abates the traffic coming to a network to avoid congestion and allows intersections to perform smoothly.

Data loss prevention

Data loss prevention is a strategy that is used to prevent sending critical data across in a corporate network, accidently or maliciously. Your unified threat management provider should ensure NDA (non-disclosure agreement) that is capable of protecting proprietary information or any type of trade secrets.

Reporting

Many UTMs create reports that show how your network is being used. The implementation of reports involves extracting, transforming, and loading procedure (ETL). Reporting is very important for knowledge administration and business intelligence.Sophos tracks and stores all the information and facilitates easy retrieval.

Call us at 888-545-5346 to know more details or visit http://www.netactivity.us/services/it-managed-services to browse through our IT managed service offerings.

Source – http://www.netactivity.us/blog/sophos-security-equipment-security-made-simple/

Beware of PC Registry Cleaners: Are They Safe?

Windows registry is a repository which collects massive data about your computer as it practically records everything that is performed on Windows. It is literally a cluttered space as Windows, by itself is not capable of cleaning the system efficiently as it’s always busy in creating new entries. Even though you uninstall a program or application, it leaves some unneeded pointers in the registry and thus slows down your system.

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To resolve this issue, many PC registry cleaners are marketed to the users with the claim that they would speed up the computer system making it function better. However, before making your decision to purchase or install a free PC cleaner on your computer system because above all claims they make everything depends on the condition of your registry and the effectiveness of the registry cleaner that you select. Another thing to be considered is that registry cleaners usually delete things from the registry. While most of the times it is safe, there are times when registry cleaners caused serious problems to the computers and their data.

Though most of the modern PC registry cleaners feature built-in methods to reverse changes when things go against expectations, it is not recommended to invest in an advertised PC cleaning system. Being diligent while making your choice is the first step towards protecting your system from unwanted attacks. Also, remember to back up your registry before letting the cleaner to remove or delete entries. Doing this would save you even if the registry cleaner doesn’t have an ‘undo’ option, you can use the backed up registry file to restore it back.

One more important thing to be highlighted is that registry cleaners do not speed up the computers and so, you do not need to run them regularly. Hackers are talented enough to compromise the quality of the wide range of PC cleaning software as happened with CCleaner software in August and September wherein malicious hackers had illegally modified the version 5.33 of CCleaner software which was available for download for about a month.

Your computer data is precious and we, at Net Activity, Inc. recommend you not to install any PC registry cleaners without proper survey of their history. Also, think twice before going for cleaners that invest huge amounts on marketing and advertisements as they are no good.

Source – http://www.netactivity.us/blog/beware-of-pc-registry-cleaners-are-they-safe/

Top 5 Benefits of Outsourcing IT Through Managed Services

Just until a few years ago, business owners, especially the start-ups or ones who have small scale investments worried about the IT set up and resources that estimated a piled-up expense. However, with the concept of outsourcing all the IT tasks, it became easier and manageable. Outsourcing is a business strategy that has proven its efficiency in establishing businesses faster and allowing them to cut excess costs, thereby promoting a convincing business structure. IT managed service providers have performed outstandingly to offer more tangible benefits to small as well as large scale businesses.

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Top 5 Benefits of Outsourcing IT Through Managed Services

Read further to understand the reason why outsourcing IT operations and maintenance has found greater acceptance in the past few years.

  1. Drastic Fall in Operational Costs:Moving the IT off-site can result in huge savings for businesses. As this is the main driver for decision making for small businesses, cost consideration draws in the interest of business owners. The hardware expenses, cabling, storage, datacenter, servers, etc. are taken care of by the cloud vendor.
  2. Inexpensive Upgrades:IT demands regular updates and outsourcing IT means the updates are the responsibility of the managed IT service provider and not the business. Sometimes, it is obvious for the non-IT persons to skip or ignore a few updates that could offer something more to their business. When trained IT professionals take charge of a company’s IT requirements, they become liable for any further upgrades, of course at a nominal fee.
  3. Undivided Attention on Core Business Activities:There’s intense competition on the market and survival of businesses depends on stringent lines. If non-IT people spend their precious time in understanding IT, they might lose on something that they are good at that would fetch better returns.
  4. Better Disaster Management:Natural disasters may occur at any time and could cost a huge loss to the business data. Most businesses are not well-equipped for recovery options in case of these unexpected disasters. Outsourcing to an IT expert would take this worry away as they are designed to handle such crisis without letting any harm done to your routine operations.
  5. Increased Productivity:Organizations who have a smooth IT infrastructure have reportedly been performing well consistently. A qualified managed service provider contributes so much to the business that the overall productivity automatically increases.

The Net Activity team complements core businesses by taking charge of their complete IT operations and has successfully partnered with hundreds of organizations to help them save considerably on their IT spending. You can benefit by hiring our reliable IT managed services. We are just a call away. Call us at 888-545-5346 to know more details or visit http://www.netactivity.us/services/it-managed-services to browse through our service offerings.

Source – http://www.netactivity.us/blog/top-5-benefits-of-outsourcing-it-through-managed-services/

How To Choose Trusted Managed IT Service Provider For Your Business?

Today, business sizes are not big enough to be able to afford hiring and maintaining a team of professionally trained IT technicians with the infrastructure required for the same. Therefore, to focus on their core operations, many businesses are thinking intelligently and economically by hiring an outside firm to take care of the IT operations instead of investing substantially in IT. However, this must be a careful decision as with all the dependency on computers, networks, servers, emails, or VoIP systems. Businesses can’t imagine downtime in today’s 27 / 7 work environment. So, choosing a Managed IT Service Provider needs to have a thoughtful approach.

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Here are some things to consider while making your selection

Technical Competence

The level of competence of a managed service provider should define their criteria to walk you through your selection list. The staff working at the provider ought to be well-trained and experienced enough to be able to handle your specific business needs.

Flexibility at Work

The managed service provider must serve you at any emergency hour instead of being available for certain hours when you are working too. You can work out these kinds of arrangements while signing the contract so that there are no complications or lapse in service.

Remote Monitoring

IT has advanced to a level that there’s no need for the IT technician to be present at your premises to solve an issue. By simply accessing your system remotely would resolve issues. With remote monitoring applications, your IT managed services provider can monitor systems hourly or minute by minute and alert you in case any ambiguities are observed.

Billing Methods

Once you’re confident about the quality of services provided by a Managed Service Provider, you must be assured of the genuineness of the amount they bill you for. For this, you must be aware about the market trends and have a fair idea of what costs how much. All said and done, it’s a sensitive matter and you get to know the pros and cons of the services provided by a Managed IT Service Provider only when you begin your contract with them. So, it is a wise choice to get along with an established and reliable IT Managed Services Provider like Net Activity, Inc. who are equipped with latest technology and trained professionals to work for business’s very crucial IT infrastructure. For more details, please visit http://www.netactivity.us/services/it-managed-services or discuss your business requirements with Harry Bhatia, President, Net Activity at 888-545-5346.

Source – http://www.netactivity.us/blog/how-to-choose-trusted-managed-it-service-provider-for-your-business/

3 Easy Techniques for Migrating to Managed IT Services

All the roads lead to managed IT services. Yes, whether you agree or not, whatever is the size of your business, hiring IT support services is the final destination. The benefits of outsourcing your network management services are widely known. Resellers, traditional solution providers, integrators, and product oriented solution providers – all have been migrating to the managed services model from at least a decade. The reasons for moving over are clear – higher growth rate, cost efficiency, proactive solutions, 24×7 assistance, and many more. Research and Markets predicts that the global managed services market will grow at a 12.4 percent clip through 2018. Managed services, especially the managed security services offer a great potential to generate higher margins.  managed-it-service

A planned and thoughtful approach can help your migration to hiring an MSP. Here is a glimpse of what can ease the process:

Conducting a Gap Analysis: Performing a gap analysis can help you with a roadmap to reach to the managed services space. It will help you understand whether you need to retain personnel or hire new sales and technical employees. At this stage, companies can decide whether to manage its own infrastructure or hire the services of a third-party hosting or cloud service provider.

Revising Business Approaches: This is undoubtedly a great transition and businesses will need to develop service level agreements (SLAs) and manage them. Companies will require new way of delivering services and measuring results.

Automating Service Deliveries: MSPs perform many customer support duties remotely instead of dispatching technicians for on-site support. For making this efficiency a reality, MSPs need to automate deliveries. As a client, you should check to see whether your MSP provides automatic service deliveries.

Why search elsewhere if you get cost efficient managed IT services at Net Activity, Inc.? We have expert solutions for managing your IT network services. Please call Harry Bhatia at 2165035150 X 206 to discuss further details or visit:http://www.netactivity.us/it-managed-services.html to know more about our service offerings.

Source: http://www.netactivity.us/blog/3-easy-techniques-for-migrating-to-managed-it-services/

5 False Impressions About Managed IT Service Providers

I like to do it myself”, says a traditional businessperson. Do you think the same way? If not, you have progressed into a modern approach. Businesses have transformed processes and they no longer survive alone. They require assistance to stabilize their operations and multiply results. One such aid is – IT Managed Services. Many turn to the Managed Service Providers (MSPs) for maintaining a 24×7 monitoring of servers and managing a constant network uptime. However, some still fear the negative consequences of hiring MSPs’ services.

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Let us clarify the details:
The costs of hiring an MSP will surpass that of hiring an internal IT resource:
Yes. The initial cost is quite a bit. However, there are packages you can choose from. On the other hand, having an internal resource would cost you salary plus overhead expenses (insurance, taxes, vacation, sick days, etc.)

Internal IT person is not required:
Hiring an MSP doesn’t mean that you will have to fire your internal IT resource. For trivial or day-to-day matters, your internal resource is quickly reachable. Outsourcing operational support to a Managed IT Service Provider assists internal IT departments to fill the gaps in their day-to-day responsibilities.

Outsourcing IT is a preferable option only for large corporations:
This stereotype has existed until recently. Now, businesses of all sizes are able to outsource their IT functions. Small and medium sized businesses also have started utilizing the managed services as they can save time for other important things.

They will not understand our business:
There is an ever-existing fear. Will they take it very lightly? Managed Service Providers are third parties who are responsible for a consistently managed IT functioning at your office and managing it rightly. Many organizations just cannot trust anyone when it comes to operating a part of their responsibilities. Managed Service Providers are experts in doing their job and in some cases better trained than your existing internal IT resource. So, you can trust them and their job.

All of the IT jobs have to be outsourced:
Just because you have decided to outsource, it doesn’t imply that you have to hand-over 100% of the IT services to the MSPs. Businesses can choose to have the MSPs work on a customized service sheet highlighting on specific business areas.

IT Managed Service Providers are a group of well trained, experienced and professional IT resources who dedicatedly serve customers manage their IT infrastructure. Net Activity, Inc. is one such provider of IT support services in Ohio. Their monitoring solutions at a fixed price take the worry and anxiety out of knowing that your systems are up and running. If you wish to try their result-oriented services, please contact http://www.netactivity.us/contact.html Harry Bhatia at 2165035150 X 206 or read the details by visiting IT Managed Services.

Source: http://www.netactivity.us/blog/5-false-impressions-about-managed-it-service-providers/