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Managed IT Services in Miami Can Help Small Businesses Secure Operations Cost-Effectively

Managed IT services in Miami is important even to the smallest of businesses. Why? Well, to put it bluntly, small businesses are a bullseye. It’s not so much that they’re a bigger target than larger businesses; it’s that they’re easier to hit. Think of it this way: a big business is like a massive space station above the atmosphere. A small business is like a Goodyear blimp a few hundred feet off the ground. If you’ve just got a few rifles, which one is easier to hit?

Small businesses often don’t have the same levels of security as larger businesses because they can’t always afford it. Additionally, small businesses aren’t expecting to be hit, so they get out of the practice of properly securing operations. These are just a few of the reasons small businesses are the target of approximately 43% of all cyberattacks.

Something else to consider is that cybercriminals are generally well versed with statistics. They understand trends and try to use those trends to their advantage. One trend they look out for are the days when people use their credit and debit cards a lot. This means that time when sales and promotions (additional revenue) launched every holiday is a prime opportunity for exploitation. Attacks will happen before, during, and after any holiday when spikes in hacking activity are expected. Managed IT services company in Miami will commonly recommend these four basic steps to protect your organization against nefarious “hacktivity”:

  1. Determine the effectiveness of your existing cyber security.
  2. Regularly train employees and management pertaining to new security changes.
  3. Design an incident response plan that is standardized throughout your organization.
  4. Establish a process of continuously reviewing and updating policies as necessary.

Existing Efforts

Sometimes, you’ve got cyber security solutions in place already safeguarding your system as cost-effectively and accurately as possible, given your resources. Sometimes, you’ve got essentially nothing— or some middle ground between both extremes. Either way, before upgrading your systems, you need to determine what— if anything— needs some improvement and then go about effecting repairs as well as upgrades.

Training

You should probably establish a weekly or a monthly security training solution— whatever is most cost-effective in terms of employee productivity. Security changes and best practices are going to transition and multiply continuously, so you might as well assume you’ll have to keep training employees as new technology develops.

Incident Response Plans

Even the best security is bound to have some overlooked vulnerability. If you don’t have a plan for the worst-case scenario, you’re sunk. So, install the lifeboats of incident response plans. MSPs can help you cover all the necessary angles.

Continuous Review and Update

Policies will need to change as time goes by; there’s no way around it. So, make sure that you’re constantly upgrading your security solutions in order to keep your business’s tech environment contemporary. Right now, this is especially true regarding cloud and mobile devices.

Securing Your Operations

Managed IT services in Miami through Michell Consulting Group can cost-effectively upgrade your security and help you remain continuously relevant and protected. Contact us today for help choosing the right security solutions for your business.

The Importance of Securing IT Services in Miami that is OPSEC-Optimized

Operational Security

IT services in Miami will have many facets. Today, one of the most important is defined as OPSEC or Operational Security. With OPSEC, security professionals take on the characteristics of a potential antagonist. They try to look at your system as though they were someone who would like to compromise operations for one reason or another. This way, they’re able to cohesively identify vulnerabilities with greater accuracy than traditional security. Their defense measures are, in a way, offensive, whereas all other approaches are defensive.

Seasonal marketing initiatives launched are one of the critical times your company’s OPSEC should be on point. A regular check on your company systems, critical information, and vulnerabilities allow time to anticipate countermeasures. However, it’s never too late to get some last-minute patchwork in. Here are five things that OPSEC security does that may apply to your operation but will be better served through professional organizations. These things include:

  • Identification and protection of sensitive information
  • Identification of prospective threats
  • Analysis and rectification of present weaknesses
  • Likely appraisal of risk
  • Determination and construction of countermeasures

Identification and Protection of Sensitive Information

IT services in Miami will often go here first because the quicker this kind of data is secured, the safer a business becomes. Financial data, client data, employee data, product distribution, design, research data— the list goes on. You need to determine that which is most integral to your business and protect it.

Prospective Threat Identification

You’re not likely to be threatened by every possible cybercriminal enterprise. Your business is more likely to be “under the knife” from certain quarters. If you’re in the financial industry, you’ll likely have different possible threats than those who work in retail. With optimized OPSEC techniques, you can quickly identify where threats will come from and better protect yourself.

Patching the Holes

You’ve got security holes. Everybody does. Some are going to be more accessible to criminals than others. What an OPSEC team can do is look at data to find vulnerabilities. They can check out what safeguards you’ve got in place and whether those are undermined by any loopholes or not.

Risk Appraisal

You want to see which vulnerabilities or threats pose the most risk and tier your security efforts accordingly. Things at this level should be prioritized according to threat. Larger threats should be dealt with immediately and smaller ones last. For example, if you’re getting chased by a bear and climb a tree, you probably won’t even think about checking your hair for ticks until after you’ve escaped the bear. It’s the same with IT. What is a greater threat to your company? Find and fix that first.

Countermeasures

Once you’ve done all these things, it’s time to design and implement countermeasures. It is at this step where OPSEC through professional providers becomes most effective.

Securing Professional OPSEC Solutions

IT services in Miami through Michell Consulting Group can cost-effectively optimize your business’s security solutions. Contact us for OPSEC that has been established by deep experience. How? Because we’ve implemented such security measures among a diversity of clients.

The Importance of IoT Cyber Security with IT Support in Miami

Some IT support company in Miami specialize in providing cyber security for devices that use the Internet of Things (IoT) technology. IoT is a growing trend in the IT world that consists of any device that connects to the Internet to send or receive information. These devices include thermostats, baby monitors, appliances, security cameras, and more. It is estimated that over 24 billion devices will use this technology by the year 2020. While IoT technology offers many benefits, it is important to understand the risks and the best ways to avoid them. Without the proper protection, these devices can easily be manipulated by hackers or through cyberattacks.

Here are a few ways that you can decrease the risk of becoming a victim of these malicious cyber schemes and keep your privacy protected:

Change Default Username and Password

One of the best ways to keep your home network protected is through changing the default username and password. Using a generic password can easily be hacked by a computer program. Instead, it is better to use a complex password that consists of lower and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols. It is also a good idea to routinely change the password every few weeks. While these steps may not be bulletproof, they will make it much more difficult for a hacker to gain access to confidential information.

Update Software

As you know, cyberattacks and exploits are continuously being created on a daily basis. It is crucial to download the most recent security updates and patches as soon as they become available. Failing to download these updates significantly increases the chances of you becoming the next victim of a cyberattack. It is also a good idea to read the patch notes and understand which problems the security patch is addressing and if you need to be aware of any specific cyber threats. Fortunately, partnering with an IT support firm in Miami will enable you to receive the latest patches to combat the wide variety of cyber security threats.

Create Lock Screen Password

An often-overlooked form of security is the ability to create a lock screen password for each device. These passwords can typically be created by accessing the settings of a device. Another good idea is to know which downloaded apps are collecting information and why it’s needed. Deleting unnecessary apps can free up space and further increase your protection.

Turn Off Smart Functions Not in Use

Many new cars are being installed with GPS location devices, entertainment systems, and hands-free calling that use IoT technology. While these technologies offer many benefits, it is essential to turn off these smart functions whenever they are not in use. Security breaches are becoming more common through these new forms of software, and turning off these functions while they are not in use is the most effective way to avoid becoming the next victim.

The use of IoT technology offers immense benefits, but it also needs to be handled with care. At Michell Consulting Group, our IT support team in Miami offers the latest protection against these cyber security threats. Our staff is trained to help answer any questions and guide you through the complex IT world. Contact us today to learn more.

Working with an ERP Consultant to Maximize Potentiality

How Machine Learning Augments ERP

An ERP consultant can help you determine the best ways to augment operations as regards tech trends presently defining the market. Machine learning is especially considerable as pertains to enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions. Following are several ways machine learning is coming to dominate this IT area:

Root Cause Determination

One thing an ERP consultant is likely to point out as pertains to modern machine learning techniques is in reference to “root causes”. What initiated operational discord? Did errors transpire from incorrect interface with software, or is there some glitch in ERP coding? Could it be that exterior interference caused an operational hiccup?

Answering these questions is difficult without machine learning techniques. With machine learning, that which doesn’t apply to the situation can be automatically ruled out, and issues initiating operational discord more swiftly and accurately identified.

Think of it like that little device AutoZone uses to diagnose a “Check Engine” light on your car. ERP machine learning as regards root cause determination acts like that little device.

Forecasting from Statistic Trends

Machine learning gives ERP software predictive capability through data examination. Machine learning can digest information such that a prospective outcome results. As machine learning develops, such forecasting becomes increasingly accurate. The better the forecasting, the less risk in forward operations.

For example, if you ran an assembly line and had a certain specialized robot, machine learning could monitor that robot’s operation to help you get an idea of how long it will last under existing stress levels and where components are likely to break down.

Through ERP software incorporating machine learning, you can extend the lifespan of hardware and more efficiently conduct operations.

Streamlined Production

When you can identify operational issues at their root and forecast operational difficulties, you’ve got an increased ability to streamline infrastructure. Greater operational optimization reduces expenses and increases profit.

ERP software that doesn’t incorporate machine learning techniques will become less competitive than similarly-situated operations putting these innovations into play.

Working with consultants helps you determine what sort of ERP solutions will best serve you in the long-run. Automation is generally positive. But if you’ve got things improperly configured, you could be signing yourself up for unnecessary trouble.

Finding Solutions That Fit Operations

Working with an ERP consultant such as Michell Consulting Group can help you streamline production through machine learning as applied to ERP software. Root cause determination, forecasting, and more are all made possible through modern innovations in this area. Still, since it is a burgeoning region of tech, you want professional assistance. Contact us for more information.

Why Your IT Services in Miami Should Understand Email Compromise

There are many types of cyberattacks that your IT services providers in Miami should know about, and one of these attacks is called the Business Email Compromise (BEC). It involves a hacker impersonating a company executive to mislead employees, vendors, or customers to gain access to sensitive information. Here are ways your IT team can protect your enterprise from a BEC:

How Attackers Use Deception

The reason your IT services providers in Miami should be aware of BEC, also known as a “man-in-the-email” attack, is that it’s easy for people to be fooled by it. An employee, for example, might think they are actually communicating with their boss in an email and then fall into the trap of exposing something valuable like a company credit card number.

The attacker is able to be deceptive by first researching information about the target. They become familiar with the company website, staff contacts, and press releases before launching an attack, typically on an executive account. Armed with deep knowledge about the company, the hacker can convincingly pose as an insider in an email.

Once the hacker penetrates an email account, he or she can change settings such as the reply-to address so that the owner is not alerted by account activity. An attacker may also deceive recipients by using a spoofed domain which is one character different from a familiar domain and easy to overlook.

Educating Your Staff

It is imperative that you and your IT team make each of your employees aware that they must be cautious of what they click in an email. Let them know that BEC-style phishing attacks are among the costliest in damages to a company. If workers are not trained to watch out for cyberattacks, they may end up contributing to the problem rather than the solution. Many phishing attacks are a result of employee errors.

More BEC scams to watch out for are when a hacker sends fraudulent invoices to customers or vendors requesting a payment to the criminal’s account, or when thse hacker pretends to be an attorney and sends messages to clients asking for payment right away. Scammers who continue to get away with this technique potentially end up extracting millions of dollars from suppliers after a few years. In some cases, attackers may be more interested in trade secrets than money.

How to Prevent Business Email Compromise

The key to stopping BEC attacks is to prepare for them. Unsuspecting employees falling for social engineering isn’t the only factor that enables these attacks. Your system may not have enough layers of security, making it more vulnerable to outsider penetration. Here are steps to take to protect your digital assets:

  1. Develop strict access policies
  2. Use multi-factor authentication such as a password + pin number
  3. Train employees to identify fraudulent emails
  4. Constantly monitor your network with malware detection software
  5. Consider virtualization, which can limit the impacts of breaches

Make sure your IT services providers in Miami cares about protecting your business from cyberattacks. Otherwise, move on to a more experienced and knowledgeable IT team. To learn more about cyber security, contact us at Michell Consulting Group and let us protect your data and applications from attacks.