Employees are like Hacker Candy

March 13th, 2017

Employees are still the central part of all our businesses. Even with all the technology, we still have people to run the operations. The human component of our business is the goal for most hackers. It is easier to find the human weakness than it is to find a network flaw. This human point of infiltration still needs attention, even when you feel your business is secure.

Hackers are smart and agile. It’s a full-time job for them. They don’t get called into meetings, get distracted by co-workers, or have to worry about receiving their W-2 in time for their tax advisors. Their focus is to get into your network using those distractions against your employees. Your employees are busy and focused on what they have to get done, many juggling multiple responsibilities. Hackers like these employees; it’s like candy to them.

Is there any one solution that will remove all risks? No. But there are ways you can help your employees protect themselves and your network. Ransomware, insider threats, phishing–there are so many threats that can halt operations that are critical to your business success. Be aware, prepare.

A combination of defenses helps you reduce the risks we all face in business today. Don’t assume one will solve everything. Develop multiple layers of proactive security. This can include anything from making sure your Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) is current or having consistent employee training, to firewall and virus protection, to Web-use comprehensive monitoring and filtering solutions.

It is also important to have a recorded and tested recovery plan in place. Make the assumption that a breach will happen. This way you are prepared. Most importantly, maintain current backups. Make sure that the backups are not accessible through your network!

The “one” solution to protect your business just doesn’t exist. Maintain a combination of defenses and solutions to cover as many risks as possible. Being proactive will pay off in the long run.

Trusted for over 20 years, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.

Are your employees full of March Madness? They will be!

March 7th, 2017

March Madness always produces a high level of anticipation and excitement. It ranks up there with the Super Bowl and the World Cup for many people. So fans want to make sure they see the games that for every year, the amount of series streaming surpasses expectations. We can all watch them on our phones, tablets, laptops, and desktops at any time and anywhere. Because of this, many managers now allow for some freedom during this time, so their employees can get their yearly March Madness fix. But there are risks to the business to always consider.

Some March Madness 2016 statistics from NCAA to consider:

  • With 18.1 million live hours, the tournament generated more video consumption than any other tournament.
  • The national championship game generated 56 million impressions across March Madness social media accounts, up 112 percent over 2015.
  • Video consumption for social media was also up with 8 million views overall, more than five times the volume of video for last year’s championship game.

Is your business ready?

The first thing that pops into a manager’s mind is increased bandwidth use. It is an important thing to consider for sure since your business has mission-critical functions that have to run for your business to operate efficiently, even during increased Internet use. Making sure you can control and monitor bandwidth use by throttling nonessential traffic if needed, is critical to making the decision to allow streaming during any time, but especially during events like March Madness.

The things that may not immediately come to a manager’s mind may be the increase in malicious links generated during times of special events. In a world with cyber threats, such as ransomware, a business cannot ignore times when this risk increases. March Madness is a time when many keep track of all the games, not just their one team. They follow the process through the whole series and enjoy the competitive nature right down to the Final Four and beyond. They may be more prone to fall for a March Madness ad link for a stat update or phishing e-mail to check the latest game highlights. During the whole series and even before it starts, educating your employees about the increase in cyber threats, such as malicious Web sites and ads, and phishing e-mails, is important. Security solutions that offer features like white/black listing and filtering will allow you to maintain Web-use protection against the human tendency to click without analyzing if the link or e-mail makes sense.

Don’t just lock up employee Web-use. Protect your business and employees from threats, such as bandwidth hogs, malicious Web links, legal liabilities, and even productivity losses. Gain the control and security needed . . . and once again, let the games begin!

About Wavecrest Computing

Trusted for over 20 years, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.

One admin interface to manage all your employees’ Web use–CyBlock Hybrid Array.

December 12th, 2016

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Since all your employees use the Internet in some way every day, whether for cloud services, research, or just e-mail, they are prime targets for hackers, malware, and data theft. Efficiency can play a key role in actively keeping your company secure from as many cyber threats as possible, especially today when your employees can be working in many different locations.

Choosing multiple cloud instances allows for advanced coverage of your distributed workforce but this can be time-consuming if managing each separately. Solution? CyBlock Hybrid Array. Now you can have one server location to manage all your CyBlock Cloud instances as well as your main office CyBlock installation–see charts or run reports that include all the locations or focus on one, monitor any of the paired CyBlock Cloud accounts, and manage any policy changes that can automatically or manually be synced with the appropriate cloud instance.

Easy, efficient, proactive management of your Hybrid deployment with multiple-region CyBlock Cloud capability. Saving more of your time so you can focus on the mission-critical operations.

CyBlock Hybrid allows you to manage the policies for your on-premises and off-premises employees. Using CyBlock Cloud along with your CyBlock Appliance or Software installation, the Hybrid deployment secures remote and mobile users so there is no need to route traffic back to the main office. Free up local server bandwidth; easily monitor, filter, and manage users, both local and remote; and easily access reporting, real-time monitoring, and Dashboard charts for both your CyBlock Cloud and local CyBlock configurations.

To find out more about CyBlock Hybrid and CyBlock Hybrid Array, please contact us today.

About Wavecrest Computing

Celebrating 20 years in business, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.

Don’t let size fool you.

November 30th, 2016

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Don’t be fooled by the name–CyBlock Mini Appliance is powerful, comprehensive, and worth every inch of its compactness.

Maintaining visibility throughout your workforce is key to running a secure business today. Don’t settle on just any solution that really doesn’t meet your needs. If you need coverage for a remote office, have limited space either in your server room or in your office, or are struggling with how to keep your business secure with a limited IT budget, Wavecrest has more choices than ever. No matter what business size or industry type, CyBlock Mini Appliance is likely to be just what you have been looking for.

The powerful Mini Appliance provides the comprehensive Web-use security capabilities of CyBlock, including HTTP and HTTPS URL filtering, comprehensive detailed reporting, secure guest Wi-Fi services with captive portal, advanced threat protection, bandwidth management, cloud services management, as well as coverage for non-HTTP activity, e.g., P2P, torrents, IM, and e-mail. Get all of this in one compact and economical package. The general size of a Wi-Fi hub, the Mini allows you to put it in the corner, on your desk, or in that tiny space you have left in your packed server room!

As a cost-effective choice for any business type or size, the robust, yet compact Mini Appliance provides the leading-edge, comprehensive Web-use security capabilities of CyBlock. Designed to fit every business environment, the Mini Appliance can be paired with CyBlock Appliance or deployed on its own, depending on the required Web-use security solution needs.

For more information on CyBlock Mini Appliance or any of our other products, please contact us today!

About Wavecrest Computing

Celebrating 20 years in business, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.

CyBlock/Cyfin Release 9.2.7 Now Available

November 28th, 2016

We recently released new versions of CyBlock and Cyfin. In this release, a new user ID will be added in new installations or accounts to compile machine updates that produce Web traffic. Also, for products that are uninstalled, a product-specific uninstall page will be displayed to allow you to submit feedback to Sales. The enhancements are highlighted below.

  • CyBlock
    • User ID for Machine Updates. The new *$ user ID with full name “machine updates” will handle machine requests for updates that produce Web traffic. Previously, the traffic was displaying in Dashboard charts with a machine name, and in reports, as an IP address. These URLs are grouped as *$ in the VIP group. Click here for more information on machine names.
  • CyBlock Directory Agent, CyBlock Software, and Cyfin
    • Web Site Uninstall Feedback Page. After uninstalling, a product-specific uninstall landing page will be displayed with a feedback section to be completed and submitted as applicable.

There are also corrections in this release. To see the full release notes for your product, visit our Web site or knowledge base. You can upgrade to the latest release by going to the Help – Check for Updates screen in your product.

For additional assistance, please feel free to contact us.

CyBlock/Cyfin Release 9.2.6 Now Available

November 14th, 2016

In Release 9.2.6, we are pleased to provide the ability to pair multiple cloud accounts in Hybrid deployments extending your local CyBlock policies to employees in multiple regions. Multiple cloud accounts can also be paired with your CyBlock Directory Agent instance to update the groups and IDs information for employees across multiple regions.

Also in this release is the ability to set a different time zone in your cloud account based on where your Web activity is occurring versus the time zone of your cloud instance. For MSP Partners, the time zone can be set for each of your customers. For Hybrid deployments, the time zone can be set for each of your cloud accounts. The enhancements are highlighted below.

  • Multiple CyBlock Hybrid Cloud Accounts
    • Hybrid Configuration. The ability to pair your local CyBlock installation with multiple CyBlock Cloud accounts is now available on the Hybrid Configuration page. Any configuration changes, including policy changes, in your local CyBlock instance are automatically synced with all paired cloud accounts.
    • Data Management. The cloud log file name is now in the format cloudproxy_cloudserver+port_date.txt and is truncated. You can hover over it to view the full name.
    • Real-Time Web Monitor. Your multiple hybrid configurations are displayed in the Data Configuration drop-down field. Monitor the live Web traffic of any cloud account by selecting the associated hybrid configuration.
    • Reporting. Your multiple hybrid configurations are also available for selection in Dashboard charts and in reports allowing you to view the data for any cloud account.
  • Multiple CyBlock Directory Agent Cloud Accounts
    • The ability to pair your CyBlock Directory Agent installation with multiple CyBlock Cloud accounts is now available on the Directory Agent Configuration page. This allows you to synchronize your internal Active Directory with multiple cloud accounts.
    • Any AD configuration changes in CyBlock Directory Agent are automatically synced with all paired cloud accounts.
  • Cloud Web Activity Time Zone
    • Cloud Customers. The time zone in which your organization’s Web activity is occurring can now be set in your CyBlock Cloud account. The default Web activity time zone is the time zone of your cloud instance, but this can be changed. Web activity displayed in the Dashboard charts, reports, and real-time monitors will reflect the time zone that is set for your cloud account.
    • MSP Customers. For MSP Partners, the time zone can be set for each of your customers. Web activity displayed in the Dashboard charts, reports, and real-time monitors will reflect the time zone that is set for that specific customer.
    • Hybrid Deployments. For Hybrid deployments, the time zone can be set for each of your CyBlock Cloud accounts. Reporting is based on your local CyBlock instance time.

There are also corrections in this release. To see the full release notes for your product, visit our Web site or knowledge base. You can upgrade to the latest release by going to the Help – Check for Updates screen in your product.

For additional assistance, please feel free to contact us.

Are Santas taking over your network?

November 10th, 2016

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Can you believe that it is almost the end of the year already? A lot has happened for us this year, and it seems to have made the year go even faster. No matter how fast or slow the year went for you, it is time for all of us to think of the holiday shopping season that is coming up.

Every year, it is predicted that more and more of us will be using online shopping to get a good portion of our list taken care of. With time constraints in normal life, your employees are definitely going to sneak in some shopping on their work devices, clogging up your network bandwidth with nonessential traffic–and it probably won’t just be on Cyber Monday!

Don’t experience additional holiday stress. Go ahead and allow your employees a bit of freedom to do some surfing to find the right toy, tie, or TV for their loved ones. But also give yourself, your IT department, and your whole business the gift of knowing your mission-critical business operations come first, with the bandwidth management, filtering, and reporting tools in our CyBlock Employee Web-use Security Solution.

CyBlock will help you and your IT team with:

  • Bandwidth Management
    • Uncover Web activity that can cause network slowdowns.
    • Spot spikes that could indicate excessive data use.
    • Identify which categories have the most visits triggering high bandwidth usage.
    • Pinpoint which bandwidth-intensive sites are being visited, hogging enterprise bandwidth, and potentially posing security risks.
    • Automatically throttle nonessential traffic by content category or group.
    • Stay informed with triggered alerts and real-time monitoring.
  • Web-use Filtering and Reporting
    • Limit the time users are online by the hour and day of the week.
    • Identify risk, and analyze usage of your network resources.
    • Configure policy exceptions for different users and groups.
    • Use white & black lists to restrict or allow access to certain sites.
    • Cover your main office, remote users, and branch offices.
    • Get complete, accurate, actionable, & compliance-ready reports.

Find ways to satisfy all your business and employee needs. Give your employees the gift of online shopping time during this holiday season, while making sure your IT team receives the gift of proactively throttling bandwidth for noncritical applications, getting alerts, and gaining visibility into bandwidth hogs.

About Wavecrest Computing

Celebrating 20 years in business, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud and guest Wi-Fi services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.

Things That Lie In Wait

November 1st, 2016

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There are many shows on cable today that portray instant recognition of a breach. To repeat what all others in the actual cyber industry say . . . not realistic.

Think of the scenario where an employee opens a file or accesses a malicious Web site. Step one is done. Nothing happens; the employee shrugs his or her shoulders and moves on. Nothing happened, so we are all good, right? Wrong. In reality, malware can happen behind the scenes with no visual effect at all at the time of being infected. The malware is just lying in wait. It either waits for an external signal–a preprogrammed time or until a specific action on the host computer is done. A hacker then would have access to look around, doing nothing noticeable, just checking things out . . . until the time that he finds what he wants.

Six months pass. All of a sudden, systems are breached, potentially causing loss of controls, data, or financial information. And no one knows where or how it happened until a thorough investigation finally points back to the past point in time.

It sounds unavoidable, right? No, it’s not unavoidable but the chances increase all the time that it will happen to your business. But if you take steps to protect and prepare as much as possible, the damage can be potentially avoided or at least somewhat overcome.

How? Here are 5 steps to try to avoid or quickly recover from a breach:

  1. BACK UP!!! Enough said. Think cloud, separate, secure, and frequent. Ransomware, a type of malware, takes over your files and holds them hostage. With a secure and separate backup, your business can go on operating.
  2. Train. Train your employees for anything that could happen. Teach them about current cyber threats; keep them informed. They can be considered an additional “firewall.”
  3. Use patch management. The days of worrying about how frustrating the changes will be from new updates are over. Patch consistently . . . because many of the patches today are security related and crucial to staying protected.
  4. Apply multiple layers of security. Your firewall will not protect you from a threat that originates internally. And yes, many happen using some form of an internal breach such as phishing and e-mails with malware links, or by way of privileged credentials whether internally or from a breach at a third-party contractor. Get a comprehensive employee Web-use security solution that will block access to malicious sites and links.
  5. Monitor. Watch it all. You will see trends, user behavior, and anomalies. Monitor network activity and the activity that accesses the Internet. Guest Wi-Fi networks, BYOD, and employee Web use should be included. Make sure you have visibility into what is going on with a solution that not only provides real-time monitoring, but also forensic-level detail reporting easily accessible by both IT and managers.

Overall, taking steps to ensure your business is protected is crucial, but know that you can still keep critical business operations functioning following any type of breach. Providing proactive solutions to protect, secure, and manage your business’s Web use in a cost-effective, agile, and customer-centric way is what we do. Let us help.

About Wavecrest Computing

Celebrating 20 years in business, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit http://www.wavecrest.net.

Is anyone listening?

October 13th, 2016

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What was your first reaction last year when hearing of the Cisco acquisition of OpenDNS? Many comments we have heard include . . . yup . . . “there they go again.” There are always transitions and changes within the business world, many of them positive. We all understand that. But the changes that can occur from these kinds of acquisitions can end up costing you, the customer or the partner, more than you signed up for. As an OpenDNS Umbrella customer, are you getting tired of riding the corporate wave until you eventually see all of the prior benefits to remaining a customer melt away? It usually takes about a year to kick in. We have seen it in other big acquisitions, and there is a consistent pattern of what happens.

We can make a difference for you. With a positive SMB mentality, Wavecrest strongly believes in one-on-one communication with our prospects, customers, and partners. When you reach out to us, we have a human being on the other end of the line who knows the product well, communicates well, and will take the extra step to help your enterprise and employees be more secure. You don’t have to go through automated calls, ticketing, or several levels of technical support to reach the person with the knowledge you need. For more than 20 years, we have been a hardworking, successful, customer-centric business, and we don’t plan on changing that for at least the next 20!

Wavecrest also has the products you require–agile and reliable solutions for your Web Security needs, ranging from software and hardware deployments to cloud and hybrid deployments. No matter your business size, industry, or distributed workforce, Wavecrest has a solution for you.

Don’t settle for a solution provider that isn’t listening to you. Let Wavecrest focus on your business and your specific requirements. Talk to us today.

About Wavecrest Computing

Celebrating 20 years in business, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use security management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services and guest Wi-Fi networks, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.

Find your bandwidth hogs and throttle them.

October 5th, 2016

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It has been a while since we talked bandwidth. Bandwidth usage seems to be one of those things that is now being taken for granted. We have ransomware and hackers to be concerned about! But beware! Hidden behind the assumption that you need as much bandwidth as possible to keep your business running is the secret streamer, daring downloader, and just plain old bandwidth hog.

Still potentially wreaking havoc on your mission-critical operations, bandwidth hogs can slow the whole business down. This could mean missed deadlines, late paychecks, productivity losses, and more.

What should you be looking for? In general terms, there are relatively easy signs.

  • Are you seeing bandwidth charge increases from your ISP?
  • Are you getting complaints from Internet-dependent staff like accounting or marketing?
  • Have you noticed certain times of day appearing slower on your network?
  • Do you run your guest Wi-Fi on your corporate network?

First off, run your guest Wi-Fi separately from your corporate network. This will add another layer of security protection for mission-critical operations. But remember, your business is still responsible for the guest Wi-Fi use even when it is run separately, so make sure you have a solution in place with a captive portal for your guest Wi-Fi network.

The most useful thing you can do if you answered “Yes” to any of the above questions is to get visibility. If you can’t tell where and when the bandwidth slowdowns are happening, then you are just throwing money in the air. Find an employee Web-use solution that will allow you to see trends and usage, and run detailed reports, so you can make informed decisions to control, throttle, and manage bandwidth usage. One of the best tools is being able to see bandwidth usage in real time, so make sure to find a solution that provides you with this important benefit.

Bandwidth may have moved a bit down on the importance list because of malware, ransomware, and data theft, but do not leave it off the list. It still has a huge impact on how your business operates daily. Find your bandwidth hogs and throttle them. You will see almost immediate improvements in workflow, efficiency, and frustration levels.

About Wavecrest Computing

Celebrating 20 years in business, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.