Don’t let size fool you.

Wednesday, November 30th, 2016

smallpower

 

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.

Can you see your enterprise shadow IT?

Monday, July 20th, 2015

shadow-it-300x171Can you? It’s there…hidden on your employees’ devices and on your network. We all know people try to use the path of least resistance in getting something done. Today, cloud computing allows us all to do almost anything from anywhere with relatively no resistance at all. Within corporations though, this can become a problem commonly known as shadow IT. “There are an astonishing 10,000 cloud services available on the market today, which creates a growing problem for IT around Shadow IT as only 9.3 percent of those apps meet enterprise data, security and legal requirements, cloud security company Skyhigh Networks found in its Q1 2015 Cloud Adoption and Risk Report.” Corporations need to control their proprietary information, network, and Web security. While employees may be thinking they can get their job done faster, the corporation is thinking about threats. “The result is technologies that empower individuals and teams limit the organisation as a whole.”

There are several views for this, all valuable. From the employees’ view, they believe they are finding ways to be more productive and efficient by using technology that is easily accessible and likely, not costing the corporation anything additional. It is quick and easy and can get the job done before the IT department would even have a chance to look at a request form. So, why would the corporation be upset? Here’s why–unauthorized applications, or shadow IT, can cause serious risks, such as Malware, data loss, and other severe network security concerns. As the responsible party, IT needs to know what is happening, especially when it comes to the random unauthorized applications users are bringing into the network.

What can be done? Which view holds more importance? That depends on your organization but gathering the information to make that decision can be quick and easy. You need total visibility into Web use so you can find and analyze any potential shadow IT. Proactive, comprehensive reporting of all Web-use activity allows a full view of users’ activities. IT and management need to see detailed drill-down activity per user, per group, or per category, and determine if the “shadow” application is to be quarantined, or discover the application is actually useful to the organization as a whole and add to the acceptable applications list.

It is important to take into consideration the employees’ need to have access to useful and contemporary tools. No post, article, or news story can tell you what to do within your organization. Only you know what will best suit your environment. Try collaboration though, between users, management, and IT. The key is to find the most useful applications and move toward applications that work, with the best interest of the overall corporation at heart.

Wavecrest Computing has been the recognized leader in Web Security for over 19 years with CyBlock and Cyfin Solutions. These scalable filtering and forensic reporting analysis products are designed to enable organizations to successfully address Internet abuse, legal liability, shadow IT, workforce productivity, and Web security threats.

Wait Until You Hear How Many Hours a Day an EPA Official Confessed to Watching Porn at Work

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

Bad-Press-PublicityIn today’s world, many if not most employees have access to the Web at work. For the most part, that’s a good thing, and in some cases essential.  Unfortunately, that same access has a dark side. That’s because certain workers will inevitably visit illicit or risky Web sites, and such visits can expose the organization to serious legal liability.  The most troublesome sites are those devoted to pornography.  Sites devoted to gambling, illegal drugs, hate speech and criminal activity can also create legal issues, albeit to a lesser extent.  In addition to exposing the organization to legal liability, visits to inappropriate sites cause other serious issues such as lost productivity and wasted bandwidth.

To read the full article about the EPA official click here.

 

For more information about Wavecrest’s product offerings.

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877-442-9346 (U.S. and Canada) Ext. 3

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http://www.wavecrest.net

            

March Madness Starts This Week! – Estimated $1.9 billion Lost for Every Unproductive Hour

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

This week is the beginning of one of the most popular events of the year… March Madness!  An exciting month for sports fans everywhere!

The exMarch Madnesscitement during the tournament is addictive! Employees have office pools and discuss the games all through the day. The trouble with March Madness? It occurs during the work day. “An average of 10.7 million people watched March Madness games in 2013, the most since 1994.” During this time, an organization does need to worry.

Management needs to be concerned about low productivity, “An MSN poll in 2012 found that 56% of respondents, equivalent to 77.1 million employees, planned to devote at least one hour to March Madness. Using those figures, the damages rise to $1.9 billion for every unproductive hour.” IT, as well as management, needs to worry about the risk of lower bandwidth for critical business operations, “Turner Sports, which operates the NCAA’s website, said 6.8 million unique visitors watched games online during the first week of last year’s tournament. Visitors spent an average of 1 hour and 51 minutes online each time they opened a stream.” These disruptions can cause major problems with the normal operations of any business.

March Madness begins March 18th and runs through the beginning of April. Revisit your organization’s AUP and let your employees know the negative impact their actions could have on the organization.

It is a good time to think seriously about making one of Wavecrest Computing’s CyBlock Advanced Web Security solutions a priority. Whether you are thinking you would like to block all access to sports, or thinking you would like to allow some time for your employees to enjoy March Madness while maintaining control over crucial business operations. CyBlock Advanced Web Security solutions can do both. CyBlock can easily block sports or, just as easily, allow for filtering by time frame. Implement flexible filtering by day, hour, or half hour while controlling bandwidth, threat protection, and enforcing your AUP in an easy to manage interface. With deployments options of CyBlock Cloud with the optional CyBlock Mobile Security App, CyBlock Software, CyBlock ISA/TMG, or CyBlock Appliance, Wavecrest can help you find the solution that you need now.  Many of these options can be up and running the day you purchase. Do not wait until the Final Four’s final basket!

 

*Excerpts from Foxbusiness.com, March Madness Ready to Distract Workers Nationwide, By Matthew Rocco Published March 11, 2014

What employers need to know about online holiday shopping

Monday, November 19th, 2012

It’s that time of year again. Christmas is coming, and it’s time to find the best deals and research the best products. And where does everyone go these days to find the deals and do their product research?  You guessed it. The Internet.  Should employers be concerned with this? Absolutely!  Online shopping results in significant productivity losses, excessive bandwidth usage and serious threats to cybersecurity.

Lost productivity can mean big bucks for your company. A recent study by Comscore found that 50% of all online holiday purchases occur during working hours. For the companies in the study, the typical productivity loss during the short holiday season averages $15,000.

Adding insult to injury, the additional traffic will lead to network slowdowns due to significant increases in bandwidth usage. Just as they did in previous years, online retailers are now preparing bandwidth-hogging promotional videos to help sell their products. Remember last year?  On Cyber Monday 2011, video views increased by 897 percent over the previous year. And now the number of views this coming Cyber Monday are expected to exceed last year’s. So, it is critical to prevent vital bandwidth from being consumed by non-productive Web-use.

Contributing to the danger, hackers and identity thieves are very aware of these online shopping patterns. They are fully prepared to deceive online holiday shoppers with very appealing schemes – “deals” that require them to click a link to special discount or filling in personal information before they can get the deal. These acts can lead to malware infection or pose significant risks to your organization’s network and sensitive data.

The peak period for all these holiday-related problems is coming soon. The Comscore study tells us that 80% of all annual online purchases occur between Nov 26th (CyBer Monday) and Dec 14th.  So now is a good time to remind your employees of your organization’s Web-use policy and make sure you have the right protections in place.

Dennis McCabe, President of Wavecrest Computing, recommends that companies monitor and/or filter employee Web-use to better protect themselves from lost productivity, excessive bandwidth usage and security threats. His company is ready to help them do this.  Easy to use and priced to fit any budget, Wavecrest products are tailored to address all aspects of Web-use management reliably and cost-effectively.

About Wavecrest

Since 1996, Wavecrest Computing has developed, marketed, and supported a spectrum of innovative Internet usage monitoring, analysis, filtering, and reporting solutions. Their products help all types of organizations manage employees’ online activities, ensure compliance with acceptable use policies, preclude legal liability and prevent bandwidth abuse. Founded 15 years ago, their client base has grown to more than 3,000 organizations, including many prominent Fortune 500 companies and high-profile government agencies.

Monitoring Internet Usage … From the IT Department

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

During July, August, and September of 2011, Commtouch assessed categories of Web sites most likely to be home to malware, below are the top ranking offenders.  The Portals category includes those sites offering free hosting which are often abused to publish malware and phishing content or will redirect to sites with this content.

What were the most-visited categories by your employees during 2011?

Are you currently monitoring and/or blocking the existing Spyware/Malicious, Phishing/Fraud, Public Proxy, and Hacking categories to help protect your network?

Source: Commtouch

In today’s wired workplace, internet security and bandwidth consumption are top concerns for IT professionals while employee productivity and legal liability ail management and HR professionals.  As a major contributor to the Web-use management effort, IT typically becomes deeply involved in planning, testing, selecting, installing, and administering Internet monitoring software.  With the different departments playing a role in deciding on the best product to fit their vast needs, most are left without a solution.  Fortunately, Wavecrest’s products have been reviewed by our customers as meeting each role’s needs most effectively, offering manager-ready, easy-to-interpret reports that can be accessed without the IT personnel in addition to providing a robust, truly scalable IT-friendly remedy.

With Wavecrest Computing, customers have the insight needed to proactively monitor / block the notorious malicious sites based on custom categories, the Wavecrest Control List, and a real-time deep packet analysis process.  Plus, our 19 comprehensive templates provide a variety of summarized and detailed Web-use activity reports on users, groups, categories, sites, acceptability ratings, and bandwidth consumption.  Conveniently import your current Web Use Policy to easily customize or classify categories, implement abuse thresholding, and monitor employee productivity while our Administrator and Operator Accounts allow for non-IT personnel to create and obtain their role-specific reports.

While serving a diverse mixture of commercial businesses, industrial firms, government agencies, military units, educational institutions, and non-profit organizations since 1996, our products continue to present the most up-to-date, proactive coverage in line with the one factor that underlies all Web-use management issues, human online activity. Wavecrest’s managers and developers understand human resource management well and we use that knowledge to develop features that prevent productivity losses, legal liability problems, network issues, and unnecessary costs.

Online Holiday Shopping Can Cost Your Business More Than Time

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

Online Shopping Risks

Cyber Monday is no more – in an uncertain economy, post-Thanksgiving online holiday shopping has increased since coined in 2005 and now lasts for one month with more than 50% of all online spending taking place during working hours1.  What does this mean for your business?  A large decrease in employee productivity, a boost in bandwidth consumption, and one of the most popular times for cybercriminals to attack your secure data.

Lost productivity can mean big bucks for your company, reducing employee output to a mere 60%2.  A survey by CareerBuilder states that more than half of the 4,000 respondents polled intend on shopping online while at work with one third of those planning for more than one hour each day, in addition to the two typical hours daily already reported by respondents (time excludes lunch hour and scheduled breaks).  If you do not have a Web-use policy or Internet Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) in place, one is necessary to help report, monitor, and prevent employee Internet abuse in addition to protecting your company from legal liability.

Downloading malware is another risk as employees use the Internet for personal reasons. Spyware and malicious code are big threats to company networks as they can consume bandwidth and compromise security.  Recent studies show that company networks are being infected with spyware and malicious code most often through employees surfing the Web; with the holidays increasing that risk, these threats make it imperative for companies to enforce an AUP to protect their networks. Wavecrest Computing suggests that companies monitor and/or filter employee Web use in order to better protect themselves from security threats. In addition to the inherent risks associated with hacking your online security – loss of company reputation, destruction of company data, and the downtime employees face while systems are restored – the costs to mitigate attacks are extraordinary and rising each year.  This year, U.S. companies are expected to spend more than triple the costs spent in 20063.

To ensure these threats do not happen to your company this holiday season, run through our checklist and remember to check it twice!

  • Install all applicable system and program updates to avoid malware from infiltrating any system frailty that could have easily been patched with an update.
  • Create a Web usage policy and clearly communicate it to your employees.
  • Be cautious prior to clicking on links to different websites particularly those found on social networking sites as they’re often a hotspot for malware.
  • Avoid the use of pirated / illegal software as many contain malware.
  • Never open email attachments from unknown senders and make sure to scan attachments you do decide to download.
  • Make steps to consistently back up your computer in the case that malware wipes your hard drive clean.
  • Monitor servers and security devices 24x7x365 for security issues and require preventative actions be taken on security threats in real time – this is where we come in!

CyBlock can be set up to block Web access by categories and by hour so employees can access shopping sites on their lunch break or after hours. This approach can help sustain morale while minimizing the risks associated with online shopping.  With Cyfin, you can monitor employees’ Web use to ensure that Web-use policies are followed or that unwanted spyware or malware is not downloaded as a result.  Let us guide you to a safer, more reliable, robust security solution with exceptional support at an unbeatable price!

Sources:

1http://blog.comscore.com/2011/11/cyber_monday_work_computers.html

2 http://www.wavecrest.net/editorial/costsavings.html

3http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2011/technology/1107/gallery.cyber_security_costs/index.html?iid=EL

 

Best Practices for Monitoring Employee Computer Use

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

We recently came across “Best Practices Regarding Employee Computer Use,” written by Dandford Grant, a partner at Stafford Frey Cooper law firm, and thought it could be a great resource for Wavecrest customers and others thinking about implementing a filtering or monitoring solution. The paper discusses employee privacy rights, monitoring and surveillance of employees, and recommended policies & practices. It also gives examples of past legal cases and their rulings.  Below are a few highlights and good points to take away from the paper.

  • “In most situations, a certain amount of monitoring is good business and may be required.”
  • An employer should inform employees that Internet and email use will be monitored.
  • “Monitoring should be fair and consistent,” i.e., run and review the same reports regularly and dig deeper when the data warrants it.
  • Most importantly, communicate with employees frequently about your organization’s acceptable use policy and best practices when using email and Internet sites, such as social networks, blogging, etc.

Web Use in the Workplace: Risks and Solutions

Friday, October 15th, 2010

Approximately 20% of personal Internet use at work poses potential threats to the employer. Web access in the workplace can be a valuable business tool, but it also carries significant risks. Check out our presentation that discusses the risks associated with Web use and why monitoring and filtering helps mitigate those risks.

 

Cut Costs with Wavecrest’s Internet Filtering, Monitoring and Reporting Products

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

It has always been important to know that your company’s resources are being used properly and to the best of their capability.  Businesses want to ensure that their employees are being productive and not wasting the organization’s time and resources.

Internet access is one of those resources that can easily be abused, costing an organization time and money. Internet filtering and/or monitoring with one of Wavecrest’s Cyfin or CyBlock products can help preclude or drive down costs in at least four areas: productivity, bandwidth, legal liability and security.

1. Productivity

  • The average worker admits to frittering away 2.09 hours per 8-hour workday, not including lunch and scheduled break-time (America Online and Salary.com survey, 2006).
  • The average employee costs a company $29.71 per hour (including salary, overhead costs, benefits, payroll taxes, etc.) —- United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics — March 2010.
  • Lost productivity costs the company $59.42 per day per employee (2 hrs x $29.71).
  • Average employee works 240 days per year.
  • Yearly loss per employee is $14,260.80  (240 x $59.42)
  • Loss per 1000 employees is $14,260,800 per year.
  • Average cost for a Wavecrest Internet filtering or monitoring product with a 1000-employee license is $3,500 per year ($3.50 per user).

Conclusion:  Cost of a Wavecrest license is less than three tenths of one percent of the cost of lost productivity. A well-communicated Web-use policy, coupled with an effective monitoring product, greatly increases productivity in the workplace.

2.  Bandwidth

Reliable studies indicate that as much as 70% of a company’s bandwidth is being consumed by non-productive pursuits. Activities such as online video, audio streaming, downloading movies or MP3’s are especially damaging.  It is quite clear that eliminating or significantly reducing bandwidth abuse can improve network performance and preclude or decelerate the need for organizations to support increased bandwidth use.

3.  Legal Liability

Web-related legal costs typically result from employees visiting pornography sites.  Many studies show this to be a serious problem. In fact, according to research by Nielsen Online in October 2008, one quarter of employees who use the Internet visit porn sites during the workday.  Hits to porn sites are higher during office hours than at any other time of day, according to M.J. McMahon, publisher of AVN Online magazine, which tracks the adult video industry.

This type of activity puts the employer at serious risk of being sued by other workers who are offended or upset by being exposed to pornographic images. Such suits usually take the form of sexual harassment or hostile workplace litigation and can be very costly in terms of damage to reputation as well as legal costs.

4.  Security

Studies show that approximately twenty percent of personal use of the Internet by employees involves activities that pose potential threats to employer network security. Examples include file sharing, the use of malicious code, spyware and more. Like bandwidth abuse, the associated costs are difficult to quantify, but such activities can easily result in network disruptions or slowdowns and/or loss or compromise of proprietary data; these all come with a cost.