Are you leaving your small business Web-use security door open?

Monday, May 15th, 2017

 

There is so much to be concerned with when running a small business. Economic uncertainty, the cost of health insurance benefits, regulatory burdens, keeping mission-critical operations running–all add up to a stressful experience. Now security concerns include more than just locking the doors; it means everything digital too. And the risks? With ransomware, phishing, insider threats, unsanctioned cloud apps, BYOD . . . lets just say, the Internet usage risks are probably even higher than the front door being left open . . . wide open.

Many small and midsized businesses (SMBs) are without full-time IT departments or even full-time IT personnel, making them a prime target for breaches. But SMBs tend to think they don’t have the resources to handle this type of security, whether it be the financial consideration, personnel needed, or when hardware is preferred, limited space constraints. Since hackers know this, SMBs have to be proactive when it comes to Web-use security–nowadays, even more so than corporations.

The connection between the human and the Internet is a weak link, making it one of the leading access points into a system for a hacker. Whether it’s from the employee clicking a Web link in an e-mail, clicking a malicious ad, or sharing company information with a cloud service, make sure to protect the business by managing that employee-Internet connection. Find a solution that allows you to easily and proactively monitor and secure your employees’ Web activity. Your business is unique–finding a way to solve these issues and concerns will take a unique solution.

A few tips for your Web-use security solution search:

  1. Find a vendor who will spend the time with you. The cyber world has its own language. It’s important to have a human being on the other end of the phone during the sales process, in customer service, and when you need technical support . . . yup, they still have human beings in technical support . . . go figure! Get with a company who wants to talk to you!
  2. Of course, it doesn’t help if that vendor doesn’t have what you need so make sure you list the top security priorities for your business. Do you want to filter access to certain Web sites or categories such as social media, or do you want to limit time that an employee may spend on one site? Are you are more concerned with your guest Wi-Fi and BYOD or throttling bandwidth use? Don’t get sold on something that doesn’t meet at least your primary concerns. One solution does not always fit all . . . in today’s cybersecurity world you need to focus on your specific business concerns. Just because an expensive, large scale, all-in-one network security solution or firewall has a Web-use add-on tool does not mean it will give you the pertinent, granular detail and control that you need to protect your mission-critical operations.
  3. Ask questions. The vendor should understand that you excel at what you do, not what they do. Don’t be intimidated by the security subject. Even those of us in this business spend a lot of time keeping up with the fast pace of cybersecurity. No question is unnecessary. If you think about it, then it is important to you and should be to the vendor too. Refer to Tip #1!
  4. Last tip for today . . . solutions come in many shapes and sizes. Don’t settle for something that doesn’t fit your business. Your business is special and unique. Your solution should fit and work in your environment without you constantly having to justify it and make it fit in.

Wavecrest can, and wants to, help you–with CyBlock Mini Appliance, specially designed for small businesses, remote offices, and limited space environments.

CyBlock Mini Appliance is an employee Internet-use security hardware solution that is not only the size of a wireless hub but is also economically priced. You gain an easy-to-setup, turnkey Web activity gateway with advanced filtering and monitoring capability, manual or automatic delivery of detailed, interactive reports, real-time monitoring by user, group, or category, the ability to easily manage BYOD, guest Wi-Fi networks, cloud services, and bandwidth use–all with included U.S.-based Technical Support.

Wavecrest also provides CyBlock Web security solutions in other shapes and sizes! Find out more about our other CyBlock deployments: Appliance, Hybrid, Cloud, and Software. As a customer-centric company, Wavecrest focuses on the needs of each customer. Let us help secure your business with a solution that fits every business size, type, and configuration.

About Wavecrest

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!

Tuesday, 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.

Find your bandwidth hogs and throttle them.

Wednesday, 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.

Time for a change . . . for the better.

Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

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Changes are finally showing at Forcepoint since the Raytheon acquisition of Websense. We know Websense customers are feeling some pinch this year since the Raytheon policies are now kicking in. Support or customer service people are harder to get a hold of. When renewal time comes around, the pricing, contract terms, and even the product lines have changed, and more.

Hesitate before you sign on again. Why should you pay extra for add-ons that should already be included in a Web-use security solution, like SSL inspection and U.S.-based technical support? Or why should you pay for a cloud solution that does not have the reporting detail that makes it a useful tracking or investigative tool? Research your options. It may well be time for your own change — to a stable, customer-centric Web-use security solution vendor like Wavecrest Computing.

Wavecrest has cost-effective, comprehensive, agile, and reliable solutions for your employee Web-use security and analytics needs, ranging from software and hardware deployments to cloud and hybrid deployments–all with SSL inspection, forensic-level reporting detail, and U.S.-based technical support included. No matter your business size, industry, or distributed workforce, Wavecrest has an easy-to-setup and easy-to-manage solution for you. Leave the high prices and complicated contractual terms, hidden fees for technical support or product updates, and all the confusion behind. 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 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. Proud GSA contract holder for over 16 years and counting. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit https://www.wavecrest.net.

Always question the “all-in-one solution” solution.

Thursday, July 14th, 2016

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Surveys and statistics still tell us that one of the most important things a business can do is see what is going on within their business. In the past, a business owner or manager could visually see productivity, equipment misuse, or when they were vandalized. Now we rely on digital devices and clouds to handle so much of how our business is run that it is impossible to rely on hands-on owners or managers to see any issues.

When you did your security research, you were most likely reminded that one device or solution will not solve everything. The main takeaway from those reminders–be leery of the product that says it will. Most businesses, big or small, need layers of solutions to truly protect their assets. The problem that is now arising is that big box companies are selling what they like to call an all-in-one solution. This is a fallacy. One solution is not going to cover all your threats from outside or inside the company. They may offer some version of a lot of different things, but we all know that businesses have focused goals. For many of the larger companies, it is to sell large hardware packages such as a firewall that comes with add-ons.

Okay, so we should all know . . . you need a firewall! But when they tell you to give up your focused URL filtering reports because they have one built-in, think twice before you sign on thinking you are getting the same capabilities. They do not specialize in these included or add-on features. The feature they provide will give you a minimal amount of dry, flat, and unresponsive tools. Yes, you have their firewall and that is a good thing, but question whether you can really use what they provide for the security beyond firewall functionality. Today, security is not just about the firewall.

Things to always check for when reviewing included or add-on solutions:

  • Drill-down, forensic-level reporting detail.
  • Interactive features by user, group, category, etc.
  • Manager portal to get managers the information then need without having to schedule time for IT.
  • Comprehensive and current URL categories, including designated cloud services.

Do not believe you have to settle for what is included in your all-in-one package. Wavecrest Computing’s advanced employee Web-use monitoring & analytics solution, Cyfin, will provide clear, detailed, and interactive reporting with automatic log file analysis and detection to work with virtually any gateway device and log file format including Palo Alto, Check Point, Forcepoint (Websense), SonicWALL, WatchGuard, and more.

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.

CyBlock Cloud Services Right Here on the Space Coast

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015
Cloud-Services

Wavecrest Computing, a leading provider of advanced Web security and Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) solutions, introduces a new cloud services location right here on the Space Coast.

As a successful Space Coast-based business since 1996, Wavecrest is proud to help local businesses keep mission-critical cloud service applications, and more, running smoothly and securely, on or off premises, with CyBlock Cloud service now located within TerraCom Direct’s secure, Tier 3 purpose-built facility in Melbourne.

“The ability to centrally manage policies and activities is crucial for enterprises that want to make strategic use of cloud services while still controlling their users’ activities. End users, MSPs, and resellers now have the opportunity to manage their cloud services locally, with professionals from their community and within an environment that is comprehensive and secure. In today’s world, it is almost impossible to find experts in a company’s own backyard.” Dennis McCabe, CEO, Wavecrest Computing.

Wavecrest’s CyBlock Cloud and CyBlock Hybrid provide security policy enforcement points placed between cloud service users and cloud applications to combine and interject enterprise security policies as the cloud-based resources are accessed. These points provide cloud service visibility, threat prevention, data protection, and regulatory compliance by finding anomalies, user activity, or threats, such as unsanctioned cloud services use, unnecessary data sprawl, and underused or unused cloud services. CyBlock provides data loss protection, analytics of usage behaviors, automated alerting and reporting, and easy-to-use policy management tools including filtering and bandwidth management.

CyBlock is designed to fit all types and sizes of businesses. End users will see efficiency and productivity increase while protecting the company’s interests and network data. MSPs will find a proactive and agile Cloud Access Security Broker solution that will provide the visibility and control to take care of clients with minimal time and effort. Increase profits, growth, and service quality while knowing that a local team of experts is here to help. Find out more at www.wavecrest.net.

About Wavecrest Computing

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. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit http://www.wavecrest.net.

The Tip of the Spear . . . Phishing

Monday, November 16th, 2015

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Spear phishing has become a leading way hackers gain access to business systems and data. They use natural human familiarity as the weakness. You receive an e-mail from an executive within your company. Will you take the time to second guess the sender? Will you hesitate clicking a link or an attachment that is deemed important by this person? Likely not. Even those who know the risks and precautions may easily fall victim to this type of hack. It thrives on the information that is already available to the hacker. They find out enough about you to make the e-mail not only look like it is from someone you know, but also include information within the e-mail that will reinforce this familiarity, such as referring to a project or another team member.

For a business to try and fight against this type of hack, employee communication is important. In 2014, 56% of those polled by Dark Reading cited “lack of employee awareness” as the most dangerous social engineering threat to organizations. Consistent training and constant communication will give employees the tools to proactively question an e-mail they receive.

Avoiding the most obvious risk should be lesson number one. No matter who the e-mail is from, even the CEO of the company, make sure employees know not to give out information such as passwords or business account numbers. They should question and verify the e-mail when this type of information is requested at any time. You can no longer trust an obvious phishing sign like a request from a foreign national looking for money. Spear phishing takes the extra effort to look past the initial information in the e-mail into the overall intention.

As always, make sure your employees know to think before clicking a URL or downloading any files. Today, malicious attachments come in all types, not just .exe files, and URLs may lead them to a Web site that looks legit but is actually a phishing site that will then request confidential information, such as logon credentials. It is easy to verify a domain or run a scan on an attachment, so users should know the necessary steps of verification.

Lastly, recommend that your company take precautions when it comes to cybersecurity. Instead of large, all-in-one product add-on tools that just give you a small, top-level view of activity, recommend that your company use the most targeted security tools available. To mitigate security risks, this should include the ability to proactively block malicious URLs, discover and analyze Shadow IT and cloud services, and supply comprehensive drill-down reporting on Web-access activity for your entire distributed workforce.

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. FREE bandwidth audit available!

CyBlock Cloud service is now in a service location near you!

Monday, October 19th, 2015

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We are excited to announce that we are expanding our reach! We have always prided ourselves on providing premium service to our customers no matter where they are located but now, with our new Canada location and U.K. location, we can bring you improved and efficient access to CyBlock Cloud and CyBlock Hybrid services! Start covering your remote users or satellite offices, or move all your users to CyBlock Cloud! No matter what type of distributed workforce you have, we can help.

CyBlock Cloud provides all the agile and comprehensive capabilities of CyBlock with filtering, reporting, cloud services management, real-time monitoring, bandwidth management, threat protection, and more, all in a deployment requiring no hardware or software to buy and install, and no maintenance!

CyBlock Hybrid will give you coverage for your remote users and satellite offices while your main office is covered with an on-site CyBlock Software installation, both managed with one convenient administration console.

Find out more about our CyBlock Cloud and Hybrid deployments, and our new Canada and U.K. service locations by calling 321-953-5351, Ext. 3. Request a FREE TRIAL today!!

World Cup 2014 is kicking off. Is your network ready?

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

fifa-world-cup-2014-brazil-logoThe 2014 FIFA World Cup games begin today and will run until July 13. Since the broadcast of the last World Cup in 2010, the number of Americans who have watched, attended, or listened to a major soccer match has increased by 32%. If most of your employees start streaming the games or highlights simultaneously, can your Internet bandwidth sustain the demand? 42% of IT professionals state that popular events impact their network. How many simultaneous users watching game highlights does it take to saturate your bandwidth? Just 2 streaming users result in a 1 megabit-per-second download, while 17 users equal a huge 10 megabits per second. The Internet bandwidth is quickly overwhelmed. Given the time difference with Brazil, most of the 64 matches will be played during U.S. office hours, and streaming video could deal a major blow to corporate network and application performance. When the first match of the day kicks off, smartphones, tablets, and laptops will be streaming footage live from offices around the U.S.

In addition to the major spike in bandwidth usage, World Cup 2014 malware sites are out there! According to a recent survey from Osterman research, some kind of malware has infiltrated 74% of organizations via the Web increasing security risks. Another major revenue loss for companies is lost productivity. The World Cup 2014 is 27 days, 66 matches, and a total of 99 hours average wages lost per hour each day.

Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products and services help all types of organizations manage and control employee Web activity.Cyfin and CyBlock products do this by monitoring, filtering, and bandwidth throttling employees’ Web use, and reporting on the activity by content categories, e.g., sports, social networking, games, and others. Of particular note, with regard to the World Cup, CyBlock products can be set up to block Web access by categories and by half hour so employees can access sports sites on their lunch break or after hours. This approach can help sustain morale while minimizing lost productivity and bandwidth associated with the World Cup.

Reasons Customers Continuously Choose Wavecrest Include Pricing, ROI and Flexibility.

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

Wavecrest Computing has been providing the best-of- breed Web security and Web forensic solutions since 1996. Continuously delivering the highest quality products at the most competitive pricing has been pivotal to our longevity. We have the best and most loyal customer base in the industry. The fact is, we care about the success of each and every customer. If you are still not convinced, see what one of our loyal customers has to say for themselves.

“Our IT and Management team evaluated several products that were considered “tops” in the web monitoring field.  Our evaluation included hardware appliances and software based systems as well as free to expensive versions.  We decided upon the Wavecrest Cyblock Appliance for several reasons which included Pricing, ROI and Flexibility.  We discovered that the Cyfin Reporter was also just as flexible providing us with the details needed to make adjustments to our Policies and Bandwidth as well as increasing employee’s productivity.”

— Allen Lochamy, Atlanta Bonded Warehouse, Atlanta, GA