Archive for July, 2015

3 Ways Your Company Can Improve Its IT Compliance Instantly

Written by Tiffiny Hladczuk. Posted in ITS Blog

it compliance

Across today’s corporate landscape, a significant number of companies remain concerned about their information technology (IT) systems’ fulfillment of compliance program requirements.

In fact, in a recent survey, a mere 32% of chief operating officers reported feeling confident or very confident in their IT systems, the Wall Street Journal reported on June 29.

These days, the biggest IT compliance mandates include PCI, HIPAA and FISMA. These mandates require businesses and companies to protect, track and control all access to sensitive data, including employees’ personal information.

It can be easy to think that this form of network security management isn’t that important to your company’s success. However, when a HIPAA compliance breach of 500 records or less can result in a stunning fine of $50,000 or more, your company can’t afford to let its IT system’s compliance take a backseat to other priorities.

Could your company need to make improvements to its IT systems’ compliance to current compliance mandates like PCI, HIPAA and FISMA? Find out with this list of the three best ways your company can give its IT compliance a boost:

Educate your employees
Did you know that your own employees are often some of the biggest threats to your company’s IT compliance? Believe it or not, but between 75 and 80% of all malicious cyber attacks actually come from within an organization. Because of this, maintaining your IT infrastructure with security auditing, managed IT support services and penetration testing is absolutely vital.

Automate whenever possible
Automating your IT systems’ everyday functions is key to reducing occurrences of human error and keeping your company’s data safe. With automation, your computer systems can collect data automatically and perform correlations, analysis and other assessments securely and effectively.

Remain vigilant against third-party apps
One of the biggest compliance issues facing companies today is the third-party app. These unseen devices and apps, most often used by end users looking for faster solutions, can ultimately weaken your IT infrastructure and make it vulnerable. To solve this, it’s generally recommended to enact modern enterprise cloud solutions.

Do you agree with this list? Have any other questions about the types of IT consulting and IT project management services we offer? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

Harvard Data Breach Leaks Information From 8 Colleges and Administrations

Written by Tiffiny Hladczuk. Posted in ITS Blog

network security systems

Last month, Harvard University revealed that a data breach had occurred to two of its internal IT systems, impacting eight of its various colleges and administrative departments in the process.

According to a July 2 Fortune article, the Ivy League university first discovered its network security systems had been breached on June 19. The colleges and administrations hit by the breach include the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard Divinity School, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Central Administration, the Graduate School of Design, Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Despite this, the Harvard Kennedy School, as well as the university’s business, law, medicine and dental schools, so far appear to be untouched by the network security systems‘ breach.

Harvard officials stated that the breach hasn’t revealed any research data or personal information, TechCrunchreported. However, the university advises anyone associated with the affected groups to change their password to the Harvard network login. In the near future, Harvard will require an additional password change for added security. When 80% of all data breaches come as a result of weak passwords, this is hardly surprising.

“Password changes will be required again at a later time as the University takes further steps to enhance security,” Provost Alan Garber and executive vice president Katie Lapp said in a letter to the university community.

Harvard University is far from being the only large organization to experience compromised network security systems over recent years. Throughout the last six years alone, the U.S. government saw a staggering 680% increase in the number of cyber attacks it experienced. Additionally, between 75% and 80% of all malicious cyber attacks originate from within an organization.

Even so, it will be vital for Harvard’s IT department to seek out heightened managed IT support services, onsite computer services or the help of qualified network security specialists to prevent a similar data breach from taking place.

What are your thoughts on the Harvard data breach? Have any other questions for us about the importance of network security management? Let us know by leaving a comment below.