Security Risks for the IT Industry and How to Manage them Effectively

Nov 2020 | Article

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Summary: Organisations of all sizes have made their operations and customer services more efficient with digital tools. Conversely, evolving online technologies have also brought new challenges and risks for them. Data breaches and ransomware attacks can target any enterprise at unexpected moments. Tata Tele Business Services understands such concerns and helps its clients to deploy dynamic and cost-effective cybersecurity solutions in the hyper-connected business environment.

“It is only when they go wrong that machines remind you how powerful they are.” ~ Clive James

In the digital and information age, the evolution of technology is marked by both opportunities and challenges. We are at an inflexion point where businesses that were already entwined with the Internet are racing towards the Internet of Things (IoT), automation, Big Data and Artificial Intelligence (AI). However, as technology brings benefits of time-savings, cost-efficacy and flexibility, it has also become a source of new threats. The IT companies that devise tech-enabled customised solutions for other industries are also vulnerable to data thefts and cyber-attack vectors such as botnets, malware and ransomware.

Cognizant, one of the US’s largest multinational companies, confirmed that it was hit by a ransomware attack called Maze in April 2020. Maze not only spreads across a network to infect and lock every computer in its path but also moves the data to the attackers’ servers where it is held for ransom.
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While Cognizant is a Fortune 500 company with a large IT team to remediate such concerns, small and medium enterprises in the IT sector need to stay alert to the gravity of such issues. The notion that “there is not much to steal” at a smaller company is not in sync with cybersecurity best practices. Organisations need to understand that hackers and cybercriminals are not after the size of any business but the data that it holds. This could be customer information, credit card details or valuable intellectual property.

Why is the IT sector a goldmine for cybercriminals?

IT companies rely heavily on digital technologies and online tools to serve their clients. They expose themselves to cyber risks through the very applications and systems they use. Hackers also take advantage of loopholes such as inadequate budget to deploy comprehensive security solutions, lack of risk awareness, failure to secure endpoints, employees untrained in cybersecurity practices and the increasing interconnections between companies through cloud platforms.
Small to mid-sized IT enterprises have also become more attractive to cybercriminals because many of them are viewed as gateways to bigger and more lucrative targets. These companies may be the vendors, contractors or business partners of larger organisations and have special access to their networks and databases. If their own devices and networks are insecure, such accounts can be compromised.

Combating Cyber Threats with Managed Solutions

Tata Tele Business Services (TTBS) knows that addressing cyber threats needs a multi-disciplinary approach spanning software, hardware, policies and people. These must work in unison to prevent attacks on devices and networks. Despite different measures, if an attack occurs, there should be ways to minimise its impact.
To make cybersecurity simpler and cost-effective for businesses, TTBS offers a range of cloud-based managed solutions:

Endpoint Security

Endpoint security is essential in an age when the employees of IT companies are increasingly working from home. It secures networks that are remotely connected to client devices. The Endpoint Security by TTBS protects business networks from malware, malicious scripts and memory-based threats. It also identifies and impedes the threats from unidentified apps. The solution discovers cyber threats in real-time and enables instant patch management, making the response to security incidents dynamic.

The multi-layered security of this cloud-hosted tool safeguards browsing through web portals, checking emails and sharing content through detachable hard drives.

Endpoint Security brings more than ten security features that include antivirus, anti-spyware, anti-ransomware, firewall, HTTPS web protection, URL filtering, data loss prevention and full disk encryption. It works effectively on all devices using Windows, iOS and Android operating systems. Thanks to the cloud-based infrastructure, the solution is easy to install and scale. It does not generate any performance overheads or cause conflicts with the legit software and applications used by business teams.

While using this endpoint security tool, IT administrators also get apprised of the origin and intensity of threats that attempted to break into their devices and network. Reports, notifications and alerts are delivered on a user-friendly web interface. The zero-CapEx and pay-per-use model of Endpoint Security makes it a good value proposition for companies of any size.

Email Security

Emails can bring cyber threats of all kinds right on to the desktop of a user. Unintentional clicks on malicious links or files brought by them can result in disastrous malware infections and ransomware attacks on the device and the connected network.
To protect the email usage for IT organisations, TTBS provides its zero-CapEx Email Security solution. This hosted service works for all platforms such as Microsoft Outlook, Exchange, Office 365. It also secures the usage of Gmail and business email domains at on-premise servers.
Email Security’s quick detection, analysis, evaluation and blockage of cyber threats are attributed to FirstWave Cloud Technology’s ESP™’s email software technology, Cisco-based ESA/IronPort, and Advanced Malware Protection (AMP) technologies.

In addition to safeguarding devices from viruses, spyware and malware, Email Security also helps businesses to eliminate spam from their mailboxes. The more advanced features of this solution identify and stop complex pushy threats, including spear-phishing, whaling, typo domain and spoofing attacks.

While using the TTBS Email Security, IT organisations can also add a seal of authenticity in their correspondence. It provides outbound domain keys identified mail (DKIM) assistance to insert the sender’s digital signature with a message.

With inbuilt attributes for data loss prevention, advanced content control, assured disaster recovery and 32 days trace replay, Email Security is a resourceful security tool to thwart the risks posed by the complex cyber environment.

For simple management and direct visibility into the threats that tried to attack a device, this cloud solution offers role-based controls and analytics platform. Finally, TTBS’ Email Security is backed by 100% uptime on a redundant and fault-tolerant infrastructure.

Multifactor Authentication

Working with digital technologies, IT players understand that cybercriminals have already bypassed several security measures. It is not difficult for them to hack accounts that have simple usernames and passwords.

Multifactor authentication (MFA) becomes a necessity in times when the usage of cloud apps and social media is common for work. The MFA process increases the security of such accounts by bringing in more than one verification method to ensure that a user logging into the protected account is genuine. Based on Cisco Duo Security, the hosted MFA solution provided by TTBS has a zero-trust security model for authentic access to the apps and databases stored on a device. Only authorised personnel can then use the enterprise tools and make new entries or changes to the secured systems.
Like other cloud solutions, the TTBS MFA can be easily installed and provides various authentication methods allowing users to choose the ones that best fit into their work. These include Universal 2nd Factor (U2F) standards, soft or hard tokens, or push authentications.
The solution works quietly without obstructing enterprise apps on the underlying device. It can also be scaled easily. Administrators can set up additional policies tailored for compliance regulations and the standard operating procedures of each unit in the company.

Virtual Firewall

With data, apps and workloads of businesses increasingly moving to virtual environments, physical firewalls are losing their effectiveness. They are also difficult to manage because stringent settings can interfere with the working of genuine enterprise apps, and laxity beyond a level increases the risk of cyberattacks.
When firewalls are not configured correctly, workers may have a false sense of security, leaving malicious content to infect a device.
TTBS has resolved these issues for its clients with the Virtual Firewall solution, which is based on the industry-leading Palo Alto Networks firewall technology and secures all wired and wireless devices. As a cloud solution, it just needs data connectivity and can work from any location to guard devices from malicious traffic.
Its threat-intelligence-based filtering, coupled with accelerated response time, makes it easy to block content from spurious and harmful web domains.
In combating threats, the Virtual Firewall does not cause any lag on the devices. It also provides a simple web interface to review and analyse the security actions. The pay-per-use billing system and ease of scalability are other advantages of this cloud security tool.

Web Security

IT companies can also choose the Web Security service delivered by TTBS – it helps them to stay compliant in their agreements with partner firms by providing comprehensive security to the devices used by their employees at any location.
The solution employs DNS technology devised by Cisco Talos Intelligence and Cisco Advanced Malware Protection (AMP). It is a strong shield against the cyber threats that taint the public cloud environment. Web Security has advanced threat detection capabilities to analyse the intent of all web requests, URLs and files reaching a device and network. It works in real-time to determine if they are safe, dicey or hazardous. It appropriately allows the content and links for normal work processes, or blocks them, or forwards them for deeper analysis.
This hosted solution has multiple security features that include web filtering, collective security intelligence, portal reporting and category-based URL filtering. It is a scalable, cost-effective and reliable online security tool for any IT company that must eliminate any cyber threat before it touches the endpoints of business LAN.

Cybersecurity for the mobile and agile workforce

The “anytime, anywhere” flexibility had already become the mantra of today’s workforce even before the COVID pandemic struck the world.

Whether your employees are in the office, at home or travelling, they can stay productive by using a variety of wireless devices, collaboration apps and cloud computing. However, the expansive reach of IT has also exposed them to more online attacks and threats.

The longer you wait to deploy cybersecurity measures, the more enticing and vulnerable your business databases become to cybercriminals. By implementing future-ready cloud security solutions now, you can build a stronger and safer work environment conducive to your business growth. And that’s where TTBS helps your organisation.

To know more about our products and solutions, call us at 1800-266-1800.

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