remotely monitoring

Looking In at the Benefits of Remotely Monitoring Your Business’ Technology

For small businesses with limited budgets and workforces, getting the type of maintenance needed to keep complicated pieces of machinery and technology in tip-top shape seems like a tall order. Sometimes it might be a budgetary issue, where it costs too much to hire in-house staff to handle this burden. Other times it might seem like you just can’t find any talent in your location. Thanks to modern technology—remote monitoring and management technology, in particular—you are no longer stuck by these limitations

We would be poor technology consultants if we told you that not having the resources to properly care for your technology is a good excuse. Thanks to remote technology, this type of maintenance is easier and more accessible than it has ever been before. Here’s what you can expect when you work with Point North Networks for remote monitoring and maintenance services.

Improved Accessibility

If nothing else, RMM tools promote accessibility for small businesses by breaking down the barriers of entry that have traditionally stopped them from leveraging this type of technology. By this, we mean things like price and talent pool. For price, RMM services fall into the operational costs category, meaning that they are the equivalent of a monthly payment compared to adding additional salaries to your expenses. As for the talent pool, since the majority of services can be administered remotely, physical location is not as much of an issue unless you need on-site maintenance.

Proactive Maintenance and Monitoring

It’s not easy to run a business while also keeping an eye on all of the little things that could go wrong at any moment, be it hardware hiccups or security discrepancies. When you implement RMM services, you have your outsourced provider keeping a close watch on your network for all of those small things that might fly under the radar normally. When your network is monitored in this way, we can catch small issues before they spiral out of control.

Prompt Resolutions

Sometimes issues need to be resolved quickly, and in these situations, you cannot wait for a technician to travel to your office. Remote desktop solutions allow technicians to remote right into the system itself, see the issue first-hand, and resolve the issue quickly and efficiently without the need for an on-site visit.

Implement a RMM Tool Today!

Ultimately, RMM services are incredibly beneficial for all businesses, big or small. They save time, money, and resources that you can then spend elsewhere for your business, such as growing your customer base or innovating with new ideas or services. Point North Networks, Inc., can provide your organization with remote monitoring and maintenance services; all you have to do is reach out to us at 651-234-0895.

4 types of insider threats

4 Types of Insider Threats to Watch For

It’s easy to focus on threats that are external to your business, like viruses and malware that are just waiting to infiltrate your network, but what about threats that exist from within? While insider threats are not particularly common in the dramatic, over-the-top way that they are made out to be in movies and media, they are still a very real issue that should be addressed by your organization’s network security protocols.

In a lot of ways, insider threats are even harder to identify because of the fact that it is difficult to discern what activity is acceptable and what activity is not. According to Gartner, there are four types of insider threats. Believe it or not, most insider threats don’t necessarily have malicious intent; rather, they just have a gross negligence for network security and rules put into place that protects your organization’s intellectual property. Let’s meet some of these insider threats, shall we?

Those Who Are Tricked

Also known as the “pawn,” this category includes those who are more or less tricked into becoming complicit with hackers’ agendas through the use of social engineering scams or phishing campaigns. In these cases, hackers are simply taking advantage of others who may not know enough to not go along with it.

Those Who Cooperate

Those who cooperate with third parties to disclose sensitive information or trade secrets, also known as the “collaborator,” are dangerous in their own right. Not only do they leak important information, but they do so with the deliberate intent to harm or create problems for your organization.

Those Who Make Mistakes

Sometimes people just make mistakes because they don’t take security standards seriously or deliberately fly in the face of policies. These folks fall into the category of the “goof,” and their arrogance and negligence is what leads them to make such mistakes. Goofs often make choices that benefit themselves, even if they make things significantly less secure in the process.

Those Who Act on Their Own

Sometimes insider threats emerge on their own without being a part of a bigger effort from a hacker or third party. These threats, dubbed the “lone wolf” insiders, are particularly dangerous if they have high-level access to sensitive information. The reasons for lone wolf insider threats acting the way they do might vary, but even if they are made for ethical reasons, like leaking suspicious practices or dangerous activity, this does not change their status as insiders, as they are still acting with a deliberate intent to damage the organization they work for.

 

Point North Networks, Inc., can help to secure your business from threats of all types, including insiders. To learn more about the methods we use to determine legitimate or illegitimate network activity, reach out to us at 651-234-0895.

take the lead

A Company’s Boss Needs to Take the Lead on Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity is critically important to businesses of all sizes, which means that all businesses need to put forth a concerted effort to ensure their security is locked down. This, in turn, will require someone to take point on developing a cybersecurity-focused internal culture.

 

Who better to do this than the boss?

 

Here’s the deal: it doesn’t matter how advanced your cybersecurity solutions are, or how recently your team updated their passwords. No amount of cybersecurity safeguards will protect you if your team members aren’t behaving in a security-conscious way.

The Importance of a Cybersecurity-Centric Company Culture

Have you ever heard of social proof? While it is more often a term associated with marketing, describing how people can be convinced by testimonials from their peers and contemporaries, it can play a significant role in shaping your workplace environment… although this can be a double-edged sword.

 

Basically, the culture around your cybersecurity will reinforce itself over time.

 

Let’s say that John Doe gets a job with a company, and is busy getting set up with network access and permissions to everything he will need to do his job. With a poor cybersecurity culture in place, his coworkers may suggest he just repeat his username as his password, or take some similar shortcut. If the whole department insists that this practice is okay and accepted, it’s likely that John will do just that. What’s more, old Johnny boy will likely amplify this message to Jane, the next person hired, and so on and so forth.

 

However, if we take this same scenario and change just one detail—the message that the team shares with their new coworker—the outcome could be much, much different. If company policies outline the expectation that passwords will meet a set of best practices and the employees emphasize this in their day-to-day, it is far more likely that they will be upheld.

The Boss is the One Who Sets the Tone in the Business

So, apart from turning your employee handbook into a glorified cybersecurity dream journal, what can you do to infuse security awareness into your day-to-day? There are a few things, actually:

 

  • In addition to implementing password policies, you can enforce them by only permitting passwords that meet these policies to be accepted.
  • In addition to establishing access controls, you need to audit your protections at regular intervals to identify any overlooked weak points, civilly calling attention to these shortfalls as you encounter them.
  • In addition to adding security training into your onboarding processes, you should periodically have your employees go through a refresher training course on occasion.

 

As the business’ leader, it is on the boss to take the lead in all things. Security is not where you want to make an exception. Point North Networks, Inc., is here to facilitate your improvements to your cybersecurity. Reach out to us today by calling 651-234-0895 and find out the many ways that we can assist you in improving your business—whether it’s regarding your security, your processes, or any other IT considerations.