Author Archives: Gareth McQuaid

Christmas Cheers, hacking fears, don’t end up in tears.

Christmas Cheers, hacking fears, don’t end up in tears.

As Christmas approaches, amidst sore heads, panic buying for our partners and Brexit being all over the news, we now have to remember more passwords, to avoid our well earned money being syphoned out of our accounts through the internet.

The list below, whilst not exhaustive, gives you a good start at protecting yourself against a malicious attack.

 

 

  • Approval word or phrase– all staff who make payments within a business should have a secret authorisation word. This will ensure that any email asking for immediate payment will be vetted.
  • Beware of urgency – most scams will try and make you commit to payments, logging in, checking payments immediately. Take a step back, think and then decide if this is legitimate or fake.
  • Simple passwords – use something other than Pa55w0rd, Letme1N, or your pet dogs name.
  • Don’t click on links in email – go to the site and login (look for the https: too)
  • Data collection without you knowing it? For example, have you seen the Facebook quiz that’s asks you for your maiden name, middle name and pets name to reveal you hidden screen name.  Ever thought that someone may be collecting vital information that could compromise your login?

Most people use the same password for several accounts, giving hackers access to everything if your password is exposed.

Check to see if your password has been compromised?

Check to see if email address has been compromised?

The safest way to store all of your passwords is by using a password manager, there are several good services for this including 1Password, LastPass, Dashlane and RoboForm. These services store all login credentials in one highly secure vault for which you only have to remember one password. Ensure whichever password manager you use has multi factor authentication when setting up, as this will help prevent unauthorised access to your account and compromising your valuable data.

If you do nothing else this Christmas.

Ensure you have a data backup plan.  This means a copy of all your valuable data somewhere other than on your network.  Having a hard drive connected to your server is no longer a solution as crypto software will encrypt both the server and the hard drive.

Finally…

We, at Matrix Business IT, hope you have found the above of use and wish you a very Merry Christmas.  We sincerely hope that your waist line is your worry at Christmas and not your online security.

Concerned? contact a member of the Matrix team on 01329 888444 or email moreinfo@mtxit.com.

Apple announce fault in MacBook Pro hard drive

Apple announce fault in MacBook Pro hard drive

Do you have a potentially faulty MacBook Pro hard drive?

Apple have announced that some MacBook Pro owners are losing data due to hardware failure.  Any 128GB/256GB, non-touch bar, 13-inch MacBook Pro purchased between June 2017 and June 2018 are susceptible to this problem.

To prevent data loss Matrix has compiled three easy steps:

MacBook Pro Hard Drive Fault

1. Check on the Apple web site to see if your MacBook needs repairing.  Your serial number can be found in the top left corner of your menu bar and go to ‘About this mac’.  Once you have the serial number click here and check –  https://goo.gl/iNa9aN.

2. BEFORE YOU REPAIR, ensure that you have a backup of your Mac (https://goo.gl/CYBwjh).

3. Arrange for Apple to repair (free) and then upon receipt of your fixed MacBook Pro you will need to restore your system from the backup (https://goo.gl/cgCs6F).

 

If you need assistance establishing whether your device is at risk – or advice on backing up or restoring your data please contact a member of the Matrix team on 01329 888444 or email moreinfo@mtxit.com.

5 Security Threats you Need to Know!

5 Security Threats you Need to Know!

Businesses are no longer sitting on their hands when deciding to move applications and data to the cloud. They are doing it; however, security continues to be a major concern. For us to minimize the risk of security threats, we would first need to identify the top security threats that we are faced with. These can be from a technical perspective or just from simple mistakes.

Data Breaches:

Cloud environments often face many threats that can target the most traditional corporate networks. However due to the array of data being stored within cloud servers, the cloud often becomes an attractive target to breaches. The amount of damage caused can often depend on the sensitivity of the data exposed. The impact of a breach on a company. Companies may obtain fines , face lawsuits or even criminal charges. This can accumulate significant costs to the business and can potentially cause an indirect effect like brand damage and loss of business.

To combat this, cloud providers tend to have security controls to protect the environments of the cloud, but companies do have a responsibility for protecting their own data in the cloud.

Compromised Credentials and broken authentication:

Data breaches and other formats of attack are often a result from a lenient authentication, weak passwords and poor management. Companies of ten struggle with identity management as they try to allocate specific permissions to an appropriate users job role. Another struggle they may have is to remember to remove user access when either a job has changed or when an employee leaves the organisation.

Exploited system vulnerabilities:

System vulnerabilities are not new, however they have become an increasing problem. Organisations tend to share memory, databases and other resources within proximity to one another. This creates a larger area for a bug to attack.

Luckily, attacks on vulnerabilities can be eased with a ‘basic OT process’. These can include a regular scan, prompt patch management and a quick follow up report.

Account Hijacking:

Phishing, fraud and software exploits are successful and cloud services can add another layer to the threat. Attackers can monitor activities, manipulate transactions and modify data. They may also use cloud services to launch other attacks.

Organisations should stop sharing account credentials between users and services. They should also enable a multifactor authentication scheme when available. Accounts and even service accounts should be monitored to ensure that each transaction can be traced to a known owner, so it ensures you that there has be no hijacking to the account.

Another successful office move!

Another successful office move!

 

Without a doubt moving office can be a very stressful ordeal. People, boxes and IT equipment everywhere.

However, we were lucky enough to help move a south coast leading Marketing Company into offices within Portsmouth.

While moving all their IT equipment and IT infrastructure, we set up a brand new “Hosted Telephone System”.

The move went incredibly well, look at the pictures!!!

       

Best of luck Luke and to the rest of your team in your new office! Enjoy!

Welcome to the team Marco!

Welcome to the team Marco!

Our team is expanding!

We would also like to welcome Marco Dos Santos!

Marco is a great addition to the Matrix Team, being one of our engineers, he will be responding to call-outs, as well as working remotely, to help our customers with their IT needs.

“There is a great team vibe, all happy going and always willing to help each other out. It’s great being part of this team great team spirit. When it’s time to work we will work, but there is always a moment to have a quick joke. “

Welcome Marco! We look forward to working with you and seeing what you bring to Matrix and the team.