Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Profit Power Series: IT & Physical Security

What is the one thing more valuable than your manufactured product? 

Information is the most valuable commodity you have. It can be destroyed by accident. Or it can be stolen, then sold or used to ruin or steal from your company.  In addition, some folks hack computers for the simple joy of doing it.

Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid

It happened to my company…
A number of years ago, we had a lighting strike right outside our building that burned out half of the communication ports on our PCs and dumb terminals. About $10,000 worth of damage and a real pain in the butt. After that, we isolated not only the power wires with surge protectors but also the communication wires that passed the low voltage back up through the system that caused the damage.

It happened to South Carolina…
A hacking of the South Carolina tax department lead to 3.8 Million records being stolen by a foreign entity that used some sort of phishing email to penetrate the system. A simple click on a dubious email and wham, you got a problem. Using a credit card at a department store like Target or a hardware store like Home Depot -- who both had recent hack attacks -- can lead to your identity
being stolen.

It could happen to your company…
Your employees can cause the problems by having weak passwords or by taking company records home on their own computers, tablets or phone. You are just a stolen car or lost equipment event away from a mad scurry to repair the damage. I just read that an eight-digit password made up of alphabet letters, symbols and numbers can be hacked in five hours or less by the computers out there today. The funny thing is that most of the hacking programs start with the obvious passwords like “password” or “12345678” or “myname1” and then they start with the brute force trial and error attacks.

And YOU could actually go to jail!
Almost all companies have:

  1. Employee social security numbers
  2. HIPAA (health information) data
  3. Company proprietary information
  4. Customer supplied information. 
All of this data must be secured either by law or by contract. Failure to secure this data can result in jail time and or large fines (for the SSN and HIPAA info) and possible loss of business in the case of the other two.

Two common mistakes…

  1. Most companies believe that just because they have data that isn’t that attractive (to them) that they have little to worry about. WRONG!
  2. To top it off, many companies make it all too easy to access their computers physically or do not isolate them from risk.

And three steps you can take now…

  1. First, call me, David Senkfor, for a free one-hour on-site*(see below) visit and consultation and I’ll give you a report card that grades your company relative to the risk you are currently exposed to.  No obligation, no cost.  I’ll tell you what you need to do to protect your ‘corporate memory’, your company, your money and your reputation.  At no charge to you!
  2. Check my website out for what you can do today to limit the risk and sleep better at night. Click on this link and get started now.
  3. Check out our new "Exhaust Notes" video using the link under the picture of my 1967 Chevelle to the right. In this month's video, you'll come to understand why it is essential that you implement three simple solutions that can secure your information technology and physical plant.

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