Managed Security Services Provide Comprehensive Network Security
A cyberattack can shut down a business for days, even weeks. If you’re lucky, it will only result in corrupt data and some downtime. But more often, the aftermath of a cyberattack includes stolen data, a damaged reputation, lost profits, and unforeseen legal implications and costs. In the worst-case scenario, cyberattacks have caused businesses to shutter forever.
ACT is a Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) and a Managed IT Services Provider (MSP), specializing in managed technology and cybersecurity services. In this role, we offer comprehensive security solutions designed to defend companies against a cyberattack, whether in the form of downloaded malware or an aggressive ransomware campaign (and every type of threat in between). ACT’s Managed Security Services package can be scaled to meet the needs of every business cost-effectively, regardless of size and industry.
Turn-Key Managed Security Services
ACT’s turn-key Managed Security Services include more than a dozen strategic cybersecurity services designed to provide complete coverage for your business network, data, and peripherals.
Security Operations Center (SOC)
What is a Security Operations Center (SOC)?
ACT’s Security Operations Center (SOC) is an essential element of our comprehensive managed security service offering. The SOC team is comprised of security engineers and other trained cybersecurity professionals who do the following:
- Actively analyze data received from ACT’s SIEM and SOAR tools
- Assess the associated risks of every event
- Alert the client where necessary
- Take steps to remedy whatever vulnerabilities exist.
- The SOC works together with ACT’s SIEM/SOAR solution to ensure the detection, prevention, and mitigation of cybersecurity threats to your network.
How a SOC Defends Your Network
Businesses across every industry are at risk for a cyberattack. Cybercriminals are creative. They’re constantly developing new forms of malware, viruses, phishing schemes, and ransomware to fool users and evade detection. This means you must always be prepared to proactively detect and respond to threats before they result in loss. Your backup systems, spam filters, and multi-factor authentication policies are helpful, but on their own, they still leave your business exposed.
A SOC, working in conjunction with a SIEM or SOAR solution, offers comprehensive cybersecurity protection, designed to manage risk through ongoing monitoring and detection, mitigate threats by implementing prevention measures, and maintain compliance. You receive:
24/7/365 monitoring, analysis, and alerting of security events
A team of security engineers and security specialists
Cloud-based log analysis, event correlation, and behavior analytics
External threat feeds with the most current security rule sets
Machine learning algorithms for data analytics and correlation
Hardware sensor that resides in the customer’s environment and collects data
As a Managed Security Service client, you receive a dedicated SOC team. Contact an ACT specialist to learn more.
SIEM and SOAR Solutions
What is a SIEM Solution?
Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) tools effectively analyze and filter data to tell you who did what, when, and from where. SIEM aggregates large volumes of data from network devices, servers, workstations, and more. It identifies, records, monitors, and analyzes events within a real-time environment.
One of the significant advantages of SIEM is that it can detect if someone is trying to break in before they gain access to your data and automatically shut down access to the vulnerable area. The Security Operations Center (SOC) team then takes over to analyze the attack and provide remediation.
SIEM tools help organizations meet their compliance requirements by establishing ongoing proof that they are capturing and retaining log files.
Intrusion detection and prevention systems (IDS/IPS) alone won’t protect you 100% from malware. A SIEM solution adds an additional layer of protection to your systems by doing the following:
- Stores data
- Analyzes data to detect patterns and suspicious activity
- Correlates data for the SOC team to evaluate
- Sends alerts to the SOC team when there are potential security issues
What is a SOAR Solution?
A SOAR is a Security Orchestration and Remediation solution. It is the backbone of ACT’s Security Essentials offering and includes the following services:
- 24×7 Security Operations Center (SOC)
- Next-Gen Antivirus
- User Behavior Analytics
- Endpoint Detection and Response
- Network Traffic Analysis
- Deception Technology
- Log File Retention
Click here for an easy-to-read comparison of ACT’s different security offerings.
Contact an ACT specialist to learn more about SOC/SIEM solutions and determine which one is best for your organization.
Next-Gen Antivirus Software
Next-Gen Antivirus Software Takes Virus Detection and Remediation to the Next Level
You may already have basic antivirus software in place. That’s good, but it’s probably not enough. Basic antivirus software works by scanning incoming files and code that are being passed through your network. The software relies on a database of already known viruses and malware and is supposed to detect, flag, and remove the threat. But it has limitations.
ACT’s Next-Gen Antivirus software takes virus detection and remediation to the next level of endpoint security protection. It’s a system-centric, cloud-based approach that goes beyond known file-based malware signatures and heuristics. Advanced Next-Gen Antivirus software uses artificial intelligence to do the following:
- Analyze network activity 24/7/365
- Detect red flags that indicate a data breach to any device at risk
- Respond to the threat by shutting down points of entry that are at risk
- Quarantine viruses before they reach your network
The SOC team then analyzes the data, remediates the problem, and creates protocols to prevent further attacks.
Next-Gen Antivirus Software is part of ACT’s Managed Security Service offering and prevents network outages due to malware, ransomware, and other nefarious viruses. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn more.
Backup and Disaster Recovery Solutions
Accidents Happen. ACT’s Backup and Disaster Recovery Solutions Minimize the Consequences.
Disasters are always unexpected, and without backup and disaster recovery solutions in place, it can be catastrophic for a business.
ACT’s backup and disaster recovery solutions provide a cost-effective, reliable solution that makes automated backup and disaster recovery a reality for all businesses. The services mitigate problems and get you up and running as quickly as possible in an emergency.
First and foremost, we pride ourselves on being proactive. Redundant backups are stored securely on physical servers and cloud-based systems inside our enterprise-class data facility. To ensure your data is ready when you need it, we conduct disaster recovery testing that simulates various natural and human-made disasters and verifies your backups are working correctly.
In the event of a business disruption, your data is quickly restored and made accessible to your employees, minimizing downtime and interruptions. Next, ACT’s team of security engineers goes to work analyzing what happened, remedying the situation, and putting protocols in place to prevent it from happening again.
The three most common mistakes we see businesses make are:
- Not backing up data off-site
- Not realizing their backup solution has a limited retention policy
- Not backing up cloud-based data
- Not verifying or testing the integrity of the backup data
ACT’s backup and disaster recovery solutions include:
- Backups as often as every 15 minutes
- Off-site cloud synchronization
- On-demand restores
- Timely alerts about backup problems
- Instant virtualization of failed system
- Monitoring of backups
- Scheduled disaster recovery testing
- Backup verification
- Year-end backup archives
- Backup of Office 365 data
Backup and Disaster Recovery solutions are part of ACT’s Managed Security Service. You can read more about ACT’s backup and disaster recovery services, or contact an ACT specialist to discuss how we can help protect your business.
Dark Web Monitoring
The “dark web” is a section of the Internet containing hidden websites only accessible to individuals with special access privileges using a special browser. Search engines do not index the dark web, and IP addresses are masked. Due to this privacy level, the dark web has become a haven for criminals seeking to buy, sell, and trade stolen data.
Dark web monitoring – also known as cyber monitoring – is an identity theft prevention service that is part of ACT’s Managed Security Service offering. It helps ensure your employee’s passwords and login credentials, as well as the data stored on your server, have not been stolen unbeknownst to you. ACT monitors your information and server activity, checking web pages, blogs, social media feeds, bulletin boards, chat rooms, forums, peer-to-peer sharing networks, and more. Our security engineers are immediately notified if your information is found online and begin remediation efforts.
Dark Web Monitoring is included in ACT’s Managed Security Service offering. Learn how Dark Web Monitoring can protect your business and its reputation. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn more.
Phishing Campaigns Uncover Where You Are Vulnerable
Human error, negligence, and clicking on malicious links are among the most common reasons for breaches. In 2020, cybercrime increased approximately 85%, with a more than 600% explosion in phishing emails. This is likely due to the combination of a global pandemic, economic uncertainty, and a world full of new remote workers.
Phishing emails capture sensitive information from users, such as login credentials, credit card details, or bank information, by appearing as a reputable email communication when, in fact, it’s a cybercriminal. Phishing emails can also distribute spyware and malware by enticing people to click on links or open attachments designed to perform a malicious task.
94% of malware was delivered by email last year, and one of the top malicious email attachment types was the common .doc extension, a Microsoft Office document. Studies show that most employees don’t suspect .doc files as being malicious and will open them, inadvertently launching the malware.
Finding ways to protect your network from user errors is where phishing campaigns come in. Phishing campaigns, combined with security awareness training, achieve the following:
- Phishing campaigns simulate an email attack, sending emails to your employees to test their fortitude and see if they are practicing what they have been taught.
- The data then gets collected and reported, so management knows which employees require additional training.
- Security awareness training teaches your employees how to identify dangerous emails containing phishing scams, malware, ransomware, and spyware before they open them.
Phishing campaigns are included inside of ACT’s Managed Security Service offering. Learn how these simulated phishing attacks can provide your business with an extra layer of proactive protection and assist you in training your staff. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn more.
DNS Perimeter Security
DNS Perimeter Security: the Digital Safety Net Every Business Needs
DNS Perimeter Security casts a digital safety net over your network, providing a broad set of cloud-based protection that not only improves security but simplifies management. ACT’s DNS Perimeter Security adds a layer of breach protection and internet visibility for small businesses without dedicated security professionals to enterprises with complex environments.
DNS Perimeter Security works in two ways.
First, DNS perimeter security allows you to prevent access to websites you are concerned about proactively.
Second, it keeps a watchful eye on the Internet and automatically flags an IP address if it notices a problem or unusual activity. The solution blocks malicious and unwanted domains, IP addresses, and cloud applications before a connection is ever established. For example, if a user clicks on a malicious link and your DNS perimeter security detects the website is suspicious, it will automatically block the malware from downloading.
A DNS Perimeter Security agent is also available for mobile devices, a must in today’s environment. It provides an extra layer of security and monitors web browsing activity, even when employees are not in the office.
ACT’s DNS Perimeter Security solution accomplishes the following:
- Detects and blocks threats that other solutions miss
- Protects all your devices and locations
- Integrates seamlessly with existing security stack
DNS Perimeter Security is included for all Managed Security Service clients. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn more.
Multi-Factor Authentication Reduces the Likelihood of a Data Breach
The goal of multi-factor authentication (MFA) is to create a layered defense, making it more difficult for an intruder to access your network, devices, applications, and online accounts. Here’s how it works:
Multi-factor authentication requires you to input two or more pieces of information that prove you are the owner of the account. For example, once you enter your login credentials, you will receive a unique code via text, email, or phone. That code must be entered into the secure website or application to gain access. Therefore, even if a hacker possesses your passwords, they will not be able to access your data without that second code (presumably sent to a device in your possession).
ACT highly recommends implementing multi-factor authentication on every computer login, email account, secure application, and secure website that you and your employees access.
As a Managed Security Services client, ACT identifies your critical data and applications and proactively sets up multi-factor authentication system-wide. This ensures every employee is abiding by proper security protocols.
Multi-factor authentication is built-in to ACT’s Managed Security Service offering. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn how we implement MFA protocols and how they can enhance your network security.
Reduce the Chances of a Data Breach by Improving Email Security
A lack of email security is the most significant source of security breaches.
The most basic way to improve email security is a spam filter. Spam filters are standard and often built-in to email applications, such as Outlook. The standard filters sort out suspicious and promotional emails from your inbox by placing them in a separate folder or tab, sometimes called ‘junk,’ ‘spam,’ ‘promotional,’ or ‘other.’ This may keep your inbox more organized, but there is a glaring downside. The malicious email has still been delivered through your network and onto a device.
ACT recommends more advanced email security for most businesses. We install an advanced third-party spam filter that is cloud-based. This advanced filter removes spam, junk email, suspicious attachments, and malicious URLs before they get to your network. Because the malicious items never reach your network or individual computers, it dramatically reduces your chances of infection due to viruses and user error.
The email security system delivers a daily digest to each user, alerting them to what was blocked and giving them the option of releasing the communication into their inbox. Combined with security awareness training, you can feel confident that your employees are acting responsibly.
Certain industries may want to take email security a step further, instituting email encryption, as well. Industries such as healthcare, finance, banking, accounting, and law need to send confidential and sensitive information every day. Learn how email encryption can protect those communications.
Email security is available to all Managed Security Service clients. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn how you can implement more robust email security inside your organization.
Email Encryption Ensures Confidential Data Stays Confidential
Email encryption is the next level of email security. Encrypting email messages before they are sent renders them unreadable without a passcode.
Email encryption is highly recommended if your emails contain sensitive information. Industries such as healthcare, accounting, banking, finance, and law rely heavily on email encryption services due to the nature of the information they often share (i.e., medical records, bank account numbers, and financial data).
However, since email represents the largest source of data breaches, ACT recommends that every business consider email encryption if they email documents containing any of the following Personally Identifiable Information (PII):
- Personal client information
- Phone numbers
- Social Security number
- Account numbers
Not every email needs to be encrypted, of course. The right system allows you to easily select the email you wish to encrypt. Clients then receive an email that a secure message has been sent, and they log into their secure portal to access the communication and any attachments you wish to share. Their response is encrypted as well. You can implement additional security rules, such as not allowing the email to be forwarded or printed and even setting it to delete automatically after a time.
Email encryption is available to all Managed Security Service clients. Learn how email encryption and email security protocols can further reduce the threat of a data breach. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn more.
Last year, 60% of network breaches involved vulnerabilities for which a patch was available but not applied. Proactive security patching is critical to ensuring your network’s security. Security patching needs to be done regularly for your operating system and every software application you run.
Software patches are being released every day by various software vendors, such as Microsoft, Google, Apple, Cisco, and more. Cybercriminals know when vulnerabilities exist, and they are aggressively targeting businesses that have not applied patches timely.
As an ACT Managed Security client, you don’t have to worry. ACT proactively installs security patches as they become available. We cover your operating systems, servers, workstations, firewalls, networking devices, wireless access points, software applications, and more.
Security patching and system reboots are also completed outside of regular business hours to ensure your operations are not interrupted.
Security patching is part of ACT’s Managed Security Service offering. Ensure your network is up-to-date with every security patch available before it’s too late. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn more.
Certain industries, such as finance, accounting, healthcare, and manufacturing, must prove they are staying up-to-date with standard and regulatory requirements. Businesses must prove they have taken every measure to ensure the safety of their clients’ Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and are capturing and reporting data appropriately.
Businesses often need help defining policies and procedures, documentation, cybersecurity technologies, or performing ongoing monitoring and reporting. You may be required to secure patient or client data, implement email encryption, or provide proof of backup retention. ACT offers all of this and more.
ACT’s sophisticated platform ensures compliance in the following areas:
- HIPAA compliance
- SEC and FINRA compliance
- ISO Certification and ITAR
- SOX compliance
- PCI DSS compliance
ACT’s compliance services include the following:
- Vulnerability scans
- Risk assessments
- Development of policies and procedures
- Security awareness training
- Remediation planning and implementation
Compliance services are available to all Managed Security Service clients. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn how a Vulnerability Scan can benefit your organization.
Disk Encryption Encrypts Every Bit of Data, Making it Virtually Impossible to Steal Your Data
Disk encryption protects your information by converting all your data into unreadable code that an unauthorized person cannot easily decipher. For example, your computer cannot be started without a pre-boot authentication password. Furthermore, the actual data is encrypted, eliminating the possibility of a breach should the hard drive be stolen.
Disk encryption is beneficial in a variety of instances. For example:
- Specific industries, such as healthcare and financial services, maintain such sensitive data about their patients and clients that they require most, if not all, of their devices to be encrypted.
- If you or your employees travel often, disk encryption provides an extra layer of security should a device be lost or stolen.
- If you are trying to achieve compliance, disk encryption is essential.
- If you recycle hardware – such as laptops, desktops, external storage drives, flash drives, or mobile devices – knowing that you’ve instituted disk encryption can give you peace of mind a dumpster diver will not steal your data.
Disk encryption is built-in to ACT’s Managed Security Service offering. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn more.
Vulnerability Scanning Detects Risk Before it Becomes a Problem
Data breaches expose billions of records every year, costing companies millions of dollars in lost business, tarnished reputations, and remediation costs. Vulnerability scanning examines your entire network and every device connected to it, searching for vulnerabilities that can put your organization at risk.
ACT uses intelligent tools to analyze the inside of your network, as well as the outside perimeter. The reports are sent to our SOC security engineers, who analyze the information, assess the risk, and propose solutions to remedy the issues before they cause your business a problem.
Vulnerability scanning completes another piece of the puzzle when securing your network. For best results, ACT recommends a vulnerability scan at least quarterly.
Vulnerability scanning is available to all Managed Security Service clients. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn how a Vulnerability Scan can benefit your organization.
Mobile Device Management
Many companies have moved to a “bring-your-own-device” (BYOD) model, allowing employees to use their personal smartphones, tablets, and laptops for work. To ensure your network remains secure while allowing employees a degree of freedom, you’ll need a Mobile Device Management (MDM) tool.
The BYOD model has some advantages, including cost savings on purchasing and replacing technology and eliminating the learning curve for employees. However, there are also some downsides to be aware of.
For starters, there are security risks. Ask yourself:
- Does every device have advanced antivirus software installed?
- Is every device being updated and patched timely?
- Are you confident employees are accessing your network and the internet securely?
There is also the risk of data loss. For example, if an employee is saving company data to their personal device and quits or is fired, how do you retrieve that data? Even if your policy states that data must be kept on the company network, there remains a risk that local copies have been saved.
ACT’s Mobile Device Management (MDM) tool manages all types of mobile devices. We can remotely encrypt data, disable accounts, and even wipe devices clean of all business data, all without the employee’s involvement.
Mobile device management is available to all Managed Security Service clients. Contact an ACT specialist today to learn how a Vulnerability Scan can benefit your organization.
Security Awareness Training
To learn more about each of these services and how they impact your network’s security, contact ACT for a no-obligation consultation.
Which Businesses are Most at Risk for a Cyberattack?
Businesses of every size are at risk. In some ways, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are in greater danger than the largest enterprises. The threat is greater because SMEs are less likely to have made significant cybersecurity investments. Hackers know this, and they dedicate much of their time to exploiting those vulnerabilities.
Certain industries are indeed more popular targets for cybercriminals. For example, healthcare practices, financial services, and accounting firms possess more personal information about an individual than other companies.
But hackers and identity thieves are not picky; if you have sensitive data in your possession, they want it. Computer viruses and ransomware do not discriminate; if you have a network, malware will spread.
Scary Cybersecurity Statistics Every Company Should Know
Are you concerned about the cost of implementing a cybersecurity service package? Before you choose to risk it all, consider the cost of ignoring cybersecurity threats. Here are some cybersecurity statistics you should know:
- Organizations spend an average of $7.68 million per cybersecurity incident. Could your business survive that expense?
- 43% of SMEs lack a cybersecurity defense plan, and one in five experienced a data breach or cyberattack in the past 12 months. How will you respond when you are breached?
- 46% of SMEs experienced 5-16 hours of breach-related downtime last year. What would that cost you?
- 70% of employee passwords were stolen or lost last year. Do you have password protection protocols and multi-factor authentication in place?
- In 2020, 22% of SMEs switched to a remote workforce without a cybersecurity threat prevention plan in place. 39% of those companies have no incident response plan for when things go south. Are any of your employees remote? If so, have you implemented additional safety measures to protect your organization?
ACT offers world-class managed security services to businesses throughout New Jersey, New York, and across the United States. Our Managed Security Services package protects your network from every point of entry to its very core.
Regardless of size and industry, every business needs to have some level of security in place. While cybersecurity services can be purchased a la carte from some providers, you run the significant risk that your entire network will likely not be protected.
Contact ACT’s security team today to learn how ACT’s Managed Security Services can protect your entire organization.
*Statistics cited from BullGuard survey and IBM and the Ponemon Institute’s The Cost of Insider Threats Global Report 2020