Many people often think that information and network security is just about technology and how reliable or sophisticated these technologies are. Additionally, many people ask why after spending tons of money on network and security gear, their network still gets hacked, information is lost and business continuity is disrupted. For example, often questions like these run through their minds: “Am I not buying the right security products? Am I not configuring or deploying them correctly? Do I have the right staff to run my network?”
As the economy stutters forward and more corporations and businesses begin to lift travel restrictions for employees, more laptops will be traveling, too. National Cyber Security Awareness Month is a good time to rethink an inexpensive, low-tech solution to securing potentially millions of dollars worth of intellectual property and corporate brand protection.
Perhaps you are one of the lucky ones finally able to attend a professional conference. You’ve packed your bags and your laptop, brushed up your industry jargon, made sure the coffee pot is turned off and the cat is fed, and backed out of your driveway to make a happy trip to the airport.
With the ever-evolving cyberspace landscape, our reliance on information is at an all-time high. Along with that reliance, comes an increasing focus on our devices. We can all relate to the common, daily scene of people so deeply entrenched in a mobile device chat session that they are almost oblivious to the outside world. This security awareness tip focuses on the boundary outside of that device and how situational awareness can affect security. Securing the physical boundary outside of that computer, laptop, or mobile device can often pay big dividends and thwart attacks. Below is a checklist of physical security awareness items you can add to your toolbox:
Cloud services. You may or may not think about them, but they are no longer a talk of the future. Some of you probably listen to Rhapsody and Rdio, which are cloud-based streaming music services. Others perhaps use a cloud-based compression service Onavo to shrink your smartphone data and your monthly bill. Storage (Dropbox), email, social media, banking, location-based services (GPS), just to name some, all at your fingertips. For small and mid-size businesses, there’s a wide range of cloud services including productivity, finance, and accounting. For many companies and organizations, cloud adoption is on top of their priority list.
Before we continue to ride the cloud at lightning speed, shall we pause a moment to reflect on the risks? After all, there are many things that can threaten our data and services. To learn more about the current threat landscape, watch a rich and compelling on-demand webcast by Patrick Gray, principal security strategist at Cisco. Here are some specific concerns and action to take.
Social networking sites like Facebook are great tools for connecting with friends and keeping up-to-date with the good and bad things that are going on in your social circles. Unfortunately, the kind and amount of personal information that makes for great social networking can be used by people with bad intentions to cause real, physical harm. Sound far-fetched? After a referee made a controversial call in a baseball game, someone with his same name received threats meant for the ref. Today’s security awareness tip is about profile management: developing habits that help you to stay in control of the information that’s available about you online, to keep you safe in the real world.