The Biggest Cyber Threats for 2013

cyber-thiefWith the explosive use of tablets and smart phones, 2012 was a busy year for cybercriminals. The leading security experts are warning of more threats coming in 2013.

The hottest targets are devices are running the Android operating system . The Android operating system is installed on 70% of all smart phones according to Kaspersky. Kaspersky identified more than 35,000 malicious Android programs in 2012. This was six times as many as were detected the prior year.

A good way to prevent these threats is by installing an Anti-Virus program and keeping it up to date. I also recommend not opening emails from people you do not know on your smartphone. I also suggest disabling JavaScript on your Smartphone browser. It will help prevent malicious scripts from running on you Android phone.

Here is a list of what some of the experts think will be big cyber threats in 2013.

Mobile Malware

More than 90% of mobile malware is going to be focused on the Android operating system. Android devices will have a high probability of an appearance of a mass worm that spreads with text messages. Apple products running IOS will also be hit.

Targeted Attacks

In 2013 you will see a rise in cyber espionage where attacks are aimed directly at a business or person of interest in the organization. Chief executives and other management make up a growing field of victims. Sales and marketing employees are also going to be targeted.

Intercepting text messages

An Android malware exists that can eavesdrop on incoming test messages and can forward them to other numbers or services. The potential exists for attacks like these to target Internet banking services that send mobile text messages. An easy way to compromise bank accounts

Cloud Attacks

As businesses and consumers move towards the cloud, you are going to see more attacks on cloud services. They offer a large amount of data and access to numerous people’s data. The hacker can gain access to numerous people’s private information in one hit. This is known as “hyper jacking”.

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Guest Tech Tip – Be Careful on the Email Links You Click

I am always looking for fresh content for this newsletter. This month I have a guest Tech Tip from Dan Gross from Waterford Union High School.

Today I received an email from Veeam, a company that I trust, inviting me to a webinar on Exchange virtualization. I didn’t read the line in the email closely enough that said “1 click registration.” Clicking the link took me to a confirmation page telling me I would receive an email shortly from Veeam with details for the event. It didn’t ask for that information again today – such as my email address – because they already had that information in their database.

Not a big deal in this case; but it’s something I have to remind users of all the time – be careful what links you click on in your email, be careful before you download external pictures, be careful when you forward.

Very often the URIs to those elements contains personalized codes that can be parsed out by the web server. That’s great when you’re the webmaster looking for analytics on your marketing campaign, but not always so great when you’re an end user or administrator concerned with your privacy or keeping your institution’s data safe.

Moreover, how many times do you get a relevant email that you forward on to others? Because the URIs in that message may relate to your specific profile, sometimes linked to third party cookies on your machine that may relate to your non-work activities, it’s important to check those links before you forward on a message – lest Google start providing advertisements for products that you didn’t know you were shopping for, and maybe not the sort of thing you want showing up at work.

In the few minutes that I wrote this, Veeam has already sent me a confirmation message for the webinar. Swift and effective! No harm done here. But it’s a good reminder that privacy and security are everyone’s responsibility. Double check before you click on an email link, load external pictures or forward on your messages.

Cloud Computing Using Amazon AWS

awsAmazon has had the ability for a sometime to offer cloud services. You can build Windows servers and pay by the hour, day or month. They make it very easy to provision servers and now offer the ability to replicate to a different region, allowing you to bring up the environment if a region is down.

I believe with cloud computing, you are going to start to see some of the bigger players offering cloud solutions that make sense. Not only does Amazon have SAS 70 and HIPPA certifications, it has a fairly dependable infrastructure. Think about the local provider providing cloud services. How redundant are they? Do they offer replication that does not cost a fortune? Do they offer the ability to easily spin up a machine?

I have a client that needed to build an environment quickly. He was able to have it up and operational in 1 day. This allowed for the company performing a software install for a critical software package the next day. He has been happy with the performance and the easy of setup.

He also has experienced no outage.

If this is something you are interested in, give me a call.

New Vendor – Riverbed

riverbed-logoTBJ Consulting is excited to announce it has partnered with Riverbed. Riverbed offers some exciting products in the WAN acceleration and optimization, disaster recovery and virtualization optimization. To find out more about Riverbed, visit their website at www.riverbed.com or contact us at 262-373-9070.

Referrals

Visa-Gift-CardWe at TBJ are looking to grow our business and we would like to enlist your help in finding clients who might benefit from our services.  For any qualified leads that result in a meeting, we are willing to send you a $100 dollar gift card. Our best leads come from referrals and we would like to reward you.

If you know of someone that you network with that could benefit from our services, use the form below or email us at sales@tbjconsulting.com

If you have a referral, please enter the details here:

[si-contact-form form=’1′]

TBJ Gadget of the Month – Microsoft RT Tablet

Windows Surface RTThis version of the tablet can be ordered directly from Microsoft. It can be ordered in three different versions. The $499 version comes without a keyboard and 32 GB of storage, $599 version that comes with a Keyboard and a $699 version that comes with a keyboard and with 64 GB of storage. You can also order different colored Keyboards.

This tablet also includes a version of Microsoft Office with a few restrictions; it can only legally be used as a student or a home user. If you are using it as part of a business, you will need to either have Office Live 365 of a copy of corporate Microsoft Office.

The display is not as nice as the current IPAD 3 with retina. It has a 920×1080 208 PPI screen, while the IPAD 3 has a 2048×1536 264 PPI.

TBJ currently has this in its lab and if you are interested in reviewing this tablet, feel free to contact us.

TBJ Monthly Word Find

giftcardSolve Our Word Find And You Could Win a $25 Dollar Gift Card!

We have these simple rules:

  • One entry per person per month
  • One winner each month
  • Contest Closes on January 29th, 2012

All entries with correct answers will be entered into a Random draw that will determine the winner.

You can submit your crossword puzzle:

• by email to marketing@tbjconsulting.com with “The January TBJ Word Find” in the subject line
• by faxing it to 262-436-2139.
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Final Thoughts – New Year, Time to Set Priorities and Plan Projects

checkboxesI find the New Year is a good time to set your priorities for the year and also plan out your projects. Typically most companies have their budgets and projects approved for the year. To make these projects successful, you need to have proper planning.

The first and foremost is to rank your projects from the most important to the least important. You then need to map out the number of hours needed to complete your projects and compare that with the man hours you have. If the numbers do not match up, you need additional help or all of the projects will not be completed.

You should also define what success is in a project and what a failure in a project is.

Finally, for larger projects, you should have some sort of project management to ensure the project is successful.

A good online tool to manage projects is Basecamp.  It has everything available in an online portal and it makes it very easy to track projects.

If you need help with your project or planning,  please contact TBJ.