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Peters Computer Solutions

Peters Computer Solutions


9 common risk factors related to computer networks

Posted by François Desjardins, Groupe Informatique Present 03-04-2018 2:41 pm

News Millenium Micro - 9 common risk factors related to computer networks Today, computer networks are a driving force in every business, given the volume of information exchanged electronically. But connectivity and information-sharing also create an increased risk of data loss or service interruptions. A system failure can be disastrous.

To find out whether a sword of Damocles is hanging over your business, it is crucial to conduct an analysis of the potential risks that your network faces every day.

If you are dealing with any one of the following 9 problem situations, you must remedy the situation as quickly as possible. Here are our recommendations:

1. Permanent passwords

Not having an expiration date for user passwords creates a significant hacking risk. In fact, it gives easier access to unauthorized users who wish to access your network.

Analyze all user accounts whose passwords have never been changed. Then, set up a regular, automatic password reset.

2. Inactive computers

Connected computers that are not currently being used are a risk for businesses, as the equipment is not regularly verified.

Make a list of inactive workstations and analyze your needs. Should these devices be removed from your environment, or turned on again and updated?

3. Inactive antispyware or antivirus software

Malicious software, also called a virus, is created to damage networks by spreading from one computer to another. This is why all workstations and servers not equipped with an antivirus and antispyware software are a real threat to businesses.

Make sure that antispyware and antivirus software are active and updated regularly across the entire network. By doing so, you will avoid security or productivity problems related to a virus outbreak across your IT environment.

4. An operating system with extended maintenance

Extended maintenance is a grace period granted to users of an operating system, and it will soon be abandoned by suppliers, meaning that support and updates will no longer be provided. Workstations with an operating system that has extended maintenance put you at risk of losses that will not be assumed by the service provider.

Upgrade all workstations whose operating system still falls within an extended maintenance period.

5. An unsecured listening port

For some businesses, the use of an unsecured listening ports is legitimate and even necessary. However, workstations whose protocols are unsecured create a risk for data exchanging. For this reason, they require special attention.

Minimize the use of unsecured listening ports as much as possible within your network to avoid the spread of malicious software. When this type of service is required, it is recommended to analyze the programs that listen within the network to ensure their necessity and security.

6. An obsolete operating system

Workstations whose operating systems are no longer supported no longer get the vital updates and security patches they need. They therefore present a real threat to your entire network.

Upgrade or replace computers whose operating system is obsolete.

7. Users who are inactive for more than 30 days

A user who is not connected for over 30 days may be a former employee or supplier. Since most information system losses are caused by internal sources, this type of situation puts the business at risk of facing forms of corporate surveillance or hacking.

Remove or disable user access of those who have not connected to the network in over 30 days.

8. Absence of a redundant domain controller

Not having a redundant domain controller who replicates data increases your risk of services interruptions, operation stoppages and significant data and revenue losses.

Analyze the risks that you face. Then, evaluate the costs and advantages of implementing a redundant domain controller.

9. A firewall that is no longer supported and not up-to-date

A firewall is a barrier between the web and your environment that prevents malware programs from being installed and prevents intrusion attempts within your environment. It is essential that this protection be optimized and updated to reduce the negative impacts on your environment.

A "sandbox" mode is available to verify and validate what reaches your environment before reaching the firewall, which also adds an additional layer of protection.

Computer security and that of the network especially, must not be taken lightly and we must not forget that threats do not only arise from external hackers. In fact, more subtle but cumulative threats can be the main cause for major problems within businesses, when they could have been prevented!

François Desjardins, Groupe Informatique Present,