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5-Point Plan to Prepare Today’s Students for Tomorrow’s InfoSec Jobs

Written by neteffect technologies. Posted in Blog

As information security becomes more critical, the cybersecurity talent gap continues to widen.

According to the Global Information Security Workforce Study by Frost & Sullivan, the shortage of infosec workers will reach 1.8 million by 2020. That estimate is 20 percent higher than the 1.5 million gap Frost & Sullivan’s forecast two years ago.

Organizations Struggle To Fill Security Positions

Businesses struggle to fill their security positions. Nearly a third of respondents to a survey by ISACA said they were unable to fill infosec jobs. An analysis by Stanford journalism students in 2015 estimated that 209,000 cybersecurity jobs in the United States went unfilled.

Educational institutions, from K-12 public schools to universities, are stepping up to the plate to attract new generations to STEM (science, technology, engineering, math), including cybersecurity. The industry is also contributing through program sponsorships. But the tide isn’t turning fast enough.

Cooperation Can Close InfoSec Talent Gap

Closing the cybersecurity gap takes cooperation between the private sector, non-profits, government agencies and education. Here are some steps to take together:

  1. Begin in grade school. Parents, students and teachers place a high value on computer science education. STEM education must start in grade school. Extensive research has shown that these formative years impact students’ future career choices.
  2. Attract college students. Many community colleges and universities are adding cybersecurity programs to help fill the pipeline of new infosec graduates. Federal grants are helping fund initiatives — such as  the National Centers for Academic Excellence program jointly sponsored by the NSA and Department of Homeland Security. Organizations can help by providing internships to infosec students, offering mentorships and sponsoring scholarships.
  3. Increase awareness about cybersecurity jobs. Many millennials are unaware of cybersecurity jobs and their importance. New degree programs are helping drive awareness, but that’s only a first step. The industry needs to find ways to reach out to students interested in STEM and tell a compelling story about the appeal of the cybersecurity field.
  4. Embrace diversity better. As the Global Information Security Workforce Study shows, women comprise only 11 percent of the global infosec workforce. At the same time, millennials, who are now the largest segment of the U.S. workforce, are much more diverse than previous generations. There’s a missed opportunity to build up the workforce by attracting more diverse candidates.
  5. Improve workforce retention. Retention is as much a problem as recruitment. Millennials especially value mentorships and organizational education programs; employers will need to find ways to address this need.

How neteffect Helps Meet 21st Century Cybersecurity Challenges

A Fortinet partner, neteffect technologies is doing its part to solve the talent gap, taking a leadership role in the Charlotte community and partnering with educators to prepare students for 21st century cybersecurity challenges.

Our company has brought the Fortinet network security expert certification (NSE) program to the Renaissance Academy of Information Technology, which is graduating its first class. Congratulations!

To learn more about NSE, visit Fortinet or contact neteffect technologies at 704-688-7170.


neteffect technologies Named in NetApp official Fiscal Year and Q4 Results Press Release

Written by neteffect technologies. Posted in Blog, Cloud, Company News, ContentMX, neteffect technologies blog

neteffect technologies partnered with NetApp to drive transformation and improve performance with hybrid cloud deployment.  Customers that require nonstop availability of critical business data appreciate the broad portfolio of solutions for cloud computing, flash storage, business applications, data storage for virtual servers, and disk-to-disk backup. NetApp’s converged infrastructure gives neteffect technologies the flexibility to blend on-premises and cloud services for its customers.

 

3 Tips to Keep Your Smart Building Efficient and Secure

Written by neteffect technologies. Posted in Blog

The pressure of maximizing building energy and operational efficiency is driving the adoption of smart-building technology. Smart buildings can save as much as 20-50 percent in energy consumption, but this is not their only advantage.

In commercial buildings, environmental controls, video surveillance and energy conservation are driving down operating costs. Industry leaders also see smart buildings as a solution to sustainability issues such as diminishing energy resources.

Navigant Research projects 2017 will see a tipping point in investments in intelligent buildings because “the scalable, secure and open platforms of these solutions are generating cost savings, providing energy efficiency and sustainability improvements and enhancing occupant satisfaction.”

Smart lighting and HVAC systems are two major services that building owners are adopting, and ABI Research estimates that by 2021, they will account for 32 percent and 49 percent, respectively, of revenue generated by smart building services. Overall, ABI forecasts that smart building revenues will surpass $8 billion in 2021, up from $625 million in 2015.

Smart Building Security Risks

Smart buildings, however, come with risks. Like any systems built around the Internet of Things (IoT), they are highly vulnerable to cyber attacks.

The recent ransomware attack at the Australian hotel Romantik Seehotel Jaegerwirt that locked guests out of their rooms is an example. The damage was minor — mostly inconvenience for the guests and $1,800 paid to hackers to regain control of the computers. But it’s a good lesson of how easy it is for attackers to use a phishing email or steal passwords to take control of vital building systems like power and heat.

Steps To Minimize Risks

Data breaches are not the only risks that organizations should address. While stolen data is valuable to cybercriminals, their motives for targeting organizations are evolving. Here are three tips for keeping your smart building secure.

  1. Start with a risk analysis. Identify all risks you face and the ones you’re willing to accept. Focus on mitigating the rest with controls that balance detection, prevention and response.
  2. Train all employees. Since a very large portion of breaches is the result of insider action, either by malicious actors or unwitting participants, training personnel is your first line of defense. Good cyber hygiene, including best practices for passwords, will reduce risks of simple human error. Don’t stop at the basics; educate your workforce on what kind of risks your type of sector faces and how they can identify and avoid them.
  3. Create an incident response plan. Breaches are inevitable, even when the best defense technology is in place. You need to plan for a breach, just like you plan for a natural disaster. If your building team has a playbook, they don’t need to make decisions in the heat of the moment. Test and update your response plan regularly, and give your response team the opportunity to practice for incidents.

Discover the Smart Cities Initiative

Interest in smart buildings will continue to grow, especially as the Smart Cities Initiative shows results. Know your risks and how to mitigate them before making the leap.

Managed security services provider and a partner of Fortinet, neteffect technologies partners with other SmartCLT innovators to address trends and challenges in the smart buildings market. Visit our website to learn more.

3 Questions to Ask When Evaluating Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs)

Written by neteffect technologies. Posted in Uncategorized

3 Questions to Ask When Evaluating Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs)

With the uptick in phishing attacks, ransomware and headline-grabbing data breaches, many SMBs (small and midsize businesses) are realizing they simply can’t handle security on their own. Instead, they are looking to MSSPs to provide the security expertise, technology and staffing they lack, a trend that’s fueling the growth of the worldwide MSSP market from $14.3 billion in 2014 to nearly $32 billion in 2019 (a CAGR of 17.3%).

It’s no wonder. As more organizations leverage mobile technology, the cloud and Internet of Things (IoT), they also face an ever-growing wave of more sophisticated attacks as internal IT staff and capabilities are stretched to the breaking point. This is why many SMBs are increasingly looking to MSSPs for:

  • Security expertise: Security isn’t a part-time job. With sensitive corporate data residing anywhere from an internal data center, to the cloud to even employee mobile devices, few IT staffers have the breadth and depth of expertise to ensure it all stays secure. Consequently, security is divvied up among several staffers, none of whom have the bandwidth to do the job right. MSSPs, on the other hand, can invest in a variety of staffers, each with their own specific expertise, certifications and toolsets; and leverage them across multiple clients, ensuring all receive the benefits of deep security expertise.
  • Cost savings: Instead of incurring expenses in the security tools, infrastructure and human resources necessary to keep a multi-faceted digital business secure, many SMBs are realizing the cost savings of outsourcing security tasks such as pen-testing, threat intelligence and log monitoring. Paying for these capabilities as a subscription enables you to do more with less.
  • Quick time-to-market: Getting a new data center or IT initiative off the ground is hard enough without first becoming an expert in securing the new infrastructure and applications. Good MSSPs help ensure new initiatives get up running fast without sacrificing security.

Still, organizations must realize that not all MSSPs are created equal. To ensure the MSSP you choose is up to the task, make sure your MSSP has the right:

  • Industry expertise: Outsourcing something as critical as security requires a partner that not only knows security but also the specific threats facing you, your industry and applications. Choosing an MSSP with expertise in your industry ensures you won’t get stuck with plain vanilla capabilities.
  • Collaborative mindset: No one knows your network like you do. Ensure you put the right processes and communications channels in place to keep your MSSP up to speed on what “normal” looks like so it has the context it needs to evaluate alerts quickly and effectively. Ensure it knows which applications and business units are most sensitive, and update this data over time, so it can dial up or back security appropriately.
  • Accountability: Confirm whether the MSSP you contract with is the same entity providing the work. Unfortunately, many MSSPs have been known to chase profits by signing up new customers and then offloading the job to third parties. All too often, critical tasks are passed off to an offshore company with little insight into your business or priorities. You’re stuck dealing with a middleman — leaving you less, not more, secure.

neteffect technologies can help you navigate the pros and cons of technology and security outsourcing. Call us at 704-688-7170 or visit our website.

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