Category Archives: Data Security

Group Policy Editor Guide: How to Configure and Use

group policy editor

The Group Policy Editor is a Windows administration tool that allows users to configure many important settings on their computers or networks. Administrators can configure password requirements, startup programs, and define what applications or settings other users can change on their own. This blog will deal mostly with the Windows 10 version of Group Policy Editor (gpedit), but you can find it in Windows 7, 8, and Windows Server 2003 and later. There are plenty…

Protect Your Data With Super Easy File Security Tricks!

Protect Your Data With Super Easy File Security Tricks!

Data security is an all-encompassing term. It covers processes and technologies for protecting files, databases, applications, user accounts, servers, network logins, and the network itself. But if you drill down a little in your thinking, it’s easy to see that data security is ultimately protecting a file somewhere on your system—whether desktops or servers. While data security is a good umbrella term, we need to get into more details to understand file security. File Security…

Americans and Privacy Concerns: Who Do We Trust?

Americans and Privacy Concerns: Who Do We Trust?

Who do Americans trust with their information? In light of massive data breaches, Americans have doubts about the safety of their personal data. Events like the Facebook Cambridge Analytica hack that affected 87 million Facebook profiles and the Marriott data breach that exposed data of up to 500 million guests are enough to get anyone guessing who they can trust with their sensitive information. Consumer mistrust is also prevalent when companies aren’t clear about the…

Hacker Motives: Red Flags and Prevention

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Hackers are getting savvier. They’re constantly finding new ways to abuse system vulnerabilities and sneak into our networks. The worst part? The likelihood of a cyber attack is now higher than a home invasion. Most people don’t notice when their data has been compromised until it’s too late. The silver lining is that the rise in attacks allows us to analyze the patterns hackers follow and strengthen our defenses. Major cybersecurity attacks of the past…

CEO vs. CISO Mindsets, Part IV: Monte Carlo Breach Cost Modeling for CISOs!

CEO vs. CISO Mindsets, Part IV: Monte Carlo Breach Cost Modeling for CISOs!

My main goal in this series is to give CISOs insights into CEO and board-level decision making so they can make a winning case for potential data security purchases. In my initial dive last time, I explained how CISOs should quantify two key factors involved in a breach: the frequency of attacks, and then the probability that the breach itself exceeds a certain cost threshold. Knowing these two ingredients (and that there are numbers or…

DHS Emergency Directive 19-01: How to Detect DNS Attacks

DHS Emergency Directive 19-01: How to Detect DNS Attacks

On January 22, 2019, the United State Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a warning for a DNS infrastructure hijacking attack against US government agencies. Let’s dig into the specifics of the DHS warning and look at how you can better protect and monitor your DNS services. The Emergency Directive 19-01 calls this attack a DNS Infrastructure Hijacking attack. DHS says that the attackers stole user credentials powerful enough to alter DNS records, and then…

What is DNS, How it Works + Vulnerabilities

DNS domain name system

The Domain Name System (DNS) is the internet’s version of the Yellow Pages. Back in the olden times, when you needed to find a business’ address, you looked it up in the Yellow Pages. DNS is just like that, except you don’t actually have to look anything up: your internet connected computer does that for you. It’s how your computer knows how to find Google, or ESPN.com, or Varonis.com. For two computers to communicate on…

Varonis Version 7.0

Varonis Version 7.0

Version 7.0 of the Varonis Data Security Platform is here – featuring new cloud support and advanced threat detection and response capabilities: new event sources and enrichment; out-of-the-box threat intelligence applied to Varonis security insights; and playbooks that arm customers with incident response plans right in the web UI so customers can easily follow best-practice responses to security incidents.  Active Directory risk dashboards, GDPR dashboards, and Office 365 dashboards offer at-a-glance visibility into critical exposures and concerns on key data…

12 Most Disregarded Cybersecurity Tasks

Illustration of guy with red blindfold over his eyes

Used for strategic planning, process improvement and reaching customers, data is just as important as a company’s other resources like employees or inventory. You could even say, data is gold. This golden data is also in high demand for competing companies and the malicious individuals that can profit from stealing and selling trade secrets. With the importance and abundance of data available today, the stakes of not having a comprehensive cybersecurity program in place in…

How To Use PowerShell for Privilege Escalation with Local Computer Accounts

How To Use PowerShell for Privilege Escalation with Local Computer Accounts

Privilege escalation is when an attacker is able to exploit the current rights of an account to gain additional, unexpected access. While this can be caused by zero-day vulnerabilities, state-level actors crafting attacks or cleverly disguised malware most often it’s a result of a simple account misconfiguration. From there, attackers can escalate through a series of small vulnerabilities that when chained together result in a potentially catastrophic data breach. If you’re a security professional it…

What is an SMB Port + Ports 445 and 139 Explained

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The SMB protocol enables “inter-process communication,” which is the protocol that allows applications and services on networked computers to talk to each other – you might say SMB is one of the languages that computers use to talk to each other. In early versions of Windows, SMB ran on top of the NetBIOS network architecture. Microsoft changed SMB in Windows 2000 to operate on top of TCP and use a dedicated IP port. Current versions…