The Top 5 Risks of Cloud Migration

the top 5 risks of cloud migration

The Top 5 Risks of Cloud Migration

When it comes to cloud migration, there are plenty of risks involved. Every business considering migrating its IT infrastructure from a traditional data center to a public cloud must identify potential obstacles. After all, it’s not an easy transition, even with the many tools and resources available. A study by New Voice Media found that only 14 percent of companies that had begun transitioning to the cloud environment completed the process successfully. This means businesses have plenty of opportunities to get things right the first time. With so much information available about how and why companies should migrate their IT infrastructure to the cloud, it’s essential to understand which risks need addressing first.

When deciding about cloud migration services, one of the first things to remember is the risk involved with the process. There are many different types of risk, ranging from financial to technical. In this blog, we’ll learn the top 5 risks of cloud migration and how to mitigate them.

 

Cloud Migration is Only the Beginning

Cloud migration is the process of moving applications, data, and other business elements from on-premises infrastructure to the cloud. When companies approach the decision for cloud adoption, they often think it will solve all of their problems. The most significant risk is that businesses assume they can put off addressing the issues they face today by migrating tomorrow. In reality, migration is only the beginning of a new set of challenges that businesses must overcome to ensure their data remains safe and secure in the long term. If a company has a poor security system today, it will have a flawed one tomorrow, regardless of whether the data is hosted on-premises or in the cloud. This is why migration should be seen as a way to improve the business environment rather than just a quick fix to a single issue.

There are four main types of cloud migration: Lift and Shift, Replatforming, Refactoring, and Rearchitecting. These four types of cloud migration offer businesses different levels of transformation and complexity, providing options to choose the most suitable approach for their needs.

Why is Security in the Cloud a Challenge?

Migration to the cloud should be considered a long-term investment, not a short-term solution. However, the fact that most organizations are new to the cloud platform makes it difficult for them to know what to expect. Often, businesses don’t fully understand the risk associated with, and the potential impact cloud migration could have on their business. Of course, security is the biggest challenge of all. Public cloud data centers are designed for maximum scalability and flexibility, so companies don’t have the same level of control and visibility as they do with their own data centers. Even if a business uses a managed cloud provider or hybrid clouds, it still has to ensure it applies the proper security measures to keep its data safe.

To mitigate the risks associated with cloud migration, developing a comprehensive cloud migration plan and carefully choosing a reliable cloud migration service provider is crucial.

The-Top-5-Risks-of-Cloud-Migration middleData Theft Causes Unauthorized Access

Data theft is a common problem with traditional infrastructure. If a company fails to protect its application and data, unauthorized access is always a risk. Businesses are no longer in control when that data is migrated to the cloud. When migrating to the cloud, companies often store their data in a third-party facility or premises data center. This creates a single point of failure; hackers will have access to all the data if they breach security. This can include all types of information, including personally identifiable and sensitive client information. If this data is stolen and isn’t encrypted, it can be used for malicious purposes, including identity theft and financial fraud. The potential economic impact on a business can be huge.

 

How to avoid it?
  • Encryption: Implement strong encryption methods for data in transit and at rest. This ensures that even if unauthorized access occurs, the stolen data remains unreadable.
  • Access Control: Utilize robust access control mechanisms to limit and monitor who can access sensitive data. Implement multi-factor authentication for an added layer of security.

Third-Party Product Comes with Security Risks

Third-party products are needed in every aspect of the business. However, they present certain security risks. For example, a third-party VPN device could be easy for hackers to compromise. When migrating to the cloud, it is crucial to understand the security level of third-party products and services. Businesses must make sure the service provider uses a secure VPN connection when outsourcing. They should also consider hiring a third-party provider with a secure data center.

 

How to avoid it?
  • Vendor Assessment: Conduct thorough security assessments of third-party products and services before integrating them into your cloud environment. Ensure that vendors adhere to industry-standard security practices.
  • Continuous Monitoring: Regularly monitor and update third-party products to address any vulnerabilities promptly.

Hackers Can Compromise Vulnerable VPN Devices

Virtual private networks, or VPNs, provide a secure connection that keeps your internet data hidden from hackers and enables companies to safeguard their private cloud resources. Many cloud apps require a VPN to transport data from on-premises systems to the cloud. Although they are often bidirectional, VPNs are set up to only work in one direction. This frequently exposes your business to a cloud service provider attack. When hackers break into a VPN device, they can access the data transmitted between a remote user and the data center. This can result in data loss, stolen information, and financial losses.

 

How to avoid it?
  • VPN Security Best Practices: Implement best practices for VPN security, such as regular updates, strong encryption protocols, and multi-factor authentication.
  • Network Segmentation: Employ network segmentation to isolate critical components and minimize the impact of a potential breach.

Accidental Exposure of User Credentials

Cybercriminals typically use cloud apps as a cover in their phishing assaults.  Due to the widespread usage of cloud-based communications and document-sharing services, employees are used to getting emails with links requesting them to validate their credentials before accessing a particular site or document.

Businesses often collect user credentials on the premises, such as passwords and usernames. However, when these credentials are migrated to the cloud, they are stored the same way as the other data. If hackers can access this information, it can result in a severe security breach. If the credentials are stored in plain text, hackers will be able to see them. This is one of the most common ways for hackers to access secure data. A fast and secure migration process involves encrypting the user credentials. However, some companies don’t make this a priority.

 

How to avoid it?
  • Education and Training: Provide ongoing cybersecurity education and training for employees to recognize phishing attempts and avoid falling victim to credential theft.
  • Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Enforce MFA to add an extra layer of protection, even if user credentials are compromised.

Lack of Secure API

An API is essential for connecting different business components, including CRM, application migration, and billing systems. If a company doesn’t put security at the forefront when designing its API, it can pose a significant risk to the business. When creating an API or a cloud native app, it is crucial to understand the security requirements. This includes authentication, authorization, and session management. If a company overlooks any of these requirements, it can result in a severe breach of security. Hackers can access sensitive data in the cloud if the API is easy to compromise. The Facebook-Cambridge Analytical Scandal, which gave Cambridge Analytica access to user data, is the most common example of an insecure API.

 

How to avoid it?
  • API Security Guidelines: Follow industry best practices and guidelines for designing secure APIs. This includes proper authentication, authorization, and encryption of data transmitted via APIs.
  • Regular Audits: Conduct regular security audits and assessments of APIs to identify and address vulnerabilities proactively.

Conclusion

By incorporating these strategies into your cloud migration plan and partnering with a reliable cloud migration service provider, you can significantly reduce the cloud migration challenges. Regularly reassess and update your security measures to adapt to evolving threats and technology advancements.

Moving to the cloud platform can be your business’s best action. Before going further, be sure you have a clear cloud migration strategy and are aware of the dangers associated with potential incompatibilities with the current architecture, security threats, and reduced visibility and control. Additionally, make every effort to prevent data loss, incomplete data deletion, excessive spending, and additional latency. Cloud migration plan might benefit your company if you can avoid these problems.

If you are considering moving your business to the cloud, you might have concerns about data security and the potential for downtime that could impact your customers. With Protected Harbor, you can rest assured that your data will be secure and available whenever needed while we create a tailored migration plan. Our engineers are certified by every primary cloud provider, and our team members are dedicated to your business’s success. We are rated as one of the top cloud computing companies in the US by Goodfirms.

With our help, you can start enjoying the benefits of the cloud sooner rather than later. Contact our cloud migration expert today.

Managed Services vs. Cloud Computing

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Managed Services vs. Cloud Computing: What’s the Difference?

Suppose you’re a CIO of a company or just an employee. In that case, it’s likely that sooner or later, you will have to deal with two opposing forces: on the one hand, the demands of your organization and the increasing need for agility, and on the other, your team’s inability to manage everything in a digital world. These two factors often lead to a choice between having a managed services contract, which relieves some pressure from your technical department by allowing them to use third-party companies instead of managing services themselves or going all-in with cloud computing.

Managed services and cloud computing can help businesses streamline operations, automate processes, and make data-driven decisions. They also have several things in common that make understanding the differences between managed services and cloud computing more accessible. Managed services and cloud computing are two popular ways organizations outsource their technology needs. Managed services refer to outsourcing day-to-day technology management, including data management systems and IT infrastructure management. On the other hand, cloud computing refers to using cloud-based services to store and access data securely.

Whether you’re a business looking to cut costs or develop an online presence, knowing what these services are and how they can benefit your organization is essential. Read on to learn more about the similarities and differences between managed services and cloud computing.

What is a Managed Service?

Managed services refer to a type of outsourcing where a company owns the technology and staff of another company, but not the business process or the customer relationship. A managed service provider (MSP) offers customers various types of managed services, governed by a service level agreement (SLA). This agreement outlines the expected level of service, including response time, issue resolution, and performance metrics.

One popular type of managed service is data management. This involves the storage, retrieval, and security of customer data. Another type of managed service is information technology services, which include the management of an organization’s technology infrastructure, such as servers, networks, and software applications.

Protected Harbor offers clients various managed services, including data management, cloud computing, migration, and information technology services. We work with our clients to develop customized SLAs that meet their specific needs and provide them with peace of mind knowing that their technology and data are in good hands.

There are several reasons why companies choose to partner with us for their managed services needs. One of the main reasons is our expertise in data management, which helps clients improve their data security and compliance. We also offer various managed services, including cloud-based solutions, which provide our clients the flexibility and scalability they need to grow their businesses.

For example, a hosting company outsources the management of its infrastructure to a third-party company. The customer’s website is hosted on the managed service provider’s cloud. The ordered service provider has managed the hosting for the customer for a fee.

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is the delivery of resources and services through a network of shared hardware and software that reside on remote servers and are accessed through a network. This means you don’t own or manage any technology but instead access it via the Internet cloud. You can, for example, use a shared spreadsheet on someone’s computer over the Internet without knowing anything about the computer’s technical setup.

It is also referred to as “virtual computing.” A cloud provider like Amazon offers various storage, computing, and software services. The advantage of using a cloud provider is that it saves you time by letting you outsource tasks that used to take up a lot of your time, like managing the technical setup of employees’ computers, to a service provider.

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Advantages of Cloud Computing

Cloud providers offer several advantages over managed services providers. First, you get access to a broader range of services and benefits, like automatic backup and disaster recovery. The second is that you don’t have the costs associated with data center maintenance or power. Another advantage of cloud computing is that you are not limited to using the technology of a single provider since the cloud is an open network where anyone can offer a service. This means you can access a broader range of technologies and services without being limited to the ones a managed service provider offers.

Managed Services vs. Cloud Computing

Managed services and cloud computing benefits organizations looking to improve their technology capabilities. With managed services, organizations can benefit from expert monitoring and management of their technology infrastructure and data management strategies that can help them extract valuable insights from the data they collect. With cloud computing, organizations can benefit from scalable, cost-effective solutions allowing them to access their data anywhere.

Managed services can help organizations leverage machine learning and business intelligence to make informed business decisions. At the same time, cloud computing can provide the flexibility and scalability needed to support growth and innovation. Both approaches can offer high data governance and security, which is critical for organizations that handle sensitive information.

Ultimately, the choice between managed services and cloud computing will depend on an organization’s specific needs and goals. For organizations that require more control over their technology infrastructure, managed services may be the better choice. For organizations looking for more flexibility and scalability, cloud-based solutions may be the way to go. Regardless of the approach, organizations should seek a provider that offers a high level of service, data integration, and data warehouses to ensure they can make the most of their technology investments.

Managed vs. Platform as a Service

Managed services generally have a more limited scope and a more focused purpose than cloud computing. They are often used to supplement existing IT service delivery rather than replace it. A managed service usually has a defined scope and duration. The range includes the service type and the effort required to deliver it. The time of the contract is generally shorter than the scope. A platform as a service (PaaS) is a service that gives you access to an Application Programming Interface (API) that you can use to store your data and run specific programs, like a payroll service.

Conclusion

As you can see, managed services and cloud computing both have a lot of potential benefits, but it’s essential to know the differences between them to make the right choice for your organization. Both are effective ways to alleviate some of the pressure from your IT team and get access to resources that are not owned or managed by you. Suppose your organization is experiencing challenges managing the increasing volume of data created, the growing need for agility, or both. In that case, it might be worth analyzing the costs of managed services versus cloud computing.

The level of trust that Protected Harbor has received from its customers is evident from the fact that we have been recognized as the top cloud computing company in the US by Goodfirms. We have been rated highly among the people of the Internet because we offer a wide range of affordable cloud computing services at different levels of customization. With the wide range of cloud computing services we offer, every business can get the cloud computing services they need.

We are committed to protecting the safety and integrity of your data, no matter where it lives. Contact us today to learn more about your organization’s managed services and cloud options.

Understanding Cyber Attacks in The Cloud

Understanding Cyber Attacks in The Cloud

In today’s world of rapidly advancing technology, the need for understanding cyber-attacks in the cloud is paramount. Cloud computing has revolutionized how we store and access data, allowing faster and more efficient workflows and collaborations. However, it has also created a new avenue for cybercriminals, who can target cloud-based systems with sophisticated attacks. As such, organizations need to understand the various types of cyber-attacks that can occur in the cloud and develop strategies to protect against them.

Welcome to another episode of Uptime with Richard Luna! We are thrilled to have you with us. We explain best practices, highlight critical issues like cybersecurity in the cloud in the current threat landscape, and provide guidance on keeping safe and secure online. This blog will overview the different types of cyber-attacks in the cloud and discuss what organizations can do to safeguard their data and systems.

 

Types of Cyber Attacks in the Cloud

There are several types of cyber-attacks in the cloud, including Denial of Service (DoS), Data breaches, Digital extortion, Viral infections, Theft of data, and Access control attacks. Let’s take a closer look at each attack to understand better the risks involved.

  • DoS attacks occur when a hacker floods a website with so many requests that the site cannot keep up with the load and goes offline. A hacker who wants to take down a website may use a DoS attack. This type of attack can be launched against websites that are hosted in the cloud, as well as on-premise systems.
  • Data breaches occur when a hacker is able to gain access to sensitive data stored on cloud systems. A data breach can occur through various attack vectors, such as malicious code, malicious insiders, and improperly configured security systems.
  • Digital extortion involves hackers obtaining access to sensitive data and threatening to publish it on the internet or sell it to others if a ransom is not paid. While this type of attack can occur on-premise and in the cloud, it is more common in cloud environments due to the lower barriers to entry.
  • Viral infections occur when a hacker uploads malicious code to a cloud service, such as a file storage system, and others unknowingly download and distribute the code. This attack can spread quickly as others download and upload the infected files, creating a viral infection.
  • Thieves can steal data from a cloud system by hacking into the system or by tricking users into downloading malicious code or applications that steal data.
  • Access control attacks often work around or bypass access control measures to steal data or user credentials. Malicious actors can easily bypass access control by logging in as authorized users and using their resources after obtaining the latter.

 

How to Prevent Cloud Attacks

Given the evolving landscape of cloud cyber attacks 2023, organizations must adopt a comprehensive security strategy to safeguard their sensitive data. Recognizing that no single security measure is foolproof, a multi-layered approach involving a combination of security tools and processes is crucial. Here are essential strategies for cybersecurity in the cloud:

  • Strong Passwords: Strong passwords are essential to any security strategy, particularly in cloud environments where accounts are shared across different organizations and individuals.
    • Best Practices: Implement and enforce strong password policies for all cloud accounts. Utilize a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.
    • Regular Updates: Encourage users to update their passwords regularly to reduce the risk of unauthorized access.

 

  • Two-Factor Authentication (2FA): Two-factor authentication is another critical part of any security strategy. This feature requires users to enter a password and perform an additional verification step, such as entering a PIN or scanning a unique barcode with a smartphone. Two-factor authentication provides a significant additional layer of security against cyber-attacks by requiring two forms of authentication.
    • Additional Layer: Enforce 2FA for all cloud accounts, requiring users to provide a second verification form alongside their password.
    • Biometric Authentication: Explore options for biometric authentication to enhance security further.

 

  • Firewalls: Firewalls provide an important layer of security between an organization’s network and the internet. This centralized system can be configured to block or allow specific data packets based on their destinations and types.
    • Network Security: Deploy robust firewalls to create a secure barrier between the organization’s network and the internet.
    • Configuration Control: Configure firewalls to block or allow specific data packets based on destination and type, minimizing the attack surface.

 

  • Encryption: Organizations should use encryption for all sensitive data to prevent hackers from accessing it and can breach a system. SSL/TLS certificates are a common form of encryption cloud computing providers use to secure data between a user’s computer and a website.
    • Data Protection: Utilize encryption for all sensitive data to prevent unauthorized access. Cloud providers often use SSL/TLS certificates to secure data in transit.
    • End-to-end Encryption: Implement end-to-end encryption to protect data throughout its entire lifecycle, both at rest and in transit.

 

  • Data Audits: Data audits are essential to any security strategy, particularly in cloud environments where users’ data is stored and shared across different organizations and individuals. Conduct regular data audits to identify potential security risks and find ways to mitigate them.
    • Regular Assessment: Conduct data audits to identify and assess potential security risks within cloud environments.
    • Mitigation Strategies: Develop mitigation strategies based on audit findings to address vulnerabilities promptly.

 

  • Incident Response Plan:
    • Preparation: Develop and regularly update an incident response plan specific to cloud environments.
    • Training: Train relevant personnel to follow the incident response plan effectively during a cyber attack.

 

  • Continuous Monitoring:
    • Real-time Visibility: Implement continuous monitoring tools to provide real-time visibility into cloud infrastructure and detect suspicious activities promptly.
    • Anomaly Detection: Utilize anomaly detection mechanisms to identify deviations from normal behavior, signaling potential security threats.

 

  • Regular Security Training:
    • User Awareness: Conduct regular cybersecurity awareness training to educate users on how to prevent cyber attacks 2023 and about the latest cyber threats and best practices.
    • Phishing Awareness: Place a strong emphasis on phishing awareness to prevent users from falling victim to social engineering attacks.

By adopting these comprehensive strategies, organizations can significantly enhance their cybersecurity posture in the cloud and proactively prevent cyber-attacks. Regularly reassess and update these measures to align with emerging cyber threats and industry best practices.

 

Securely Store Your Data with Access Control

Access control systems are an essential part of any infrastructure, be it a private cloud solution, a hybrid cloud, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), or Software as a Service (SaaS). These systems provide layers of security, preventing unauthorized access to sensitive data, credit card information, and other valuable assets. Different types of access control exist, such as role-based, mandatory, or discretionary, each with its specific purpose. However, even with access control systems in place, cyber-attacks can still happen. Malware attacks, SQL injection attacks, DDoS attacks, man-in-the-middle attacks, and other malicious software can exploit weaknesses in an operating system or other parts of the infrastructure, ultimately leading to data breaches. Therefore, it is crucial to choose access control systems carefully and implement additional measures to secure your infrastructure.

 

Final Words

In conclusion, cyber-attacks in the cloud are a significant threat that organizations must be prepared to defend against. By following the above best practices, organizations can better protect against cyber-attacks in the cloud and keep sensitive data safe.

Protected Harbor offers enterprise-grade hosting, 24/7 monitoring, and high availability to keep your business online. Our data centers are U.S.-based SOC 2 certified to meet the strictest data security requirements. Our expert engineers work around the clock to keep your data safe. Our private clouds are designed to provide secure, reliable hosting of virtualized corporate data and applications. Private cloud hosting is scalable and offers high availability. It also enables data backup and recovery, as well as system redundancy.

Protected Harbor’s mission is to make hosting your business online as simple and secure as possible. Sign up now to try our services risk-free.

Protected Harbor Recognized as a Top Managed Service Provider by Design Rush

Protected Harbor Recognized as a Top Managed Service Provider

 

Protected Harbor Recognized as a Top Managed Service Provider by Design Rush

 

Today Protected Harbor was recognized as one of the Top Managed Service Providers by DesignRush, a B2B (Business to Business) marketplace for agencies. This accreditation is only given to companies that have been thoroughly researched and analyzed based on their history, vision, business model, products or services, company executives, and advisors.

“At Protected Harbor, we aim to set the standard for excellence in managed services and technology. We want to help businesses and individuals get the best-managed services, from designing their infrastructure to cybersecurity. We want to simplify the technology adoption process and allow companies to quickly make informed decisions about the future of their business technology.” – Richard Luna.

Previously, Protected Harbor was also recognized as a top cloud computing company in the US by Goodfirms.

Protected Harbor was chosen by DesignRush for demonstrating a commitment to technical excellence, innovation, and customer satisfaction while serving small to mid-size businesses.

DesignRush helps companies select the ideal firm that can best represent their brand, comprehend their objectives and collaborate successfully with them. Protected Harbor’s 90+ Net Promoter Score for their Managed IT Services, Network and Infrastructure Services, IT Help Desk, and IT Support made the company a perfect fit.

This recognition is a testament to the company’s commitment to excellence in customer service and exceptional customer support. Protected Harbor strongly emphasizes customer satisfaction and pays close attention to the needs of its existing customers. By providing high-quality security services and utilizing live chat and customer support tools, the company has improved customer satisfaction and retained its customer base.

Protected Harbor also conducts customer satisfaction surveys to ensure that it is meeting the needs of its customers and addressing any concerns they may have. Through these efforts, the company has achieved a low churn rate and maintained a high level of satisfaction among its customers.

The dedication to providing an excellent customer experience has helped it to stand out in a crowded market and solidify its position as a top-managed service provider.

Protected Harbor helps local, and national businesses use technology to solve their business problems and are committed to driving digital transformation for small and midsize businesses.

The company has over 30 years of experience deploying advanced engineering solutions centered on collaboration, cloud migration, networking, cyber security, and Managed Services. With Protected Harbor, businesses and organizations can feel confident that their data is secure and protected in the cloud.

Protected Harbor Recognized as a Top Managed Service ProviderThe award of Top Managed Service Provider by DesignRush recognizes Protected Harbor as a top IT Company and technology consultant whose forward-thinking approach to providing managed services is changing the landscape of the business technology.

With digital and technological techniques that support your company’s objectives, Protected Harbor’s IT specialists will help reduce stressful day-to-day tech issues, minimize costly downtime, and improve operational maturity.

Like many other local IT companies, Protected Harbor helps with everything from IT support, remote workforce solutions, and IT infrastructure to cloud migration, VoIP phone systems, and data center hosting.

But unlike traditional MSPs, we pride ourselves on our customer’s happiness. That’s why we ensure our 24/7/365 customer service is second to none. Whenever you need us, we’re always here. Got a problem at 2:00 am? A live person will be there to answer your call and resolve the issue before sun-up.

Protected Harbor’s approach to customer service goes beyond just solving problems and closing tickets. We aim to connect on a human level, getting to know you and your business so we can function like an extension of your team.

That is why over 90% of our business comes from client referrals, and we have a 98% customer retention rate. Protected Harbor is the last I.T. company you will ever have to hire. Contact our team today to experience what a true partnership and excellence in customer service is like.[/vc_column_text]

Is the Cloud Answer to Everything?

Is the Cloud Answer to Everything?

The cloud is a popular topic, with big and small organizations looking at cloud solutions to increase efficiency, reduce costs, and accelerate new projects. A recent survey found that 66% of businesses currently use the cloud in some capacity. But is it the answer to everything? Is the cloud the best option for your business? The quick answer is No! – but there’s more to it than that. Read on to find out if the cloud is right for you and your business or if another solution might suit you better.

We are excited to bring you another much-requested video on our series Uptime with Richard Luna. We are discussing Cloud and Is the Cloud answer all your problems. Watch the video to understand it in detail.

 

Why the Cloud is Such a Big Deal

If you think back to when you were a child, the internet probably wouldn’t have even been on your radar. It’s only been around for a few decades, so it’s not surprising that it’s still such a new concept, even though it’s become a massive part of our daily lives.

When you hear the word cloud, what do you think? Most people think of a massive server that holds all the data for an organization, storing it in a remote location. This is an oversimplification, but it gets the point across. As a business owner, you need to know what the cloud means and what it could mean for your organization.

For a good reason, the cloud has become a massive trend in recent years. It offers various benefits that traditional on-premises solutions cannot match. Hybrid cloud solutions, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), and Platform as a Service (PaaS) are just some examples of cloud offerings available to businesses. One of the significant advantages of cloud computing is the flexibility it provides. Businesses can choose between public and private clouds or even create multi-cloud environments that utilize multiple clouds to meet their specific needs.

Cloud solutions like IBM Cloud, and Protected Harbor Cloud can simplify management and reduce overhead costs, as businesses no longer have to worry about maintaining and upgrading their hardware or operating systems. Moreover, businesses can quickly scale up or down their resources as required with the cloud, making it a more cost-effective solution. These and other benefits of cloud computing have made it an attractive option for businesses of all sizes and industries.

 

Is the Cloud Right for You?

Whether or not the cloud is right for you depends on your business, needs, and how it aligns with your goals and vision for the future. If you’re unsure if the cloud is the right solution, consider the following questions: Is your organization ready for a significant change or transformation? Do you have a reliable and secure internet connection? Does your organization have a substantial amount of data? If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, the cloud might be your ideal solution.

Cloud computing services are viable options for businesses looking to modernize their IT infrastructure. However, choosing the right cloud solution depends on various factors, such as the business’s size, industry, and requirements. For instance, small business owners might benefit more from SaaS offerings that allow them to access the software through the cloud rather than investing in costly hardware and maintenance.

On the other hand, larger companies with complex IT infrastructure might find IaaS or PaaS more suitable, as they offer greater control and customization over the environment. Additionally, businesses with a hybrid cloud architecture, combining on-premises and cloud infrastructure, may require a hybrid cloud infrastructure to ensure seamless integration between the two.

Furthermore, choosing a cloud provider is also critical, and businesses must select a reliable provider such as Alibaba Cloud that offers high availability and scalability. Virtual machines and other computing services provided by the cloud can also be advantageous, allowing businesses to quickly spin up new resources or scale up existing ones to meet their demands. Ultimately, the decision of whether the cloud is right for you depends on your unique business needs and goals.

 

What Else Should You Be Considering?

While the cloud may be a good fit for your business, there are a few other things you may want to consider before making a decision. What are your security needs? If you’re storing data remotely, you must be confident that it’s secure. Being compliant with government regulations like HIPAA and GDPR is another critical factor. Finally, you’ll also want to consider your budget and ROI. If you don’t have the budget to use a cloud-based solution, you might want to look at other options.

 

Summary

The cloud is a popular solution for many businesses but isn’t the best solution for everyone. No single technology or vendor can be the answer to everything. Cloud providers are trying to solve different problems at different scales. As with any technology, the cloud has its strengths and weaknesses, and it’s essential to understand them before making decisions.

There are many Cloud service providers in the US. Among all, Protected Harbor was one of the top Cloud service providers in the US. Our cloud services include AWS Migration, Office 365 Migration, Google Cloud Migration, Hybrid Cloud, Private Cloud, and Dedicated Cloud Infrastructure.

If you’re still unsure about the Cloud or its features, contact one of our experts immediately. They’ll recommend the best-suited strategy for your business. We are also giving away a free IT Audit to help the company identify its weak points. Keep watching the video for more.

GoodFirm.co Recognizes Protected Harbor as a Top Cloud Computing Company

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GoodFirms.co Recognizes Protected Harbor as a Top Cloud Computing Company

 

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Today, Protected Harbor was recognized by GoodFirms, a leading review platform for software and service providers, as one of the Top Cloud Computing Companies in the United States.

GoodFirms is a revolutionary research and review platform with a worldwide database of software service providers. To link service providers and their relevant customers, GoodFirms analyses the company on three crucial parameters: Quality, Reliability, and Ability. Customer reviews and published interview articles are also considered for the evaluation process.

Here is what GoodFirms’ Anna Stark had to say about Protected Harbor’s IT Support and Cloud Computing Solutions:

Started in 2009, Protected Harbor delivers technology stability and durability for organizations, resulting in flawless operations of desktops, data centers, and applications. The company implements a Technology Improvement Plan (TIP) that involves industry best practices to resolve issues. The TIP offers protection with the help of unique Application Outage Avoidance (AOA) technology and support from the Support Resolution Team.

Interestingly, Protected Harbor works with organizations to solve more complex problems and be more responsive. The company focuses on direct end-user support while assuring that the company’s back-end operations like web servers and computer networking run effortlessly.

The team strives hard to resolve issues before they become problems, enabling organizations not to be worried about the technology. The company aims to turn technology back into a benefit and not a cost center. The team finds long-term solutions that help clients focus on their business processes. The clients can have reliable, durable, and secure business technology solutions with Protected Harbor.

Indeed, the Protected Harbor guard businesses and their IT operations from attacks, whether known or unknown, that include Ransomware, Malware, Viruses, and Phishing. The customers can efficiently make their business IT strong and keep their business protected and safe from ransomware attacks, viruses, useless subscriptions, phishing attacks, and end-user problems with Protected Harbour.

 

Protected Harbor aims to ensure clients achieve optimal technological productivity. The company treats clients as partners and thoughtfully listens to the client’s business and technology issues, and delivers technology solutions tailored to the client’s business requirements.

Protected Harbor offers a wide range of secure colocation solutions for healthcare organizations to handle healthcare challenges. Team Protected Harbor enables clients to protect their desktop issues such as ransomware, malware, and virus protection. Clients have complete remote access and 24 hour, 365-day support.

The unified VoIP solution and VoIP software phone system, video conferencing, and mobile app are easy to use and effortlessly protect clients’ phones. Plus, the clients can have the power of desktop QuickBooks and the security and convenience of a remote desktop connection with Protected Books. The protected data center and hosting solution virtually eliminate crashes, failures, and outages.

This one-stop technology company offers solutions that involve software, hardware infrastructure, cloud migration, disaster recovery, security, and cloud back-up. The company offers customers remote cloud access, 99.99% uptime, proactive monitoring, and private cloud backup.

The team of experts enables clients to get value from the virtual office-hosted solutions and efficiently work with businesses of all sizes to carry out business operations faster. The clients can migrate their systems to the cloud to reduce and control IT costs, enhance security and disaster preparedness, minimize maintenance, and increase the workforce’s productivity.

Consequently, the excellent cloud computing services enable Protected Harbor to gain a prestigious position amongst the renowned cloud computing companies in the United States at GoodFirms.

Apart from the services mentioned above, Protected Harbor delivers specialized IT services for small and medium-sized businesses. The certified IT engineers focus on keeping clients’ businesses going. The team builds reliable IT infrastructure with a strategic approach that drives clients’ business growth.

 

About the Author

goodfirm authorWorking as a Content Writer at GoodFirms, Anna Stark bridges the gap between service seekers and service providers. Anna’s dominant role is to figure out company achievements and critical attributes and put them into words. She strongly believes in the charm of words and leverages new approaches that work, including new concepts that enhance the firm’s identity.

Hidden Costs of the Cloud

Hidden Costs of the Cloud

What You Need to Know‍

The cloud has undoubtedly transformed the way organizations operate.

The cloud offers many benefits, including on-demand resources, scalability, and cost-efficiency. Most businesses nowadays have shifted to either a hybrid or a hybrid private cloud architecture. However, cloud adoption hasn’t been smooth for everyone.

Several hidden costs of the cloud may catch you off guard if you’re not fully aware of them. Understanding these costs is essential to budget accurately for your IT services in the long run.

Welcome to another video in our series Uptime with Richard Luna, where Richard Luna, CEO of Protected Harbor, will discuss the cloud’s actual costs. Below, we will touch on some of the hidden costs of the cloud, how they can impact your business and what you can do about it.

 

What Are the Hidden Costs of the Cloud?

As we’ve already established, the cloud has some hidden costs that many companies are unaware of. This can affect their budgeting, decision-making, and long-term strategy. Business leaders may alter their entire IT strategy based on these hidden costs. From a financial standpoint, hidden fees can include data transfer, cloud utilization, migration, and business process reengineering costs.

Data Transfer Costs – These are costs associated with transferring data between on-premise resources and cloud-based resources. Depending on where your data is stored, you may have to incur data transfer costs.

Cloud Utilization Costs– Public cloud service providers demand a fee each time a business tries to access its data. Cloud companies are betting on huge demand despite the low fees, which occasionally amount to cents per hour.

Migration Costs – Organizations migrating their applications to the cloud may incur costs for retooling legacy applications for the cloud.

Business Process Reengineering Costs– Organizations occasionally anticipate that a move to the cloud will boost overall functionality and efficiency. However, the reality is any problems that may have existed before a cloud move will persist there. The initial transformation might be finished, but continuous business modifications will still be required, increasing spending.

 

Understanding Cloud Offerings: Comparing Google Cloud Platform and Amazon Web Services

Regarding cloud offerings, two of the most popular options are Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and Amazon Web Services (AWS). Both platforms offer various computing services, including virtual machines, edge locations, and private IP addresses. However, there are some differences to be aware of. For example, GCP offers VPC peering connections that allow customers to connect to their own premises data center.

In contrast, AWS offers Amazon CloudFront, a content delivery network that can speed up website loading times. In terms of data transfer pricing, GCP charges $0.01 per GB, while AWS charges $0.09 per GB for the first 10 TB. It’s important to consider these factors when deciding which platform to migrate to the cloud and any additional data transfer charges that may apply.

 

Whats the real cost of the cloudPrivate Cloud: A Better Alternative

Richard recommends, “To overcome some of the hidden costs of the cloud, organizations can opt for the private cloud.” A private cloud is an on-premises version of the public cloud where IT organizations control access, security, and the level of scalability.

A private cloud is an isolated environment within your organization’s data center. It has its dedicated hardware, software, networking resources, and other utilities. A private cloud may incur some hidden costs. But these hidden costs are typically less than those of public cloud services.

You can also use a public-private hybrid cloud. This combines a public cloud platform and a private cloud environment. A hybrid cloud is often used to host sensitive information because it’s more secure than a public cloud. You can also host non-sensitive information on a public cloud platform while keeping your critical data private.

 

Conclusion

Many cloud providers offer their services, but not all are the same. If you want to avoid hidden costs and stay safe, you need to move to a private cloud. This way, you will have complete control over your data without worrying about any unexpected charges. With a private cloud from Protected Harbor, you can optimize your IT investments, avoid data breaches, and save money.

At Protected Harbor, we keep up with the latest technology, continuously invest in our people and infrastructure, and always look for ways to improve. We are experts in cloud implementation, partner with the biggest names in the software industry, and are dedicated to delivering a superior experience for every customer. If you’re looking to opt or migrate to a private or hybrid cloud or even other managed IT services, our experts are there to help you.

Contact us today for a free IT audit and cloud consulting!

Keeping Your SaaS Secure:

keeping your saas secure

Keeping Your SaaS Secure: 6 Things You Can Do Now to Prepare

Security is one of the top concerns among Security as a Service (SaaS) customers. It’s a problem that many SaaS vendors struggle with, and for a good reason.

As more businesses move their processes to the cloud, hackers see this as an opportunity to exploit security vulnerabilities and steal sensitive data. For this reason, keeping your SaaS secure is no longer just about staying compliant with regulations like the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). It’s now about protecting your customers and your business from cyber-attacks. With so much on the line, it’s important now more than ever to take the steps needed to protect your SaaS from potential threats in the future.

How secure is your SaaS? How prepared are you for a cybersecurity attack? You can find out with our free whitepaper! Inside, you’ll learn all about the major cyber threats of 2022, such as the evolution of ransomware, the rise of cloud apps, and more. You’ll also find out the biggest challenges facing today’s SaaS businesses and how to overcome these issues. Finally, you’ll get actionable insights and tips you can use today to keep your SaaS secure.

This blog post in particular will outline the six simple ways to keep your SaaS secure while reducing operational risks and liability.

 

So, what exactly is SaaS Security?

When we talk about SaaS security, we’re referring to the various ways you can protect your software against threats. This can include software and hardware solutions that help prevent and identify cyber-attacks. When it comes to SaaS security, there are three main components you need to think about: data, infrastructure, and people.

Data security refers to the privacy and security controls that prevent unauthorized parties from accessing sensitive data. Infrastructure security refers to the resilience of the hardware and networks that power your SaaS. People security refers to the policies and procedures that prevent employees from unintentionally introducing vulnerabilities into your software. Essentially, SaaS security is all about keeping your customers’ data safe and your own.

 

6 SaaS Security Best Practices

Whether you’re testing a new tool or releasing a new feature, it’s crucial to consider your SaaS security. To maintain the security and privacy of your data, keep the following best practices in mind.

1. Encrypt your Data

Your technological stack’s top priority should be encryption at all layers. In the event of a breach, effective encryption makes sure that consumer data isn’t quickly publicly disclosed.

Customers’ concerns about their data protection are growing as high-profile leaks like the Cambridge Analytica incident occur more frequently. By discussing your encryption policies, reassure your clients that your solution always protects their sensitive billing information.

Use one of the many popular encryption techniques to ensure that the information you rely on isn’t kept in plain text.

2. Give Priority to Privacy

Most compliance and regulatory processes demand privacy and security declarations, but that isn’t their only use. It teaches your team and customers how to handle important data by developing a strong statement for your product.

Develop your privacy policy by defining the specific details that need to be included in it with the help of your development and legal teams.

3. Educate Your Clients

By 2020, 95% of cloud security problems will be the clients’ fault, predicts a Gartner study. Make sure you actively reach out to individuals whenever you are onboarding new clients or send critical updates to existing ones to explain how this may affect their security.

Most customers are unaware of the implications of this shift toward a totally cloud-based architecture, which is being made by an increasing number of SaaS providers. Ensure your consumers understand how to protect their information to reduce security concerns and limit risks.

Keeping Your SaaS Secure middle4. Backup User Data in Several Locations and Isolated Backups

Effective client data management is crucial because many firms aren’t prepared for impending data breaches. By creating multiple copies of your data, you can assure that no one system failure will compromise your security.

Many cloud platforms on which SaaS businesses rely on as a part of their product will offer this functionality. Still, you must be vigilant about backups to prevent potentially catastrophic losses of customer data.

5. Use More Robust Passwords

Many people still use the same password for each login, even though they know the risks involved. By requesting stronger passwords from users when they create accounts, you can stop them from exposing your data to possible cyber criminals. Consider establishing case-sensitivity rules and authentication mechanisms.

An emphasis on security will only become more crucial as the subscription economy develops. As your business expands, always re-evaluate your present procedures to ensure that you are maintaining compliance.

6. Speak With a Cyber-security Company

Third-party security organizations can provide essential industry knowledge about what you need to do to keep your platform secure. Their testing procedures ensure that your infrastructure, network, and software are always safe. These third-party suppliers can assist you in developing plans for if and when a breach occurs while you are building your product.

 

Conclusion

Making sure the user data in your SaaS product is secure requires more than a one-time effort; it must become integrated into your company’s culture. The first step is to select the best SaaS cloud security solution for you. Implementing new security measures is the second phase, an ongoing activity you must regularly perform to keep up with the always-changing threat landscape.

Download our white paper, “Cybersecurity Risks of 3rd Party Cloud-Apps in 2022” to understand the SaaS and cloud cyber-threat landscape in 2022 and how you can mitigate those risks. Also, keep reading our blogs for more information on cybersecurity.

Cloud Application Migration Fear

cloud application migration fear

Cloud Application Migration Fear

Many organizations fear migrating their applications to the cloud because it can be an extremely challenging and complex task. This process will require proper planning, effort, and time to succeed.

The security measures and practices that organizations have built for their on-premise infrastructure do not coincide with what they require in the cloud, where everything is deeply integrated.

Before streamlining your workflow with cloud computing, you must know the most challenging security risks and how to avoid them. Let’s explore how organizations should approach the security aspects of cloud migration, from API integration to access control and continuous monitoring.

This article will highlight some of the organizations’ most common fears while moving from on-premise infrastructure to a cloud environment.

 

What is Cloud Migration?

Cloud migration is the process of moving data, programs, and other business components into a cloud computing environment.

A business can carry out a variety of cloud migrations.

One typical model for cloud migration involves moving data and applications from an on-premises data center to the cloud. Still, it is also possible to move data and applications across different cloud platforms or providers. Cloud-to-cloud migration is the term for this second situation.

Another kind of migration is reverse cloud migration, commonly called cloud repatriation. From one cloud platform to another, data or applications are transferred in this case.

Cloud migration, however, might not be suitable for everyone.

Scalable, reliable, and highly available cloud environments are feasible. These, however, are not the only considerations that will influence your choice.

 

Why is Security in the Cloud the Biggest Fear for Organizations?

Security is the biggest challenge organizations face because public clouds offer shared resources among different users and use virtualization. The ease of data sharing in the cloud creates serious security concerns regarding data leakage and loss.

The major risk in any infrastructure is neglecting security vulnerabilities due to a lack of expertise, resources, and visibility. Most

providers contain various processing and cloud storage services. Therefore, it’s easy for hackers to expose data via poorly configured access controls, data protection measures, and encryption.

 

How to Reduce Cloud Migration Security Risks middleMost Common Exposure Points for Cloud-based Applications

Overcoming cloud migration challenges before they arise can help any organization to migrate smoothly and save them from potential cyber threats. But first, we need to understand the weak links and exposure points that can put security at risk.

Let’s discuss the weakest links that cause cloud application migration fears:

1. Data Theft Causes Unauthorized Access

Providing administrative access to cloud vendors poses serious threats to the organization. Criminals are gaining access to programs like Office 365 through installations that give them administrative rights. In fact, very recently a phishing campaign leveraging a legitimate organization’s Office 365 infrastructure for email management has surfaced on the cyber scam scene.

Hackers are always evolving their phishing tactics; everything they do is considered smarter and more sophisticated.

If criminals get access to users’ cloud credentials, they can access the CSP’s (Cloud Solution Provider’s) services to gain additional resources. They could even leverage those cloud resources to target the company’s administrative users and other organizations using the same service provider.

Basically, an intruder who obtains CSP admin cloud credentials can use them to access the organization’s systems and data.

2. Third-party Products Comes With Security Risks

Organizations outsource information security management to third-party vendors. It reduces the internal cybersecurity burden but generates its own set of security risks. In other words, the cybersecurity burden shifts from an organization’s internal operations onto its third-party vendors. However, leveraging third-party services or products may come with compliance, business continuity, mobile device risks, etc.

Last year, the Russian Intelligence Service compromised SolarWinds, a famous monitoring tool based on open-source software. They had created a backdoor within the coding and submitted it into the base product. Hackers used a regular software update to inject malicious coding into Orion’s software for cyberattacks.

Vulnerable applications are entry points for cybercriminals. They are always in search of weak spots to infiltrate the system. Applications are used in every industry for better workflow and management. However, there is a need to protect these applications by limiting their access and implementing available patches for better security. Frequent updating of applications and systems helps to protect your IT infrastructure from potential attacks.

3. Hackers Can Compromise Vulnerable VPN Devices

VPNs (Virtual Private Network’s) provide an encrypted connection that hides your online data from attackers and allows businesses to protect their private cloud resources. Many cloud applications need a VPN to transfer data from on-premises infrastructures to the cloud. VPNs are configured to operate one way, but they are often bidirectional. This often opens your organization up to an attack occurring in the cloud service provider.

One such attack has been observed where cybercriminals exploit VPN servers’ vulnerabilities to encrypt the network with a new ransomware variant. By exploiting unpatched VPN applications, hackers can remotely access critical information, such as usernames or passwords, and allows them to log in to the network manually.

Reconfiguring a VPN to access a newly relocated app in the cloud can be disruptive and complicated for its users. Most people don’t use VPNs for cloud application migration because they don’t trust them.

It’s better to install on-site hardware, build VPNs’ deployment on that hardware, migrate them into the on-site deployment, and then move the VMs (Virtual Machines) into a data center. This can be achieved by enabling transparent, unfiltered connectivity between environments. Enterprise cloud VPN can achieve this configuration between a cloud and on-premises networks.

4. Accidental Exposure of User Credentials

Cybercriminals generally leverage cloud applications as a pretext in their phishing attacks. With the rapid use of cloud-based emails and document-sharing services, employees have become habitual of receiving emails with links asking them to confirm their credentials before accessing a particular site or document.

This type of confirmation makes it easy for intruders to get employees’ credentials for their cloud services. Therefore, accidental cloud credentials exposure is a major concern for organizations because it can compromise the security and privacy of cloud-based data and resources.

5. Lack of Secure API

Using API (Application User Interface) in the cloud allows organizations to implement better controls for their applications and systems. However, using insecure APIs can come with grave security risks. The vulnerabilities that exist within these APIs can provide an entry point for intruders to steal critical data, manipulate services, and do reputational harm.

Insecure APIs can cause security misconfigurations, broken authentications, exposed data, broken function-level authorization, and asset mismanagement. The most common example of an insecure API is the Facebook-Cambridge Analytical Scandal which allowed for Cambridge Analytica to access Facebook user data.

 

How to Reduce Cloud Migration Security Risks?

Organizations can take various steps to mitigate cloud migration security risks. Here are some recommendations on how to migrate your applications to the cloud.

1. Develop a Plan

Outline the expertise, resources, and tooling you need to get started. Use automated tools supporting optimization and data discovery analysis to define the right migration method for your company.

2. Start Small

To reduce the fear and accelerate cloud adoption, start with an automatic workload lift and shift over in small portions. It helps to introduce cloud benefits and security risks. Moreover, this approach reduces uncertainty and lets organizations benefit from infrastructure savings.

3. Leverage Business Units to Drive Cloud Adoption

Utilize your business units to promote cloud adoption by investing in Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). This does not require any rewriting of your applications. A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) already exists and is running in the cloud which lets you decommission on-premises CRM and is easier than full on-board migration.

4. Make a Set of Security Standards

Develop baseline security standards by collaborating with your governance team. The list must include cloud workload vulnerability posture, control plane configuration, and cloud infrastructure privilege assignment.

5. Invest in Cloud Security Management

Organizations should monitor their cloud security posture from the control plane to asset configuration. When your cloud deployments increase in complexity and numbers, a service tracking all configuration settings becomes valuable to detect any misconfigurations causing security vulnerabilities.

 

Ready to Migrate Your Applications to the Cloud?

Most organizations lack the experience and confidence to migrate to the cloud fearing the associated risks that come with it. The reason is that they don’t have the right time and resources in place to facilitate the move.

Leveraging partners and service providers can help to overcome those fears and make the cloud application migration smoother for your organization. With the support of Protected Harbor

Cloud Migration Services, our clients can transform their existing apps and achieve “future-ready” business outcomes. These services range from planning to execution. Our comprehensive strategy is supported by the understanding that successful modernization uptake requires a diverse blend of suitable solutions with a range of risk and reward profiles.

Our enterprise application migration services offer thorough, extensive, reliable procedures for transferring sizable application portfolios to cloud platforms, and they are easily scalable from one to many apps. We can assist you with application inventory, assessment, code analysis, migration planning, and execution using our tried-and-true tools.

We provide deep industry expertise and a robust set of advanced tools. Experts at Protected Harbor migrate your applications to the cloud and help you increase and optimize the productivity and flexibility of your workforce. Visit here to get more information about Protected Harbor’s cloud services.

Eye Care Leaders Data Breach Caused by Cloud EHR Vendor. Don’t be the Next.

eye care leaders data breach caused by cloud ehr endor dont be the next

 

Eye Care Leaders Data Breach Caused by Cloud EHR Vendor. Don’t be the Next.

Data Breach Caused by Cloud EHR VendorThe databases and system configuration files for Eye Care Leaders, a manufacturer of cloud-based electronic health record and practice management systems for eye care practitioners, were recently hacked.

What Happened

The breach reportedly compromised the organizations’ cloud-based myCare solution, with hackers obtaining access to the electronic medical record, patient information, and public health information (PHI) databases on or around December 4, 2021, according to breach notification letters provided by some of the affected practices. The hacker then erased the databases and system configuration files.

When the breach was discovered, the company promptly locked its networks and initiated an investigation to avoid additional unauthorized access. That investigation is still underway, and it’s unclear how much patient data was exposed. However, it’s possible that sensitive data was seen and exfiltrated before the database was deleted. Patients’ names, dates of birth, medical record numbers, health insurance information, Social Security numbers, and personal health information regarding care received at eye care offices were all stored in the databases.

More than 9,000 ophthalmologists use the Durham, NC-based company’s products. It’s unclear how many providers have been affected at this time. Summit Eye Associates, situated in Hermitage, Tennessee, has revealed that it was hacked and that the protected health information of 53,818 patients was potentially stolen. Evergreen Health, a Kings County Public Hospital District No. 2 division, has also acknowledged that patient data has been compromised. According to reports, the breach affected 20,533 people who got eye care at Evergreen Health. The breach has been confirmed by Allied Eye Physicians & Surgeons in Ohio, which has revealed that the data of 20,651 people was exposed.

The records of 194,035 people were exposed due to the breach at Regional Eye Associates, Inc. and Surgical Eye Center of Morgantown in West Virginia. Central Vermont Eye Care (30,000 people) recently reported a data breach affecting EHRs. However, HIPAA Journal has not been able to establish whether the cyberattack caused the data loss at Central Vermont Eye Care on Eye Care Leaders.

 

Confidential Information Exposed

In this distressing incident, Eyecare Leaders, a prominent eye care technology company, experienced a severe data breach, compromising the sensitive patient information of numerous Retina Consultants of Carolina patients. The breach has raised significant concerns about the security and privacy of patients’ medical records and personal data.

Eyecare Leaders, known for providing comprehensive technology solutions to eyecare practices, play a crucial role in managing and safeguarding sensitive information within the healthcare industry. However, this breach has exposed vulnerabilities within their systems, potentially leading to unauthorized access and misuse of patient data.

The breach, possibly a ransomware attack, highlights the pressing need for robust cybersecurity measures in the healthcare sector, urging organizations like Eyecare Leaders to strengthen their data protection protocols and mitigate the risk of future breaches. Meanwhile, Retina Consultants of Carolina patients are advised to monitor their accounts, remain vigilant against potential identity theft, and seek guidance from healthcare providers to ensure the security of their confidential information.

 

Update

Over the last two weeks, the number of eye care providers affected by the hack has increased. The following is a list of eye care practitioners who have been identified as being affected:

Affected Eye Care Provider Breached Records
Regional Eye Associates, Inc. & Surgical Eye Center of Morgantown in West Virginia 194,035
Shoreline Eye Group in Connecticut 57,047
Summit Eye Associates in Tennessee 53,818
Finkelstein Eye Associates in Illinois 48,587
Moyes Eye Center, PC in Missouri 38,000
Frank Eye Center in Kansas 26,333
Allied Eye Physicians & Surgeons in Ohio 20,651
EvergreenHealth in Washington 20,533
Sylvester Eye Care in Oklahoma 19,377
Arkfeld, Parson, and Goldstein, dba Ilumin in Nebraska 14,984
Associated Ophthalmologists of Kansas City, P.C. in Missouri 13,461
Northern Eye Care Associates in Michigan 8,000
Ad Astra Eye in Arkansas 3,684
Fishman Vision in California 2,646
Burman & Zuckerbrod Ophthalmology Associates, P.C. in Michigan 1,337
Total 522,493

Data Breach Caused by Cloud EHR Vendor smallProtected Harbor’s Take On The Matter

There are more than 1,300 eye care practices in the United States alone. And with more than 24 million Americans affected by some form of visual impairment, the demand for eye care services continues to grow.  In response to these growing needs, we have seen an increase in cloud-based electronic health record management software solutions to streamline operations while increasing efficiency and security.

Unfortunately, this also means that cybercriminals see the eye care industry as a prime target for hackers because their information is so sensitive and accessible. That’s why you must know which cloud EHR vendors were hacked recently.

Protected Harbor’s 5 ways to prevent unauthorized access to your company data:

  1. Strong Password Policy– Having your users add symbols, numbers, and a combination of characters to their passwords makes them more difficult to crack. Having a minimal amount of characters and changing it periodically (every 60 or 90 days) ensures that outdated passwords aren’t reused for years, making it much easier to get unwanted access to the account.
  2. MFA– Multi-factor authentication is a great approach to ensure you only access the account. You will need another device (usually your mobile device) nearby in addition to your usual login and password since you will be required to enter a code that will be produced instantly.
  3. Proactive Monitoring- Preventing unauthorized access is the initial step, but monitoring login attempts and user behaviors can also provide insight into how to prevent it best. For example, if you have logs of failed login attempts for a single user. You can launch an inquiry to see whether the user merely forgot their password or if someone is attempting to breach the account.
  4. IP Whitelisting- IP Whitelisting compares the user’s IP address to a list of “allowed” IP addresses to determine whether or not this device is authorized to access the account. If your firm only uses one or a limited number of IP addresses to access the internet, as is usually the case, you can add a list of IP addresses that are granted access. All other IPs will be sent to a page that isn’t allowed.
  5. SSO (Single Sign-On)- If your firm has a centralized user directory, using it to acquire access makes things more accessible and more manageable for you. You’ll have to remember one password, and if something goes wrong, your network administrator can deactivate all of your applications at once.

Richard Luna, CEO of Protected Harbor, stated: Unfortunately, this is how things will be in the future. The development tools used to create websites and mobile applications were created in the 1990s. Data transferability, or the ability to move data from one device to another, was a critical concern back then. The emphasis back then was on data proliferation. FTP comes to mind as a secure method with no encryption. Authentication was designed for discerning between good actors, not to harden data and protect against data theft because all data exchanges were between good actors back then. Now that we live in a different environment, we may expect more data breaches unless security is built into data transfer protocols rather than bolted on as an afterthought.

We’ve been helping businesses respond to these attacks for some time, including ransomware attacks and cross-pollinating destructive IP attacks across numerous access points and multiple AI use. If a company has 50 public IPs and we’re proactive monitoring the services behind them, and a bad actor assaults one of them, ban them from all entry points in all systems, even if it involves writing a synchronized cron job across firewalls or other protection devices. Add in artificial intelligence (AI) and comprehensive application monitoring, and a corporation has the tools to detect and respond to such threats quickly.

Final Thoughts

Data security isn’t a one-time or linear process. You must invest in software vendors, ongoing resources, time, and effort to ensure data security against unwanted access.

Cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated every day, and they are employing cutting-edge technologies to target businesses and get illicit data access.

As the number of data breaches rises, you must become more attentive. It’s critical that your company implements concrete security measures and that each employee prioritizes cybersecurity.

If you’d want us to conduct an IT security audit on your current security policies, we’ll work with you to ensure that you’re well-protected against unauthorized data access and other cyber risks. Contact us today!