A Look at BYOD in 2016

Happy 2016! It’s a new year, and a time for fresh resolutions to improve your life over the next 12 months, whether that involves running a marathon, getting a new job or taking that trip abroad you’ve been putting off. But for businesses, those New Year’s resolutions should be expressly focused on stronger security. With data breaches, email hacks and password thefts becoming more and more commonplace – and each cyberattack casting wider nets of victims – this is one resolution that can’t be allowed to fall through. This is especially true for organizations adopting BYOD and mobile-friendly policies. Just as developers have taken a “mobile first” approach to creating new apps – designing and optimizing apps from the ground up for mobile viewing and touchscreen interfaces – companies have begun taking the same approach to how their employees operate, whether it’s by allowing them to use their own personal devices in the workplace or utilizing either personal or company-owned devices while working remotely. As CIO.com points out, it’s important that this strategy pays special attention to security. Integrating more wireless and mobile devices into your company may make employees’ lives easier and more convenient, but it can open up serious potential security vulnerabilities if the proper precautions aren’t in place. A secure remote access VPN paired with cybersecurity policies like multi-factor authentication can help defend mobile communications – and protect the personal and corporate data that those communications send back and forth – from external threats. A New Year’s Resolution for Stronger Mobile Security As BNDA notes in its top 10 IT predictions for 2016, more than half...

A Closer Look at Cloud VPNs

Virtual Private Networks as a Service (VPNaaS), Managed Security Service Providers (MSSP) and Cloud Remote Access are different solutions addressing the same market requirement – the ability for remote employees to securely access corporate networks via the Internet with a managed solution.  Many enterprises have realized the benefits of using cloud services in other areas of their IT infrastructure. As a result, they no longer want to absorb the costs and management effort involved in hosting their own VPN gateways, especially ones with large numbers of remote endpoints. Striking a balance between giving remote employees the flexibility they desire while ensuring sensitive company data remains secure is admittedly a fine line to walk. Enterprises have faced that challenge for several years now as they’ve wrestled with the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) movement. Factoring the cloud into the equation only compounds the complexity of the situation. That’s why many companies today are outsourcing the operation of the VPN to a cloud solutions provider such as HOSTING. However, not all VPNs are created equal, and enterprises need to carefully examine what a provider is offering. What to look for Be sure the provider offers simple, yet efficient management of your cloud-based VPN. For example, centrally managed VPNs give administrators the ability to easily set up, add or dele te users as needed. With this approach, all configuration parameters are centrally stored. This approach makes it substantially easier for end users to establish connections while making it nearly impossible for employees to bypass or manipulate them. Will end users need to reestablish a secure network connection each time their connection channel changes? If the...

Expert Q&A: Establishing a Secure Data Center and Cloud with Remote Access

*Editor’s Note: This is Part One of an article that originally appeared in The Data Center Journal’s  Industry Perspective Column By: Rainer Enders, VPN Expert and CTO, Americas, at NCP engineering: Industry Perspective: What are some of the main security concerns for data center managers today? Rainer Enders: The evolution of modern data centers, while beneficial for many reasons, is exposing serious security pain points along the way. For one, as data centers grow in size to keep up with enterprise computing needs, it becomes increasingly difficult for IT managers to adequately protect all corporate assets, which include everything from data and documentation to software and supplies. As capacity expands, data center managers are finding it harder to maintain critical IT compliance and security measures, such as managing and de-provisioning privileged user access, and running compliance reports that are growing in both depth and volume. Additionally, with the rising popularity of virtualized and cloud environments, data center managers are tasked with baking security into all compute, network, storage and hypervisor layers. This is a considerably difficult task, in light of the numerous emerging attack vectors that constantly increase in sophistication, such as ever-morphing advanced persistent threats (APTs) that are compromising critical corporate information. IP: What specific security challenges arise as companies outsource to the cloud and rely on remote services with increasing frequency? RE: The most critical security challenges that arise in cloud deployments are compromises to remote access connections—in the form of session-hijacking attacks, for example—and compromises of cloud-hosted resources, such as virtual machines, from within the hosted provider network. Insufficient security architectures and controls in operator networks can cause...

NCP engineering Provides Joe the CIO with the Ideal VPN Solution

You might remember Joe the CIO, the paper CIO who is searching for ways to provide secure and efficient remote access to his company. When we last saw Joe, he was tackling remote access issues related to the cloud. Now he’s back, and this time, looking for a VPN solution that would enable his company’s employees to access the corporate network no matter their location or device. Plus, he needs this technology to integrate with his organization’s existing security infrastructure. Check out today’s video for more on what Joe’s looking for in a VPN and how NCP engineering helped him find the ideal solution....

Cloud computing without VPN is security risk, Part 2

By Bernd Reder Let’s revisit Tuesday’s post on cloud computing and VPNs, diving deeper into how organizations can ensure their employees are using the cloud securely. The answer is, via a VPN (Virtual Private Network). This applies to any cloud computing environment – be it public, private or the popular hybrid cloud models. The VPN solution should offer the greatest possible flexibility, including support for IPsec and SSL and the capability to enable seamless roaming between various communication media (such as LAN and Wi-Fi) . Furthermore, it is essential that the VPN solution enables an organization’s IT administrators to centrally manage all clients and components of the VPN infrastructure. Cloud VPNs instead of Do-it-yourself VPNs However, many organizations are not equipped to establish a company-wide VPN on their own and instead need a service provider to take on this task, either by providing a Virtual Private Network as a Service (VPNaaS) or remote access out of the cloud. Either of these solutions provides an alternative to the do-it-yourself VPN approach. Rather, cloud VPNs enable employees of a company to securely access all network resources in the cloud environment – applications, data and storage capacities – from anywhere. When considering cloud VPNs, organizations should consider a service that supports all end-devices that are used throughout the company – from desktops, notebooks, tablet PCs to smartphones. Ultimately, no matter which option a company takes to ensure secure cloud access, the organization reaps the benefits of the cloud and lowered IT costs.    ...