C3 Group Presents: How To Beat Cybercriminals

5 years ago | by Chris O'Brien

As a way to combat the ever growing cyber threats businesses and organisations are vulnerable to, C3 Group recently hosted a Cyber Security focused, informational event at Pacific Bay Resort. Here’s how it went down:

Like most great start up stories, C3 Group began in a garage over 20 years ago. Known then as John Hood Electronic Services, it was a business devoted to building and fixing computers. As time and technology progressed, so too did the company, renaming to Coffs Coast Computers, and moving in the direction of an ICT Managed Services Provider (MSP). Now known as C3 Group, we are the biggest MSP on the Coffs Coast, and have over 30 employees. Our services are offered nation-wide, with the majority of our clients along the East Coast, spanning from the Gold Coast, right down to Melbourne.

Using tech, and being at risk of falling victim to cybercrime, come hand-in-hand – and that goes for all users, whether consuming tech at home, or using for business. While home-users need to be wary and employ protection and preventative measures where possible, statistics show that businesses (particularly Small to Medium Businesses (SMBs)) are greater targets than anyone else. Because business data is generally more critical in nature, and likely confidential, the loss or public release of this data could have devastating effects on businesses; not to mention the downtime and recovery costs associated with being attacked. Nowadays, cybercriminals strategically target SMBs with more malicious attacks, such as ransomware. As the name suggests, ransomware is a cyber-attack that encrypts all of the data in your systems, and holds it at ransom until you pay the requested amount of funds – and even then, there is no guarantee you’ll get your data back.

As cyber threats increase, so does our vulnerability; and in today’s technology driven world, we, as businesses, really are more vulnerable than ever. In the last year alone, Australia has had the highest increase in cyber-attacks than any other country, and with SMBs being one of cyber criminals’ biggest targets, we wanted to give business owners and managers the opportunity to come to an event where they could learn about the cyber-attacks we are exposed to, and what we can do to better protect our businesses, assets and people. And so, we hosted C3 Group Presents: How to Beat Cybercriminals at Pacific Bay Resort. An event focussed on all things cybersecurity; including business protection and disaster recovery.

We were lucky enough to be joined by a number of guest speakers, including our major (and some of the worlds leading) Security Vendors, as well as Telstra’s Threat Intelligence Manager, Chris Mohan, who was our very informative and engaging keynote speaker.

Chris has been in the IT / Security sector for over 20 years. The experience and knowledge he possesses in relation to cyber security is second to none! Being immersed in the latest threats, and combatting them accordingly is something he does everyday – passing this knowledge and first-hand experience onto the businesses that attended our event (including ourselves) was invaluable.

Above: Chris Mohan

Representatives from our back-up & business continuity vendor, Datto, also joined us for the event. James Hatt, Dattos’ Channel Sales Engineer, and Jay Isiki, from Dattos’ Technical Resources, both presented on business continuity solutions, which allow businesses to quickly continue operations in the event of a disaster (whether that be a natural disaster, or a disaster in the form of a cyber-attack). James & Jay simulated a ‘disaster’ by getting guests from the crowd to physically destroy a laptop (which was a lot of fun!). They then showed exactly how Datto works by spinning those laptops up virtually, using a Datto appliance, in seconds. This form of back-up and business continuity is essential for businesses to ensure their data is completely protected from the likes of cybercriminals. It also eliminates costs associated with business downtime, which can sometimes be the biggest impact of falling victim to cybercrime.

Above: James & Jay from Datto

Greg Williams, Sales Engineer from our endpoint security vendor, Webroot, was also one of our guest speakers. Greg presented industry insights in relation to cyber-attack statistics, and outlined the real threats that SMBs face, and specified the simple ways to combat those. He helped attendees understand what endpoint security was; essentially being the security on your user devices (laptops, tablets etc). Every device we use provides an entry point for threats. With business operations relying heavily on staff utilising their devices, both at work and at home, it is crucial that superior protection be put on these devices, as without it, threats have the ability to infiltrate your systems, with potentially catastrophic results.

Above: Greg Williams from Webroot

Our gateway security vendor, WatchGuard, also participated in our event. David Higgens, WatchGuard’s Regional Director, and Matthew See, Watchguard’s Pre-Sales Systems Engineer, represented WatchGuard, with David presenting on cyber-crime from a malware perspective, highlighting the negative consequences this attack in particular has from a business point of view, and further steps any business can take to reduce their vulnerability. David also introduced Gateway Security, which WatchGuard provides in the form of a physical or virtual appliance, that sits between your network and the internet. It filters all traffic that comes in and out of your network, providing real-time protection against network threats, including spyware, SQL injections, cross-site scripting and buffer overflows. Being that accessing the internet is a daily requirement for most businesses, having gateway protection to provide safe browsing is essential.

Above: David from Watchguard

Cisco, our web security provider, was represented on the day by Nigel Stewart, their Security Sales Specialist, who helped attendees understand how Cisco can help protect businesses from ransomware threats using a multi-faceted defence architecture, protecting users both inside and outside of their network. Web security is cloud based security, delivering protection to any device, anywhere it’s used. Many of todays cyber attacks, including ransomware, are remotely executed viruses from websites (domains) – Cisco’s web security scans every domain name before it’s converted into an IP address, which means that it can block malicious websites, preventing command and control call-backs, which disables virus attempts that aim to compromise your systems; ergo, safe browsing for your business! Nigel also outlined how ransomware is the most profitable malware in history, and the way it has progressed from attacks based around stealing information and maintaining long-term access to systems and resources of victims, to the highly profitable, stealthy extortion of data, in ransom based attacks.

Above: Nigel from Cisco

Check out more pics from our event on our Facebook Page 🙂

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