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Dodging the Next Hack with Dell Security: Wrap Up of NRF’s BIG Show in New York

Back from NYC, where I attended last week’s National Retail Federation annual conference, “The Big Show.”It’s been a long time since I’ve been to a major event like this one, but retail continues to be important to SonicWall and is now part of what I do here at SonicWall Security, particularly for our SonicWall network security offerings.

So what’s new in the retail industry? Judging from all I saw, tons, of course. Retailers are all in on getting the most out of their brick-and-mortar locations as well as their various online and social outlets. Multichannel and omnichannel are retail’s new normal. New technologies continue to emerge, starting with information technology, which drives the customer experience with data analytics, to in-store beacons and other Internet of Things devices, store, website, and fulfillment design, POS systems, targeted marketing the list goes on and on, testament to the hundreds of vendors exhibiting at the NRF show.

We had plenty of visitors to the SonicWall Security booth, and good conversations with all. Some visitors and customers joined us for happy hour and a very elegant dinner Monday evening at Colicchio & Sons, in what we used to call the Meatpacking District when I called New York my home. A part of Manhattan that was almost desolate in the evening has become very much alive. The dinner gave me a chance to listen to what customers were thinking and providing a SonicWall perspective on how we can help.

You’d think that with all the attention to hacks and breaches of major retailers, security would be a major focus of an event like this, but I didn’t find that to be the case, and was, quite frankly, surprised. Our presentation by Kent Shuart, Dodging the Next Hack, How to Protect Your Business, was one of only two conference sessions with a security focus. You can read more about Kent’s presentation in SC Magazine. Of special note is Kent’s point that small and medium size retailers may be an even bigger target in 2916 than their larger retail counterparts. Many of these small and medium sized retailers have not updated their protections while hackers continue to get more sophisticated. The black market value of credit card records is such that even a small business’s account data can be a major hack windfall.

Me, I don’t believe that the retail industry doesn’t want to talk security. I think that the industry as a whole understands that without a secure network infrastructure, the customer and business data that is their lifeblood is at risk. Whether in a store or online, businesses large and small need solid, secure, scalable, beyond-PCI-compliant network security that doesn’t just protect them from cyber criminals, but gives them a leg up on their competition.

Although the booth was small the message was big: SonicWall would like to be your trusted partner in all things IT. We can help build your retail business in a secure way without breaking the bank. Learn more about our retail solutions, or visit us online.

iPower Technologies Arrests Hidden Malware from Body Cameras with SonicWall Firewalls

Note: This is a guest blog by Jarrett Pavao CEO iPower Technologies Inc., a Premier Partner for SonicWall Security, in South Florida.

Every day viruses, malware and trojans infect IT infrastructure through a growing number of mobile devices. With the growth of Internet of Things (IoT), this threat is rapidly increasing. We are faced with viruses potentially infiltrating almost every connected device – even brand-new law enforcement body cameras.

That’s right, even the people sworn to protect are exposed to these threats. Here at iPower Technologies, we never ceased to be amazed at the lengths that the bad guys will go to break into networks. That’s why it’s important that organizations have comprehensive network security that protects their associates whether they are working in the field, at home or in the office. As more of our everyday devices become “smart” and “connected”, they bring great convenience to our private and professional lives, but also provide an access point to infect entire networks and wreak havoc. This potential threat may even come from new equipment straight out of the box.

As the CEO of iPower Technologies, my team based in Boca Raton recently discovered malware on the body cameras used by one of our law enforcement clients. As a SonicWall Security Premium Partner, we follow strict protocols and we regularly audit and scan our clients’ IT infrastructure and endpoint devices, including body cameras used by our law enforcement customers. With SonicWall next-generation firewalls, we were able to detect the virus before it infected the entire network and potentially put critical data at risk. These cameras leverage geolocation/GPS capabilities, meaning that the malware could be used to track law enforcement locations.

Discovery: Conficker Worm

We discovered the malware during testing of body camera equipment for one of our law-enforcement clients. iPower engineers connected the USB camera to one of our computers. When he did that, multiple security systems on our test environment were alerted to a new threat. It turned out to be a variant of the pervasive Conficker worm and we immediately quarantined it. A second camera was connected to a virtual lab PC with no antivirus. The SonicWall next-generation firewall immediately notified iPower of the virus’ attempt to spread on the LAN and blocked the virus’ from communicating with command-and-control servers on the public internet.

Prevention

Like body armor that peace officers wear, taking precautions and preventive measures is the best defense to stopping and limiting damage from attacks. Fortunately for our clients, my iPower team has the expertise to recognize active threats along with the support of the  SonicWall Threat Research team to prevent successful attacks. In this specific case, the threat was stopped before it could do any damage and an alert for the Confiker worm was issued.

Any network with a properly deployed  SonicWall next-gen firewall would have contained the attack to a local device, such as the USB port, and not to the entire network.

Sonicwall Next Generation firewalls have multiple security features including the ability to inspect encrypted traffic, and leverage deep packet inspection (DPI) technology. See the diagram below for an example of how to prevent a virus or worm like Conficker from spreading from a PC to your servers:

Examine Smart Devices before Deploying

It’s a matter of policy for us at iPower to test all equipment before we install on a client’s network. If you don’t have a test environment – or have access to one – I strongly suggest that you make the investment. It can pay for itself in preventing embarrassing events at the client site, as well as increase internal staff knowledge that can then be applied in the real world. So do test every device you plan to install or connect to your client’s network.

Make that sure testing is a matter of policy by having a strict written policy regarding the implementation of any new hardware or software. Test any new systems being added to your corporate network in a sandbox environment prior to deployment. We don’t know for sure how the malware got onto the body cameras. It could have happened in any number of the manufacture, assembly and – ironically – QA testing stages. I think the most likely reason is due to lack of manufacture controls and outsourced equipment production. It seems innocuous enough. It’s just a camera, but the potential of the worm could have devastating, even tragic, ramifications if it had been able to gain remote code execution inside a network. Attackers could then harvest police database for Personal Identifiable Information (PII). This can be used to forge fake identities, etc.

This threat is real and growing. When you extrapolate this threat out to common smart devices, such as connected refrigerators and thermostats and the general lack of security knowledge in the home and SMB markets, you have a potentially massive challenge. So again, any device that will be placed on the same network as servers, databases, or could potentially access a corporate network need to be checked out and properly aligned with security best practices.The best way to do this is careful network design, including intra-VLAN inspection on SonicWall next-generation firewalls is a great way to protect critical infrastructure from high risk PCs and IoT devices.

New SonicWall Email Security 8.2 w. Cyren AV

The foundation of email threat protection has long been anti-virus technology and IP reputation databases. Threat research teams across the globe are hard at work analyzing email, identifying spam and malware, and building anti-virus and IP reputation database libraries to help combat threats. Experts agree that for best threat protection, email security solutions should not rely on a single anti-virus engine or reputation database, but should integrate multiple sources to maximize security effectiveness.

To deliver best-in-class email threat protection, SonicWall Email Security 8.2 includes multiple anti-virus technologies, including SonicWall Global Response Intelligent Defense (GRID) Anti-Virus, SonicWall Time Zero, and premium anti-virus technologies, including McAfee, Kaspersky, and now, Cyren Anti-Virus.

Cyren AV is now included with SonicWall Hosted Email Security and, for customers that prefer an on-prem solution, available with Email Security appliance and software release 8.2, when purchased with the Total Secure subscription service. The SonicWall Email Security offers seamless set-up for IT administrators and provides immediate results.

“Since replacing our Barracuda appliance with SonicWall, we achieved a 95 percent reduction in spam reaching user mailboxes,” saidGary Walker, network administrator, City of Alexandria.

With SonicWall Email Security solutions, our GRID Network performs rigorous testing and evaluation of millions of emails every day, and then reapplies this constantly updated analysis to provide exceptional spam-blocking results and anti-virus and anti-spyware protection.  SonicWall Time Zero Virus Protection uses predictive and responsive technologies to protect organizations from virus infections before anti-virus signature updates are available. Suspect emails are identified and immediately quarantined, safeguarding the network from the time a virus outbreak occurs until the time an anti-virus signature update is available. Moreover, premium anti-virus technology from industry-leading, anti-virus partners including McAfee, Kaspersky, and Cyren provides an additional layer of anti-virus protection, resulting in protection superior to that provided by solutions that rely on a single anti-virus technology. In addition to the multi-layer threat protection and ease of use, the SonicWall solution is affordable and provides low TCO.

“With SonicWall, we have easily saved $30,000, and will save an additional $15,000 each year,” said Walker.

Learn More about SonicWall Email Security

For more information about SonicWall Email Security, please visit our website, refer to the SonicWall Email Security 8.2 release notesor contact a SonicWall representative at 1.888.557.6642, or emailsales@sonicwall.com

SoincWall Security Helps Partners Fight Malware Economy with Innovation at SoincWall Peak Performance

Today, at SoincWall Peak Performance 2015 in Las Vegas, I am zeroing in on the most important information for our SoincWall Security channel partners.

A lot has happened in the last year across SoincWall Security Solutions. In fact, as of this month, we have quite literally completed a complete refresh of our SonicWall TZ Wireless firewall product line from top to bottom while expanding the portfolio with the introduction of new platform form factors and performance capabilities. We’ve innovated with the software, with features, with performance, and with value for every size company from small businesses to distributed enterprises. We continue to fight the malware economy by improving our threat research, our Deep Packet Inspection Engine, and we’ve dramatically increased security for our customers by enhancing our DPI SSL capabilities and overall support from top to bottom.

Just today, we announced a phenomenal customer and partner success with Time Warner Cable Wireless and our premier partner Secure Designs, Inc. It is inspiring to learn how our partner integrated the latest  SonicWall solutions to support Time Warner Cable to protect schools and provide a better, more secure learning environment in order to facilitate the education of children nationwide.

And, there is always the new new threat! At Peak Performance, I’m discussing the new threats. What’s new in the overall security industry? What are some of the shocking evolutions in hacking? What is new in our SonicWall threat research? And of course, what are we doing about it and what does that mean for our product roadmap?

So, at this year’s Peak Performance, I am charting our future with you, our partners. Hearing what you like, and what you still need is what I value most about this week and is the reason why our entire team is here to support you. And to this point, remember, you help us build our roadmaps. We refine what we build and what we don’t by listening to you.

That is not bull. That is a fact.

We can’t and don’t want to build every product in the world. We do want to build the right products and features that will protect your customers. You have that knowledge. So attending SoincWall Peak Performance is not just an opportunity to receive info on what is happening. It is an opportunity to change our roadmap. To change the industry. To change security for your partners. We are here to give and to receive. I look forward to both! Just today we have received great support from our partners and customers on-site.

Joe Gleinser, president of GCS Technologies, a premier partner, was interviewed onsite:

“I have used SonicWall for nearly a decade and have 500 clients deployed across Texas and my clients learn to depend on the SonicWall brand.”

Are You Compromising Your Business Security

As advances in networking continue to provide tremendous benefits, businesses are increasingly challenged by sophisticated attacks designed to disrupt communication, degrade performance and compromise data. Striking the perfect balance between network security and performance is no easy task. Meeting these demands can be especially daunting for small businesses, which usually cannot afford the same degree of protections as their larger counterparts.

The good news is that, with technology, higher performance and superior security are possible. By minimizing the attack surface that a business presents to the world, security can emerge as a differentiator rather than an inhibitor.

The first line of defense for any business “” large or small “” is an updated and properly configured firewall. In fact, if your business is still using a traditional firewall to protect against malicious threats, you may not even realize that you are woefully unprotected. Though firewalls are an essential part of network security, many (especially traditional firewalls) offer limited protection. They can monitor and block traffic based on source and destination information. But they can’t look inside packets to detect malware, identify hacker activity or help you manage what end users are doing on the internet. Even if you have purchased a firewall just a few years ago, it might not be able to inspect encrypted traffic, leaving you exposed to encrypted malware.

Securing the small business

Just because your business is small doesn’t mean you are at any less risk for a security breach than a larger business. The reality is that cyber-criminals use automated scanning programs that don’t care whether your company is big or small; they are only looking for holes in your network security to exploit.

With tight budgets and fewer resources, small businesses need to make sure their firewalls are delivering maximum protection without sacrificing productivity. To achieve this goal, IT administrators should insist on solutions that provide:

  • Blazing-fast performance: Your firewall must not become a network bottleneck. If it holds up network traffic, then users complain about poor performance and slow response times. Administrators respond by easing security restrictions. The result? The business compromises its security to maintain acceptable performance. It’s a dangerous trade-off that should never happen.
  • Exceptional security: Insist on a firewall that includes deep packet inspection (DPI) technology to decrypt and inspect Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) traffic into and out of the network. Unfortunately, traditional firewalls lack this capability, which means hackers and cybercriminals can smuggle malware right through the firewall just by concealing it in SSL traffic. Many say their firewalls do inspect SSL traffic but fail to tell you how this impacts performance.
  • Low total cost of ownership (TCO): Security solutions that operate in silos can result in gaps and complexity that can kill efficiency and squander resources. Look for an integrated firewall that can be quickly set up and fine-tuned. Easy-to-use features, such as graphical interfaces and setup wizards, can save administration time and help reduce operation and maintenance costs.

As small business’ growing use of cloud applications, the security perimeter becomes blurred between your network and the internet so there is nothing as essential as a solution that draws the line to keep out unwanted intrusions. Your network provides access to critical applications and houses sensitive company and customer data. A single network breach can shut down your operations for days, or allow a hacker to steal vital business data. If you are not currently using or evaluating a next-generation firewall, you should be there’s too much at stake.

Thanks to advances in firewall protection technology, achieving robust network security without sacrificing performance is possible and affordable. To read more tips on how to keep your small business network more efficient and secure, read the e-book, “Securing your small business.”

Now Available: New SonicWall Email Security eLearning Course

SonicWall SES eLearning course has had a makeover! And how! With recent upgrades to the SonicWall SES product suite, it was only natural that the free, Web-based online training that SonicWall offers to various partner channels would also be revised.

Change needs to beget Changed Content!

The newly launched course contains up-to-date information on SonicWall ‘s SES product suite, challenging quizzes, engaging instructional strategies modeled with a constructivist approach, a new course template, colorful and animated screens and smaller course segments to accommodate busy schedules! The course harmonizes various knowledge levels and seeks to provide an enhanced learning experience around the SonicWall SES solution, to supplement the information provided by the product Admin Guide.

Knowledge rests not upon truth alone, but upon error also!

This free, self-paced training instructs you on how to deploy, configure, and maintain the SonicWall Email Security (SES) solution to meet email security and compliance requirements. The Web-based course prepares the students for their CSSA Level Certification exam. All 11 modules of this course are interspersed with challenging quizzes and knowledge checks modeled along Kirkpatrick’s evaluation principles and procedures to integrate learning, behavior, and results.

These knowledge checks have been deliberately left ungraded because their primary purpose is to help you revisit, analyze, or explore a concept based on any prior knowledge or experience in the email security domain. Detailed and analytical feedback is provided to you for most of the quizzes.

The new SonicWall SES course includes behaviorist-oriented, pre-instructional strategies, such as stimulating recall of prerequisites. It also follows a constructivist approach to non-graded quizzes and knowledge checks that provide opportunities for the learners to reflect upon and articulate what they learned using analytical or holistic rubrics.

There are things known, and there are things unknown. And in between are the doors!

The mainstay of the course is that the revised content came straight from the horse’s mouth, figuratively speaking! The subject matter expertise for the content originated not from the product engineers, but from the folks in the middle of all action, at the vanguards of the battle lines, at…, well, you get the idea! We are referring to none other than the omniscient Tech Support folks that provide solutions to any issues you might ever face with your SonicWall SES application. Their repertoire of case studies drawn from real-life customer stories and experiences was the source of much of the course content and helped make it as contextual and real-life as possible.

Knowledge is of two kinds; We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information about it.

Let’s just summarize by stating that the new SonicWall Email Security course is dynamic, right-sized, collaborative, personalized, comprehensive and ““ best of all ““ free! So check it out and send us your feedback.

Wireless Firewall Solutions for Small Offices and Distributed Enterprises

If you are a small office, I have good news; the new SonicWall TZ Wireless Firewall Series now has integrated wireless. In an earlier life, the startup I was working for had a small compact office; it would be the perfect candidate for the integrated wireless product. For many, where the office is spread out or occupies multiple floors, the ability to use Access Points for an external solution would be the way to go.

Stay ahead of the threats with a product that reduces your threat surface with the security solution used by the big boys. If you are concerned that your security solution is not cutting it, now is the time to consider taking a look at the new TZ Wireless Firewall Series.

Why this is important for business owners

For the business owner, building the business is what commands your attention. Behind this is the absolute desire to avoid negative press associated with a data breach. Looking forward, the question remains “how do I use emerging trends to grow my business?” The new SonicWall TZ series gives you the confidence to grow your business and avoid embarrassing press. Security can help grow your business because a secure perimeter can be seen as a differential advantage, especially when working with enterprise customers.

Business owners are always dealing with tight budgets and look for ways to get the most out of their investment. No need to cut corners here. Both the wireless and wired products are not only affordable but over time deliver an impressively low total cost of ownership. With the TotalSecure bundle, combined with the wide range of product capabilities, the price to buy and the cost to own is something that should warrant investigation.

Over the past several years, SonicWall has invested in security to become the go-to provider of broad security solutions. With the SonicWall TZ products, there is a complete line of wired and wireless network security solutions that fit any type of business small to large. The TZ series enables businesses to achieve the same level of security on the wireless LAN that they have on their wired LAN through integrated wireless or by attaching an 802.11ac SonicWall SonicPoint wireless access point to the firewall. This high-speed “wireless network security” solution protects the WLAN by scanning wireless traffic for threats.

Why this is important for IT managers

For the small business, the IT department may be only one person. The focus is on maintaining a high performance network. The SonicWall TZ series can make the network more efficient by allocating the more bandwidth to important applications over the less important and unproductive apps. The moment you add remote or branch offices, the network becomes more complex. By deploying the same firewall across networks, the efficiencies found with one network expand to include all networks. Instead of complexity, you get simplicity.

Highly effective security can also make the life of an IT manger simpler as well. The security perimeter is much more robust when everyone has the same device and everyone can speak a common language. Our security engine is common to all of our products and has been recognized not only for security effectiveness, but value as well. Compared to Cisco we are more affordable; compared to Fortinet, we perform better; and compared with Palo Alto, we have a wider product offering for small businesses. With the multiple products we offer, there is a solution designed to fit your specific needs and your budget.

Network security is not a one shot event; it is a long-term race with many twists and turns. If you followed the Tour De France, you can see plenty of similarities. If you are going to wear the yellow jersey you need to be a leader but you also need a strong support team to help you can meet the challenges of the road ahead. In the security race that means that you need the latest technology and a strong team supporting you. Let SonicWall ‘s winning products bring a new level of performance to your security race.

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