Niall Mackey

Recent Posts

Avoiding Discrimination Cases – Why Content Filtering Matters So Much

Posted by Niall Mackey on Mar 8, 2016 1:52:22 PM

No matter how liberal your business may be, every one of your employees has their own standards of taste and decency. That picture John in accounts emails round the office may seem harmless to him, but Amanda in the service department may find it grossly offensive.

John’s “humorous” pic isn’t funny at all when Amanda gets a copy in her inbox; she’s embarrassed and upset. His thoughtless email could even land your company in court facing a harassment case.

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Topics: Content Filtering

Spam – Dealing With False Positives

Posted by Niall Mackey on Feb 26, 2016 12:56:50 PM

Every now and then you will find that a legitimate business mail is flagged as spam and placed into quarantine, well out of harm’s way. Almost inevitably the missing message will be something extremely important – the sign off on a new contract, an important bill, crucial project details etc.

And for many users, having a legitimate email blocked is more frustrating than having to weed out genuine spam from their inboxes.

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Topics: Spam

Locky Shows Ransomware and Macro Viruses are Alive and Kicking

Posted by Niall Mackey on Feb 23, 2016 10:07:25 AM

Having seen some decent returns on ransomware campaigns in the recent past, cybercriminals continue to develop new variants with a view to squeezing victims for cash. Hot on the heels of Dridex comes a Locky, another macro-driven virus, this time capable of destroying large swathes of corporate data.

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Topics: Locky, Ransomware, Macro Viruses

How To Introduce Personal Responsibility Into Your AUP

Posted by Niall Mackey on Feb 12, 2016 11:53:07 AM

The humble Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) is an important tool for upholding standards and security within your corporate network. Just like an employment contract, a good AUP should clearly define what is, and is not, acceptable when using company IT resources.

It should also include flexible provisions that can be applied to future developments and technologies as well as the systems you currently have in place.

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Topics: IT Security

Simplifying email security for non-technical users

Posted by Niall Mackey on Feb 4, 2016 1:49:51 PM

Spending time showing employees the common traits of fraudulent messages (incorrect logos, dodgy sender addresses, third-party links, zip attachments) will help them better understand what they need to avoid. And once they know what they are looking for, it becomes much easier for them to manage their own mailbox security.

Show workers how to hover their mouse over links, check the sender’s address and manually scan emails for malware. Anything that looks suspicious needs to be double-checked or deleted immediately.

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Topics: Email Security, Cyber Crime, Cyber Security

TalkTalk IT Security Breach – What Happened Next

Posted by Niall Mackey on Feb 2, 2016 9:22:46 AM

Back in October 2015, headlines were dominated by news about a successful ‘breach’ of telecoms provider TalkTalk’s network security. In the ensuing outcry, several things became apparent:

  •      The hack was apparently carried out by a 15 year-old boy.
  •      The personal details of 1.2 million customers were stolen in the breach, along with 21,000 bank account records and 28,000 partial credit card details.
  •      The incident was actually the third breach experienced by TalkTalk over the course of eight months.
  •      TalkTalk share prices fell by 22% in the five days after the news broke.
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Topics: IT Security

Gone Phishing: How Businesses Avoid The Scams

Posted by Niall Mackey on Jan 29, 2016 10:53:50 AM

Regular coverage of cyberattacks in the UK media appears to be doing little in the fight against e-crime as new figures suggest phishing scams netted £174 million in 2015. According to the government-backed cybersecurity body GetSafeOnline, there were 95,556 scams reported to Police between November 2014 and October 2015.

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Topics: Phishing

Building a Security-First Corporate Mindset

Posted by Niall Mackey on Jan 27, 2016 3:53:27 PM

With so many potential attack surfaces, corporate IT security relies on everyone in the organisation working together to keep data and infrastructure safe. Automated systems like hosted anti-spam can help to protect the network perimeter, but you will always need to involve employees in raising security standards too.

Which is where a building a security-first corporate mindset can come in useful.

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Topics: IT Security

Engaging Users in the Fight Against Cybercrime

Posted by Niall Mackey on Jan 19, 2016 4:03:37 PM

Every computer, every user account and every item of software on your company network represents a potential attack point for cybercriminals. Some of these channels are more effective than others, but every device is at risk of compromise.

The modern network has thousands of ‘moving parts’, creating an administrative nightmare for the IT manager. And with the rapid uptake of BYOD and remote working technologies, the problem is only going to get worse.

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Topics: IT Security, Cyber Crime, BYOD

How Much Does Spam Actually Cost Your Business?

Posted by Niall Mackey on Jan 14, 2016 5:03:48 PM

Although you realise spam presents a large financial burden to your business, it is often difficult to convince other stakeholders of just how big a problem it is. Many will assume that it is simply a personal irritation, or one of the less enjoyable aspects of network management.

Why? Because often the only common language between business units is finance. If you cannot put a euro value on the effect of spam, other executives will not grasp why investment in anti-spam technologies is so important.

So how do you go about calculating the annual cost of spam to your business?

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Topics: Spam