CyberWyoming Asked the Experts
Jesse Larson, President of Team Networks in Casper.
Jesus Rios, CEO of PDS in Sheridan
According to Jesse Larson, President of Team Networks in Casper, the current political conflict in Ukraine has been affecting Wyoming businesses. Larson has observed that attacks from Russian-affiliated IP addresses have risen over 50% for Team’s clients including increased email phishing and port scanning (including remote desktop protocol scanning).
“One client that hasn’t been hit for 2-3 years has been scanned over 1000 times,” according to Larson. “Good spam protection is a must and, ideally, with ATP (Advanced Threat Protection) scanning for attachments. Additionally, talk to your IT department or provider about reviewing the endpoint security for your network, including ports that may be open on your firewall.”
For the past month the world has watched in horror as Russia prepared for and eventually waged war on Ukraine. Within a matter of days cyber warfare began to be deployed against the country of Ukraine, and little was known with what kind of effect it might have on the United States. Within a week of the conflict, the United States was able to confirm a Russian sponsored botnet attack against the cyber security company Watchguard. PDS had first-hand experience working to evaluate and mitigate any potential risk to our clients, as we have been a Watchguard partner for over 7 years. Fortunately; the exploit had zero effect on any of our clients or infrastructure as the threat was limited to firewall configurations that did not adhere to standards of security. PDS ran a scan on all of our managed units, roughly 175 to date, and immediately applied the recommended updates by the vendor.
Although this situation did not affect our managed infrastructure, it clearly brought to light the geopolitical reality affecting United States companies, seemingly removed from the conflict. PDS has fortunately not seen any additional threats requiring action on our part. We have, however; begun a heavy educational campaign with our managed clients to ensure they are deploying security in layers wherever possible and with whatever means available to do so. Our team continues to evaluate and monitor security threats targeting the technologies we use. We encourage all Wyoming entities to work with their cyber security resources, in particular CyberWyoming, to evaluate their vulnerabilities, and to deploy systems necessary to protect themselves.
Any Wyoming business can join Wyoming’s Cybersecurity Competition for Small Businesses for free because of our members, like PDS and Team Networks, and sponsors. A huge thank you to them for helping us keep our business communities safer!
To register or for more information, visit https://cyberwyoming.org/competition/