John Sawyer wrote about security implications of being hosted in the cloud in “Spot the Trouble in the Cloud” for InformationWeek. He highlights the security challenges for cloud based hosting. In particular:
“…enterprises are flying blind unless they adapt their security monitoring, incident response and digital forensic policies and procedures to the cloud… most cloud provider SLA state security is up to the customer”.
The steps to mitigate this challenge is to start monitoring. Enable system logs and send them over to your syslog server. Alternatively Mr Sawyer suggests the use of services like Loggly or products like Splunk, Tenalbe’s SecurityCenter and Log Corrlelation for your log management analysis.
In addition, you could outsource the monitoring to a dedicated team of professionals to notify you of any incidents that would otherwise escape your attention. You can also incorporate such a team into your incident handling policies and procedures. These teams are called Managed Security service providers (MSSPs).
Some of the security tasks MSSPs undertake on your behalf:
System Patch management
Malware detection and analysis
IPS/IDS Incident Response
Identity and password management
Researching new threats
Writing or preparing reports for audit teams
Contact email@example.com to see how you can benefit from our MSSP offerings and secure your data today!
Since our team is monitoring networks on a 24×7 basis we decided to extend the service to cover also the video monitoring. A lot of video cameras are now hooked up to DVRs with internet capabilities. It would be simple for us to login and monitor the DVR from our NOC. By providing the service, our team can help owners and managers save time and manage the video review process.
The Video Monitoring service is envisioned to provide peace of mind to property and business owners with 24×7 staff keeping tabs on the remote video feed from newer generation Digital Video Recorders that have internet capabilities. Our team can also help plan the optimal location and aim of the various types of dome cameras for maximum coverage. Instant alerts are provided for every notable ‘incident’. This service can be rendered worldwide.
We just wanted to give you a quick update on happenings at Untangle.
Upgrades to 6.2 continue to roll and will likely finish by June 12th. The ISO should be available sometime late this week or next. If you were not able to make the 6.2 Partner Overview Webinar, you can view the recording at https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/685173313
i) WAN Balancer and WAN Failover data sheet (New)per Bundle includes all of Untangle’s commercial applications and services for a single, low cost subscription. Annual and monthly pricing is available.
ii) Untangle Software/Super Bundle data sheet (New)
iii) Professional Package data sheet (update)
iv) Education Package data sheet (update)
v) Price List (update to include new applications and bundles)
Automatically obtain a complete inventory of your network and computer equipment without any installation on workstations. Also Tracks license details and supplier warranties on your assets. Properly document your changes in our hosted database.
6 ITIL v3.0 Processes
Incident Managment, Change Management, Problem Management, Configuration Management, Service Level Management, and Event Management
On Demand solution
No initial investment needed. Pay only 50 USD per month per IT user.
No infrastructure to setup, hosting is provided by us.
Always accessible anywhere, any time!
Great Reporting Tools
Performance indicators, dashboard, statistics with filtering and data mining features.
30 day Trial
The 30 day trial provides you with a full and unrestricted access to our hosted solution. You may create an unlimited number of IT users.
More Details on the ITIL V3.0 Process Solution:
Incident and service request management
The purpose of the following functionalities is to help document and resolve daily incidents and requests in the most efficient way possible.
Compatible with ITIL-based incident management
Service center (Service Desk) function
Web portal for users
Web portal for technicians
Automated follow-up with emails to users
Full integration with problem management, change management and CMDB
History of incidents associated to a user
History of incidents associated to a piece of equipment or software (CI)
Incident templates and quick calls
Detailed log of resolution activities
Breakdown of incidents and service requests into “sub-requests”
Service level agreement with automatic escalation using emails and visual indicators
Pre-configuration with real data (categories, types, priorities, codes)
Statistical reports, dashboard, graphs, performance indicators and data extraction in Excel
Automatic creation of incidents from emails
Notifications by email for important events
Multiple Service Desks support
Inventory and configuration (CMDB)
The primary objective of the following functionalities is to organize all relevant information concerning your equipment and software so that you may know at all times what your inventory is and what is the status of each component of your infrastructure.
Based on the ITIL CMDB concept
Pre-configured with over 20 CI types (hardware, software or logical types)
Fully configurable, possibility to add :
CI status management
CI location management
Management of users relying on a CI
Management of dependencies and relationships between CIs
Automated inventory of servers, workstations and installed software
CI criticality level indicator
History of incidents associated to a CI
Lease contract management and purchase information
Service contract management with notification prior to expiry
CMDB change monitoring tools
Document management in the CMDB with indexing and search
The purpose of the following functionalities is to document and to resolve recurring and complex problems which compromise the performance or undermine the stability of your infrastructure.
Compatible with ITIL-based problem management
Impact, cause, workaround and permanent solution management
Sharing of known errors and workarounds
Association of a problem to its associated incidents
Association of a problem to the CI in cause
Automatic closure of related incidents when a problem is closed
Detailed activities log
Relationship with the souce change (RFC) and with change for the permanent solution
Tool facilitating the correlation of incidents to problems
Tool for identifying the most problematic CIs
Possibility to mark incidents as “potential problems”
Email notifications to publish known errors
Change management The purpose of the following functionalities is to document and to monitor the changes made to the components of the infrastructure in order to ensure smooth operation and to minimise impacts on the services offered.
Compatible with ITIL-based change management
Management of the change implementation steps using tasks
Notifications for task assignments
Management of estimated effort, remaining effort and actual effort
Detailed activities log, by change and by task.
Documentation of impacts, required resources and authorizations
Change advisory board (CAB) approvals
Detailed activities log
Event management aims to ensure the follow-up of all events or alerts which occur throughout the IT infrastructure in order to detect and efficiently process problematic situations.
Compatible with ITIL-based event management
Notifications to IT staff
Detailed activities log
Creation of events from emails
These functionalities enable to manage and share your knowledge.
Knowledge base with attachments and full-text search
Incident history search
Problem history search
Solution search function integrated to incident management
Web portal for users
Possibility to submit incidents and service requests
Possibility to send messages to the service center
Log of communications with the service center
For managers These functionalities enable the manager to measure the performance of the service center and of other support processes.
Dashboard providing a quick overview of the current workload
Table of services currently affected by incidents
Comprehensive statistics on the respect of resolution targets (SLA)
Statistics on the delays for incidents and requests to be processed and to be resolved
Integrated report tool enabling to efficiently search and present data
Escalation in the event of an SLA breach
Performance indicator report
Unique user experience
Clever design, modern look and feel
Support for multiple windows displayed in tabs
Spell-check in all text fields
Integration with email software for sending emails from within an incident
Integration with remote access software
Dame Ware and many others
Easy to configure data lists
Automatic update downloads
1. Create fanatical “word of mouth” awareness around your product/services!
Boosts your customers’ satisfaction with superior after-sales service. Satisfied clients are more likely to promote your company to their friends! They will simply rave about your company and this helps build brand loyalty!
Effective customer support system (Help Desk system) would typically be tasked with answering most commonly asked questions from your clients. This help desk solution provides the central point of contact between your organization and your clients. Your clients can have someone in your organization to talk to regarding their issues — someone always is on hand to ‘take care of them’.
Typically, help desks are deployed only by larger organizations due to the constraints of cost and time to train suitable staff in such an enviroment. Expensive that is, until help desk virtualization and technology came together to bring down this investment!
2. Conserve your Limited IT resources.
Our virtual help desk teams help you save your valuable IT resources.
Your key IT staff can now concentrate on your key technology initiatives. They won’t be wasting their time handling the mundane, day to day support issues. Let our virtual teams take care of that!
Our virtual teams work offshore. We dont need to take up your office space to provide the same service. Our virtual teams work 24×7 with an incident/ticketing system with escalation and provisions for problem/request tracking. Selected issues with resolutions and workarounds are embedded into a knowledge base.
One Stop Help Desk Offering:
Service Desk Software
Staff to man the help desk
SLA 1st tier Resolution 80%
Service Desk Software:
We provide a SQL database backend that stores all incoming service requests. These are tracked by non sequential ticket numbers, and processed according to service plans and service level guarantees. These tickets are integrated with email support so that clients are provided with email status updates as soon as work is done on these. Selected incident/tickets are added to a knowledgebase. This database helps to provide agents with a quicker learning curve and shorter problem resolution time.
Our Service desk application employ online Live Chat solutions that can be placed on your website. This allows your website clients to query our help desk agents online. There is no need to deploy expensive 1-800 numbers! Another feature of our service desk application is that it allows your FAQs to be converted into “canned responses” and self help troubleshooting guides. This further shortens customer issue resolution times.
Help Desk Staff
Our service staff have high CSR (Customer Satisfaction Ratings), can type at least 40 wpms(for online chat) and have great listening and problem resolution skills. These skills coupled with our advanced service desk application come together to bring superior help desk and problem resolution.
Help Desk VOIP Infrastructure
Any call to a local number will be bridged over to our center. Our Help Desk teams pick up the calls and appear ‘local’ to the caller. Our solutions team will take care of provisioning the VOIP to do this transparently for you. Our teams handle Tier 1 issues and escalate the rest. With our VOIP infrastructure, our help desk teams can connect to and coordinate with your staff anywhere in the world!
Help Desk SLA
We gurantee first tier resolution of 80%. While we provide the software application, the voip infrastructure and the customer care specialist, we will NEED you to provide us with your product and service specific training and FAQs to help us achieve this Service Level Agreement.
In keeping with the tough times, Futuregen is offering a promotion on its Global Network Monitoring Service. The benefits are explained on a previous article on Global Network Monitoring Service.
Our service works by polling (talking to) your network devices every 5 minutes using SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol). SNMP gathers data about your device and stores it in our Database. This enables us to do baseline analysis on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis.
Some of the most common causes of downtimes that we can identify and notify include:
– Lease Line disruptions and bit errors
– Network Routing Issues
– Abnormal resource utilization for bandwidth, cpu, memory, disk usage
The details of the promotions are as follows:
1. Affordable per device pricing.
You can avail of the service by enrolling as little as one device (router, server or switch) to our service. The Per Device Per month fee is only 135 SGD.
2. Device attributes monitored:
Each device that is enrolled in the promo will have its cpu, memory, and bandwidth monitored.
For SNMP enabled servers, we can also monitor the disk usage and create alerts if these get past 80% utilized.
For routers with upstream links, we also monitor the bit error rates and create alerts for situations where the line quality deteriorates–even before users feel the ‘sluggishness’ of the line.
3. Notification within 10 minutes
When a device or link goes down, our service level agreement is to contact you or your designated officer to inform you of the event. This proactive alert enables you to accelerate the recovery from downtimes.
The following optional service/deliverables can be added:
1. Syslog server..where network or device events can be posted automatically for review (10 SGD per device per month)
2. Graphs and charts for executive briefing (15 SGD per report)
Futuregen President, Mr Wilson L. Chua has been invited to share his experiences in rolling out green initiatives at his Philippine Data Center. Details of the event at http://meetings.apnic.net/program/igov/index.html.
Mr Chua was the project manager that oversaw the migration of applications to newer high performance, low powered Quad Xeon and 2.5″ Storage drives. The transcript of Going Green is here.
As a reseller of Untangle for Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines, Futuregen is proud to highlight the top of mind questions about the affordable network security software from Untangle.
Why do you need a network security software to secure your network? If your network is connected to the internet, chances are you are being attacked, spammed, spoofed, or your enterprise assets are being compromised…without you even knowing it! It’s scary.
Securing your network not only protects your enterprise assets, it also ensures that your web facing applications are available to users when they need it. To learn more, here is a short video on the Untangle Network Security Software
If network security is so important, why aren’t other businesses securing their network? Two factors: Cost and expertise. Top of line security products do cost a lot. It comes with esoteric commands that require a highly trained security professional to operate.
But these are things of the past. Our solution is not only free to download, it is also easy to use. The graphical interface enables you to set options and then wait for the executive summary reports to arrive via email!
With our solution, there really are no excuses for not protecting your network.
What can Untangle as a Network Security Software? Well a lot! Here is a list of what it can do, and we call the term in the security industry:
Web Filtering. It blocks your employees from time-wasting and unproductive surfing. You control what sites are allowed and not allowed for users inside your network. Best of all, you can just select categories like violence, hacking, sex and the software will do the rest!
Spam Blocker. Stop spam at your gateway even before it reaches your users. They won’t even need to download the spam, and frees them from having to delete it!
Firewall. You can define what types of traffic can enter your network. So it enables your network to show a ‘smaller attack footprint’ on the internet. In short, it limits the points of entry that are open to hackers.
Virus Blocker. Scan all network traffic for viruses and drop them.
Spyware Blocker. Protect users from websites and files that install malicious codes
Intrusion Prevention System. Protects the network from known attack signatures by preventing them from reaching their targets. It gets zapped at the gateway!
If it’s a free Network Security Software, how does Untangle make any money? Untangle sells commercial add-ons for advanced networks. These are sold as subscriptions. Commercial Add-ons include live support, advanced management features and applications for additional security and remote access.
How much does the Untangle Network Security software cost? Many will get everything they need for free, but with Commercial Add-ons starting at just $5/mo anyone can afford Untangle. The Professional Package with live support is the best value and it starts at just $25/mo. Full price list available online.
Does it cost anything to join? Nope. And training is free too. If you’ve got customers with spam, spyware, web filtering or remote access needs, we’d love to work with you.
How does subscription licensing work, if I have multiple offices and want to install an Untangle Server with the Professional Package at each one? The software license is governed by each Untangle Server and the network it services. We have four pricing tiers based on the number of personal computers on the network. The tiers are 1 – 10, 11 – 50, and 51-150, and 151+.
Let’s look at an example:
You have a main office with 78 employees and two branch offices with 25 and 7 employees respectively. You install an Untangle Server in each office and want to run the Professional Package on all three servers. Your subscription would total $225/month broken out as follows:
$150/mo for the main office with 78 employees (51 – 150 license)
$50/mo for the branch office with 25 employees (11 – 50 license)
$25 for the branch office with 7 employees (1 – 10 license)
Additional discounts are available for longer commitments.
What is the difference between personal computers on the network versus employees? Untangle’s subscription licensing is by personal computers on the network. If your employees share a set of common computers, you should base your license on the number of computers, not the number of employees. Likewise, if your employees have more than one personal computer each, the license is still based on the total number of personal computers.
If you are as excited as we are at this point, your next action should be to download the Network Security software and just try it out! You can also email marketing[at]futuregen.sg for any support or pre-sales inquries.