Category: Security

Protect Against Cyberattacks by Choosing the Right VPN

Public networks and free WiFi access expose your business to security threats. Firewell Technology Solutions recommends taking serious time to consider whether or not you need a VPN for your team to help keep your data secure.

Many companies rely on public networks for communication and data sharing. It allows them to cut costs and allocate their funds elsewhere. Although the widespread adoption of the HTTPS protocol powered by SSL certificates encrypts a lot of web traffic by default, there are still several security issues worth considering.

For starters, the network provider might be monitoring the activity, which potentially gives them access to customer details, emails, and critical files. As a result, sensitive information can end up in the wrong hands, compromising the organization’s reputation. Another potential consequence is losing access to bank accounts, credit cards, and invaluable resources. These issues can lead to huge losses for any business.

Your business might be facing the same risk whenever a team member connects to a public network.

To eliminate it, you need to switch to a virtual private network (VPN) or secure global network (SGN). Both offer online anonymity and privacy, enabling you to conduct your operations away from prying eyes. 

Still, you can’t go for just any VPN or SGN. Firewell Technology Solutions urges you to think about these 10 factors when considering VPNs.

The 10 Factors

Factor #1 – VPN Location

The location of your VPN or SGN servers is essential for a few reasons.

For example, the greater the distance between your server and your business, the higher the chances of facing latency issues. That’s why to ensure a seamless surfing experience, stick to the nearest server available.

Furthermore, you can also consider a VPN or SGN from the same place as the content your team needs to access to overcome geographic restrictions. If your work requires research from the UK, for example, find servers from that country.

Factor #2 – Price

IMAGE SOURCE: Elena Mozhvilo on Unsplash –

Using free VPNs or SGNs might be tempting, but they deliver a lackluster experience. To start with, they can log you out of internet activities and are often chock-full of disruptive ads. 

You’re much better off investing in a paid platform. They come with various robust features, a larger number of servers, and configurations to bolster your security. 

Factor #3 – Device Compatibility

Another detail you should consider is the compatibility of your VPN or SGN.

In most cases, you need software that can work with several devices, such as your smartphone, laptop, and tablet. Otherwise, cross-platform work will suffer.

Factor #4 – VPN Capacity

Before choosing your VPN or SGN, make sure to determine the amount of data you can use. That means if your operations warrant tons of online resources, you should pick a solution that supports considerable data allocation. 

Moreover, check the number of online servers. The higher the number, the more efficiently your platform can support resource-intensive tasks. 

Factor #5 – VPN Protocol Support

Protocols are rules that stipulate connections between the client (software on your device) and the server. 

There are different protocols, but the most widely used ones include PPTP, OpenVPN, IPSec, SSL, SSH, and SSTP. Each offers varying speeds and levels of security, both of which are vital to your company. 

For instance, OpenVPN is an open-source protocol and one of the safest options for enterprises. It runs on 256-bit encryption keys and advanced ciphers, offering robust protection against cyberattacks. Plus, it features excellent firewall compatibility.

Factor #6 – Data Logging Policies

VPNs and SGNs log user data to streamline customer support and limit available connections. However, you need to consider what information they’re logging. 

In most cases, this includes session times and IP addresses. But some providers can also log your software, downloaded files, and web pages you visit. 

When looking for a suitable VPN or SGN, be sure to read the data logging policy to determine the information the app will store. You should also verify the company is transparent; if someone tries to deceive you, turn down their offer. 

Factor #7 – Availability of a Killswitch

No cybersecurity measure is fail-proof – VPNs and SGNs are no exception. Overloaded platforms can trigger IP leaks, interrupting your private connection and exposing your true address when online. 

To avoid this scenario, look for platforms with a built-in kill switch. It disrupts your devices’ access to the internet in case of IP leaks. The kill switch stops transfers of unencrypted information and can help prevent cybercriminals from obtaining your data. 

Factor #8 – Updates

Your VPN or SGN provider needs to roll out regular updates to ensure you can perform your operations safely and efficiently. 

If they don’t openly specify the update frequency on their webpage, find out when the last update was on your app store. It should give you a clue on how frequently the updates get sent out.

Factor #9 – Centralized Management

Centralized management enables you to control VPN or SGN distribution more easily, allowing you to manage access permissions and user accounts. Some of the best apps even feature gateway or role-based access management. It permits users to access only those segments of the network they need to perform their jobs. 

Another important consideration here is control from your console. IT administrators should have permission to open and delete accounts as well as check the devices linked to the platform. 

Lastly, your organization might benefit from VPNs or SGNs with IP safelisting (aka whitelisting). They allow administrators to approve the IP addresses of your enterprise to ensure only members with a verified IP can use corporate resources. This feature provides granular control over network accessibility.

Factor #10 – Customer Support

Customer support might be the most significant factor. Your provider should be easy to contact through different portals, such as telephone, live chat, and email. 

Easy accessibility lets you inform the VPN or SGN developer about various issues. For instance, they can help restore your network if it goes down and prevents unwanted exposure. 

Most client support teams are highly accessible, but make sure to verify this by reading customer reviews. 

Safeguard Against Cyberattacks with a Bulletproof VPN

The digital world is rife with challenges, especially if your business uses public networks. Loss of data can happen at any time, which can give your competitors the upper hand and tarnish your reputation.

That’s why Firewell Technology Solutions believes switching to a VPN or SGN is such a wise investment.

To make the most of your service, find an app with dependable security features, customer support, and suitable configurations for your operations. You’ll also want to patch up any other cybersecurity vulnerabilities. And we can help you make that happen.

If you’d like a quick, non-salesy chat to discuss your cybersecurity and find out where you might have any potential risks, contact us today.

Article used with permission from The Technology Press.

Making Your Mobile Devices Safe From Cyberattacks: The 9 Best Practices

The reality is, mobile devices are less safe than desktop computers. Boosting security on such devices is essential if you use them in business.

Technological breakthroughs have streamlined your operations in several ways. Primarily, you can now use mobile devices to make your communication and data sharing more convenient.

But this technological advancement also means that information on your team members’ mobile devices is no longer limited to just phone numbers and contacts: they now contain much more significant data, such as emails, passwords, and other sensitive account details.

That’s why Firewell Technology Solutions believes keeping those mobile devices secure is key to shielding your reputation and minimizing the risk of losing money.

Unfortunately, the protection of tablets and smartphones against cyberattacks isn’t as robust as that of desktops and laptops. Anti-malware applications may be present, but they’re not as powerful as their computer counterparts. In addition, many devices don’t support certain measures and applications that companies develop to enhance business security.

Fortunately, you can still implement robust safety measures to protect your smartphones and tablets.

This article will cover the nine best practices Firewell Technology Solutions endorses in improving cybersecurity on mobile devices.

The Nine Practices

Practice #1 – Establish a Sound Security Policy

Before issuing tablets or smartphones to your teams, create an effective usage policy. Define rules about acceptable use and determine the penalties for violating them.
Your employees must be aware of the security risks and measures that can help them reduce the risks. They should know that they are the first line of defense against cybercrime.
Furthermore, be sure to develop a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy if you permit your team to use a personal device for business. Consider including the following in your company policy:

  • Requirements for the installation and remote software wiping on any personal device that stores or accesses company data
  • Employee training and education on safeguarding company information when using wireless networks on their mobile devices
  • Data protection methods that include automatic locking or other security measures applicable after long inactivity periods
  • Protocols for lost and stolen devices
  • The use of security software and antivirus platforms
  • Backup requirements

Practice #2 – Ensure the Operating System is Up-to-date

Updating Android and iOS operating systems improves overall user experience, but their most significant role is in addressing security vulnerabilities. 

Therefore, install updates as soon as the developer rolls them out to reduce exposure to cybersecurity threats. Delaying it may give criminals enough time to attack your weaknesses and take advantage of outdated operating systems.

Practice #3 – Enable Password Protection


A complex password or PIN can help prevent cybercriminals from accessing mobile devices. Besides using alphanumeric combinations, you can also use facial or fingerprint recognition, depending on what suits your employees.

If you opt for digits and letters, don’t share the combination with people outside your company. On top of that, be sure that your staff doesn’t store them on their phones. Unmarked folders and physical wallets are a much safer option.

Practice #4 – Install Business Programs Only

Lenient download policies can allow your team members to install non-business apps. Downloading such apps might seem harmless, but they are also infamous for their harmful advertising codes and many other threats.

To mitigate this risk, tell your employees they can only download and use apps necessary for their roles.

Practice #5 – Avoid Public WiFi Connections

Your team may need to use public Wi-Fi networks in emergencies to send crucial emails or schedule a meeting. However, connecting to such networks can expose confidential company information to cybercriminals using the same network.

The easiest way to minimize this risk is to provide a high-quality internet plan that features roaming services for your remote workers. 

But if there’s no way to avoid public Wi-Fi connections, a reputable virtual private network (VPN) or secure global network (SGN) may do the trick. It can help shield your data by creating direct, secure links from your location to the intended website. 

Practice #6 – Leverage Phone Tracking

Losing company-issued mobile devices is unfortunate, but it’s not the end of the world. 

Enabling Android Phone Tracker, Find My Phone on iOS, or other device-tracking software can help locate your lost smartphones. Some programs also enable you to remove data on your stolen devices remotely. 

Installing these apps takes a couple of minutes and gives you much-needed peace of mind. With it, even if your staff loses their mobile device, cybercriminals are less likely to get their hands on the content.

Practice #7 – Incorporate MDM (Mobile Device Management) Software

For even more security, you may want to integrate with reliable MDM. It’s an excellent way to separate personal and business information while allowing your team members to set up robust security measures on their devices.

In most cases, cloud-based software is the most affordable, flexible, and manageable type of MDM. Many platforms let you check out device information, update and manage apps, configure your devices, create usage restrictions, and remove content remotely.

If possible, implement MDM software that enforces security measures across all devices. As previously mentioned, this can include data encryption, strong passwords, and setting up containers to separate personal information from enterprise data.

Practice #8 – Screen Messages Carefully

Cybercriminals frequently employ SMS phishing to trick your team into clicking dangerous links. They pose as someone credible, asking your staff to share confidential information.

If your employees encounter such messages, they should delete them or alert the IT department. Another great idea is to avoid opening the SMS and block the sender.

Practice #9 – Blocking and Safelisting

Many threats can compromise your company due to employee errors. For example, a team member may not realize they’re downloading a malicious app that allows thieves to steal data from their mobile devices.

Blocking and safelisting can enable you to protect your employees from these risks by determining which sites and apps are safe.

On one hand, blocking certain applications can give your IT department peace of mind and alert them when someone tries to access those applications.

On the other hand, whitelists can work great for highlighting the tools your team should prioritize over social media and games.

Don’t Drop Your Guard

Limiting security to your desktop computers and laptops is a disaster waiting to happen.

Your employees may still use their mobile devices to send emails and share sensitive information. That’s why shielding them from cybercriminals should be your top priority; moreover, Firewell Technology Solutions encourages you to develop a strict usage policy and to follow other recommended practices to make your team’s smartphones and tablets virtually impervious to data theft.

Get in touch with us today for even more cybersecurity tips. We can schedule a non-salesy chat to help you identify and address any potential security risks.

Article with small modifications used with permission from The Technology Press.

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) and Keeping Your Online Accounts Secure

If you’re interested in keeping your most important accounts secure, you must enable two-factor authentication.

Discover How Hackers Prey on Human Psychology

Crafty hackers do more than find backdoors to sneak through: they create back doors in ways that likely escape our awareness. So it’s up to us to learn how to spot these backdoors and keep them locked.

Cybercrime and Small Businesses 2021

Small business owners are mistaken in the assumption that they are too small to be noticed by cybercriminals.

IT Security Services by Firewell Technology Solutions

Why Choose Firewell Technology Solutions as your IT Solutions Provider?

Firewell Technology Solutions is an IT service provider who considers security a top priority. Given that cybercrime is now a trillion-dollar economy, network security, data security, and user security is one of our top concern. As your IT service provider, Firewell Technology Solutions will assess your current security situation, and using the latest security technology, we will fix any issues that could put your business at risk for a cyberattack or threat. At the same time, we will recommend the right security services your business needs to continually stay secure and protected. Running your business should be your number one priority. Let us focus on your security.

Firewell Technology Solutions can Secure Your Business

With the right combination of security services, Firewell Technology Solutions can protect your devices, data, and employees today and in the future. Our managed service plans include a variety of security services that allow us to keep your business running securely.

5 Steps to Security

We take inventory of your business’ current security levels:

  • Processes
  • Behaviors
  • Vulnerabilities
  • Antivirus Security
  • User Security
  • Patch Security
  • Network Access Security

We fix current holes or potential risks in your network with a three-pronged approach that protects you before, during, and after an attack:

  • Before — patch management (software & OS updates) and content filtering
  • During — Managed antivirus, email encryption, VPN
  • After — Image restore, data backup, user access controls

Firewell Technology Solutions constantly monitors your network for unusual activity or behavior.

Firewell Technology Solutions will create a plan to recover company data in the case of an unexpected event.

Product Information

Firewell Technology Solutions manages our clients’ networks with Avast Business’ most current and cutting-edge technology, allowing us to monitor your network, identify and stop threats, and continue to deliver and manage the security services you need to keep your business on the ground and running. Ultimately, your network will be protected by the world’s largest threat detection network that protects over 400,000 million users today.

Avast Business CloudCare’s powerful combination of endpoint, application, network, and data security services allows Firewell Technology Solutions to provide you with an unparalleled level of protection via pay-as-you-go service; furthermore, we can customize security services on each device on your network so you only pay for what each device truly needs.

Get Protected! Contact Us!

Cybercrime is a $1.6 Trillion Industry

Criminology professor at Surrey University Mike McGuire (2019) recently published findings from his nine-month study on global cybercrime titled “Into the Web of Profit” which reveals more than a few startling statistics, but one in particular stands out: business is booming in the cybercrime economy which boasts a total net worth of over $1.5 trillion. Through a variety of methods including personal interviews with convicted cybercriminals, covert observations on the Dark Web, and data from financial intuitions and international law enforcement agencies, McGuire (2019) reveals just how far-reaching the thread of cybercrime is.

Cybercrime is a 1.5 Trillion Dollar Industry

Illicit Online Markets 800Billion Dollars
Intellectual Property Theft 500Billion Dollars
Trading of Stolen Data 160Billion Dollars
Crime-ware as-a-service 1.6Billion Dollars
Ransomware 1Billion Dollars
SMBs are a Key Demographic
Small and Medium-Sized Businesses are Key Demographics for Cybercrime

Unfortunately, the idea that small businesses are “under the radar” for cybercrime is no longer true (if it ever really was). In fact, recent data suggests that 60% of small and medium sized businesses go out of business within six months of having suffered a cyberattack:

[B]ased on data from 1,377 CEOs of small and midsize businesses. . .[s]ixty-two percent of our respondents said that their firms don’t have an up-to-date or active cybersecurity strategy—or any strategy at all. And that’s a major problem, given that the cost of a cyberattack can be high enough to put a company out of business. . .”


  • 860 billion illicit/online markets
  • 500 billion intellectual property theft
  • 160 billion data trading
  • 1.6 billion crime ware-as-a-service
  • 1 billion ransomware
Depicting Cyber Crime
SMBs Are Vulnerable!
SMBs Present a Variety of Key Vulnerabilities
  • 12,000 of new phishing attempts per day delivered for SSL/TLS (encrypted Internet connections) (
    • This means that average anti-virus and anti-malware software has a harder time detecting malicious packets because they’re “hidden” in the encryption.
  • 50% of Americans work remotely
  • SMBs almost never have dedicated IT personnel let alone those who are security experts
  • SMBs often cannot deploy effective managed security systems because they lack expertise and resources
  • Most SMBs cannot afford the operational downtime that comes with a security threat or data breach.
SMBs Need IT Experts!
Firewell Technology Solutions Provides Comprehensive IT Security

Firewell Technology Solutions delivers cloud-based, proactive information security services. Because Firewall Technology Solutions works with cloud-based security tools, we can monitor the security services small and medium sized businesses require from one central console, allowing Firewall Technology Solutions to secure your network and your data while you focus on your business.