How Do You Know It’s Time to Purchase a Server?

Do you have more than 4 employees that use computers?
If you do, you should have a server.

Implementing a network and server isn’t easy or inexpensive. However, the benefits you gain far outweigh the costs.

here is when you need a serverIt is surprising how many companies do not implement client/server based networks. Many businesses just continued adding workstations to their old peer-to-peer network. A Peer-to-peer network doesn’t provide much in the way of security and resource sharing. They often have problems accessing workstations and lose data due to viruses or spyware; they may also experience intermittent Internet problems. PCs networked in a peer-to-peer fashion are adequate when you only have a few users on the network, but once you have more than 4 concurrent users on your network, it’s time to consider investing in a network server.

Unlike large corporations, many small businesses don’t have the IT department or the deep pockets necessary to maintain a complex IT infrastructure. Implementing network servers doesn’t have to be overly expensive or complex for you to benefit from them.

A server is different than a typical PC. A desktop system is designed to run a user-friendly operating system, desktop applications, and other desktop oriented functions. Even if the desktop had similar processors, memory and storage, it not the same as a real server. They are designed for different purposes.

24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year, servers are engineered to manage, store, send and process data. A server needs to be far more reliable than a similar configured desktop. Servers offer a variety of features not typically found in a desktop PC.

Servers may have:

  • More than one processor
  • Redundant hard drives or power supplies
  • Components that are hot swappable
  • Ability to be scalable
  • Ability to process data faster and more efficiently

Some of the more important server functions are the following:

  • Centralized Backup
  • Increased reliability
  • Centralized data storage and shared resources
  • File and Network security
  • Anti-virus management

Servers are the unsung heroes of the corporate computing environment, working behind the scenes to help get the maximum benefit from the personal computers that people use every day. Before investing in server hardware, you need to consider applications, storage, processor, form factor, and more to help you choose wisely.

If you don’t have the experience or expertise to evaluate your server requirements, you need to find a trusted IT organization to help you. Whomever you choose to work with should walk you through the process and show you why the server is configured correctly for your organization. Consider your business processes for today and for the future.

Written By: Scott Fluty, President/CEO
CCNY Tech is an IT sales and services company. For over 25 years, CCNY Tech has been supplying IT equipment as well as providing maintenance and IT recycling services. Partnering with some of the top brands in the industry, they are experts in equipment and custom configurations. CCNY Tech IT professionals provides custom solutions to businesses of all sizes. Learn more at ccnytech.com.

CCNY Tech Assists with Network Security

CCNY Tech is an IT hardware sales, maintenance, and recycling company, located in Utica, NY. In the IT business for over 25 years, this company has learned the ins and outs of the tech world and has some of the most knowledgeable engineers. CCNY Tech provides support throughout the lifecycle of the datacenter. They supply, install, maintain, decommission, refurbish, and recycle networking equipment. CCNY Tech is there for any step of the process for businesses like yours.

Enhancing Security
A client approached us with a request for additional security to protect their documents and critical infrastructure from ransomware attackers. The primary issue for the client was a wide open connection to the internet and a lack of endpoint protection. Our solution was to deploy a brand new FortiWifi 60E with UTM bundle. We bridged the current internet connection to the FortiWifi to provide robust traffic scanning via NGFW with SSL packet inspection and AV scanning on all internal and external facing traffic from the client’s network.

The Process
Setup and configured Web Filtering, Application Controls, Anti-Spam, Web Application Firewall, Intrusion Detection, Cloud Access Security Inspection, Forti-Sandbox integration (for file scrubbing), DNS Filtering and SSL Inspection on top of internal and external Anti-Virus protection to the network. Tweaked the policies to allow unit to provide as much freedom as needed but still protect the users from unwanted attention from the larger internet. Setup DNS server on FortiGate to provide the function for the local systems while routing all outbound internet facing traffic through Fortinet’s own DNS servers. Configure and deploy SSL-VPN access to client office manager for remote access to their PC while working from home. Setup and deploy two wireless networks, one for guests and one for employees, protecting the employee connection via WPA2 and long pre-shared key, put guests WiFi on schedule so that it does not provide service outside of client office hours.

After initial period of tweaking and changing policies to provide the proper coverage and access for the users at the client system has been running without issue. WiFi has been a big hit with the employees and those visiting and working with the client.

By Daniel Blackburn, Sr. Systems Engineer
CCNY Tech is an IT hardware sales, maintenance, and recycling company, located in Utica, NY. In the IT business for over 25 years, this company has learned the ins and outs of the tech world and has some of the most knowledgeable engineers. CCNY Tech provides support throughout the lifecycle of the datacenter. They supply, install, maintain, decommission, refurbish, and recycle networking equipment. CCNY Tech is there for any step of the process for businesses like yours.

 

Avoiding Ransomware & Malware Issues

By now I am sure you have heard about the Ransomware outbreak called WannaCry a few days ago on the internet. Security Experts warn that there will be more.

Internet security experts suggest some basic steps that will help reduce the chances of getting hit by Virus or Ransomware issues.

Here are the “Must Do” list for dealing with and preventing ransomware and other malware type issues.

1 Run Windows Update frequently and install all OS patches. Virtually all 0-Day (un disclosed) vulnerabilities are communicated to software vendors LONG before they issue is publicly announced. Typically, these issues are patched and released as part of the normal Windows Update process before the issues becomes commonly known. Running Windows Update frequently and installing all patches will avoid most of these issues.

2 Have data file backup’s!!!!! Dropbox, OneDrive, box.net, etc. all have great systems for backing up data files and keeping back versions. USE THEM, that way if you get infected you can get your work files back. Also, make sure your keeping several versions back of the files as many Ransomware attacks will embed in your files for days or weeks before deploying so you will want to have a few previous versions back. Again, all the major cloud backup providers support this, you just need to make sure it’s turned on.

3 Avoid questionable web sites and NEVER open any sort of executable file that is emailed to you. If someone email’s you and executable file CALL THEM and ask if it was them. If it was then tell them they shouldn’t do that and if it wasn’t then they have probably been hacked.

4 Run a good virus software. This won’t protect you completely (that’s why it’s #4 on our list) but it can reduce the odds of being hit. At the very least make sure you have Windows Defender updated and turned on.

Having a good network and firewall is very important when it comes to server protection. Many of these maleware, phishing and ransomware attacks are coming from inadequately protected networks and servers. Call us at CCNY Tech for a Free Consultation on how we can upgrade the servers and networks with our IT Services.

CCNY Tech is an IT sales and services company. For over 25 years, CCNY Tech has been supplying IT equipment as well as providing maintenance and IT recycling services. Partnering with some of the top brands in the industry, they are experts in equipment and custom configurations. CCNY Tech IT professionals provides custom solutions to businesses of all sizes. Learn more at ccnytech.com.

Employment Opportunity: Field Engineer Technical Level III and Level IV

Now Hiring

CCNY Tech is looking for a Field Engineer Technical Level III and Service Engineer Level IV.  CCNY Tech is an IT company specializing in hardware and professional IT services.

Qualifications for Level III are as follows:https://ccnytech.com/it-services/

Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or Network Security
Certification in IT repair and services
Experience in computer and electronic device repair

Qualifications for Service Engineer Level IV are as follows:

Bachelor’s Degree plus certification and/or pursuit of Master’s Degree in Computer Science or Network Security
Certification in IT repair and services
5 years’ experience in the IT industry in a system’s support position
Windows or Unix Administration

Please send resume to info@ccnytech.com.

CCNY Tech Sponsors a Marcy Deerfield Little League team!

CCNY Tech CEO, Scott Fluty has been heavily involved in the Marcy Deerfield team for several years. As a coach for 9 years and a member of the board for 3, Scott is proud to have CCNY Tech sponsor the team. Sponsorship helps to keep the cost of baseball affordable for our youth, as it reduces the per child out of pocket cost.

 

His involvement began when his sons, Josh and Matt joined the team.

CCNY Tech recognizes the importance of sports in our community to build our youth and unity. The company enjoys to be involved in local teams and events as this area continues to grow and prosper.

 

Participation in sports has been proven to contribute to success not only in K-12 but also shows that a majority of those children go on to attend college. This success then goes on to the workplace as 61% attribute their success in sports to their success in their careers. Sports stimulates the brain and improves cognitive abilities.  Learn More

 

CCNY Tech holds high importance in our youth because those are our future engineers.

CCNY Tech is an IT sales and services company. For over 25 years, CCNY Tech has been supplying IT equipment as well as providing maintenance and IT recycling services. Partnering with some of the top brands in the industry, they are experts in equipment and custom configurations. CCNY Tech IT professionals provides custom solutions to businesses of all sizes. Learn more at ccnytech.com.

 

 

Protecting Your Organization from the WCry Ransomware

Updated: As of Monday May 15th, the White House states over 300,000 computers have been affected by this latest malware attack in over 150 countries worldwide.

Ransomware has become the fastest growing malware threat, targeting everyone from home users to healthcare systems to corporate networks. Tracking analysis shows that there has been an average of more than 4,000 ransomware attacks every day since January 1, 2016.

On May 12, FortiGuard Labs began tracking a new ransomware variant that spread rapidly throughout the day. It is a highly virulent strain of a self-replicating ransomware that has impacted such far-flung organizations as the Russian Interior Ministry, Chinese universities, Hungarian and Spanish telcos, and hospitals and clinics run by the British National Health Services. It is especially notable for its multi-language ransom demands that support more than two-dozen languages.

This ransomware is being referred to by a number of names, including WCry, WannaCry, WanaCrypt0r, WannaCrypt, or Wana Decrypt0r. It is spread through an alleged NSA exploit called ETERNALBLUE that was leaked online last month by the hacker group known as The Shadow Brokers. ETERNALBLUE exploits a vulnerability in the Microsoft Server Message Block 1.0 (SMBv1) protocol.

Affected Microsoft products include:
Windows Vista
Windows Server 2008
Windows 7
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows 8.1
Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows RT 8.1
Windows 10
Windows Server 2016
Windows Server Core installation option

Microsoft released a critical patch for this vulnerability in March in Microsoft Security Bulletin MS17-010. That same month, Fortinet released an IPS signature to detect and block this vulnerability. And we released new AV signatures today to also detect and stop this attack. Third party testing also confirms that Fortinet Anti-Virus and FortiSandbox effectively block this malware. Details about IPS and AV signatures are included at the end of this article.

We strongly advise all customers take the following steps:
• Apply the patch published by Microsoft on all affected nodes of the network.

• Ensure that the Fortinet AV and IPS inspections as well as web filtering engines are turned on to prevent the malware from being downloaded, and to ensure that web filtering is blocking communications back to the command and control servers.

• Isolate communication to UDP ports 137 / 138 and TCP ports 139 / 445.

We also recommend that users and organizations take the following preventive measures:
Establish a regular routine for patching operating systems, software, and firmware on all devices. For larger organizations with lots of deployed devices, consider adopting a centralized patch management system.

Deploy IPS, AV, and Web Filtering technologies, and keep them updated.
Back up data regularly. Verify the integrity of those backups, encrypt them, and test the restoration process to ensure it is working properly.

Scan all incoming and outgoing emails to detect threats and filter executable files from reaching end users.

Schedule your anti-virus and anti-malware programs to automatically conduct regular scans.
Disable macro scripts in files transmitted via email. Consider using a tool like Office Viewer to open attached Microsoft Office files rather than the Office suite of applications.
Establish a business continuity and incident response strategy and conduct regular vulnerability assessments.

If your organization has been affected by ransomware, here are some things to do:
Isolate infected devices immediately by removing them from the network as soon as possible to prevent ransomware from spreading to the network or shared drives.

If your network has been infected, immediately disconnect all connected devices.
Power-off affected devices that have not been completely corrupted. This may provide time to clean and recover data, contain damage, and prevent conditions from worsening.

Backed up data should be stored offline. When an infection is detected, take backup systems offline as well and scan backups to ensure they are free of malware.

Contact law enforcement immediately to report any ransomware events and request assistance.
The security of our customers’ systems is of paramount importance to Fortinet. We are actively monitoring the situation to respond to any new malicious behavior and will reach out immediately if new developments are discovered.

This blog post reposted with permission from Fortinet – a brand proudly sold and serviced by CCNY Tech.  Full Article

Contributed by:  Aamir Lakhani, Fortinet

CCNY Tech is an IT sales and services company. For over 25 years, CCNY Tech has been supplying IT equipment as well as providing maintenance and IT recycling services. Partnering with some of the top brands in the industry, they are experts in equipment and custom configurations. CCNY Tech IT professionals provides custom solutions to businesses of all sizes. Learn more at ccnytech.com.

Supporting Local Businesses

Last year at about this time, Central New York had a heat wave.  Like many upstate New York businesses, we turned on our air conditioning for the first time in the season.  We quickly noticed that one of our main units was not operating properly.  We called and spoke to several air conditioning repair companies in the area.  Fred F Collis and Sons being one of them.

Our maintenance person met Paul Collis and assessed our situation.  Paul recommended adding a new wall mount ductless unit.  He explained how a more efficient unit would save us money over time.  We went through the the different models. His knowledge and the way he related to our situation made our decision easy on which organization we wanted to give our business.   

Unfortunately, this wasn’t the only help we were going to need to complete this project.  Most of our outer walls are windows.  We needed to remove some windows and build a solid wall to properly install the units.  We went through the process of finding a contractor to remove the windows and build over the openings.  After we chose the contractor to do so, they didn’t show up to do the work.  As time passed, proper air conditioning for CCNY Tech’s employees was becoming a bigger and bigger issue.   


This is where Fred F Collis and Sons really exceeded our expectations.  Using their time and contacts, they got us the help we needed to prepare our facility to install our new air conditioners.  Once the facility was ready for Paul’s professional technicians to begin, they got the systems running and cleaned up so that we could enjoy working in a very comfortable workspace.

CCNY Tech is now looking forward to some great summer weather.  And thanks to Fred F Collis and Sons, we will have a very comfortable and productive summer.

CCNY Tech Staff Tours Saranac Brewery

Friday May 5th, CCNY Tech went on a tour at Saranac Brewery in Utica, NY. The CCNY Tech team makes it a point to be involved in the local community, and the Saranac tour was a great opportunity to learn more about this area’s unique history and culture. This company bonding experience made for an enjoyable day outside of the office. CCNY Tech was able to learn a bit more about what goes into the process of making F.X. Matt products, such as Saranac and Utica Club. The team was also given an overview of the history in the area, with highlights of times such as prohibition. The history tour explained the 128 year span that brought the local brands and landmarks to what we know and love today.

Learn more about the brewery at https://www.saranac.com/

CCNY Tech highly recommends taking the tour!

CCNY Tech Delivers Timely WIFI

Creating Seamless WIFI

One of our local customers was in need of strong, reliable WIFI to keep track of inventory and production throughout the day. They faced the problem of weak and dropping signal due to large equipment and thick walls. We wanted to create a substantial WIFI network with enough overlap to ensure a clean handoff between stations. We were able to deploy 3 UniFi access points in strategic locations of the building to ensure that their signal would be strong and consistent. We worked behind the scenes during their business hours at one-third the cost of comparable solutions. WiFi access now extends to sections of the facility never before able to receive service.

 

Securing the Process

Not only was our team able to create a more functional WIFI network for our customer, we were also able to provide appropriate accessibility and security. We streamlined the login process and setup scheduling to shut down certain SSIDs outside of business hours to prevent unauthorized access attempts and usage of company bandwidth by unwanted users.

 

The Product and How it was Used

The UniFi AP-AC-LR access points:

Ubiquiti’s band steering technology was used to push newer systems to the 5GHz band to free up spectrum for legacy equipment on the 2.4GHz band. The built-in air-time fairness component of the UniFi Controller software was used to ensure that talkative devices did not crowd out critical infrastructure from communicating.

 

By Daniel Blackburn, Sr. Systems Engineer
CCNY Tech is an IT hardware sales, maintenance, and recycling company, located in Utica, NY. In the IT business for over 25 years, this company has learned the ins and outs of the tech world and has some of the most knowledgeable engineers. CCNY Tech provides support throughout the lifecycle of the datacenter. They supply, install, maintain, decommission, refurbish, and recycle networking equipment. CCNY Tech is there for any step of the process for businesses like yours.

 

CCNY Tech Donates IT Services to Local United Way

CCNY Tech donated time and resources to the United Way of Rome and Western Oneida County to upgrade their IT infrastructure and provide security. United Way was at risk of attack and possibility of losing critical documents. CCNY Tech created a safe and functional network for the charitable organization.

United Way’s open connection to the internet and lack of security at network endpoints was a major concern. CCNY Tech was able to create a unique solution to meet their exact needs.With customized hardware and software, United Way is now capable of managing its workload with ease and confidence.

One of the biggest concerns was the risk of exposure to ransomware. CCNY Tech implemented firewall, Web filtering, anti-virus, intrusion detection and anti-spam measures. The comprehensive upgrade solution allowed for full network security, fluidity, and enhanced functionality.

The United Way upgrade helps to ensure security over company and customer data. By bridging the internet connection, they allowed for robust traffic scanning and packet inspection on all internal and external facing traffic. These improved measures help to ensure that United Way remains secure and productive.

“I am grateful for the time and support that Daniel Blackburn and other staff members have given with the installation to get everything running smoothly in the office.” – Alice Dearo, United Way

If your local non-profit organization has a need to upgrade your IT infrastructure, CCNY Tech plans to make another IT Services donation by the end of 2017.

CCNY Tech is an IT sales and services company. For over 25 years, CCNY Tech has been supplying IT equipment as well as providing maintenance and IT recycling services. Partnering with some of the top brands in the industry, they are experts in equipment and custom configurations. CCNY Tech IT professionals provides custom solutions to businesses of all sizes. Learn more at ccnytech.com.

 

 

 

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