application-securityThere are many benefits that come with our increasingly wired business processes: greater collaboration, more storage, improved portability, and more. On the other hand, it’s a dangerous world out there in cyberspace, and not many people realize it. Several large names such as Microsoft, Apple, The New York Times, and Twitter have recently gone public in admitting that their applications and data have been exploited by hackers. Is your organization doing everything that it can to prevent outsiders from stealing valuable data?  Here are a few things that you can do to protect your application infrastructure:

1. Restrict Access

The first step to making sure that your applications and data are secure is making sure is minimizing their availability. Does everyone in your organization need access to everything? More than likely, the answer is no. Next, does your system need to be available at all hours? We often recommend Amazon Web Services, which is known for their “Pay-As-You-Go” service structure. If your organization hasn’t already, it’s time to cut costs and minimize risk by only running what you need when you need it.

2. Update Legacy Code & Outdated Technology

One of the greatest causes of security breaches in IT is using outdated technology, or legacy code. It’s imperative that your organization’s infrastructure, and software is up to date. When it comes to applications on the web, hackers traditionally target applications or systems that are not current. Why is this? When developers locate small loopholes in software that could be security risks, they release small software updates with “patches.” When software is not up to date, there is a good chance that it is missing valuable security fixes.

3. Remain Vigilant with Constant Monitoring

A few months ago we blogged about recent changes in the Government Landscape that would require constant monitoring of applications, and for good reason. In 2009, the US State Department led the charge in IT security by implementing continuous monitoring efforts. Within one year, their risk rating on 85,000 computers worldwide dropped by 90%.

Without a proper monitoring system in place, an organization is essentially relying on the end user to alert them of any issues that might arrive, such as breaches in security or sub-par performance. The goal with monitoring is to be prepared, and to avoid any problems for the end-user. When setting up a monitoring system, it’s important to make sure that you choose the right solution, and make sure that your team is properly trained. Constant monitoring usually leads to receiving a lot of data about ongoing processes and events. It’s crucial that this data is handled in a way that it helps your organization improve operations and security, instead of slowing things down.  At Offspring, we go to considerable lengths to monitor the health of our client’s infrastructure.

4. Stay Current with Security Threats

A great way to stay vigilant is to make sure your security team is aware of the top issues that are currently affecting web applications. Developers should keep an eye on the top ten current web application vulnerabilities, published by the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP). Make sure that your team remains aware of the top vulnerabilities, and is held accountable for keeping threats out of your system. After all, lapses in security are expensive; the average cost for a data breach in an enterprise level business was $5.5 billion dollars in 2011.

We are experts when it comes to application and infrastructure security here at Offspring Solutions. Our team has years of experience in keeping data safe, and ensuring that applications are developed, deployed, and managed properly to minimize risk. Whether it’s modernizing legacy code, training security teams, or setting up monitoring processes with data analytics, Offspring Solutions can help your business operate smarter and safer. Give us a call at (703) 277-7752 to see how Offspring Solutions can help you safeguard your data today.

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