Is my house or plant attractive to criminals? (Part 2)

Is my house or plant attractive to criminals? (Part 2)

by 31. July 2018

In this second part of my blog post “Is my house attractive to criminals” I shall be talking about…

The right security instruments: private homes versus company assets

Security is something that has to be considered holistically, meaning that modern, modular security technologies which build on one another in terms of content are a must. They turn your home and your assets into a fortress which is virtually impregnable to attack by (cyber)criminals no matter how swiftly they strike.Police security analysis

For personal and individual advice, don’t hesitate to contact your local crime prevention office. You can only identify and remove vulnerabilities if someone competent to do so takes a close look at your house or apartment through the eyes of an intruder. In the next step, you can then secure all windows and doors to the same high standard. For a list of crime prevention offices in Germany, see: www.polizei-beratung.de/beratungsstellen

1. Evaluate your plant’s current security risk

A security risk communication procedure entails working through the questionnaire together with the technical plant manager to determine the actual situation regarding your security measures. The questionnaire covers several different topics including:

‘System Hardening’

Are people required to use dedicated mobile storage devices such as USB sticks?

‘Antivirus Software’

Do defined policies exist for antivirus solutions?

When was the antivirus software last updated?

‘Patch Management’

Is patch management automated?

‘Backup & Recovery’

What backup & recovery measures are implemented?

Once the questionnaire has been completed, the necessary individual security measures are recommended and / or realized.

2. Support from relatives, friends or neighbors – Regular checks

Get relatives, friends or neighbors to empty your mail slot regularly.
If you’re planning on being absent for a while, you could also ask them to mow your lawn occasionally.

To make sure your plant systems are always protected as efficiently as possible, you should check them frequently for viruses. And as an additional preventive measure against malware, ensure that antivirus software and Microsoft security updates are installed at regular – for instance, monthly – intervals.

3. Your house guardian – Malware Inactivated Service – Whitelisting

Another possibility might be to place your home in the custody of a house guardian, who moves in while you’re away. House guardians are usually arranged by an agency. It’s imperative, of course, that you get them to show you their police clearance certificate, testimonials and ID card. And don’t forget to ask them whether they’re covered by public liability or accident insurance in the event of damage.

The house guardian for your assets is a whitelist. This is a list of permitted programs which is designed to prevent the execution of infectious malware. If you choose this solution, a whitelist is automatically generated and implemented.

4. Potential ways into your home – USB port locks help protect your company

– Is the front door key hidden somewhere outside?
– Are all windows, balcony doors and basement windows secured with adequate locks and not tilted?
– Are all outside doors secured with adequate locks and have you double-locked them?
– Has the power to all outdoor sockets been switched off?
– Are all ladders, garden furniture, garbage cans and other objects (tools) that are otherwise left lying around outside the house locked away or secured with a chain? These are precisely the kind of thing that criminals love to use as a climbing aid.

Various special settings allow you to deprive a cybercriminal of his favorite tools, for instance by preventing the unauthorized use of USB storage media. You can do this either on the logical (operating system) or on the physical (BIOS and / or hardlock) level. You’ll find it’s a very effective way to rule out infection by malware.

5. Homeowner’s insurance – Software Backup Service

If your home does get broken into in spite of all your precautions, you can at least claim compensation for the financial damage through your homeowner’s policy. It’s a good idea to check regularly that the insured amount is enough to cover the current value of your furnishings and valuables and increase it if necessary.
Software backups not only minimize downtime at workstations (HIS); they also guarantee the security and integrity of your data. Yokogawa uses external hard drives to back up the system and data disks of your HISes and ensure the continuity and reliability of all data backups.

6. Smart home systems – AV / OS Update Service

Smart home applications are both convenient and secure. Before you leave on vacation, you should switch on the presence control feature, so that you can simulate various lighting scenarios – for example, in order to switch on the living room light temporarily at irregular intervals. I also recommend that you leave the lights on at night in those parts of the house that are particularly at risk and, if roller blinds are fitted, to program them to open and close at different times of the day and night. It can also make sense to get the radio and television to come on temporarily at random times or to use the remote control function to see who is ringing the doorbell. In this case, don’t forget to inform your neighbors that you’ve set a timer switch. After all, you don’t want them calling the police by mistake! Our AV / OS Update Service lets you update the operating system on your computer regularly and download any new virus signatures required by your AV software. That way, your system always has the latest security information “at its fingertips”.

7. Advice from the crime prevention office – Regular updates on security issues

For maximum protection against intruders, you need to get up to date regularly with the latest measures and actions. This is no less important for your assets, of course. Ongoing reviews of your security measures for effectiveness and completeness are advocated, so that a remedy can be found quickly if need be. Timely information on antivirus software updates or Microsoft security patches, which pays attention to compatibility with your assets, is also vital.

Unfortunately, no matter how much effort you invest, one-hundred-percent security for your home or your assets can never be guaranteed. On the other hand, you can severely mitigate the threat of break-in by defining suitable milestones and combining advanced technologies with simple solutions tailored to your practical needs. No matter how big or small your enterprise network, it would be unthinkable today without security tools. They’ve become a crucial security factor in the battle against ransomware and other forms of attack which directly target your company’s assets. And as another welcome side-effect, they help you meet compliance regulations.

Do you have any questions or comments about security? Do not hesitate and contact us!


Is my house or plant attractive to criminals? (Part 1)

Plant security – the decisive move

A stable foundation for the digital future of plants

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