One area that many government investigative offices evaluate is their agency’s use of technology. In some cases, old technology slows the agency down, because it crashes or isn’t compatible with new software. In some cases, agency technology is difficult to support because the hardware or software is antiquated, and it’s difficult to find suppliers or programmers. And in the most dangerous cases, the software relies on outdated middleware or encryption techniques (this puts the data at risk for loss or theft).
Unfortunately, investigative agencies aren’t immune from cyberthreats either. They make especially attractive targets because their data is extremely sensitive and cannot be easily reconstructed if lost. Here are three simple steps investigative agencies can take to keep a stronger security posture.
Lock Your Computer!
Make sure your computer is locked whenever you step away from it. This is especially true if you’re not in a secured space, are travelling, or at a public conference. It is shocking how fast a computer can be compromised if someone has physical access to an unlocked PC. Last year, researchers identified 29 different ways a simple USB drive can compromise computers – some of these take a few seconds of access.
Safeguard Your Data
If your case data is stored anywhere on your agency’s network, make sure you have a full understanding of who can view and edit this information. This can present a problem if the agency’s IT department has access to case data and somebody on that same team is under an investigation. Additionally, make sure the data is backed up to a secondary location. Otherwise, if malware hits your agency, investigation case data may be unrecoverable.
Don’t Use Shared Passwords
Do you use your government network password for any other things in your life? If so, this could put the entire team’s data in jeopardy. Billions of passwords have been hacked or leaked in the past ten years. It’s relatively easy to tie a personal email address to a person, and to find that person’s work email. If the shared password is hacked, five minutes of research may be all that’s required for a hacker to use your credentials to log into your organization’s network – or any other account where you use the same password.
To learn how CMTS can help your agency track cases more efficiently, call us at 855-667-8877 or email us at Team_CMTS@MyCMTS.com.