Chat with us, powered by LiveChat
678-389-6200

What is Daas?

The world of cloud computing seems to be a bottomless well of new and exciting acronyms. You may have heard of SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS — but here is one you might not be as familiar with, Desktop-as-a-Service or DaaS.

Desktop as a Service (DaaS) is a cloud computing offering where a cloud service provider like mPowered IT delivers virtual desktops to end users over the Internet, licensed with a per-user subscription.

What is Daas?

The world of cloud computing seems to be a bottomless well of new and exciting acronyms. You may have heard of SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS — but here is one you might not be as familiar with, Desktop-as-a-Service or DaaS.

Desktop as a Service (DaaS) is a cloud computing offering where a cloud service provider like mPowered IT delivers virtual desktops to end users over the Internet, licensed with a per-user subscription.

So, what are the advantages of Desktop as a Service?

Desktop as a Service offers some clear advantages over a traditional desktop model. Deploying or decommissioning active end users with DaaS is much faster and less expensive.

1.Faster deployment and decommissioning of active end users: The desktop is already configured, it just needs to be connected to a new device. For seasonal businesses that consistently spikes and drops in demand or employees, DaaS can save a lot of time and money.

  1. Cost savings:Because the devices that run DaaS require much less computing power than a traditional desktop machine or laptop, they are less expensive and use less power.
  2. Increased device flexibility:DaaS runs on a variety of operating systems and device types, which supports the trend of users bringing their own devices into the office and shifts the burden of supporting the desktop on all of those devices to the cloud service provider.
  3. Enhanced security:Because the data is stored in the data center with DaaS, security risks are considerably lower. If a laptop or mobile device is stolen, it can simply be disconnected from the service. Since none of the DaaS data lives on that stolen device, the risk of a thief accessing sensitive data is lower. Security patches and updates are also easier to install in a DaaS environment because all of the desktops can be updated simultaneously from a remote location.

The benefits of DaaS include simplified management, increased flexibility, and lower cost of ownership compared to traditional models. Businesses that aim to offer remote work options and personal device flexibility can use DaaS to quickly and easily create a digital workspace. Users may log in to their virtual desktop from anywhere, via many different kinds of devices, and their desktop will look exactly the same as when they last visited from a different location. All they need is an internet connection. Since the data lives in a centralized, remote location, it can be constantly backed up – no need for users to manage back-ups on their own or worry about data existing on a computer at the office but not at home.

To learn more, book a free, zero obligation custom consultation with the CEO of mPowerd IT. You can aslo give us a call at 678-389-6200.

4 Ways to Help Schools Secure Their Remote Learning Environments

The continuation of homeschooling and remote learning has been challenging for parents, educators, students, and school IT administrators. Even before remote learning became the norm, schools were major targets for cyberattacks. According to the K-12 Cybersecurity Resource Center, since 2016, there have been at least 775 publicly disclosed cyber incidents against educational institutions in the U.S. alone. Further, the number of incidents more than doubled between 2018 and 2019, increasing from 122 to 348.

Now that more students and teachers are using both their own and school-issued devices from remote locations, school IT administrators are being swamped with technical issues, which is diverting IT resources away from cybersecurity. Cybercriminals are taking full advantage of the chaos, prompting the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation to issue a formal warning regarding the cyberthreats posed by insufficiently secured remote education platforms.

Here are 4 ways password management and cybersecurity solutions help school IT administrators keep teachers and staff members, students, and parents secure.

1. Establish & enforce good password hygiene

Since Verizon estimates that about 80% of successful data breaches can be traced back to stolen or compromised passwords, ensuring that all staff members, parents, and students are practicing good password hygiene is crucial to securing online education platforms.

2. Enforce role-based access

Role-based access control (RBAC) and least-privilege are critical in all organizations, and arguably even more so in a remote education environment, where staff members, students, and parents all require different levels of access to different systems.

3. Prevent password overload & eliminate password-reset requests

Password overload is a serious issue. According to a survey by Digital Guardian, 70% of consumers have over 10 password-protected online accounts, and 30% have “too many to count.” In remote education environments, password overload problems are compounded in households that include multiple school-age children, on multiple grade levels and possibly attending multiple schools, all using their own systems.

4. Prevent phishing attacks

Cybercriminals are using the remote learning boom to take advantage of tech-challenged parents (and educators) and attempting to get them to enter their login credentials on phony lookalike sites with domain names that are just a tad different; for example, ABCE1ementary-dot-com instead of ABCElementary-dot-com.

Secure your school today

Reach out to mPowered IT today and discover how simple and affordable it is to protect your institution and its staff members, parents, and students against password-related cyber attacks.

Are you interested in learning more on how an MSP could help your organization stay safe? Give us a call at 678-389-6200 or visit mPoweredIT.com.

Critical Update From Microsoft: Remote Desktop Services

Impacted Systems:

  • Windows Server 2003
  • Windows XP
  • Windows7
  • Windows Server 2008

Nonimpacted Systems:

  • Windows 10
  • Windows Server 2016
  • Windows Server 2019

If you are still using Windows Server 2003 or XP, Windows 7, Windows 2008 R2, or Windows 2008 you could be in trouble. A wormable virus may be coming your way. The virus is designated as CVE-2019-0708.

CVE-2019-0708

This means that the virus can get into your system without you doing anything like clicking a malicious link. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights without your knowledge.

What Should You Do?

Microsoft has released a critical update for their Remote Desktop Services that impacts multiple Windows versions. The patches are for devices and systems that are both in and out-of-support, which is rare for Microsoft to do. This shows the importance of these patches.

The update addresses the vulnerability by correcting how Remote Desktop Services handles connection requests. To apply the patches, go to the Microsoft Security Update Guide for in-support systems and KB4500705 for out-of-support systems.

Note: Clients & Customers on a valid managed services agreement are being taken care of and there is no immediate action for any computer, server or other devices under a valid managed services agreement.

Microsoft recommends that customers running one of these operating systems download and install the update as soon as possible.

Does This Mean Even Systems Without Support Can Get The Patch?

Yes, Microsoft is aware that some customers are running versions of Windows that no longer receive mainstream support. This means that you wouldn’t have received any security updates to protect your systems from the CVE-2019-0708 virus.

Given the potential impact on customers and their businesses, Microsoft decided to make security updates available for platforms that are no longer in mainstream support.

All Windows updates are available from the Microsoft Update Catalog.

What Should We Do Before We Apply The Update?

It’s recommended that you back up all of your important data first. If you have a reliable backup, if the patch creates problems you can still access your data. You should do this before you install any patches.

What If We Can’t Apply The Patches?

If you can’t apply the patch for your system there are other things that you can do:

  • If you don’t need the Remote Desktop Services, you can disable it.
  • Block the TCP port 3389 (this prevents unauthorized requests from the Internet).
  • Enable NLA (Network Level Authentication) for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008.

Of course, the best thing to do is to contact your local IT services company. They’ll know exactly what to do.

What Is A Wormable Virus?

This means that any future malware that uses this vulnerability could propagate from one vulnerable computer to another. This is how similar malware like WannaCry spread around the world. Experts are worried that this flaw could be used to fuel a fast-moving malware threat like the WannaCry ransomware attacks of 2017.

Here’s what Simon Pope, director of incident response for the Microsoft Security Response Center tells us:

“This vulnerability is pre-authentication and requires no user interaction,” Pope said. “In other words, the vulnerability is ‘wormable,’ meaning that any future malware that exploits this vulnerability could propagate from vulnerable computer to vulnerable computer in a similar way as the WannaCry malware spread across the globe in 2017. It is important that affected systems are patched as quickly as possible to prevent such a scenario from happening.”

Have There Been Any Attacks Yet?

Microsoft said they haven’t found evidence of attacks against this dangerous security flaw. But one could happen at any time. Right now they are trying to prevent a serious, imminent threat with these patches.

Simon Pope goes on to say:

“While we have observed no exploitation of this vulnerability, it is highly likely that malicious actors will write an exploit for this vulnerability and incorporate it into their malware.”

What Does The Microsoft Remote Desktop Do?

You use the Microsoft Remote Desktop application to connect to a remote PC or virtual apps and desktops made available by your admin. You can control your desktop computer and all of its contents from another computer.

The app lets you connect to your desktop from wherever you are. The access to the remote desktop happens over the Internet or via another network. It lets you interact as if you were physically working from your desktop.

The Remote Desktop application also gives the “master” computer access to all of the contents on the remote computer.

What Else Should We Know?

If you had updated from Windows 7 to Windows 10 or from Windows Servers 2008/2008 R2 to Windows Server 2016 or 2019, you wouldn’t need to worry. This is why it’s essential to keep your systems up to date.

Soon, on January 14, 2020, support will come to an end for all Windows Server 2008, 2008 R2 equipment and the Windows 7 operating system.

If you’re still using these servers or operating system, it’s crucial to replace them now so that there’s no disruption to your daily operations or loss of data.

Any hardware or software product that reaches its end of life is a potential gateway for hackers to enter through. In addition to the security hazard, there are other reasons why it isn’t a good idea to keep using old equipment such as unresolvable outages.

Where Can We Get Help?

Contact us to ensure your Microsoft desktops and servers are secure and protected from unauthorized intrusions.

Web Analytics