Tech support has changed dramatically in the past 30–40 years. Decades ago, most personal computers (PCs) were used at work or at school; the average person didn’t have a household PC. Original PCs were hefty and not easily transportable. Fast-forward to today, and everyone is toting pocket-sized smartphones, in addition to their tablets, home laptops, e-readers, work laptops, and so on. Software updates of yore were typically done infrequently and in person. As viruses and cyberthreats began to emerge, regular automated anti-virus updates became the norm. Today, we have a highly efficient and secure 21st century version of in-person updates – Network Operations Centers.
WHAT IS A NETWORK OPERATIONS CENTER?
A Network Operations Center (NOC) is a centralized location within an organization where business services (such as databases, external services, firewalls, and networks) are monitored around the clock. From a security point of view, an NOC acts as the first line of defense against network attacks and disruptions. NOCs are equipped to address low-level network issues, such as password resets, while also being equipped to address more complex problems, such as disaster recovery and cyber breaches.
Here is an overview of the primary services that most NOCs provide.
Proactively assessing vulnerabilities in your IT security systems is step one in resolving potential threats and risks. By monitoring your full IT ecosystem (including networks, hardware systems, and applications), NOCs will report on any issues that are discovered and will make recommendations for corrective action.
Virus and Malware Protection
Malware is any type of malicious software that conspires to steal data (either by tricking victims into providing it or by accessing it illicitly) or assume control of computers and systems.
Similar to their namesake in the health world, computer viruses are spread by attaching themselves to files and programs, which are then distributed through infected websites and emails. All that is needed to activate the virus is for the receiver to open the file – easily done when considering some of the creative and customized ways in which viruses are transmitted. (We’re looking at you, PayPal and Apple phishing emails.) Once opened, the virus wreaks havoc by deleting files, encrypting files, even by disabling system functions.
Being a victim of cybercrime is a true nightmare scenario for organizations. Proper virus and malware protection can help to save your organization from ever having to experience it firsthand.
Server Status and Network Status Monitoring
Servers are critical to organizations. They work around the clock to store, send, and process data. Server outages lead to lost productivity, revenue loss, and significant downtime. Network problems are an age-old issue that can cripple an organization’s operations and affect business performance.
A network monitoring system detects devices, and other elements that encompass or touch the network, and provides status updates. Devices such as desktops and printers that are not critical do not need frequent monitoring, but servers, routers, and switches that perform mission-critical tasks simultaneously or have certain parameters should be monitored regularly.
A primary function of an NOC is to detect problems in your network as soon as they occur. Your engineer or technician will solve the problem before it causes any damage.
An NOC provides monitoring services to detect and correct infrastructure incidents. An NOC processes alarms from network, server, and application monitoring solutions, and alarms are delivered in real time. Issues monitoring may include restarting your servers, resetting network interfaces, restarting crashed applications, introducing remote system triage, and solving a variety of problems remotely.
NETWORK OPERATIONS CENTERS GIVE BUSINESSES A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE
An NOC is more than simply a help center. While daily tech support and troubleshooting is a component of the NOC business model, it is only a fraction of the value that an NOC brings. An NOC is a 24/7 security option for businesses that need protection and proactive network monitoring outside of normal business hours.
The right NOC will be able to tailor the parts of its offering to your business, such as the time of day it monitors your network, the security software it installs on your network, and much more.
The right NOC gives you the value of efficient, qualified employees who not only monitor the network, but also bring to your attention any disruption or failure.
The right NOC (over time) perfects best practices and develops new ones based on the data and insights from incident reports. Their technicians should be working on the problems that arise to keep the business as it should be.
The right NOC evaluates data and explores ways to improve your daily operations.
The right NOC tracks network activity to identify problems before they escalate.
All of this culminates in a tremendous competitive advantage over organizations that are not working with an NOC. In today’s customer-centric environment, businesses need every single available tool at their disposal to deliver and grow.
THE RIGHT NOC IS MEDICINE BOW TECHNOLOGIES
Organizations across Wyoming and Northern Colorado, in industries ranging from healthcare to business to government to education, can testify to the value that Medicine Bow Technologies has brought to their security and operations.
Just a few of the standard practices and services that Medicine Bow Technologies brings to their clientele:
- 24X7 on-call services
- Leading industry monitoring tools
- Routine reports with details on any resolved issues
- Real-time monitoring
- Quality enterprise technology solutions
Tech support has changed drastically in recent years. And it will continue to change drastically. Get Wyoming’s leading IT management and cybersecurity specialists onside so you can focus on growing your business, rather than focusing valuable and limited resources on the ever-changing complexities of IT security. Reach out today to experience the Medicine Bow Technologies difference.