Tag Archives: SMB

Synology World Backup Day 2024 Briefing + Demo!

Ahead of World Backup Day on March 31, Synology held an exclusive briefing and demo of its cutting-edge data management, and security features! Watch the video, and find out what Synology demonstrated!


Synology World Backup Day 2024 Briefing + Demo!

On 21 March 2024, Jason Sin, Country Manager at Synology Malaysia, gave an exclusive briefing and demo of its latest data management, and security features, in Kuala Lumpur.

The live session showcased Synology’s exclusive backup features like Active Backup Suite, and Snapshot Replication; highlighting practical use cases against malicious access, accidental deletion, and ransomware threats.

Jason Sin also emphasised the importance of data integrity, and data recovery in the face of virus or ransomware attacks.

Recommended : Synology DiskStation DS223j 2-Bay NAS Review!

During his presentation, he showcased three critical phases of a robust data protection process using Synology solutions:

Prevention of Ransomware Attacks

Synology demonstrated Secure SignIn, a secure login framework designed to enhance account security of Synology DiskStation Manager (DSM), the operating system that powers every Synology NAS.

This feature verifies sign-ins using multiple methods, including approved sign-ins, verification codes (OTP), and hardware security keys. This allows users and businesses to significantly reduce the risk of unauthorised access and potential ransomware attacks.

Centralised Data Protection

Active Backup for Business is Synology’s all-in-one data protection solution. Synology highlighted its ability to centralise protection across diverse IT environments, including virtualised environments, physical servers, file servers, and personal computers.

In the demo session, Synology showcased how administrators can efficiently deploy and manage data protection strategies through a centralised admin console, ensuring comprehensive backup coverage and seamless continuity of operations.

Recommended : 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) Hard Disk Drive Review!

Comprehensive, Streamline Data Recovery

Synology demonstrated how Snapshot Replication efficiently streamlined data recovery, providing backup capabilities against threats like accidental deletion and viruses. Synology also simulated a ransomware attack by encrypting a file, followed by a swift data recovery conducted through Snapshot Replication.

This showcased its effectiveness in restoring systems to a previous state and emphasized that only a rapid, comprehensive data solution is effective for both end users and enterprises. Administrators can configure scheduled snapshots and retention settings, ensuring efficient data management and recovery, even in scenarios where ransomware attacks occur.


Selected Synology NAS Drives

If you are interested in purchasing Synology NAS drives, here are some highly-rated options you can buy online.

Please note that Tech ARP may receive a referral fee through these and other purchase links.


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WD NAS Can’t Be Seen In Windows? Here Are The Solutions!

You may be wondering why your WD NAS is no longer visible in Windows 10.

Where did it go? How do you get it back?

Find out why your WD NAS cannot no longer be seen in Windows, and what are the solutions!


WD NAS Can’t Be Seen In Windows : What Happened?

You may have been using your WD NAS for some time, but one day, its network share – the “drive” that you directly access – can no longer be seen in Windows 10.

The NAS links in Windows File Explorer will only lead you to the login page for the WD NAS management page, not the actual drive where you can directly read, copy, write or edit your files.

All these NAS issues are happening because Microsoft disabled the Network Browse function from Windows 10 v1709 onwards.

The problems started after Windows 10 Fall Creators Update 1709, which :

The Computer Browser service relies on the SMB 1.0 protocol to discover network devices and display them in the Windows Network Neighbourhood.

Disabling SMB 1.0 breaks the Computer Browser service, so it is automatically uninstalled and your NAS drives “disappear” from Network Neighbourhood.

Disabling guest access prevents guest or public access to your NAS drives, even to folders you specifically set to allow for public access. Hence, the Public folder they had access to earlier “disappears”.


Why Did Microsoft Disable Those Network Features?

The SMB1 network protocol was first implemented in Windows back in 1992, so it’s old… very old.

It’s so old that it lacks encryption. Everything transmitted via SMB1 can be captured and read, and even modified, by any attacker who gains access to the network.

Guest logins even on SMB2 do not support standard security features like signing and encryption. This makes them vulnerable to man-in-the-middle attacks.

That’s why Microsoft (finally) disabled them both, starting with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update 1709.


WD NAS Can’t Be Seen In Windows : Before We Start…

Preliminary Step #1 : Update Your NAS

Before you do anything, you should log into your WD NAS management system and update its firmware, in case it’s not already set to automatically update.

Updating its firmware will ensure that your NAS supports at least SMB 2, if not SMB 3 as well.

WD NAS Windows URL macOS URL
My Cloud EX2100 http://wdmycloudex2100 http://wdmycloudex2100.local
My Cloud DL2100 http://wdmyclouddl2100 http://wdmyclouddl2100.local
My Cloud EX4100 http://wdmycloudex4100 http://wdmycloudex4100.local
My Cloud DL4100 http://wdmyclouddl4100 http://wdmyclouddl4100.local

Preliminary Step #2 : Use A Higher SMB Protocol

Then, enable the highest SMB protocol your WD NAS supports (Settings > Network). Set it to SMB 3 if possible.

This will ensure that both your WD NAS and your network support the most secure network protocol possible, for your security.


WD NAS Can’t Be Seen In Windows : The Solutions!

Best Solution : Map Your WD NAS By Device Name

The best way is to manually map your WD NAS by its device name. This lets you use the more secure SMB2 or SMB3 network protocols, with direct access to your files as usual.

  1. Determine your WD NAS network path, which is based on the device name.If you changed your WD NAS device name to TechARPCloud (for example), the network name will be \\TechARPCloudHere is a list of default network paths for different WD NAS :
WD NAS Default Network Path
My Cloud Home \\MYCLOUD-last 6 digits of serial number
Example : \\MYCLOUD-123456
My Cloud Home Duo
My Cloud Mirror Gen 2
My Cloud EX2100 \\WDMYCLOUDEX2100
My Cloud EX4100 \\WDMYCLOUDEX4100
My Cloud DL2100 \\WDMYCLOUDDL2100
My Cloud DL4100 \\WDMYCLOUDDL4100
My Cloud PR2100 \\MYCLOUDPR2100
My Cloud PR4100 \\MYCLOUDPR2100
  1. Open Windows File Explorer and click on Network on the left pane.
  2. Key in the network path of the WD NAS, which is based on its device name. Make sure you include \\ before the network path.

  1. You will be asked to key in a user name and password.
    This can be the administrator’s login, or the login of any registered user of your WD NAS.
    Remember – Windows 10 no longer allows guest logins or public access. So you will need to create a password-protected account even for guests to use.

  1. Once you successfully authenticate your user name and password, the network shares of your WD NAS will become visible in File Explorer under Network!You can stop here, but you will need to keep keying in the network path and login to access your NAS every time you boot into Windows.

  1. For more convenience, you can create a password-protected Private Share.Start by right-clicking on a network share from your WD NAS and select Map network drive…

  1. Select a drive letter for the network share.
    Check Reconnect at sign-in if you don’t want to automatically log into the drive.
    Then click Finish to map the drive.

That’s it! If you expand This PC in Windows File Explorer, you should now see that the WD NAS network drive has now been mapped by its device name!


Alternate Solution : Enable Network Discovery Without SMB1

This Windows 10 workaround can be used if your WD NAS supports SMB2 or SMB3 and you prefer not to map the network drives.

  1. Go to Windows Services.
  2. Start these two services :
    Function Discovery Provider Host
    Function Discovery Resource Publication
  3. Set the Startup type for both those services to Automatic (Delayed Start).
  4. Open Windows File Explorer and go to Network.
  5. When prompted, enable Network Discovery.

Your WD NAS shares should now be visible in Windows File Explorer.


Worst Case Solution : Enable Network Discovery Without SMB1

This should only be attempted if your WD NAS simply cannot support SMB2 or SMB3, and can only use SMB1.

  1. Go to Control Panel > Programs.
  2. Click on Turn Windows features on or off.
  3. Expand the SMB 1.0/CIFS File Sharing Support option.
  4. Check the SMB 1.0/CIFS Client option.
  5. Click the OK button.
  6. Restart Windows 10

After Windows 10 restarts, your WD NAS shares should now be visible in Windows File Explorer.


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Setting Up A Secure Storage System For Team Collaboration

Small businesses often operate in lean teams, with each staff member behaving as a “jack of all trades.” This attitude can be useful for acquiring customers and putting in the extra effort SMBs sometimes need, but it doesn’t work for data management and security.

Cyberattacks are not only a risk to large companies like Target or Sony, but are a costly danger to small businesses as well. According to a report by the National Small Business Association, 50 percent of small businesses experienced a cyberattack in 2014, costing an average of more than $20,750.

Storing, managing and protecting sensitive company and customer data is a cumbersome process that can become even more daunting with an expanding team. With tight budgets and an often non-existent IT department, implementing a strong system becomes even more challenging.

Small businesses need a secure storage solution that offers cloud access with local back-up abilities and is scalable (that is, robust enough to meet their current needs, but also able to grow and adapt to future demands). Here are four steps a small business should take to set up and maintain a strong, fast and adaptable secure storage system:


1. Identify needs and create a plan.

Work with your key decision makers to determine what kind of file access and management the business needs. Does your sales team need access to documents outside of the office, or does your customer service team need to be able to review complete customer records at any given time?

Identify who in the organization needs access to which data, and develop a written plan. The file management plan should include who will manage the content and be responsible for data backups and who has access to the most sensitive information. The plan will also help determine what storage hardware solutions best fit your needs.


2. Set up a scalable storage server.

A network attached storage (NAS) device is an easy and affordable solution that allows designated users to share and access files, media and more from multiple computers and devices. Instead of being tethered by USB cables, users can access data across the business’ personal cloud, via your Wi-Fi network, and still back up data locally.

At a minimum, you’ll want to choose storage that gives you the ability to manage permissions and folder privileges. But to maximize your investment, you should look for a drive that can scale. Some storage drives, like Western Digital’s Red Drive, are built from the ground up to combine easily, so that as your business grows, it’s easy to increase the number of users needing access.

With the WD Red drive, your employees are able to quickly share their files and back up folders reliably. It also comes with software that enables seamless integration with your existing network infrastructure.


3. Optimize systems to maximize performance.

Be sure to keep your entire technology network up to date before, during and after installation of a storage server. Ensuring a healthy ecosystem of your storage, router, and modem units is crucial to delivering services to customers in a timely manner and avoiding bottlenecks in the system.


4. Enable and manage user access.

When storing sensitive company data, restrictions on security and access are your primary concern. Implement a storage system that allows you to grant file access to those that need it, and rescind it for those that don’t. User access should be described in detail in the written plan, so staff know exactly where to place and find the data they need.

Small businesses typically try to grow quickly, which means shifting roles and responsibilities. When new employees come on, and old ones depart, make sure you are able to maintain control of all of your data. When an employee leaves, revoke access immediately, and when on-boarding an employee, take the time to review your policies and expectations when handling company data and information.


5. Develop a good file naming strategy and folder structure.

[adrotate banner=”4″]Keeping your centralized storage system organized, makes it less likely that information will be mismanaged. “Document A” and “Spreadsheet 3” are useless filenames when you are searching through hundreds of documents for one particular file. Use names that are meaningful, but still short.

To help with version control, employ a date and initial system that tells you when and who last updated the document. Descriptive folders will also help you and your team navigate media quickly. Designate folders for financial, sales and operations documents to keep everyone organized.

File storage is only one piece of the puzzle to consider when growing your business, but when properly implemented, can save you and your business thousands of dollars and countless hours. There are a lot of factors to consider, but if you take the time to determine your needs and develop an actionable plan for your company now, as well as in the future, it will give you time to explore your options and make the best choice possible.


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Trend Micro : Worst Cyber Threats Facing SMBs

Hackers have plenty of impetus for targeting large enterprises, especially government agencies, financial institutions and health care organizations. Even large entertainment firms such as Sony Pictures, retailers like Target and telecommunications companies including TalkTalk have been exploited by cyber criminals.

That said, the highest valued companies are not the easiest targets, especially since there are relatively few of them compared to the amount of small and medium-sized businesses. Hackers on the prowl will follow any and all leads to a quick payday. Often, this means firing into the crowd, so to speak.

Cyber criminals will have better success going after a larger number of targets than trying to orchestrate advanced targeted attacks against one bigwig organization. Even as cyber criminals continue to become more ambitious, in all likelihood, cyber attackers will continue to go after smaller businesses in 2016. For this reason, it’s worth reviewing some of the biggest cyber threats currently facing SMBs.


DDoS attacks

Distributed denial of service attacks represent a huge cyber threat to any business, but especially to SMBs that can only afford limited bandwidth. As hinted at in the name, the purpose of a DDoS attack is to shut down a server, thereby blocking user access to specific Web services or applications. This is accomplished by flooding network intrastate with meaningless traffic. Hence the name, the heavy distribution of requests results in a network crash.

There are countless motives for orchestrating a DDoS attack. For example, it may be executed in an attempt to shut down specific security services, so as to orchestrate a more serious, supplementary attack. However, more often than not, the goal is extortion. Hackers will flood a network, and will send ransom notes to the company stating that they won’t ease up until a certain amount of money has been paid to them. This is precisely what happened to ProtonMail in late 2015. Cyber attackers shut down the company’s central data center, and then requested a ransom of 15 Bitcoins, the rough equivalent of $6,000. In response to pressure from third parties, ProtonMail paid the ransom. However, the cyber criminals did not ease up.

The first main takeaway here is that DDoS attacks remain a significant threat to all organizations, but especially companies that offer Web-based services, and in particular, SMBs that might not have significant bandwidth. The second lesson from the incident is that any SMB that falls prey to an attack should not pay a ransom. Recovery will be time consuming, and will most likely impact revenue. However, paying cyber criminals a ransom only for them to continue the attack will result in even more lost money. When it comes to prevention, network vigilance is key. Any early signs of an impending DDoS attack may make it possible to mitigate the effects. Laying out a smart network infrastructure that can evenly distribute barrage of traffic may also alleviate some of the strain.


Striking the point of sale

Point-of-sale malware is not a new cyber threat, but it’s one that has become especially prominent in the past few years. According to Trend Micro, SMBs were hit particularly hard in 2015, having accounted for 45 percent of all scenarios involving POS malware. Everything from restaurants to boutiques to small service providers are heavily targeted, mainly because cyber security is not quite as strong for these companies. Not to mention, smart, sneaky new strains of POS malware are always being created.

For example, Trend Micro researchers recently discovered a form of malware that seeks out POS systems in a network. Dubbed “Black Atlas,” the malware does not appear to target specific companies in any particular industry. However, SMBs are the most likely to be affected.

Other POS threats come in the form of skimmers. These are basically rigged payment processing units that are designed to collect card information, which is then sold on the Dark Web. Part of the reason this is such a big problem for SMBs is because smaller businesses are more likely to purchase less-expensive, poorly vetted card payment systems. Some of these are actually pre-configured with skimmers. In fact, Trend Micro noted that in China, cyber criminals can actually receive text messages every time a skimmer successfully plunders payment information.

In order to avoid being snagged by a POS malware scam, SMBs are encouraged to always purchase verified, well-known payment processing systems. This will significantly reduce the threat of skimmers. Defending against POS malware is slightly more complicated as strains continue to become more elaborate, and generally more difficult to detect. There have been several cases in the past few months of hotel chains having customer payment information stolen as a direct result of POS malware.

The good news, however, is that the use of EMV chip technology significantly reduces the chances of payment information being pilfered. Rather than using the same code for every transaction – as magnetic stripes do – these chips generate a single-use script for each purchase, so that even if hackers to manage to collect this information, it is essentially useless.

Therefore, SMBs are encouraged to make the shift to EMV card processing systems as soon as possible, especially considering that as of October 2015, liability for stolen payment data shifted to merchants. Any business that does not have EMV card reading technology, and is hacked, can therefore be held accountable for the ensuing damages. Many small businesses can hardly afford to become the victim of a POS malware ploy, let along cover subsequent legal damages.


Phishing scams

Phishing scams will always be a problem for companies of all sizes. As long as corporations continue to fall for these ploys, hackers will work tirelessly to bring down their targets, which include SMBs. Much like DDoS attacks, modern phishing scams often take the extortion angle. One of the most prominent, recent examples is the notorious CryptoLocker strain. There are various forms of encryption malware, and many of them start off as phishing scams.

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Basically, an employee might receive an email with a request to download a certain PDF or XML. In theory, an aware user should be cognizant of the danger involved with downloading a shady file, but on a particularly busy day, a phishing email may trick even the most wary of workers. Upon opening the cleverly disguised executable, files on the network are locked down. What typically follows is a payment request in order to decrypt the files.

Other phishing ploys might target social media portals, so as to take control of an account. For an SMB that relies on its Web presence to drive traffic to brick-and-mortar locations – for example, a restaurant, bar or mechanic shop – a hacked company Facebook page isn’t exactly choice marketing. Regardless of the targeted medium, a phishing scam can cause serious productivity setbacks for SMBs.

When it comes to securing against phishing scams and cyber threats in general, employee vigilance is hugely important. Granted, even this won’t always be enough to prevent a business from becoming the victim of a cyber attack. For the real tricky threats, SMBs will have to rely on threat protection.

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