Critical Infrastructure: A New Cyberthreat Vector

For anyone who still thinks that hackers are going after the mainframe, there’s good news afoot: They’re not. In fact, mainframes have been borderline obsolete for about a decade now. At this point, they’re mostly good for spare parts.
Anyone who is concerned that ISIS might be trying to wiggle their way into the power grid to create mass chaos, or that air conditioners can be used to create a large-scale blackout, on the other hand, is very much on to something.
High-stakes cybercrime
ISIS has in fact been attempting to hack into the U.S. power grid with the apparent intent to “turn off or blow up machines,” according to CNN. The good news is that they’re really bad at it. They don’t have the technological wherewithal at present to actually succeed in this wildly ambitious endeavor. The bad news, however, is that some cybercriminals do, and they recently proved it in a real-world scenario.
A blackout in Ukraine on Dec. 23, 2015 that affected hundreds of thousands of people was recently confirmed to be the work of highly coordinated, sophisticated hackers. The attack leveraged nasty malware that wreaked havocon computers and knocked out control systems. The attack was orchestrated to target six big power providers simultaneously. The methods were so effective, that “even the call centers used to report outages were knocked out,” per CNN.
One might call this “The Starry Night” of cyberattacks. Frighteningly, whoever’s responsible for the malicious masterpiece is still out there.
If you’re not thoroughly alarmed by this, then perhaps the fact that air conditioners can be used to hack the power grid will raise a few red flags. According to Wired, cybersecurity experts have identified a way in which remote controls of air conditioning units can be overridden, and used to cause an outage duringpeak energy times.
Some utility companies will offer a discount to customers who agree to have devices installed on AC units that allow the provider to shut off the system when demand for energy is high, for example on hot summer evenings. The communication occurs via radio waves, which means hackers need only match the frequency, monitor and record commands, and then send those commands. This allows them to turn units on and off. Activating enough of them during peak summer hours could precipitate a surge capable of causing a large-scale blackout.
Last but not least, it’s worth noting that in October, think tank Chatham House identified a serious Achilles’ heel in some nuclear facilities: the inclusion of VPNs. Basically, this means that these mission-critical hubs are not as siloed off from the Internet as previously indicated. Hackers are clever. Give them an inch, and they’ll take a mile. Remember Stuxnet? With little more than a thumb drive and a cleverly crafted worm, a nuclear facility in Iran hada fifth of its nuclear centrifuges destroyed.
A thrilling time to be a cybersecurity professional
Once upon a time, people were under the impression that cybersecurity experts’ main job was to build firewalls and keep spam from breaking the computer. Given the gravity of many of cyberthreats outlined above, it would be reasonable to express nostalgia for a simpler time.
But if there’s a silver lining to all of this, it’s that the cybersecurity field just got a whole lotmore interesting. Computer science gurus who always thoughttheirskills would be best applied in an enterprise IT setting suddenly have a value proposition that entails protecting the nation’s power grid. Should a blackout occur at a large enough scale, there’s no telling what manner of chaos could ensue.
If there were ever a timeto use that basic computer training as a springboard to bigger things, it would be now. The next step is to pursue more advanced certificates such as network security certification, or CompTIAsecuritycertification. As a thought leader in the Internet-of-Things-type technology that will drive innovation in the smart grid, any type of Cisco network network certification including Cisco wireless certification and Cisco security certification, will also be of extraordinary value to cybersecurity firms.
A cybersecurity sea change is at hand. Become part of the solution:Contact New Horizons today.
Don’t forget to join us March 14 – March 18 for our four day course in EC CCISO! For more details and to register, click here.
More links
Will 2016 Be the Year of Cybersecurity?There are few jobs as cool and as necessary as those within the cybersecurity realm. Professionals in this field are working on the cutting-edge of technology, using highly-refined computer based training to keep cybercriminals at bay. Working in cybersecurity is consistently challenging as hackers are constantly updating and changing their techniques in order to gain access to private data.Join the New Generation of Information Security LeadersThe CCISO (Certified Chief Information Security Officer) is an industry-leading program that recognizes the real-world experience necessary to succeed at the highest level of information securityGrowing Number of Cyberattacks Shows Need for Cybersecurity ExpertsThe stats about 2014 cybercrime are here, and they aren’t pretty. Symantec, a cybersecurity firm, has compiled a report detailing cybercrime activity in 2014. What it found was that businesses were woefully unprepared when it came to their cybersecurity needs.

Cost Effective Solution: Windows Server 2012 & Hyper-V

Virtualization: Cost-Effective Solutions by R. Lungariello
Whether you’re virtualizing your workloads or building a private cloud, the technologies available within the virtualization platform in Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V can provide cost-effective solutions. Take a quick look at these two instances:
1. Technology Specialists, Fort Wayne, IN Jay Tipton, CEO of Technology Specialists, a company that provides technology services to small businesses, called on virtualization to help a 15-employee company that needed to run multiple e-commerce sites for its business. The licensing for the software application used to run the stores required them to be managed separately.
Tipton says this business may have been forced to buy and set up three different hardware servers. But it was able to buy a single system to run all three stores-running separately using virtualization software.
2. HotSchedules in Austin, Texas Microsoft customer HotSchedules provides online services as its core product offering. Each time it adds a certain number of new customers, it needs to invest in the technology backbone to support their accounts seamlessly, even in times of peak usage. Before it moved to a virtual architecture, the company reported that it would sometimes take weeks to provision a new server.
With Hyper-V, that process has been cut down to a day or less. What’s more, the case study reports that by running up to 19 virtual machines on each of its physical servers HotSchedules was able to reduce power costs by up to 77% compared with the energy it would have needed to run a comparable number of “real” systems.
With Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V, you have the flexibility to build a server environment that can support your business needs in any phase of your IT life cycle. Here are some more benefits:
Increase Business Flexibility As virtualized datacenters become more prevalent, you need to be able to place your workloads where they fit best, and you need to be able to quickly and easily migrate your workloads between servers to best distribute the load. Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V allows you to live migrate your virtual machines and independently migrate your virtual machine storage with few limitations—from outside a clustered environment, between two clusters, and even between two servers with nothing but a network connection between them.
Increase Support for Larger Workloads To help you run the largest workloads in your virtualized environment, Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V offers support for up to 64 virtual processors and 1 terabyte of memory for your Hyper-V guests and 4,000 virtual machines on a 64-node cluster. With Hyper-V, you can support Offloaded Data Transfer and improved Quality of Service to enforce minimum bandwidth requirements (even network storage).
Increase Virtual Machine Availability High-availability options include incremental backup support, enhancements in clustered environments to support virtual Fibre Channel adapters within the virtual machine, and inbox NIC Teaming. Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V can also use server message block file shares for virtual storage. This new option is simple to provision and offers performance capabilities and features that rival those available with Fibre Channel storage area networks.
Improve Handling of Multi-tenant Environments Hyper-V multitenancy provides you with new security and multi-tenant isolation capabilities that can keep virtual machines isolated, even when they are stored on the same physical network or server. New network virtualization features in Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V can help you scale beyond virtual local area network implementations. You can place a virtual machine on a node regardless of its IP address, whether on-site, hosted, or in the cloud, making the network infrastructure truly invisible.
Additional capabilities include Resource Metering to help with showback (internal accounting) and chargeback (external customers) scenarios by giving you visibility into the use of your virtualization environment.
Provide More Options As you rely more upon virtualization, you need to be able to handle different types of requests. Some of those requests usually fall under networking options. The Hyper-V Extensible Switch within Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V gives you an open, extensible switch to help support security and management needs. You can build your own extensions, or use partner extensions to support these needs.
Hyper-V works with Microsoft System Center 2012 SP1 management tools to handle your multiserver virtualization environment. With new management support for Hyper-V, you can fully automate management tasks and help reduce the administrative overhead costs of your environment.
At New Horizons, we’re talking about IT everyday—and not just with a variety of clients, but with leading vendors—about industry trends and real-life challenges. And because of our these close partnerships, New Horizons is positioned to help businesses like yours leverage our knowledge experts to discuss strategies, implementation and troubleshooting.
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CompTIA Unveils New Groundbreaking Certification

Following on the heels of a cybercrime and the incident with the Polish Financial Supervision Authority hack, CompTIA has launched a new certification with tenants meant to proactively protect organizations. The new CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CSA+) certification is the first of its kind to bring behavioral analytics to the forefront of assessing cyber threats along with traditional methods. This newest certification to the CompTIA family is designed to bridge the skills gap between CompTIA Security+ and CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP) exams.
CSA+ applies behavioral analytics to improve IT security and validates the knowledge and skills required to protect an organization’s network. IT pros use security analytics to create threat visibility across a network. This new visibility allows them to identify and combat malware and advanced persistent threats (APTs). Behavioral analytics helps detect bad behavior on your network so you can stop the problem as quickly as possible. If a system is infected, connections it makes with a malicious server can be immediately identified and severed.
The behavioral analytics skills covered by CSA+ identify and combat malware, and advanced persistent threats (APTs), resulting in enhanced threat visibility across a broad attack surface. CompTIA CSA+ is for IT professionals looking to gain the following security analyst skills:
Configure and use threat detection tools.Perform data analysis.Interpret the results to identify vulnerabilities, threats and risks to an organization.Properly trained IT security staff who can analyze, monitor and protect cybersecurity resources are in high demand. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that information security analysts will be the fastest growing overall job category, with 37 percent overall growth between 2012 and 2022.
Follow the CompTIA cybersecurity certification pathCompTIA CSA+ bridges the skills gap betweenCompTIA Security+and theCompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP)exam to create a vendor-neutral certification path. Building on CSA+, IT professionals can pursue CASP to prove their mastery of the hands-on cybersecurity skills required at the 5- to 10-year experience level. Earn the CSA+ certification to grow your career within theCompTIA recommended cybersecurity career pathway.
In a field that is only sure to grow as even more of our modern infrastructure is stored digitally, the cyber security field is only set to grow and is sure to be a life-long career position. Have you thought about getting started with CompTIA? New Horizons Learning Group offers certification training in these in-demand such as Security+, Network+, or if you are just starting out with your new IT career, CompTIA A+. New Horizons Learning Group offers hundreds of guaranteed to run classes every month so you never need to worry about a class being cancelled.

CompTIA Certification Can Be Transformative

CompTIA Helped Launch My Career in IT
Guest Author: Brian Zibricky, Vice President of Marketing and ProductsNH Learning Solutions
In 1995, I was in my second year of teaching High School English to a group of “alternative” kids at an “alternative” high school. “Alternative” was a nice way of saying “troubled” as these were the kids who had been previously tossed out of their original high schools and were now on a perilous path, which in many cases, led to the street and in some cases to jail.
I loved my job—and more importantly, I loved helping the kids whose only semblance of family was found at our school, but at the end of my second year, I found out that the school district budget had been cut and all non-tenured teachers would be RIF’d. “RIF” was not an acronym I was familiar with, and someone had to tell me what it meant “Reduction in Force.” And so, I would have to start looking at other school districts for work.
At that point, I had to make a really tough decision: either continue in education or jump ship and start fresh in the booming Information Technology industry. After doing some research—and some soul-searching—it was obvious that IT is where I wanted to be. Windows 95 had just been introduced, and the PC-boom was about to explode. I had a natural love of technology, and I was fascinated to find out where a career in IT might take me.
It turned out my first stop was to get trained. Today at New Horizons, we train thousands of students every year that find themselves in a situation very similar to the one I was in over 18 years ago. That’s not surprising—people change careers or start new ones all of the time. What is surprising though is that the first step that many of our students take is the same one that I took in 1996—earning a CompTIA certification.
First established in 1982 as the Association of Better Computer Dealers, CompTIA has provided career-changers and career-enhancers an avenue to learn the fundamental skills necessary to be successful in the IT industry.
“My hunch was right. I earned my A+ certification and landed my first contract job days later. Once my first contract was complete, my recruiter had multiple job offers coming my way and one of them was from Castrol Industrial NA. ”
In doing the research for my new IT career, I discovered the A+ Certification. CompTIA’s A+ was introduced in 1993 and seemed to provide a perfect combination of PC hardware and Operating System information to prepare someone for their first job in IT. My hunch was right. I earned my A+ certification and landed my first contract job days later. Once my first contract was complete, my recruiter had multiple job offers coming my way and one of them was from Castrol Industrial NA.
I stayed on contract with them for a few months, and then they ended up hiring me on as an IT Support Technician. Soon after, I began studying for the CompTIA Network+ certification. Network+ is a perfect introduction to networking fundamentals like cable speeds and lengths, network types, and TCP/IP. A few years later, I moved over to a more operational role as an IT Project Specialist, managing new technology that was set to be introduced into Castrol’s network. I remained at Castrol for over four years and cemented myself in the IT industry. BP/Amoco then purchased Castrol and outsourced their IT department, so I was once again at a crossroad.
As much as I was enjoying my time working in a corporate IT Department, the classroom seemed to be calling me back. IT Training seemed to be the perfect fit. I would still be wrapped up in technology, but I would get to train new people on a consistent basis and put my teaching skills back to work. It didn’t take long for me to land at New Horizons Computer Learning Centers as a Technical Instructor specializing in CompTIA and Microsoft solutions.
I remained a Technical Instructor with them for over a decade teaching multiple CompTIA certifications such as A+, Network+, and the Security+ which was introduced in 2002. Now, I’m the Product and Marketing Manager for NH Learning Solutions, and I work directly with CompTIA to ensure we have the latest information on their upcoming exams and Product Release schedule.
I owe a lot of my IT career and the opportunities I was given to CompTIA. They enable hard working individuals with the fundamental skills necessary to make it in the IT industry. They also offer current IT people an opportunity to solidify their skills and earn career enhancing certifications. Like thousands of other individuals, the A+ certification started it all for me. That certification essentially got me my first IT job. I implemented those skills directly and then I went on to teach others those same skills. Now I work directly with CompTIA to ensure that New Horizons can offer those same opportunities to future generations of IT Professionals. What an incredible journey it has been!
Thank you for allowing me to share. If you have a similar story about how CompTIA helped transform your career, please leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you!
At New Horizons, we’re talking training everyday—and not just with a variety of clients, but with leading vendors—about industry trends and real-life challenges. And because of our close partnership with CompTIA, New Horizons is positioned to help businesses like yours leverage our knowledge experts to discuss strategies, implementation and troubleshooting.
Click here to learn about our available CompTIA Training. Also, if you found this article interesting, helpful or useful, please use the ‘Social Share’ buttons below and spread the word across your networks.

Comply To Connect – The Pentagon’s Defense Against Cyber Attacks

By 2025, it isestimatedthat there will be at least 75 billion connected devices in what is being called the “Internet of Things” (IoT). With advances in microprocessors, sensing devices, and software, pretty soon anything that can be connected will be connected.
The Pentagon’s Defense against Cyber Attacks
Here’s What You Need to Remember:Seven years ago, the DoDcreatedComply to Connect (C2C) as a way to secure its growing array of network endpoints.
The proliferation of devices on the Internet is becoming a tidal wave. In addition to your phone, computer, video game console, and television, the Internet now connects practically everything that has electronics and sensors: household appliances, heating, and air conditioning systems, cars, airplanes, ships, industrial robots, public utilities, home security systems, children’s toys, and medical devices. By 2025, it is estimated that there will be at least 75 billion connected devices in what is being called the “Internet of Things” (IoT). With advances in microprocessors, sensing devices, and software, pretty soon anything that can be connected will be connected.
It should come as no surprise that the IoT has extended to government networks, particularly those operated by the Department of Defense. At DoD, everything from motors to battlefield sensors to door access readers may come with a network connection that is required for it to perform its assigned task. In addition to this mission-supporting equipment, DoD also has a litany of consumer devices running on its networks, from printers to video monitors and cameras to refrigerators. These devices are continually communicating with one another, as well as with higher headquarters all the way back to the Pentagon. The result is what some observers call the “Internet of Battlefield Things” (IoBT). There is a consensus among experts that the military which first creates the IoBT will gain a decisive advantage over its competitors.
While the evolution of the Internet into the IoT and IoBT are generally positive developments, with their arrival comes a major cybersecurity challenge. Simply put, the more devices there are on a network, the greater the potential chance that an adversary will be able to achieve penetration. There has been no shortage of news stories about how our adversaries seek to penetrate U.S. critical infrastructure, including our power grid, government networks, and elections systems. In many instances, hackers look for easy avenues for accessing our networks through connected devices. In 2016, it was discovered that implantable cardiac devices used by St. Jude’s Hospital were vulnerable to hacking. Baby monitors have proven remarkably vulnerable to hacking.
This Nation’s adversaries are aggressively trying to penetrate the networks, systems, and even individual weapons of the DoD. An increasing amount of critical, classified information is generated by the mass of devices on the network. Recently, the military found out that the movements of troops could be compromised by accessing the fitness trackers many personnel were wearing. As more and more devices are added to the IoBT—with or without permission, the risk of penetration and the compromising of critical classified information go up.
The exponential growth of the IoT and IoBT is creating new vulnerabilities to cyber-attacks at an alarming rate. Compromised IoT/IoBT devices are increasingly the “easy” way for attackers to get a foothold inside an organization’s network. Today, a device is usually “whitelisted” onto the network, which means it is identified as “trusted.” But that trusted device can then be used to execute commands inside of your firewall, which can help hackers perform reconnaissance and, perhaps ultimately, get to other higher-value parts of a network. In addition, many unauthorized or unrecorded devices are being added to a network, thereby increasing the chances for penetration. Adversaries can attack vulnerable devices not only to get to sensitive information but to physically compromise parts of your system that you depend on, say, in a time of war. As the IoT/IOBT grows, so does the problem of device vulnerability.
What is the DoD doing about this growing vulnerability? Seven years ago, the DoDcreatedComply to Connect (C2C) as a way to secure its growing array of network endpoints.C2Cis a formal system for
1) Identifying and validating new devices that are connected to a network;
2) Evaluating their compliance with DoD security policies;
3) Conducting continuous monitoring of these devices, and;
4) Automatically addressing device issues, thereby reducing the need for maintaining cyber hygiene on cybersecurity administrators.
The C2C approach combines existing cybersecurity technologies with newer technologies to deal with the changing nature of DoD’s network architecture. The core tenet of C2C understands what devices and people are connecting to DoD networks and what their security posture is. With this knowledge, commanders can make informed risk decisions about these connections, and automatically control them based on security policies. C2C also provides DoD a way to continuously monitor the state of networks and devices—computing and non-computing networked devices—with a high degree of fidelity. The information yielded by C2C will feed into a centralized console that will provide these leaders full situational awareness of major areas of risk, which will, in turn, inform policy setting and resource allocation.
Without C2C, the DoD won’t know how many printers, industrial controllers, or refrigerators it has on its networks. It won’t know where its Windows patch management tools have stopped working. It won’t know whether Kaspersky and Huawei-made equipment have been removed from systems, as mandated by Congress. It won’t have a way to funnel network information to leadership for decision making. Lacking these fundamental capabilities, DoD will not be able to meet the basic responsibilities of securing its networks.
The U.S. Congress has twice in recent years directed DoD to move forward with implementing the C2C capability. While the U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Navy, as well as a few other DoD components, have moved forward with the implementation of this program, most of DoD has not. Congress needs to be relentless in asking DoD when it plans to fully implement C2C to secure its systems and networks against increasingly sophisticated cyber adversaries.
Securing the Outcomes of Government IT with C2C
Multiple breaches have occurred against the Federal Government and Department of Defense (DOD) institutions. Data breaches continue to increase and are expected to reach an all-time high this year. Are you prepared?
New DOD Cybersecurity Regulations Are Here
The cybersecurity challenges facing federal government agencies are more complex than ever before. The federal government has recognized the need to increase cybersecurity protection, detection, and response. This requires tools to ensure trusted users and authorized devices are rigorously inspected for malicious code, prohibited software, noncompliance, human error, and other risks.
On May 12, 2021, the Biden Administration issued an Executive Order on Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity. The order states, “Incremental improvements will not give us the security we need; instead, the federal government needs to make bold changes and significant investments to defend the vital institutions that underpin the American way of life.”
1 Additionally the policy states, “The federal government must adopt security best practices; advance toward Zero Trust architecture; accelerate movement to secure cloud services and invest in both technology and personnel to match these modernization goals.”
2 This makes it clear that the federal government recognizes the immense risk faced with protecting the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of wide-ranging applications, services, and data.
Earlier this year, a supporting DOD memorandum mandated compliance with C2C. C2C is a logical first step on the pathway Zero Trust within the DOD—successfully rolling out the C2C program, including the integration and operational turn-up of hundreds of DOD sites, to achieve the following steps that are critical to cybersecurity:
Authenticating and authorizing the endpointPolicy-based authenticationEndpoint reporting and publishing to the DOD Enterprise Endpoint RepositoryAppropriately authorizing assets to network segments, regardless of userContinuously monitoring authorized device activities through the orchestration and integration of detection and validation toolsWhat a C2C architecture provides
Verification of the identity of all users and devices With potential threats increasing against our nation, granting network access to any user and their device, before authenticating, is risky. Why? Because:
The device might not be government-ownedEven if the device is permitted, it might not have the latest operating system patches, exposing the network to risk from malware, virus propagation, and denial-of-service attacksAny user who connects with a device could potentially access data and applications without detectionThe device might be infected with malicious software. The DoD currently uses a variety of access-control methods, including port-based security, to control device access. But this requires cross-checking the device’s MAC address against a manually created list of authorized addresses. And port security doesn’t scale and requires manual configuration. Plus MAC addresses can be spoofed.Prevention of unauthorized and/or compromised endpoints from accessing the networkTo help make sure devices connect only when and where they are authorized to, your C2C solutions should be able to:
Authenticate the endpoint and determine if a device complies with the security posture (security profile should include latest operating system patches and antivirus software)Automate remediation (be able to quarantine non-compliant devices and remediate quickly with minimal user effort; saving time and improving productivity)Create custom profiles for proprietary systems and devices unique to defense (such as aircraft maintenance systems).Control the user’s access to resources, based on policy and authorizationNetwork awareness by authenticating the user and device then connecting the appropriate VLAN or VRF (guest VLAN = Internet access only while all other VLANs access all or subsets of DoD resources)Access control lists (ACLs) for wired, wireless, and VPN connections (grants access based on user’s specific identity and permissions, after authentication)Scalable group tags (SGTs) that allow administrators to centrally control access to resources (SGT allows network devices to enforce policy and permit/deny traffic accordingly).Context: know the “who, what, where, and when” of your network connectionsFlexible reporting options with the ability to sort devices by manufacturer, operating system version, antivirus software version, and moreContext of device connections that document each connection attempt, including user identity, device, location, time of day, and type of network connection (wired, wireless, or VPN) · Built-in visibility, eliminating the need to purchase a separate application, lowering costs and reducing deployment issues.Reduction in operating cost by using automationAutomated network admission control and port securityAutomated device profilingAutomated application of security patches when a device connectsDevice consolidation (fewer devices mean lower space, power, cooling, and management costs so seek ways to combine your user and device authentication, guest access support, mobile device management (MDM), and bring-your-own-device (BYOD) integration)Simplified deployment and operation (remember, automation lowers costs, reduces errors, and frees your high-value team members to focus on more critical work).NHDoD’s highly trained and certified trainers are your secret to success in meeting all your C2C directives and the Zero Trust Executive Order. Implementing C2C is a massive, sprawling initiative with many moving parts. When you’re ready, these classes can prepare the cyber workforce in achieving the necessary skills to guide you through the process. The Technology Training Partner to the Federal Government with more than 25 years of service to the federal government. NHDoD is the proven, premier partner you need for procuring mission-critical IT solutions and improving our country’s defense workforce. We are here to ensure your organization is supported with a modern, optimized C2C framework and the technology training necessary to make cybersecurity more effective and efficient across your network.
Highlighted Certification Courses:
**This certification is at no cost:
SC-900: Microsoft Security, Compliance, and Identity
NHDoD is offering this certification course at no cost. The 1-day event will be on March 21, 2022. The class will have Continuing Education Units (CEU) for completing this class. It also meets the Executive Order on Zero Trust.
This course provides foundational level knowledge on security, compliance, and identity protection concepts on Microsoft Azure and Microsoft 365 solutions required to obtain the SC-900 certification. Most courses focus on Azure or Microsoft 365, but not both. The SC-900 course covers technology within both products. Those that new to Azure and/or Microsoft 365 benefit from learning the security and compliance capabilities available to protect data and resources. After completing this course learners will understand Azure security concepts related to networking, firewalls, application security, protection of user and device identities.
Cisco: Network
Cisco® Implementing and Administering Cisco® Solutions v1.0 (CCNA)Cisco® Implementing and Operating Cisco® Enterprise Network Core Technologies v1.2 (ENCOR)Cisco® Implementing and Configuring Cisco® Identity Services Engine v3.0 (SISE)CompTIA: Infrastructure Foundation
CompTIA Network+ CertificationCompTIA Security+ CertificationCompTIA Cloud+ CertificationCompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst Certification (CySA+)EC-Council: Security
EC-Council Certified Network Defender (CND)EC-Council Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)Microsoft: Security & Cloud
SC-900 **AZ-900AZ-104AZ-500AZ-220T00 Microsoft Azure IoT Developer (APL)AZ-040T00: Automating Administration with PowerShellCertNexus: Internet of Things
CertNexus Certified Internet of Things Practitioner (CIoTP)VMWare: Virtual
VMware vSphere: Install, Configure, ManageVMware Carbon Black App Control Advanced AdministratorProgramming:
Using Data Science Tools in PythonPython Programming – IntroductionPython Programming – AdvancedCertNexus Certified Cyber Secure CoderPowerShell for System Center Configuration Manager Administrators

Compare Wrike and Smartsheet

Employees have higher expectations of the tools they have access to as companies work out the best setup for their workforce. Some workers feel that their current PM tools are too rigid, tedious, distracting, or complex to use for their job. Everyone must be onboard in order to successfully adopt a project-management solution. This article compares Smartsheet vs Wrike.
Table of Contents
Adoption of Project Management Software
Wrike Approach
Smartsheet Approach
Are you ready to decide on Wrike or Smartsheet?
Adoption of Project Management Software
Senior management must create a strategy and a process to help everyone use the new software tool. The company will choose the best solution by incorporating feedback from end users, IT, as well as other relevant departments. The tool chosen should address current and future business requirements such as budget, scalability and ease of use, training and support, administration, security, and support.
Learn more: Types and Risks in Project Management
Companies may choose to adopt solutions that are not long-term or that are not suitable for their specific use cases if they don’t have a clear strategy. Organizations should look for features that will allow employees to do their best work, with customization, automation, and flexibility. A PM tool should allow teams to focus more on the work that matters without exposing corporate data.
This Smartsheet vs. Wike comparison will highlight important features that facilitate team adoption.
Return to the top
Wrike Approach
Wrike, a cloud-based project management tool, provides teams with a secure and collaborative platform. It provides solid project management tools such as interactive Gantt charts and flexible Kanban boards. Users can also share calendars to keep track and share milestones, tasks, due dates, and other information. The software is not only useful for project teams but also IT, marketing, creative, as well as operations teams.
Wrike encourages collaboration and visibility to allow the entire organization, its external partners and clients to work together. Wrike gives you real-time information whether you are proofing digital artifacts or coordinating company-wide events. Interactive dashboards display overviews and details. Project portfolio management helps to prioritize investments and accelerate rollouts. Other features include custom request forms and pre-built templates. Time tracking is also included.

Wrike is flexible and easy to use. To ensure that Wrike fits the work of their teams, they can customize their views, workflows, dashboards, and dashboards. Gantt charts, critical path, workload views, and Gantt charts allow users to be proactive and prevent problems from becoming serious. Teams can create their own stages and statuses so they can track progress and notify stakeholders without being interrupted. It offers customizable reports and advanced analytics, as well as custom request forms and layout visualizations that can be customized to simplify and standardize input.
Automation and Integration
Wrike automation features enable teams to set the right priorities, optimize performance, and make sure everyone is on the same page. The Wrike workload view automatically displays how much work each team member has so that project managers can avoid burnout. Reports quickly show the allocation of resources and any adjustments that are needed. Drag-and-drop scheduling allows for flexible resource planning. Integration and automation add-ons allow teams to create integrations that work exactly as they need, connect to any combination or apps, and customize them using unique automations. You can choose from over 400 connectors and also use APIs.
Continue reading: Is Agency Automation the Future of Agency Automation?
Wrike offers the security companies need to trust and succeed.

Compare Wrike and OpenProject

A business’s success depends on maintaining good customer relationships, a good reputation, meeting customer needs, and achieving its goals. This article compares Wrike and OpenProject, two innovative project management softwares that allow teams to deliver projects for customers.
Table of Contents
Project Management Challenges
Wrike Approach
OpenProject Approach
Are you ready to decide on OpenProject vs. Wrike?
Project Management Challenges
Businesses must be able meet the needs of their customers in order to maintain good relationships with customers and preserve their good name. Through company-led projects, customers can access products and services. Project management is essential for the timely and efficient delivery of these products and/or services. The team must be able to overcome any challenges that may arise. These can have an impact on the project’s cost, delivery, and quality. All of these factors affect the ability to deliver the product or service that meets the client’s requirements.
Continue reading: What is a Project Management System?
Scope creep, unclear goals and success criteria, unrealistic deadlines, budget issues, and scope creep are all challenges to project management. Poor communication, insufficient engagement from stakeholders, and a lack of accountability can also affect projects. In today’s business environment, teams must have adequate risk management and contingency planning for a variety scenarios. Teams can create comprehensive plans, communicate and collaborate effectively, track performance, and monitor progress with the right project management software. This will allow them to deliver successful projects.
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Wrike Approach
Wrike is a flexible project management software that allows teams to collaborate on all types of projects. It is a flexible tool that allows users to modify and adjust views, workflows, reports, and other features, making it more useful and relevant. It comes with ready-to-use templates that can be used to create a variety of workflows. The software also has automations that can be created using a drag-and drop builder. There are also integrations that allow teams to get up and running quickly. It also offers custom dashboards that can display a variety of visualizations, shared team calendars for communicating due dates, time tracking to simplify invoices, visual proofing to keep files and comments together, and shared team calendars.

Gantt Charts
Wrike’s interactive Gantt chart gives teams a visual way of tracking progress, dependencies, plans, and milestones. Its integrated critical path analysis feature allows users to spot bottlenecks, and allows for adjustments or contingencies. Gantt chart software is easy to use and can display multiple projects. It also allows for better control through snapshots and baselining. Users can modify tasks, dates, and deadlines as they go. They can share their project plan via a link or import tasks from a Microsoft Project File with all durations and dependencies.
Resource Management
Wrike’s resource management features enable project leaders to effectively manage their teams so that they can deliver their best work. The software gives users visibility to plan and assign workloads, and helps to avoid employee burnout. It displays how many tasks each team member has to do and allows the PM easy to reassign or reprioritize tasks. The PM can use built-in time tracking, timesheets and analytics to measure the time spent on tasks and provide insight to help him make adjustments.
Continue reading: Time Management and Resource Allocation in Project Management
Portfolio Management
Enterprises can easily link their plans and strategies to their projects from a single platform. Wrike’s project portfolio management gives users insight into how to make their company more agile and efficient. Management can use custom user request forms to capture their requirements and create the right plans. All templates and automation

Compare ClickUp vs Wrike

When teams attempted to organize their project data, priorities, and other information, they could easily meet face-to-face to get the job done. Many employees who work in hybrid offices today carry heavy digital loads and want a central way to see all the work across the company. We compare the collaborative management features of two project management softwares in this Wrike and ClickUp article.
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Collaborative Work Management Tools
Wrike Approach
ClickUp Approach
Are you ready to decide on ClickUp vs. Wrike?
Collaborative Work Management Tools
Since long, companies have used a variety digital tools to improve efficiency, productivity, and embrace modernization. Many organizations have had to undergo rapid digital transformation due to recent events. Remote teams today have to spend more time searching for files, content, or other data across multiple applications than they do their daily work. It can be more difficult to initiate conversations and ensure that all parties are included in discussions. This can lead to unclear goals, unassigned duties, missed deadlines and low motivation.
These problems can be solved by collaborative work management (CWM), tools that allow teams to quickly find resources, communicate in real-time, and align tasks with company objectives. CWM software supports project and process management at all levels, including the individual, team, and corporate. Employees can invite clients, colleagues, and partners to discuss and collaborate on digital artifacts. Teams have easy access to data which improves transparency and performance. Project managers can accurately identify workload, capacity, assign activities and track progress as required.
Also read: How Project Teams can Improve Collaboration with Vendors
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Wrike Approach
Wrike is a flexible project management software that allows teams to collaborate securely and manage cross-functional work. It is used by project teams, marketing teams and professional services to break down information silos. The software is used by teams to manage remote and hybrid teams, clients, agile project management, enterprise portfolio management, and client management.
Wrike allows customization of workflows and automation. Processes can be started and people receive alerts without needing to intervene manually. Pre-built workflow templates speed up project initiation. Shareable Kanban boards facilitate visible work tracking. You can also collaborate with Wrike by sharing team calendars, digital asset tracking, and customizable request forms. Wrike has resource management to balance workloads and time tracking to simplify invoicing. It also offers project portfolio management to maximize results.

Scheduling and Project Planning
Wrike Gantt charts give teams an interactive and highly visual way to create project schedules using a drag-and drop builder. They can create dependencies and use critical paths analysis to determine the most successful path, while also keeping an eye out for project blockers. Users can create a project plan, detail their tasks, link their dependencies, track progress and visualize each step. The team is notified when any changes are made to the timeline. With a link, project leaders can share tasks with their team members. The software integrates seamlessly with many tools and applications, so data import takes just seconds.
Collaborative Proofing
Wrike offers an online proofing tool that makes it easy to collaborate on digital items. It includes integrated feedback and a detailed record for changes. Clients can quickly sign off work from creative teams. All files, feedback, approvals, and feedback are kept in one place by this collaboration software. It allows users to highlight specific locations for suggestions. The history of requests, original versions and updated versions can be compared quickly. It allows teams to invite externala

Compare Wrike and Airtable

Employees now have multiple tools to accomplish their work, but digital adoption has also created new problems. Users store information in multiple places and communicate through many channels using different tools. Software offers many options, but it can also lead to undue complexity, such as a proliferation of tools and digitized bad processes. This can also result in low visibility, low visibility, and increased exposure to corporate data. We will be discussing two possible solutions to these new remote work problems in this Wrike article vs. Airtable article.
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Remote Work Technology
Wrike Approach
Airtable Approach
Are you ready to decide on Airtable vs. Wrike?
Remote Work Technology
Companies quickly adopted a variety communication tools such as chats and video conference to keep employees connected and online when the business world switched to work-from-home. While this allowed operations to continue as usual, managers noticed that these non-integrated solutions caused poor reporting, decentralized collaboration, communication breakdowns and missing files.
Also read: What is the Productivity Puzzle? And Why Does it Matter?
Businesses need the right technology and tools to enable synchronous communication as well as asynchronous collaboration in order to make working remotely possible. Remote work technology will allow project managers to address new challenges. This will make it easier for employees and external partners to collaborate.
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Wrike Approach
Wrike is a cloud-based project management and collaboration software. It offers users a digital workspace that allows them to create, organize, store, and share projects as well as details and files. This solution allows for flexible views and customizable workflows that inform stakeholders about progress. Interactive Gantt charts, drag and drop Kanban boards, shared team calendars and project portfolio management are just a few of the features that this solution offers. This allows for a complete view of projects, teams and performance.
Wrike also offers project templates to speed up the initiation process, custom request forms that simplify intake, time tracking to reduce invoicing, and analytics to provide real-time insight. It offers robust, enterprise-grade security, automated approval processes, integrations and apps to address the challenges faced by remote workers.

Automated proofing
Wrike’s automated visual proofing eliminates the need to communicate with remote teams via multiple tools. The project can be self-documented by having all feedback, digital assets, files and approvals centralized together. All parties can quickly return to one place and identify the changes that are needed to move work forward. All versions and requests can be safely saved. Users can also share their feedback directly into the project. It automates the review process by assigning tasks and notifying approvalrs. It allows users to invite other collaborators and provides templates for integration with other digital creation and publishing software.
Automation and Integration
When selecting new remote work technology, integration is a top priority for companies that have made significant investments in digital tools. Wrike Integrate, an integration and automation plugin, allows users to connect to more than 400 cloud and on-premise applications. This allows them to add custom automation into their workflows. Users can connect to Wrike Integrate using APIs. They can transfer and sync data or automate workflows with triggers that cause actions automatically to occur. Automated and integrated workflows reduce information silos and errors in manual workflows.
Also read: Expanding Automation and Artificial Intelligence

Compare Smartsheet vs

Project management in today’s complex business environment is doubly difficult when team members are spread across multiple locations. Project managers may be too busy dealing with clients and stakeholders to notice inefficiencies, missed opportunities, lack of coordination, low employee morale, or inefficiencies in processes. These issues can quickly become major obstacles that hinder projects and negatively impact businesses. This Smartsheet vs. comparison reveals the similarities and differences between these two project management softwares for distributed teams.
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Distributed Teams: Challenges
Smartsheet Approach
Are you ready to decide on Smartsheet vs.
Challenges for Distributed Teams
To effectively manage distributed project teams, you must first understand the challenges they face in their day to day work. Some people point out past surveys as evidence of the problems of remote work, such as lack of trust, in-person interaction, distractions, and productivity issues. These surveys also reveal that remote work is a good fit for most remote workers.
Also read: How to succeed in remote project management
While hybrid models are becoming more popular, there are still issues. Distributed workers face a number of challenges. These include poor communication, low collaboration, poor visibility due to isolation, poor time management, and difficulty in collaboration. This can lead to lower productivity. All these issues can be managed with the right project management software, as well as the features we discuss in this vs. Smartsheet.
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Smartsheet Approach
Smartsheet is an online project management software and work collaboration software. It has a familiar spreadsheet-like interface, and a central workspace that allows for collaboration, workflows, content, projects, and collaboration. It allows organizations to create dynamic worksheets, automate workflows and increase visibility among distributed teams. It allows users to streamline their processes, create plans and track resources, communicate quickly, and concentrate on their work without being distracted by lengthy email threads or unnecessary meetings.
Smartsheet provides advanced PM features such as dashboards, activity logs and reports, Gantt charts and critical paths, card view grid view calendar view, forms, forms, and mobile app. It also offers API, data connectors and premium add-ons that allow you to extend and grow your business solutions.

Smartsheet allows distributed teams to have conversations to solve communication problems. It organizes work and puts it in context. It also refers to specific work items which can improve visibility and decision-making. You can leave comments on a row or the entire sheet. These comments will then be displayed in the right panel. You can view conversations from different views, such as grid, card Gantt, calendar and report. This ensures a consistent user experience. Software stores all conversations and allows users to reply directly from their email.
Smartsheet automation lets users create automated workflows that save time. Distributed project teams can automate repetitive tasks to allow them to concentrate on more important work and the software will handle the simpler tasks. They can create processes that allow for any change to the worksheet to trigger an automatic action, such as sending alerts or requesting approvals. The intuitive visual editor allows users to combine conditional paths with multiple actions. This can be done on the desktop, mobile app, and integrated messaging apps such as Slack and Microsoft.