MCP Insights

If You Do Nothing Else, Implement Multifactor Authentication to Head Off Cyberattacks

Posted on May 28, 2020 by Mike Beagles

MCP’s NetInform solution leverages a variety of tools that enable our subject-matter experts to assess our clients’ communications network security postures. That assessment includes looking for vulnerabilities that could allow a bad actor to gain access to the network and then navigate through it, seeking opportunities to perform cyberattacks. Typically, a lot of vulnerabilities exist, and they’re not always easy to see. It can be something as simple as a network port being left open by a service technician after the work is done, or a former employee’s account is still active long after they left. This is problematic because numerous, easy-to-use scanning programs are readily available to hackers that enable them to probe an organization’s network to discover every open port, i.e., breach point, and attempt access.

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How to Keep GIS Institutional Knowledge From Walking Out the Door

Posted on May 19, 2020 by Robert Horne

Every once in a while, the geographic information system (GIS) professional working for one of our clients retires, which is great for the pro—and equally bad for the client.

GIS has been important in the public safety community for a couple of decades now. The data generated by such systems is leveraged by computer-aided dispatch (CAD) system mapping applications to pinpoint the location of 911 callers on telecommunicator screen displays. In the Next Generation 911 (NG911) environment, to which many emergency communications centers (ECCs) are migrating, GIS-generated geospatial data will replace the legacy automatic location identification (ALI) and master street address guide (MSAG) databases to locate emergency callers. The result will be fewer misdirected 911 calls and timelier dispatching of the appropriate emergency response. When lives are on the line and every second counts, this is a good thing.

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Podcast Series Tackles COVID-19-Generated Telecommunicator Stress

Posted on May 12, 2020 by Glenn Bischoff

Without question, the role of telecommunicator in an emergency communications center (ECC) is one of the most stressful jobs on the planet. Having to deal with distraught, even hysterical, callers who are having the worst day of their lives, and then making split-second decisions regarding the appropriate emergency response to dispatch—all while maintaining one’s composure—is no easy task. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic is adding to the stress considerably.

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One Way To Keep Public Safety Technology Procurements from Derailing

Posted on May 5, 2020 by Glenn McLemee

Emergency communications centers need a lot of gear. They need wireless communications systems to communicate with first responders in the field. They need call-handling systems to process 911 calls. They need computer-aided dispatch systems, as well as mapping and automatic vehicle location applications, to dispatch the appropriate emergency response. And those are just the backbone systems. The ECC technology ecosystem that enables effective emergency response is quite expansive.

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Cybersecurity Threat Advisory: Hackers Still Are Exploiting COVID-19

Posted on April 28, 2020 by Mike Beagles

As part of our effort to inform our clients about potential and serious cybersecurity issues, MCP provides advisories about vulnerabilities and exploits that could threaten the operations of their mission-critical communications networks. Sign up to receive these advisories in your inbox as soon as they are released.

This week, there is a new critical alert that requires the mission-critical community’s immediate attention.

Advisory Summary

Hacking groups still are exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to perform cyberattacks. The United States’ Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the United Kingdom’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) issued a joint alert regarding the threats. To combat these threats, their recommendations are focused on user training and good cyber hygiene. A comprehensive list of recommendations to mitigate the risk can be found on the CISA website.

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