MCP Insights

Be Wary of Using Commercial Broadband Networks for Public Safety Voice

Posted on January 8, 2021 by Scott Neal

More than ever, broadband communications networks are essential to the public safety and justice communities. Such networks easily transmit highly bandwidth-intensive files, e.g., video and building floor plans, that would choke a narrowband network. Such files enhance situational awareness for incident commanders and other officials—as well as emergency responders and jail/prison officers—by orders of magnitude, which in turn helps them do their jobs better.

But there’s a flip side to broadband communications networks of which the public safety community needs to take seriously. Such networks typically are owned and operated by commercial entities, and because of this public safety agencies that contract for broadband services typically do not receive the performance guarantees and—even more importantly—the visibility into these networks that they’re used to receiving from the networks that they own and operate, for example, their land mobile radio (LMR) systems.

Consequently, public safety agencies should proceed carefully when they consider whether to contract with any commercial entity for broadband services.

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2020—Year in Review

Posted on December 23, 2020 by Glenn Bischoff

The year 2020 was fraught with challenges, most notably those generated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Public safety and justice agencies from coast to coast were forced to implement, virtually overnight, new operational strategies that became necessary because employees were unable to work in their brick-and-mortar facilities, either due to illness or various shelter-in-place orders. In some cases, agencies had to rapidly execute protective measures for those employees who could arrive at work, driven by social-distancing mandates.

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Cybersecurity Threat Advisory: SolarWinds Orion Backdoor

Posted on December 15, 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 critical communications networks. Sign up to receive these advisories in your inbox as soon as they are released.

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Cybersecurity Threat Advisory: Egregor Ransomware

Posted on December 10, 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 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 Overview

The ransomware-as-a-service variant “Egregor” is spiking across the cybersecurity and information technology (IT) landscape after the shutdown of the notorious Maze ransomware campaign. Some major organizations have fallen victim to the malware, including Kmart, Cencosud (a retail giant in South America), Randstad NV (the world’s largest staffing company and owner of Monster.com), and Translink (Vancouver’s bus and rail transportation system).

The ransomware has been seen hijacking printers and repeatedly printing the ransom note. In the case of retail organizations, the ransom note has been printing on consumers’ receipts at checkout. Mission Critical Partners recommends deploying advanced endpoint protection to block ransomware pre-execution.

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Improved Criminal-Justice Outcomes Driven by Better-Integrated Data Will Rebuild Citizen Trust

Posted on December 4, 2020 by Kevin Murray

An incredible amount of data exists in the world, and it’s going to increase by orders of magnitude. In fact, some experts believe that the amount of data available worldwide will increase by 300 percent by 2025—a short five years from now. That’s truly mind-boggling.

On a high level, more and better data leads to enhanced decision-making and improved outcomes, regardless of one’s business. But at ground level, for data to be useful it needs to be “actionable,” because a tsunami of raw information would be unmanageable at best, overwhelming at worst. This is especially true in the public-safety and criminal-justice environments, where lives are on the line and every second matters. There’s simply no time, in the moment, to sift through a big pile of data and try to make sense of it.

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