Minimizing Ransomware Risk

Ransomware is dominating the headlines so far in 2016. The number and severity of ransomware attacks has been increasing. Recent ransomware attacks against school districts, healthcare providers, state and local governments, and enterprises illustrate that criminals have shifted away from targeting just consumers, and instead are focusing on companies who will pay higher ransoms.

Consider the following recent high-profile attack, and you’ll start to get an idea of how dangerous and nimble ransomware can be.

Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital – Using phishing to trick an unsuspecting employee, attackers seized the hospital’s entire IT system, stalled critical healthcare related communications and extorted $17,000 in ransom.

Companies and individuals who have been paying the ransoms have enabled the criminals that create these malicious programs, to ramp up development and make the attacks more sophisticated. Apple OS X – Typically thought of as less vulnerable to viruses and malware, still ransomware hackers are now successfully targeting OS X systems through sophisticated phishing emails that use malware to encrypt the data and render it inaccessible until a ransom is paid.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) reports seeing a dramatic increase of these type of cyber-attacks paired with increasingly higher ransom requests. If the first quarter of this year is any indicator, we’ll see the number of ransomware incidents surpass last year’s record, which totaled 2,453 reported incidents and approximately $24.1 million in ransom paid by victims.

So how do I help Minimize Risk?

  • Monitored Backups–The most common advice to recover from an attack by ransomware relies largely on whether a good backup policy is employed for your data and entire system backups. Store backups in an offline environment because many ransomware variants will try to encrypt data on connected network shares and removable drives. If possible, use a hybrid backup solution that keeps copies of your data locally and in the cloud. This way if one of your backups is compromised you will have a greater chance of success in restoring your data.


  • Layered Security–Having a layered approach to security should be taken seriously for repelling ransomware. The best way to protect against a virus is to have defenses to ensure you never receive any viruses in the first place. Deploy a layered approach utilizing technologies such as anti-virus, web filtering and firewalls. Apply access controls, including file, directory, and network share permissions to limit the exposure of non-administrator users to sensitive data.


  • Stay Updated–Frequently update anti-virus and anti-malware with the latest signatures and perform regular scans. Create an application whitelist, allowing only specific programs to run on a computer.


  • Request Support–If you have questions, do not be afraid to call your IT department or vendor. They will be able to help you try to minimize the damage and get started on data recovery.

Kyvon Malware Risk

Spam Titan User Guide

Creating Your Spam Titan Account:

Server Link: http://spam1.kyvon.com

The first day that Spam Titan is set up, you will receive your first Quarantine email which will allow you to set up your account.  This email will contain everything that has been blocked due to it being considered Spam, Banned Attachment, or Blacklisted.

At the bottom of this email you will see:

Click on the link that says “click here”

By clicking that link, you’ ll be taken to a webpage that looks like this:

Once here, and it’s your first time using this page, click on Forget your Password?

You’re then taken to a page that looks like this:

Enter your email address and click send.  When the new email arrives, it will be from Email@yourdomain.com

On the password assistance screen, click the back button, then put in your email address and new password generated from the list.

When you log in, it will look like this:

There are three tabs across the top left navigation:  Settings, Filter Rules, and Quarantine.


You are instantly taken to the Quarantine tab.

From here you can:

Select the type of messages you would like to view from the Message Type drop down

  • Select a custom date range to view
  • Enter an individual sender when you’re searching for a particular email
  • Customize the number of messages you would like to see
  • Put them in order by spam score or date


From the settings tab, you have two options:

Change Password and Quarantine Report Settings

Change Password

Enter the password that was provided to you in the email from Spam Titan, then enter your new password and confirm it.

Quarantine report Settings

From this screen, you can:

Select the language you would like your quarantine reports

Select when you would like your quarantine reports (this is currently set to Weekday)

  • Day
  • Weekday
  • Friday
  • Month
  • Never

Select what you would like included in your quarantine report

  • All quarantined items
  • New items since last report only

Filter Rules

From the Filter Rules tab, you have two options:

User Blacklist and User Whitelist


User Blacklist

From this screen you can:

  • Blacklist an entire domain
  • Blacklist an individual sender

User Whitelist


User Whitelist

From this screen you can:

  • Whitelist an entire domain
  • Whitelist an individual sender

If you have any questions concerning Spam Titan, please contact Kyvon Customer Support at: 877-710-7993 or email us at support@kyvon.com


SMS Notification System

Kyvon has a new SMS notification system that customers can subscribe too. This system will be used to communicate to customers on high priority service related issues. To subscribe to this service text Kyvon to 99629.

Why bother virtualizing desktops at all?

Well, the primary reason why you might want to under take a desktop virtualization initiative is to centralize the management of your users’ desktops. While specifics depend on the selected model, the essential driver behind desktop virtualization in all of its forms is to enable user environments to be controlled and managed from a central point. This can simplify operational challenges such as asset management and patch management, and enables desktop policies to be more straightforwardly defined and implemented.

Appreciating Flexibility, Security and Availability

As well as improving the lot for IT managers, by breaking the bond between physical technologies and the applications that run on them, desktop virtualization can mean more flexibility for users. Depending on the selected virtualization options, users can be free to access applications and data wherever it’s most convenient to them, all the while taking their own configuration needs into account. For example:
✓ Accessing data and/or applications from which- ever computer is available, for example including running the work environment on a home PC or Internet kiosk.
✓ Running an application with specific configuration requirements, in parallel with other applications and operating systems without conflict between them.
✓ Provisioning and allocating applications more flexibly from a central point, or allowing users to provision applications for themselves on a self service basis.
In addition, a number of security benefits exist. Better control helps ensure user environments are as up to date (and therefore secure) as possible, as well as offering the opportunity to lock down the applications people can access, through application virtualization for example. Some desktop virtualization variants also build in security features such as encryption of both data and network communications, while permitting data to be held centrally for enhanced protection.

What about availability and business continuity benefits? Virtual desktop environments have a number of failover options to enable business users to keep working should something go wrong. For example, in the case of user state virtualization, if a local desktop or even the entire office fails, users can access their work from other (appropriately configured) machines, including from home. Meanwhile, some desktop virtualization approaches offer the ability to take ‘snapshots’ of virtual machines which can be backed up and stored in case of system failure.
It’s not as straightforward as saying ‘desktop virtualization will save you money’, but it certainly gives you more options when you come to deciding how that money might be spent either by reducing operational budgets in terms of minimized downtime, or lowering management and support overheads, or potentially enabling capital expenditure to be reduced or deferred. Equally, higher levels of flexibility and availability can lead to productivity gains which are valuable, even if they can be difficult to quantify. Of course, you need to weigh such factors against the capital costs of investing in desktop virtualization in the first place.

Desktop virtualization is a means to an end to enable business users to access the applications and services they need in the most efficient manner, both for them selves and the IT department. If implemented correctly, desktop virtualization is one of those ideas in IT that represents a genuine win/win for both IT and users, because both sides stand to gain from the effective delivery of desktop services.

Desktop Virtualization For Dummies®. Published by. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. The Atrium. Southern Gate

Call Kyvon today to see how desktop virtualization can benefit your company. 877-710-7993

How to Setup FileZilla

FileZilla TutorialNew to FileZilla? Today, I have for you a tutorial to help get started using it. This fantastic FTP program might be my favorite FTP client – mainly because it is so simple to use.

Hope you enjoyed that tutorial and let me know in the comments if you would like to see more!

Facebook Fan Page Come join the fun on the Web Hosting Show Facebook Fan Page!

© Mitch Keeler 2010 | Check out my firefox help site and my tech blog too!


[STATUS] Emergency Maintenance Window – May 12th, 2010


Maintenance Window Start Date & Time: May 12th, 2010 10:00 PM CST
Maintenance Window End Date & Time: May 12th, 2010 11:00 PM CST

Impact on Customers: Intermittent Loss of Connection to mail.kyvon.com

Data Center: 710 N. Tucker

Systems: mail.kyvon.com

Scope of Work: We will be adding additional hard disk capacity and will perform routine maintenance of our core mail servers configuration.

During this window, there is a slight potential for short intermittent losses of POP3, SMTP and Imap access. Although the potential for extended downtime exists, we have carefully designed a plan for implementation of these adjustments, and will do everything to ensure that you and your customers feel little or no impact. No changes to any customer equipment will be necessary.

Duration: 1 Hours

Please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments via our online support form or via phone at 314-544-0011.

[STATUS] Emergency Maintenance Window – April 29th, 2010


Maintenance Window Start Date & Time: Apr. 29th, 2010 03:00 AM CT
Maintenance Window End Date & Time: Apr. 29th, 2010 04:30 AM CT

Impact on Customers: Intermittent Loss of Connection to Servers

Data Center: 710 N. Tucker

Systems: Core Switching, Client Portal, Cpanel-01, Hosted Exchange, Customer VMservers

Scope of Work: We will be adding additional capacity and will perform routine maintenance of our core switching configuration.

During this window, there is a slight potential for short intermittent losses of internet availability. Although the potential for extended downtime exists, we have carefully designed a plan for implementation of these adjustments, and will do everything to ensure that you and your customers feel little or no impact. No changes to any customer equipment will be necessary.

Duration: 1.5 Hours

Please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments via our online support form or via phone at (314) 544-0011.

Best Forum Practices – Podcast 205

Podcast #205 What are the best practices to get your forums up and going?  That is the topic up for discussion this week on the Web Hosting Show.  I will give you some of my favorite suggestions for free forum scripts, and also will give you the tips you need to be a success.  Now get ready, because the Web Hosting Show is on the air.

Download the Web Hosting Show, Episode 205!
Running Time: 8 minutes | File Size: 3.57 MB

I want to help you when it comes to web hosting, forums and everything in between.  One of those things in between is a midget, but there will be plenty of time for that later.  Here is a summary of the topics for this week’s broadcast.

Comparing the Best Free Forum Scripts

Forums are a great way to give a community a way to communicate with each other Online.  However, there are a lot of forum scripts out there that each have their own personality.  So which should you choose when you are starting up your own set of message boards?

The MIDGET Rule to Forum Success

Anybody can set up a forum script and host it somewhere, but what does it take to make a set of forums on the Web a big success?  Well, I might not be able to help you build the most popular set of message boards you have ever seen (because if I could, I’d be doing that – earning millions in Google AdSense ads, and not still going on and on here).  I do have a few suggestions though how you can get off the ground after having setup your forum script.

So what advice to you have to forum newbies out there?

The comments are open and ready for your suggestions.  Let me know what you think about this week’s podcast, and any other advice you might have for the web hosting world.

Add me on Twitter! Come follow my daily antics, links, tips and more @mitchkeeler on Twitter!

© Mitch Keeler 2010 | Check out my firefox help site and my tech blog too!


4 Ways to Branch Out Your Web Site

Web Site Content Ideas

With any web site or online business, it is important to change things up a ‘bit every so often.  You don’t want to be seen as becoming stale, or yesterday’s news, so bringing new web site concepts or ideas could be the perfect diversification tool you need to keep people interested in what you do and what you have to offer. There is not a web site out there today that could not be helped by adding one of these four web site service ideas.

Here are four different ways you can branch your web site out:

Blogs – Many people use blogs to extend their web sites.  To keep people coming back several times a day, weekly, monthly or more you need to deliver fresh innovative content.  A blogging script is the perfect give you the perfect delivery tool to make that happen.

Forums or Message Boards – Setting up a forum script will give the fan base that your web site has a place to discuss issues or issues related to your web site.  For example, if I added forums to WebHostingShow.com, they would be for all of you to discuss web hosting and web development issues among yourselves.

Social Sites – It might not be a hosted service, but it is certainly a little something extra you can do to bring more eyeballs in to see your web site.  Look into setting up profiles on Twitter, Facebook and the like to bring mention of your web site outside your own domain.  Use them as a way to socialize with your fan base, and keep them up to date on the latest and greatest things you have to offer.

E-Commerce Scripts – Finally, you have e-commerce scripts (also sometimes called shopping cart scripts).  By adding an e-commerce section to your web site, you will bring in a new way to bring in revenue and sell your unique products and ideas.  Make sure you start off small, and you sell something that is unique to your web site or business.

There are your four different ways you can diversify your own web site or online business to attract new eyeballs, and keep the current eyeballs you have coming back for more content, news, and services.

Get the Podcast! Listen to this article and more on Web Hosting Show, podcast #204!

Add me on Twitter! Come follow my daily antics, links, tips and more @mitchkeeler on Twitter!

© Mitch Keeler 2010 | Check out my firefox help site and my tech blog too!


Change of Scenery: New Kyvon Office

Kyvon's new home

Kyvon has moved! As of March, our office has relocated to our data center space at 710 Tucker Boulevard in downtown St. Louis. Our new location puts us in the heart of the city, just a few blocks from the Arch and the amazing Citygarden.

What does this mean to our hosting customers? Our technicians now sit only a few feet from our data center space, increasing response time to customer support requests.

*Customers should also note our change in payment address earlier this month and update their records accordingly.