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The latest news and information from NCSI

Bryan Hadzik, CTO of Network Consulting Services, Inc gives us his take on Spectre and Meltdown in this 6-minute explainer video and then discusses your options on how to combat and fix using Ivanti software:

Hi everyone Brian Hadzik, CTO with NCSI
here to talk about meltdown and Spectre

you’ve probably heard about this in the
news, what are meltdown inspector well in the
first week of January 2018 some

researchers found some hardware flaws in
Intel processors now what’s unique about

them is this is not a software problem
there’s a hardware problem that’s deep

inside the silicon and so there’s gonna
be a lot more wide-ranging it affects

lots of different operating systems lots
of different kinds of chips and really

affects everyone and so we need to dig
into what we need to do to resolve this

particular problem so what what is
meltdown was inspector what do they mean

well meltdown they named it that because
actually melts the security boundaries

between applications so that one
application can potentially steal memory

from another and there’s normally a
hardware component to that to keep that

protected Spectre is based on something
called speculative execution and it’s

gonna be a little bit harder to fix over
the long term but it’s also more

difficult to to exploit so the meltdown
is a good example that could be a

JavaScript application could steal
password information from your web

browser that’s how how sensitive this
particular vulnerability is and how

critical it is to find a fix for it the
speculative execution like I described

is going to be be a lot harder to exploit than
the meltdown there are no known exploits

out today that are actually in the wild
people using this to break into systems

there are some sample code of people
demonstrating how to use it but there’s

no known wide-ranging exploits these
gonna be complex to fix over time and so

we need to apply lots different patches
some of the kernel some to web browsers

etc so as with everything security in
layers when it comes to correcting these

particular problems web browsers are
kind of the first Avenue and things that

we can protect because of that
JavaScript style vulnerability I

described earlier they should be one of
the first things we need to look into

fixing for example Firefox and our 57.0
for release has applied a patch to help

correct some of the issues
has a fix coming out in January on the

26th but you can actually go turn
something on called psych isolation in

the meantime to help give you some
levels of protection Internet Explorer

and edge are patched with some Microsoft
patches that are that are out right now

there’s an operating system patching you
need to worry about as well so be it for

0Mac OS or for Windows or iOS etc let’s
talk about the Microsoft side first so

Microsoft operating systems that that’s
Windows 7 Windows 8 Windows 8 1 Windows

10 you know all of the major operating
systems servers 2012 2012 r2 2016 etc

they need to have a patch applied to
them and Microsoft released them at the

first part of the year now the problem
is that there are a kernel level

patch what Microsoft discovered in
testing these patches is certain

antivirus manufacturers we’re making
calls against the kernel in an

improper way and so what would happen is
it would actually start blue screening

the machines so Microsoft did was in
before this patch gets applied it

actually checks a registry key that the
AV manufacturer needs to put in place

first to make sure that they understand
the the changes that need to be made for

these kernel calls what happens if you
go to apply that patch and that registry

key is missing it will simply not apply
the patch at all so if you keep applying

it and it keeps saying it’s vulnerable
and you can’t seem to get the patch

check that antivirus registry key for
example with Avanti Products Avanti uses

the Kaspersky antivirus engine as long
as the database definitions are December

28th 2017 or later it actually puts
those registry key in place if you use a

third-party antivirus please go check
with that antivirus vendor on if you

need to apply a patch or a definition to
make sure that that’s there first before

we can apply this kernel patch on
Macintosh if you’re on Mac OS 10 dot

13.2 or later you’re protected on mobile
devices iOS 11.2 and is protected and on

Android the January 2018 security patch
applies a patch to resolve this

particular vulnerability so that’s kind
of the background on it let’s talk about

how avanti products can actually help
you and protect against this particular

vulnerability here in my console I have
the Avanti endpoint manager product

and this is the patch management
component that I’m going to show you

here under vulnerabilities I’ve created
a custom group here for my meltdown

inspector just go and make sure your
patches are getting downloaded and

they’ll show up here in the detected
vulnerabilities and then like I said I

just did for grouping matches and put
them here under meltdown inspector so I

can keep track of them you can see on
the publish date over here on the side

most of them come out came out in the
January time frame you can see we have

ones like for the Firefox up here at the
top Firefox 5704 here are the various

operating system patches you can see
that there’s a standalone security only

update in addition to some monthly
roll-ups that were that include this

particular patch now for those of you
that are familiar with patch management

you know it’s gonna be pretty easy you
can come in here and you can choose a

repair you can look at the affected
computers on who actually needs this

particular patch and then hopefully the
end result is you’re gonna go in here to

auto fix and turn on auto fix and this
gets patched across your organization so

keep keep tabs on this there’s gonna be
more patches that would be added over

time as other you know for example
Chrome comes out with new patches or

does any other operating systems or so
forth that need to be have patches

applied to them thanks for watching
today again my name is Bryan Hadzik

with NCSI I appreciate you watching
today if you have any questions my

contact information is going to be down
below please reach out be more than

happy to help you out with it
thanks for coming


Check out our latest Palo Alto Networks Training where you can gain visibility into remote clients by using HIP profiles in Security policies.

Ensure that your remote devices are in compliance with corporate security requirements in order to receive the configuration profiles that enable access to your corporate resources.


We’ve completed another monthly training webcast and have uploaded it to YouTube.  Enjoy this one on the CIS Critical Security Controls and how Ivanti can help you check off controls 1-5.


Position Summary: The Service Management Consultant implements all aspects of customer’s ITSM solutions per a statement of work. Perform other pre and post sales activities and assist in process design workshops. Consults with NCSi customers in order to help them deliver high quality of services and maintain system availability and adherence to best practices.


  • Post Sales implementation of Service Management solutions at customer sites based on previously agreed upon requirements and statements of work
  • Day to day administration of Service Management solution for Managed Service customers.
  • Support customers with problems that occur post implementation.
  • Maintain expertise in production releases NCSi’s portfolio of solutions
  • Maintain knowledge of best practices and latest developments related to tools and techniques for effective Service Management
  • May perform other job duties as directed by Employee’s Leaders

Required Skills and Experience:

  • Excellent interpersonal and communications skills
  • Excellent time management, decision making, prioritization, documentation and organization skills
  • Strong ITIL Knowledge
  • Knowledge and previous experience of SQL Server databases.
  • Advanced analytical skills
  • Analytical skills for problem identification

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Previous experience of LANDesk Service Desk, Ivanti Service Manager, Heat Service Manager or ServiceNow
  • Previous experience of a comparable Service Desk system
  • Knowledge and previous experience of Crystal Reports or SQL Reporting Services
  • Project Management experience
  • Business process experience

Travel: Generally around 25% travel with peak months at greater than 75% with a majority of it spent on customer sites.
Send resumes and inquiries to Brian Hoskins: – mobile 801-726-6002

Palo Alto Networks, Digital Defense, Aruba Networks, and Veeam form the final quartet of vendor solutions we examine in our coverage of our CIS Security Controls toolkit. Leveraged to reduce your organization’s risk of cyberattack by up to 94%, these four security partners check off seven of the 20 Center for Internet Security (CIS) Critical Security Controls.


Center for Internet Security (CIS) Critical Security Controls V6.1

  • #4 Continuous Vulnerability Assessment and Remediation – Digital Defense
  • #8 Malware Defenses – Palo Alto Networks
  • #9 Limitation and Control of Network Ports, Protocols, & Services – Palo Alto Networks
  • #10 Data Recovery Capability – Veeam
  • #12 Boundary Defense – Palo Alto Networks
  • #15 Wireless Access Control – Aruba Networks
  • #20 Penetration Tests and Red Team Exercises – Digital Defense


Digital Defense
“Shrink the attack surface™,” is Digital Defense’s trademark slogan, which accurately sums up their approach to cyber security. This ability to manage vulnerability is why NCSi chooses the Digital Defense security suite as a strategic tool for daily customer protection. The technologies used by Digital Defense enables us to scan, analyze, score, automate, test, and establish compliance in all areas of frontline security. We also work with Digital Defense to educate our clients about the dangers of risky digital behavior. This knowledge is crucial to deterring potential human-weakness based threats. We all know we make mistakes, often unknowingly. Education is one sure key to a secure network.


Palo Alto Networks
While a cyberattack may indeed come, Palo Alto Networks security suite prevents the attack from being successful. Cyberattacks are becoming more sophisticated, more automated, and cheaper to launch. Fundamental trust in the network is eroding, but you still need trust in your system to maintain your daily business. NCSi uses Palo Alto Networks’ next-generation security platform to reduce the success rate of an almost inevitable cyberattack to as close to zero as possible. A manageable cyberattack can have limited or no damages. And that is, after all, the end goal of a cyber security plan.


Veeam was named a 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader for Data Center Backup and Recovery. This is not the first time Veeam has been honored by the security industry, and this is not the first year NCSi has been a proud partner with Veeam. The solution most relevant to the current CIS Security Control mentioned here is their Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service (DRaaS).  Without disaster recovery, a successful attack — despite all your preparations — could mean the demise of your business. An efficient and affordable recovery plan, however, can get your operations back online in fewer than 15 minutes. Your customers won’t even know you’ve had a mishap. That’s quite a significant difference. It pays to be ready in case of disaster.


Aruba Networks
Aruba networks focuses on mobile first, and it’s not just about connectivity. Reliability, integration, sharing real-time contextual information about the network state with business applications and providing programmability of your infrastructure. Whew! Add to this the inclusion of the IoT, and you have a cutting-edge security solution for wired, wi-fi, wide area and cloud-based networks. The aruba network ecosystem provides a better user experience, too, with many developer options. [4] This is why NCSi chooses aruba networks for wireless access control.


This security quartet rounds out the toolkit that NCSi uses to fulfill the promise set out by the CIS Critical Security Controls. We have looked at all 20 of the controls. The first five offer the greatest bang for your buck. Implementing the first five reduces your risk of cyberattack by 85%. But the job isn’t complete with just the first five. By finishing what you started, and working with us to implement all 20 of the CIS security controls, you reduce your cyberattack by 94%. That’s a hefty increase in your comfort level, not to mention a significant increase in protection for your business investment. Add to this the extra miles that NCSi goes to address your particular organization’s specific needs, your exposure to attack begins to close in on zero. That’s our goal.


We hope that this series of articles has helped you see the need for a long-term security strategy. Committing your organization to implementing the international CIS Critical Security Controls is a wise plan. Our job is to help you do this in the most effective, efficient, and affordable way possible.


Contact us today for a free evaluation of your security posture.



For Release:  September 11, 2017

Bountiful, Utah— September 11, 2017 — Network Consulting Services, Inc. (NCSi) today announced Steven Taylor will be joining NCSi in a newly created position, as Service and Delivery Manager, reporting to Brian Hoskins, Director of Services.  Steven will have oversight of the strategic direction, expansion and operation of the ServiceNow line of business.


“I am thrilled that Steven is now part of the team,” said Brian Hoskins.  “He shares our values on innovation and the customer experience, and he will have a positive impact on our ServiceNow practice.”


Mr. Taylor joins Network Consulting Services, Inc. with more than 10 years of IT Service Management and Business Process Automation experience.  He has worked previously as a Solutions Architect for Cask, with a focus on designing and delivering Enterprise Service Management Solutions across all internal business units.  Prior to joining Cask, Steven was the Senior Manager of Platform Software Development responsible for managing the cloud solution teams at Academy Mortgage.  Steven has been working on ServiceNow since the Aspen release and has experience in nearly every module the platform has to offer.  He also helped found the Utah ServiceNow User Group (SNUG), where he served as Group Leader for five years. Steven is a pioneer in building applications for the enterprise, customizing projects for specific departmental needs including Facilities and Project Management.


Network Consulting Services, Inc. offers IT solutions to mid and large-size enterprises in both the public and private sector with offerings including; Security, Data Storage, Virtualization, Networking, Asset and Service Management.  NCSI, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, is a national partner of ServiceNow and other IT partners, with certified engineers and support professionals located throughout the country.


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For more information, please contact:

John Bartz, Marketing Director
Tel:  801-677-2496