How Utility Providers Can Ensure Consistent IT Operations

How Utility Providers Can Ensure Consistent IT Operations

Utility providers across different sectors, usually rely on 3rd party service providers to manage and maintain their systems/ networks. Maintaining consistent operations, without any downtime, is tricky given the factors involved. Most importantly, availability of timely support still remains a huge challenge, for such environments.

In May, 2016, a Michigan municipal utility provider to shut down “its accounting system, email service for 250 employees and ‘phone lines,’ including the customer assistance line for account inquiries and the line for reporting outages, due to a ransomware attack” according to Network World. In late 2015, 100,000 citizens were left without power, after a sophisticated cyber attack on another utility provider involving a malware called BlackEnergy2 – a trojan that creates a backdoor onto a system.

Unfortunately, it’s hardly just trojans that utilities need to watch out for. The important question is – How can such environments prevent being crippled by these types of attacks?

System Restore Software Can Help

Traditionally, the beauty of re-imaging was that it could resurrect old computer configurations, which would eliminate ransomware, while also negating the existence of a backdoor trojan. The only problem, however, is that re-imaging is extremely time-consuming, especially if multiple systems are involved, which is more often than not the case with a cyber attack.

Reboot to Restore software addresses this dilemma in an elegant manner. Admins can freeze computer settings in their pristine state, and if there are any system-related issues, they can restore those settings by simply restarting the affected machines. Rather than paying a ransom to get systems back online, simply reboot the locked-down systems. Instead of painstakingly sniffing out backdoor trojans, just reboot and restore that pristine system state.

Reboot to restore gives utilities an IT edge, both in the office, and out in the field.

Ancillary Benefits

Utility providers gain an extraordinarily effective tool with Faronics’ patented ‘Reboot to Restore’ technology, but they also get a few side bonuses. As energy exploration relies more on geographic information systems (GIS) and seismic surveys to search for resource deposits beneath the Earth’s surface, field technicians are becoming increasingly dependent on data pools. When out in the field, this means that they’ll need access to rugged laptops that can withstand a beating.

But what happens when the damage isn’t physical? IT troubleshooting in the middle of a desert or tundra isn’t exactly ideal – but the ability to solve mundane problems with a simple reboot is. Technicians need only restart their computers/ mobile laptops to eliminate any performance issues, that may have resulted from configuration drift, effectively tackling any downtime.

To learn more about the security benefits of ‘Reboot to Restore’ technology, contact Faronics today

About The Author

Suzannah Hastings

Suzannah is interested in all things digital, from software security to the latest technological advances. She writes about ways in which the increasingly internet-driven landscape and windows technologies like steady state alternative that change our lives, and what we can expect in the future.

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