Laois man heads up IT company tackling cybercrime at the Coalface of Cybersecurity

Leinster Express Reporter

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Laois man heads up Irish company tackling cyberthreat at the Coalface of Cybersecurity

Laois man and Nostra CEO, Kevin McLoughlin

As the pandemic raged through the world and more of us retreated from the office to work from home, a threat of a different nature loomed large – cyberthreat. 

A recent global report by SonicWall, a world leading IT security company, shows that the pandemic’s ‘work from home reality’ made it even easier for cybercriminals to attack endless targets as global ransomware increased by 62% since 2019.

Leading the charge against cyberthreats is Irish company Nostra, a managed IT Services Provider, founded by Laois man Kevin O’Loughlin 16 years ago with their headquarters located in Lucan, Dublin along with offices in Smithfield, Athenry and Mountmellick, Co Laois.

Rosenallis native and CEO of Nostra, Kevin O’Loughlin, said Nostra is busier than ever to help build protections and first line defences for businesses. 

“Cyberthreat is not high on everyone’s agenda, but it’s high on ours.  Our customers are predominantly business owners who are focused on ensuring their day-to-day operations perform as they should.

“IT networks, systems and cybersecurity are generally not something they have time to consider and that is where we step in. We manage all of the IT requirements so that people don’t have to worry about whether their data and systems are protected.”

“With more and more employees working from home the risk increases.  Without adequate firewalls and defences, businesses are sitting ducks for malicious cyberattacks,” Kevin went on to say.

“At best, an attack could result in downtime, but more and more organisations are reporting much more significant and damaging outcomes such as data loss, crypto jacking and ransomware.”

The stats speak for themselves. The 2021 SonicWall Global Cyber Threat Report showed that global ransomware increased by 62% since 2019.  The report also found that ‘never-before-seen’ malware variants were up by 74% and crypto-jacking is now at a three-year high.

“No business is immune to cyberthreat and cybercrime”, said Kevin.  “Cybercriminals are becoming more and more sophisticated, and their methods evolve all the time in line with technology, which is moving at an unprecedented rate. Threats that were once thought to be two or three years away are now a reality and can deliver devasting blows.  

“We are constantly on the lookout for the best new, innovative and best performing IT solutions for our customers and can offer them a suite of options which best fits their needs.”

SonicWall is one such security solution that Nostra use to protect the systems of its clients. The software has robust security features including firewalls, email security solutions, endpoint security solutions, content filtering systems and the SonicWall Capture Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) multi-engine sandbox. 

Nostra has just been awarded a ‘SonicWall Platinum Partnership’ status. This accreditation is very significant as there is only one other MSP company in Ireland which holds this status.  

“We are delighted to have been appointed as a SonicWall Platinum Partner,” said Kevin. “It is a testament to the superior technical expertise of our technicians, our ongoing training, and our high standards. Cybersecurity will continue to be a ‘hot topic’ right into 2021 as the pandemic continues and more and more people are working from home. Poor security, wormhole attacks and phishing are all unfortunate regular occurrences.  

“Nostra provides SonicWall software installation, technical support, and monitoring as part of our suite of managed IT services. By outsourcing IT a business owner no longer has to worry about systems and networks, we manage all of that for them, saving them time and money.”

Tristan Bateup, Country Manager, SonicWall said: “2020, a year in which very little went as expected, highlighted the danger of approaching cyber-resiliency as merely a best practice. 

“It is vital that organisations expand their thinking from just, “How are we going to prevent an attack?” to also include, “What will we do when (not if) we get attacked?”. As a SonicWall SecureFirst Platinum Partner, Nostra are now well positioned to support their clients in defending their organisations from today’s most evasive cyberattacks.