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Traditional IT companies have often believed security to be an add-on offering, however, with the present state of the Internet landscape and the dangers that come with it, security needs to be a top priority for IT companies. Nerds On Site recognizes that IT security is the foundational element of IT support.
In 1995 in London, Ontario, Canada, two self-proclaimed nerds (John Harbarenko and David Redekop) joined forces with the aim of solving people’s “tech-aches” by helping them turn their technology from a burden to an asset. Since then, Nerds On Site has expanded to several countries and supports thousands of small to medium sized business clients.
We asked Charlie Regan, David Redekop and John Harbarenko to tell us more about their IT solutions and the state of cybersecurity.
Tell us more about the services you offer.
Nerds On Site provides a team-based collaborative approach to IT and security services and is focused on serving small to medium sized businesses (SMEs). Our team size and our combined experience and expertise allow us to provide right-sized solutions and support. SMEs often make do with the expertise/availability of a single IT expert (whether in-house or outsourced) and may not get the right advice, or timely support. We like to say that “IT takes a team.” As traditional IT support gives way to IT Security needs, getting the right advice and having access to a wealth of knowledge and experience is more important than ever.
Help us understand more about the ‘adam:ONE’ IT security solution
adam:ONE is a security solution that we have developed over many years in order to protect clients in a way that we believe is not possible otherwise. We have combined a cloud-based management console & dashboard with hardware that lives at the client location and is responsible for processing all inbound(and, perhaps more importantly, outbound) Internet traffic. The device that lives on site is capable of assessing all aspects of the Internet traffic and will either block or allow the requests based on a number of criteria (‘rulesets’). These rulesets leverage very powerful processes (including DNS-based category lists) as well as our own patented solutions for processing internet traffic that has typically evaded firewalls.
We’ve built adam:ONE in a way that allows for as many rulesets as needed to give each device on the network a custom level of protection, as required. (For example, an IoT device such as a thermostat may have its own ruleset that restricts online access to anything except its required/trusted destinations)
How else do you protect SMEs from cyber-attacks?
In addition to our proprietary adam:ONE solution, Nerds On Site maintains a membership with a prominent Internet Security body and our team leverages training and best-practice resources. Additionally, we have internal teams that specialize in various aspects of IT security, and these teams support our nerds everywhere.
Tell us more about adam:ONE’s ‘Adaptive’ Zero-Trust technology.
Computers and internet-connected devices are constantly communicating over the Internet. Traditional cybersecurity measures attempt to identify harmful destinations and prevent our devices from communicating with them - essentially, this approach will “ALLOW, unless known to be bad”, and, unfortunately this has not proven to be overly effective as the number of threats and harmful destinations are established at a rate that far outstrips security-providers collective ability to keep track of the threats. adam:ONE’s adaptive ‘zero-trust’ solution takes a different approach. It assumes every internet destination is a potential threat, and will, by default, “BLOCK, unless trusted”. Our patented ‘DTTS - Don’t Talk To Strangers’ technology will even block direct-to-IP-address internet destinations that otherwise go unprocessed by DNS filtering alone.
Our ‘adaptive’ engine also allows us to overcome one of the challenges of implementing a zero-trust approach. Adding ‘safe and legitimate’ destinations to the ALLOW list has typically been time-consuming and cumbersome - and not always able to be done in a timely manner.
For example, an Internet user may need to visit a new website that is not currently on the ‘allow’ list… opening a ticket to have the IT team make the necessary changes each time a new website needs to be investigated and added to the ‘allow’ list… is not ideal. Our ‘adaptive’ engine will process requests for ‘new’ internet destinations in near real-time.
Each new destination is thoroughly checked against a number of criteria and reputation markers to determine whether or not it is safe, and appropriate. Based on the findings, the site either remains LOCKED (if it lacks a trustworthy reputation), or is ALLOWED (if found to be safe, with a trustworthy reputation)... this whole process typically takes less than 60 seconds, which makes it incredibly safe, AND practical.
How satisfied are your clients with the services you provide?
We are extremely grateful to have received an overwhelming amount of positive feedback from our clients over the years. We have over 95,000 reviews posted at https://reviews.nerdsonsite.com, with an average 4.83 star rating. We are so very proud of our worldwide team’s collective commitment to Client experience.
What is your mission and vision statement? How successful have you been in meeting your goals?
Our mission: “We build bridges between our Clients and our collaborative team of experts to remove the inefficiencies and threats of inadequate IT and cybersecurity, thereby liberating our clients to focus on what matters most to them — their enterprise” As much as technology has advanced and fuelled our lives in the last 2 decades, we know that the technology revolution is still in its infancy and will continue to accelerate in ways we can’t yet comprehend. With it will come new opportunities, and new threats. SMEs will continue to leverage technology and move us forward,but will continue to need technology guidance and support they can trust. To that end, we will continue to strive to be the best friend of SMEs everywhere.
Charlie Regan, CEO
CEO(capability expansion orchestrator). Charlie is the CEO of a number of interesting and growing enterprises - Nerds On Site, Tactical Marketing Solutions, and Augusta Business Coaching RAF Enterprising, among others. He also works closely with several more Canadian and American based firms. Charlie guest lectured for a number of years at the University of Windsor as part of their Co-op M.B.A. prgm, as well as the University of Michigan.
David Redekop, Co-founder
The rise of cybercrime has landed David squarely in the cyber security industry with a strong focus on incident response and prevention of security lapses by implementing practical, yet strong policies that use the latest that gateway security and endpoint protection are able to offer, including his own patent-pending solutions applied to the Zero Trust Model.
John Harbarenko, Co-founder
In 1995, John was working as a computer technician at an electronics big-box store when he saw a need in the marketplace for ‘personalized’ technology service, and an opportunity to break the ice between computer owners, and computer nerds. That same year, John, along with David Redekop, co-founded ‘Nerds On Site’ to fill this void in the market and provide onsite services to homes and businesses.
“We build bridges between our Clients and our collaborative team of experts to remove the inefficiencies and threats of inadequate IT and cybersecurity, thereby liberating our Clients to focus on what matters most to them — their enterprise”
“We believe technology should be a liberator for our Clients, not a threat.”