As we take today to honor all military veterans, the team at Sulzer US concludes its first clothing drive in support of the Purple Heart Foundation. The Purple Heart Foundation provides support to veterans and their families through grants, outreach programs, and donations to organizations whose programs help veterans.
The clothing drive, held through the months of October and early November, turned out to be a great success! Team members graciously donated gently used clothing, handbags, and shoes in support of the Foundation. We are so grateful for everyone’s participation.
Happy Veterans Day!
Meet Holger, our Delivery Manager. Holger joined Sulzer US as a Service Manager in August 2017 and was recently promoted to Delivery Manager. His favorite part of the role is also the most rewarding – to see people grow into their roles and reach their full potential, even sometimes above their own expectations. Holger’s biggest accomplishment so far has been adjusting to the company culture, which is very different compared to his former jobs, and of course settle down in the US which is very different from all the places he lived in Europe. His goals for the near future are to continue supporting the team and the company to reach set goals and planned growth. Outside of work, Holger enjoys sports, reading a catching sci-fi novel or hitting the cinema for a nice movie. Be on the lookout for more updates on our new projects as 2019 will be big for us at Sulzer US!
Uh oh! Halloween is over, but are you too afraid to take our pop quiz? Find out what IT security topics cause fear in your life by taking our short pop quiz and reflecting on where you need to improve. The questions for this quiz can be found throughout the Sulzer Security Newsletters, beginning in November of 2017. Good luck!!
If you took a pop quiz about information security, how do you think you would do?
Well, we hope you have been catching up on the Sulzer Security Newsletters each month, because you could be tested in the near future! Our Junior Cyber Security Consultant, Matthew McCaffrey put together a fun pop quiz covering topics in the monthly newsletters. The answers to this possible exam can be found in previous newsletters, listed in sequence by month. For example – question #1 will be taken from his first ever newsletter back in November 2017! Better get your reading caps on!
So when can you expect this pop quiz?? We will have it available on the Sulzer US blog early next week, so keep an eye out for it and let us know how you score! But don’t worry if you do not do well – there may be other exams in the future.
Meet Heribert, Account manager. Heribert has been an Account Manager and Project Manager at Sulzer for 8 months now. His favorite part of the role is being able to interact with his team members and guide them because it’s great to watch them grow and become better in what they are doing! His biggest accomplishment so far was moving to the US and becoming used to the work culture and his goal is to help the company grow while ensuring client satisfaction. When he’s not handling all things management, Heribert enjoys spending time with his twin boys and reading. Be on the lookout for more updates on our DSD project for BMW because Heribert’s team is working hard behind it!
The new “standard” regarding verification in IT security has become two-factor authentication. This is a process that can use a wide array of authenticators to allow a user access to an account. An example scenario of two-factor authentication could be: a user downloads a new application and enters their email address and corresponding password to create a new account (first factor). After this, a prompt appears to ask for a mobile phone number to send a 4-8-character pin, which is then entered in the prompt (second factor), authenticating the user. This is just one example of how two-factor authentication works. But, is this truly enough?
There are many conflicting opinions regarding two-factor authentications. Many security professionals believe that it is in fact not enough, while businesses believe that it is. A 2016 Secureauth survey recorded that 99% of IT decision makers thought that two-factor authentication was the best way to secure identity and access.  The reality is that hackers are adapting and figuring out ways to intercept messages, breaching two-factor authentication methods.
So, what’s on the horizon for advanced authentication? Three factor authentications? Four factor authentications? Well…. yeah. Businesses are evolving to advanced authentications (several factor authentication). But is there a limit on the number of authenticators? Probably. At this point in time businesses are moving to systems that require additional levels of verification based on the sensitivity of the data. This can almost be thought of as a pyramid. The higher you get (or deeper into the data) the more complex it is to reach, meaning you need more authenticators.
So… what can a user do to ensure that their two-factor authentication is secure in the meantime? Use an authenticator (the google authenticator application is great) instead of an SMS password. SMS passwords are becoming more and more vulnerable as hackers are becoming proficient in sim card attacks. Defined below:
“A SIM swap attack, also known as a SIM intercept attack, is a form of identity theft in which an attacker convinces a cell phone carrier into switching a victim’s phone number to a new device to gain access to bank accounts, credit card numbers and other sensitive information.” 
Another measure to ensure that your two-factor authentication is “more secure” is to implement Yubikeys. Defined below:
The YubiKey is a hardware authentication device manufactured by Yubico that supports one-time passwords, public-key encryption and authentication, and the Universal 2nd Factor (U2F) protocol developed by the FIDO Alliance (FIDO U2F). … The 4th generation YubiKey launched on November 16, 2015.
To summarize: a Yubikey is a piece of hardware that plugs into the USB port of your computer. This Yubikey works in conjunction with a username and password. If the username and password is compromised, but the Yubikey is not plugged into the USB port access will be denied.
Realistically, two-factor authentications should be a standard at this point. As time goes on things will change (as they always do in IT security) and, two-factor will become obsolete. In the meantime, making sure your business is at least up to par, and using two-factor authentication could help, and even add legitimacy to your businesses reputation.
By, Matthew McCaffrey
By Frank Buch
Another health challenge was announced in the last week of August. This time the goal is to do 10,000 steps each day for 5 days. This will end up in 50,00 steps for a whole week.That sounds quite a lot to me. Usually I do between 3 and 4 thousand steps per day. Now doing 10,000 each day for 5 days is a real challenge. I prepared myself mentally and set the goal to go running (on a treadmill) each day of the week.
While in the office, I managed to get around 3,000 steps in. So, I had to go to the gym and take my plan into action. I went on the treadmill and used a pre-set routine that is 5 miles long. (I never ran more than 5k which equals 3.1 miles).
I knew if I finished 5 miles, then I would hit the 10,000 steps target for the day. My calves started hurting just a few minutes into the run and then around 20 minutes later my feet started to slowly get numb. Nevertheless, I wanted to get my steps in for the day and hit my personal goal of running 5 miles. After 62 minutes, I finally reached the goal and was happy to finish the run and get some rest.
I completed day #1 with a total of 14,514 steps!
Getting up in the morning, I knew I would get some soreness in my legs as I have never run 5 miles before. Usually it takes around 20 – 24 hours for me to become sore in a muscle. Using this information, I decided to start my day off running first to avoid any kind of muscle pain in the late evening.
That means I headed into the gym right in the morning, before work. I accepted the challenge and went for another 5-mile run. This time it felt even more difficult, but I had my phone with me and distracted myself from the pain by watching some motivational YouTube videos. It worked out great! I even finished the 5 miles two minutes faster than the day before.
After taking a shower I went straight into the office. Having on-site client meetings on Tuesday led to even more steps that day. I was able to finish day #2 with an all-time high of 17,788 steps!!
I was planning to run again, but this time the soreness from the last two days took over. After work I was able to do a little bit of running, but I couldn’t reach my personal goals to complete the 10,000 steps on Wednesday. Therefore, I ended up with only 9,062 steps! Still a high number and having in mind that I finished the first two days with a lot more steps I had built myself a buffer.
On Thursday things went somehow worse. I felt some pain in my left foot. My body was not used to this kind of intense training and running for an extended period. I still wanted to get the 50,000 steps by the end of the week. Therefore, I took it slow, did my usual 3-4k steps a day and headed into the gym after work. There I only took some slow walks and did a usual full body workout (leaving out the legs).
That day I was only able to get up to 8,598 steps. This lead me to a total of 49,962 steps by end of Thursday. At this time, I knew I am safe and can easily finish the 50,000 steps by end of the week.
Fridays throughout the summer we had Summer Fridays in the office, that usually included outside activities. The 3rd Friday of the month was special as we had a BBQ party after work in a park nearby. There we had lots of fun playing cornhole and soccer. This helped me getting my steps up again for the final round.
At the end of the day I reached another 9,265 steps. Finally, the challenge was over, and I hit my goals!
It was fun and really challenging to get up to 50,000 steps in a 5-day week. I knew I could do it and believed in myself from the beginning. In the end it’s all about the effort that you put into it. Same with every other aspect of life: the more time you dedicate to your goals, the more likely you are going to achieve them.
I was happy I participated in the challenge. Next time I may pace myself in the beginning to stay strong until the end. Next goal: Spartan Beast 14+ mile run this weekend 😊
Thanks for reading!
Everything is better in your pajamas! For the past couple of weeks, employees of Sulzer US have been working remotely from their homes, as they patiently await the news to move into their brand new Sulzer office space! Until then, working from home is the way of life for our IT family.
Check out some the work stations that have been keeping our employees busy!