Three things to know: IT security

GREENFIELD — The city of Greenfield’s IT department is running security tests this week on its online network to ensure all city, employee and resident information is safe from hackers.

Given the number of large, well-known companies that have fallen victim to hacking attacks in recent months, city officials say they felt it was important to have an outside company evaluate the city’s online security. 

Here’s what residents need to know:

1. Hackers will test the system.

The city has contracted Redspin, a California-based company that performs security assessments to help companies protect IT infrastructure and critical information, to test its network. Essentially, it’s paying the company to test real-world hacking scenarios as a way to find vulnerabilities, City IT director Nick Reidman said.

Redspin will report its findings to the IT department. Employees are trained and ready to tighten security if needed.

2. There are a number of security efforts already in place.

The city has antivirus and anti-malware software installed on all computers that access the city’s network to protect it from attacks and viruses. Firewalls and Web filters are also in place to protect from intrusions.

Redspin will help identify any weaknesses in the existing security system.

3. Keeping residents’ information private is top priority

Reidman said the city follows the same guidelines as banking institutions to protect residents’ information when they engage the system by doing things such as paying utility bills online. Residents who pay their electricity bill through the city’s online bill pay system, for example, are redirected to a different page and must log in with credentials to verify their authenticity. Those measures, he said, protect the information from being stolen.

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Samm Quinn is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3275 or