CASE STUDY: A Multi Location Nationwide Chain based in California, of Assisted Living Facilities becomes Infected with a Remote Desktop-spreading virus concurrently across all of its locations. All locations are HIPAA compliant so all virus removals must be done onsite without patient data leaving the premises.

 

Client Initial Diagnosis and Environment: Initially, All IT Supported was instructed to follow a set of specific removal procedures. This included a recovery dvd and usb flash drive with Symantec Recovery software installed on it, that would be shipped to each location by the client’s helpdesk. Upon arrival to each location it was discovered that 80% or more machines lacked the system requirements of 512 MB RAM to run the software, lacked dvd-reading capability, or boot-from-usb capabilities.

Solutions: As a redundant safety measure, All IT Supported created the following additional virus removal procedures.

-Created a centralized staging area for all tools in case onsite service engineers needed to download additional tools as they became available, on a centralized section of their website.

- Required each onsite service engineer to bring blank cd’s in case the computers lacked dvd-rom drives.

-Required each onsite field technician to bring additional virus removal tools, to confirm virus removal, in case the computers were not able to be disinfected with original tools.

All of these tactics became useful immediately as each location had several problems.

  1. 1.Most computers lacked dvd-rom drives
  2. 2.Most computers lacked usb-flash-drive booting capability
  3. 3.Most computers used shared video memory and only had 512 MB of RAM total, which left <512 MB available to run antivirus tools. Symantec Recovery Tools require at least 512 MB of available ram, so other tools had to be used.

All IT Supported leveraged its ability to commit a large amount of onsite service engineers very quickly and efficiently in this project. 38 engineers arrived onsite simultaneously, and worked with All IT Supported’s dispatch coordinators, service managers, and remote support engineers to remove the virus infection properly, and to properly document their work.

Challenges: The project was made more difficult by the following requirements.

-All locations had to be done concurrently.

-There was not enough dedicated support staff at the client’s location and the client requested that All IT Supported perform level 1  support for its onsite service engineers.

-Conflicting directions that were issued to All IT Supported, as well as directly to the onsite service engineers. It was later determined that pc’s that were too old to run Symantec Recovery Tools were to be retired and set aside.

-Due to HIPAA regulations, computers had to be done onsite instead of being taken to a specialized facility, substantially increasing the overall cost of the project. 

 

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