FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) —
A large-scale cyberattack paralyzed companies in almost every corner of the world Friday – demanding ransom from owners in exchange for locked files.
More than a dozen hospitals and companies, including FedEx, were hit. Monitors at BCT Consulting track the number of malicious attacks around the world. As of Friday evening, there were so many, the computer monitor froze.
“I think it would be safe to assume that World War III-style attacks were taking place throughout the web,” Brandon Griggs with the company said.
Griggs is the director of technical support and says this wave of cyber attacks is one of the largest, most organized he’s seen. The ransomware infects machines, locks them by encrypting data, and then extorts money to let users back in.
“What is typically the case, they will hold it ransom for a certain number of days, demand money for it, and if they don’t get it they delete your files,” he said.
At least 16 U.K. hospitals were hit and more than 75,000 computers were affected worldwide. BCT consulting hasn’t didn’t have any customers report problems Friday but says previous waves pushed California businesses to the verge of bankruptcy.
“Many companies have gone out of business,” Griggs warned. “We’ve seen police departments locked up, can’t process records that need to be done, doctors-patient information at hospitals.”
In most cases, the software infects computers through links or attachments in phishing emails. Experts say don’t click on those links, ensure security updates are installed and regularly back up your data.
“Businesses absolutely have to have offsite backups,” Griggs said. “It’s a daily occurrence that people called us and said, ‘We need backups, our data was infected.’”
The investigation into the malware is just starting, but experts say cyber attacks like this one will only grow worse and more sophisticated with time.
Fresno-based BCT Consulting has acquired two Bay Area tech firms in a deal valued in the “less than $5 million dollar range.”
That’s the word of CEO Eric Rawn, who made the announcement at a morning press conference with local officials including council member Steve Brandau and Fresno’s Mayor-elect Lee Brand.
Rawn said BCT Consulting plans to create up to 50 new jobs based on the acquisition of TeleDynamic Communications and Wireless Fiber Technology. TeleDynamic Communications, a 35-year-old firm, will allow BCT to expand its phone service technology for small to medium-sized businesses. The purchase of Wireless Fiber Technology gives BCT access to licensing deals and fiber optic and wireless network capacity.
Brand, who beat Fresno County Supervisor Henry Perea for the city’s top executive position last week, said this is the sort of organic growth he will encourage as mayor.
“It’s a top priority to develop these advanced industry jobs,” Brand said. “These are the kinds of jobs Fresno needs.”
The gathering stressed a vision for Fresno’s future as a technology hub. Larry Westerlund, Fresno’s director of economic development, recounted a trip to Silicon Valley with Mayor Ashley Swearengin to promote Fresno as an expansion zone to tech firm executives. Westerlund said the tech leaders were especially intrigued in the Central Valley as the first leg for the high-speed rail system, which promises faster connectivity between Fresno and Silicon Valley.
“The interest really turned up when we were talking about high-speed rail,” Westerlund said.
BCT Consulting, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, is no stranger to acquisitions. In 2013 BCT purchased Sigma Communications in Sunnyvale.
In August BCT Consulting ranked at No. 4,090 in Inc. Magazine’s 5,000 fastest growing U.S. companies, with 2015 revenue of $7.4 million.
Fresno technology solutions company BCT Consulting has expanded its presence into the Bay Area with its purchase of Sigma Communications.
With its services geared primarily geared toward the Central Valley, BCT Consulting President Eric Rawn said the move will help the company better serve customers in the technology-centric Silicon Valley.
Sigma Communications, founded in 2011 in Sunnyvale, provides technology solutions to many customers in the pharmaceutical, biotech and high-tech industries that BCT Consulting has long eyed for growth in the Bay Area.
The amount of the acquisition were not disclosed, however Rawn said BCT Consulting will retain Sigma Communication’s employees, offices and equipment as well as its president for the first year under a contractual arrangement.
“One of the great advantages of this acquisition is that our services between the two companies are nearly identical, so consolidating employees and infrastructure will be very efficient and cost effective,” Rawn said. “This acquisition will help further grow our presence in the Bay Area and East Coast and will also allow us to expand our telecommunications infrastructure for increased reliability and redundancy by allowing our backbone to expand outside of California.”
Established in 1996, BCT Consulting is home to more than 40 employees providing its customers with tech support, website design, search engine optimization, data forensics, data cabling, Internet-based phone service and web-based application and mobile application development.
The company has offices in Chicago, Portland, San Francisco and Los Angeles besides its headquarters in Fresno.
BCT Consulting was recently bestowed with the Best in Class honor from Interactive Media Awards for its work designing the website of De Young Properties and also made Inc.com’s 2012 and 2013 Inc. 5000 list for the nation’s fastest growing companies.
FRESNO, CA — BCT Consulting, Inc., an award-winning design firm headquartered in Fresno, CA., today announced that it has been awarded Best in Class by the Interactive Media Awards™ for its work on the De Young Properties Website. The honor recognizes that the project met and surpassed the basic standards of excellence that comprise the web’s most professional work. The site was honored specifically for excellence in Building/Construction.
The judging consisted of various criteria, including design, usability, innovation in technical features, standards compliance and content. In order to win this award level, the site had to meet strict guidelines in each area — an achievement only a fraction of sites in the IMA competition earn each quarter.
Eric G. Rawn, President and Founder of BCT Consulting, Inc., said, “This award is further validation that BCT Consulting, Inc. is a leader in the industry, able to effectively and efficiently develop powerful and appealing websites for our valuable clients.”
FRESNO, Calif., Sep 26, 2013 (BUSINESS WIRE) — BCT Consulting, Inc. (Business Computer Technology) has been named to the Lead411 “Tech 200 List” of the fastest growing technology companies in the US. This distinguished list has been published by Lead411 for four years now and highlights US tech companies with the highest percent of revenue growth from 2010 to 2012. Lead411 calculates revenue growth by percentages vs. dollar growth. BCT ranked 126th for 2013 with a growth of 71% within three years.
BCT Consulting was founded in 1996 by its President, Eric Rawn, a Fresno State University and Craig School of Business graduate. Rawn is among the nation’s top entrepreneurial leaders and has been previously ranked as one of the top 40 under 40 successful individuals in California’s Central Valley.
BCT has also been named to the Inc. 500a”e5000 list for the fourth year in a row. The Inc. list ranks private companies by revenue over a three-year period, including fastest-growing companies by industry, metro area, and number of employees.
“We’re very proud of the fact that we have grown steadily regardless of the economic condition,” said Rawn, who over the past several years has implemented technology-based cost-saving, highly innovative solutions for small to medium sized organizations. “By adapting our business model to best meet client needs in economically challenging times, we’ve been able to set ourselves apart from the competition.”
BCT’s list of clients includes law and accounting firms, insurance agencies, non-profits, government agencies and small businesses throughout California. The company launched in Fresno in 1996 and has since opened offices in Chicago, Portland, San Francisco and Los Angeles. “It’s not uncommon for us to save a new client hundreds to thousands of dollars per month by showing them how to utilize state-of-the-art technology more efficiently,” said Rawn.
Cleveland, OH, August 13, 2013 – Rawn, Eric has been nominated for a 2013 Small Business Influencer Award in the category of Leaders.
The Small Business Influencer Awards honor those who are influential to small businesses in North America, through the products, services, knowledge, information or support they provide to the small business market.
The Awards are designed to recognize the unsung heroes of small businesses those who support and encourage entrepreneurs and small business owners, and help them achieve success and stay successful.
Says Anita Campbell, CEO of Small Business Trends and one of the co-founders of the Awards along with Ramon Ray of SmallBizTechnology.com, “Influencers are those who play crucial roles in the small business ecosystem, but who often are in the background. Many of the nominees are themselves small business owners, entrepreneurs or small businesses. The impact of the Awards goes well beyond nominees, however the awards also encourage and excite the nominees’ employees. The Awards are intended to provide that added little boost in motivation and morale that can make a big difference in results. Being nominated also distinguishes the nominee from competitors, and in that sense can lead to competitive advantage.”
About the Small Business Influencer Awards
The Small Business Influencer Awards, now in their third year, enable the small business community to nominate and show their support for those that influence and support them. The Awards have an open nomination period, with community voting, and then a judging period by a group of industry-knowledgeable judges.
The Small Business Influencer Awards initiative is produced by Small Business Trends, an award-winning online publication, serving over 6,000,000 small business owners, stakeholders and entrepreneurs annually, and SmallBizTechnology.com, a media company that produces online content and live events educating small and mid-sized companies on how to strategically use technology as a tool to grow their businesses. The Awards can be found on the Web at: SMBInfluencers.com.