Small and Mid-sized Retailers Can Guard Customer Data From Cyberattacks Using IBM’s QRadar and Carbon Black Cb Endpoint Security Platform

Smaller and mid-sized retailers have been taking advantage of the new year by turning their attentions toward deepening their security postures to better prevent data breach-incurred financial losses. IBM research has revealed retail companies that experience a major data breach incur an average profit drop of 46% in the quarter after the breach is revealed. The damage to any retailer’s reputation post breach is quite severe, and is especially detrimental to smaller and mid-sized retailers that do not have the same financial failsafe as the big box retailers.

Despite this, 90% of reported data breaches have impacted small to mid-sized retailers, according to Trustwave research. The time has come for these small and mid-sized retailers to take a defensive stance by implementing a combined Carbon Black and QRadar solution to protect valuable internal and customer data and to prevent data breaches before they happen.

Defense is an Elemental Game

Retailers face dynamic primary security concerns. Security threats and vectors are in a constant state of evolution, with attackers growing more capable by the day. The growing business of selling hacking and attack tools only adds more gas to the fire.

This places an impetus on ensuring a security posture that is aligned to handle ever-escalating and evolving security threats. Champion recommends a next-gen solution that not only targets security threats of the past, but is also intelligent enough to rapidly detect and block any out-of-band network and activity behaviors and remediate them on the spot.

To do so, retailers should begin with the following pillars in their security posture:

  • Brute force intrusion detection and remediation. Having a control structure in place to quickly and effectively detect and neutralize brute force attacks is vital to protecting customer data. We have primarily seen these attacks target online shopping accounts and retail customer rewards accounts.
  • Hardening processes and controls. In setting a security policy, creating rules around the policy and letting it run automatically in the background brings a big gain in terms or security response and IT resource gains.
  • Next-gen activity analytic detection and remediation. This is perhaps the most powerful element of a modern security posture. By utilizing next-gen technology, retailers gain intelligent, self-learning security tools which provide real-time detection, response and reporting abilities.  
  • Perimeter and endpoint defenses. This provides defenses specific to the asset type, i.e. anti-malware software for a laptop, or an encryption layer on database information.

Once you have these pillars in place, there’s still a lot of building to be done. That is where these great tools come into play.

Carbon Black

The Carbon Black Cb Endpoint Security Platform is a great place to start. The Cb platform is geared towards PCI DSS compliance and can be utilized in all aspects of your infrastructure, from desktops and servers to POS and transactional devices. The Cb platform provides effective security controls and remediation functionality that allows you to better balance your security posture while making it easy to maintain PCI compliance inside and outside of your card data environments.

An additional benefit of the Cb Endpoint Security Platform comes in its additional protections. With these you go beyond what traditional anti-virus and client protection systems provide, such as RAM-scraping malicious software. This is particularly important when handling POS systems, as many retailers use a “set it and forget it” approach to these devices, despite knowing that all of them will at some point process and hold customer data in its memory. Remember the Target security breach? That was the result of a RAM-scraping malware attack. POS devices will remain vulnerable to attack vectors such as this without a next-gen tool like the Carbon Black Cb offering in place.


Introducing IBM QRadar as a next-gen SIEM solution is more than just a good idea. QRadar works as a security analytics tool that collects data and logs from various applications, appliances (i.e. switches and firewalls), network traffic patterns and endpoints. It is able to determine a normal pattern of operation from its innate ability to self-learn and create security rules for your environment. The rules are then applied to the collection data and logs, the results of which are then analyzed using threat detection information. If it detects anything abnormal or malicious, the threat is then meditated.

The beauty of the QRadar tool is that it accomplishes all of this in near real-time, with more than 90% of detected events being handled by intelligence driven automated remediation. This gives retailers a powerful and scalable next-gen SIEM tool that provides real-time data collection, analysis and threat detection remediation.

Engage A Leader

The dynamic and ever-morphing capabilities of today’s malicious software and security attack vectors makes it next to impossible for retailers to continue to build security postures around manual threat detection and remediation processes. In utilizing powerful next-gen SIEM tools like Carbon Black’s Cb Endpoint Security Platform and IBM’s QRadar, retailers now have the ability to get take an innovative security lead. Champion’s partnership and experience in this area makes us a vital partner in deepening and developing a next-gen data security posture. Contact us to speak with an expert today.


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Erick Bacallao joined Champion Solutions Group in 2015 after a career of Software Development in Cuba at the National Cancer Care Institute of Cuba, followed by moving to the States with allAware.


Champion acquired allAware and its properties and Erick has utilized his extensive background and expertise in IT and Software Development to rise to VP of Product Development in less than 5 years. During this time, Erick has been involved with key projects that led to the launch of numerous products including CSP Boss, Inscape platform and 365 Productivity Insights.


Erick has a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Havana. He won Gold Medals for Programming from the Ministry of Education in Cuba, and he is certainly still a Gold Medalist for Champion!


As President and CEO, Chris is responsible for the development of key strategic alliances and solution portfolio. He leads Champion’s go-to market and execution strategies for integrated offerings in the cloud, in security, and in digital infrastructure, always focusing on improving the customer experience and driving transformative business outcomes.


He also aligns key partner initiatives with company strategy and oversees corporate marketing and messaging to gain mindshare with customers and partners. It’s his vision and innovativeness that have catapulted Champion up the ranks to become a $100M+ organization—and one of the most respected solution providers in the industry.


Over the past two decades, Chris has also focused on mergers and acquisitions, as well as innovative product development. He is the original founder and an active member on the Board of Managed Maintenance, Inc., a SAAS provider and consulting firm that utilizes their award-winning One-View Portal to help the IT Channel and its customers manage their IT Maintenance.


Chris is also the original founder and chief strategist behind one of the original storage cloud providers, Storage Access / BluePoint. During the course of a few short years, he had raised $20M and took that company public on the Toronto Stock Exchange. It has since been acquired by Pomeroy.


In 2012, Chris led the acquisition of MessageOps and continued the product development and worldwide launch of its premier SAAS, 365 Command. Built on Microsoft Azure, 365 Command is currently managing over 1 million seats of Microsoft’s Office 365. After achieving this phenomenal milestone, 365 Command and other MessageOps O365 utilities were sold to Kaseya.


Over the past 35 years, Chris as worked tirelessly to not only advance his own career, but those of his employees. In addition to leading a $100M organization, Chris can also be found sitting with sales teams, cold calling and coaching, and validating why Champion has been listed on Best Places to Work by both South Florida Business Journal and Computerworld.

Ultimately, the success garnered by Champion Solutions Group, its associated companies, and their employees is due in large part to the leadership of its President and CEO. Perhaps the most fitting award Chris has earned is South Florida Business Journal’s 2013 Ultimate CEO Award.