C-Forward has been awarded the Business Engagement of the Year award

C-Forward has been awarded the Business Engagement of the Year award by the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce and Northern Kentucky Education Council.

The Excellence in Education Celebration is presented by the NKY Chamber in partnership with the Northern Kentucky Education Council.

The Title Sponsor is Northern Kentucky University. The Award Sponsor is Duke Energy. Event sponsors include Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International AirportGateway Community & Technology College and Learning Grove. The Reception Sponsor is Chick-fil-A Mall Road.

Covington Business Council honors Brent Cooper with Founders Award at annual dinner

Brent Cooper, president and CEO of the NKY Chamber of Commerce and founder of C-Forward, received the 2019 Founders Award from the Covington Business Council at its annual dinner.

C-Forward is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. It’s headquarters is in downtown Covington.The event was held at the Madison Event Center.

The award was presented by Rhonda Whitaker of Duke Energy.

Molly Wellman shared stories and her knowledge of bourbon and created a special ‘Love the Cov’ drink for annual dinner attendees.

Winners of the Kentucky Edge Bourbon Festival raffle were Jesse Brewer from Al Neyer and Amada King from Forcht Bank.

NKY’s Next Generation Leadership Award Winners Named

Northern Kentucky’s next generation of business leaders was honored at a ceremony earlier this month.

Northern Kentucky Young Professionals (NKYP), part of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, presented its Next Generation Leader Awards (NGLA) in front of a sold-out crowd at the Newport Aquarium.

The River City News publisher Michael Monks served as master of ceremonies.

The NGLAs salute and applaud young professionals under the age of 40 for significant professional accomplishments, demonstrated leadership, and community impact. This year, the NGLAs celebrate ten years of highlighting talented young leaders, and the continued impact that former NGLA recipients are making throughout the region.

The 2019 winners in each category are as follows:


Jacob Brooks, YMCA of Greater Cincinnati


David Kay, PNC Bank


Tess Brown, Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky


Kristen Smitherman-Voltaire, Turner Construction


Tom Haggard, Brighton Center


Mavis Linnemann, The Delish Dish and Made by Mavis


Laura Brinson, Northern Kentucky Health Department


Murphy Stephens, St. Elizabeth Healthcare


Mike Grout, C-Forward

Additional awards were presented to Carri Chandler, Vice President of the St. Elizabeth Foundation, who received the 2019 NKYP Legend Award. The NKYP Legend Award is presented to an individual that was an active young professional leader with Legacy/NKYP, and who has continued to inspire leadership and career success after their participation.

Jamie Ritter, Director of Marketing at Johnson Investment Counsel, received the 2019 Emerging Philanthropist Award presented by the Northern Kentucky Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation. This award recognizes a young philanthropic leader, 40 years or younger, who demonstrates a passionate desire to give back and make Greater Cincinnati a more vibrant, prosperous region. The recipient gives generously of his or her time, experience, and resources for the benefit of our community – and inspires others to do the same.

C-Forward Named as Top National Managed Service Provider


Dale Silver


C-Forward Named as Top National Managed Service Provider (MSP)
Also Celebrating our 20th year of IT Services

Covington, KY: Local IT experts, C-Forward has been recognized as one of the Top 250 IT Companies in America by CRN.  This marks the fifth straight year that C-Forward has made this prestigious list.  CRN’s 2019 recognizes North American IT solution providers that have cutting-edge approaches to managed services.  The MSP Pioneer 250 have largely built their business model around providing managed services to the SMB market.

A Managed Service Provider (MSP)  is a company that remotely manages a customer’s IT infrastructure and/or end-user systems, typically on a proactive basis and under a subscription model.

The following are direct links to The Channel Co. CRN MSP Awards for 2019:


About C-Foward: Founded in 1999, C-Forward, Inc. is a company that provides Information Technology consulting services to businesses in all market segments.  C-Forward is celebrating our 20th year as a leader in IT and Managed Services. We are network administrators. We install, configure, and support a variety of computers and computer related software and equipment. Anything that touches a computer network we support. PCs, servers, firewalls, switches, and all the related software. C-Forward employs professionals that share a vision of providing quality IT solutions to their customers.

Whether it is an emergency support call, specific product implementation or project, or ongoing support, C-Forward is dedicated to helping companies “look forward” to the future.


5 West 5th Street Covington, KY 41011


Protect Yourself from the Marriott Hack

Last week the hotel behemoth Marriott announced a massive hack that impacts as many as 500 million customers who made a reservation at a Starwood hotel. Marriott acquired the Starwood hospitality group in September 2016, which operates numerous hotel brands including Sheraton, Westin, Aloft, and W Hotels. But the intrusion that caused the enormous data breach predates Marriott’s acquisition, beginning in 2014.

Marriott says it is cooperating with law enforcement and regulators in investigating the hack, and the company hasn’t finalized the number of people impacted. It currently seems that about 170 million Marriott customers only had their names and basic information like address or email address stolen. But the bulk of the victims—currently thought to be 327 million people—had different combinations of name, address, phone number, email address, date of birth, gender, trip and reservation information, passport number, and Starwood Preferred Guest account information all stolen.

Some credit card numbers were also stolen as part of the breach, Marriott says, but the company did not provide an initial estimate of how many were taken. The credit card numbers were encrypted with the algorithm AES-128—a reasonably robust choice—but Marriott says the attackers may have also compromised the decryption keys needed to unlock the data.

All in all, it’s not a great situation.

“We deeply regret this incident happened,” Arne Sorenson, Marriott’s president and CEO said in a statement on Friday. “We are doing everything we can to support our guests. … We are devoting the resources necessary to phase out Starwood systems and accelerate the ongoing security enhancements to our network.”

A Historic Breach

Breach response experts told WIRED on Friday that the sheer amount of time the attackers had inside the system—four years in all—likely made the breach much worse than it otherwise might have been. Time gives attackers the ability to chip away at defenses, or simply learn more about a system to understand where the valuable data is. Even with encrypted data, like the credit card numbers in this case, an attacker with enough access could steal the decryption keys, or swipe sensitive data before it ever has a chance to be encrypted in the first place. Either scenario seems possible, given the details Marriott has released so far.

Marriott says a digital security tool flagged suspicious attempted access to its United States Starwood guest reservation database on September 8 of this year. The company investigated, and seems to have blocked attacker access by September 10, because it says that no customer data was stolen after that date. But Marriott also says its initial investigation didn’t definitively identify the scope of the problem until more than two months later, on November 19.

marriot hack biggest in history

Marriott says its own digital systems were not affected, only the Starwood side. Some penetration testers and network breach responders speculated to WIRED that Marriott’s acquisition of Starwood may have played a role in delaying detection if the companies were distracted by the larger topic of brokering the deal.

What You Can Do

Marriott is rolling out batches of notification emails to impacted customers. It has also established a call center and breach notification website, you can’t use it to look up whether your information was stolen, or how much of it. Marriott seems to be erring on the side of assuming that every Starwoods customer has been impacted. “If you made a reservation on or before September 10, 2018 at a Starwood property, information you provided may have been involved,” the company’s breach response page reads.

The company is also offering enrollment in the identity monitoring service WebWatcher for one year to anyone who thinks they were impacted by the four-year network intrusion. You can sign up now. The service alerts you if your information crops up online, including on the dark web. Enrollment also includes a reimbursement benefit for expenses related to fraud and identify theft, and unlimited consultation with identity theft specialists at the corporate incident response firm Kroll. The services are available to people in the US, Canada, and United Kingdom.

If you’ve stayed at an SPG hotel in the last few years, the standard advice applies: Enroll in the free monitoring, change your SPG password—and on any other account where you might have reused it—and watch your finances for suspicious activity.

The Marriott breach does have a slightly less common, though not unheard of, component of exposing hundreds of millions of passport numbers. These can be used to make counterfeit passports, a classic black market industry. But they can also be combined with other personal details about someone, like the data points stolen in the Marriott breach, to bolster traditional online fraud and abuse. And passport numbers lend an air of legitimacy to other information like name, address, date of birth, and email, potentially allowing scammers to open bank or credit card accounts in victims’ names.

Crane Hassold, senior director of threat research at the phishing defense firm Agari, points out that passport numbers can also be used to track someone’s movements. For example, US Customs and Border Protection offers a public database for tracking your travel history. Someone with your information, particularly your passport number, can run the queries, too. US citizens can renew their passports at any time to receive a new passport number, applying by mail or in person at an approved State Department facility. If you are years away from a passport’s expiration, you may need to include a letter with the application about your reason for renewing early.


source:  Wired

Make Mobile Security a Priority

Businesses with mobile device programs, whether BYOD or employer-owned, can definitely increase productivity, efficiency, employee satisfaction, and revenue. The key is to develop a mobile security plan to ensure your company and client data remains secure.

Here are a few ways to make mobile security a priority:

  • Hold mobile security training sessions: By training employees and managers on the importance of mobile security and how to prevent cyber-attacks, businesses can mitigate risk.
  • Have mobile policies in place: A mobile usage policy will ensure that employees know what they can and can’t access. This can bring security to the forefront when it comes to company mobile devices.
  • Require device best practices: Whether it is employer owned mobile devices or BYOD smartphones, having security best practices is paramount. Install anti-virus, and malware software, endpoint management software, and two-factor authentication.
  • Use encryption: Encryption can support your mobile security efforts, such as a Virtual Private Network (VPN). This is an additional layer of protection that makes it more challenging for hackers to access company and client data.
  • Schedule security audits: Security audits that are scheduled regularly is an important part of any business security plan. Ensure mobile is incorporated in that plan. This can help companies identify potential threats or breaches before they become serious.

Mobile security is essential to any business, especially since mobile device use in the workplace has become the norm. You may not be able to ignore the need for a mobile workforce forever and having mobile device best practices in place can help keep your company safe from cyber-attacks, malware, and other malicious attacks.

Give your employees the tools to be more productive, helping you meet your business goals. But also educate them on the risks of using those valuable tools.


Kevin Stiverson of C-Forward will join Leadership Northern Kentucky Class of 2019

C-Forward is proud to announce that Kevin Stiverson, Vice President Projects, has been selected to the Leadership Northern Kentucky Class of 2019 with the NKY Chamber of Commerce.  The class consists of 52 professionals from businesses around Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati region.

The nine-month program utilizes the community as a classroom to help participants gain an understanding of the strengths and opportunities of the Northern Kentucky region and the skills necessary to motivate and engage others in collaborative efforts to address them.

Since its inception, 1,300 alumni have come together through the Leadership Northern Kentucky program to make a difference in the community. At the end of each year the classes have used their insights gained during the program to complete hands-on projects aimed at supporting and improving the community. Past projects include Unlock the Block, Hopebox Derby, River Cities Relay, UpStart, Emergency Shelter NKY, the NKY MakerSpace, and more.

Hall of Honors to induct Brent Cooper, Covington Education Foundation 2017 Person of the Year

A bomber pilot, a doctor, a philanthropist, a lawyer and a public relations expert will be inducted into the Holmes High School Hall of Honors this year.

The Hall was established in 2000 to honor distinguished graduates and/or friends of Covington Schools for their achievements and contributions to society.

The winners will be recognized during the Hall of Honors event at 6 p.m., June 14, at the Drees Pavilion.

In the days leading up to the event, the Tribune will recognize each of the Covington Education Hall of Honors winners with a profile of accomplishments and contributions.

The Covington Education Foundation’s 2017 Person of the Year, Brent Cooper


Brent Cooper, is a busy man who plays leading roles in organizations that extend far beyond C-Forward Information Technologies, the managed service provider that he founded in 1999 and which now has offices in downtown Covington and in Lexington.

Over the years, Cooper has established himself as a friend of the Covington schools and a friend of education in a number of ways. He chairs the education and workforce committee for the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, serves on the boards of the Northern Kentucky Education Council, the Northern Kentucky University Foundation Board, the Strive Partnership of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky and is a former board member of Gateway Community and Technical College.

Late in May, Cooper agreed to serve as the interim president of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce after Trey Grayson announced that he was stepping down as president and CEO to pursue other interests. Cooper had played a similar role three years ago when Grayson’s predecessor, Steve Stevens, had resigned to take another job.

Cooper, a University of Kentucky graduate who lives in Ft. Thomas with his wife Lisa and their two daughters, also serves on the boards of the Baptist Health Board and the Northern Kentucky Convention Center.

The 2017 Hall of Honors winners will be recognized during the celebration event at 6 p.m., June 14, at the Drees Pavilion. This will mark the first year for the Hall of Honors, which combines the Hall of Distinction and the Covington Education Foundation’s Person of the Year. The revamped event is designed to honor alumni, celebrate supporters of the school – all while raising funds to support the foundation’s efforts to help students succeed by providing scholarships, paying college fees and assisting with the district’s mentoring program. Ticket price $55 per person. Tables and advertisements are also available.

For information, sponsorship opportunities and ticket prices, click here or contact Janice Krumwiede at, Janice.krumwiede@covington.kyschools.us or 859 392-3182.

C-Forward Receives Cool Tech Award

On September 29th, 2015, C-Forward received the “Cool Tech Award” from Cincinnati Magazine.  The event, attended by C-Forward President Brent Cooper and C-Forward Vice President Scott Johnson, was attended by technology leaders from all over Kentucky and Ohio.  C-Forward received the award for it’s recent support innovations and “60 Sec of Tech” show.

Click here for link to Cincy Magazine Award page

C-Forward Cool Tech Award Scott & Brent

C-Forward Cool Tech Award BoothC-Forward Cool Tech Award ProgramC-Forward Cool Tech Award Trophy

C-Forward Manager receiving NKY Chamber Award

C-Forward is proud to congratulate Dale Silver on being selected as the NKY Chamber’s 2015 Pieschel Award winner. The Walter L. Pieschel Award is named in memory of the Northern Kentucky Chamber’s first volunteer leader.

The award recognizes an individual Chamber member who exemplifies outstanding service to the Chamber for the past 12 months.

Brent Cooper, C-Forward’s President and past Chair of the NKY Chamber Board, said, “This is a tremendous & well deserved honor for Dale. She continues to serve the NKY Chamber, and the community at large, in so many ways. She is caring, hard working, and wants to make a positive difference for our community. That’s who she is. For over 25 years she’s been helping lead the way. I feel so blessed to get to work with her, and I’m just thrilled she’s being honored.”

Dale has enjoyed representing the NKY Chamber since 1993 on numerous boards.

Most notably, the Board of Directors Executive Committee, Leadership NKY, and the Women’s Initiative. She is also extremely involved in the community, representing the Rosie Reds, Hoxworth Blood Center and Covington Business Council. Her motto “Be truly passionate about the cause you are involved with, as the organization’s success is the ultimate reward.”

Dale will be honored at the NKY Chamber’s Annual Dinner on Thursday, September 17th being held at the NKY Convention Center.

Please join our C-Forward employees and customers in congratulating Dale on this tremendous honor.