Technology Solution Case Studies

Council on Aging of Buncombe County logoIn June 2022 Council on Aging of Buncombe County (COABC) - a local nonprofit serving aging adults and their caregivers in Buncombe County, NC and surrounding counties since 1964 - was the victim of a ransomware attack on their network disrupting their IT systems and creating significant operational challenges as a result. This costly, time-consuming, and sudden event disrupted the organization’s operations and strained its resources. After researching local businesses to provide the services needed to recover, COABC selected Epsilon, Inc. to take the necessary steps to rebuild the network and computer systems.

“Whenever a customer, much less a local non-profit, is affected by ransomware, it is frustrating,” said Matt Fraser, Vice President of Epsilon’s Commercial Services Division. Epsilon engineers deployed a plan to cut off all systems and services from the internet, and quickly rebuilt the Council on Aging’s primary infrastructure including network, servers, computers, and applications. “We were pleased to even provide a temporary network and secured computer systems so that Council on Aging could still operate throughout the restoration process.”

In addition, Epsilon addressed network and system security vulnerabilities, enhanced business continuity and backups, and even deployed cyber awareness training services to improve their employees' knowledge of cyber threats in the world today. “As a nonprofit with limited resources to fulfill the stark increase in demand for our services,” said Heather Bauer the Executive Director of COABC, “having a crisis such as a ransomware attack could have gone as far as closing our doors for good. By partnering with Epsilon who built their brand on providing white glove IT services based on security and compliance, we are confident that our systems are in good hands.”

After six months of providing these services and stabilizing the IT systems at COABC, Epsilon has further offered to help reduce monthly service costs in the form of a sponsorship. This sponsorship was much needed and valuable relief for COABC in the critical recovery phase. “Ensuring that Council on Aging continues to get top notch IT Services is so important to the success of their mission. Epsilon is happy to help ensure that COABC and their IT assets are supported, secured, and available for years to come without breaking the bank.” In addition, COABC secured additional support from a Janirve SUN grant from the Community Foundation of WNC, which enabled COABC to fund the remaining IT support costs for the fiscal year July 2022-June 2023.

“Having CFWNC and Epsilon as partners, both with caring, talented, and knowledgeable people on their teams, have made a tremendous difference in where we were as an organization prior to this ransomware attack, and where we are today,” Bauer states. COABC is proud to have this community support and we appreciate our partners beyond measure. Buncombe County’s aging population is being served at a higher level with these relationships.

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