Samaritan’s Feet leadership reached out to Apparo for help ensuring the security of their website.
Samaritan’s Feet is a Charlotte-based nonprofit, that serves and inspires hope in children by providing shoes as the foundation to a spiritual and healthy life resulting in the advancement of education and economic opportunities. Since its founding in 2003, Samaritan’s Feet and its partners have distributed over 7.5 million pairs of shoes in 108 countries and over 420 U.S. cities.
Angela Carlson, Executive Director of Finance and General Manager, Samaritan’s Feet shares why she reached out to Stephanie McKee, Apparo’s Director of Technology Engagements, “Hackers were accessing our email addresses via our website and sending fake messages to our vendors. It was a problem we needed to address quickly.”
Stephanie was able to match Samaritan’s Feet with corporate volunteers from Triaxiom Security, to conduct a risk assessment and provide recommendations for security improvements. See PDF of Project Snapshot.
We checked in recently with Kyle Bork, National Account Manager, Triaxiom and Angela Carlson from Samaritan’s Feet to learn about their work together through Apparo’s Tech Therapy Program.
While giving back to the Charlotte community has always been fundamental to Triaxiom’s mission, Kyle shares that encouraging nonprofits to accept that they needed the support was a challenge. “We act as ethical hackers to determine security faults before the bad guys find them. Unfortunately, many nonprofits don’t have the skill set or financial resources to address these issues. Hackers know that and target nonprofits. We want to use our skills and expertise to help protect their data. We set out to offer our services for free to help nonprofits, but found it to be a challenge convincing them to let someone ethically try to hack them. They were nervous about working with us and about getting hacked.”
That’s where Apparo came into the picture. “Having a trusted partner like Apparo, really helped us connect. The Samaritan’s Feet project was a great match, right in our wheelhouse. As our first engagement through Apparo, it could not have gone better. We were able to find security vulnerabilities that could have been taken advantage of to hurt their website or their brand name. Now, they will be able to address these and protect themselves.”
Angela agrees, sharing, “Without Apparo and Triaxiom’s support, we would have had to wait until next year to try to solve the problem. Now we don’t have to wait. We have detailed, prioritized, actionable recommendations for improving the security of our website and email communications. Not only did Triaxiom volunteers provide us with a report, but they walked us through it line-by-line to ensure our understanding. We’ve started implementing their recommendations and it’s going very smoothly.”