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Benefits of Device-as-a-Service or DaaS for Small Businesses

multiple daas - Device-as-a-Service device options

DaaS can assist in providing an end-to-end solutions, including hardware, peripherals, and managed services to simplify and reduce overall IT costs.

When we think of work and the devices we use for work, many of us will readily mention a desktop computer, or a laptop and move on. Not too long ago, the “corporate” way of doing work was to rely on a particular device, say a desktop computer device that had enough ‘power user’ specifications, to ensure productivity. Laptops were not the main stay of any ‘serious worker’ since they were under powered and super expensive to warrant purchasing it for business use.

Today, thanks to cloud services like Amazon’s AWS, Google’s G Suite of productivity apps, Microsoft’s Office 365 and Azure, and the availability and stability of high-speed internet access, it is now possible to offload much of the work that needed powerful computers to the cloud.

That means that no matter which device we use, we are now able to transition work between devices and have the confidence that everything will be in-sync. In addition, it is also now possible for less powerful devices (like a Chromebook, for example) to become much more capable by tapping into file systems hosted in the cloud.

However, according to Forrester Research, about 74 percent of information workers use two or more devices for work — and 52 percent use three or more! To top it off, it is estimated that about 14 percent of employees use six or more corporate-issued or approved tech devices.

These devices include what Brian Hughes calls “the battlewagon” – company laptop, workstation/desktop computer, company provisioned mobile phone, Voice-over-IP (VoIP) desk phone, personal mobile phone, and a couple of tablet computers of varying sizes and use-cases. (more…)

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Disaster Planning Essentials For A Small Business Network

Disaster recovery planning

The 10 Disaster Planning Essentials For A Small Business Network

If your data is important to your business and you cannot afford to have your operations halted for days – even weeks – due to data loss or corruption, then you need to have a disaster recovery plan in place.

A disaster can happen at any time on any day and is likely to occur at the most inconvenient time. If you aren’t already prepared, you run the risk of having the disaster coming before you have in place a plan to handle it.

We have outlined 10 things you should have in place to make sure your business or organization could be back up and running again in the event of a disaster.

1. Have a written disaster recovery plan

As simple as it may sound, just thinking through in ADVANCE what needs to happen if, say, your business server computer has a meltdown or a natural disaster wipes out your office, will go a long way in getting things back up and running, fast. At a minimum, the plan should contain details on what disaster could happen and a step-by-step process of what to do, who should do it and how. Also include contact information for various providers and username and password information for various key web sites.

Writing this plan will also allow you to think about what you need to budget for backup, maintenance and disaster recovery. If you can’t afford to have your network down for more than a few hours, then you need a plan that can get you back up and running within that time frame. You may want the ability to virtualize your server, allowing the office to run off of the virtualized server while the real server is repaired. (more…)

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Survive Cyber Attacks With A Backup And Disaster Recovery Plan

data backup and recovery cloud services

There’s no way to predict the future, and Murphy’s Law tells us that anything that can go wrong will go wrong. If you and your business or organization do not have a well-thought out recovery plan, your company’s data is teetering on the edge of a cliff without a safety net.

Having a comprehensive and well thought-out data backup and disaster recovery plan in place when there is data loss can help your organization or business survive malicious cyber attacks like ransomware.

In the last few years, we’ve seen plenty of organizations in the news for suffering huge damage from cyber attacks. And there does not seem to be any pointers that cyber incidents are going to reduce any time soon.

However, while cyber attacks as a cause of downtime have almost doubled as the cause of data loss, the rate at which it continues to cause downtime havoc will depend on improvements made to defensive and responsive measures like having a backup and disaster recovery plan.

What are backup and disaster recovery?

There’s an important distinction between backup and disaster recovery.

Backup is the process of making an extra copy (or multiple copies) of data. You back up data to protect it. You might need to restore backup data if you encounter an accidental deletion, database corruption, or problem with a software upgrade.

Disaster recovery, on the other hand, refers to the plan and processes for quickly reestablishing access to applications, data, and IT resources after an outage. That plan might involve switching over to a redundant set of servers and storage systems until your primary data center is functional again. (more…)

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Protect Your Business From Dangerous Cryptomining Activities

Why Small Organizations Should Be Worried About Illicit Cryptomining Activities

cryptomining activity

There is a scourge currently targeting small businesses and organizations and many are not even aware of it because it does not do anything sensational meant to cause harm. It does not install a virus, send phishing emails, or attempt to kidnap business data for ransom. That scourge is cryptocurrency mining, or simply cryptomining.

What is cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency is a form of digital currency that can be used in exchange for goods, services, and even real money, similar to other currencies. However, unlike other currencies, cryptocurrency operates independently of a central bank and uses encryption techniques and blockchain technology to secure and verify transactions.

To quote Malwarebytes, “Two words—“cryptography” and “currency”—combine to form “cryptocurrency,” which is electronic money, based on the principles of complex mathematical encryption. All cryptocurrencies exist as encrypted decentralized monetary units, freely transferable between network participants.” Or put more simply, cryptocurrency is electricity converted into lines of code, which have a real monetary value.  (See a detailed article by Malwarebytes on this topic here).

While Cryptocurrency may be in its infancy, its popularity continues to increase, some would say, exponentially. You may have heard of terms like Bitcoin, Litecoin, Monero, Ethereum, Ripple etc. These are just a few types of the cryptocurrencies currently available. (more…)

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How To Protect Online Data Privacy Using Enhanced Tools

Mobile device showing the various tools of data privacy attacks

In the first place, and speaking of data privacy, have you ever wondered why some online ads you see are targeted to your tastes and interests? Or how websites remember your preferences from visit-to-visit or device-to-device?

The answer may be in the “web tracking cookies” installed on your computer when you visit a website, and other online tracking methods like:

  • Device fingerprinting where information is collected about your device for the purpose of identification,
  • Cross-device tracking technology which enables the tracking of users across multiple devices such as smartphones, television sets, smart TVs, and personal computer, and
  • Cross-site tracking where companies collect data on where you’ve been and what you’ve done across multiple websites.

What is a web tracker?

A web tracker is a small computer program (called script) placed by a website on your computer and is designed to collect information about your preferences and who you are as you interact with the site. Sometimes this script is placed purposefully by the website you’re on, other times a script may be from a website you’ve never visited. (more…)

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How Software Vendors Encourage The Use Of Insecure Legacy Applications

QuickBooks "Internet Explorer is turned off" Error Message

Generally speaking, it is a common practice among IT professionals to associate bad user experience and clunky User Interfaces with legacy applications, and we bemoan the reluctance of users to use new and modern applications “that are right there.”

As a matter of fact, while we very often lament the refusal of technology users to wean themselves away from using legacy or outdated applications, the reality could be that sometimes, users have no choice in the matter: use legacy apps, or productivity comes to a screeching halt.

What Is A Legacy Application?

A legacy application (legacy app) is a software program that is outdated or obsolete. Although a legacy app still works, it may be unstable because of compatibility issues with current operating systems (OSes), browsers and information technology (IT) infrastructures. – – Definition from TechTarget

For example, at the start of 2016, Microsoft ended support for all versions of Internet Explorer (IE) prior to version 11. Users still browsing with older versions like IE 6 could continue to do so, but website pages were no longer going to be coded to be compatible, and any bugs or errors within the Internet Explorer program will not receive attention from Microsoft. (more…)

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