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Directive Blogs

Directive has been serving the Oneonta area since 1993, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Apple Users Hit with Rare Cyberattack: What Can We Learn?

On Wednesday, April 10, 2024, Apple deemed it necessary to send a rare alert to certain users via email, spread out across 92 nations. As Apple’s website states, these threat notifications “are designed to inform and assist users who may have been individually targeted by mercenary spyware attacks.” Let’s review these attacks so we all understand this threat better.

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These Modern Technology Documentaries Bring Interesting Ideas to a Broader Audience

One of the best things about the move towards streaming in media is that since people love watching real-life stories, studios have committed to creating documentary content that provides interesting perspectives. Many people don’t have a comprehensive understanding of technology, especially as it relates to real-world situations, so dramatized documentaries can be a good source of information. Today, we’re going to go through three riveting technology documentaries that are available on streaming services.

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How to Approach an Office Move with Your Technology in Mind

One of the biggest signs that your business is doing well is that it is growing. When it starts to grow, you might notice that your office suddenly feels a little cramped. While moving an office can be stressful, it is often necessary to ensure that your company can continue to flourish. From an IT perspective, it can be even more challenging.

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Downloading and Installing APK Files Could Put Your Business at Risk

Your Android smartphone is a computer in and of itself; as such, it runs with an operating system installed. You install programs on your smartphone the same way you install them on your computer, although the process is more complicated. Today, we want to explain the types of files that the Android operating system uses to install apps on your phone, as well as why it might be a good idea to let the Google Play Store do the hard work for you, in terms of locating and installing apps.

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Tip of the Week: Three Steps to Policing Your IT Policies

Small businesses are presented with the challenging prospect of monitoring and policing various IT-related policies that you might have for your network infrastructure and workplace technology use. The difficulty of this notion does little to lessen its importance, however. You need to take action to protect your assets, data, and reputation from the countless threats out there, and ensuring that your employees are properly using technology is paramount to this endeavor.

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Properly Cleaning a Laptop

It is important to keep modern computers clean, and laptops are no exception. However, a laptop's different form factor makes cleaning it much different from cleaning a traditional desktop computer.

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Ransomware is Only Getting Worse in 2024

Since it was first documented in 1989, ransomware has only become far more severe, ruthless, and, most of all, prevalent. Let’s review some important statistics to remember if you are to understand ransomware and, even more importantly, avoid its impact on your business.

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Automating Management Tasks Can Keep You Ahead of IT Problems

In business technology, automation reigns supreme, especially for tedious tasks that offer little to the individual performing them. Remote management epitomizes such tasks, and strategic automation can greatly enhance organizational productivity. Let’s examine how automation can help you stay proactive. 

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How an MSP Can Aid in IT Project Management

It’s always an exciting time when you commit to a new IT project that promises to change your organization for the better. Of course, the exciting stuff is what comes after the implementation process—a process that can range from easy-as-pie to incredibly complex and stressful, depending on the expertise your organization employs.

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Your Users Are Likely Your Biggest Security Threat, But You Can Fix That

Believe it or not, if you were to rank your business’ greatest threats, risk factors, and vulnerabilities, your users would most likely belong somewhere toward the top. Human error is a big challenge to your security simply because cybercriminals understand that your employees are, in fact, human and will, in fact, make mistakes.

Let’s explore how cyberattacks exploit this tendency and how you can better protect your business from the ramifications.

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Why We Approach Tech Support with Empathy for the User

Among IT professionals, an acronym is sometimes used when discussing certain issues and challenges: “PEBKAC,” or Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair. In other words, user error. 

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Tip of the Week: 4 Ways to Save Money on Your IT Solutions

Are you paying attention to where you spend your IT dollars and whether or not you are making the most of your budget? It’s important to assess your needs before making any major technological purchase, including the goals, challenges, and pain points you are trying to solve. With the right approach, you can increase the value you get out of your IT—particularly with the following strategies.

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4 Essential Cybersecurity Mistakes You Can't Afford to Make

When considering your company’s cybersecurity, it is important not to lose sight of the forest for the trees… or, in other words, not to forget the basics around which the rest of your protections are built.

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Improving Collaboration Can Pay Big Dividends

Effective teamwork is indispensable for business success. Collaboration stands out as an extremely important consideration, yet devising a strategy that expedites project completion and enhances service delivery poses challenges. This week, we get into modern collaboration practices and how technology can help you improve collaboration.

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The Problem With Devaluing Employees

Running a business can be tough and result in a lot of frustration from staff, management, and customers. Sometimes that frustration can boil over and cause consternation among the core elements that need to function for a business to be successful. This week, let’s look at an issue that can really hurt your business.

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Explaining Shift Shock: Why Younger Employees Leave Good Jobs

You might have noticed that some of your younger workers are leaving your business much earlier than you might expect them to. This could be because of a phenomenon called “shift shock,” which examines employee engagement and satisfaction. Let’s consider how shift shock could potentially harm your business.

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Which Leadership Style Do You Tend to Use in Your Business?

Leadership can take many forms. As a leader in your own company, it can pay to understand what form of leadership you tend to express when working with your team. Let’s review some leadership styles to see if anything resonates.

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Tip of the Week: 6 Keyboard Shortcuts to Make Life Easier

Keyboard shortcuts are undeniably useful—to the point that some are almost ubiquitous. However, there are a lot that aren’t, and they are just about as useful. We wanted to introduce you to these shortcuts so you can incorporate them into your workflows.

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3 Huge Benefits of Adding Help Desk Support to Your Staff

Do you have employees who struggle with their technology? Chances are that there will always be individuals who are not as proficient with it as you might expect, and without a dedicated IT resource to ask for assistance, they might get frustrated and disengage with their work. You need to provide the right support to your employees, and you’re in luck; we have just the right solution to your problems: a help desk!

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Why You Need to Keep Track of Your IT Infrastructure

When taking stock of your business assets, technology is particularly critical to pay attention to. Let’s discuss why this is and what you must do to manage it properly.

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Big Tech is Bigger Than You Realize

As technology seeps into every part of everyday life, the market for technology has exploded. This has led to technology companies growing to be massive and seemingly uncontrollable entities. Let’s take a look at big tech and its effect on society. 

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What Makes Outsourcing IT So Valuable for SMBs?

Technology has ingrained itself into just about every facet of modern life, particularly in the business world where every competitive edge makes a difference. Many small and medium-sized businesses simply don’t have the staff on-hand to manage and maintain their technology solutions, instead opting to outsource this important responsibility to managed service providers (MSPs).

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Three Ways We Offer Cost-Effective IT Solutions

The entire premise of managed IT services is that they can save your business money, but in what specific ways does working with us make your budget more predictable? It’s really quite simple, and it encompasses three primary pillars: an established level of service, proactive maintenance and management, and the reliability and access to expertise that might otherwise put a stopper on your business’ potential.

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Three of the Biggest Security Solutions You Might Not Be Using

Your typical IT professional might suggest some common methods of network security like implementing better preventative measures, like firewalls and antivirus. However, there is more that goes into network security—far more. If you’re not careful, you could accidentally miss some of these three security solutions and expose your business to potential threats. But we’re not about to let that happen!

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5 Key Elements to A Successful Marketing Strategy

A marketing strategy is the building block of a marketing plan. It lays out a clear, well-defined big picture plan to attract customers to your business by specifying long-term objectives, actions to be taken, and marketing tactics used to achieve marketing goals. B2B marketers often struggle to develop successful marketing strategies. 40% of the least effective marketers have no defined marketing strategy, and 56% of B2B marketers in the United States find it difficult to build their brand through the strategies they create.

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3 Types of Regulations Your Business Should Be Aware Of

Your business is likely subject to certain compliance laws and regulations depending on the type of data you collect from your clients or customers. Today, we want to emphasize the importance of your business considering regulation and compliance when managing its data and IT resources, as without doing so, you run considerable risk.

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Implement These Collaboration Tools for Your Growing SMB

Collaboration is a key component of any business, and in today’s remote and hybrid work environment, it’s even more important than ever. Technology can facilitate collaboration in amazing ways, particularly for growing businesses that are quickly outgrowing their current accommodations.

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3 Success Metrics for Your Business Technology

Your business’ data holds incredible potential for helping you improve operations, but only when it is leveraged properly. To this end, you have to identify specific metrics that you are working toward and establish how these metrics are helping you make strides forward. IT offers plenty of metrics to help you make better decisions about operational efficiency.

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What to Know About Your Business’ Wireless Router

The modern workplace wouldn’t exist as it does without the advent of wireless Internet or Wi-Fi. Understanding how your wireless router works can be incredibly helpful for any business owner, and it can help you get even more out of your wireless connection. Today, we want to share some information about wireless routers that can help you use them more effectively.

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How to Scale a Growing Business (Using Technology to Your Advantage)

If you could generate more revenue without spending more, wouldn’t you?

If you share most people's goals and aspirations, the answer is a resounding and enthusiastic “yes.” Scaling a business is an important element of continued success—provided it is carried out correctly. Let’s discuss how you can help ensure your success, partly by implementing the right technology.

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With Preventative IT, You Save Tons of Capital

As a small business, we’re sure you want to improve your profit margin so that you can offer more exciting and innovative services or products. One way that many businesses bleed capital is through their IT expenses. While it might make sense on paper to address technology challenges only when they present themselves, the truth is the exact opposite.

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VoIP Presents Some Intriguing Opportunities

A business telephone system has picked up some pretty costly requirements over the past several years. Not only does your business need to have a clear and concise calling system internally, it needs to incorporate video conferencing and remote communications. This can get pretty costly if you don’t have the right technology in place. That right technology is VoIP and it can save your business money and present options that allow your employees seamless communication capabilities.

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You Deserve IT Services Shaped to Your Needs

For any business to succeed, it needs to exhibit some degree of empathy toward its audience. Otherwise, the services and products they offer will be less likely to meet the priorities and needs that its targets are experiencing.

As a managed service provider, this is perhaps most true of us, as our services revolve around predicting the needs of our clientele and resolving them… ideally, before the client even realizes they have a need to fulfill.

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What to Do (and Not Do) with Your Smartphone

It’s not hyperbole to suggest that many people in business these days prefer digital communication over the alternative. Smartphones have evolved over time and adapted to this need. That said, using a smartphone to communicate does still have its fair share of unwritten rules to follow. Let’s discuss some of the dos and don’ts of smartphones.

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3 IT Metrics to Pay Attention To

Any business can benefit from data and use it to improve its operations. This is especially the case where information technology is involved. By collecting the right metrics, you can better evaluate your business IT’s performance and identify areas for improvement.

Let’s review what some of these metrics should be.

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XLoader Android Malware Runs in the Background and Steals Your Data

Mobile malware isn’t common, but it’s growing increasingly more so. You may have heard of a malware called XLoader, which has been used to victimize people in over seven countries. This mobile threat has seen various iterations over the past several years, but you should be especially concerned these days.

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What Kind of Mindset Should a Remote Worker Have?

Mindset is important regardless of what someone is doing, but it plays an especially important part in the workplace. This only becomes more true when that workplace is distributed, and work is actually done in the worker’s home.

Let’s go into the kind of perspective you want to encourage in your team as they utilize remote work.

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Public, Private, or Hybrid? Choosing the Best Cloud Solution for Your SMB

The cloud is a remarkable innovation that businesses of all industries and sizes can utilize to scale growth and operations. How you use the cloud, though, will change depending on your company's specific pain points and requirements. How can you invest in a cloud solution that ticks all your boxes? It starts with assessing whether you want to utilize a public, private, or hybrid cloud infrastructure.

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Did You Know? Big Tech Companies Don’t Care About Your Data Privacy

How important do you consider security for your personal and private data on your web-connected accounts? If you don’t think about it often, you should be; countless entities out there—including major enterprises and providers you trust—do not respect your data privacy and security. Let’s discuss how some large companies take advantage of your data and some of the questions you should consider when trusting these companies with your data.

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Make Sure You Share These Cybersecurity Tips with Everyone You Know

Cybersecurity is crucial for everyone to focus on, both in the professional environment and in their personal lives. That’s why I wanted to put together a list of cybersecurity practices you should encourage your team to follow when they aren’t in the office or working remotely, when their time is theirs. 

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Here are the Basics of the 3-2-1 Backup Rule

The 3-2-1 rule is a pretty standard reference for data backup and disaster recovery, but what does this rule actually entail? Today, we want to explain perhaps the most important concept to prolonging the life of your business, even in the face of difficult and trying circumstances.

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Three of the Most Helpful SaaS Applications Out There

Software is an important part of any business’ toolset, and for small businesses, Software as a Service, or SaaS, is the most cost-effective way to take advantage of it. The most profitable companies in the world run on SaaS, and so too can your business. Let’s go over some of the most powerful solutions your organization can implement in the realm of software and how they can benefit your success.

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Invest in Your Business’ Future with Security Best Practices

Nowadays, it is crucial that you make security a top priority. With the right approach, it not only saves you massive headaches, but also a considerable amount of capital—particularly if you leverage the appropriate solutions for SMBs. As a managed service provider, we can ensure that you implement the appropriate IT solutions to maximize the return on your security investment.

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Zen and the Art of Proactive IT Management

If you spend a little time getting to know any of the Chase family, you’ll know we love our motorcycles. Owning a motorcycle isn’t just about purchasing an expensive piece of equipment and riding it around town; it’s a hobby that consumes your time (and your wallet). In many ways, it’s similar to running a business.

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Tip of the Week: Making Your Network VoIP-Friendly

We could go on and on about the benefits of using Voice over Internet Protocol (also known as VoIP) for your business telephone needs. However, it is important that you do everything you can to prepare your network for this kind of utilization. Let’s review a few tips to help make sure your network is properly optimized for VoIP.

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3 Tips for More Effective Data Backup and Disaster Recovery

Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) are incredibly important elements of any successful business, as without them, you’re just one disaster away from a world-shattering wake-up call. We take a strategic approach to data backup and disaster recovery that considers your daily data backup needs while recognizing its long-term benefits. Let’s discuss how you can ensure that your business can use BDR to survive any potential threat the world throws at it.

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The NFL Has Seen a Significant Technical Leap Forward in Recent Years

Did you watch the big game this year? Chances are that if you did, you got to witness all of the spectacles that the event had to offer, including a lot of technology that enriched the experience, whether you realize it or not. The National Football League has implemented emerging technologies that have helped solve persistent challenges over the years. Let’s explore some of these technologies.

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How to Convert and Edit a PDF File

PDF, which stands for Portable Document Format, is a type of file that business professionals are all too familiar with. While most are aware of and appreciative of this file type, they likely are not aware of some of the more fun and useful features afforded to them. Let’s explore just what PDFs are capable of, including how to make and edit them.

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How to Tell Your IT is Performing as Expected

One of the most important considerations that a business that relies on technology needs to make is how efficiently its technology works. Let’s discuss some ways to measure this benchmark and ensure that it is optimized to meet your business needs.

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Tip of the Week: Keep Your Tech Clean and Efficient

From smartphones to laptops and everything in between, our devices are constantly exposed to dirt, dust, and germs. Keeping your technology clean ensures a longer lifespan for your devices and promotes a user’s health. Today, we'll explore four practical tips to help you keep your technology clean and functioning at its best.

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The Best Practices of Video Conferencing

Video conferencing has really taken off in recent years, due in no small part to the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced remote work on most businesses worldwide. However, businesses see the benefits of video conferencing, and it has now cemented itself as a go-to communications solution for all businesses. Today, we want to discuss how to make virtual meetings and video conferencing more productive and more engaging.

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How to Get Started Prepping for a New VoIP Solution

With communication rising to the top of many businesses’ priorities list, it’s no wonder that Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, is one of the most powerful ways to revitalize your company’s communications infrastructure. If you’re still using your old traditional telephony solution, buckle up because you’re about to find out how to ditch it for good.

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World Backup Day Promotes Solid Data Backup Practices

Annually, on March 31st, World Backup Day serves as a dedicated reminder to highlight the pivotal role of regular data backups in ensuring the seamless flow of information. While this awareness day effectively emphasizes a foundational best practice, we strongly advocate for an ongoing commitment to the continuous maintenance and safeguarding of backups, extending well beyond the confines of a single day.

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Explaining Three Pieces of Basic Networking Equipment

Whether you know how it works or not, your business has an internal network that connects all of its computing infrastructure and resources. Today, we want to take a moment to demystify some of the common networking equipment you might have on-premises and what it all does to contribute to your business’ continued success.

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Why You Need to Use a Surge Protector, Not a Power Strip

It’s easy to look at a power strip and a surge protector and question if there’s anything that actually makes them different. After all, they both give you extra plugs, right?

Yes, but there’s more to it than just that. Let’s review some of the important differences between the two that make one a far better choice for your business’ power delivery needs.

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6 Essential Tools to Bring Marketing Back to Your Website

Your website is the roadway for all digital information about your company’s services, products and vision. Leveraging your website to generate and convert leads is pivotal in today's digital landscape. In this article we will discuss six marketing tools that, when utilized adeptly, can guide potential customers directly to your digital doorstep.

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Don’t Want to Fully Outsource? Consider Co-Managed IT

SMBs need to be able to navigate the complexities of IT, whether it’s with a completely outsourced IT department or an in-house team of technicians. However, if you are thinking of technology management in this black-and-white way, you are eliminating the potential for enormous benefit through the use of co-managed IT.

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Your Business Relies on Its Technology, So Make the Most of It

Information technology—IT—is a necessity for the vast majority of modern businesses to function. For the sake of these businesses and their operations, it pays to optimize this IT by any means available.

Let’s go over the benefits that a relationship with a managed service provider gives businesses, particularly regarding the overall efficiency these businesses see as a result.

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The Best Way to Protect Your Business’ Reputation is to Protect Your Data

SMBs tend to rely on their longstanding clients to bring in the majority of their revenue, so what happens when clients suddenly cannot trust your business’ reputation? Look no further than if you were to suffer from a cyberattack for an answer. It turns out that being careless with your clients’ data is one of the best ways to sink your reputation.

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Is Foldable Technology Worth the Investment?

Foldable displays are an emerging trend in the technology industry, as they are quite unique in their form factor and capabilities. What is the real value of this tech, though? Who is it actually being marketed to, and what for? Let’s dive in.

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You Have to Prioritize IT Training

For the IT administrator and the small business owner, it can be a bewildering experience when your company comes under siege from employee-induced cyberthreats; especially if you, like many other companies, have started prioritizing security training. Even if the threat is thwarted early and the effect on the business is negligible, it is important that you trust the people who have access to your organization’s digital resources. Let’s look at some of the reasons some of your staff take cybersecurity initiatives worse than others. 

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What Types of Data Do You Need to Pay Attention To

Small businesses, like any other organization, need to protect various types of data to ensure the security and privacy of their operations. The specific data that needs protection may vary depending on the nature of the business, industry regulations, and the types of transactions or customer interactions. Today, we thought we would go through some common data types that small businesses typically need to protect.

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What are Digital Twins, and How Can Businesses Use Them?

A digital twin could arguably be seen as a somewhat niche technological innovation. Regardless, they are an invaluable resource to quite a few industries that help the businesses that use them optimize their processes. Let’s go over what a digital twin is, and how it helps a few different business types meet their needs.

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Enough Floundering: Here’s a No-Nonsense Guide to Implementing New Technology Solutions

Businesses will often go into the process of self-improvement with unrealistic expectations for how much they can significantly improve their functionality. This simply is not true, and sometimes business owners need to realize that real change—the kind that yields real results—takes time. Thankfully, there are some actionable steps you can take to ensure that your business is moving in the right direction.

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Small Businesses Need to Get the Right Tech to Open Up Opportunities

Technology can bring a lot of value for businesses, but sometimes it can be difficult to nail down exactly what can make a business run optimally. There are a lot of options, but all that means is that there are a lot of things that can potentially go wrong. Let’s take a look at some of the technology that small businesses are using to support the new workplace and create better opportunities. 

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3 Ways Modern Software Can Make Running a Business Easier

The entire point of modern technology is to make things easier. Businesses don’t invest in computers and software simply to throw away money—technology exists to streamline operations and help you get more done in less time.

Let’s look at some of the standard technologies your business should consider to gain more value out of your technology.

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Avoiding Tech Neck

The strain on people’s bodies isn’t always taken seriously when someone works at a computer. Still, many official studies suggest that desk jobs can have a radical and rather negative effect on the health of individuals. One common ailment is what is called “tech neck.” Tech neck is a term that describes neck pain and damage stemming from looking down at computers or mobile devices for prolonged periods. To avoid tech neck, you can follow these helpful tips.

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Don’t Share Sensitive Data in Emails

All it takes is one oversight to potentially undo any benefits your cybersecurity protections and other best practices may deliver. For instance, even if you have things like multifactor authentication in place, a phishing scam or even some malware varieties could potentially give an attacker access to your email… and all the data your messages contain, just sitting in your inbox.

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Tip of the Week: Docking your Laptop while Keeping it Closed

The laptop is an excellent piece of office equipment due to its portability and its power to meet the needs of most of today’s workforce. When in the office, however, many prefer the much larger screens that are more typical of the traditional desktop. Let’s talk about how you can get the best of both worlds by plugging your laptop into a set of peripherals and using it while it's closed—effectively turning it into a PC’s tower.

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A Key to File Sharing: Following Best Practices

Businesses rely on data. That is no secret. Regarding a file-sharing strategy for a small business, choosing effective and secure strategies is crucial to ensure smooth collaboration and protect sensitive information. Here are some best practices for small business file sharing.

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Smartphones Are Great, As Long as You Avoid These Negative Side Effects

For all the good smartphones have brought about, some serious problems have arisen regarding their widespread use. In fact, they can be attributed to a lot of the damaging mental health side effects that people around the world are battling daily. Here are some of them.

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How to Handle Your Risk Mitigation Strategies

It’s an unfortunate fact that all businesses will inherently face some threats during their operations. That’s inescapable. From cyberattacks to natural disasters to good, old-fashioned accidents, you’re liable to face no small risk. This risk makes a process known as risk mitigation so critical for all businesses to undergo with some regularity.

Let’s review a few aspects of creating and maintaining a dependable risk mitigation strategy.

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Unfortunately, Scams Are Commonplace

The constant fear of falling victim to scams has become a harsh reality and is far from ideal. However, the good news is that there is always time to acquire the skills needed to avoid such scams. Let's explore ways to enhance awareness regarding the challenges posed by scams, not only in a business context but also in everyday life.

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Three Innovative Tools Every Small Business Should Consider

There are rules for doing business that most people understand. That status quo has been around for a long, long time, but as technology advances, it does more than connect parts that weren’t connected before; it can break down some of the old notions about the ways businesses are run and give people who think outside the box a leg up going forward. Let’s look at three ways business leaders are innovating how they do business.

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10 Things to Ask Your IT Consultant About In 2024

As technology continues to evolve at a rapid pace, businesses need to stay ahead of the curve. That’s where an IT consultant comes in. Whoever is currently managing your IT and providing technical support should have a pretty good idea of how your business works, and they should be able to help you plan and implement new technologies that will help you remain competitive in this always-changing landscape.

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Oversharing on Social Media Can Have Grave Effects

Maintaining data security is an important consideration, and most people try to do what they must to secure their personal data. They verify emails; they roll out antivirus and antimalware; they take vigilant steps to avoid the myriad of threats and active attacks we all deal with from one day to the next. 

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You Need to Have a Business Continuity Plan for Your SMB

Business technology is known to be remarkably finicky, particularly if you do not have the requisite knowledge to manage and maintain it. After all, there is a reason why you hire an IT department or a managed service provider to handle this role. What happens if your technology fails, though? Do you have a plan in place? What does a plan like this even look like, anyway? Let’s dig into the details.

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These Tech Solutions Can Eliminate Some Stress in the Workplace

Businesses have a lot of stressful things going on at any given moment, especially when timelines and deadlines are considered. You have projects that you need to complete for your customers and employees who need to be paid on time, and you would be hard-pressed to find a situation for your organization that isn’t under some sort of time crunch. How can you use technology to make sure that these timelines are met? Let’s go over some solutions.

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Smart Chips Make Google Docs and Sheets Smarter

Last week, we shared a blog referencing “smart chips” that could help augment a Google Doc. We wanted to dive a little deeper into the topic of smart chips so you could apply them to your own Google Docs and Sheets.

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How to Transition to or Establish a New Office Location

It’s always exciting when you can expand your business’ influence with a new location, but this excitement brings with it all kinds of complications. There’s always something, whether it’s the technology for the new location or the logistics surrounding the opening. Let’s look at how you can make sure that technology is not the thing that holds your business back from opening a new location.

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Six of the Worst Data Breaches of 2023

In this blog, we do our best to give people the knowledge they need to protect themselves and their organizations while operating online. With all the digital tools that we all have come to rely on, it’s important to understand the result of a data breach on organizations and their customers. In today’s blog, we go through six of the most devastating data breaches that happened in 2023. 

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Your SEO Reports Aren’t Everything

Search engine optimization can be a relatively simple concept while simultaneously being complex and nuanced. On the surface, Google advises us to focus on having a quality website and content to match, while behind the scenes, hundreds of secret metrics are weighed and balanced to deliver your ranking. Then there are the experts who have purportedly cracked the code or figured out the “one easy fix that brings instant success.”

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Tip of the Week: Taking a Break from Social Media

In the relatively short time it has been around, social media has fully ingrained itself into our lives, personally, professionally, and socially. While there are considerable benefits to be had in all of these areas, it is also undeniable that social media can easily become overwhelming and negatively impact us. For this reason, occasionally taking a break from social media isn’t a bad idea. Let’s go over a few ways to make this break as successful and effective as possible.

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Tip of the Week: How to Use Google Docs to Draft Google Calendar Events

One of the nice things about software platforms is how well the applications within them interact with one another. Take, for instance, the applications contained within Google Workspace.

Because of the interconnected nature of the Google Workspace platform, there’s a lot that the different programs can do in tandem. As an example, let’s consider how the word-processing application Google Docs can be used to generate events in the associated account’s Google Calendar.

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How Your Business Can Adapt to Its Evolving Technological Needs

As conditions within your business change, it’s likely that your plans might need to change before their end results come to fruition. The decisions you made last fiscal year, or even last quarter, might no longer be relevant due to the rapid pace of evolution that happens with business technology. Let’s go over how you can get the appropriate technology solutions for your business without falling behind.

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How to Make Templates for Google Docs

Templates are a handy feature that popular word processing platforms, like Google Docs, offer to help users create specific types of documents. While there are plenty of prebuilt templates available, there’s always the possibility that you have a need that isn’t filled by one of them.

In these cases, you always have the option to build your own. Let’s go over how, and discuss some of the elements and options that your custom Google Docs templates can support.

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4 Practical Uses for Blockchain Technology

With the blockchain growing more popular as a technology, we thought it would be good to discuss how it works and why you should be aware of it. The zeitgeist often portrays it as a nefarious tool used by cryptocurrency and scams, but at its core, it is far from this; in fact, the applications of such a decentralized and transparent technology make it ideal for certain tasks. Let’s explore them.

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Understanding URLs Can Help You Avoid Being Hacked

We often advise people to steer clear of clicking on suspicious links, but distinguishing between a legitimate URL and a dubious one has become increasingly challenging. Not only have malicious tactics evolved to the point where everyone has to stay on top of their game to not be fooled, these threats are almost pervasive so they are coming at people from all types of directions. We thought we would focus on a single punctuation mark that can make all the difference in whether a link is legitimately safe or potentially dangerous.

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Tip of the Week: How to Fight Productivity Paranoia in Employees

Back in 2022, Microsoft coined the term “productivity paranoia,” referring to the fears that many managers have that remote workers aren’t working to their full productivity. However, as remote and hybrid work has continued for many companies, a different form has emerged: the feeling a worker has that they have to prove they are still productive while working from home.

Here are some tips to share with your team, so they can use them to avoid these feelings.

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Business Communication’s Innovation is Driving Business Forward

For the small business, mastering advanced communication tools and strategies is not just a luxury—it's a necessity. Today, we’ll take a look at advanced small business communications, discussing the latest technologies, strategies, and best practices that can elevate your business to new heights.

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6 Examples of Phishing Attacks Area Businesses Need to Prepare For

Phishing is one of the most prevalent forms of cyberattacks out there today, taking many forms and affecting everyone from individuals to entire organizations. Any business operating today needs to be aware of the numerous shapes that phishing can take. 

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AI Was the Hot Tech of 2023, But in 2024 It’s the Next Big Security Threat

2023 was definitely the year that AI became a household name. We’ve barely seen what artificial intelligence is capable of, and while industries are still coming up with more ways to use the technology, we’ve already seen countless examples of how people want to take advantage of AI for less savory purposes. 2024 is already shaping up to be the year that businesses need to protect themselves from AI-generated cybersecurity threats. Let’s take a look at everything you need to know as a business owner.

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AI and Work in 2023 and Beyond: A Retrospective

2023 was a banner year for artificial intelligence, with the technology exploding into the mainstream and being more accessible by the public than ever before. Let’s explore how what we’ve seen in the past year in terms of AI has changed things for workers and workplaces everywhere.

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What You Need to Look for in a Cyber Insurance Policy

Perhaps predictably, the word “insure” has roots that tie it closely to “ensure,” as it is meant to ensure a level of security after some form of loss. Nowadays, that loss often pertains to data, making cyber insurance an extremely valuable investment for the modern business to make.

However, in order to obtain this kind of insurance, businesses commonly need to meet some basic requirements. Let’s go over some of these requirements now.

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Is Free Antivirus Good Enough?

If you are old enough to remember when antivirus (like most computer software) came in a great big textbook-sized box at the store, then you probably remember a time when that was the only protection you really needed.

Today, there are countless free versions of antivirus out there. Let’s talk about how much protection these actually bring, and when and where they might be a good fit.

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Four Ways Your Business Can Benefit from the Cloud This Year

Through cloud-based technology, your business can change the way it operates in countless different ways, all of which can benefit you in the long run. If you haven’t yet considered cloud-based solutions for infrastructure, then you could be missing out on some of the greatest innovations of the past decade. Here are some ways your business can start to leverage the cloud to its advantage.

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Two Technology Trends that Can Revolutionize Your SMB

Small businesses seemingly always need to take a long look at the way they do things because they need to be as efficient as possible to carve out a market share. This often means using technology to make everything work. There are many different types of technologies that can help any SMB build more efficient operations, but the two we will outline in today’s blog, are two technologies that are probably doing the most to help SMBs improve. 

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Think Before You Scan That QR Code; It Could Be Dangerous

Businesses have embraced QR codes as a convenient means of sharing information with clients and customers. Unfortunately, this convenience is also enjoyed by cybercriminals who have decided to use QR codes for their own ends. QR code-based scams against businesses are on the rise, which is precisely why it is so important for organizations of all sizes to appreciate the risks that QR codes can present and know what they need to do to protect themselves.

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Are You a Tech Support Roadblock?

This goes out to all the business owners, managers, department heads, and other leaders in the workplace who have to field user complaints and issues.

Being in this position can be hard, because you often have to say no. No, we can’t change the timeline or increase the budget for this project. No, we can’t do XYZ that way because it would break compliance. No, we can’t get new hardware/software in until we get it approved in the budget. Repeat ad nauseam.

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How to Set Business Resolutions You’ll Be Motivated to Keep

Happy New Year! It’s officially that time when we all make resolutions meant to help improve ourselves, so why not include your business? Better yet, why not make business resolutions that you’re more likely to keep?

Let’s explore some of the ways that you can design your business’ resolutions to maximize the likelihood that you’ll keep them and benefit from them in the long term.

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