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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.

Retaining Workers with Technology

The right technology can be a catalyst for change. While the right kind of change can be enough to drive innovation and push the limits of your business, the wrong kind of change--namely, employee turnover--can put a halt to productivity and force you to trace your steps back down the old, familiar path of onboarding and training. How can you use technology to retain top talent and reinforce the right message amongst your employees?

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7 Tips to Take Control of Your PII

It is remarkable how much trust people have in Internet-based companies. Not just that they will fulfill the expectations placed on them, but that people routinely provide extremely sensitive information to these companies without thinking for a second about what they do with it. We will take a look at data collection practices, what Internet companies want with that data, and how millions of people every year become victims because they entrust their PII (Personally Identifiable Information) to corporations that promptly lose it.

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How to Get the Action You’re Looking For, From Your Calls to Action

A call to action, CTA, is a clear instruction designed to provoke an immediate response. Whether you say something like “call now” or “find out more”, you’re attempting to convince your audience to delve further into your site or services, without being forceful or demanding. You don’t want your audience to feel like you’re telling them what to do, but rather offering suggestions and assistance to better themselves. After all, when faced with “you’re not doing this correctly so you need to click here now” or “for more information on how to increase your website traffic, click here”, which are you more likely to choose?

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Tip of the Week: How to Calculate the ROI of Anything

All businesses are part of their respective markets, and depending on that market, the business will implement technology solutions designed to help them best cater to their business. However, you should only implement technology that can yield a satisfactory return on investment, or ROI. We’re here to help you get the most return on your investment as possible.

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Tip of the Week: New Password Recommendations by NIST

Passwords are always a major pain point for businesses, but in some industries, their importance is emphasized more than others. In particular, government-based organizations need to be prepared to keep more secure passwords. While we understand that not all organizations are government-based, there’s something to be said about proper password practices that we can all learn something from.

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Are You Missing Your Target?

Marketing is incredibly important for your business’ success, but only if your marketing is reaching your target audience. How do you do this? You need to relate to your clients and potential clients. It’s like when you’re looking for a new sitter for your child, you don’t pick the first person you talk to and your clients aren’t going to just pick you because they see you first. You’re going to interview and talk to the potential sitters and see which seems like the best fit for your child - who likes to go outside and play, who knows CPR and actually gets along with your child. The same thing goes for your clients and potential clients - they want to make sure you value the same things they do and that you care about them.

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3 Data Recovery Issues to Consider

Even with a data recovery strategy, you can’t expect all problems related to data continuity to be resolved simply by having a strategy in place. Take a moment to ask yourself if you have the right strategy for your business’ needs. Below you will find several considerations to keep in mind when planning your data backup system, as well as how to make it happen.

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Problems Persist in Private Cloud Implementation

Private cloud computing is on the rise, and it’s for a good reason. Data security is a major problem for countless businesses out there, and in the wake of growing concerns over privacy and security threats, it has urged organizations to take it more seriously than ever before. Putting together a comprehensive private cloud system has its fair share of challenges, but if done properly, it can solve the data security problem as well.

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A.I. Growth and Data Analysis

If machine learning is one of those technologies that you keep hearing about, but don’t quite know exactly what it is, you aren’t alone. Most people only know that it has something to do with A.I. Some of the most successful businesses in the world are using machine learning, and its artificially intelligent capabilities to improve their offering or effectiveness. Today, we will begin to explain what exactly machine learning is and how it is beginning to work for businesses just like yours.

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CPT: Good Things - Not Just Bad - Come in Threes

There’s a common superstition out there that bad things (e.g., bad luck, misfortune, or even death) come in threes. We’re here to tell you that there are plenty of good things that come in threes...at least when it comes to food.

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How to Be Sure You're Getting the Most Out of Direct Mail

Chances are, you’ve received direct mail marketing, and it may have led you to consider utilizing it as a marketing tactic yourself, but you might have questioned how effective direct mail would be, and how you could possibly track its return on investment. The good news is that (if planned correctly) direct mail can have a significant, measurable influence on your marketing.

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Tip of the Week: Change Your Display in Windows 10

Customizing your display settings is one of the best ways to make Windows 10 feel like your own experience. There are a ton of settings you can change to your specifics. This week’s tip will walk you through how you can change the settings on your displays, whether it’s a new monitor or the old one you’ve been using since the beginning.

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The Key to Drawing In Your Desired Audience: Inbound Marketing

When marketing your business, the general wisdom is that inbound marketing is a good thing to include in your overall strategy. This is because it effectively draws in your most interested audience, in addition to usually being more cost-effective than most outbound avenues. Today, we’ll focus on what your inbound strategy should be based on, as well as a few actions to take as you implement it.

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Powerful Physical Security Options

Data security isn’t the easiest thing in the world to plan for, especially if your organization doesn’t have any dedicated security professionals on-hand. While protecting your data with traditional methods, like passwords, firewalls, and antivirus, is important, what measures are you taking to make sure a thief or hacker isn’t just walking into your office and making off with your technology?

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See a Major Communications Boost Cloud-Hosted VoIP

Voice over Internet Protocol, also known as VoIP, has grown more popular with businesses in recent years, and it’s hard not to see why. The sheer amount of benefits that it provides to businesses--small organizations in particular--make your traditional telephone system look outdated and inefficient. We’ll discuss some of the greatest benefits today.

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The Future of IT; 2019 is The Year Your Business Hires a Managed Service Provider

Chances are that if you are a business owner that has been in business for a decade you’ve seen how emerging technologies have changed the face of business. Technologies like cloud computing have opened up opportunities for many businesses to get the powerful computing infrastructures they need without massive upfront costs. As this trend continues, the IT services has begun to move past core IT management and support and onto providing real solutions for the modern business. Today, we will look at how the Managed Service Provider (MSP) is at the forefront of a data revolution that has no end in sight.

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Prioritize the Protection of Your Google Account

Chances are you have a Google account, whether it’s for business or personal use. It’s more accessible today than ever before and provides a solid way to gain access to several important features and accounts. Considering how much can be done with a Google account, users forget that they can put their security and personal data at risk. Here are some ways that your Google account is at risk, as well as what you can do to fix it.

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Creating Conversions With A Landing Page

Question: What is the purpose of a landing page? The answer: a landing page is designed to achieve a specific marketing goal--usually something along the lines of collecting contact information, driving traffic, or pushing for a purchase. However, before you just throw some text and a form on a page and call it a day, you should know that there is a process to creating an optimized, more effective landing page.

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Tip of the Week: Download the Second Windows 10 Update of 2018 Now

Windows 10 just got a second update for 2018. Some experts think this many major updates to the OS is too many, but when you start to look at the features available through this second update, you may be happy that Microsoft has decided to release it (and re-release it). Today, we’ll take a look at the new update, and a couple of the helpful features that it has rolled out to users.

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Tip of the Week: Password Protecting a Word Document

The funny thing about some documents is how the data written on them can strongly influence how important they are. If, for instance, there were two pieces of paper on a table, there is objectively no difference between the two, and so they are objectively equivalent in value.

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Keep Your Customers Happy With Your Marketing Initiatives!

As any business owner would tell you, a satisfied client or customer tends to be a loyal client or customer. The right marketing initiatives and activities can help to maintain that satisfaction, which is a crucial element in business. In today’s blog, we’ll review why it is so important to nurture your customer/client satisfaction, as well as how to measure it.

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The Top 5 Smartphones For You Heading Into 2019

With the smartphone market losing ground for the first time in its short history, many of the manufacturers you’ve come to know are either non-factors in the current market, or don’t even produce smartphones anymore. With new demand growing every year, new manufacturers such as OnePlus and Xiaomi are primed to fall in line behind Samsung and Apple.

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Why Your Google Account’s Security is So Important

These days, it seems that to have a computer is to have a Google account. If one isn’t used for professional purposes, it is used as a personalized solution - and no wonder. The convenience and accessibility of these accounts alone are compelling, even before one considers the versatility that this account brings with it. Unfortunately, these benefits can be quickly overshadowed by risk if a Google account’s security is overlooked, even if unintentionally.

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How IT Benefits a Small Business’ Growth Potential

When we discuss our service offerings, we understand that it can all seem like a little much, especially to the small business that - up to this point - has never needed all these fancy solutions to operate effectively. However, there are a few considerations that the business this scenario applies to needs to account for. For instance, is it certain that these solutions are unnecessary?

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The 5 Flagships Available Today

Smartphones are amazing and as a result a lot of people have jumped on board. So, when the annual financials came out, it was a minor surprise to see that the smartphone market was in significant decline. There are many reasons for this, but the main one has to be that older devices are holding up great compared to newer devices. This makes consumers less apt to make the substantial investment to get the latest and greatest device.

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How to Use Video on Each Social Network

One of the biggest benefits to using social media in a marketing strategy is the fact that it gives you the opportunity to experiment with different kinds of content--like, for instance, video. Video is a very strong marketing tool to use, but the social media platform will have an influence over what kind of videos are most effective. Today, we’ll explore how to optimize your video strategy for the different social media channels.

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How Can You Find that Lost Smartphone?

One of the major aspects of smartphones is how portable they are. Thanks to them, business professionals can be productive while out of the office, no matter where they are. Unfortunately, this also means that they have more of an opportunity to lose their devices, along with the data they contain. If the device is Android-based, then you can alleviate this trouble thanks to built-in features that can help you find it.

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Tip of the Week: Watch Out for Scammers During the Holidays

Scammers find the holidays to be a wonderful time for stealing from unsuspecting victims. They know that the gift-giving season inspires others to spend a lot of money, which means that sensitive information, like credit card numbers, is up for grabs in bulk. As a consumer yourself, you’ll have to keep an eye out for these scams to make sure that you’re staying as safe as possible this holiday season.

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How to Optimize Your Marketing Choices Through A/B Testing

One of the best things about marketing is that it is a very fluid process, heavily informed by how an audience reacts and responds to an initiative. This means that it is very important that you identify what marketing choices will optimize your impact. The process of A/B testing can help with this.

Here, we’ll discuss A/B testing in the context of email marketing to set a familiar scene for our examples.

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How the Grinch Didn’t Send that Email!

An email’s important,
That much is clear fact -
But you need to stay safe
From an email attack.

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Why You Shouldn't Say “Humbug” to Your Security

The IT guy, Jacob left last month: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. He left without an exit interview, and he didn’t seem very pleased with the way the situation played out. You could never tell if Scrooge cared or not. His demands have never wavered. He expected perfection and when mistakes were made, they were approached as catastrophic affronts to the sustainability of the business, even if that wasn’t the reality.

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Don’t Get Scammed with Gift Cards

It’s the holiday season, and shoppers are flocking to stores to find the perfect gift for anyone: the gift card. However, these handy little plastic rectangles may not be so perfect after all. This year, they’ve been a key component to a business email compromise scam that has been popular in the past few months.

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The SamSam Ransomware Is Absolutely No Joke

The funny thing about ransomware is that they give them very strange names: Bad Rabbit sounds like the name of a villainous bunny who gets his comeuppance in some type of modern nursery rhyme, not malware that would ravage hundreds of European businesses. Locky seems like the son of Candado de seguridad, a character Medeco would come up with to educate kids on proper physical security. The latest in a long line of funny-named ransomware, SamSam, isn’t a pet name for your pet ferret you perplexingly named Sam, it is one of the worst ransomware strains ever, and it has caught the attention of U.S. Federal law enforcement.

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Tip of the Week: Easy Android Use Tricks

Android devices are known for being customizable, which doesn’t always translate well to user-friendliness. However, if configured properly, these devices feature some nifty shortcuts to just about any function you might require from your device. Here are just four easy ones:

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Tip of the Week: Windows 10 Improvements to Try

Windows 10 has a lot of features to offer a user, and more are being added all the time. We don’t want you to miss out on any, especially if they could help to streamline your business’ processes or your users’ experience. Here are four that you might find particularly handy.

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Five Gadgets for the Techie in Your Life

With the holiday season in full swing, finding good gifts for the technology lover in your life may actually be more frustrating than you’d think. Since there are so many options, people will often get paralysis from trying to find the right gift and end up going the gift card route. Today we will look at five great gift ideas for the technology fan in your life.

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During the Holidays, Cybersecurity Matters at Work and Home

We’re right in the thick of the holiday season, which means two things: one, there’s a lot of data being exchanged between businesses and consumers, and (on a related note) two: there’s ample opportunities for cybercrime, targeting business and consumer both. Whichever side of the coin you are on at any moment, you need to be aware of the risks, and how to mitigate them.

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Gift Card Scam Making Problems for Holiday Shoppers

As the modern gift certificate, the gift card has become an institution, especially around the holidays. Thousands of companies offer statically-priced and reloadable gift cards. With that much cheddar flying around it isn’t a surprise that there is big business in gift card theft. The FTC has stated that gift card scams are up a whopping 270 percent since 2015. With so much money at stake, keeping yourself out of the way of the scammers has to be priority one.

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Three Gifts for Your IT Resource

The holiday season is here, and the spirit of giving is in the air. Why not give the IT professional in your life a few things that they’ve been wishing for all year? Here, we’ve compiled a list of things you can give them, some of which will cost you (and your business) nothing.

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Tip of the Week: How Small Business Goes About Utilizing Technology

No matter how big a business is, it has to leverage at least some IT in order to be efficient. Unfortunately, some organizations are reluctant to implement new technology if they don’t seem to need it immediately. What these businesses don’t know is that the reason they typically don’t implement new solutions--saving money--is in direct conflict with what the solutions are designed to do in the first place.

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Tech Term: Mobile Device Management

While smartphones and tablets can help businesses quite a bit, they can also be quite detrimental to their success. If you can get past the issues related to employees bringing their own devices to the workplace, then you’ll be able to save a considerable amount of time and resources on device procurement, but you certainly want to make sure you have a mobile device management policy put in place first.

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Here’s How Companies Struggle with IT Security

No business can be successful if it’s constantly suffering from data breaches. Therefore, you should take measures to mitigate the issues caused by these threats before they present themselves. Here are four of the biggest issues your business could face in the field of network security.

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What You Need to Know About Technology Upgrades

Even if we’d like it to last forever, business technology can’t possibly do so for a number of reasons. Due to the fact that businesses and their technology are constantly upgrading and changing, it’s almost a certainty that you’ll have to upgrade your technology at some point, whether it reaches its end-of-life event or just simply becomes obsolete for your organization. In fact, failing to update your infrastructure from time to time can have serious negative side-effects for your business.

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Can You Stay Productive In the Face of Constant Distraction?

The modern office is filled with distractions, and that’s to say nothing about the everyday user’s life. With so many devices and notifications interrupting focus for users all over the world, it’s more important than ever before to have a strategy for how to deal with these issues and become as productive as possible in the workplace. Today, we’ll be discussing some of the biggest distractions in the workplace and how your employees can overcome them.

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Businesses Utilizing Cloud-Hosted HR and Payroll

Cloud computing can be used for many things, and nowhere is this more true than in the business environment. Organizations of all shapes and sizes use the cloud to keep operations moving forward. Some have even moved their entire human resources and payroll departments into the cloud. We’ll help you decide if this is the right approach for your organization.

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Tip of the Week: Have a Backup Plan

Data backup tends to carry with it the association that your business could end at any moment, and while this is an important reason to implement data backup, there are countless others to consider as well. You might find that they are just as important to your organization as saving it from a devastating data loss disaster.

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Tip of the Week: Visiting Useful Windows 10 Features

Windows 10 isn’t just a great operating system for getting things done--it’s also jam-packed with features that you might not even have known about. This week’s tip is all about some of the handy features that Windows 10 can provide for your office.

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What To Do When You’ve Had Enough of Your Broken Technology

Chances are that you’ve dealt with the following scenario: You are working along fine and you try to open an application only to be rebuked by an error message on the screen that tells you that there is some type of critical error. You close that out hoping that it was a one-time exception, but nope, it pops up again. You think to yourself, “Why does this always happen?”

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Developers Are Building Blockchain-Based App for Health Records

Many industries depend on their IT working properly to function as intended, and healthcare is among them. Prior to 2009, information technology had failed to take root, but with the passing of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH Act), the health industry is much more involved and reliant on IT than it has ever been before.

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3 Backup Nightmares You Don’t Want to Happen to You

Your business needs to have data backup and disaster recovery, period. There is no exception to this rule. The hard truth of the matter is that your business is risking far too much by not implementing data backup and disaster recovery. Today, we’ll examine scenarios in which a business might find its data threatened, as well as how modern businesses can keep their data safe, even when the world seems out to get them.

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Here is How Antivirus Keeps a Business Safe

A lot is made about antivirus as a part of a comprehensive network security platform, but how does the system really work to eliminate threats? Today, we will take a look at an antivirus solution to show you how it goes about removing unwanted files and other code.

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CPT: Cold Weather Comfort Food

When the Winter season passes a certain threshold, it can seem like the sun will never shine again. It’s perpetually cold outside; you have to bundle up in a lot of layers just to feel some sense of warmth. If you work and live in a place that gets a lot of snow like we do, you have to spend time every day brushing off your car and scraping the ice off of your windshield.

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Tip of the Week: How to Dominate OneNote

Microsoft’s OneNote application is great for taking notes, but its functionality is much more than just that. We’ll be sharing some of our favorite tips and tricks to help you make the most of your OneNote.

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Tech Term: What are All These “-Wares?”

When you’re talking about something to do with a computer, you’re going to start hearing about some word that ends with “-ware.” You could probably list off a few yourself, but have you ever stopped to think about why they’re all described as “something-ware?” For this week’s Tech Term, we’ll take a peek at why we refer to things that way.

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Strategizing Your IT Leads to Better Business

Business technology continues to grow in importance for the small and medium-sized business, especially as many prepare for 2019. Where enterprise-level companies have long been using technology to bring people together and drive overall productivity, many SMBs are new to these opportunities. The availability of cloud resources, coupled with shifts in security, mobility, and other core technologies, makes it important for every organization, no matter what size, to have a comprehensive technology strategy.

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Your Technology May Fail, but You Can Still Succeed

If you’ve been in business for a while, there are devices on your network that see little to no use. Even for the most frugal business, due to the fact that technology eventually winds up being arbitrary thanks to the continued development (and deployment) of more powerful solutions, there will always be situations where you have devices that do nothing but take up space. You can reduce the chances of this happening by finding the right IT for the job the first time, while sparingly implementing only IT solutions that will provide a return on your investment.

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Those Irritating Spam Calls May Not Last Much Longer

While the phone is still a useful communication tool, it lately has been the cause of a large amount of stress from businesses and users alike. While caller ID was once also a useful tool to help stop spam calls, we now cannot trust the numbers it provides. Letting personal calls go to voicemail to check them is one thing, but a business shouldn’t do that. What can they do?

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This Scammer Raid Proves Just How Useful Monitoring Can Be

It can be easy to underestimate the importance of monitoring your solutions, to adopt an “out of sight, out of mind” mentality. However, the benefits of persistent monitoring were recently thrust into the spotlight, when 24 spammers were arrested in October by the Delhi Police’s cyber cell for impersonating Microsoft support staff and duping American citizens.

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Remote Management Brings Certain Benefits

If your business experiences a technological failure, how many operations simply stop dead in their tracks until the problem is resolved? While it might seem like you have no control over your business’ technology (at least the issues that cause downtime), this is far from the truth. If you take action now, you can prevent issues from cropping up in the first place rather than reacting to them later, after they have already caused considerable problems for your business.

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Tip of the Week: Improving Some Cybersecurity Basics

What are your chances of being hacked, or targeted by some kind of cyberattack? I hate to tell you this, but they’re probably a lot higher than you might think.

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Tip of the Week: Keyboard Shortcuts to Save You Time

Even the simplest tasks in the office can eat up a surprising amount of time over the span of a year. For example, did you know that switching from your keyboard to your mouse can consume up to eight full work days every year? By taking advantage of keyboard shortcuts, you can cut down on the amount of time wasted on these little tasks.

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Signs That Your Business Needs to Upgrade Your Crucial IT

Chances are if you are in business today, there are a lot of devices on your network that you haven’t touched in years, might not be using, or don’t even need. Unfortunately, there are times when the technology you have doesn’t really do much other than take up space. If you feel like you are spending too much on your technology, you may not be wrong. By finding the IT that helps your business do business better, and scrapping plans for implementing technology that doesn’t provide sustainable returns may be a good strategy.

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A Secure Wireless Network Allows for Better Business

Wireless Internet access for a user’s devices isn’t just a luxury these days--it’s expected. If the Wi-Fi drops out for any reason at all, chaos strikes, rendering any ability to stream content or access the Internet a moot point. This is particularly the case for businesses that have technology solutions reliant on wireless access. How can you make sure your wireless network is as strong and reliable as possible?

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The Internet Continues to Change Business

With so many people depending on the Internet for a litany of reasons, there might not be the general acknowledgment of just how powerful the ubiquitous use of the Internet really is for businesses. From the storage and redundancy of business’ data to virtualized computing platforms to browser-based interfaces that provide access to productivity and communications software, today’s Internet is filled with solutions for the modern business.

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Steve Brat
The continuous of the following part where it will manage the part which needs the best way to get the work done in such a way whe... Read More
Monday, 19 November 2018 11:53
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Setting Android’s Security Options

You might be shocked to find out that your mobile device holds a considerable amount of personally identifiable information on it. This has prompted many users to secure their phones at all times, but others simply ignore the threat and brush it aside. Since Google makes it so easy, there’s no excuse for Android users not to secure their devices. Here’s how you can do it.

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CPT: The Perfect Combo

Today for lunch, we decided that we wanted to put a little spin on an office favorite - Crack Chicken. But, how could we make this already amazing recipe even tastier?

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Tip of the Week: Introducing Evernote Templates

Evernote is a neat note-taking app that many users have found works for them, as it can be used to keep notes organized in a better way than a traditional notebook. With new features that can offer you plenty of functionality, Evernote might just be the note-taking solution you’ve been looking for all these years. This week’s tip is dedicated to one of the best new features of Evernote: templates.

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Indiana Boyer
I have used the Ever note template and I am very much satisfied with it. It's going great in all over the world and https://ua-rep... Read More
Wednesday, 21 November 2018 18:37
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Tip of the Week: You Better Test Your Backup

Data backup can be the difference between a business that fails and a business that succeeds. After all, if an organization suffers from a data loss incident so bad that it has to deploy its data backup, it wouldn’t be able to survive without it. With a data backup and disaster solution, you can ensure business continuity. But what does this kind of system need in order to succeed, and how can you make sure your organization benefits from a data backup system in place?

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Human Error is a Major Problem for Businesses

There is always going to be user error in the workplace. Even the best workers make mistakes sometimes. You naturally want to reduce these occurrences as often as possible, but for the purposes of training and whatnot, you want to assume the worst: that any worker, even the most dedicated veteran, could potentially make a business-ending mistake. Thankfully, there are ways you can make sure this doesn’t happen for your business.

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Automation is Exciting, But your Employees Might Be Worried

It’s no secret that business operations have a lot of moving parts that need to be considered. The thing is, these parts are most likely the simplest elements of any workflow, but take up large portions of time simply due to the number of them that need to be addressed.

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How to Frame Your Marketing Around Major Holidays

Whenever a major holiday is coming up, you’re likely confronted with multiple reminders of it in your daily lives. You may see commercials on TV, receive emails from companies, get flyers in the mail. You’ll see specialized packaging for brands you buy every day that reflects the upcoming holiday. It makes sense why companies are doing this - holidays celebrated by the general population give a business an excuse to get in contact with the consumer. And, this often leads to an uptick in sales.

You can do the same for your small business. The key to succeeding with holiday marketing is framing your marketing correctly in terms of your language and the imagery you use.

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Your Business May Be Most Vulnerable from the Inside

It can be easy, with all the threats covered in the news, to assume that the biggest dangers to your business all come from the outside. This is a dangerous mistake, as there are plenty of vulnerabilities that originate from within your organization, making it easier for outside threats to come in, if not being bigger threats in and of themselves. Below, we’ll review some of the biggest, mostly internal dangers that your business may face.

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3 Ways Email Encryption Keeps Your Messages Safe

Encryption is a very important tool in today’s business environment, especially if you are trying to protect your email communications. Today, we’ll discuss the benefits of using encryption for your business’ communications solutions, but without an understanding of what encryption actually is, the conversation might be a little harder to understand.

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Tip of the Week: Extremely Useful Word Tips

Microsoft Word is one of those computer applications that has so many tricks hidden in it that you constantly have opportunities to show off how much you’ve learned. These skills could make or break your job performance under the right conditions, and if you know how to use them efficiently, they can help you save your job if it’s in peril.

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Tech Term: Zero-Day

You might hear the term “zero-day” when discussing security threats, but do you know what they actually are? A zero-day threat is arguably one of the most devastating and dangerous security issues your business could face, and if you’re not prepared, they could be the end of it.

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Monitoring is Essential to IT Success

More small businesses today depend on their IT. If that technology isn’t working as intended, it can really stymie an organization’s ability to be effective. Our strategy of managed IT support and services can do quite a bit towards keeping a business running efficiently. Today, we’ll take a look at managed IT to see how proactive monitoring can deliver enhanced efficiency to businesses.

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Bing Offers Malware and Filth

With a meager market share that is one-third the size of Google’s, one would think that Bing would be trying to keep controversy away from a user’s search results. However, the Microsoft search engine has recently encountered a few notable PR disasters that may be enough to convince some not to use it - especially if it leads to a security breach.

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Are You Prepared to Weather Any Disaster?

Hurricane season can be a scary time for business owners, as those in at-risk climates can never feel safe from these kinds of unpredictable and devastating storms. In particular, those who aren’t prepared to face this destruction are in considerable danger of having their organizations ended for good following a disaster event like a hurricane. We’ll help you make sure your business doesn’t suffer this same fate the next time it stares down a disaster.

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4 Backup and Recovery Terms You Should Understand

With data looked on as more of an asset than ever organizations are finding that their data backup and recovery system needs to be comprehensive. By knowing more about backup and recovery, you stand to be able to plan the solution to meet your company’s needs. Today, we will look at the different types of data backup and introduce you to four terms you need to understand.

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Tip of the Week: Who Should Have Admin Accounts?

Depending on their work roles within your organization, your employees will either have an ordinary user account or an administrator account. This can be one of the more stressful parts of managing a network, as the answer for who gets administrator access isn’t always clear. We’ll explain what an admin account is and why it’s important to have restraint when looking at who should have an admin account.

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Tip of the Week: Don’t Let Former Employees Haunt Your Business

For the modern small business owner, there are situations that you are forced to deal with that are frustrating; but, in the course of doing business would be considered normal. Then there are other situations that arise where, every step of the way, the figurative floor falls out from under your feet and you are forced to react quickly. Some of these circumstances can be pretty spooky for your business. This Halloween, we’ve decided to outline three scary circumstances your business may have to deal with, and how to keep your cool.

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What Could Possibly Be Wrong with Your Computer?

Slow computers are one of the small annoyances in an office that can implicate a much larger issue is hidden. The frustration stems from not being able to get anything done, whether it’s because the computer isn’t responding to your commands or it’s so slow that you can’t accomplish anything noteworthy in your day. Thankfully, you can take some steps to check the speed of your computer so as to take proper action when it’s not working at expected.

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Uber Demonstrates the Importance of Disclosing a Data Breach

If your business was breached, would it be better to keep it a secret, or should you disclose it to your clients? Uber has proven that trying to hide it is a mistake, and a costly one at that.

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Understanding the Basics of Server Maintenance

Server units--you’ll find them in most offices out there, but they are all used for different purposes. Since well-maintained data is so essential to the success of many organizations, it’s important to keep your server units in proper working order. Today we’ll discuss the best ways to make sure your servers are in peak performance.

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The Internet of Things Continues to Expand

The Internet of Things is now made up of over 15 billion devices. 15 billion. This number includes both consumer devices in a home environment as well as business devices that are typically used in an office setting. As such, you cannot risk ignoring this phenomenon, whether it’s from a security standpoint or one of practicality. We’ll discuss the many ways the IoT is shaping business practices in today’s modern office.

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CPT: Happy World Pasta Day! Celebrate with This Recipe

It's World Pasta Day today, so we couldn't NOT eat pasta for today's Crock-Pot Thursday lunch. We settled on a little twist on traditional Italian pasta dish - spaghetti, and baked it in the oven with a combination of ingredients that you might not expect to work so well together. This may be your new favorite!

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Tip of the Week: How Technology Covers a Business’ Needs

If you look around your company, there’s a good chance that it has a lot of technology that you completely take for granted. No matter if you run a small retail store, a factory, or a multi-location office, your business needs IT to function properly. Today, we will take a look into several ways your organization can use technology to improve your business.

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Technology Basics: Accessory

Taking care of your computer is necessary if you want to get the maximum return on investment from such an expensive piece of hardware. Granted, this can be a lot to handle, as it includes cleaning your PC regularly, keeping security at its finest, and organizing all of the information stored on it. When it all works as intended, there is an immense feeling of satisfaction. This is when it’s most effective to look at accessories.

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reCAPTCHA: The First Line of Defense

Security is paramount. These days, hackers are aggressive and relentless when it comes to using exploits to test your security. So much so that even when applying multiple layers of protection across a site, the server, and keeping everything patched, threats can sneak in. This is why it is critical to have a first line of defense; in this case, a CAPTCHA.

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Instant Messaging Is a Valuable Tool for Businesses

Once thought to just be a cool feature of the Internet--or the entirety of the Internet to your Great Aunt Maddie--instant messaging has a long history on the web. In fact, one could argue that it was the first great Internet-based application. Today, we take a look back at the history of Instant Messaging and how your organization can use it to create a better business.

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A Busy Staff Isn’t Always a Productive Staff

Productivity is one of the most vital parts of running a business, as without it no work can get done. Even if your employees look like they are keeping themselves busy, a study from the Harvard Business School suggests they may not be as busy as you think they are. How does this work, and what can you do to resolve this issue?

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Cloud-Based Security Is Concerning for Small Businesses

The cloud is such an important part of today’s business environment that most organizations use it to some extent, even if it’s just for basic storage needs. However, the cloud needs to be properly maintained, starting with the way you secure your cloud services. Take a moment to ask yourself if your cloud--whether it’s hosted on-site or by a provider--is safe and secure.

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Google’s Making Changes to Chrome, and Not Everyone’s Happy

Chrome 70 is yet another example of how divisive technology has the potential to be. On the one hand, a few of the changes have people excited about some clear benefits to security, but others worry that Chrome will no longer be as secure or as user-friendly. We’ll review some of the changes coming with Chrome 70, so you can decide for yourself.

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CPT: Holding Back Tears...

Don’t worry - we’re not sad! Actually, quite the opposite.

When Directive team members entered the kitchen today while today’s Crock-Pot Thursday meal was cooking, it was hard to not let a few tears fall. To make enough of the French Onion Chicken recipe for everyone in the office, we had to slice and cook NINE POUNDS of onions. As you can imagine, entering that room was a bit overwhelming.

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Tech Term: Responsive Web Design

We all have our favorite websites to visit, as well as those we often have to visit to fulfill our responsibilities. As a result, it isn’t uncommon for us to try and access the same websites on both a desktop workstation and a mobile device, but some websites work better than others while trying this. This is because of something called responsive web design, which we’ll review below for our weekly Tech Term.

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Getting to Know Technology: Link

Navigation is important for any computing system--particularly the Internet, where there are countless destinations. The Internet is comprised of various web pages, images, videos, and many other valuable little bits of content that are all connected by a web of links. These links are the cornerstone of the Internet, and we’ll explain the details of how they work and what they are.

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3 Ways VoIP Can Enhance Your Employees’ Collaboration: Here’s How

It’s not every day that you encounter a business technology solution that’s capable of connecting all of your employees together in a quick and easy way. Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, is a great way for your business’ employees to collaborate, both in and out of the office. We’ll go into three reasons why your business should invest in VoIP now to further improve operations and efficiency regarding employee collaboration.

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Is Election Technology Solid or Simply Antiquated

Election Day in the United States is coming up quick on November 6th. It doesn’t matter what your thoughts or opinions on U.S. politics are--the fact remains that millions of Americans will be using the technology available at polling places to cast their ballots, and if this technology isn’t secured properly, the integrity of the voting system will be at risk.

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Co-Managed Services Can Help Build a Better Business

Let’s say that your organization has experienced considerable growth over the past couple of years. It’s not outpacing your IT infrastructure, and the cracks are starting to show in more ways than one. This makes it difficult to plan for the future, implement new IT initiatives, and react to issues as they crop up. If your business doesn’t have an internal IT department heading these developments, outsourcing can be a viable option to make sure all of your organization’s technological needs keep your progress moving forward.

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Just How Important Is the Data Recovery Process?

Data recovery can make your break your business’ continuity plan, and you absolutely cannot underestimate how important this is for the future of your organization. There are countless ways your business could lose data, and if you encounter even a single one of them, your organization could be put at serious risk. We’ll take a look at operational data loss and how your organization needs to strategize data recovery.

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