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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.

How Has COVID-19 Impacted Cybersecurity Needs?

Data security is always a challenge that businesses must rise to meet, but the COVID-19 pandemic has complicated things significantly by creating situations that make ensuring this security even more difficult. Let’s go over the impacts that many organizations—especially those in the healthcare industry—have had to deal with due, in part, to the coronavirus.

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Can We Innovate Electronic Health Records?

It’s important to note that all parties involved in patient care (including the patient) benefit from the Electronic Health Record (EHR). These systems are now fundamental to a successful health maintenance system. As more technology is developed that could be integrated into the EHR platform, there is a stalemate of sorts keeping EHR technology from being what it could be. Today, we will briefly discuss some of the issues. 

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Unify Your Communications and Improve Efficiency

Cloud computing is as popular as ever with 80 percent of businesses now using some form of it. Today, you can get about any type of business computing in the cloud, but one of the most valuable solutions that most businesses can use is found in the communications sector. This month we’ll talk a little bit about how a hosted VoIP platform can be one of the most useful solutions for your business. 

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How the IoT Can Be Used to Help Your Business Processes

The Internet of Things has been around for some time now, with devices being given some level of artificial intelligence and Internet connectivity to improve their intended functions since 1982. After some time as a fringe approach to technology, it has now become an invaluable tool for many business functions. Let’s review the ways that the IoT can be harnessed to your advantage.

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Tip of the Week: Six Keys to Managing Your Phone’s Battery Life

Considering how much as we rely on our mobile devices each day, it comes as no surprise how stressful the “LOW BATTERY” notification can be. While you might assume that it only seems to appear earlier and earlier in the day, there are in fact a variety of conditions that cause your device to die much faster. That’s why we wanted to share a few tips to help you understand what is happening to your battery, and what you can do to manage its longevity a little better.

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Alert: Update Windows Netlogon Remote Protocol Now, says Homeland Security

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has released an emergency directive concerning a critical exploit known as Zerologon, that affects servers running Windows Server operating systems that needs to get patched as soon as possible.

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How Should IT Be Used as Employees Return to Workplaces?

Many workplaces have started the processes necessary to safely return their employees to typical operations. However, this is going to involve no small amount of preparation in terms of your business’ technology and proactive planning. Let’s consider the different approaches that you could take as you resume operations in a way that helps protect your team while still enabling work to be done.

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Cybercrime Spiking During the Pandemic

Keeping your network and infrastructure free from threats is always a priority, but with so many people working remotely businesses have encountered problems doing so. In fact, hackers, known for their opportunism, have been ultra-opportunistic during this period and it is causing many headaches for network administrators. Let’s take a look at some statistics that are definitely concerning as we head into the fall, where many experts expect the virus to become more problematic. 

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A Security Briefing on Chrome Extensions

Did you know that, as of July 2020, 69 percent of global desktop Internet users utilized Google Chrome as their browser of choice? With such a large market share, the security associated with Google Chrome is important to keep in mind. To help increase some of this awareness, we wanted to talk about Chrome’s many extensions and the permissions they are too often granted, with minimal awareness from the user.

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Is Older Technology Really That Bad?

While it may sound strange coming from a managed service provider, there is some wisdom to the adage, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” We know, we know… it sounds a little hypocritical for us to say something like this, when we spend so much time touting the values of proactive maintenance and similar strategies. However, this now-cliché statement certainly holds water, as exemplified by many modern technologies—including the Boeing 747.

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Tip of the Week: Gmail’s Newly-Improved Collaboration

Clearly demonstrating their prioritization of their G Suite offering, Google continues to innovate the platform’s many solutions to improve the user experience. Most recently, this has included giving Gmail a few extra functionalities to help further integrate a business’ communications. Let’s look at these functionalities together.

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Tip of the Week: Simple Fixes to Common Android Issues

As capable as the Android platform is, there are a few significant shortcomings that can negatively influence the user’s experience. Here, we wanted to offer a few tips to help you eliminate or avoid these shortcomings as you work with your mobile device.

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How Is Your Tech Working?

We are a strong proponent of proactive, managed IT (as opposed to waiting to fix a computer when it breaks). It simply offers the best bang for the buck for most Oneonta businesses. We also recognize that IT budgets are especially tight, and a big part of that is due to the pandemic. With everything being as it is, the nominal cost of maintaining computer equipment almost always costs less than having to deal with downtime and emergency support calls.

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What Would Happen if All Data Was Publically Available?

What if I were to tell you that, by the time you finished reading this sentence, all personal data in existence was exposed? If every text sent, every Google search executed, every website visited, everything we had ever done online, was made public? Gizmodo recently reached out to an assortment of experts for their insights. Here, we’ve assembled their responses for you to consider.

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Explaining FinTech and How It Allows You to Take Control of Your Financial Health

Technology improves a lot of things, especially when it is used to make something that is usually time-consuming and difficult less so. One aspect of life that is changing rapidly is the financial services sector. Finance, banking, insurance, and other industries that would be tabbed as financial services have embraced mobile technology for its ease of use and efficiency. The development of computer applications that make it easier to invest, diviest, and manage financial services and money are becoming prevalent throughout society. Let’s take a look at FinTech.

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Phishing is a Threat, Even By Phone

Telework has become crucial for businesses to sustain themselves right now, as remote work became a hard and fast requirement in the face of the coronavirus. However, if businesses aren’t careful, they could trade one issue for another in exposing themselves to security threats.

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Cloud Costs Could Undermine Your Efforts

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues around us, many businesses have found themselves seriously reconsidering their business’ infrastructure, pondering the switch from onsite hardware to cloud-based options. While these hosted options can offer businesses relief from a costly hardware refresh, it is important to acknowledge that cloud computing may not be a one-size-fits-all panacea. Let’s take a closer look.

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Tip of the Week: How to Control Facebook and Instagram Ads

Social media platforms—like Facebook and Instagram—are a great place to communicate with people, as many political campaigns are now taking advantage of. With an election on the horizon, political advertisements abound on these platforms. Of course, not everyone wants their feeds cluttered with these ads… especially if these ads don’t align to their own politics.

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Tip of the Week: When Do I Need to Clean My Computer?

As your employees go about their workdays, it is important that they do so with the resources they’ll need to remain optimally productive… and that these resources are in the best condition for them to do so. While this is often an overlooked consideration, this means that their computer needs to be clean and fully functional. Let’s go over a few best practices to follow when it comes to keeping a workstation clean enough to work optimally.

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Three Ways (Out of Many) That VoIP Boosts Productivity

VoIP—Voice over Internet Protocol—is an incredibly useful tool for today’s businesses to make use of, especially in terms of improving productivity. Let’s consider a few capabilities that can give you and your team a leg up.

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How To Have Your Business Turn Up In a Local Search

When it comes to search results, all search is local. The more connected you are to your community, the better your chances are to rank higher in local search results. While there are a variety of steps to increase your local search marketing, the most basic, but critically important, is to ensure that Google knows where your business is. If your NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) isn’t consistent throughout your presence on the internet, there is a chance that you may not appear in your localized search results.

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Technology Making it Possible to Go Back to School Online

2020 has provided a stark new reality when it comes to education. While many schools across the country are trying their hardest to get students back in the classroom, the situation with COVID-19 is making it extraordinarily difficult. Students of 2020 are going to be doing some of their schooling online, there is no way around it. Today, we’ll take a look at some of the technology that is making this distance learning possible.

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Professional Services are Getting a Technology Makeover

Professional services include some of the oldest professions in the world, and some of the newest. Regardless of what kind of professional services business you run, it is hard to continue to meet your customer’s needs without incorporating some technological changes. Furthermore, there are new innovations that can help your business thrive. Let’s examine some of this technology to see if it could benefit your business.

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Do Your Privacy Practices Line Up With Your Privacy Expectations?

How concerned are you about your data privacy, as a consumer, particularly when you entrust it to another business? If you answered “very”, you aren’t alone… 87 percent of Americans consider their data privacy to be a human right. Having said that, most don’t pay near enough attention to their own security precautions. Let’s take a few moments and examine this trend.

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Business Analytics 101

Business analytics are a growing field, as all businesses can see benefits to their operations through the optimized performance and decision making that these kinds of analytics enable. Let’s go over business analytics, and how they can be used to your advantage when applied to your technology.

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Tip of the Week: Getting a Better Wi-Fi Signal at Work or at Home

Chances are you’re still spending a lot of time at home, and a lot of that time is being spent on the Internet. With so many still working remotely, and many educational institutions continuing remote learning, the strength of a household’s Wi-Fi signal is going to be crucial. We wanted to offer you some tips to help you maximize the signal strength of your router.

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What Your Business Can Learn From the Recent Twitter Social Engineering Hack

This may be an uncomfortable truth when it comes to data security: the weakest link to keeping your data secure will be your employees. As social media giant Twitter recently discovered, despite the best technical security measures you have in place, all it takes is a break in protocol to place your client’s data and your business’ reputation at risk.

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New Cyberattack Targeting Remote Workers

Since the onset of the coronavirus, many businesses have managed to sustain themselves through remote work—also commonly known as telework. While this strategy has allowed quite a few businesses to survive, it has also opened them up to security threats. Here, let’s focus on one such threat: vishing, or voice phishing.

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What’s Happening with Blockchain

For a while there, blockchain was a buzzword that you would hear about constantly. It was the future of data security and secure online transactions. As 2020 has pointed our attention elsewhere, you’ve heard less and less about blockchain technology. Today, we’ll take a look at what some of the most innovative companies are doing with distributed encrypted networks,

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Will We Soon Leave Passwords Behind?

If I were to tell you that one variable was responsible for more than 80 percent of cyberattacks, what would you guess that variable was? If you guessed “stolen access credentials,” you’d be correct. The traditional username/password combination may soon be a thing of the past as more tech companies transition to alternative authentication measures.

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How to Ensure Your IT Resilience

How confident are you that your business could survive a data disaster of any size and scale, from a single misplaced file to a complete loss of your entire onsite infrastructure? Being prepared to recover from any version of events is key to your business’ success. Let’s discuss this concept, which is widely known as IT resilience.

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What to Do If Your Business Can’t Work Remotely?

We often discuss the “new normal” for businesses post-coronavirus and focus on the need for organizations to update their businesses to continue to complete and, most importantly, remain operational during the lockdown, most notably remote workers. However, the reality is there are many businesses that can’t readily take advantage of a remote workforce, due to the nature of their business. Here are some tips to help your business thrive, even if you aren’t able to take advantage of remote work.

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Tip of the Week: How to Implement Smarter Scheduling

If your business is like most, you and your team likely rely on a schedule to keep your processes moving along efficiently… while also ensuring that everyone has something to work on at any time. However, this is often easier said than done, which is why there are now cloud-based software options that make your scheduling efforts a little smarter.

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Are Breaks During the Workday all that Helpful?

Modern society is greatly focused on the virtue of hard work, of productivity. This has led to a kind of unspoken prejudice against breaks in the workplace, that any break that is not earned is the sign of an unproductive employee. As it turns out, the opposite is true. This week, we’re going over how you can turn your breaks into a way to accomplish more in the workplace.

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We’re Seeing an Increase in COVID-19-Related Cyberattacks

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 situation in March, creating a vaccine has been a major priority. True to form, hackers have begun targeting the very organizations responsible for the vaccine trials. There’s a lesson to be learned, today we’ll discuss it.

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Online Platforms are Collaborating for a More Secure Election

The United States of America is well into its 2020 election season. Social media platforms, and other online services, are taking notice. Given the misuse of social media and other platforms in past contests, there is little wonder that there is some very real pressure on these platforms to establish policy and security measures to prevent these behaviors this time around.

Here, we’ll take a neutral look at the situation, and explain the initiatives that online platforms are now enacting.

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Are VPNs Really Secure?

We’ve not been shy about promoting the use of VPNs (virtual private networks) as a means of protecting your security while you are online. However, we wanted to take a bit of time to specify what a VPN can - and cannot - do to help you.

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When Securing Your Smartphone, Some Options are Better Than Others

Today’s smartphones are equipped with assorted ways that users can authenticate their identity, from the now old-fashioned PIN to basic biometrics. However, while these options are available on a wide range of phones, not all of them are equally secure. Let’s look a bit closer at these authentication measures to find out which is most effective.

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Tip of the Week: Two Kinds of Best Practices for Remote Work

If you’re trying to productively work from home, what you use and how you use it are equally important considerations. To assist you, we felt it would be helpful to share a few best practices for each variable, so that you might be able to boost your remote productivity.

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Tip of the Week: A Beginner’s Guide to Wireless Networking

When creating an office’s network, wireless functionality has become a necessary element to include. Of course, this is usually easier said than done, as wireless signals can be notoriously persnickety. That’s why we’re offering some tips to help you make the most of your business’ wireless network setup.

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Can My Boss Use a Webcam to Monitor Me at Home?

Many businesses concerned with productivity are considering using webcams to monitor their remote employees’ work habits. While it seems like a good idea, the biggest challenge is determining when using a webcam to measure productivity transforms into spying on your team.

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This Chrome Bug Could Affect Billions

Data and cybersecurity is hard enough without vulnerabilities coming from one of your most utilized applications. That’s the scenario after a bug was found in some of today’s most popular Internet browsers putting billions of people’s data security at risk. Let’s take a brief look at the vulnerability and how you can ensure that it won’t be a problem for you or your company.

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Comparing the Relative Danger of AI-Aided Crimes

When we think of cybercrime, most people’s minds go to one of two places. On the one hand, some think about the annoying, misspelled emails that are so obviously scams, while on the other, we can’t help but think about the hacks that we see in movies, where a criminal manages to overcome the best the government can incorporate into their defenses.

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No, Apple and Google Are Not Tracking Your Health

In a rare turn of events, Google and Apple have teamed up with local governments to help slow the ongoing spread of COVID-19. How would you like an app that could notify you if someone you had been in proximity to had tested positive for COVID-19? As useful as this collaboration could be to staunching the pandemic, many people are in uproar about it, and have begun to spread misinformation.

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Four Questions You Need to Ask Yourself About Your Data’s Security

Data security always needs to be considered as one of your most important business priorities. After all, the ramifications of data loss are wide-reaching and severe. To help you ensure that your data security is at the level it needs to be, we’ve put together five questions you need to answer regarding your business’ security preparedness.

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Let’s Take a Look Around Android 11

There may not be any “official” date set for the release of Android 11, we have gotten a glimpse of it through beta testing. Let’s take a look at some of the features you might see when the OS officially launches.

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Tip of the Week: Searching Google More Specifically

Everyone knows how to do a Google Search, right? Go to the site, type whatever it is you’re looking for into the search bar, and you’re off to the races. Fewer people are aware, however, of the ways that you can help Google narrow its search a bit. Let’s go over a few handy Google cheat codes that can make your search results more precise.

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What are Unified Communications, Exactly?

As businesses have advanced, the use of tools to improve their communication has become paramount to success, with ongoing global developments only contributing further to their importance. With new challenges and opportunities presenting themselves each day, your team needs the tools that allow them to work together and accomplish all that needs to be done.

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5 Benefits of a Document Management System

Every person has documents that they need access to, so it stands to reason that a business has hundreds. If you and your staff are tired of sifting through dingy file cabinets to find that the document that should be in a certain place, isn’t, considering a document management system may be right for you. Today we will give you five good reasons why moving to document management can be a benefit for your business. 

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How Have Businesses and Their Technology Been Impacted by COVID-19?

There is no question that the COVID-19 pandemic has had no small impact on the way that business is conducted. A considerable part of that impact is directed toward the technology that powers these businesses. One way or another, the way that businesses use their technology is bound to be influenced before all this is over.

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How Likely Is It for Remote Work to Continue?

Remote work has been crucial to many businesses as they work to sustain themselves throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. However, as businesses have adopted these new methods of operation, it has become clear that remote work is likely to be much more than a survival tactic moving forward. Let’s look to a recent survey to see how remote work is influencing these businesses.

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Why Businesses Should Select a Hosted Email Solution

Email is easily one of the most commonly (and most often) used business tools there are, but as with any tool, some options are better than others. This week, we’re giving you some tips on how to best use email in your business by using hosted email.

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What’s the Benefit of Content Filtering?

Wasting time is a big concern in any business, and this is one place where the Internet can potentially hurt as much as it helps. Of course, it does still help, as the Internet is where many of today’s business tools are accessed. How can you ensure that your team is spending their time working, rather than on social media or other distracting websites?

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Google and Apple Pushed a COVID-19 Exposure Notification Setting to Your Phone. Here is Everything You Need to Know

Many users are noticing or just starting to hear about Google and Apple’s initiative to work with local governments to provide an easy way to help users prevent getting infected with COVID-19. The idea is that, if a local or state government wanted to build an app for users that would tell them if people nearby have been tested positive for COVID-19, they would get a notification on their phone. 

This, of course, raises many questions and concerns about privacy, but a lot of people are being warned that this has been forced onto their phones already, and that just simply isn’t the case. Let’s take a look.

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Ransomware is Still a Major Threat

Ransomware is the scariest type of malware out there. It can have a myriad of negative effects on a business, yet it seems to still be on the fringe of the mainstream. Today, we thought we would give somewhat of a refresher course on ransomware. 

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How to Avoid the Influence of a Phishing Scam

Phishing emails are a real problem for today’s businesses, which makes it critically important that you and your team can identify them as they come in. Let’s touch on a few reliable indicators that a message isn’t a legitimate one.

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How Cybercriminals Are Keeping Themselves Entertained

With the given pandemic, a lot of people have had a bit more time on their hands, so it makes sense that many are turning to streaming services and the like for their entertainment. Unfortunately, this has not gone unnoticed by cybercriminals.

Let’s take a few moments and examine the practice of credential stuffing.

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Tip of the Week: Spotting Potential Mobile Malware

Chances are, you not only have a smartphone, but that smartphone is also currently within arm’s reach. With these devices playing an increasingly important role in our personal and professional lives, these devices have proven to be a lucrative target for hackers to pursue. This week, our tip is meant to help you spot the warning signs that an application is hiding an attack.

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Tip of the Week: Altering Your Android Device’s Power Settings

As a smartphone gets older, it’s battery will start to degrade. For years it was as simple as replacing the battery on the device, but over the past several years, no major smartphone manufacturer builds devices with removable batteries. Fortunately for users, the Android OS has made it a point to build power settings into the software that provides them the ability to manipulate how power is used on the phone. Today, we will take a look at some of the settings you can use to keep your device running longer.

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Businesses Need to Use Automation to Adapt

Let’s be real. For most small businesses during this period, it’s been extremely difficult.  If you were somehow able to sustain operations during this time, you most likely had to make some serious alterations to the way that you normally do things. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of the technologies that you probably already have, and how you can change the way you use them to benefit your business as concerns spike over COVID-19. 

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Collaboration Spans Multiple Apps

The improvement in technology directly contributes to the amount of productivity business sees. One place this is evident is in the way in which businesses use collaboration tools to move business forward. Let’s take a brief look at what exactly we mean by collaboration tools and how they benefit the businesses that use them. 

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The Extreme Changes Businesses Have to Make to Survive COVID-19

For the months that COVID-19 has been around, everyone has done all they can to hold on to their business. They have closed down, they have closed their offices and forced their employees to work from home, they have borrowed money and scaled back or eliminated their 2020 plans. It would be nice if all that sacrifice would pay off, but the frustrating reality is that there is going to be a lot of sustained discomfort for a lot of business owners. Let’s take a look at some things small business owners should consider as they reopen their businesses. 

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Considering Point of Sale Technology

Point of sale software and solutions have long offered massive benefits to businesses, with these benefits growing as the technology has advanced. Let’s look at how the POS system has developed over the years to offer the business utilities and benefits that it does today.

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Tip of the Week: Handy Tricks to Formatting Excel Spreadsheets

Microsoft Excel is, for many, the de facto spreadsheet-creation software. However, fewer know about its useful formatting capabilities and shortcuts. To help you make your own Excel sheets more comprehensible, we’re sharing some tips to help you format your documents.

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Tip of the Week: How a Hokie Gift Can Revolutionize Your Network

How many times have you gone to the store and bought something that you already had? Unfortunately, this happens all the time, but fortunately it’s usually a half gallon of milk or a loaf of bread. When it happens in your business, it can be much more expensive. Today, we will advocate for an inventory strategy that will keep you from spending wads of cash on redundant investments. 

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Remote Monitoring and Managed IT, and the Impact it Has on Small Business

With more people than ever working from home, their ability to receive the support they need to keep their devices in top working order is crucial. As a result, many businesses have turned to managed IT service providers to maintain their employees’ computers. MSPs like us utilize a tool called remote monitoring and management software (RMM). Let’s discuss what it is and why it is so useful for managing your company’s IT. 

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Collaborate Better for More Successful Workflow

If your business is like many others, you’ve pushed off some of your more capital-intensive plans and focused on efficiency. Now that things are starting to reopen in many places, it’s been made clear that keeping your business running with remote workers is a good strategy, but you can’t keep your projects on the back burner forever. Using video conferencing solutions to help run your projects can be a good stopgap that can give your business some flexibility. Let’s take a look. 

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What Your IT Documentation Needs to Include, and Why

It is important that you have a handle on the technology that your business utilizes, which will require you to maintain comprehensive documentation regarding it and its support. Here, we’ll go through what a managed service provider includes in this documentation, as well as how it is used.

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How Your Business Could Take Advantage of Cloud Services

As businesses have been allowed access to more advanced tools, the cloud and its capabilities have been shown to be among the most useful to operations. Let’s examine some practical applications of the cloud to see why this is.

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How To Prepare Your Business for Post-Coronavirus

Things are still very up in the air when it comes to the pandemic and New York state’s reopening. At the time of writing this, most of Upstate NY is entering Phase 4. That said, social distancing and contact-free interactions will most likely be with us for some time. Is your business ready to conduct business in a post-coronavirus world?

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These Types of Applications Can Improve Workplace Productivity

Productivity is—generally speaking—the core goal of any modern software solution. Today, we wanted to go over a few tools that can boost your productivity and efficiency right now.

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Do You Know How to Build Solid Passwords?

The password is the core element of both data security and user authentication. This makes the construction of them extremely important to protecting digital assets. Unfortunately, not everyone understands how to construct passwords that actually work to protect the information on the other side. Today, we will discuss how to build a solid password that works to keep your digital resources safe.

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Three Services Your Business Needs, Post-Coronavirus

As businesses slowly open up, they’re finding that their customers and staff have begun to expect certain levels of interactions in response to the coronavirus. When it comes to keeping your business competitive, you need to embrace the clear delineation between how businesses operated pre- and post-coronavirus. What was once temporary has become the new normal. The question is, are you still running your business using the old business model?

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What Reopening Should Look Like to Businesses

As businesses of all kinds either actively reopen or find themselves swiftly approaching that point, the ongoing status of COVID-19 guarantees that these organizations must carefully evaluate how to proceed. With numbers rising at the time of this writing, it is important that you establish the means to protect your employees from infection and illness.

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Business Growth Demands Shifts in Strategy

As an owner of a small business, there are a whole lot of issues that you have to confront every day. Besides the normal issues, there are always situations that pop up without warning. When your business is small and more easily manageable, they are easier to steer one way or another When your business starts growing rapidly, however, turning things around can get more difficult. This can turn into roadblocks to progress. Today, we will look at some of the issues that a small business owner will encounter when their business grows fast.

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Employment Scams Have Recently Exploded

With COVID-19 creating an unsure situation for so many businesses, and by extension their employees, these employees are suddenly finding themselves in a vulnerable position. Regardless of whether or not your employees are able to come into the office right now, it is important that you share the following information with them, as it may help to keep them out of a tough spot.

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You Shouldn’t Slow Your Cybersecurity Spending

COVID-19 has changed the way that most business owners look at a dollar. For months, businesses have been making strategic budget cuts to try to stay afloat. Cybersecurity has been the ultimate growth industry over the past several years, but in the face of the pandemic, the market for these products and services is seeing substantial retraction. In fact, Gartner estimates that in 2020, the cybersecurity industry will shrink by almost $7 billion. Today, we’ll take a look at the cybersecurity market and why it is important not to slow your cybersecurity spending if you can help it.

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How to Host a Watch Party and Watch Hamilton with Friends and Family

Getting tickets to see Hamilton was difficult before the global pandemic. The last time I had checked, ticket prices were over $600 on the low-end, and that was to reserve them 9 months early. With the pandemic, well, it’s just best to stay home.

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When It Comes to Your Technology Policies, Don’t Forget These Three Details

If you haven’t kept your most up-to-date policies and procedures written down somewhere, you absolutely must correct this as soon as possible. A written guide to your business’ policies and procedures is crucial, as it is intended to give your team a resource to turn to for an answer to any questions concerning their employment. Let’s go over some things you must include in your written employee handbook.

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Test Your Backup!

Your data is vital for your organization’s continuity. Your data consists of everything from your company documents, accounting records, client contact information, prospects and leads, procedures, and everything else needed for you to keep operations running smoothly. That’s why all businesses need a solid backup solution that is monitored and tested regularly.

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What We Can Learn from Some Foreboding Security Predictions

With the COVID-19 crisis far from over, many businesses have had their attention pulled away from their cybersecurity needs by the concerns that the current health crisis has generated. Here, we’ll be reviewing some of the observations that a group of 273 cybersecurity professionals have made, courtesy of an annual survey.

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FBI Warns About Banking Scams

In response to the coronavirus pandemic, many people are avoiding human contact by turning to the Internet and mobile apps. On a national scope, mobile banking alone has seen an increase of 50 percent over just the last few months. In what certainly is no coincidence, the Federal Bureau of Investigation recently put out a warning that identified banking apps as likely targets for hackers.

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Your Eyes Will Thank You if You Try This Microsoft Word Dark Mode Trick

If you spend a lot of time in front of a computer, eye strain can be a big problem. Staring at a screen for too long can be irritating, and some even experience headaches and exhaustion from it.

Fortunately, a lot of common applications have been deploying dark or night modes. Microsoft Word’s take on this has been, well, less than desirable. We’ll show you a way around it to help save your eyeballs a lot of strain.

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Tip of the Week: How to Keep Your Wireless Printer Secure

Of all the technology that you have in the office, your printers may not be at the top of your list of security concerns. This is a mistake, as an unprotected printer could easily serve as an access point to someone with less-than-righteous motives. To help correct this, we’re dedicating this week’s tip to improving the security of your printing solutions.

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Automation Will Be Key for Future Businesses

Many businesses have found it extremely hard to cope with restrictions levied by lawmakers because of the COVID-19 pandemic. This has sent business owners and decision makers looking for solutions to their revenue problems. The most popular solution is to automate some of the work that was typically done by human resources to try and slice some of the demands on their capital. Today, we will tell you how automation is here to stay in business. 

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Technology You’ll Need as Your Business Grows

If you are an entrepreneur, changing the way that you look at your business can be pretty difficult. Many businesses start out with not much more than a ray of hope, so if your business is doing well, you must be doing something right. When demand makes you think bigger, your technology spend becomes a major priority. Let’s take a look at some of the changes a growing business has to make. 

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Do You Know How Your Hard Drive Saves Data?

A lot of people never stop and consider how their data is saved. It’s something we all have, from old photos of our family vacations to the files kept on the server back at the office, but not many people know the actual mechanics behind it. Today, we wanted to go over these specifics, and hopefully make it clear why we always advocate for backup practices.

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IT Can Fill In a Lot of Gaps

When the stay-at-home orders were reigning down early in March, people weren’t sure just how long precautionary measures would last. Now that a large percentage of the workforce is either out of work, just returning to work, or working from home after nearly 100 days, it has proven to be one of the most challenging periods for businesses in contemporary business history. Today, we’d like to flip the narrative a bit and talk about three technology solutions that can fix some of your business’ problems in a time when there are plenty to fix.

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Tip of the Week: Time Management at Its Best

You can make more money, but you can’t make more time. Making the most of your time at work isn’t always easy. There are all types of unexpected distractions that take up a lot of time, so you should know what works to help you get the most out of the time you do have. Today, we present three considerations that will help you manage your time better.

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How to Optimize Your IT Costs with the Help of an MSP

A business’ budget is the biggest authority over it. As a result, each business needs to spend some time adjusting their operational investments to put itself in the best position to reach its goals… a process that a managed service provider’s help can make much simpler. Let’s review some ways that an MSP can help a business get that much more out of its investment into its IT.

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Reopen Your Business with Confidence

As the COVID-19 pandemic rolls on, many businesses continue to operate remotely with an eye toward reopening their office soon. Today, we thought it would be a perfect time to go over a couple of things that small business owners will need to address as people begin coming back into the workplace. 

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Alert: Hackers Target Mobile Banking Apps, Warns FBI

More people than ever are utilizing the conveniences of the Internet and mobile apps to avoid unnecessary human contact during the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, mobile banking alone has increased by 50 percent over the last few months, nationwide. In a recent PSA, the FBI warned that hackers are likely to be targeting mobile banking apps.

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Why You Need to Consider How Your Data is Stored

If you have a computer, it has data on it that you’ve stored. Whether it’s the novel you’ve been working on in your spare time or pictures from your kid’s sixth grade graduation on your home PC, or the databases and applications that your business’ infrastructure supports, all of this data is generally stored in exactly the same way. Whatever your case, you should know that your data is terrifyingly fragile - far too fragile to ever be kept in just one place. Let’s dive deeper.

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Why You Need to Audit Your Security

A security audit is designed to test the overall integrity of your business when it comes to its IT security. In today’s environment, businesses need to have strengthened fortifications in place to protect themselves from cyberthreats, and these fortifications need to be properly tested and reviewed over time. Let’s talk about some of the types of audits and their benefits, and how you can assess your security.

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4 Excuses Businesses Should Stop Using When it Comes to Social Media

As the owner of a business, one of your number one tasks is to grow your business. Simply put, without the revenue new contacts bring in, you’ll likely grow stagnant. While word of mouth is great, there is a limit to how many people you can meet. You have to market, advertise, and promote your services to reach a wider audience. In terms of reach, social media can provide access to a nearly unlimited source of leads. 

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Tip of the Week: How to Encourage Remote Collaboration

Recent events have shown how useful a remote workforce can prove to be, but this method of maintaining productivity isn’t without its challenges. For instance, a staff that is used to working side-by-side in an office may have difficulties in adjusting to this new work paradigm. Fortunately, there are a few company activities that can help make better remote habits stick. Let’s go over a few for this week’s tip.

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Tip of the Week: How to React When Your Workspace Shifts

While it seems that some business will best be conducted remotely for some time yet, it is still very important to start planning for a return to in-house operations now. This will help them to hit the ground running when the floodgates open back up. For this week’s tip, we’re going over how to return to the office after working remotely, while also reviewing some best practices for adjusting to remote work (just in case).

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PCI Compliance and Your Business

The days of the cash-only business are over. It doesn’t matter if your business is a multinational corporation or you cut grass for a living, accepting payment cards is not only convenient for your customers, most of the time it’s the most secure way to get paid. In an effort to protect the personal and financial information of consumers who have come to depend on their payment cards, the banks that back the credit card industry have developed a regulation that businesses who process cards need to adhere to. Today, we will go over this regulation and how it affects small and medium-sized businesses

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Business Improvements to Consider as You Resume Operations

Businesses are now in the process of reopening. While there are sure to be growing pains and setbacks, this also provides an opportunity for these businesses to make many adjustments and improvements to how they operate. As you reignite your operations (or make the preparations to), it will help to do so with the support of modern technology and the processes it enables.

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What We Can Learn from the 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report

Starting in 2008, Verizon has produced a report outlining the cybersecurity incident trends that the previous year demonstrated. In doing so, they have provided a resource that gives businesses greater insights into where their cybersecurity efforts need to be focused. Let’s go over some of 2019’s trends and insights that were highlighted in the Verizon Business 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR).

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