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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.

Going Digital Saves Money on Document Storage and Collaboration

A successful business thrives on building beneficial relationships, which generates a lot of data and contracts that need to be efficiently shared and stored. While this might seem straightforward, leveraging today’s technology can significantly cut down on filing costs and enhance file-sharing efficiency. Let’s explore how.

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Do You Know Exactly What is Being Backed Up?

Data backup is essential for any business, yet many employees might not fully understand how it works or what gets backed up. Today, let's clarify the basics of data backup and its importance.

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Machine Learning Explained

Emerging technologies offer significant opportunities for businesses to achieve their goals. However, understanding how and when to leverage these technologies is crucial. One of the most rapidly advancing technologies today is artificial intelligence (AI). Yet, AI encompasses more than what one might initially think. Many of the most impactful business tools are powered by a branch of AI called machine learning (ML). This month's newsletter delves into machine learning, its mechanics, and its applications within a business context.

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Big Data Initiatives Can Give You a Better Idea on the Best Ways to Run Your Business

Big data is now a crucial resource for businesses of all sizes, including small enterprises. Today, businesses have unprecedented access to vast amounts of data, enabling them to make more informed decisions and operate more efficiently. This month’s newsletter explores how small businesses harness big data's power.

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Big Data, Small Business

Big data has become an invaluable asset, not just for large corporations but also for small businesses. Using the vast amounts of data your business creates to help you make more effective decisions is easier than ever. In this month’s newsletter, we’ll look at how small businesses are tapping into the power of big data:

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You May Not Think You’re Popular, but Your Data Certainly Is

Data is extremely important in the way that most businesses conduct themselves. This results in other people wanting that information, too. Today’s blog will look at how seemingly everyone online is out for your data. 

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How to Use Business Analytics to Fast-Track Success

Data is at the heart of all successful modern businesses. The information you collect and store can help you make better decisions, plan better strategies, and gain a competitive advantage. Let’s look at how your raw data can be refined into more meaningful insights through the use of business analytics tools.

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What You Need to Know About Your Personally Identifiable Information

Hackers are always on the lookout for personally identifiable information, or PII, as it’s an immensely lucrative resource. You’ll need to protect it if you want your business to continue operating safely and efficiently. Let’s go over what PII entails and what kinds of data you might find under this term.

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Encryption is a Tool All Businesses Should Use

You might see encryption as a major benefit to your cybersecurity strategy, but it’s often used in a way that might have you guessing whether you really understand it. Let’s take a closer look into what encryption does to your data, as well as why it is essential for any business to ensure maximum privacy and security.

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How to Prioritize Security in File Sharing

Business file sharing has become a daily routine. It's a crucial part of collaboration, communication, and overall productivity. However, with the rise of cyberthreats, file security is more important than ever. It's not just about sharing files but doing it securely and efficiently. Today, we'll look at some best practices for business file sharing.

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Why It’s Good to Purge Your Digital Waste

So, what is digital waste?

Digital waste is all the useless data in our data storage that lingers until we do something with it. Extra files no longer needed, old emails and chats, and old, blurry pictures you never have and will never use… all qualify as digital waste. While it’s easy to discount digital waste as an annoyance (which it certainly can be), it creates a much bigger and more serious problem.

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What Do Firewalls Really Do?

Firewalls are a mainstay of network security. At its core, the firewall acts as a barrier between a trusted internal network and untrusted external networks, such as the Internet. Its primary function is to monitor and control incoming and outgoing network traffic based on predetermined security rules. Think of the firewall as a gatekeeper scrutinizing every packet of data that attempts to pass through. Let’s take a look at the different types of firewalls and some of their key functions.

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Some of the Best Practices for Internal File Sharing

Ensuring that your organization's file-sharing policies and procedures are built to enhance security can significantly impact collaboration, distinguishing between efficient, streamlined processes and time-purging, wasteful practices. Navigating this terrain can be a challenge. Let’s explore several best practices your organization can adopt to optimize file-sharing.

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Net Neutrality Seems Poised to Return in Upcoming FCC Vote — Here’s Why It Should

The topic of net neutrality has had a tumultuous past few years, with steps forward canceled out by steps taken back. However, new efforts are being considered to restore the policies that made net neutrality what it was in the first place.

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Big Tech is Bigger Than You Realize

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

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Three of the Biggest Security Solutions You Might Not Be Using

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

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3 Types of Regulations Your Business Should Be Aware Of

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

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3 Success Metrics for Your Business Technology

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

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Artificial Intelligence is Only as Unbiased as Its Data

Over the past few years, artificial intelligence has become a bona fide buzzword amongst businesses of all sizes, with 97% of respondents to a Forbes survey seeing a potential benefit in some way, shape, or form. However, with it being integrated everywhere in our modern lives, it is important that we remember that AI is still a human invention, as such, it is vulnerable to our own implicit biases.

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3 IT Metrics to Pay Attention To

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

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

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Make Sure You Share These Cybersecurity Tips with Everyone You Know

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

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

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

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What Types of Data Do You Need to Pay Attention To

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

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

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

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Don’t Share Sensitive Data in Emails

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

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How You Backup Your Data is a Crucial Consideration

Data Backup and Disaster Recovery are essential components of any modern business. As businesses become increasingly reliant on digital data, it's essential to have strategies in place to ensure that your data is safe and secure in the event of a disaster. Let’s cover the key components of an effective Disaster Recovery strategy to ensure the safety of your business' data backup. Read on to learn more about Disaster Recovery strategies and how to best protect your business data.

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The NY State of Health Enrollment Period Presents the Opportunity for Scams

With the end of the year upon us, New York State’s health insurance markets and assorted health plans are open. Current enrollees received renewal reminders a few weeks ago, prompting them to act before their coverage lapses.

Unfortunately, as is often the case in such situations, this urgency has given scammers the opportunity to target New Yorkers trying to maintain their insurance coverage.

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Implement Zero Trust Policies to Combat Ransomware

With ransomware becoming one of the single most dangerous threats out there for small businesses, it’s more important than ever to know how to protect your company from its influence. Thankfully, there are measures you can take, including some very powerful ones like zero-trust policies that can thwart attempted ransomware attacks.

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Are Your Recovery Expectations Lined Up with Your Capabilities?

Your business’ backup and disaster recovery preparations are a critical part of your continued success as an organization, specifically, how they are measured by two key metrics: your recovery time objective (RTO) and your recovery point objective (RPO).

However, it’s important that you are able to determine what your organization can support in terms of your recovery time and recovery point objectives… but how does one do that?

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Don’t Take Any Chances: Get a VPN Today

With data security being a hot commodity with hackers, it’s no surprise that businesses want to do everything they can to protect their assets. One method for doing so is implementing a Virtual Private Network, or VPN, that can effectively obfuscate data while it’s in transit. Let’s go over some of the most valuable reasons why your business should be using a VPN.

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The Problems that Cybercrime Can Pose for Business

Unfortunately for small businesses, cyberthreats aren't limited to large corporations and enterprises. Even small businesses and local shops face the constant risk of cyberattacks. Let's take a look into some concerning statistics regarding one of the fastest-growing cyberthreats.

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How Data Shapes Your Business Priorities

Over the course of a year, a month, or even a single day, your business accumulates and utilizes a lot of data. You need systems in place to make good use of this data, otherwise your business is leaving efficiency on the table. Today we want to go over some proper uses for your data and how to make the most of this golden opportunity.

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Critical Security Measures for Data Privacy

These days, data privacy is absolutely critical in both a business and individual context. In some locations, governments have introduced legislation to protect consumers, and in others, there is significant pushback in favor of fewer regulations on business. How does data privacy factor into your business’ operations?

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Important Statistics to Keep in Mind Concerning Your Cybersecurity

It is so important to keep your business secure nowadays. Statistics show this to be the case. Don’t believe us? We can share a few of these stats and explore what they mean, just to prove it.

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New Technology Can Bring New Perspectives

Your customers expect not to be inconvenienced when doing business with your organization. Small businesses can use new technology to meet these expectations by offering online ordering, mobile apps, and e-commerce platforms. Such innovations not only improve the customer experience but also expand a business' reach. Let’s look at some of the ways new technology can improve your business.

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Ransomware is One Problem that Leads to Many More

There are a lot of threats to businesses nowadays, but ransomware seems to be the worst… or at least, the most feared. It seems as though we can’t mention cyberthreats anymore without mentioning ransomware. Unfortunately, we’re right to do so, and the reason for this is a simple one.

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What’s the Deal With the Blockchain?

With things like cryptocurrencies and NFTs flooding the public awareness, the term “blockchain” has been brought up more than a few times. However, this association hardly covers what the blockchain is or what it is capable of.

Let’s briefly review what the blockchain really is, and what the technology can do.

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Sports Franchises All-In on Data Analytics

Sports franchises have changed the way they use data to help them strategize. In the past, businesses used basic scouting to find and develop talent, but with the use of advanced analytics, not only can sports franchises improve their talent bases, they can save money and build a competitive advantage over organizations that aren’t so analytically inclined. 

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Sports Franchises Rely Heavily on Analytics

Professional sports has witnessed a significant shift in the way teams and organizations approach their strategies. Gone are the days when gut instinct and intuition were the sole driving forces behind decisions. Nowadays, sports are increasingly relying on analytics to gain a competitive edge. In this week’s blog, we explore the growing influence of analytics in sports and the ways in which data-driven insights have revolutionized the game.

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The Cloud is Only Helpful if It’s Secure

We have not been shy about expounding upon the benefits of the cloud for businesses, as these benefits are both considerable and accessible. That being said, not even the cloud is completely perfect, and there are security errors that can easily be made.

Let’s go through these security errors to see if any sound familiar to your situation.

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FTC Safeguards Gets a Crucial Update

The United States Federal Trade Commission’s mandate is to prevent fraud and promote consumer protection in today's interconnected world, where the digital landscape continues to evolve at a rapid pace. The FTC recognizes the importance of safeguarding consumer information and has implemented their Safeguards Rule as a means to ensure that businesses protect sensitive data from unauthorized access and misuse. Let’s take a look at the Safeguards Rule and what you need to know about it in regard to your business. 

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Could Zero-Trust Make the VPN Obsolete? Experts Suggest So

When it comes to security, it can be challenging to keep up with shifting best practices. For instance, the use of a virtual private network has long been a staple to secure remote operations, and any decent IT service provider would recommend its use. However, this advice is changing with the growth of zero-trust access protocols.

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What We Can All Learn from the VirusTotal Data Leak

In 2004, a service called VirusTotal was launched and swiftly became a popular antivirus and malware scanner to help detect threats in various files and URLs. It became popular enough that it was officially acquired by Google in 2012 and ultimately assimilated into Chronicle, a cloud-based security operations suite for enterprise businesses. Despite this impressive pedigree, however, we find ourselves able to look to VirusTotal as a sobering reminder of how fickle cybersecurity can be, with the service being the source of some limited data exposure.

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The Reasons Why Hackers Can’t Keep Their Hands Off Healthcare Data

When it comes to valuable data, hackers will go out of their way to try and steal it, placing businesses in dangerous situations. In particular, healthcare data is attractive to hackers, and considering how lucrative the prospect of healthcare data is, companies need to take extra precautions to protect it. But what is it about healthcare data that makes it so attractive, anyway? Let’s dig into the consequences of potential attacks on healthcare data.

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Creating a Powerful Backup Strategy

Data is the lifeblood of a business. In the event of unforeseen circumstances such as hardware failure, malware attacks, or human error, having a well-designed backup and data recovery strategy in place becomes paramount. Today, we try and guide you through the process of creating a robust backup and data recovery strategy, ensuring the safety and accessibility of your data.

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Tip of the Week: Using People Graph in Microsoft Excel

Microsoft Excel is a great way for data to be visualized, particularly as it offers various features to highlight the context of the data you’re trying to communicate with. Today, we wanted to walk you through how you can use one such feature—People Graphs—to do so particularly impactfully.

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Keeping Your Data Stored Centrally Offers Significant Benefits

Let me ask you: how confident are you that all of your data is in your control? How confident are you that you have access to it as you need it? How confident are you that it is properly secured, wherever it is being stored?

These are all important, arguably critical, questions to know the answer to. They are also all questions that are best answered by storing your data centrally.

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How Schofield’s Laws of Computing Can Benefit Your Business’ Security

There are quite a few platitudes that we support, in terms of business IT. Some that we haven’t really touched on, however, are Schofield's Laws of Computing. Let’s fix that today by reviewing where they came from, and what these laws entail.

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What is a BDR and Why Does Your Organization Need One?

Data backup always sounds like a simple process, but if you truly want to rely on your backup, it needs to be absolutely infallible. That is the objective behind an IT appliance known as the BDR, which stands for Backup and Disaster Recovery.

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For Records and Information Management Month, Consider Your Own Data Practices

Back in 1995, the Association of Records Managers and Administrators were in the midst of campaigning for the renewal of the Paperwork Reduction Act. As a part of their efforts, they created National Records and Information Management Day. Over the years since, it has expanded into a week, and then into an entire month, for businesses around the world to consider their record-keeping practices.

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How to Configure a Reliable Backup and Disaster Recovery Setup for Your Business

Did you know that World Backup Day is in just a few short weeks? While it is an important occasion for businesses to recognize, data backup should really be something you think about all the time. This is because your backup is an integral part of the backup and disaster recovery portion of your overall business continuity.

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Your Business Can Get a Lot of Use from Data

Businesses can now capture and use more data to help them run an efficient business than ever before. That’s not to say a lot of businesses actually do. In this month’s newsletter, we thought we’d discuss the use of data and how it can be used to improve your business.

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What’s the Line Between a Security Breach, and a Data Breach?

When security breaches and data breaches are mentioned in the same breath so often, it’s easy to look at them as one and the same. However, we want to take a moment to explain the differentiating factors between the two, as it could be all the most important for protecting your business in the future.

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Migrating Data? Budget in Evaluating End Result

There’s no beating around the bush with this one; moving data from one place to another, also known as data migration, is critical to get right the first time. If you create and follow a migration strategy, evaluating here and there to make sure it’s all going according to plan, you’ll see great success in this effort. Let’s go over how you can make it happen.

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What’s Your Business Continuity Strategy for 2023?

When you suffer a data breach, you might wonder how you can possibly come back from such an event, especially if it leads to a network compromise. Can your business rebound effectively, and if so, what do you need to do to make sure that it doesn’t happen again? It all starts with understanding how much data you need to function, as well as how much downtime you can afford to suffer from.

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How to Add Dropdown Menus to Your Business Spreadsheets

Modern spreadsheet programs, like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets, carry a plethora of functions under the surface that—if used correctly—can take their utility to another level. For instance, the cells in your spreadsheets can be turned into dropdown menus. Let’s go over how to do so in both Excel and Sheets.

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Why the High Costs of Data Privacy are Worth Every Penny

We aren’t going to try and pretend that the investments necessary to preserve your business’ data security are small ones. Especially at first glance, you may very well start to question if such an investment is truly necessary.

The simple fact of the matter is that, compared to the costs that a breach of privacy will incur, the investment you put into your security measures will suddenly seem like a real bargain.

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What Exactly is Personally Identifiable Information?

It’s incredibly important to keep your personally identifiable information secure, but what exactly constitutes PII? Today we offer a definition and suggestions or strategies to help you keep your PII safe.

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Digital Data is Amazing, Part 2

Last time, we broke down how much data is stored in a typical book, and how much data every book in the Library of Congress contains. This time, let’s really show you what that data consists of, and some other really neat comparisons to put things into perspective. Buckle up!

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Digital Data is Amazing, Part 1

Do you ever think about how incredible technology is? In a world where it’s easy to take advantage of technology and devices that were practically inconceivable just a few short decades ago, it’s really amazing to just look at how far we’ve come, and how something so small can fit so much information.

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The Tell-Tale Hard Drive

If Edgar Allan Poe worked in an office, here’s what one of his works would sound like:

True!—nervous—very, very dreadfully nervous I have been and am, but why will you say that I am mad? The office had sharpened my senses—not destroyed—not dulled them. Above all was my sense of hearing. I heard all things in heaven and on earth and many things in…the other place. So, how then am I mad, especially when I can so healthily and calmly tell you this story?

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Protecting Your Data is Easier Through Network Segmentation

As Miguel de Cervantes wrote in Don Quixote, “...is the part of a wise man to keep himself today for tomorrow, and not venture all his eggs in one basket.” It was wise advice then, and it’s wise advice now—especially when it comes to your business’ network and your data security.

Let’s explore the concept of network segmentation, and how it can help to protect your business.

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Here Are Some of the Best Ways to Limit Vulnerabilities

No matter how well you protect your network, chances are you’ll suffer from some vulnerability or another. That said, you can take considerable measures toward protecting your business so you don’t have to worry so much about them. Let’s discuss how your efforts today can protect your business now and in the future.

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Hundreds of Applications Could Potentially Expose Data Through Basic Errors

At the beginning of September, it was revealed that a relatively simple issue existed in nearly 2,000 mobile applications that potentially exposed some (read: a lot of) sensitive data. Let’s take a brief, basic look at the situation to see if there are any lessons that can apply to your business.

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Are Your Apps Broadcasting Your Exact Location?

Mobile devices have become a key part of our daily lives, to the point that many of us openly feel undressed without our phones. As a result, our phones go everywhere with us. However, it’s important to remember that some applications have requested access to our location information. Do all of these apps need to know precisely where we are?

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What Actually Happens to Deleted Data?

Chances are, you’ve gone through some old files and weeded through them, deleting what is no longer needed. This is especially important when you are upgrading your storage and getting rid of your existing storage media or an old computer. Let’s talk about what really happens when you’re doing so—chances are, you may be overlooking a serious security issue.

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The Blockchain is a Fascinating Technology with a Lot of Potential

The blockchain has had a single purpose since it was first developed back in 1991, and that has simply been as a secure means of storing data. Its method of doing so is fascinating, so let’s examine the concept and all that it now allows us to do.

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Is Cyber Insurance Worth It? (Spoiler Alert: It Is)

Insurance is a great asset, should you ever need it… including where your business technology is concerned. If you weren’t aware, there is a form of insurance—cyber insurance—that you can purchase in case your business suffers from a data breach.

Is this additional form of insurance worth the investment? Absolutely.

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How Does Streaming Technology Work?

It feels like streaming is everywhere these days, from video content to music to video games. Coincidentally, it also happens that innovations in cloud streaming have allowed these entertainment mediums to flourish in “as-a-service” type offerings. Just how have the innovations in technology allowed streaming services to grow and expand? Let’s investigate.

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To Maintain Your Cybersecurity, You Need to Understand Your Risks

Since it is our belief that our clients are under constant threat of being the next business hit with a cyberattack, we maintain a pretty aggressive security posture. That’s not to say that all threats are created equal. That’s why it is important to assess risk over the types of attacks and threats you have to confront and plan accordingly. 

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So, What the Heck is an NFT, Really?

The blockchain and cryptocurrency have collected no small amount of attention over the past few years, with another trend arising—that of the non-fungible token, or NFT. Could this trend be one that businesses could benefit from?

Let’s examine what an NFT is, in actuality.

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How to Create a Risk Management Process for Your Cybersecurity

We’ve been known to take a bit of an extreme approach to cybersecurity—your business is at constant threat of being attacked by all manners of threats and all that. While we stand by this approach as an effective way to boost awareness and adherence to cybersecurity needs, there are certain attacks that are more likely to target you. This is where risk management comes into play.

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Analytics can Change Your Business Like It has Changed Baseball

It’s almost summer, which means baseball is in full swing. The game that many of us grew up on has recently gone through a major shift; one that small business owners can replicate to help their organizations. It came about through the use of data and today we’ll discuss how the national pastime has changed and how you can use the same strategies to help make your business better. 

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What Would You Do in Response to a Breach?

While we—for reasons that should be obvious—tend to focus our attention on preventing and avoiding cybersecurity breaches, it is important that we address how your business responds to a successful breach attempt. Let’s go over how to create a data breach response plan.

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What Most Often Leads to a Data Breach?

Data breaches—any event where a business’ confidential data is viewed, copied, or stolen by an unauthorized person or party—are a serious problem. Unfortunately, they are also a serious problem that can be caused by no shortage of situations. Let’s review some of the causes of business data breaches so you’ll know what to keep an eye out for.

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With a Managed Service Provider, Every Day is Backup Day

Tomorrow, March 31st, is the official World Backup Day, a day intended to remind us all of the importance of taking backups for the sake of data continuity. While this kind of day can be a valuable reminder of a critical best practice, we contend that your awareness of your backup (and the associated maintenance of it) should not be limited to a single day.

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What You Need to Know to Get Through a Data Disaster

A disaster recovery plan is a strategy that allows a business to return to normal after a disruption of some type. Some data disasters are brought on by outside attacks, some are the result of a natural disaster or environmental issue, and some are simply a return to normal after an internal problem interferes with business operations. Today, we’ll take a look at a few things you need to know about disaster recovery to help you mitigate the negative effects of a data disaster. 

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Don’t Miss World Backup Day (But Don’t Wait For It, Either)

World Backup Day is March 31st, each and every year. However, while there is value to having a dedicated holiday to raise awareness of the need for backup, it should not be the only time it is considered. Let’s go over the importance of proper backup practices, just in time for the holiday, so that you can establish the backup that your business needs if it's not already in place.

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How to Fight Back Against Cloud-Based Cybercrime

The cloud is far and away one of the most beneficial technologies that a modern business has at its disposal. Unfortunately, the same can be said for modern cybercriminals. The cloud has given cybercriminals new opportunities that are important to acknowledge—as well, of course, to protect your business against.

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Ransomware is Only Getting Worse in 2022… So What Can You Do?

Ransomware has been commonplace for years, with no sign of it going anywhere anytime soon. Let’s take a few moments to examine the state of ransomware right now, and review how to keep it from impacting your businesses.

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Artificial Intelligence Can Bring Healthcare Some Welcome Advances

Healthcare is an industry that—quite understandably—operates under very high pressure for a significant share of the time. As a result, it is only natural to conclude that a technology that could potentially make the lives of healthcare providers and administrators easier in numerous ways shows some promise. That technology is artificial intelligence.

Let’s go over a few of the many ways that AI has been proposed (if not implemented already) as a solution to some of healthcare’s more challenging stresses.

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What’s the Difference Between a Security Incident and a Breach?

Cybersecurity is an important subject for a business’ entire team to appreciate, particularly when it comes to the minute differences between different terms. For instance, a layperson might hear “breach” and automatically think “security incident.” While this technically isn’t incorrect, per se, the two terms aren’t really synonymous.

Let’s take a few moments to dive into the minutiae and define these two terms more clearly.

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What You Can Do to Make Your Cloud Resources More Secure

Look, we are big fans of the cloud, especially for data storage, but you shouldn’t implement the cloud without a solid security strategy. Whether you are using it for your business’ data storage needs or just to take backups of your infrastructure, you’ll still need to keep various facets of security in mind for your cloud storage. It all starts with figuring out how secure your cloud provider really is.

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The Small Business Guide for Preparing for Disaster

tornado

It's the start of the 2011 hurricane season, and with Hurricane Irene making contact with Atlantic coastlines this week, it certainly doesn't hurt to make sure your business is prepared for a disaster. Even if you are lucky enough to not be affected by these devastating storms, there are plenty of opportunities for nature to cause havoc on our way of life. It's never to late to put together a Disaster Recovery Plan (alternatively known as a Business Continuity Plan) in case a natural (or otherwise) disaster were to occur for you. Nobody wants to think a disaster might happen, but it isn't impossible. Here are a few steps small businesses can take to become better prepared.

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Use Technology to Transform Your Business

Sometimes it might feel like you can’t possibly take advantage of the same technologies as a large enterprise, but the reality is that the difference between the two has largely diminished thanks to changes in business technology models and design philosophies. Simply put, there are technologies out there that let you compete with organizations you may not have been able to in the past, and if you can track your analytics, provide a quality service or experience to your customers, and implement the right technology solutions, you are on the right track.

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Encryption: What It Is, and How It Works

Keeping your data protected is a huge concern nowadays, with more and more safeguards needed to prevent it from being exfiltrated. Encryption is a great way to prevent your data from being any good to those who might steal it. Let’s review what encryption is, and delve into how it works in practice.

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So, Your Data Was Breached… What Do You Do Now?

Data breaches are an unfortunate reality in this day and age, even during the holiday season. While it is important to do everything you can to prevent these kinds of disasters, you need to be prepared to deal with it—both in terms of your operations, and in terms of communicating with your clientele.

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Enhancing the Customer Experience with the Right IT

Whether you refer to them as clients or customers, the people who act as patrons to your business are essential to its success and survival. This means that you need to keep them as happy as possible. While there are many aspects of maintaining a high level of customer service, we wanted to take a bit of time to examine how deploying the right technology can assist your business in doing just that.

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4 Ways to Use Data for Growing Your Business

All businesses collect data of some sort, whether it’s for the purposes of storing customer information or product specifications. However, not all businesses understand the importance of this data; in fact, you could be sitting on countless opportunities for growth without even realizing it. Here are some ways that you can take commonly procured data and transform it into actionable steps for growth.

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If Your Google Drive Links Stop Working, It Might Be Due to an Update

While we cannot express how important it is to update your software and hardware in a timely manner, it is important to keep in mind that some of these updates aren’t going to be perfect. An upcoming update to Google Workspace serves as the perfect example, as the company has recently released an alert to inform users about an issue affecting Google Drive.

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Fast Food Data Breach is Another in Line of Major Cyberattacks

It seems that the last few months have been filled with major cyberattacks, particularly those taking advantage of major businesses that might not initially be considered targets for these kinds of acts. For instance, McDonald’s Restaurants was recently breached. Let’s examine the situation, and how it plays into the recent trends we’ve witnessed. 

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A Basic Understanding of Informatics

Many professionals see the word “informatics” and think of one of two things. First, what the heck is it? Second, isn’t that just computer science? While the two certainly are similar and often used interchangeably, they are quite different. Let’s take a deeper dive and see what the field of informatics entails, how it can be applied to computer science and business, and why it’s important to consider for your organization.

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Additional Considerations for Your Business’ Data Backup Strategy

We routinely discuss the importance of a comprehensive data backup strategy. With so many workforces incorporating remote work into their operations, making such preparations is extremely important. Let’s go over some of the key steps that you need to take to secure your business’ data from loss.

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Understanding the Different Kinds of Blockchain and Their Purpose

The blockchain has made quite a splash, beginning as the technology that powers Bitcoin before branching out into different use cases that many businesses are already taking advantage of. Let’s go over the benefits—and shortcomings—of the various varieties that blockchain now comes in, and how they are commonly used.

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Maps May Soon Be Less Trustworthy Than Ever

Did you know that maps as we know them are remarkably skewed? Due to some centuries-old superiority complexes and prejudices, the maps we’ve all been raised looking at have never been completely accurate. However, this problem could soon be an element of cybercrime thanks to a developing technology that many have yet to take seriously, deepfake images, and how they could revolutionize cyberattacks moving forward.

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Tip of the Week: Three Steps to Better Backups

Because of the protection it can offer your organization, data backup is a necessary tool for you to have—that is, provided it has the requisite security and reliability you’ll need should you ever have to lean on it. Let’s go over a few guidelines to help you be sure that your backup is trustworthy enough to stake your business’ future on.

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What We Can Learn from Coca-Cola’s Insider Trade Secret Theft

Your business’ data is perhaps its most crucial resource—which is why it is so important that it remains protected against all threats (including those that come from within your own business). Consider, for a moment, the ongoing trial of Xiaorong You, going on in Greenville, Tennessee. Accused of stealing trade secrets and committing economic espionage, You allegedly stole various BPA-free technologies from various companies—including Coca-Cola and the Eastman Chemical Company, amongst others—to the tune of $119.6 million.

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Facebook’s Massive Data Leak

Facebook is many people’s favorite—or at least most used—app and it does bring value to people by letting them keep tabs on friends and family, or grow their businesses. It has grown to be one of the largest, most successful software technology companies in the world. Unfortunately, with that type of exposure comes the responsibility of securing massive amounts of personal data. In this quest, they leave a lot to be decided. Today, we take a look at the situation Facebook is in as they are dealing with one of the largest data leaks in history.

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The Long and Short of Data Backup

Having a comprehensive data backup and recovery strategy in place can absolutely save your business. This means it’s extremely important. Unfortunately, too many businesses don’t consider their backup and recovery systems until it is too late. Let’s unwrap what makes a successful backup and recovery platform work, and how to get one for your business.

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What Your Employees Need to Know to Keep Their Own Data Secure, Too

It is only too common for people to have very different personalities in the office as they do during their off hours, with different standards and practices to suit them. While there is absolutely nothing wrong with that on the surface, you need to be sure that they are at least upholding the kind of security best practices that you expect of them in the office while they are at home.

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