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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.

Setting Android’s Security Options

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

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Your Business May Be Most Vulnerable from the Inside

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

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Tech Term: Zero-Day

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

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Bing Offers Malware and Filth

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

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Uber Demonstrates the Importance of Disclosing a Data Breach

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

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The Internet of Things Continues to Expand

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

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reCAPTCHA: The First Line of Defense

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

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Cloud-Based Security Is Concerning for Small Businesses

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

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Windows 10 Itself Helps Keep You Secure

Windows 10 is the most utilized operating system on PCs today. As a result, Microsoft has made it a priority to take on some of today’s most prevalent threats. We’ll go through these security features based on the state of the computer’s usage to get a better idea of how much is done to improve your security.

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October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month

It’s October, and time again for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to bring extra attention to the issue of security. This year there is a focus on the personal and professional interactions that intersect in the virtual space. The more these two worlds become connected, the more likely the possibility of a hacker gaining access to one or both worlds, using access they acquired from one or the other.

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Is It Safe to Have Your Browser Remember Your Passwords?

Let’s be honest - not all of us have the best memories. This makes the ability for many browsers to remember our passwords seem like a godsend. However, is this capability actually a good thing for your cybersecurity? The answer may not surprise you.

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Tip of the Week: How to Spot a Scam

What would you do if you sat down at your desk one morning, coffee still kicking in, to discover a pop-up message on your computer announcing that Microsoft has detected a fatal issue with your workstation, and if they aren’t allowed to remote in and fix it, the entire network could be at risk? Would you be able to, in the heat of the moment, recognize it for the scam that it is and disregard it?

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Faxploit: Hundreds of Printers Putting Businesses at Risk of Malware

Printers, along with every other piece of equipment that is on your network, require careful configuration and regular upkeep to ensure that they aren’t putting your data and users at risk. Security researchers recently discovered two massive vulnerabilities in HP Officejet All-in-One printers that make it incredibly easy for hackers to spread malware and gain access to a company’s network.

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Data Security Issues of 2018

Each year there are changes that need to be made in the way that organizations manage their IT security. In 2017, ransomware burst on the scene in full force, and cyber security strategies reacted, coming up with fully managed security platform that remediate issues better, and cost organizations far more than they would have spent on IT security just a short time ago. In 2018, the same problems persist, while other developing technologies threaten the natural order of things. Today, we will look at how cybersecurity is being approached in 2018.

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Protect Your Business From Phishing Attacks

Spam is a major hindrance when running a business that relies on email, but it’s easy to protect your employee’s time from the average spam messages with the right technological support. Unfortunately, hackers have adapted to this change and made it more difficult to identify scam emails. More specifically, they have turned to customizing their spam messages to hit specific individuals within organizations.

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Tech Term: Hacker

The term “hacker” is possibly one of the best-known technology-related terms there is, thanks to popular culture. Properties like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the Die Hard franchise have given the layman a distinct impression of what a hacker is. Unfortunately, this impression isn’t always accurate. Here, we’ll discuss what real-life hackers are like, and the different varieties there are.

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Your Emails Won’t Be Secure Without these Safeguards

Are your employees putting your organization’s security at risk due to poor email practices? This is a question that all business owners need to consider--especially if you deal in sensitive information. We recommend that all businesses utilize a two-pronged approach to email security, including both technology measures to secure communications on the technical side and training to secure on the human side.

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Getting to Know Technology: Hackers

It doesn’t matter how much of a technology novice someone is, chances are, they’ve heard the term “hacker” before. A favorite character trope of Hollywood films and television dramas, these cybercriminals have appeared in productions like Die Hard and Mr. Robot with varying degrees of accuracy. Below, we explore what makes a hacker, and the kinds that exist in reality.

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Monitoring Pros and Cons

Dealing with other people, whether in the office or a home environment, can often be troublesome. There is always a case of someone trying to be better than someone else, or trying to take advantage of their naiveté. There are solutions out there that make it easier than ever to help keep your home and business safe. Here are some of the best out there.

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Would You Fall for this Adult Scam if You Saw an Old Password?

As you may expect, the average Internet scammer isn’t above resorting to dirty tricks to claim their ill-gotten prize from their victims. A recent scam demonstrates just how dirty these tricks can truly be, and unfortunately, how ill-prepared many are to handle them.

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Want to Keep Your “Personal” Browsing a Secret? Scam Says: Pay Up!

A new email scam is making its rounds and it has a lot of people concerned with just how much a hacker can peer into one’s private life. How would you react if a stranger emailed you saying they had inappropriate webcam footage of you?

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How the IoT Can Be a Security Risk

The Internet of Things means a lot more than just enhanced connectivity. In particular, you’ll have a considerable security risk associated with the Internet of Things. It’s clear that the more devices accessing a network, the more risk will be associated with that network, which is where the inherent risk of the Internet of Things comes into play. How can you control the number of devices accessing your network, and thus secure your business from the Internet of Things?

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Facebook Makes Two-Factor Authentication Easier

If you use Facebook, you likely have a lot of personal information stored there. If you use it for your business, then your professional reputation also partially relies on what you put into the social network. If you aren’t protecting your Facebook account, you could be at risk for identity theft or worse. That’s why using two-factor authentication on your social media accounts is becoming more important than ever.

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Is Your Password Policy A Security Risk?

With every successful intrusion and theft of data, the images of hackers as criminal masterminds and unstoppable forces of technology gone awry grow. In fact, there’s an increasing narrative that hackers are everywhere, just waiting to use their mad ‘skillz’ to steal your credit card information and buy their limited edition dolls, sorry, “action figures.” Worse, they’re just waiting to hold your data hostage and extort ransom from your business.

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Some Providers are Offering Blockchain as a Service

There’s a big risk associated with implementing any new technology solution for your organization. For one, it’s difficult to know how a specific solution will run without first implementing it. This leads many businesses to avoid implementing a new solution for fear that it won’t be worth the investment. On the other hand, if they fail to implement a new solution, they could potentially lose out on valuable new tools they could use to succeed. How can you get around this issue?

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Reexamining Meltdown and Spectre

It’s been about a year and a half since the Meltdown and Spectre exploits became publicly known. While patches and updates were administered to reduce their threat, they continue to linger on in a less serious capacity. Of course, this doesn’t mean that the threat has entirely been neutered--you still want to know what these threats do and whether or not you’re safe from them.

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The Blockchain May Soon Protect Your Entire Identity

Blockchain is one of the latest and greatest developments to come in computing. The spotlight is on Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, Dogecoin, and several other cryptocurrencies that take advantage of the blockchain, but it’s important to remember that it’s not exclusive to cryptocurrencies. In fact, it has several great uses, with some of the most important being cyber security, transparency, and privacy.

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Despite Blockchain Security, Cryptocurrency Has Thieves Too

Cryptocurrencies are still one of the better known uses of blockchain technology, and though their values seem to have leveled off since the explosive growth they experienced a few months ago, that has not stopped people from seeking them out. Of course, where there’s money to be had, you’re sure to find cybercriminals.

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Can You Stay Compliant While Using the Cloud?

One of the inevitabilities of working with the cloud is that you have to face a tough question; what kind of compliance requirements are there for cloud-based data? If you’re storing data for your business in a cloud-based environment, it becomes your responsibility to know where and how this data is stored--particularly if you’re not the one doing the actual cloud hosting. How do you maintain compliance when you seemingly have so little control over how your computing platform is managed and maintained?

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5 Ways to Make IT Security Top of Mind

The most significant resource any business has is their team. Yes, unfortunately, many companies view their staff as disposable cogs, to be worn down and tossed once every ounce of passion for their job has been drained away. Some of these businesses even manage to turn a profit.

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Should You Be Concerned About Cloud Security?

If you think that working with the cloud doesn’t have risks, think again. It’s inevitable that you’ll face security compliance concerns when it comes to your cloud-based data. If your organization has data stored in a cloud-based environment, you’ll want to pay particularly close attention to how compliance laws affect the way that you access and store this information. How can you make sure that your cloud-based data isn’t in violation of some cloud compliance laws?

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Maybe You Can’t Fix Stupid, but You Can Fix Your Security

It’s easy to dismiss network security if you run a small business that seemingly isn’t a target of malicious attacks. Unfortunately, this dismissive attitude can put your organization at risk, as even a simple security issue could be enough to expose your company to dangerous entities. In fact, we would call it foolish not to secure your organization; and one of the most infamous security failings in history stems from this.

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Hackers Prey on Social Media Users

Social media has been an emerging technology in recent years, and has produced many threats. Hackers have learned that they can take advantage of these communication mediums to launch dangerous new attacks on unsuspecting users. With enough ingenuity on a hacker’s part, they can potentially steal the identity of a social media user. Here are some of the best ways that your organization can combat identity theft through social media.

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Sorry Han, When it Comes to Security, You Need to Know the Odds

Star Wars is a cultural phenomenon. For the past 40+ years audiences from all around the world have become enthralled with the characters, the story, and the technology that existed a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. Who knew that it was also a wonderful lesson in modern IT security? For today’s blog, we look at three situations that happened in Star Wars: A New Hope; and, how, if proper IT strategies were put in place, the Empire would have been able to protect its greatest asset.

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Email Security Basics

Email is a modern classic as far as business solutions are concerned, and you’d be hard-pressed to find an office that didn’t use it in some capacity or another. However, because email is so popular, it has become a favorite attack vector of malicious users. Fortunately, there are some basic practices that will help keep your email account secure and your communications private.

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A Ransomware Cyberattack Struck Atlanta, Georgia

Ransomware doesn’t discriminate with its targets, as the city of Atlanta, Georgia now knows so painfully well. The city became the target of a ransomware attack that crippled many of its critical system workflows. The municipal government suffered from one of the most advanced and sustained attacks in recent memory.

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How Your Smartphone Keeps Your Data Safe

Smartphones are the predominant mode of communication, as well as now being the devices most used to access the Internet. With so much depending on the modern smartphone, it has become one of the largest, and most competitive, markets of any consumer item. As a result, manufacturers are building devices with software that is able to encrypt the phone against unauthorized access.

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The Single Greatest Defense Against Ransomware

In 2017, ransomware became a huge threat for businesses, so when discussing how nefarious actors will be leveraging new ransomware streams in 2018, you have to do so with some urgency. Today we will provide some information on ransomware, the current trends, and some trends you have to be very mindful of going forward.

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What the Future Holds for Ransomware

Ransomware is a growing problem for businesses, being one of the most difficult threats to remove from an infrastructure. Not only is it easy to spread, but difficult to avoid as a whole. How can your organization prepare for this threat? It starts by being mindful of how ransomware is spread and how your employees react to it, both now and in the future.

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Security Questions about the Internet of Things

We often talk about how the Internet of Things can create security issues in businesses if not properly handled. While there are some very real threats that can be posed by the IoT in the workplace, there is no denying that it can also serve some very real utility there as well.

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A QR Code Could Be your New Wi-Fi Password

There is no understating the importance of strong, reliable passwords to your organization’s network security, especially to protect its wireless connection. However, this can create some friction with your staff when they try to connect to Wi-Fi using their mobile device. To make accessing the Internet easier, scannable QR codes can be used to connect to the Internet.

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FREE Printout: IT Security End-User Checklist

This guide was created so that business owners, office managers, and IT departments can provide it as an educational resource to showcase some of the most basic IT security practices that can be implemented in your workplace. We recommend printing this out and handing it out to your staff for maximum results.

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The Value Managed IT Services Gives Your Business

Whether you’re just a small business looking to get operations moving in your chosen location, or you’re an enterprise with multiple offices across the country, one thing is universally the same: you need IT support in some capacity. As more technology is added to networks of all sizes and complexities, the need to manage this technology improves. Thankfully, you don’t necessarily have to go at it alone--you have third-party outsourcing at your disposal, which can save you both time and money in the long run.

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FREE Printout: Dos and Don’ts of IT Security

The following guide is designed to be used by business owners and office managers as an educational resource to establish some basic IT security best practices in the workplace. Feel free to print it out and hand it out or post it in common areas.

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Can You Spot the Signs of a Malicious Link?

The Internet is notorious for being a minefield of threats, many of which lurk hidden behind innocent-looking links. In order to go about business safely, you need to be able to identify which links you can click; and, which should be skipped.

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BYOD is Only Helpful If the Devices Are Secure

Mobile devices are so common nowadays that you’ll likely encounter your employees bringing multiple devices to the office on a regular basis. Little do they know that everything they bring with them, from their Fitbit to their laptop, poses a security threat. Of course, the threat level from each individual device will depend on what it is exactly, but the point stands that the less you do about mobile device security now, the more danger your organization will be in down the road.

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How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Public Wi-Fi

Someday, you’re going to encounter a situation where you absolutely need Wi-Fi and the only option will be a public connection. This becomes rather problematic, as a public Wi-Fi connection is far from secure for business purposes. A method to maximize productivity without compromising security is needed for every business that has employees working out of the office, but what’s the best way to do it?

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Do You Know What to Do When Involved in Identity Theft?

The unfortunate truth of increased technology use in the workplace is that there is a corresponding increase in the potential for cybercrime, more specifically identity theft, to strike the workplace. The question is, what can you do to help prevent it, and how should you react to it should it strike?

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The Cisco Vulnerability Requires Multiple Patches

Virtual private networks are vulnerable to an exploit that was recently brought to light. Cisco has announced that this exploit undermines its ASA, or Adaptive Security Appliance tool. If this issue isn’t patched immediately, you could find your organization vulnerable through remote code exploitation.

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Tip of the Week: Which Browser Provides the Best Security?

For most users the Internet browser is one of the most utilized applications on their computer or mobile device. With the influx of aggressive problems, it is mighty useful to know which Internet browser is the best for keeping your data, identity, and network secure. Today, we will take a look at the five most popular Internet browsers found on desktop and laptop computers and decipher which are the most reliable.

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Is Your Password Security Up to Par?

Passwords are all over the place these days, whether they’re required to access an online account, or access the devices used to open these accounts. While both types of passwords can make for ideal security conditions, this is only the case if the passwords are strong. If your passwords can be guessed by just about anyone, can you really call it a security measure? New insights from SplashData show that passwords aren’t being considered as much as they need to be.

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4 Uses for Blockchain that Don’t Involve Cryptocurrency

With the meteoric rise of Bitcoin’s value, and just as sudden decline to less than half of its highest value, cryptocurrency has been pulled into the public eye. However, cryptocurrency is only one use of blockchain technology. We’ll examine a few of its other potential applications.

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Tip of the Week: Awareness Is Important When Surfing the Web

We all love the Internet. We all use it almost every day. For this week’s tip, we’ll review a few ways to help keep yourself from getting in trouble while browsing.

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Tip of the Week: How to Protect Yourself from Invoice Impersonation

As cybercriminals become increasingly sophisticated in their methods of attack, it is important that your staff--the ones on the front lines--are educated to spot these attempts and know what to do if one is encountered. In order to spot these attacks, it is important to know what to look for.

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Targeted Ransomware Checks for Particular Attributes

Put yourself in the shoes of a cybercriminal. If you were to launch a ransomware attack, who would be your target? Would you launch an indiscriminate attack to try to snare as many as you could, or would you narrow your focus to be more selective? As it happens, real-life cybercriminals have largely made the shift to targeted, relatively tiny, ransomware attacks.

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At What Point Does a Service Become Spyware?

Spyware, like other malware, is a problem for any organization. Since your business generates, collects, and uses considerable amounts of data, there are plenty of organizations that want to get their hands on it. You spend so much time and money protecting your data against threats on the Internet, but what if the spyware were to just come standard on the computer you just bought?

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People May Not Trust the IoT, But They Still Use It

Connectivity is one of the major benefits of mobile technology, but some developments have taken this aspect to crazy (and borderline ridiculous) heights. The Internet of Things is forcing businesses to rethink the conventions of connectivity in ways which previously weren’t particularly necessary. Unsurprisingly, the Internet of Things is forcing business owners and normal users alike to remain skeptical of connected technology to a certain degree, and a survey from Cisco showcases this trend perfectly.

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According to Study, Only 28% Utilize Two-Factor Authentication

2FA, or two-factor authentication, is a simple and effective means of boosting your cybersecurity. Despite this, a study performed by Duo Labs suggests that 2FA has not been adopted as much as one might expect, or as much as it should be.

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Secure Your Android During the Holiday Season

Android is a very common operating system on mobile devices around the world, and because of this, you won’t be surprised to hear that hackers are always trying to one-up security developers. If your business takes advantage of Android devices like smartphones or tablets, you’ll want to consider these 11 security tips that will help keep your organization safe.

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Are You Accidentally Gifting a Security Breach?

The holidays are a time filled with good food, visits from dear friends and family, and exchanging gifts with those you care about. However, to keep the season bright and merry, you need to be a little cautious during your next gift exchange, as many gifts can present some unexpected risks to your recipient’s security. Be mindful if you see the following items on someone’s wish list.

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Keep Your End Users From Contributing to Security Issues

Insider threats contribute to a significant number of data breaches. These cases of data exposure are enabled by a member of your staff, whether they intended to harm your business or simply made an honest mistake. With so much focus directed toward the threats out in the world, sometimes we forget that the biggest dangers can be among our ranks. To make up for this, we’ll discuss a few ways to keep insider threats from doing your business too much harm.

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Tip of the week: Here Are Four Tools to Secure Your Business

Business security is a common issue for many small organizations with limited budgets, but it doesn’t have to be an issue. We’re here to help you master the seemingly endless threats and security problems that major vulnerabilities present to the small business environment, and it all starts out by understanding how even basic security solutions protect your organization.

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Google Is Becoming More Secure for Certain Users

Google is taking steps to protect the data of a small group of its users who run the highest risk of experiencing a data breach or hack. This new service, the Advance Protection Program, shows promise in protecting the information that these select few can access.

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The Voting Machine You Use May Have Serious Security Issues

The ability to vote is considered one of the great rights in the world, putting one’s voice and opinion into action to shape history. However, it has been demonstrated that the electronic voting machines that some states in the U.S. use simply aren’t secure enough to ensure that the democratic process is preserved.

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Hackers May Meet Their Match With AI

There are many organizations in the world that simply can’t have cybercriminals and hackers interfering with their data. One of these organizations, CERN (whose acronym translates to the European Laboratory for Particle Physics) has far too powerful of a computer grid to allow hackers to access it. To keep it safe, CERN has deployed what may be the future of cybersecurity: artificial intelligence.

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Two Steps Are Better Than One, Where Security Is Concerned

You’re lucky to go a month without seeing news of some devastating data breach. With more businesses gearing up for the worst, what are you doing to protect your organization’s intellectual property and sensitive data? You can start by implementing a new type of authentication system that’s much more secure than your current security strategy--two-factor authentication.

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Security Comes In Two Parts--Don’t Neglect The Physical Half

Physical security is more or less what it sounds like: security intended to protect the physical infrastructure that houses your business and your critical data. Many of the pieces of physical security will seem very familiar, even if you didn’t know the right terms for them.

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Scammers and Skimmers Are a Bad Combination

Considering how often hackers target financial credentials like credit card numbers and expiration dates, it’s not surprising that ATMs can provide a wealth of information to them. Hackers are willing to go exceedingly far just to get their hands on these credentials--including physically altering the devices themselves to install skimmers and other technology on them. Unless you know what to look for, it can be difficult to tell if a machine has been tampered with.

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One Of Your Biggest Security Risks: Your Employees

You might be surprised by how many of your organization’s security issues originate from within. A major contributor is user error, which can lead to some pretty severe problems reaching from your data security, to your workflow, all the way to the continuation of your business itself.

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30 Schools Shut Down In Montana After Cyber Attack

Students generally love it when classes are cancelled for whatever reason, but thanks to a cybercriminal group called TheDarkOverlord Solutions, a school in Flathead Valley, Montana was disrupted for an extended period of time. This downtime resulted in a disruption of operations for over 30 schools, as well as the threat to the personal information of countless teachers, students, and administrators due to a ransomware attack.

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Protect Yourself in the Future By Learning from These Past Phishing Scams

Would you be surprised if we told you that cybercrime is one of the biggest threats to the success of your organization? Unfortunately, there’s no escaping the fact that your business will be under fire from all sides by security threats. One of the most notorious methods includes phishing--email scams that are designed to harvest credentials and other information from unsuspecting users.

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Data Security Has to Be A Priority For Your Organization

Considering that since January 1st of this year, there has been upwards of 10 million personal information records lost or stolen each day, odds are that you, or someone you know, has had their records compromised by a data breach. With such a high incident rate, individuals and businesses that have never received any kind of notification that their records were included in a breach, generally consider themselves lucky and assume that they are not at risk of identity theft or unauthorized account usage. Unfortunately for them, that is not always the case.

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Your Employees Can Be One Of Your Biggest Security Risks

A surprising number of security issues come from inside your organization. User error on the part of the employee can present major problems for your workflow, data security, and the integrity of your business. User error could be something as simple as an employee clicking on the wrong links when they receive a suspicious email in their inbox, or if they are accessing data that they simply have no business accessing in the first place. Sometimes businesses will even completely forget to remove employee credentials when they leave a project or the company creating a breachable hole in your network. Regardless of the reason, user error can be a detrimental occurrence, and one which must be prepared for.

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Don’t Be Like These 14 Million US Businesses and Ignore Data Security

If you run a small business, you might consider yourself a small target of hacking attacks. It might make sense to think of it in this way, but this actually is not advisable to think of it in this way. According to a recent survey by CNBC and SurveyMonkey, only two percent of small businesses see cyber attacks as anything worth worrying about. This leads us to the next question… are you one of them?

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Why You Should Pay Attention to Data Security Notifications

If you’ve watched the news lately, chances are you’ve seen the Equifax breach and the ridiculous fallout it has caused. Over 133 million personal records have been stolen. While it’s difficult not to feel individually victimized by such a breach, it’s important to remember that it’s often not your specific credentials targeted by hackers. Since businesses often hold onto valuable information, they have big crosshairs painted onto them. It doesn’t even stop there--any vendors or partners you deal with are also in danger of hacking attacks.

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3 Ways To Improve Your Business’ Data Security

Data security, always an important topic, has been made even more urgent by the Equifax data breach and the fact that 143 million users had their personal information stolen after entrusting it (or not) to Equifax. You need to consider what would happen if your business were on the receiving end of a data breach, and prepare to handle this truly unpleasant circumstance.

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Virginia To Upgrade Voting Machines. Hopefully Other States Follow Suit

The 2016 United States presidential election was an ugly one for multiple reasons--chief among them the accusation that hacked voting machines could have altered the outcome of the election significantly. Thankfully, there are steps being taken to alleviate the worries that third parties might alter the outcome of such important events.

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Charity Scams Are Very Real. Here’s How To Dodge Them

Dealing with disasters are a part of doing business. You know how difficult it is to recover from a devastating flood or storm. While businesses tend to suffer from these situations, countless individuals suffer every time a natural disaster hits. Just take a look at the United States in recent weeks. Even though you may want to donate to people suffering from hurricanes, there are illegitimate charities out there that want to make a quick buck off of your generosity.

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Your State Dictates Data Security Notifications… Will You Be Notified?

In the last few months, there have been several high-profile data security breaches that resulted in the theft of millions upon millions of non-public information records. Though much of the focus in the aftermath of the breaches was on personal identity theft and prevention, it’s important to keep in mind that not all the stolen data records target individuals. Business entities are also at risk. Vendors and partners that you do business with regularly will probably have record of your company’s non-public information, payment information, or tax ID number.

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Adware Lawsuit Between Lenovo And FTC Settled

About two and a half years ago, Lenovo was brought under fire for manufacturing products that had adware preinstalled on them. This malware, a variant called Superfish, was installed on up to 750,000 Lenovo devices, and the company--eager to put this incident behind them--still refuses to admit fault, despite paying reparations and other fees as a result. Superfish allowed access to sensitive information and a root certificate, which could be used to access encrypted data on the same network. All in all, it was a rather embarrassing and dangerous scenario for Lenovo, and it comes with its fair share of consequences.

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Tip of the Week: Ransomware Is Exploding… Is Your Business Ready For The Blast?

When it comes to Internet threats, ransomware is the one that causes the most fear, especially for small and medium-sized businesses, as it should. According to the Cisco 2017 Annual Cybersecurity Report, ransomware is growing at a yearly rate of 350%. It’s time to make sure that you’re doing what you can to stop your business from becoming another ransomware statistic. Here’s five very good tips that will help you avoid becoming a victim of the next big ransomware attack!

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Your Business Needs To Manage Mobile Devices For The Sake Of Its Security

Businesses can benefit from the use of personal mobile devices in the workplace, yet there are also potential dangers in allowing mobile and Internet of Things devices to access your network. In order to reduce these dangers, you need to put some limits and guidelines on the use of such devices in the workplace.

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Who Needs To Be Involved In Network Security? Simple: Everyone

Network security is an important part of keeping both your business and your staff away from online threats, but it’s not enough to implement the best, most comprehensive solutions on the market. There are a surprising number of facets to network security, and in order to optimize protection against online threats, you’ll need to know all of them. Thankfully, you don’t have to do this alone.

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What Hackers Are Looking For On Your Network

When a hacker tries to infiltrate your network, they are doing so with a purpose in mind. Usually they are looking for specific information, like account credentials, personal information, or files that can be used to blackmail victims. Regardless, we’ll go over what a hacker can do with the information that they collect from you, and how you can best protect it from them.

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3 Trends That Are Changing the Role IT Plays for Your Business

Your IT is a central part of your organization’s operations, but its role has changed significantly as business processes have grown more streamlined. There are always shifts and changes in the way that businesses function which must be accounted for, especially in the modern office environment. How have these shifts affected your business’s IT management?

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Tip of the Week: Lock Your Computer By Simply Walking Away With Dynamic Lock

Security best practices demand that a workstation should never be left unlocked. However, it can be really tempting to leave it unlocked if you only plan on stepping away for a moment--but unfortunately, that moment can easily turn into many if you are distracted from your task. Fortunately, there is now a fix that relies on the one device most of us are never without: our phones.

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Is It A Good Idea To Bait A Phishing Scam?

Phishing scams have had a supporting role in many of the latest cyber threats, often as the means the attacker has used to start off their attack. This attack vector is relatively easy to avoid in most cases, but requires education for the end user.

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If Your Business Could Talk, It’d Complain About Spam

Chances are, you’ve heard of spam, but many don’t know how to identify it in the first place, let alone work around it. Frankly, spam can cause some serious damage to your business if not properly dealt with. In today’s blog, you’ll learn what makes spam, “spam,” and how you can keep it from infecting your inbox.

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Tip of the Week: Using These Websites Can Help Preserve Your Privacy

Everyone has a right to privacy. However, with the popularity of social networks, the Internet is a very hard place to remain a private individual. Digital communication is everywhere. Cybercrime has become a fairly regular event. This week’s tip of the week takes a glance at three websites that you can use to help enforce your right to privacy.

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You Need To Be Familiar With Patching Terminology

Over the past several months, while watching the news or reading about business and technology, you’ve probably encountered a few words, such as ‘ransomware’ ‘exploit weakness’, and ‘security patch’. These terms are used often, and you may be confused as to what they really mean, and how they relate to you and the security of your business’ data.

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Are Shortcuts Sabotaging Your Progress?

When your organization is implementing a new project, there are a lot of expectations and deadlines that are watched with a close eye. While it might be ideal to get the project finished as quickly as possible, doing so can put a lot of pressure and stress on it that can ultimately be its downfall. For example, if you don’t think out the planning phase carefully, the entire implementation process can suffer--particularly when working on new IT initiatives.

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Are You Prepared For Incoming Threats To Your Systems?

It doesn’t matter if you’re a small business, a large enterprise, or if you're in a rural town, or a larger city. You still have to worry about the security of your data and the integrity of your infrastructure. Thankfully, there are services out there that allow even small businesses to leverage powerful, enterprise-level tools for maximum network security. The most valuable of all is perhaps the Unified Threat Management (UTM) tool.

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On A Scale of "Um...?" To "Safe," How Well Managed Is Your Data?

Putting together your workforce is something that requires painstaking attention to detail. You found workers who are willing to work as hard as possible to further your organization’s goals. Yet, you have to remember that even the most perfect employees are still human, and that they can make mistakes and can put the organization’s data at risk. User error is a common problem, and it is one of the most important things to keep in mind while you set up your information systems.

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While Dragons Might Not Stand Guard, HBO Is Serious About Data Security

With the mountainous success of Game of Thrones, the BBC-produced show has always been understandably concerned with their security. However, with the show officially overtaking the original source material, A Song of Ice and Fire, there is an increased presence of curious fans and members of the press with an eye out for a sneak peek at the action. This has led to more; somewhat more modern measures being adopted to keep the production’s secrets safe.

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Protect Your Business with Strong Network Security Practices

With the surge in the number of small and medium businesses that have fallen prey to malware and cyber criminals, there is a lot of focus of what an organization can do to prevent being a victim and how the company should handle themselves after an attack. There is another key factor to preventing cyber criminals from penetrating into your network: your employees.

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Tip of the Week: How to Foil A Phishing Attack By ID’ing a Bad URL

Phishing attacks have been around for decades, first being recorded in 1995 where scammers would pose as AOL employees and request a user’s billing information through instant messages. Nowadays, email phishing attempts have tricked users into handing over personal information of all kinds. There are many methods of identifying a phishing attempt, but today we’ll focus on one.

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective PC Users

Security is one of the most crucial pain points of all businesses, but sometimes it can be tricky to implement solutions if you’re not sure what you specifically need. Network security isn’t easy, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be hard. If you have difficulty reinforcing a security state of mind in your office, we have good news for you; by keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to keep your business more secure than it would be otherwise.

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Latest Ransomware Attack is Brutal Reminder of Cyber Security Importance

A new malware swept across the globe Tuesday, incorporating facets of many ransomwares that have made headlines recently. While it originally appeared to be a variant of the Petya ransomware, it has been determined that it shares more in common with WannaCry. However, “NotPetya,” as it has been named, has a few additional features that experts say make it worse than either of its predecessors.

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Tip of the Week: How to Encrypt Windows Files

Looking for a way to protect sensitive files on your PC? For Windows users, one easy safeguard you can take is to encrypt the files and file folders containing your sensitive information.

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Study Finds an Organization’s Greatest Security Risk isn’t Who You’d Expect

The more users on your network, the more risk that user error could create a costly mistake for your infrastructure. While untrained employees could certainly ignore security policies, the greatest risk to your organization is an unexpected one. Research has proven that your company’s CEO, as well as other C-suite employees, hold one of the greatest risks for your business’ security.

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