Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Cyber security expert and Presidential candidate, John Mcafee offers to decrypt iPhone

Published by denton on February 19th, 2016

MIAMI BEACH, FL - DECEMBER 13: John McAfee is sighted in South Beach on December 13, 2012 in Miami Beach, Florida. (Photo by Larry Marano/WireImage)

 

The biggest news this week isn’t about some new device hitting the market, or a major technological breakthrough. Instead, it’s about one older iPhone. While no one might think twice about an iPhone 5c, this phone could radically change the state of cybersecurity in our country, and even the world. This phone was once owned by the San Bernardino shooter, and at the moment, no one can unlock it.

So how can one little outdated iPhone change the state of cybersecurity? Well, the issue is that the FBI wants to have a way to access any phone, so that they can go through the information contained within. Unfortunately for them, due to the way Apple encrypts their phones, they cannot simply provide the FBI with some manner of unlocking the phone. In another place and time, that might have been the end of the story. And honestly, that’s where it should have ended. John Mcafee has offered to decrypt the phone in 3 weeks and he will “eat his shoe” if he does not succeed. Read more about his announcement here.


‘Locky’ ransomware poses threat to the unlucky

Published by denton on February 17th, 2016

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“Locky” feels like quite a cheery-sounding name.

But it’s also the nickname of a new strain of ransomware, so-called because it renames all your important files so that they have the extension .locky.

Of course, it doesn’t just rename your files, it scrambles them first, and – as you probably know about ransomware – only the crooks have the decryption key.

You can buy the decryption key from the crooks via the so-called dark web.

The prices we’ve seen vary from BTC 0.5 to BTC 1.00 (BTC is short for “bitcoin,” where one bitcoin is currently worth about $400/£280).

 

Read more here.


Uninstalling Facebook app saves up to 20% of Android battery life

Published by denton on February 11th, 2016

Facebook’s Android app negatively impacts performance and battery life, even when it’s only running in the background.

Facebook does not have the greatest track record with its Android app. Users have long complained about performance issues and it sucking up battery and last year Facebook’s chief product officer, Chris Cox, took the unusual step of making his staff ditch their iPhones and move to Android until they sorted out the issues.

But the problems have remained, and recently they led the Android blogger Russell Holly to dump the app, starting a chain reaction which revealed something rather interesting about the app’s performance. Read More here

Mark Zuckerberg , Facebook...**FILE**    Facebook.com's mastermind, Mark Zuckerberg smiles at his office in Palo Alto, Calif., in this Monday, Feb. 5, 2007 file photo. The owners of a rival social networking Web site are trying to shut down Facebook.com, charging in a federal lawsuit that Facebook's founder stole their ideas while they were students at Harvard. The three founders of ConnectU say Zuckerberg agreed to finish computer code for their site, but repeatedly stalled and eventually created Facebook using their ideas.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, FILE)


Google has started blocking malicious button links!

Published by denton on February 5th, 2016

imageGoogle has now started blocking websites that use deceptive content or ads to make you do things that you wouldn’t normally do, such as fake download buttons that appear right next to the real (more…)


3 reasons using Revenue IT can optimize your business.

Published by denton on February 3rd, 2016

1. Reduced hardware costs

In this fast-paced world of technological development, it can be hard for companies to stay current with their hardware. Constantly keeping up with the latest and greatest technology simply is not an option for a lot of businesses, and as such many IT departments fall behind in terms of modern equipment.

In fact, Spiceworks’ “2016 State of IT” report found that 67 percent of IT professionals are prompted to buy new hardware only after the old equipment dies.

This is one of many areas where an MSP’s infrastructure can benefit your IT workforce. MSPs are known for keeping up with technological trends, as staying current with their hardware choices is simply part of the business model. Opting for managed services, whether they be a managed hosting service or even just outsourcing certain daily operations, can result in having the best technology has to offer without overburdening your budget.

2. Predictability

The person who said “variety is the spice of life” never had to create an IT budget. When it comes to how much your company is spending on IT operations, variation is quite literally the last thing you need. Predictability in a budget allows you to plan better for the future, resulting in more goals achieved for your company.

MSPs are great at making sure you and your company are never surprised by unforeseen budgetary expenditures for IT services. Most MSPs base payment off of a fixed monthly plan, which means you’ll know exactly how much money you’ll be spending on outsourced services at all times.

3. Allows your IT workforce to be more goal-oriented

The greatest characteristic any company can embody is having a specific, goal-oriented mindset. The entirety of your team should consistently be working towards the goals set by your business, with as little deviation from these goals as possible.

And while companies would love for their employees to be working toward progressing the future of the business, sadly, things come up that divert their attention. This is nowhere more true than in your IT department. The level of technology needed to keep a business up and running these days is extremely high. If you are doing all of your IT work in-house you may be opening yourself up to massive sidetracking away from company goals, especially long-term ones.

Although your employees want to be constantly improving the company, your IT department is most likely spending a lot of its time putting out fires that are hindering daily operations. Allowing an MSP to come in and take over some of these lower-level jobs will free up your employees to work on the projects that advance your business’s overall goals.

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Windows wants you to upgrade to Windows 10

Published by denton on February 2nd, 2016

Microsoft said it would push Windows 10 upgrades onto people’s PCs much harder this year – and Redmond has been true to its word.

From Monday, Windows Update will start making the upgrade to version 10 of the operating system a recommended update, rather than an optional one, a spokesperson for the software giant confirmed. So if you’ve got automatic updates set up on your computer, expect to download and install a few gigabytes of code for the move to Windows 10.

Also be aware that if you have switched to manual updates you still may end up downloading the new OS anyway. Windows Update is automatically preselecting the optional download as desired, so there’s no need to click on the box to get it. Read More

 

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Infamous “Cryptolocker” Virus Returns with a Vengeance as “Cryptowall”

Published by admin on February 1st, 2016

Cryptolocker cost thousands of people millions of dollars before antivirus software finally began to eliminate the number of attacks. Weeks after Cryptolocker began to lose a grip on the digital threat world, Cryptowall hit the streets.

If you didn’t get to meet Cryptolocker proper, consider yourself lucky; the only thing you could do was completely delete the encrypted files on your computer or pay an outlandish fee of $300 to have the host hackers unlock them for you. Cryptolocker took no hostages; even backup files and partitions did not stop the virus from encrypting your files, business and personal ones alike. Read Moreimages


Camping Anyone?

Published by admin on October 7th, 2015

Over the weekend the family and i decided to go camping. Now to begin this story you need to know that i grew up in Wasilla, Alaska ( and yes i went to school with Sara). So camping means something completely different to me. As many of you remember Camping use to be a long trip to the woods with at best a sleeping bag and some minimal rations (and if you were very lucky you had a tent). Long were days where you slept with a bolder or stick poking you in the back! You awoke to a growling belly or at least you hope that was the thing growling. You promptly proceeded to (quickly to avoid shaking in your PJ’s) start a fire and cook your breakfast with the most important being some resemblance of coffee…. camping

so back to the present. After purchasing all the needed luxuries of modern camping (long gone was the tattered sleeping bag, mre’s, and coffee kettle). Now the trunk was full of sleeping bags, tents, coolers, battery operated lanterns, flashlights, charcoal, lighter fluid, lighters and last but not least computers (ill come back to the computer). We Arrived at the state operated campsite with all the luxuries including electric and water right to the campsite….. I soon found myself wrestling with the two three man tents (note only 3 people in the vehicle). After only a mere 2 hours my fiances son and i managed to erect some semblance of a tent. I dont remember camping being so much work. Anyways back to the adventure. We spent the rest of the day starting fires, setting up bedding and cooking dinner (which consisted of opening cans, and grilling store bought hamburgers and hot dogs). Oh i almost forgot we did the try to roast marshmallows which prompting escalated in to a marshmallow throwing war.

After the dust settled (at only 7:00 pm) boredom set in my fellow tent wrestler decided to play on his laptop. I watched with a grin on my face as he proudly pulled his laptop out and chuckled (inside) as the words “hey Jim there is no wireless out here” were spoken.

I guess maybe times have changed or maybe I’m just getting older but camping sure has changed. Because by 10:00 pm we were packing everything back into the car for the hour and a half trip home.


10 Cyber Security Tips for Small Business

Published by admin on October 6th, 2015

  

Broadband and information technology are powerful factors in small businesses reaching new markets and increasing productivity and efficiency. However, businesses need a cybersecurity strategy to protect their own business, their customers, and their data from growing cybersecurity threats.
1. Train employees in security principles

Establish basic security practices and policies for employees, such as requiring strong passwords, and establish appropriate Internet use guidelines that detail penalties for violating company cybersecurity policies. Establish rules of behavior describing how to handle and protect customer information and other vital data.
2. Protect information, computers and networks from cyber attacks

Keep clean machines: having the latest security software, web browser, and operating system are the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats. Set antivirus software to run a scan after each update. Install other key software updates as soon as they are available.
3. Provide firewall security for your Internet connection

A firewall is a set of related programs that prevent outsiders from accessing data on a private network. Make sure the operating system’s firewall is enabled or install free firewall software available online. If employees work from home, ensure that their home system(s) are protected by a firewall.
4. Create a mobile device action plan

Mobile devices can create significant security and management challenges, especially if they hold confidential information or can access the corporate network. Require users to password protect their devices, encrypt their data, and install security apps to prevent criminals from stealing information while the phone is on public networks. Be sure to set reporting procedures for lost or stolen equipment.
5. Make backup copies of important business data and information

Regularly backup the data on all computers. Critical data includes word processing documents, electronic spreadsheets, databases, financial files, human resources files, and accounts receivable/payable files. Backup data automatically if possible, or at least weekly and store the copies either offsite or in the cloud.
6. Control physical access to your computers and create user accounts for each employee

Prevent access or use of business computers by unauthorized individuals. Laptops can be particularly easy targets for theft or can be lost, so lock them up when unattended. Make sure a separate user account is created for each employee and require strong passwords. Administrative privileges should only be given to trusted IT staff and key personnel.
7. Secure your Wi-Fi networks

If you have a Wi-Fi network for your workplace, make sure it is secure, encrypted, and hidden. To hide your Wi-Fi network, set up your wireless access point or router so it does not broadcast the network name, known as the Service Set Identifier (SSID). Password protect access to the router.
8. Employ best practices on payment cards

Work with banks or processors to ensure the most trusted and validated tools and anti-fraud services are being used. You may also have additional security obligations pursuant to agreements with your bank or processor. Isolate payment systems from other, less secure programs and don’t use the same computer to process payments and surf the Internet.
9. Limit employee access to data and information, limit authority to install software

Do not provide any one employee with access to all data systems. Employees should only be given access to the specific data systems that they need for their jobs, and should not be able to install any software without permission.
10. Passwords and authentication

Require employees to use unique passwords and change passwords every three months. Consider implementing multi-factor authentication that requires additional information beyond a password to gain entry. Check with your vendors that handle sensitive data, especially financial institutions, to see if they offer multi-factor authentication for your account.


Break-fix Vs. Preventative Maintenance IT

Published by admin on October 5th, 2015

Break-fix Vs. Preventative Maintenance IT

Many years ago when i first started in the IT field I noticed that spent 90% of my time chasing problems. Seems that when people start out in this field they always try to keep ahead of the problems, But sadly more often then not its day in and day out of putting out fires.  I think for most, including myself back then, we create the perfect problem by having to many customers. who suffers? (besides your IT guy staying up all night either working or sweating when the next disaster will happen)  well the customer does. computer on fire

Here are a few recommendations as that former IT guy i would recommend to any computer user and/or business owner to always have in place.

  • antivirus with updates …avast, trend micro, avg and even microsoft security essentials are all good choices (no brainer)
  • A solid backup program both local and remote (i always recommend Enveloc)
  • spyware/maleware cleaner (spybot, malewarebytes)
  • never use POP email try to set as IMAP.  POP email is not recoverable unless backed up.