Industry News

The End is Nigh: You have Until January To Upgrade Windows 7

February 28th, 2019 by Julie Lough
Windows 7 end of life

May 2017. Over 200,000 Windows XP worldwide users fall victim to one of the most notorious widespread ransomware attacks: WannaCry. The users were an easy target because three years prior, Microsoft ended support for Windows XP, meaning that it no longer received maintenance and security patching. While WannaCry wasn’t the only exploit that targeted the now-exposed Windows XP vulnerabilities, it was certainly the most widespread and devastating.

Fast-forward to today. Microsoft Windows 7 is rapidly approaching its end of support on Jan. 14, 2020. In 2016, Microsoft Chief Marketing Officer Chris Capossela warned about the risks of using Windows 7 due to the software’s age and increasing compatibility concerns with everything from printers to line-of-business applications. In 2017, Microsoft issued warnings that Windows 7 is dangerously insecure.

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Why Wishing Your Technology Into Progress Won’t Achieve Your Goals

January 30th, 2019 by Julie Lough

align the right technologyIt’s month two of 2019 and no surprise, we’ve been inundated with information about the importance of goal-setting and strategic planning. Depending on how the previous year went, the new year can leave us excited or, in many cases, overwhelmed.

We’ve all heard the quote, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” When it comes to planning change initiatives for your business, whether it’s a big move, creating a new role, or implementing new software, it’s important to sit down and plan out the details, creating a goal rather than just a wish. However, while the thoughtful preparation seems detailed and inclusive, we often see one major missing puzzle piece in many business’ strategic goal setting.

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Beyond Beige: Bringing Your Technology into the 21st Century

January 22nd, 2019 by Julie Lough

Upgrade TechnologyIt’s Friday night. Your spouse is at Blockbuster picking out the newest VHS release. Your kids are at home alone dancing on the couch to MC Hammer. You’re stuck at the office behind your beige computer trying to finish the week’s work so you can start enjoying your weekend.

Does any of this sound familiar? Like, last-week familiar? No, you’re not back in 1992, and you probably aren’t watching VHS tapes or listening to “Too Legit to Quit” anymore. But if your PC is still beige or nearly old enough to drink, it’s definitely time to bring your technology into the 21st century.

Most business owners consider technology upgrades to be too disruptive of business operations and too costly and, thus, they ignore or put them off. They’re further afraid that any new upgrades will hurt employee productivity while they learn new software and hardware solutions.

Nothing could be further from the truth than those worries. Upgrades can be costly, disruptive and cause inefficiencies. However, with the right IT partner, they don’t have to be.

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Overcoming Your Hesitation to Moving to the Cloud

November 18th, 2018 by Julie Lough

If you haven’t moved your business to the cloud – partly or completely – you aren’t alone. Business owners in many industries have been reluctant to make the move. But that’s starting to change. Rapidly.

More and more, business owners are realizing the productivity and security improvements they can achieve using cloud and hybrid cloud solutions over relying on their solely on-premises technology infrastructure.

What is “Moving to the Cloud?”

We hear and read the phrase “moving to the cloud,” but what does it actually mean?

Some people seem to believe it’s when you store your data in the cloud – that is, taking advantage of the scalable, predictable expense of having their data redundantly stored in geographically dispersed data centers protecting it from natural or manmade disasters. Indeed, that is one way of “moving to the cloud.” But that’s not all.

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Claim Your Victory: 5 Defensive Strategies to Prevent Cyberattacks

October 3rd, 2018 by Julie Lough

Prevent Cyberattacks

Listen here for a radio interview about this article on WGVU public media.

Is it defense or offense that wins the game? While debate continues around whether defense or offense is key to victory, there is certainly no doubt about the importance of a solid defensive strategy. Similar to a game of football, creating a defensive strategy for your team is crucial to winning against the opponent, a.k.a. the data hackers.

Experienced hackers and sophisticated phishing schemes have affected all organizations, regardless of size. Consider this alarming statistic – 64% of companies have experienced web-based attacks and 43% of cyberattacks target small businesses. Small businesses are easy targets due to their minimal security and moderate amount of data, and because the chances of attack are high, setting up a strong defense is critical to avoiding big issues in the future.

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Need to Declutter? Recycle Old Tech

September 6th, 2018 by Jennifer Lough

Let us suppose, just for a moment, that you’ve just treated yourself to a haul of new gadgets. You probably have a stack of old ones to dispose of. What to do?

 

 

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Going Smishing

August 26th, 2018 by Jennifer Lough

Fun, but very important, fact: your smartphone is not immune to the various hazards that attack computers. You’ve heard of phishing, which typically works through email. Smishing  is similar, but it relies on text messages to reel in victims. Like phishing, a smishing message looks like it comes from someone you trust, like a bank, or a family member. The goal is to get personal information from you, such as your social security number, passwords, and other things the attackers can use. Often, they will then try to steal your identity or your money, but sometimes there will also be malware in the message that gives them access to your phone.

There are a few reasons smishing can be more dangerous to you than phishing. Read the rest of this entry »


Examples of Phishing Emails and How Not to Get Infected

August 9th, 2018 by Julie Lough

Wombat Security Technologies recently released their “State of the Phish 2018” report. This report found that 76% of companies surveyed experienced phishing attacks in 2017.

What is a phishing attack?

Phishing is an attempt to gather sensitive information, such as username and password, credit card information, social security numbers, etc., and use it for malicious purposes. These are often done via email, over the phone, through messenger applications or on social media.

The term “phishing” came about to describe the “bait and switch” style that phishing attacks emulate. They bait you with something that looks legitimate, an email from a friend, an alert from a trusted organization, etc., and then switch out the link with a malicious one, funneling you into phisher’s “net.”

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Click Fraud: When Clicks on your Advertisements are Bad Things

April 18th, 2018 by Jennifer Lough

If you’re running a small business, you’re probably interested in the revenue that comes from successful advertising. Unfortunately, there’s this pesky thing called click fraud, which causes you to overpay for advertising. So how does this work, and how do you avoid it? Read the rest of this entry »


Types of Malware and How to Beat Them: Part 2

March 12th, 2018 by Jennifer Lough

This is the second part of a multipart series on common types of malware and other computer hazards. For those who have managed services with Micro Visions, we’re keeping an eye on threats for you. However, there are always small things you can do to further protect yourself.

Part 2: Spyware Read the rest of this entry »