By -- 2017-05-23 in Blog

 

Even a company as large as Disney has fallen victim to hackers, having had files of their recent movie stolen and threatened to be released online if ransoms were not paid.  They refused, and clips have since surfaced.  Its great news that they refused to pay and instead worked with authorities to try and bring the scammers to justice.

This goes to show that every company, large and small, must do more to protect themselves including security awareness training with employees.  Optfinity, through Knowbe4, offers this type of security awareness training to all our clients.  Not only does this entail online tutorials and test emails which assess which employees are vulnerable and likely to click on phishing scams, but also reports back to the client to see where their company’s weaknesses lie.

Don’t wait till a naïve employee innocently clicks on a wayward word document emailed to them by a hacker, thus giving them access to every bit of data on your servers.  Contact Optfinity today for a free assessment.

By -- 2017-05-17 in Blog

 

Previously, we have shown you how to delete and clear these pesky, residual elements in Internet Explorer that stick around on your computer after you’re finished searching the web.  This time, we will be showing you how to do it for Microsoft Edge, their newest web browser.  You’ll find updating to this browser comes with many benefits, it’s much faster than IE, and most elements are more user friendly, including spring cleaning of your data.

There are now two easy ways to clear all your data.  The first is to click on the three lines in the upper right-hand corner which are the history icon. 

Once there, you can individually delete websites by clicking the “X” to the right of each site listed.  Or you can delete all by clicking “Clear all history”.  This will take you to the next screen where you can select up to eleven different data sets you wish you clear out, including your history, cache, cookies, and form data.

The other way you can access this same information is by clicking on the “more” icon in the upper right hand corner represented by three dots.  From there you select “Settings”.  On this page you can change your theme, make changes to how your tabs operate, and clear your browsing history, among other things.  Once you click on “Choose what to clear”, it will take you to the same screen as shown above.

As you can see, this is far easier as you can delete all your data in one move, as opposed to having to delete your cache/cookies and history separately; not to mention any other data sets you wish to have stricken from the records.  If you have any other questions, feel free to contact Optfinity anytime.

By -- 2017-05-15 in Blog

 

The largest ransomware attack in history has already infected over 114,000 Windows systems worldwide.  Many of these infections were on older, unsupported versions of Windows such as XP, Vista, and Windows 8.  There is a reason any IT professional will advise you to upgrade to any current OS; these systems are constantly supported and updated to ensure the highest level of safety and security.

But in the wake of this unprecedented infection, Microsoft has released an emergency security patch update for all its versions of Windows, including those no longer supported.  So, if you’re still utilizing one of these operating systems, download and update now!

This security breach has not only affected small businesses and individuals in over 99 countries, it has also infected such large corporations as Spain’s Telefonica, Russia’s MegaFon, FedEx, and the National Health Service in the U.K.  The latter of these forcing the rejection of patients, cancelation of operations, and rescheduling of appointments due to the infection.

What can you do?  For starters, follow the seven steps listed in the article, including keeping your system up-to-date and be mindful of phishing emails, which is the main way this ransomware affects users.  You should also hire professional IT support to ensure you’re always protected, including having a secure and robust back-up system.  Optfinity offers free assessments, so if you’re unsure if your company will survive a possible infection, contact us today.  No pressure, no sales gimmicks, just honest care and advice to help small businesses stay safe in this highly dangerous cyber world.

By -- 2017-05-9 in Blog

 

Recently, both Google and Facebook were victims of fraud in which the criminal managed to convincingly impersonate an Asian manufacturer, generate fraudulent emails from the company, and invoice those huge companies for millions of dollars.  This was done by simply forging invoices, contracts, and letters from the victim companies.

Luckily, Google and Facebook are large enough to have weathered this crime and could recover almost all the money that was swindled away.  But could your company survive a similar fraud attempt, if even for a small fraction of the dollars stolen?

How often are you double checking invoices, letters, and contracts to ensure they are legally representative of the company you are doing business with?  It doesn’t take but a minute to call your trusted point of contact at the company you’re contracting with to verify addresses, bank accounts, etc.  You may think this is redundant or a waste of employees’ time, but don’t forget that a simple verification task can potentially save you from sending your money to a fraudster trying to steal your hard-earned money.

By -- 2017-04-26 in Blog

 

As in every case involving your personal information, you should be wary of giving it out to strangers, especially when being solicited.  The newest scammer craze is being targeted through LinkedIn by a spammer emailing contacts letting them know they are urgently seeking workers.

These emails inform the person that they match qualifications they are seeking for jobs in your region.  There is no specificity in the email, it does not originate from a real LinkedIn address, and has countless spelling and grammatical errors.  Those red flags alone should be enough to stop you in your tracks.  But there are still many out there who would fall for this.

Aside from endangering yourself and your personal data, you also open your company to fraud.  These cases, also known as CEO fraud, have resulted in companies losing upwards of tens of millions of dollars.  So, ensuring your staff is well trained on how to avoid being a victim of scammers not only protects them, but also your company’s bottom line.

By -- 2017-04-26 in Blog

 

This is a fascinating article on artificial intelligence, where its been and where its going, and how we got there; but moreover, have you thought about how AI may affect your business years down the road?  Are you prepared for the changes and challenges that such technology might present?

The article talks about three waves of AI, the first including such technology as Google Maps, smart phones, and traffic lights.  Do you think every business which made maps for your car is still in business?  How about encyclopedia companies, pagers, or crossing guards?  Future AI technology is anticipated to replace most human workers in many fields.  What are you doing to anticipate and prepare for this new technology tidal wave to ensure your business does not go under?

A first step in all this is to ensure you have a fully-functioning and knowledgeable IT component within your organization looking out for your best interests.  There are many basic steps companies fail at, such as fully integrated websites, mobile apps, cloud storage, and disaster recovery systems.  Once you’ve read the article and watched the fascinating video, contact Optfinity today for a free assessment and take your first step in putting your company on the right path to navigating the technology maze just ahead.

By -- 2017-04-26 in Blog

 

As a company or organization, you have a legal requirement to retain information and communication.  Studies show that most employees have no idea what these policies are, and chances are, neither do you.  Read the full article to see what the actual statistics are.

These policies should not only include what to retain and for how long, but also your company’s policies on personal computer usage, personal emails, and social media.  Not only can these issues pose problems for the company and its data retention, but it can also pose privacy problems of which most employees are not aware.

Don’t forget, if you’re using your company’s WiFi on your personal device, that data is not private and your company now has access to it.  Likewise, when you use your company email to contact your doctor, financial advisor, or lawyer, your private information is now the property of your company. 

By -- 2017-04-17 in Blog

 

How would you feel if you knew you were responsible for the hacking of others’ websites?  What if you could have prevented it?   The problem is that in today’s technology connected world, things like this are happening all the time because every device out there is a mini computer and if not updated and secured, that device could be taken over to bring down websites all over the world.   Check out this article for more information and, if you are concerned about your businesses devices, contact us at OptfinITy. 

 

By -- 2017-03-29 in Blog

 

We all write emails all day long, sending them to friends, family, colleagues, vendors, existing and future clients/customers.  Are you aware that how you end your email can directly affect the response rate from these emails, especially if you’re asking for advice or help and expecting a reply?

The least effective way to end an email is with “regards” or “best”, and the most effective way to end is with some form of “thanks or thanks in advance”.  Likewise, your sign-off should be equally grateful as “thanks in advance” had the highest response rate and “best” had the lowest.

Don’t forget to be equally appreciative when on the receiving end of these emails.  And while you’re welcome and no problem are just fine, “I know you’d do the same for me” tops the list.  As an IT service support company, we try to always thank all our clients every time we communicate with them.  So, if you’re missing out on having a vendor show you their appreciation, we’ll show you how much we care by first offering a free assessment of your IT systems.

By -- 2017-03-29 in Blog

 

Do you have your elevator pitch ready?  You know, those 90 second speeches you have prepared to give at networking events and run-ins with colleagues.  Did you know, even if you haven’t given one professionally, you’ve probably already given them when trying to explain to your family and friends what you do for a living? 

There are four simple things to include to help you perfect these pitches.  Capturing your audience’s attention by talking about how great your company is doing, who your customers are and what problem you’re solving, how the problem is currently being solved and how you’ll do it differently, and explaining how your solution is the best.  There are a few more steps if you’re trying to attract venture capitalists, but the concept is the same.

Not sure how a strong IT services support fits into all this?  Well, you won’t have a functioning business if all your systems go down due to hacking, or you will lose your customers if your phone systems and website go down, you also won’t have a good presentation to give if you’re staff are not up to date on their software knowledge to put it all together.  Not to mention that most businesses run entirely online, in the cloud, or behind software.  Optfinity offers free assessments to help every business truly understand their demands, needs, and wants to function at peak capacity.