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We are starting to hear from clients interested in IT capital expenditures or projects they want to accomplish before the end of the calendar year for both operational and tax deduction purposes – in many instances equipment purchases and IT projects can be strategically structured to make the tax savings substantial. If you are also looking at end of year IT spending, we encourage you to get in touch as soon as possible so that we can help meet your goals and timing.  Read more...


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used with permission from Microsoft On the Issues, by Athima Chansanchai

A message pops up on your screen. It screams that your computer is at risk or has been infected by a virus. Or, you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from tech support.

And then, before you know it, responding to these warnings has delivered your passwords and personal information to scammers, your PC is under their control and now they’re extorting you by peddling bogus security software and services.

A new Microsoft survey of 16 countries released this month, focused on tech support scams and their impact on consumers, shows less people are now susceptible to these scams. And the percentage of respondents who’ve been exposed to them is decreasing. Overall, people are losing less money. This 2018 Global Tech Support Scam Research report follows an earlier one Microsoft released in 2016.

Just in time for October, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, this research revealed consumers have developed a healthy skepticism about unsolicited contact from technology and software companies.  Read more...


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used with permission from Tektonika (HP), by Karen Gilleland

“Gimme the dough—or you’ll never see your files again!” In this scenario, the thug in the mask is ransomware, and it’s only one of the ways cybercriminals attack businesses—which are often left vulnerable due to poor business security or cybersecurity practices. Alongside the devastating effects cyber attacks can have on individuals, cybercriminals are sucking billions of dollars out of the economy, and you do not want your business in that position.

Toward the end of 2017, the US government passed H.R.2105, a law aimed at helping businesses beef up their cybersecurity by providing guidelines about effective tools and strategies to combat the rise of cybercrime. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has been charged with developing a comprehensive set of guidelines by October 2018, but what can you do while waiting around for that to happen? Start firming up your IT environment with the following tips, of course.  Read more...


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Update: Microsoft has stopped deploying build 1809 due to reports of lost data. At this time there is not a new release window. More information can be found at this link.

Microsoft Windows runs 87% of the world’s computers.

Windows 10 is the latest version and keeps evolving to bring you the best experience when it comes to your phone and PC.

In October 2018 the latest update to the popular software is rolling out and there are even more changes. But which features are really worth your while and which are just fluff?

Here are five of the most exciting Windows 10 features new in October.

Dark Mode

One of the most simplest yet biggest updates to Windows is Dark Mode.

But why is dark mode so popular? There are three main reasons.

One reason is a dark screen will extend your battery life, which is always welcome. Another reason is that less blue light has been proven to help your sleep cycle.  Read more...


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used with permission from FTC.gov., by Amy Hebert

Tech support scams, which get people to pay for fake computer help or steal their personal information, are convincing. You might already know the signs of a tech support scam, but do your friends and family? Here’s what they need to know now:

  • Companies like Microsoft don’t call and ask for access to your computer. If you get a call like that, it’s a scam.
  • Real companies also won’t ask for your account passwords. Only scammers do.
  • Tech support scammers try to convince you they’re legitimate. They’ll pretend to know about a problem on your computer. They’ll ask you to open normal files that look alarming to make you think you need help.
  • If you do need computer help, go directly to a person, business, or website you know you can trust. General online searches are risky because they might pull up another scam.
  Read more...

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used with permission from Tektonika (HP), by Karen Gilleland

Unlike fine wine, your cyber assets don’t get better with age. Any PC more than four years old is not only costly to keep, but it’s also hack-friendly tech that could pose serious office security risk. Old PCs lack the built-in security triggers needed to repel the thousands of malware threats discovered each hour. With new technology, you could avoid 70–80 percent of the top malware detected.

Down-level hardware could potentially jeopardize your business—and that risk carries a price tag far exceeding an investment in state-of-the-art technology. As Two River Community Bank put it, “The risk just isn’t worth it.” There’s no reason to stick with outdated hardware, especially when computing power is growing exponentially and faster than ever. Older hardware may be costing you precious time, and the longer you delay updating old equipment, the further behind you’ll fall in the skills, knowledge, and technology needed to compete with companies on top of the curve.  Read more...


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Computer technology is no longer a new frontier. In fact, over 85 percent of households in America have at least one computer.

With this tech being so accessible, it’s easy to feel like a computer whiz. However, there are tons of simple, time-saving daily tips and tricks that you may be missing out on.

Did you know that you can privately browse the Internet or save your laptop’s dying battery in the nick of time? And it’s easier than you think.

Curious to know more? Keep reading.

We’ll review some computer tricks everyone should know in 2018. Let’s get started!

1. Scrolling Shortcuts
If you’re perusing a long web page or document, scrolling can get tedious. This is where handy scrolling shortcuts come in.

To scroll down, press the spacebar. To scroll up, press the shift key and the spacebar at the same time. Simple computer tips like this will save you a surprising amount of time and energy while working and browsing.  Read more...


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used with permission from FTC.gov., by Cristina Miranda

“I know about the secret you are keeping from your wife and everyone else. You can ignore this letter, or pay me a $8600 confidentiality fee in Bitcoin”.

It’s enough to send shivers down anyone’s spine, but these chilling words are part of a new scam targeting men.

Here’s how it works. Scammers have been sending letters to men, demanding payments using bitcoin in exchange for keeping quiet about alleged affairs. The letter also explains how to use bitcoin to make the payment.

This is a criminal extortion attempt to separate people from their money.

If you — or someone you know — gets a letter like this, report it immediately to your local police, and the FBI.

Threats, intimidation and high-pressure tactics are classic signs of a scam. Learn how to stay ahead of clever crooks with these practical tips, and check out the ways you can keep your personal information secureRead more...


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used with permission from FTC.gov, by Colleen Tressler

With the summer travel season in high gear, the FTC is warning drivers about skimming scams at the pump.

Skimmers are illegal card readers attached to payment terminals.  These card readers grab data off a credit or debit card’s magnetic stripe without your knowledge. Criminals sell the stolen data or use it to buy things online. You won’t know your information has been stolen until you get your statement or an overdraft notice.

Here are a few tips to help you avoid a skimmer when you gas up:

  • Make sure the gas pump panel is closed and doesn’t show signs of tampering. Many stations now put security seals over the cabinet panel. If the pump panel is opened, the label will read “void.”
    Photo credit: National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) and Conexxus
  • Look at the card reader itself. Does it look different than other readers at the station?
  Read more...

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Microsoft will soon be disabling the ability to add new connected accounts to Office 365 and Outlook Online. This update will only affect Office365 Business accounts. This change will prevent you from being able to read or send mail from any email addresses that are not controlled by Office 365. New accounts will no longer be able to be connected starting September 15th. On October 30th all connected email accounts will stop syncing. This only affects the Outlook online web application and will not affect your ability to use the Outlook application installed on your computer.

While this change may be alarming Microsoft has a few suggestions, which can be in found in this article which will allow you to continue to see your other emails: link  Read more...

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