Is Your Business at Risk for Disruption?

If you haven’t felt disruption in your industry, it’s likely only a matter of time. In a recent Forbes survey of business leaders, 51% of executives saw disruption as posing a high level of risk to their companies, while only 13% could be considered true leaders in leveraging data to drive growth. We are still in the midst of a digital revolution, wherein businesses are becoming smarter and more efficient—and reaching new customers—through technological innovation, from big data to AI and automation.

All this means that technology, far from being a necessary evil, is becoming a strategic, competitive advantage for forward-thinking companies. Which, on the flipside, means that companies that do not see technology as an opportunity to get ahead of the competition are at risk of being on the losing end of disruption.

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How to Maintain Cyber Security When Working with Freelancers and Subcontractors

It’s no secret that, in what many have dubbed the “gig economy,” the number of freelancers and the types of work they offer have grown in recent years. According to Forbes, a third of today’s workforce identifies as a “subcontractor”. Millennials make up 40% of this workforce, and 92% of millennials, in general, desire to work in a freelance capacity.

For many small and mid-sized businesses, this has been a welcome development. Freelancers and subcontractors provide flexibility for businesses, allowing them to avoid the expense of full-time employees for part-time needs, as well as the flexibility to hire seasonally, when demand is high.

Still, the use of freelancers and subcontractors without strategically considering how they will mesh with your current employees, processes, and information systems can pose serious risks for your company—especially when it comes to cyber security. A revolving cast of subcontractors, combined with a lack of appropriate security safeguards on your network and data systems, is a recipe for disaster.

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Allowing Workers to Telecommute? Make Sure Your IT Facilitates Collaborative and Secure Remote Work.

Telecommuting is increasingly common in today's business landscape. For some businesses, it's a worthwhile model for boosting productivity and adding flexibility to their workforce. Depending on your company's culture, this may be an attractive option.

It’s important to remember, though, that a productive telecommuting policy requires significant investment in and strategy around IT. Technology is, after all, the lynchpin that will keep your remote workers connected with others in your organization and with the assets—from business data to key software applications—that will keep them productive. And telecommuting necessarily involves relying on technology that is outside of your physical premises, leading to a greater potential for cyber security risk.

With the right approach to technology and the right safeguards in place, though, businesses can implement smart telecommuting and remote work options that can boost employee flexibility and productivity—and thus positively impact the bottom line.

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Recent Studies Show Small Businesses Are Big Targets for Cyberattacks — And May Have The Most to Lose

It's not uncommon for small and mid-sized companies to assume they’re safe from cyber criminals. They reason that their smaller scale and lower level of visibility make them less enticing to would-be crooks.

Unfortunately, this is a mistake.

According to recent cyber security studies, small businesses may be a bigger, and easier, target than larger ones. Criminals suspect, too often accurately, that small businesses may not be paying enough attention to protecting their data. 

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Are Your Employees' Passwords on the Dark Web? Find out with Dark Web Monitoring.

Are Your Employees' Passwords on the Dark Web? Find out with Dark Web Monitoring.

The internet you browse and make your living on every day probably feels like an endless expanse. There are countless websites on every topic imaginable. However, the reality is that what we conventionally think of as the internet makes up only about a tenth of cyberspace. An estimated 90% of the web is occupied by an unstructured, unregulated expanse called the Dark Web. If your information—usernames and passwords, financial information, personally identifiable information, etc.—finds its way into the wrong hands on the Dark Web, either by mismanagement or accident, your business is at risk for dangerous levels of exposure. The good news is that advanced cyber security tools like Dark Web monitoring can help protect your business and preserve your peace of mind.

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91% of Cyber Attacks Begin With Phishing. Train Your Employees with These Tools.

91% of Cyber Attacks Begin With Phishing. Train Your Employees with These Tools.

Assuming that your company has the appropriate baseline cyber security safeguards in place, the greatest threat to your data security is likely social engineering attacks—where fraudsters prey on the human instinct to trust in order to trick your employees into giving up access to information or funds. The most common social engineering attacks come in the form of phishing emails. And, unfortunately, these have a huge impact on business security; researchers estimate that around 91% of data breaches begin with a phishing email.

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Windows 7 Support Ends on 1/14/2020. Here's How to Prepare.

It may be hard to believe, but Windows 7 is now 10 years old. In computer years, that’s ancient, which is why Microsoft will stop supporting the OS on January 14, 2020

This means that if you have computers running Windows 7 in your business, you will need to take action before the end of support date. To help you understand the implications of this change for your business, and to jumpstart your planning, here’s a list of frequently asked questions about the end of support for Windows 7.

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Mobile Devices and Your Workforce: Reducing the Threats Created by "Lost" or "Stolen" Devices

Mobile Devices and Your Workforce: Reducing the Threats Created by "Lost" or "Stolen" Devices

A lost or stolen corporate device is a major threat to a company’s data security and privacy. It is critical to develop an IT strategy that protects sensitive organizational information even if this worst case scenario occurs.

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Tools Are Not Enough: Why Your Company Needs a Cyber Security Process

Every week, new cyber security tools come on the market for small and mid-sized businesses. Tools that previously were only imaginable for government entities and the largest enterprises are now priced at a level at which most businesses can use them to keep their data—and their customers’ data—safe.

Should your business take advantage of these tools? Absolutely. From advanced threat detection to penetration testing and patch automation, these tools can make a huge impact on your business’s security—and your ability to sleep at night.

It’s critical, though, to note that cyber security is not a problem that can be solved by tools alone, or even by the right set of tools, in one fell swoop. True cyber security—security that grows and adapts with your business—can only be achieved with an ongoing process of constantly evaluating the risks your business faces and the measures you are taking to mitigate those risks. 

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Outsourced IT in Nashville: A Guide for the Retail Industry

Outsourced IT in Nashville: A Guide for the Retail Industry

Retail industry technology is evolving at an extraordinary rate. More and more, retailers are turning to outsourced IT to maintain their competitive edge in the industry.

To the point: over the last 6 months, the internet has seen a rash of blackmail spam schemes. The most common of these involve emails suggesting that the sender, a hacker, has hijacked the recipient’s computer and recorded evidence of the recipient viewing pornography. The sender threatens to send that evidence to the recipient’s contact list—unless the recipient sends a Bitcoin payment to a provided address.

So, what should you do if you receive one of these emails? Read on to find out

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Blackmail Spam Schemes: Why You’re Seeing Them, and What You Need to Know

Unfortunately, email remains one of the most effective methods of attack for cybercriminals. That’s why, as a trusted managed services provider, we want to keep both our clients and the community at large up to date on the latest spam schemes to crop up. Awareness is half the battle in cyber security, and we want to do our part to spread it.

To the point: over the last 6 months, the internet has seen a rash of blackmail spam schemes. The most common of these involve emails suggesting that the sender, a hacker, has hijacked the recipient’s computer and recorded evidence of the recipient viewing pornography. The sender threatens to send that evidence to the recipient’s contact list—unless the recipient sends a Bitcoin payment to a provided address.

So, what should you do if you receive one of these emails? Read on to find out

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