Up Times · February 2022

Up Times

by Bryley · November 2023


Patrick Walsh Promoted to Senior Field Technician

Bryley Systems is pleased to announce the promotion of Patrick Walsh from IT Field Technician to Senior IT Field Technician. In his new role, Patrick will be responsible for leading a team of techs in support of its clients’ IT environments.

Patrick has a history of success at Bryley: supporting clients – early in his time at Bryley he migrated many client devices to M365, solving tech problems and winning plaudits from those he’s worked with. During his time at Bryley he’s embraced the field tech role, showing not only technical expertise, but also peer-recognized troubleshooting skills with a determination to see that people are properly helped … [3 min. read]

The often empty promise of social media shopping

When the Going Gets Tough

New data from the Federal Trade Commission shows that scams originating on social media have accounted for $2.7 billion in reported losses since 2021, more than any other contact method …

Reports during the first half of [2023] show that the most frequently reported scams on social media are related to online shopping, with 44 percent of reports pointing to fraud related to buying or selling products online. [source: FTC]

Social media shopping has grown huge: 67% of shoppers in 2022 purchased through social media channels and this course we’re on shows no signs of changing. And while it’s easy to see why people do it (among the reasons: more time spent on social media than with traditional media, the simulated, relaxed feeling of a community and the ease-of-purchase), it doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t see if what we’re doing is in our best interests. Or at least ask, ‘can we do it better?’ … [4 min. read]

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Business Continuity Mixtape – Bryley-curated stories from around the internet:

Computer FTCPutting some English on it The FTC has created a plain-language overview of cybersecurity principles and practices with topics like email spoofing, ransomware and physical security. And it has a couple of videos and a reinforcing quiz. One of the highlights is an outline of the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) framework which is a valuable guideline for success in an organization’s cybersecurity posture … [up to a 30 min. read depending on your selections] ftc.gov

Adobe Content Credentials

Coming at it another way — Social engineering attacks can now include deepfakes – for instance faked audio of a boss making a purchase request. Images can be faked too – often with the intent to defame, sometimes for the purposes of extortion. Adobe has taken an interesting tack to combat fake images by introducing a new meta-tag (hidden text, revealed when a somewhat subtle ‘info’ star button is clicked). The meta-tag’s text shows a record of the origin and changes to the image in question. It’s commendable that Adobe’s made the project open source, while in practice so far I’ve only seen the implementations in Adobe’s own software (and Pixelstream an Adobe-affiliated platform) … [2 min. read] contentauthenticity.org


The strategy to destabilize — In October, Cybersecurity Awareness Month, a Hartford cybersecurity panel headed by the state’s Chief Information Officer, discussed business and election destabilization that arrives via cybercrime.

Kazem Kazerounian dean of UConn’s School of Engineering said that we measure [cybersecurity] by two metrics: one is the value of the target and the second one is the size of the surface attack. When you look at election systems, they are both extremely large. What makes it even worse is that an attack can succeed by simply creating a perception of success, that is, the criminals are affecting our perception about the trustworthiness of the electoral system.

In fact, last month the US intelligence community found evidence that Russian actors made a concerted effort to undermine faith in the voting process in at least nine countries, including the United States, between 2020 and 2022, per the Washington Post.

Ransomware gangs draw from a similar playbook to rot people’s trust in an organization. Recovery from ransomware is costly, but of no less impact are the reputation damage, litigation and loss of regulatory compliance businesses often have to face. So for businesses it’s a blow that’s commonly insurmountable. 75% of small businesses polled … said they’d be able to survive only three to seven days following a [successful] ransomware attack, per Tech Republic.

A well-conceived defensive posture is the way to minimize the incidence of these cyberattacks. The Hartford panel recommended the use of strong passwords, encrypted servers, employee training, and as Dean Kazerounian said, we have to ultimately use AI in our defenses [to combat the] bad players who use AI … [4 min. read] ctinsider.com

Eyeing computer screen

Gimme a break – The rates of myopia, or near-sightedness, observed in children are skyrocketingfrom 25 percent in 1971 to nearly 42 percent in 2017, per the National Geographic.

Myopia’s particularly problematic in young people, because it can be a sign of more significant future eye issues. The consensus reasoning behind the troubling trend seems to be too much time indoors and not enough time outdoors – though the dramatic rise pre-dates smart phones.

The brightness of outdoors, according to a theory from researcher Ian Morgan, stimulates dopamine which signals the eyeball to slow myopic distortion … [7 min. read] nationalgeographic.com

Note: The Mixtape section is Bryley’s curated list of external stories. Bryley does not take credit for the content of these stories, nor does it endorse or imply an affiliation with the authors or publications in which they appear.

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