Entries by ABaker

Don’t You Be Singing those Black Friday Buyer Beware Blues

Alongside links to Amazon, Home Depot, Staples, etc. Google’s sponsored shopping sections also show unfamiliar stores with lower prices than those of the well-known retailers. But are these really good deals? Here are some ways to see if an inexpensive site is really going to get you what you want. None of these are absolute […]

Low-Down on Office 365

Last week, Microsoft rolled out its promised “Unverified Sender” enhancement to Office 365 to help users “identify suspicious messages” (i.e. spam or phishing emails) that reach the Outlook inbox. 1 This comes after a bulletin in which Microsoft urged Office 365 administrators and users to not turn off its built-in spam filters to “minimize the potential of a data breach or a compromised account.” 2

Many users are mistaken that there are different kinds of protections to their data in the cloud. But the risks of data loss or compromised data are no less of a problem in the cloud than in a modern server, desktop or phone.

Infographic: Tips for detecting a phishing email

Phishing emails are getting more complex all the time.  As the stakes rise, cyber criminals are employing increasingly subtle techniques and messaging.  Gone are the days when you simply had to turn down preposterous offers from royalty who had miraculously decided to become your unlikely benefactor.

The phishing email of today is designed to look as legitimate as possible.  It will try to distract you from clues that give away its true intent by creating a sense of urgency.  Typically they front as legitimate emails from familiar sources, sometimes even appearing to come from within your own organization.

Fortunately, once you know what to look for, these emails will be as easy to spot as those starting “I am a prince from [insert  random country name here], and I wish to bathe you in riches…”

The Compliance Effect

The Managed Security Service Providers journal, MSSP Insider, interviewed Bryley president Gavin Livingstone about General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 1 compliance.

“Our manufacturing clients were especially observant and working toward [regulatory] compliance,” said Gavin. The interview was prompted by a survey by Scale Venture Partners, Cybersecurity Perspectives 2019 2 . In the report, 2018 data breaches like at Exactis, exposures like at Cambridge Analytica, and regulations like GDPR triggered businesses to improve cybersecurity and increase investment in their security solutions. As a result fifty-five percent of the surveyed executives increased their investment in new solutions, forty-nine percent increased their measurement and reporting around data privacy, and forty-eight percent increased investment in data privacy personnel.

The Mysteries of Microsoft’s Model for Windows

“All they had to do was come up with a way to charge ten bucks a month and now no one steals music,” I overheard a college student say. He was talking about how Apple transformed from selling software (mp3s via iTunes) to renting access to songs, aka Software as a Service (SaaS). Apple Music now has the most paid music subscribers in the US and based on this success, “announced new subscription offerings for magazines, TV shows and video games”. 1

Per Forbes, 84% of new software is being delivered as SaaS. 2 This selling model built Netflix memberships (20 million renters at the height of its DVD service compared to over 150 million SaaS subscribers today 3 ), Dollar Shave Club razors, Stitch Fix and Amazon’s Subscribe and Save. Subscriptions moved Adobe’s market cap more than 87% since 2012 to $108 billion. 4

The Snoopiness of Things

The 2015 Arkansas murder case that depended on smart-home devices, made the news again as the judge in the civil case upheld his ruling that James Bates is financially liable for the death of Victor Collins. The case against the accused was built on, among other forensics, records from Amazon whose Echo device was installed by the scene of Collins’ death, as well as evidence from a so-called smart meter. The smart meter reported inordinate usage of water around the time of death, which led the police to argue that a bloody patio was hosed down.

World Backup Day 2019

Celebrated On March 31st Data is essential to us all.  We rely on it complete even the most basic daily tasks, and yet it is so easy to take for granted. World Backup Day was established to remind us of the importance of data in our lives, and why we must make a sincere effort […]

National Battery Day 2019

National Battery Day is observed on February 18, 2019. Think on that day about the usefulness of the batteries – and charging some up again, if you like. Recognize, just how important the simple battery is to our way of life. In electricity, a battery is a device consisting of one or more electrochemical cells […]

Safer Internet Day!

Tuesday, February 5th is Safer Internet Day.  Being observed on the first Tuesday in February, what started out as a campaign to raise awareness about Internet safety is now celebrated in over 100 countries worldwide. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, many of us will go online for gifts such as flowers, candy, cute […]

Tips to Troubleshoot Common, but Annoying Computer Problems

Just about everything requires a computer these days. When your computer works, it’s great. When a problem arises, the first thing to do is try not to panic.

There are many different things that could cause a problem with your computer. No matter what’s causing the issue, troubleshooting will always be a process of trial and error. You may find yourself trying a few different approaches before you can find a solution. Some issues are easy to fix and others may require the help from a professional, but if you decide to try to tackle it on your own here are a few tips.