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Security Flaw in Intel Chips

Any device - PC, Mac, tablet, server – with Intel chips at risk

  • 10 January 2018
  • Author: SIM2K
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In our January 2018 issue of SIMformation we look at a serious security flaw found in Intel chips that can affect any type of device – Windows or Mac, PC, tablet or server –with an Intel chip. Two vulnerabilities, Meltdown and Spectre, pose the possibility of a hacker obtaining data, such as passwords, saved in web browsers.  We issued a preliminary alert on this on our Facebook page earlier this week when first disclosed, and here is more complete information.  We are working on installing the updates from the various vendors as they are released.

 

We also introduce the new Zip 47G phone from Zultys, our VOIP unified communications partner.  This new desktop phone has a hi-resolution, 4.3" display and supports wired and wireless headsets.  It will work on any Zultys system, premise, Cloud or server-based running MX 12 release and later.  

 

We present some basic information on Blockchain as this digital currency has been in the news recently, so here is the scoop on this.  We also cover the rumors that Google is looking to dump Android and Chrome in favor of one unified platform operating system, dubbed "Fuchsia."  Finally we have statistics on using E-mail for file sharing and why this presents a security risk, as e-mail is not a secure medium for transmitting data.

Season's Greetings from SIM2K

2017 Tech Trends set Stage for 2018

  • 20 December 2017
  • Author: SIM2K
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We close 2017 with a look at several trends this past year in technology that the experts believe will have even more impact in 2018, such as Artificial Intelligence and Virtual/Augmented Reality. For those of you who use Uber we look at the recently-disclosed hack on their database.  Have you seen an uptick in notifications you get on your smartphone?  We discuss how notifications are exploding and how you can keep them under control.  Net Neutrality is back in the news and we weigh in on that, and also discuss the costs of a data breach for affected companies and how it is more than just IT costs, but also impacts on reputation, loss of customers and more. Plus we look at what industry groups are more affected by a breach, and then what steps you can take to defend your network against hackers.  And, we have our traditional holiday message with our thanks to all our clients we serve.

IP-Based Video Systems

Video over same network as PCs

  • 15 November 2017
  • Author: SIM2K
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In our November issue, we look at Internet-Protocol (IP) based video systems.  The convergence of video over the same networks as PCs means companies no longer have to string coax cable for video as the video signal can now piggy-back on the same network as computers.  Companies are installing video for security, safety and as a crime deterrent, and SIM2K can specify, install, configure and support these video systems.  We also take a look at two of the popular note-taking programs, Microsoft's OneNote and Evernote, and compare the pros and cons of both.  Users of Google Chrome browsers will see some improvements with the new update that also fixes lots of security issues.  Microsoft is rolling out a new authorization policy for Windows 10 Enterprise which may foreshadow where the company will go with all Windows licensing in the future. And, we re-cap Cybersecurity Month with a look at the "Bad Rabbit" ransomware released at the end of October and cover our tips for securing your network from malware.

KRACK Attack breaks Wi-Fi Security

National Cybersecurity Month

  • 24 October 2017
  • Author: SIM2K
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In our October SIMformation we start with breaking news of a vulnerability in the WPA Wi-Fi security protocol.  The "KRACK Attack" is a potential chink in protected Wi-Fi traffic, so this is an important update with steps to take for your PCs and router firmware.  We also look at "Simming" – creating a synthetic identity from various "real" elements like names, addresses and social security numbers.  This is why the Equifax data breach last month is a concern, as it gives the bad guys the way to construct a new identity – but if they happen to pick your SSN or name, your credit profile is at risk.  And, since this was Cybersecurity Month, we follow up on the WannaCry ransomware attack this past summer, and what IT experts believe was behind this attack.  We discuss how Windows 10 users can pick a different Internet browser as their default rather than using Edge, and also how Microsoft plans to release Office 2019 for those companies that do not wish to subscribe to Office 365.  Finally, in an "oops" moment, a major accounting firm that markets cyber risk protection, found their Cloud-based e-mail system was hacked, exposing financial information and tax returns for clients.

Do You Need Cyberinsurance?

Risks from Ransomware, breaches, disasters and more

  • 26 September 2017
  • Author: SIM2K
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Data breaches, ransomware, data theft and more can bring a business to its knees while the damage is overcome.  A business owner's insurance policy probably isn't sufficient to cover claims from a cyber incident,  That's why we sat down with Todd Carbrey of NSB Insurance to discuss what a business owner needs to consider for good coverage in a cyberinsurance policy.  Likewise, with the two hurricanes that hit Texas and Florida, do you have a business continuity and disaster recovery plan for your business?  Both topics are discussed in this month's issue.  The Equifax data breach is a major concern, and we have some information on what you should do to try to protect your personal data that may be at risk. Ransomware continues to be problematic, as estimates now say costs for infections will exceed $5 billion in 2017, and we look at how CylancePROTECT® helps bolster your defense against malware. And, we have a more in-depth look at two-factor authentication and how this provides more protection against unauthorized logins to your network. Our partnership with Duo lets us easily put two-factor authentication to work for you.

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