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Security

Security

2020 OXEN Update on Cybersecurity

Every day we read about another cybersecurity breach. Lost credit card information, hacked emails, corporate or national security information stolen by insider or external actors. Cyber espionage and security attacks have become sophisticated and big business. We have reluctantly learned a new language: ransomware, “phishing”, malware, HIPAA (in healthcare), PCI (for credit card protection), and PII (personally identifiable information) to name a few. The challenge grows even faster as more and more devices are attached to our networks. New devices like thermostats, smart lights, cell phones, watches, and smart monitors of all types connect to our networks to share information.…
OTWAdmin
January 20, 2020
AnnouncementsOffice 365Security

Keep Your Tech Relevant: Are You Prepared for Microsoft End of Support Deadlines?

There are multiple Microsoft products reaching end of support in 2020. These versions are being retired and will no longer have technical support. We’ve previously talked about the end of support for the Windows 7 operating system and Windows Server 2008 on January 14, 2020. However, other products are also reaching end of support in 2020. On January 31, 2020, Internet Explorer 10 will be retired. If you're already upgrading to Windows 10 or using Microsoft Edge as your web browser, then you've taken the next step to upgrade from IE 10. Later, in October 2020, Microsoft Office 2010 is…
OTWAdmin
January 6, 2020
Security

Increase Your Network Security

Wireless networks are a gift to anyone seeking easy connectivity and a quick Wi-Fi connection. But don't forget that rushing through your network's setup can have security consequences later. Make sure you've addressed these areas, whether it's for your personal network at home or your business's, to improve your network security. Change your access point or router's default username and password. Default usernames and passwords for most hardware and software can easily be found online. Turn on encryption. All Wi-Fi devices support at least some type of encryption. Change your network's name or SSID from the default. A default name…
OTWAdmin
December 16, 2019
InfrastructureLeadershipSecurity

5 Tips on Managing & Planning Your Technology in 2020

In the IT industry, there are always new projects and upgrades coming, plus new concerns and trends. What should you consider implementing in 2020? Here are our tips for what to keep in mind when managing your cybersecurity risks and planning for the future. #1 Is your Windows Software wanted dead or alive? Are you still running Windows 7 and/or Windows Server 2008? Are you on Windows 8, but not yet ready to step up to Windows 10 and the latest updates? Remember that both Windows 7 and Server 2008 hit end of life in January 2020. Windows 8 reached…
OTWAdmin
December 10, 2019
Security

Ransomware Lessons for City Governments

U.S. towns and cities are being hit hard by ransomware and cyberattacks A city government's network is a prime target for hackers. Many small towns and cities don't have the tools, personnel, or budget to fight back. And when an attack is successful, who is to blame? Cities like Lake City, Florida have been in the news recently for falling victim to devastating ransomware attacks and the consequences afterwards. Lake City, Florida's computer network was devastated within hours. Their security and backup defenses were no match for expert hackers and sophisticated spear phishing campaigns. Their budget never extended to cover…
OTWAdmin
November 11, 2019
AnnouncementsSecurity

Upgrade from Windows 7 to Remain Secure and Stable

It’s still coming whether we like it or not: Windows 7 End of Life. If your organization is still running Windows 7, what can you expect? Is this truly the end of Windows 7, and should you upgrade? The answer, realistically, is yes. It’s a smart move to upgrade now, for security and stability. Mainstream support for Windows 7 ended in 2015. Extended support ends on January 14, 2020. Windows 7 is now end-of-life. It will not be supported, nor will it receive regular patches and security updates. What's the risk of not upgrading? Failing to upgrade to supported software,…
OTWAdmin
October 14, 2019
Cloud SolutionsOffice 365Security

What Is Microsoft 365 vs. Office 365?

You may have started to hear about Microsoft 365. Is it the same as the similarly named “Office 365”? The two are different, and here we’ll explain the difference and what Microsoft 365 Business can offer your organization. First of all, Microsoft 365 is not the same thing as Office 365. Office 365 is a cloud-based suite of productivity apps, such as Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook. It’s the modern, cloud-based version of the Microsoft Office suite of products you’re probably familiar with already. Microsoft 365 Business is a bundle of services that include the apps and productivity tools of…
OTWAdmin
September 16, 2019
Security

How to Protect Your Business Against Former Employees

We’ve said this frequently, and we’ll say it again. One of the biggest security weaknesses that businesses face are their own employees. This isn’t pleasant, but it’s a truth that we have to face. Humans are a weak link in our cybersecurity defenses. When we make mistakes – forgetting to change a default password or clicking on a link we shouldn’t – we open the door for attackers. But there’s another way that your people can threaten your organization. It's from within: disgruntled or dissatisfied former employees. These are people who are no longer with your business but may still…
OTWAdmin
September 9, 2019
LeadershipSecurity

2019 State of the IT Industry Landscape, Part 3: Cybersecurity

In this portion of our 2019 update on the state of the IT industry, we review many of the pertinent and pressing statistics of the need for cybersecurity. It’s easy to paint an overwhelmingly complex and urgent picture of cybersecurity. However, we aim to balance the flood of data with digestible overview of the situation. Industry Trends: Cybersecurity Bottomline: Our cybersecurity risks and cost associated with them will never be lower than they are today. OXEN’s 2017 summary of cybersecurity for small businesses concluded that SMB IT security is viewed as a necessary but unwelcome cost, rather than as an…
OTWAdmin
July 29, 2019
LeadershipSecurity

The Shared CIO Role: Evolving IT Leadership to Serve You Better

I hope it’s OK to write about something other than the newest cloud feature or the latest tech gadget, because I’m not going to talk about new technologies in this article. Rather, I would like to talk about the necessary leadership in today’s businesses. Not so long ago, the only IT goal of any business was to find someone who could do the work of implementing, upgrading, and maintaining technology. It was a hard-to-find skill set, and it was even difficult to find someone able to set up a basic network. That is not the case today. There are IT…
Ryan Pieken
July 8, 2019