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Strata Information Technology Blog

Strata Information Technology has been serving the Encino area since 2007, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Do Not Sacrifice Security for Mobility

Do Not Sacrifice Security for Mobility

As a business owner security should be of the utmost importance to you and your business. Adapting to the modern age means implementing different strategies to adapt to employee physical location, travelling employees, or even employees dealing with circumstantial dilemmas such as health problems or family matters. Whilst your business can experiment with different off-site methods, there should always be one constant: security.

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Tip of the Week: Signatures Are More Than Just Your Name

Tip of the Week: Signatures Are More Than Just Your Name

Signatures are unique to the signatory. With the introduction and acceptance of electronic signatures, personalizing your signature has become more difficult. However, did you know introducing something as simple as a Gmail signature can give some credibility to your business communications? 

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Former Fraudster Says to Stop Using Debit Cards

Former Fraudster Says to Stop Using Debit Cards

When over 16 million people are scammed out of over $16 billion, there’s likely some type of problem that needs to be addressed. Famous con artist, Frank Abagnale, the man immortalized in Steven Spielberg’s Catch Me If You Can, a movie that was based off his own memoir, has been working as a security consultant with the Federal Bureau of Investigation for over 45 years. In that time, he has become an expert in cybersecurity and fraud prevention.

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Finding Value in Blockchain

Finding Value in Blockchain

When searching for value within blockchain, you do not have to look hard nor far. Blockchain’s incorruptibility encourages other potential uses in the tech community. Today we will take a look into what blockchain technology is as well as other ways we can utilize this technology. 

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Tip of the Week: How to Download Videos from Social Media

Tip of the Week: How to Download Videos from Social Media

Social media has taken the world by storm, in no small part because of the videos that people share. We’ve all seen a shared video that we’ve wanted to keep. That’s why this blog will take you through the process of downloading videos from Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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VoIP Has More Features Than You Thought

VoIP Has More Features Than You Thought

Many small businesses are making the switch to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). VoIP is able to provide many advantages over traditional landlines. Today, we will discuss features that even if you’ve already made the switch, you might not be taking advantage of. 

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Making the Chromecast a Handy Business Tool

Making the Chromecast a Handy Business Tool

Google’s contribution to streaming, the Chromecast, is a nifty little device. While many might hear “streaming” and immediately think “consumer device,” the Chromecast can actually offer your business a few handy utilities as well. Here, we’ll go over four of them, as well as guide your through setting up (and if necessary, resetting) your Chromecast.

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Intro to Your Tech: RFID

Intro to Your Tech: RFID

Information, and the transmission of it, has advanced by vast amounts since our ancestors first carved shapes into cave walls to record their hunts. Nowadays, information can be shared much more efficiently, thanks to a technology known as RFID, or Radio Frequency Identification. Here, we’ll discuss this technology and its common business-friendly uses.

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Checking In on Some More Data Breaches

Checking In on Some More Data Breaches

Threats to data security are seemingly everywhere. Some companies spend millions of dollars a year on data security, but it only takes one unwitting user to tear down their huge investment. In fact, 2018 saw over 446.5 million records compromised, even if the number of data breaches dropped by almost 25 percent. Today, we will look at the biggest breaches that have happened from the beginning of May.

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Can You Recycle That Battery Safely? Can Anyone?

Can You Recycle That Battery Safely? Can Anyone?

Businesses are often concerned with taking in the latest and greatest technologies, but it seems that less attention is paid to how these technologies are disposed of when the time comes to replace them. Is there a proper way to handle electronics that have outlived their use, and how has our prioritization of upgrade schedules and smaller form factors impacted these processes?

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Google Estimates 1.5% of All Internet Passwords Vulnerable to Spearphishing

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Sometimes cybercriminals get too much credit for their ability to infiltrate businesses’ IT infrastructure. In many cases, employees’ bad password practices actually cause the vulnerability, a reality that was confirmed in a Google study released this week. 

In the report, Google estimates that 1.5% of all logins used on the internet are a vulnerability to credential stuffing attacks because they were disclosed in previous data breaches. What’s more, even when companies or employees were notified of this vulnerability, only 26% of people changed their passwords to secure their accounts. 

However, there is one silver lining. For those who did update their information, 94% created a password that was as strong or stronger than the original password. Ultimately, it’s a reminder that many security vulnerabilities are fixable, and partnering with qualified cybersecurity experts can help you identify these vulnerabilities before they create a catastrophe. 

https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/google-estimates-15-percent-of-web-logins-exposed-in-data-breaches/

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The First Half of 2019 Sees Precipitous Rise in Data Breaches

A recent report by Risk Based Security confirmed what many people already knew: data breaches are increasing in frequency and scope. 

In the first half of 2019, there were 3,816 data breaches, a 54% increase from the same period in 2018. In total, more than 4 billion records were stolen. While the majority of these records, 3.2 billion were stolen as part of eight high-profile breaches, more than one billion records were taken in lesser known data heists from smaller organizations. 

The healthcare sector led all industries with 224 data breaches while retail and finance accounted for 199 and 183 breaches respectively. Meanwhile government and education have collectively endured nearly 300 data breaches.

According to the report, email addresses and passwords were the most sought after data, occurring in more than 70% of data heists. In contrast, only 11% of data breaches contained financial information like credit card numbers.

Email addresses and passwords can be used to promulgate additional cybercrimes, and companies need to train their employees to protect this information as phishing scams and other attacks threaten the integrity of these credentials and business’ entire cyber infrastructure. For starters, implementing comprehensive awareness training can help strengthen the security of your company’s email addresses and passwords.

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The Week in Breach: 08/21/19 - 08/27/19

This week, malware makes networks unusable, gamers lose control of their personal data, and employees are stunningly resistant to improving their account passwords. 

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Tip of the Week: Getting the Most Out of Your POS System

Tip of the Week: Getting the Most Out of Your POS System

If your business is in retail, you’re going to need technology that makes it easier to function. In many cases a Point-of-Sale (POS) system--or a Point-of-Purchase system--is the right tool. The POS system looks as though it is a common device you would see in most retail or service businesses. POS platforms are available for more than just retail businesses, but it is in retail that the solution really shines. Today, we’ll take a look at the benefits a POS system will bring your company and how to ensure that your solution is right for your business.

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The Future of Windows 7

The Future of Windows 7

Did you take advantage of the free upgrade to Windows 10? This free upgrade was offered all across the globe to Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users for a limited period of time. You expect users would flock towards Microsoft’s newest operating system; so why were so few migrating to Windows 10? 

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IBM Concludes Data Breaches Aren’t Getting Any Cheaper

IBM Concludes Data Breaches Aren’t Getting Any Cheaper

Working in conjunction with the Ponemon Institute, IBM Security completed a report tracking trends in 2018’s data breaches. As you might imagine, much of the data contained in this report could be seen as troubling to a business.

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Intro to Your Tech: Dark Web

Intro to Your Tech: Dark Web

The dark web has a bad reputation - and for quite a few good reasons. However, like any tool, there is a lot of good that the dark web can be used for as well. Here, we’ll review what the dark web is, how it can be used (and abused), and what the landscape is like.

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You Have to Think Before You Click

You Have to Think Before You Click

Phishing attacks are more commonplace than you might think. Whether it’s scamming someone into sending payments to fund who knows what or simply spreading malware or viruses, these phishing attacks are a part of doing business; therefore, it’s important that you take measures to avoid some of the most clever tricks in the book. Let’s examine some of them.

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Six Critical Small Business Mistakes to Avoid

Six Critical Small Business Mistakes to Avoid

There are many obstacles that any business owner needs to avoid in order to keep themselves from backsliding like Sisyphus did in Greek myth. Some of these obstacles may not be the first that come to mind, either. Here, we’ll review six mistakes that a business owner can make that can prevent them from reaching their goals. 

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Tip of the Week: Two Taskbar Tips

Tip of the Week: Two Taskbar Tips

Microsoft Windows is run on a majority of business computers. As a result, having a good understanding of some of the features that will make using the software easier is beneficial. This week, we will go over some things you can do with the taskbar that will make navigating your computer easier. 

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