Category: Tips

Fact or Fiction? Tech Myths Explained

You’ve likely heard them all before – Mac computers can’t get viruses, incognito mode is private, and cybercrimes are committed by teenagers in basements. While there are some tiny nuggets of truth in these, they are mainly tech myths!

The reality is Macs are just as susceptible to cybercrime and incognito browsing isn’t entirely anonymous. Let’s take a closer look at the most common tech myths you can stop believing!

Incognito Mode Browsing is Private

Do you feel a bit safer using incognito mode when browsing the internet? You are not alone. Many people believe that using incognito or private browsing mode makes their online activities completely private, but this is a common tech myth.

While incognito browsing can help protect your privacy in some ways, it does not offer complete anonymity! Remember: incognito does not mean anonymous.

Here are several reasons why incognito browsing may not be as private as you think:

  1. Your internet service provider (ISP) and network administrator can still see what sites you visit. When you use incognito mode, your browsing history is not saved on your computer or device, but it is still visible to your ISP and network administrator. This means that if someone really wanted to track your online activities, they could still do so by analyzing your network traffic.
  2. Websites can still track your browsing activity. Incognito mode only prevents your browser from saving your browsing history, cookies, and form data on your device. However, websites can still track your browsing activity using other techniques.
  3. You may accidentally sign into an account. If you log in to an account while using incognito mode, your activity on that account is still tracked and logged by the website. This means that if you log in to your Google or Facebook account while using incognito mode, your activity on those accounts is still recorded by the website.

Overall, while incognito mode can be helpful in certain situations, it’s important to remember that it does not offer complete privacy protection. If you want to protect your online privacy, consider using a virtual private network (VPN), a privacy-focused browser, or other privacy protection tools and techniques in addition to incognito mode.

Angsty Teenagers Commit Cyber Crimes

Hollywood has created the “angsty teenager turned cybercriminal” stereotype, but this is largely inaccurate and does not reflect the reality of cybercrime.

Most cybercriminals are adults who are highly skilled in computer programming and have knowledge of the latest technologies and security vulnerabilities. Cybercrime is a serious and complex issue that requires sophisticated techniques and tools to accomplish, which often requires years of experience and training.

Additionally, cybercrime is not limited to hacking and other technical attacks. It includes a wide range of criminal activities, such as identity theft, phishing scams, online fraud, and even cyberbullying. These crimes can be committed by anyone, regardless of their age or technical expertise.

Mac Computers Can’t Get Viruses

Many people believe that Mac computers are immune to viruses and other types of malware, but this is a common misconception. While Macs do have some built-in security features that make them less vulnerable to certain types of malware, they can still be infected with viruses and other malicious software.

Here are a few reasons why Mac computers can still get viruses:

  1. Macs are not invincible. While it is true that Macs have historically been less targeted by hackers than Windows machines, this is changing as Macs become more popular and valuable targets. In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of malware attacks targeting Macs, including viruses, adware, ransomware, and other types of malicious software.
  2. Mac users are still vulnerable to phishing attacks. Phishing attacks are a common way for hackers to gain access to Mac computers and other devices. These attacks use social engineering techniques to trick users into revealing their login credentials or downloading malware onto their devices. Mac users are just as vulnerable to these types of attacks as Windows users.
  3. Third-party software can introduce vulnerabilities. Even if the Mac operating system is secure, third-party software such as web browsers, plugins, and other applications can introduce vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers. It’s important to keep all software up to date with the latest security patches and updates to minimize the risk of infection.

Overall, while Macs may be less vulnerable to certain types of malware compared to other operating systems, they are not immune to cyber threats. It’s important for all computer users, regardless of their platform, to take cybersecurity seriously and to implement strong security measures to protect against malware and other types of cyber threats.

More Signal Bars = Better Cell Reception

Have you ever been frustrated with your cell service even though you have “full signal bars?” Having full signal bars doesn’t always mean you will have good cell reception. The number of bars displayed on your phone is just an estimate of the signal strength in your area. Cell service depends on many different factors.

Here are some reasons why more signal bars do not always mean better cell service:

  1. Distance from the cell tower: The farther you are from a cell tower, the weaker the signal will be, even if your phone displays full bars. This can cause dropped calls, slow data speeds, and other issues.
  2. Obstructions: Buildings, trees, hills, and other obstructions can block or weaken cell signals, even if you are close to a cell tower. This can result in poor call quality, slow data speeds, and other issues.
  3. Interference: Other devices that use radio frequencies, such as Wi-Fi routers and baby monitors, can interfere with cell signals and cause disruptions to cell service.
  4. Network congestion: If there are too many people using the same cell tower at the same time, this can cause network congestion and slow down data speeds, even if you have a strong signal. If you’ve been to a Penn State football game you’ve likely experienced this! On the days leading up to kickoff, the cell service in State College works just fine! Game day? It’s likely hard to make a call or send a text message.

Overall, while more signal bars can indicate better cell service, it’s important to remember that this is not always the case.

Deleted Files are Gone Forever

When you delete a file on your computer, it may seem like the file is gone forever, but in reality, it’s still there. When you delete a file, your computer only removes the reference to that file from the file system table, which is like a map of where all the files on your computer are located. The actual data of the file remains intact on the hard drive until it is overwritten by new data.

This means that if someone wanted to recover a deleted file, they could use special software to scan the hard drive for traces of the file and piece together the data that was not yet overwritten.

There are several ways to securely delete files, including using special software designed for this purpose or simply overwriting the file multiple times with random data. By doing so, you can ensure that the deleted files are truly gone and cannot be recovered.

Cell Phones Can’t Get Malware

Most people believe that cell phones cannot get malware because they think that mobile devices are inherently more secure than computers. The truth is cell phones and other mobile devices can be just as vulnerable to malware as computers.

In fact, many types of malware are specifically designed to target mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. Malware can be spread through malicious apps, infected email attachments, text messages, and even through the phone’s web browser.

It’s important for users to take steps to protect their mobile devices from malware, such as using reputable antivirus software, avoiding suspicious downloads and links, and being cautious when downloading apps or granting app permissions.

Scanning Potential Spam Emails is Safe

Scanning a spam email can still be dangerous even if you don’t click on a link because some types of malware can be triggered simply by opening or previewing an email. This is known as a “drive-by download” attack, where malware is automatically downloaded onto your computer or device without your knowledge or consent.

While most email clients and antivirus software are designed to prevent drive-by downloads and other types of malware attacks, some types of malware are designed to evade detection and can still infect your system.

Another form of spam email that can be dangerous even without any interaction on your part is an “email bomb.” An “email bomb” is a type of cyber attack where an attacker sends a large number of emails or attachments to a targeted individual or organization,with the goal of overwhelming their email system and causing it to crash or become unresponsive.

Bottom line: even if you don’t interact with a spam email, it could still cause damage to your computer or even your entire organization.

Tech Truths from Everound

At Everound our team of IT professionals stays up to date on the latest tech truths – and tech myths – so our clients don’t have to. If you own a business and aren’t sure what to believe when it comes to your information technology, give us a call or reach out online with any questions – we are here to help!

Some tech myths can be harmful to an organization and it’s our goal to help business owners protect their companies with the right IT infrastructure and processes. Let us focus on your IT so you can focus on your business.

IT Tips to Help Your Small Business Run Smoothly

As a small business owner, you likely wear a lot of hats – owner, human resources leader, marketing guru, and even IT specialist. Navigating all of these roles can be overwhelming, especially in the world of technology. That’s where we can help!

With so much to think about – from protecting customer data to choosing the right software and hardware – it’s no wonder that many owners feel a bit confused and frustrated with IT. Whether you are a solo entrepreneur or a small business with a brick-and-mortar location, having a solid IT plan in place can help you save money, boost productivity, and protect yourself from cyber threats.

Our team has worked with countless small businesses and understands their unique needs. Here are the top IT tips to help you navigate the world of information technology as a small business owner.

Take Advantage of Cloud Storage

One of the most significant innovations in technology is cloud storage. Cloud-based storage enables business owners and their teams to access business data anytime, anywhere, from any device with an internet connection. No more worrying about losing your data if your device crashes or is stolen.

Cloud storage helps small businesses streamline their operations, increase efficiency, and scale their business seamlessly. Cloud storage services like Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive can be great solutions for a small business to securely save, share, and sync its data.

Make Cybersecurity a Priority

Cyber attacks are no longer a matter of if but when. Small businesses are especially vulnerable to attacks because they typically don’t have a robust IT infrastructure or cybersecurity program in place. The consequences of a data breach can be devastating, ranging from critical data loss, reputational damage, regulatory fines, and even business closure.

To protect your business, invest in cybersecurity measures such as network security, strong passwords, multi-factor authentication (MFA), endpoint security solutions, and cybersecurity training for your employees. A cybersecurity breach can cost you more than money, so make sure you prioritize cybersecurity in your IT strategy.

Implement a Backup and Disaster Recovery Plan

One of the most critical components of an IT program is backup and disaster recovery, especially for a small business. What would happen if your company data and operations were suddenly compromised? You need a plan in place to address the unexpected!

Backups and disaster recovery, while related, are not the same thing. Most small businesses have a backup plan in place. A backup is a copy of your essential business data kept safely elsewhere, in case the original data is lost due to hardware failure, deletion, or cyber-attacks. Disaster recovery, on the other hand, is a comprehensive approach to recovering data after a cyber or IT emergency. Having a disaster recovery plan can help mitigate risks and improve business continuity.

Go Mobile

It’s no surprise that mobile work has exploded in the last several years, and so has the technology to support that mobile workforce. Mobile connectivity has revolutionized the way businesses operate. Tools such as VOIP phone systems, Google Workspace, and Microsoft Teams allow team members to stay connected from anywhere in the world.

With mobile technology, you can work from home, on the road, or anywhere else, without compromising productivity. Investing in mobile connectivity can also help you attract and retain top talent, as it enables more flexible work arrangements.

Outsource IT

Tired of worrying about your IT needs? Delegate it to a Managed Service Provider (MSP). Outsourcing your IT is a smart move for small businesses that don’t have a dedicated in-house IT team. Think of an MSP as a “stand-in” for CTOs and IT departments. They have the expertise and training to help businesses put a solid IT infrastructure in place, manage IT systems, and offer technical support.

Managed Service Providers are often more affordable than business owners think. Outsourcing IT to an MSP can save you money in the long run, as it eliminates the need to hire dedicated IT staff and buy expensive hardware and software. MSPs are also more scalable, meaning they can adapt to your changing business needs faster and more efficiently.

Managed IT Services for Small Businesses from Everound

At Everound, we understand the challenges a small business owner faces when it comes to IT. When we meet with a small business owner, oftentimes they just don’t know where to start to get their IT infrastructure in place or what types of steps to take to ensure their business is protected from an IT standpoint.

If you own a small business and need some help getting on the right path with your IT needs, reach out to us today either online or by giving us a call. We can listen to your needs and recommend an IT strategy that fits your budget. We can help you get set up or help you with ongoing IT support services through our managed IT services packages. Let us focus on your IT so you can focus on your business.

Don’t Be Fooled by an Evil Twin Attack

As technology continues to advance, so do the methods that hackers use to steal personal information. One of these methods is an evil twin attack, which involves a hacker creating a fake hotspot that mimics a legitimate network in order to steal sensitive data from unsuspecting users.

This type of malicious cybercrime targets wireless networks and unsuspecting users connected to it without their knowledge. Evil twin attacks are a form of a “man-in-the-middle” (MITM) attack where a cybercriminal secretly intercepts and modifies the communication between two trusted parties. This is accomplished by positioning themselves between the two parties and listening in on their conversation.

Evil twin attacks are most common in public settings such as coffee shops, airports, and parks – any place where users rely on public Wi-Fi to stay connected. Let’s explore how evil twin attacks work, how to detect an evil twin Wi-Fi connection, and how to protect yourself from one.

How Do Evil Twin Attacks Work?

An evil twin attack is a type of wireless attack where a hacker creates a fake wireless access point (WAP), or Wi-Fi access point, which looks similar to a legitimate one in order to steal sensitive information, such as login credentials, credit card details, bank account information, or personal data.

Evil twins are surprisingly easy to set up, which makes them a huge risk for people using public Wi-Fi. Hackers set up an evil twin through a process that involves a few steps:

  • Scouting: The hacker will first scout the targeted area to find a wireless network that they can imitate. They may use tools like Wi-Fi Pineapple, which are specifically designed for wireless penetration testing.
  • Creating a fake WAP: Once a valid target has been identified, the hacker will create a fake WAP with a similar name and network characteristics to the original one. This is done using special software that allows the attacker to spoof the SSID and MAC address of the network.
  • Broadcasting: After the creation of the fake WAP, the hacker will broadcast it with a strong signal to ensure that it is detected by all devices within range.
  • Luring: The attacker then lures unsuspecting users to connect to the fake WAP by naming it something similar to the legitimate network, like “Free Wi-Fi.” The hacker may also offer higher bandwidth or any other attractive offer in the name of free or faster internet.
  • Collecting: Once a victim connects to the fake WAP, the hacker can collect the user’s sensitive information, such as login credentials, credit card numbers, or browsing history. The hacker can also install malware on the user’s device to gain access to other valuable data.

Evil twin attacks can be difficult to detect because the fake WAP will often have the same name and look very similar to the legitimate one. Therefore, it is important to verify the legitimacy of a WAP before connecting to it, specifically when using public Wi-Fi.

How to Detect Evil Twin Wi-Fi Connections

To ensure the security of your personal information and devices, it is important to be aware of malicious “evil twins.” One way to detect evil twin Wi-Fi connections is to carefully examine the network name. Evil twins often use a similar name to that of a legitimate access point but with slight variations or misspellings. For example, instead of “StarbucksWiFi,” an evil twin may be named “StarbuckssWiFi” or “StarbucksFreeWiFi.” Always double-check the spelling and make sure it matches the official network name.

Another way to detect a fake captive portal is to look for security alerts on your device. Many modern devices will automatically detect and alert you to potential security risks when connecting to Wi-Fi networks. Such alerts may say that the network is unsecured, or that the network name has recently changed or is not recognized. Any such alerts should be taken seriously, and the network should not be connected to.

It is also important to be wary of open or unsecured networks that require no password to connect. These networks are often targeted by hackers looking to set up an evil twin network.

How to Prevent Evil Twin Attacks

Fortunately, there are several ways to protect yourself from an evil twin attack. One of the most important ways is to use a virtual private network (VPN) whenever you’re connecting to a Wi-Fi network that you’re not familiar with. A VPN creates a secure, encrypted connection between your device and the internet, making it much more difficult for hackers to intercept your data.

Another important step is to make sure that you’re always using websites that employ HTTPS, which stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure. This means that the website has an SSL certificate, which encrypts the data that is being sent between your device and the website’s servers. So, even if a hacker is able to intercept your data, they won’t be able to read it.

In addition, it’s a good idea to avoid connecting to public Wi-Fi networks altogether if possible. Instead, consider using a personal hotspot to connect to the internet when you’re out and about. A personal hotspot creates a network that’s only accessible to your devices, which makes it much harder for hackers to intercept your data.

Finally, it’s a good idea to ensure that all of your online accounts are secured with two-factor authentication (2FA). This means that in addition to entering a password, you’ll also be asked to provide a second form of verification, such as a code sent to your phone. This makes it much harder for hackers to gain access to your accounts, even if they’ve managed to steal your passwords.

Cybersecurity Solutions from Everound

Everound is a managed IT services company specializing in cybersecurity servicesIT consultingnetwork administrationhelp desk support, and other IT services. Our team of professionals has worked with large, enterprise organizations as well as small startup businesses to help them plan for and prepare for a cybersecurity threat.

One of the most important parts of a robust cybersecurity program is educating teams on how to stay alert of cybercrime including evil twin attacks. We can help you develop a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy to keep your team – and your business – safe from cyber threats. We offer a free cybersecurity assessment that will help you understand where you may be vulnerable and can help you develop a plan to reduce your risk of a cyber threat. Contact us today for a free consultation and let us focus on your IT so you can focus on your business.

Why Outsource Cybersecurity?

As a business owner, managing your organization’s cybersecurity can be a daunting task. With the rapidly evolving digital world and its associated threats, it becomes increasingly challenging to keep up with the latest developments in cybersecurity and ensure that your data remains safe.

That’s why outsourcing cybersecurity is becoming a popular option for organizations big and small — outsourcing allows you access to top-notch security technology without needing in-depth knowledge of cybersecurity best practices or a large budget.

Let’s explore some of the key benefits that come from outsourcing your company’s cyber security needs so you can decide if it’s the right choice for you.

Advantages of Outsourcing Cybersecurity

For business owners, cybersecurity is an essential requirement in the age of digital information storage. Protecting your customer, employee, and company data from cyber threats and malicious attacks needs to be a top priority if you want your business to remain secure. However, many businesses don’t have the resources or personnel available to properly implement and maintain effective cybersecurity protocols – which is why outsourcing can be so beneficial.

Here are the top reasons to outsource your cyber security services:

Access to Expertise

The ever-evolving cybersecurity industry requires a commitment to learning and continuous training, which can be difficult for many organizations. Managed IT services providers maintain a deep understanding of the ever-evolving cybersecurity landscape, which is essential to protect businesses from highly sophisticated cyber criminals.

These providers frequently update security protocols, deploy the latest security technologies, and employ highly trained professionals who are specialized in cybersecurity. Such a level of expertise and cutting-edge resources might be challenging to have within an in-house IT department due to budget constraints and limited manpower.

Cost Savings

When you outsource your cybersecurity to a managed IT services provider, that provider spreads the cost of its own employees and the costs of tools and hardware across multiple customers, meaning there is a reduced overall expense for the same level of service.

There is also clear cost savings when you compare the cost of an in-house cybersecurity team to the cost of outsourcing. The salaries, benefits, and ancillary costs of an in-house team quickly add up and will more than likely be much greater than the cost of outsourcing.

One other often overlooked area of cost savings is the price of NOT implementing a cybersecurity plan. While the costs of a cyber attack vary widely for a business – anywhere from $120,000 to $1.24 million, the financial impact is significant. Can your business absorb the cost of a data breach?

Bottom line? Outsourcing has a direct positive benefit to a business’s financial health in more ways than one.

Timely Support

Outsourcing cybersecurity to a managed IT services provider offers businesses an invaluable advantage over in-house teams – round-the-clock monitoring and support. One of the primary reasons organizations choose to outsource is the 24/7 availability of resources, as cybersecurity threats and attacks can occur at any time, requiring immediate attention. Whether it’s a holiday or a weekend, managed IT services provide dedicated teams who continuously monitor clients’ networks and systems, ensuring that cyber threats are detected and prevented before causing any significant damage.

Early Warnings

In an era where cybercrimes are increasing both in complexity and frequency, having an outsourced cybersecurity team that can provide an early warning is an indispensable asset for businesses operating in the digital world.

Outsourced cybersecurity teams possess the expertise and resources to constantly monitor the rapidly evolving threat landscape in the digital world. Through a combination of cutting-edge technologies, advanced analytics, threat intelligence, and years of experience, they can identify emerging cyber threats and vulnerabilities on a global scale.

An early warning of a cyber attack not only helps in preventing the attack itself but also significantly reduces the risk of catastrophic data and financial loss. By keeping a vigilant eye on the constantly shifting threat landscape, outsourced cybersecurity teams empower businesses to take proactive measures and close any identified security gaps before they can be exploited.

This approach minimizes the downtime and financial impacts associated with data breaches or other cyber attacks, which can cost businesses millions of dollars in losses, regulatory fines, and reputational damages.

Reduce Stress on Internal Teams

Even if an organization has an in-house IT team, outsourcing the cybersecurity function can be of benefit. By outsourcing cybersecurity to a dedicated team of experts, the in-house IT team can significantly reduce their workload and focus on crucial aspects such as network configuration and infrastructure support.

With the increased sophistication of cyber threats and the constant evolution of attack vectors, a specialized cybersecurity team possesses the necessary skills and knowledge to detect, prevent, and mitigate potential breaches. This not only alleviates the burden of keeping up with the ever-changing landscape of cyber threats but also grants organizations access to state-of-the-art technologies and innovative practices that are tailored to their specific needs.

Proactive Protection

Outsourcing cybersecurity provides companies with a proactive rather than reactive approach to guarding their digital assets against cyber threats in many of the ways we’ve outlined already – expertise, access to resources, continuous monitoring, timely updates, cost savings, and the ability to draw from previous experiences. Companies that adopt a proactive approach are better positioned to safeguard their digital assets and reduce the risk of cyber threats.

What to Look for in a Cybersecurity Team

In today’s digital era, the significance of a robust cybersecurity team cannot be overstated. As cyber threats grow more sophisticated and commonplace, organizations across all industries and sizes must invest in a capable, well-equipped cybersecurity team to protect their sensitive data, intellectual property, and the privacy of their clients.

The ideal cybersecurity team should possess a diverse range of skill sets, be mindful of continuously evolving techniques, and share a commitment to staying ahead of malicious cyber actors. If you’re looking to outsource your cybersecurity needs, here are several areas to carefully consider when putting together your cybersecurity team:

  • Experience and Expertise – Make sure the company has experience with cybersecurity, as well as experts who understand the threats and solutions available.
  • Proactive Approach – Look for a company that takes a proactive approach to cybersecurity, such as monitoring systems, examining vulnerabilities, and responding quickly to any potential issues.
  • Continuous Monitoring and Reporting – A good cybersecurity company should provide monitoring and reporting of all activity on your network, including all changes made to your systems.
  • Accessibility – It’s important that you are able to easily contact your cybersecurity provider if any issues arise.
  • Security Audits – Look for a company that offers regular security audits to ensure your systems remain secure over time.
  • Comprehensive Solutions – Make sure the cybersecurity provider you choose offers comprehensive solutions that address both external threats and internal security weaknesses.

Cybersecurity Solutions from Everound

A secure cyber environment is crucial to the success of any business. Don’t risk leaving your organization vulnerable – team up with Everound and benefit from our decades of experience in cybersecurity best practices.

Contact us today for a free cybersecurity assessment. We will take a deep dive into your current cybersecurity infrastructure and let you know where you are most vulnerable and what we can do to help. Let us focus on your IT so you can focus on your business.

Know the IT Risks of Working Remote

The push towards remote work exploded over the last three years and has opened up many benefits for both employees and employers. Employees enjoy more freedom to get their jobs done almost anywhere and employers can reduce their overhead expenses and hire talent from across the country or globe.

Remote work, however, does come with some risks, especially when it comes to IT. Workers who hit the local coffee shop for an hour or two increase their cybersecurity risk when connecting to public Wi-Fi. Working in a public place also opens up employees to other kinds of vulnerabilities including traditional theft.

What are the security risks when working in a public place? And how can business owners reduce the risk for a remote workforce? Let’s take a look.

Common IT Risks When Working Remote

When working anywhere other than the office, it’s safe to assume there are increased risks to employees’ information technology security. Employees working remotely can directly expose work computers and networks to cybercrime such as hacking and phishing.

What threats and IT risks do employees and employers face? Here are the most common IT risks when working in a public place:

Unsecured Networks

When working at a coffee shop, library, or another public place, it’s tempting to open your laptop and connect to the free Wi-Fi offered. Connecting to a public network though is one of the easiest ways to fall victim to a cyberattack.

Nearly 25% of all public Wi-Fi hotspots do not have encryption or protection, meaning anyone near the access point has an easy way “in” to the network and can steal data. The risk isn’t only for laptops – research shows that 40% of mobile devices used for work are exposed to a cyber attack within the first four months of use.

Evil Twin Attacks

An evil twin is a fraudulent or fake public Wi-Fi set up by a cybercriminal. Essentially, the cybercriminal capitalizes and preys on remote workers and sets up a Wi-Fi hotspot that looks legitimate but is actually bait to steal sensitive information from users. When users connect to the “evil twin,” all of the sensitive data shared on the network passes through a server controlled by the attacker.

Prying Eyes

Public spaces are just that – public – and don’t offer the same privacy as a home office. When working in a public space, you are at risk for prying eyes, or “shoulder surfers,” who can steal data displayed on a laptop screen. Skilled shoulder surfers can steal passwords, PINs, among other kinds of information directly off of a laptop screen.

Traditional Theft

Most workers get up and stretch their legs or get a cup of coffee several times a day. When workers do this in a public place – even for just a few seconds – criminals can swipe work laptops and personal devices. While uncommon, this is a risk employers should consider when utilizing a remote workforce.

These are a few of the many cybersecurity risks when working in a public place. With some planning and intention, there are ways to minimize security risks for a remote workforce.

How to Reduce Security Risks

Working in a public place can present cybersecurity risks if proper preventative steps are ignored. To minimize IT security risks when working in public, it is important to never leave devices unattended and to disable any devices that must remain out of sight or not in use when not attended.

Here are some best practices to help reduce the risks of working in a public place:

  • Provide team members with separate work computers: When you provide computers and mobile devices to your team, your IT professionals can configure settings to minimize cyber risk. Furthermore, work computers can be monitored remotely to stay ahead of any risks such as phising and other social engineering cyber attacks.
  • Use personal hotspot device: Refrain from connecting to public networks or Wi-Fi as data can be exposed on these unsecured networks. Instead, connect to a personal hotspot device. Personal hotspot devices are a better alternative to public Wi-Fi and are an affordable piece of hardware that gives peace of mind employees are on a safe network.
  • Use a VPN: If team members must use public Wi-Fi, having a virtual private network, or VPN, is critical for online security and safety. A VPN creates a secure connection between the computer and the computer network and protects online privacy. VPNs encrypt internet traffic and make it difficult for hackers to track online activities and steal data.
  • Use strong passwords: While it may be repetitive to hear, the first line of defense against cybercrime is a strong password. Weak passwords, or using the same password across multiple sites and devices, make employees easy targets. Use passwords that are at least 12 characters, including symbols and numbers, and are unique to each site or device. Password managers can make this process easier for team members.
  • Provide team members with laptop cable locks: Laptop cables work the exact same way as bike locks – the cable connects to the laptop and then around a stationary object such as a table leg. The locks can only be unlocked with either a key or a code.
  • Employ a comprehensive cybersecurity program: If you’re employing a remote workforce, it’s absolutely imperative to have a comprehensive cybersecurity program in place that addresses phishing scams, malware, viruses, and other cyber threats. Your IT team should develop and implement a plan that includes endpoint protection, network security, email security, and dark web monitoring.

Following these tips and best practices can help reduce IT security risks for your team members when working in a public place. Unsure where to start or how to implement these solutions? Contact us today for a free cybersecurity audit.

Remote Workforce Cybersecurity Solutions from Everound

As a managed IT services provider, Everound understands the challenges business face with cybersecurity. Whether you have an entirely remote workforce, an “in-person” team, or a blend of the two, we can help you develop a cybersecurity plan to protect your team members both in the office and when they are working in a public place.

Cyber attacks can paralyze a business – don’t wait until AFTER an attack to improve your cybersecurity. Contact us today for a free review of your current cybersecurity infrastructure and a recommended path forward to protect your company from a cyber attack.

Spotty Wi-Fi at the Office?

We’ve all experienced the frustration of having our Wi-Fi drop at work in the middle of an important task. It’s an aggravation that can quickly derail our workflow and cause us to lose momentum. But what is the cause of Wi-Fi drops at work, and how can they be prevented? Let’s take a look at symptoms of Wi-Fi issues, some of the most common reasons why Wi-Fi drops out at work and what you can do to fix the problem.  

Symptoms of Wi-Fi Issues

The most common symptom of a Wi-Fi issue is that users are unable to connect or stay connected to the Internet. Other signs may include slow speeds, connection problems across multiple devices, or constantly having to reconnect to the network after a period of time. These issues can affect both employee productivity and customer satisfaction.  

Causes of Wi-Fi Issues

One of the more common causes of Wi-Fi connectivity issues is interference. In a residential setting, one wireless router may be enough to keep all devices and users connected to the Internet on a home network without issues. The radio waves used by Wi-Fi have no problem passing through the materials used to build a home. In an office setting, however, radio waves have a much tougher time passing through concrete walls and covering a larger space. In this case, adding additional wireless access points can be beneficial.  

Other common causes of Wi-Fi issues include:  

Outdated Hardware

If you’re using antiquated equipment such as routers from 10 years ago or adapters from five years ago, chances are that those devices won’t be able to keep up with today’s technology. Outdated hardware can lead to frequent disconnects due to their limited bandwidth capabilities and lack of compatibility with newer software updates.  

Poor Network Configuration

Another common reason why Wi-Fi drops at work is due to improper network configuration by inexperienced technicians or IT staff members who may not have enough experience configuring complex networks. Poorly configured networks can lead to poor signal strength throughout the office which causes frequent disconnects or slow speeds when connecting to the internet. To fix this issue, make sure that all of your network settings are configured correctly by a qualified technician or IT professional who has experience configuring complex networks.   

Network Bottleneck

Your Wi-Fi network at home may only have a few devices connected – perhaps one or two computers, a gaming system or two, and your smartphones. In an office setting, though, the number of connections can reach hundreds of different devices.  

When you have too many devices connected to your work Wi-Fi network, it can create a bottleneck. Think of your Wi-Fi network as a highway – each highway “lane” carries devices to an internet connection. When there are too many devices and not enough “lanes,” the traffic can cause the internet speed to slow down or works, the Wi-Fi connections can drop completely.  


Even if you have a strong cybersecurity program in place, sometimes malware can infiltrate your network. Some types of malware “hide” in the background and use your network resources for crypto mining or exfiltrating data. These types of malware don’t necessarily hold you hostage or cause damage, but rather just hog your network and slow down or cause interruptions issues with your Wi-Fi. 

These are just a few of the potential issues that can be causing your internet connection to be spotty. If you’re experiencing these issues at work, what can you do to troubleshoot and fix the problem?  

Troubleshooting Your Wi-Fi Issues

Whether you’re experiencing slow speeds, connection problems across multiple devices, or constant dropouts on your business’s Wi-Fi network, understanding what causes these issues and how to troubleshoot them can help keep your employees productive and customers satisfied with their experience at your business.  

Troubleshooting Wi-Fi connectivity issues can feel like trying to solve a puzzle. Each component of your network has to fit together in a specific way. There are several potential fixes to try to make your network run smoothly for your team. 

If you have internet issues, here are a few ways to troubleshoot and fix the problem: 

  1. Upgrade equipment: Still using a network adaptor or router from 5 years ago? 10 years ago? Wireless equipment has improved dramatically over the last few years, so it may be time to upgrade your equipment. There are several business-class hardware options on the market that include monitoring and management tools to help visualize your network traffic. Some equipment can even allow you to see radio interference so adjustments can be made. 
  2. Install Additional Access Points: This is one of the easiest ways to increase the Wi-Fi connectivity at your office, especially if your equipment is modern and up to date. Thinking about the highway analogy, adding additional access points increases the number of “lanes” on your network highway. The more lanes you have, the easier it is for the team to access your network from more places. 
  3. Use Wired Connections: Wherever possible, use wired connections for internet access. When you use an Ethernet cable to connect devices to your network, it frees up the capacity of the network for devices that can only connect via the internet. For example, large printers in a shared space could be connected to the Internet by Ethernet rather than through the Internet.  
  4. Ask Professionals for Help: If you’re encountering frequent Wi-Fi issues at work, it may be in your best interests to work with a professional IT team to fix the problem. Managed IT Services providers can take a look at your entire IT infrastructure and make recommendations on how to approach the issue in a holistic way. 

Wi-Fi Services from Everound

Wi-Fi dropouts at work can be one of the most frustrating experiences for both employees and employers alike. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent these drops from occurring in the first place by taking steps such as making sure all wireless devices use different frequencies than your router, updating outdated hardware regularly, and ensuring that all network settings are configured correctly by a qualified technician or IT professional. Taking these preventive measures will help ensure that you don’t have any more trouble with Wi-Fi dropouts at work in the future! 

If you’re struggling with your Wi-Fi performance at work and aren’t sure how to fix the issue, reach out to the team at Everound for help. Our experienced team of IT technicians and professionals can diagnose and fix issues. Contact us today to get the conversation started! 

Business Identity Theft is on the Rise

Everyone knows how important it is to protect your personal information from identity theft. When personal data like social security numbers, bank account information, and other sensitive information fall into the wrong hands, the results can be disastrous. Many people take the proper precautions to protect their personal identity. But are you taking the same precautions to protect yourself from business identity theft?

According to a report by the National Cybersecurity Society, the IRS logged 10,000 business identity theft cases in the first half of 2017, more than double all claims in 2016. Although 10,000 cases may not seem like a large number, identity thieves caused $137 million in damages.

How can you protect your business from identity theft? Let’s take a look at why businesses are targeted, the different types of business identity theft, and some tips to protect your business.

Why Small Businesses are Targeted for Identity Theft

Businesses are easy targets for identity theft for several reasons, most notably because there is a wealth of information available rather easily to thieves. Many businesses are required to publish sensitive company details and business records like financial statements, employer identification numbers (EIN), or sales tax numbers. This readily available data makes it easy for a thief to steal a business’s identity.

Higher Payout

Identity thieves try to gain access to business data with one goal in mind – financial gain. Businesses have larger bank accounts, assets, and credit limits than individual consumers. Once thieves have access to this information, they can start to steal money while staying below the radar.

Less Chance of Being Caught

Businesses tend to utilize credit cards at a higher rate than personal consumers. This increased activity can make it harder to spot a fraudulent transaction. For example, if there is a $1,000+ charge on your personal credit card, chances are your bank will flag the transaction. That same charge on a business account may go unnoticed.

Less Security

Unfortunately, small businesses may not have the same level of cybersecurity in place than larger businesses and corporations. Identity thieves take advantage of this security gap to target small businesses.

Has your company been a victim of identity theft? You can reduce your risk by implementing cybersecurity best practices at your company. A managed IT services provider like Everound can help you protect your business identity.

Four Types of Business Identity Theft

Business identity theft can take different forms and can be more complex than personal identity theft. The National Cybersecurity Society had identified four main types of business identity theft:

  1. Financial Fraud: Financial fraud occurs when a thief steals credit card information, opens a new line of credit, obtains a loan, or uses a stolen EIN, among others.
  2. Tax Fraud: This type of identity theft occurs when a thief steals business data and files a fraudulent tax return to receive a tax refund from the federal or state government.
  3. Website Defacement: This type of business identity theft is specific to companies that collect customer data on their website. In this scenario, a cybercriminal redirects traffic from a business’s website to a fake site in an attempt to steal customer data.
  4. Trademark Ransom: Trademark ransom is when an identity thief registers the name or logo of an existing business and then demands a ransom to release them from the trademark.

Tips to Protect Business Identity

Even though business identity theft is on the rise, the good news is there are steps a business owner can take to reduce their risk. Whether you own a small business with a few employees or a large corporation with multiple locations, it’s good practice to regularly check your credit with a credit reporting agency or even invest in identity theft protection.
Here are some other tips to help protect your business from identity theft:

  • Use – and Protect – an EIN: If your small business operates as a sole proprietorship, you may be using your Social Security Number (SSN) for tax purposes. This puts you as the owner at risk. Apply for an EIN number through the IRS. This will help you keep business and personal finances separate. If you are already using an EIN, treat your EIN just like you do your SSN. Keep it safe and only disclose it when necessary.
  • Secure Both Digital and Hard File Copy Files: Your business files contain sensitive information – do you want that to end up in the hands of thieves? Keep sensitive documents in locked file cabinets and for digital files, make sure your network is safe from cybercrime.
  • Train Team Members: The number one threat to your organization’s cybersecurity is your team. Educate your employees on the risks of phishing and how to spot a phishing attempt.
  • Secure Website: If you do any business through your website, be sure it is secure. Back up the site regularly, scan it for malware and viruses, protect it with a firewall, and invest in an SSL certificate.
  • Stay on Top of Security Updates: It’s a big risk to ignore computer system updates. Software companies often issue updates to address cyber threats. Your IT department or your managed IT services provider should be doing this regularly.

Cybersecurity Services from Everound

Unsure if your business is at risk for identity theft? Having a cybersecurity partner on your team can help alleviate your concern and also reduce your chances of identity theft. At Everound, we work with businesses of all sizes to protect them from cybercrime.

Our team has decades of experience in cybersecurity best practices for businesses. Reach out today to start the process with a free cybersecurity assessment. Our assessment will identify any areas of vulnerability for identity theft as well as areas of strength. Let us focus on your IT so you can focus on your business.

For business owners, finding the right IT partner can be overwhelming. With so many companies offering similar services, how do you know which one is right for you? Which managed services provider (MSP) can you trust with your IT infrastructure and needs?

Whether you have an in-house IT team who needs additional support or are looking for an IT MSP to take on all of your information technology needs, it’s important to ask the right questions to determine which partner is the best fit for your company.

Before entering into a contract or agreement with a managed IT services provider, get to know their capabilities and experience through a thorough interview process. What important questions should you ask? Focus on areas like company experience, pricing and contracts, data management, and comanaged services.

Here are questions to ask your managed IT services provider to get you started.

Company Experience

First and foremost, you will want to make sure the company you select to be your IT partner has the experience and background to provide you with the best experience and service. Sample questions to ask include:

  • What are the team qualifications? What skills and abilities does your technical staff carry? If you are outsourcing some or all of your IT needs, it’s critical you work with a team that has the technical expertise of a CTO AND the hands-on skills of a tech support team. What experience do they have in their field? How long have they worked in IT? What industry credentials or certifications do they have?
  • Can I contact your existing clients for references? Does the managed IT services provider readily offer references and testimonials? If not, why? Current client testimonials and references can be very helpful during the decision process. Another way to check references is to look at their Google reviews.
  • Do you have specific experience in our industry? If you are in an industry that has unique IT needs, the answer to this question may be key in whether or not you move forward with the MSP.
  • Is there any reason to NOT hire your company? This question tends to surprise many companies. Ask them reasons why they may not be the best partner. What areas do they need to improve? What potential problems or issues could you encounter if you hire them?

Pricing and Contracts

If you are considering working with a managed IT services provider, you likely have a budget you need to stay within. While an MSP may have a tiered pricing structure that fits into your budget, there are other pricing and contract questions you should ask including:

  • Do you charge a flat fee? Or do you charge by the hour or help desk ticket? The answers to these questions will vary widely between MSPs. Some companies charge a flat fee for ongoing services while others will charge by the hour or even by the number of help desk tickets. If the company works by the hour or by issue, this can be more expensive in the long run than charging a flat fee.
  • Do you have a service level agreement? A service level agreement (SLA) defines the scope of work and the level of service you can expect in the relationship. Essentially, an SLA is a commitment by the provider to you as their client. Professional, reputable companies will offer a service level agreement.
  • Is there an onboarding fee? Some MSPs will hide this extra fee in their contract and clients may not notice it until they get their first invoice. While onboarding fees are not necessarily unheard of, an MSP should be upfront and transparent if this is their business model. If they DO charge a fee, ask what is covered for onboarding – meetings? Discovery time? Be sure you understand what is and isn’t covered.
  • Is there an annual contract? If so, is there an opt-out clause? Many managed IT services companies require a one-year contract. What happens if you aren’t happy with their service after 3 months? Six months? Ask what options there are if you are not satisfied with their service. Do they offer contract flexibility including monthly options?
  • Do you offer a free IT assessment before signing a contract? If you are interviewing potential IT partners, how do you know what you need? Companies that want to work with you will offer an assessment BEFORE a contract so you understand what services may or may not be needed. Don’t be afraid to ask for this service, too.

Data Management

One of the most important aspects of information technology is data management, especially for companies that manage sensitive internal data and external client or customer information. How will the MSP protect that data and how is it managed? Here are a few key questions to ask your potential MSP:

  • How do you protect my data? Cybersecurity is critical in data management. Ask the MSP what policies and procedures they have in place to keep prying eyes off of your company information.
  • How are backups and disaster recovery handled? Let’s face it – sometimes even with the best IT teams in place, systems can crash. How does an MSP handle disaster recovery? Can they remedy service issues remotely? What is the average downtime for their clients after an issue?

Comanaged Services

Companies who already have an internal IT department may want to partner with an MSP for comanaged services. Comanaged service is a framework where some IT tasks are delegated to the MSP while others are handled internally.

  • Do you offer comanaged services? What does that relationship look like? Some MSPs adopt an “all or nothing” approach when working with their clients. In reality, this isn’t always necessary. For companies that have a CTO, they may only need ongoing cybersecurity or help desk services. For other companies that have an internal tech support role on staff, they may need IT consulting and strategic planning services. Discuss your managed service needs with the provider to have a full understanding of how a comanaged relationship works.

Managed IT Services from Everound

At Everound, we work with our clients to customize a partnership that not only meets their specific IT needs but does so in a way that fits into their budget. We provide a service level agreement for our clients that details what we will do to help them realize IT operational efficiency.

Here are other ways we are set apart from other managed IT services providers:

  • Many of our current clients came to us after their existing MSP overpromised and underdelivered. We do not walk away from a challenge and if your current IT company is telling you “no,” we can find a way to say “yes.”
  • We do not require an annual contract, just a 30-day heads-up that we weren’t a great fit. And we do not charge a fee if our relationship ends.
  • If we aren’t the right partner for you, we will help you find a managed IT services provider to replace us! Our goal is to provide the service our clients need and deserve and if we fall short we will work hard to find you another company to work with you.

Curious about our approach to managed IT services? Reach out today to start a discussion. Let us focus on your IT so you can focus on your business.

Almost daily we learn about cybersecurity threats and data breaches that are affecting businesses across the country and around the globe. The pace and costs of these incidents aren’t slowing down either. In fact, it’s projected that by 2025 the costs related to cybercrime will reach $10.5 trillion.

Most business owners acknowledge the importance of cybersecurity to protect their business assets. The complexities of cybersecurity best practices, though, can leave a business owner feeling confused or overwhelmed and prone to making a costly mistake.

What are the most common cybersecurity mistakes that make a business vulnerable to attack? Let’s take a look at missteps that can make a business a target for cybercrime.

Mistake #1: Not Having a Plan in Place

By far, the biggest mistake that can hurt a company is not having a plan in place in case of a cyber threat. Companies without a formalized cybersecurity plan in place are the most prone to a cyber attack. While creating a response plan takes time and effort, the trade-off for NOT having one in place is immense. A lack of preparation can have devasting financial consequences on a business, not to mention severe damage to customers’ trust and loyalty.

It’s critical for all organizations to prepare and plan for attacks before they happen beginning with an incident response plan. An incident response plan details the step-by-step process for responding to a cyber event. An incident response plan helps to minimize downtime, maintain public trust, and in many industries such as healthcare and law, remain in compliance with governing organizations.

As the saying goes, prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

Mistake #2: Not Staying Up to Date

You’ve likely done it once or twice – ignored the annoying notification that a software update is available for your computer. It’s natural to delay a notification while you are in the midst of working on a project, but regular software updates are important to help keep your business secure by:

  • Fixing security weaknesses
  • Addressing known threats
  • Installing computer patches
  • Fixing computer bugs

If you are at an organization with an internal IT department, your IT team should be pushing updates regularly to the entire organization’s IT infrastructure. Are you the IT department AND the business owner? Chances are your team isn’t updating their computers regularly unless you are specifically asking them to do so.

Mistake #3: Not Training Employees

Did you know that one of the biggest threats to your business’s cybersecurity isn’t a hacker or cybercriminals? The biggest threat is actually your employees. Human error accounts for a large percentage of data breaches and other cyber incidents.

When you fail to provide regular training to your team, they may fall victim to phishing emails, ransomware attacks, improperly storing sensitive data, or clicking on an unsafe link. Cybersecurity awareness training isn’t failsafe, however, developing a security posture is about building up layers of defense. Training is one of those layers.


Mistake #4: Not Using Strong Passwords

Humans are predictable – passwords shouldn’t be. Weak passwords are an easy way for outsiders to gain access to your network and data. Considering 61% of data breaches involve login information, a strong password policy is critical to keep data safe. A strong password policy can include:

  • Required two-factor authentication
  • Long passwords with a mix of lower and uppercase letters
  • Avoiding predictable passwords such as, well, password
  • Not allowing recycled passwords
  • One-time access passwords

Overlooking password security is sometimes an overlooked area but can be easily addressed by incorporating a password manager into your IT best practices.

Mistake #5: Skipping Backups

Not backing up data is a critical mistake when it comes to cybersecurity and protecting data. In the event your company is held hostage with ransomware, or if your data is lost or corrupted, a backup can help you restore it.

There are two ways to backup your data: cloud-based and local. Cloud-based backups are stored on servers and local backups are stored on external hard drives or other devices. Business owners should consider using both methods, especially startups and small businesses.

Mistake #6: Thinking “It Won’t Happen to Us”

Own a business and think cybercrime only happens to other companies? The hard truth is most businesses – even small businesses – will be targeted for a cybercrime at some point. Hackers often target small businesses over large ones as their IT infrastructure is more likely to have holes and gaps for them to exploit. If you own a business, it’s not if, but when, you will be targeted.

Cybersecurity Services from Everound

Everound is a managed IT services company specializing in cybersecurity services, IT consulting, network administration, help desk support, and other IT services. Our team of professionals has worked with large, enterprise organizations as well as small startup businesses to help them plan for and prepare for a cybersecurity threat.

We know what it’s like to run a business and make our customers’ cybersecurity needs a priority. We offer a free cybersecurity assessment that will help you understand where you may be vulnerable and can help you develop a plan to reduce your risk for a cyber threat. Contact us today for a free consultation and let us focus on your IT so you can focus on your business.

As a business owner, you likely understand the power of making your budget work as hard as possible and spend money wisely on business operations. This time of year, you may be working on next year’s budget and wondering if there are areas of opportunity to show cost savings. One area where you can reduce costs is your information technology expenses.

Outsourcing IT business functions to a managed services provider (MSP) allows you to cut costs, save time, and even produce the same or a better outcome at a lower cost. There are also indirect benefits to outsourcing your IT including consistency in service. For example, when you use an outsourcing company, there are no sick days or PTO days to worry about – in fact, your managed service provider is always on call for you!

How does outsourcing IT save costs over relying on an in-house team? Let’s take a look at the ways outsourcing IT can alleviate budget constraints while also helping your business realize IT operational efficiency.

Reduced Salary Expenses

Let’s face it – payroll and related costs are the biggest expense for a business. On average, a company spends more than $4,000 to hire and train a new employee. In addition, recruitment and retention costs can add even more expenses to a company’s bottom line.

When you rely on an IT outsourcing company for technical support, cloud services, disaster recovery, and other IT services, you not only save money on these expenses, but you also save money on annual salaries and additional overhead costs including:

  • Medical, dental, and other healthcare benefits
  • Retirement costs such as 401k contributions
  • Quarterly or annual bonuses
  • Hard costs such as office space and furniture, computers, cell phones, and miscellaneous resources

When you work with a managed IT services provider, these costs fall on the MSP’s shoulders and not on your business. Curious if outsourcing is for you? We can help you determine if working with an MSP makes sense for your budget.

No Training Costs

Information technology changes rapidly, especially when it comes to IT concerns like cybersecurity and remote monitoring and management. In-house employees need to be on top of the latest technology developments and risks which can only be achieved by ongoing training and education. This can come with a massive price tag for a business owner.

When you work with a managed services provider, training is included, and you have access to highly trained experts without the costs. Most MSPs spend their own time and money on training for their team members meaning you can put those costs back into your business.

Another ancillary training benefit is for your own employees. As part of some support packages, MSPs offer cybersecurity training, software training, and other IT-related educational services. At Everound, we can work with your company to develop training programs that allow your employees to maximize the power of technology at your business.

Easy Scalability

Another way outsourcing your IT can save your company money is the ability to scale up – or down – quickly and easily. If you have a seasonal business and need more IT help in the summer months, for example, your IT services package can scale down in the winter. When you have an in-house IT team, you are responsible for their salaries and expenses year-round, no matter your current IT needs.

Cash flow down? With an MSP, you can scale back services for the short term to help increase your bottom line. Similarly, if you run a small business, you may not need 40 hours per week of technical support. The good news is your MSP can work with you to scale up or down based on your current financial situation.

Why Choose Everound for your Managed IT Services?

At Everound, we work with our customers to develop an ongoing managed IT services relationship that helps their bottom line. We can create a customized package that meets your IT needs AND reduces your overall information technology costs.

We won’t charge you for every help desk ticket, phone call, or meeting. Our customer service is part of the package, and you can consider us an extension of your team. Our MSP service offerings include help desk, network and server administration, network monitoring, equipment installation and configuration, backup and disaster recovery, and even after-hours support. Working on your budget and considering outsourcing your IT functions? Let’s chat.