Tips to Ensure Your Employee’s Passwords are Secure 

There have recently been a number of high-profile security violations. This makes many businesses feel uneasy regarding the security of their business, passwords, and secure or sensitive information. The good news is, there are eight tips that can be used to enhance overall password security and ensure no nefarious actions take place. Tech_Login

1. Don’t use a commonly hacked passwords, such as 123456, abc123, ninja, welcome, qwerty, etc.
2. Choose long passwords.
3. Create a complicated, but easy to remember password. For example, use the sentence “I drive a 1999 Nissan Pathfinder.” The password should be IDA99NP.
4. Don’t use the same password for every single device.
5. Create a set of simple rules to develop passwords and make sure employees use it as well.
6. Change your password often.
7. When it comes go Google, use the two-step verification process.
8. Use a free site to test your password, such as “How Secure Is My Password.”

Taking the time to create a secure password will likely save you from quite a bit of stress and hassle down the road.

Hack Proof Your Home

If you believe that the bad guy will have to physically break into your home to steal from you, well you likely need to think again. For each device you connect to the Internet, the more potential information thieves will be able to access and gather about you – such as your credit card information, bank account numbers and Social Security numbers. Hackers

This is why more and more cyber criminals have turned their attention to hacking into common household items, which includes baby monitors, thermostats, TVs and even refrigerators to crack your entire home network and gain access to your personal information.

While a quality home security system is one of the best ways to protect your home and family from physical burglars, the tips here will also help you keep cyber criminals at bay.

•  Change all the default passwords. Keeping the factory-set passwords and usernames means that you are extremely vulnerable to hackers. Many manufacturers use the same passwords for all their products, which hackers can use to gain access to your network.

•  Install software updates. Hackers can also gain entrance to your home network with the software that is running on your connected devices. This means you need to update the software when prompted to, by the product manufacturer.

•  Location considerations. It is essential that you don’t place your connected devices in areas where they could capture personal information, such as video and pictures.

Keeping your home hack-proof is not difficult, but it will require a bit of time and effort. In the long run, this will be well-worth it.

By |February 14th, 2016|Categories: Portland, Technology Corner|Tags: |0 Comments

Is Your Business Ready for Biometric Security?

Walking through any average office building you will find login passwords stuck to computer screens or sitting on desks. Much like leaving a key in the file cabinet, writing down a password provides a would-be-thief with access to a large amount of sensitive data. The good news is, there’s technology now available that offers a solution to this, as well as a number of other security weaknesses that may be present in your business – biometric security.
Fingerprint USB
In the past, access to a secure building or a computer system was given based on something you had in your possession – a keycard, passcode, etc. However, the biometric security device uses a unique physiological characteristic, which is used for authenticating you.

There are a number of different forms of biometric technology, but the most commonly used is the fingerprint scanner in a laptop, used on a USB device and even integrated into portable storage devices. While there is also the option to use retina scanners, the fact is, not many businesses can justify the cost of these devices.
By |January 14th, 2016|Categories: Portland, Technology Corner|Tags: |0 Comments

Tips to Protect Your Tablet During the Holidays

The popularity of the tablet has increased significantly and virtually everyone has or uses one on a regular basis. However, those who don’t have them, want them, which puts the tablets at high risk of being stolen. During the holidays, when many people are distracted or busy, it is prime time to steal tablets – but with a few tips this can be prevented.

Don’t Ever Leave the Tablet Alone
Besides in your own home, there is no safe location to leave your tablet, especially during the busy holiday season. You should not leave the tablet in your work cubicle, in your vehicle or at the dinner table in a restaurant. This is too much of a temptation for some, and your tablet can go missing quickly. Keep it with you and hidden at all times.
 
Use Password Protection
While there is no physical protection offered by a password, and it won’t stop someone from resetting the entire device, it can help ensure your data is not stolen. If you lose your tablet, rather than having it stolen, it may also be a good idea to have your contact information on the front – just in case an honest person finds it. There are some tablets that also offer the option for remote wiping, which may be a good idea.
Tablet Found
Use a Quality Locking Program
Take some time to do your research and install software or programs to lock the tablet if someone continually enters the wrong password into the device. This will help to protect your tablet from being used by someone who steals it.

Apps That Will Locate Your Tablet
There’s also several good apps that you can download that will locate your tablet once it is stolen. Just Google which one is best rated for your specific tablet.

Taking the time to safeguard your tablet will help ensure that you don’t suffer a loss this holiday season.

By |December 14th, 2015|Categories: Portland, Technology Corner|Tags: |0 Comments

Finding Lost Belongings: New Websites Leads the Way

According to Nationwide.com, a home burglary occurs every 15 seconds someplace in the U.S.A. On average, each break-in results in a financial loss that equals approx. $1,600. While you may have taken steps to protect your home or business – including the use of a home security system – there may still be instances when the bad guys come out on top. If you ever do fall victim to a burglary, chances are you want to take steps to get your stuff back.

Thanks to modern technology, there are a now a number of websites available that can help you hunt down your stolen belongings. Prey App

Prey: This is an app that was designed to help you find a stolen or lost tablet, laptop or phone. The app will help you locate these items by taking pictures from the camera on the device, screenshots from the computer or even wipe data remotely from the device. Prey is a type of software installed on your devices and then tracked with an online system. There is a free version as well as various pay versions available. (www.PreyProject.com)

Stolen Property: This is an international stolen property database. It allows users to report that their item has been stolen. You can also search the database to see if any device you are considering purchasing was stolen. (www.Stolen-Property.com)

Stolen Lost Found: Another online database offered to track, find and report found, lost or stolen property. (www.StolenLostFound.org)

Each of these sites is specifically designed to help you recover any item that has been stolen from you, or lost. Taking some initiative can help you recover items that are missing and may save you hundreds of thousands of dollars in terms of replacement costs.

How Geofencing Can Make Your Home Smarter

Smart phones, smart devices and now, smart houses. While this is not necessarily a new concept, it is one becoming more and more mainstream. From automated security systems and convenience features, there are a number of ways to make your home “smart.”
Geofencing
Geofencing allows you to define various geographical barriers and then associate these barriers with specific automation actions. Essentially, it is a virtual boundary, where you can control almost anything related to your home in terms of electronics, appliances and security.

The technology can be used to set up a type of simulated field around your home, or even your neighborhood.

Now, you may be wondering what the benefit of this is?

When Geofencing is set up properly it will provide you with mobile alerts and allow you to manage household equipment. Some of the features include:

•    Know when loved ones come into or leave a specific area
•    Arm or disarm your security system
•    Adjust your cooling and heating units
•    Activate lights
•    Control your video surveillance

When you install a geofence you can sync your thermostat, security system, appliances and lights so they come on or become activated during certain times of the day, according to your family’s schedule. It can even provide automatic adjustments as family members exit or enter the set limits, as well.

No longer do you have to worry or wonder if you left the oven on or forgot to turn up the AC. You can arrive home late at night to a well-lit and safer home. This is beneficial for any size home, in any location and is a type of technology that will likely be mainstream in the very near future.

Handy Gadgets to Prevent “The Case of the Illusive Keys”

Do you seem to always be searching for your keys? This is a common issue since keys are small and pretty easy to misplace. Also, when you carry them with you everywhere you go, you are bound to put them down and forget about them at some point.

If you are ready to minimize the stress that goes along with frantically searching for your keys, then you should consider purchasing one of the handy, key finding gadgets highlighted here.

The Stick N’ Find
This is the high tech gadget that will help you find your misplaced keys quickly. It is a GPS system designed specifically for keys. You attach the Stick N’ Find to your key ring and then download the corresponding app to your smartphone. If you wind up losing your keys, all you have to do is activate the app and you will receive a radar-type of map to find their general location. Don’t worry, it is password protected which means that no one else can use it.

The Tile Tile
This is quite the innovative little key finding device. While it has a simple design, it features a thin tag that holds an electronic chip. This chip offers GPS accessibility to show the exact location of your keys. It is similar to the previous device, but unlike that one it allows you to share the app with others. This will help you find the keys, especially if you leave them at a friend’s or family member’s house.

The Pixie
Considered one of the most precise of all the options of key finding devices, The Pixie is for those who want a pinpointed location to where they left their keys. While other devices provide a general vicinity for your keys, The Pixie provides a pinpointed location. You can also use the integrated camera and compass to actually see where you keys are.

With these devices, you never have to worry about misplacing your keys again. All you need is the key tracking device, a smart phone and Wi-Fi access and you can easily and quickly find your keys, no matter where they may be hiding.

Security Loopholes Revealed in Several Smart Tech Apps

The signals being transmitted by a number of leading fitness monitors and mobile phones via Bluetooth Low Energy are able to be easily monitored and recorded, according to a number of new studies.

Researchers from a consultancy firm studying cyber-security have developed a new app that will scan, detect and log wearable devices in an effort to show how simple it is to track the signals that are sent by these popular gadgets. According to the research, there are a number of people who wear the fitness devices, never realizing that they are constantly broadcasting and that the broadcasts are often attributed to a certain, specific device.
Wearable Tech Apps
With the use of cheap hardware or even a smartphone, it is possible to locate and identify a certain device – one that may belong to a senior business executive, politician or celebrity – up to 100 meters in the open air.

Once accessed, the information can be used for social engineering or as a portion of a physical crime or cyber-attack, since people’s movements will be known.

In 2010, BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) was first introduced for the apps that relied on the transmission of signals. The appealing factor of this new technology is that it worked without draining your device’s batteries. This technology relies on the identification of devices by their actual IP address; however, it was found that these don’t change. In many cases, the transmission will even include the name of the user or the specific device. It is estimated that by 2018 up to 90 percent of all smart devices will support the BLE technology.

What does this mean for you? Being aware of what is being transmitted is essential. This may be yet another way for would-be hackers and cyber-criminals to attack your personal information and even steal your identity. Just like any other security issue, being aware is half the battle.

Automation, Apps and Access: How Technology is Making You Safer

In this high-tech world, being able to keep your home completely protected is much easier than it has ever been in the past. Much more sophisticated than the overly-loud alarms that were used in the past, the home security gadgets today are discreet and offer tons of different features. They also require very little installation and many can be easily controlled with a Smartphone app. Some of the latest and greatest security apps you should check out are:

Ninja Blocks Ninja Blocks
This block would get the best of even the most skilled ninjas. This small device syncs up to various sensors installed on your windows, doors and other areas in your home. If motion is detected, the Ninja will send a text or make a phone call so that you can take the proper action.

Rovio – the Robot
If hiring a manned security officer is not in your budget, go for the next best thing – Rovio. Here you have a robot-on-wheels that will make the rounds in your home or business, detecting motion and recording any activity with a Wi-Fi enabled camera. You can access the video right through your Smartphone.

The Canary Security System
While this name signifies back to the days of the early devices used for carbon monoxide detection, this sophisticated system can do much more than just monitor for intruders. The Canary Security System features air quality sensors, humidity, temperature, a microphone and HD camera. You can place the device in a central location in your home and receive a call or text if there is any suspicious behavior.

Keeping your home and business safe just got easier and more efficient with these tech savvy gadgets.

Gadgets to Increase Your Safety and Your Home’s Safety this Summer

There is no question that the summer months are on their way. While this means time on the beach, lake or river, it also means you will be spending more time away from home. In order to keep your home, and yourself, safer, consider utilizing the gadgets highlighted here.

A Fake Television
Did you know that burglars are much less likely to try and break into a home that appears vacant if they see a television going? The Fake TV will simulate the color changes and lights of a regular TV screen, making it look as though there is someone inside. You can protect your home and use much less energy than what it would cost to actually leave the TV running.

Find Your Stuff Stick N Find
Are you one of those people who lose everything? Chances are you may have already invested in devices to help you find your keys if they are misplaced, but did you know that there is a gadget for other items as well? You can keep track of all your belongings with the Stick-N-Find, which is a quarter sized GPS tracker that can send a signal to your smartphone allowing you to easily keep track of your belongings.

Pool Alarms
There are a number of devices you can use to keep your child safe indoors; however, the outside world is another story. Installing a pool alarm can help to minimize the chance that your child will fall into your pool and drown. There are all types of alarms available, so be sure to find the right one for your needs.

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