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6 Things Every Computer User Should Know How to Do

Easy Ways to Protect the Health of Your Computer

The Importance of a Computer Network Health Check Audit

5 Facts About Data Loss and Recovery

3 Stats to Know About Access Control Systems

Mobile Security Threats

Helpful Tips for Safe Computing

4 Emerging Technology Trends To Expect in 2021

The Benefits of Adopting a Switchvox VoIP System

What Are Deepfakes?

Author Archive

6 Things Every Computer User Should Know How to Do - WesTec Services

6 Things Every Computer User Should Know How to Do

With emerging technology, comes a major learning curve. For many, it’s difficult to even keep up! No worries — WesTec has got you covered and our IT support professionals are keeping it simple. Here are 6 things every computer user should know how to do in 2021:

IT support

Setup Your Wireless Network

If computer users must know one thing, it should be how to setup a wireless network and resolve wifi issues. A wireless connection is supported by a router; this router must be plugged in for users to access the internet. Most routers have several lights on the front that indicate the strength of the connection. If these lights are not on, the user should unplug and reset the router. Your computer will also indicate whether you are connected to the wireless network. On PC, the status of your connection can be found in the bottom right corner. On Mac, it can be found in the upper right corner.

 

Perform a Data Backup

System failure and natural disaster often strike with little to no warning. Therefore, it is crucial you know how to perform regular data backups. You can backup important data and files on flash drives and external hard drives. PC and Mac also offer software and servers that you can use to backup your data.

 

Install Antivirus Software

According to InfoWorld, 30% of computers in the United States are infected by some type of virus. Therefore, antivirus software is a must! Any IT professional would be happy to install your anti-virus software, but this process is actually pretty beginner-friendly. Antivirus software, like McAfee and Norton, can be downloaded directly from the internet and installed with ease. Dialogue boxes will walk you through the installation process.

IT support

Basic Troubleshooting

IT support professionals troubleshoot computer issues all the time, but it doesn’t hurt for a computer user to know basic troubleshooting skills. If your programs are failing or you are encountering an issue you cannot resolve, you must troubleshoot. Troubleshooting will identify what the problem is. To troubleshoot on PC, open your Start menu, then select “Settings” > “Update & Security” > “Troubleshoot.” On Mac, open your Apple menu and select “Restart.” Then, press and hold the “D” key while your Mac restarts. A screen with a list of languages will appear. Select your language of choice and your computer will begin running diagnostics.

 

Change Basic Settings

If you own a computer, you must know how to change your settings. Whether it’s adjusting sound levels or connecting a printer, knowing how to change basic settings comes in handy. On PC, open your Start menu and select “Settings” or “Control Panel” to make these necessary adjustments. On Mac, simply select the Preferences application, which can be found on your Dock.

 

Access Task Manager

If your computer is slow or unresponsive, you may have too many active programs open or a specific program has failed. Before calling your IT support team, try accessing your computer’s Task Manager. The Task Manager allows you to view active programs and force quit specific programs if necessary. On PC, you can access the Task Manager by holding Ctrl + Alt + Delete. On Mac, hold Command + Option + Esc. 

 

It’s helpful to know how to perform a few basic computer tasks, but if you’re just not tech-savvy, WesTec Services can help! We offer a variety of IT support services that can be tailored to your needs. Interested in learning more? Contact us today!

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Easy Ways to Protect the Health of Your Computer - WesTec Services

Easy Ways to Protect the Health of Your Computer

man using access control systemMaintaining your computer’s health requires regular care and maintenance. Here are a few things you can do to protect the health of your computer on a daily basis:

 

Routine deep cleans

You would be surprised by the number of files that collect on a computer over time. Too many files and programs can actually affect a computer’s load speed and overall performance. Therefore, it is crucial that you perform routine deep cleans on your system. Delete any files that you no longer need and are simply taking up space. If there are files you would like to keep, store these on an external hard drive (and back this drive up) before removing the files from your system.  

 

Download security updates

You’ve likely received notifications to download new security updates and declined for the sake of time and convenience. If you do not regularly download security updates, your computer may be vulnerable to hacking. These updates work to “patch” any holes in your computer’s security. Without these updates, hackers can intercept your security and access your information, files, programs, etc.

 

Install and update antivirus software

Viruses and malware can affect your computer’s overall performance, which can disrupt productivity. Therefore, it is important that you install an antivirus software and update this software regularly. Antivirus software will scan your computer for existing viruses, resolve these issues, and block more viruses from infecting your computer. 

 

When you fail to perform routine deep cleans and maintain your antivirus and security software, your computer is at risk of system failure. At WesTec Services, we understand it can be easy to forget to do these things. Don’t neglect your computer any longer — outsource IT support with WesTec Services! From IT consulting services and network installation to backup & disaster recovery, we’ve got you covered. Protect your computer’s health with WesTec Services. Contact us today!

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The Importance of a Computer Network Health Check Audit - WesTec Services

The Importance of a Computer Network Health Check Audit

The Importance of a Computer Network Health Check Audit - WesTec Services97% of the day to day problems that you experience with your computer network can be fixed easily and inexpensively with regular and proactive maintenance. If you’re experiencing unnecessary technical disruptions, you need a computer network health check audit. WesTec Services has compiled a list of benefits of network health audits:

 

Measures performance

One of the primary purposes of conducting a network health check audit is to measure the performance of your system. A health audit will measure the speed and security of your computer. Speed and security can affect your productivity. Therefore, it is important to determine whether your computer is performing the way it should be.

 

The Importance of a Computer Network Health Check Audit - WesTec ServicesIdentifies vulnerabilities

A health audit can also help you identify all the ways your computer could be vulnerable to malware and other viruses. According to DataProt, 30% of computers in the United States are infected with some type of virus — that means there are a lot of people experiencing downtime. Downtime can put you out of business, so it is important to identify vulnerabilities before they affect your system. If your computer has already been infected, a health audit will find this, as well.  

 

Offers recommendations and solutions

Once the health audit is completed, IT professionals can offer recommendations or solutions to problems plaguing your system. The IT professionals working on your system are trained in knowing how to address common concerns that can prevent your system from performing the way it should be.

 

At WesTec Services, we offer computer network health check audits (worth $295) at no cost to you! After performing an audit of your system, we will generate a report that details all system vulnerabilities and offer recommendations for improving the functionality of your system. Interested in learning more? Schedule a call with one of our professionals today!

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5 Facts About Data Loss and Recovery - WesTec Services

5 Facts About Data Loss and Recovery

5 Facts About Data Loss and Recovery - WesTec ServicesEven the “smartest” devices fail sometimes, and when this occurs, your business is at risk for data loss. This can be catastrophic for productivity and revenue. Therefore, it is crucial that businesses implement a data recovery strategy. Here are five facts you need to know about data loss and recovery:

 

78% of data loss is a result of system failure or malfunction

You heard that right — well over half of data loss is a result of system failure! System failure is unpredictable, meaning that it is beyond human control. The only safe way to prevent data loss of this kind is be proactive and prepared for the unexpected.

 

60% of companies that experience data loss will go out of business within six months

In 2021, we rely on technology for almost everything. Businesses often store important or confidential information in their computer systems with no physical copies for backup. When disaster strikes, companies have a lot more to lose than just their data. In fact, 60% of companies that experience this loss will go out of business within six months. 

 

50% of backup restores fail

5 Facts About Data Loss and Recovery - WesTec ServicesBacking up your files is one of the best ways to ensure your data is safe if system failure were to occur. However, data backup is not as simple as backing up your files one time! Half of all backup restores fail. Therefore, you must regularly backup your files on several devices and servers.

 

1 in 5 businesses do not have a recovery plan

In an effort to cut costs, many businesses have no data recovery plan in place — as many as 1 in 5! However, not having a plan can actually be more costly, as data loss often results in downtime and even closures. Preparation and taking preventative measures is the only way to safeguard your systems and business.

 

96% of businesses with a recovery plan fully recover

It’s no surprise that businesses that develop and implement a data loss recovery plan are far more likely to recover after disaster. Are you prepared?

WesTec Services wants to help you safeguard your data! The professionals at WesTec Services specialize in data backup and recovery, and serve firms all across Houston. Don’t put your business at risk by being ill-prepared — schedule a call with one of our professionals today! 

Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn!

 

3 Stats to Know About Access Control Systems - WesTec Services

3 Stats to Know About Access Control Systems

3 Stats to Know About Access Control Systems - WesTec ServicesIf you are looking to upgrade your security, consider an access control system. Access control systems offer many centrally controlled security options, including video surveillance, fingerprint entry systems, and key card scanners. If you’re still on the fence, here are a few stats you should know about access control systems:

 

60% of commercial burglary attempts happen after hours

Crime can happen anytime anywhere. However, for businesses, 60% of burglary attempts happen after hours. Therefore, it is crucial that businesses adopt an access control system to secure their facilities 24/7.

Criminals prefer easy access — if gaining access to your facility would require a lot of effort, you’re less likely to fall victim to burglary. These added security measures will serve as a crime deterrent.

 

With the COVID-19 pandemic, 44% of workers say access control is more important now than ever before

Over the past year, we have seen a rise in COVID-19 cases. In an effort to control the spread of the illness, we have had to take extra safety precautions. Many believe access control systems could keep employees safe, as it can minimize the flow of traffic in any facility.

With these systems, you can decide who comes and goes with the use of keycards or fingerprint recognition. With fewer people coming and going, there is less risk of further spreading the virus.

 

The access control system industry is projected to be worth $12.8 billion by 2025

There is a reason the access control system industry is steadily growing — and it’s because these systems work! Access control systems are the only truly proactive step a user can take to augment the security within a facility. With access control systems, you can monitor the attendance of your employees and set parameters for visitors and guests that visit your building.

 

With an access control system, you can better regulate who comes and goes in your facility. Interested in learning more about the benefits of adopting an access control system? WesTec Services can help. Schedule a call with one of our professionals today!

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Mobile Security Threats

Most technology users are aware of the need to protect their devices but fail to understand that the mobile device can be a much bigger, and different, risk than a work desktop computer. Learn more about mobile security threats and how you can avoid them:

 

Is mobile security important?

While many people choose easy passwords or fail to password-protect their phone at all, mobile devices are a host to some of our most personal and sensitive data. Most users keep passwords, credit cards, and personal information all in their phones, a gold mine of information for any cyber-criminal. Protecting your cell phone is more important now than ever due to the increase of valuable data we store on it as well as the increase in mobile security breaches and cyber-criminals. 

Mobile Security Threats - WesTec

Mobile Security Breaches 

Mobile security breaches are completely different from desktops. On mobile phones, there is not much need to log on, especially if the user does not have a password. Furthermore, most times apps are constantly running in the background and do not require passwords to access all of your different accounts. 

Secondly, most mobile users are less likely to check the validity of a link before it is clicked on. The small phone screen makes it difficult to see an entire link and pages often show up differently or incorrectly on mobile. This makes it much easier for fake links and phishing schemes to attack your phone and threaten your security. 

 

How to Protect Your Information

A key part of avoiding mobile security threats is understanding what apps are tracking your information and which information they are using. Many apps use information such as pictures, contacts, and internet data to make decisions about what to show you. It is important that users understand how their information is being used. 

Mobile Security Threats - WesTec

Another security recommendation is to avoid malicious apps. There are third-party app stores available on the internet with many different offerings but it is recommended that you only buy from official app stores like Apple or Google Play. These app stores are much more closely monitored and therefore safer than apps downloaded from deep in the Web. 

 

If possible, avoid using public wifi networks. Using unsecured public WiFi can give people the opportunity to intercept your information and easily gain access to it. If you must use public WiFi, download a VPN. A VPN, or virtual private network, creates a private network from the public internet, allowing you to establish an encrypted and secure connection while accessing the public internet. 

 

Mobile security threats are very real and can very dangerous to the privacy of your personal information. Choose a business technology provider that you can trust. WesTec offers many different services, from IT consulting to smartphone support. For more information, visit our website or contact us today.

 

 



Westec- Tips for Safe Computing

Helpful Tips for Safe Computing

As our society leans more on technology, the opportunities for threats to interfere continue to increase. Safe computing requires more user awareness than ever before as well as maintenance of passwords and data security.

Here are a few tips on how you can keep your information safe online:

 

Secure your passwords. 

Password hacking is the easiest way for anyone to access your information and cause damage. Switch up your password on each website you use, store them in a safe place, and be sure to change them frequently for the most security. Include both uppercase and lowercase, symbols, and numbers for the most difficult-to-guess passwords.

 

Automatically download important updates.

Updates such as MacOS are critical to the integrity of your computer and should therefore be completed as soon as they become available. Adjust your updates in settings to download automatically.

 

Never access sensitive websites on public WiFi.

Westec - Safe Computing

Your data could be easily copied or stolen on a sensitive network. In addition, do not access or share sensitive data on unreliable networks. 

 

Be aware of phishing attempts. 

Never open an email from someone you do not know. If there is a link or document attached in the email, absolutely do not open it. Hackers often use this to automatically download malware onto your computer when opened and to access your information or ruin it altogether.

 

Back up your important information onto an external drive. 

Whether it be a full backup hard drive or a flash drive, secure sensitive data onto a protected drive in case of emergency and for extra protection. 


Don’t let yourself become the next hacked credit card or identity theft. Practice safe computing and protect your valuable information with the security it deserves. WesTec Services is a trusted and experienced IT services provider located in the Houston area. Allow us to keep your data safe by giving us a call today or visiting our website.

Trends - Westec - 12312020

4 Emerging Technology Trends To Expect in 2021

With every year that passes, we make more and more advancements in technology. Here are a few technology trends in 2021 that you can expect to see:

Robotics, Drones, Vehicle Automation

In recent years, we have seen a steady increase in the use of robotics in the4 Emerging Technology Trends You Can Expect to See in 2021 - WesTec
care and living sectors. This is meant to cut down on the need for human labor and to make jobs easier for people to complete. We expect to see a rise in robots and drones as a tool used by humans to streamline processes, not to replace human jobs altogether. 

5G 

With 5G, our opportunities for connectivity and internet use continue to expand. Services could include increased usage of cloud technology, making technology including virtual reality and gaming networks available from anywhere. This removes the need for stationary consoles and could make our world even more mobile than ever before. 

4 Emerging Technology Trends You Can Expect to See in 2021 - WesTecExtended Reality

While virtual reality is known to be when a user enters a completely virtual environment through technology, augmented reality is when it is used to view the real world. Both of these make up the category of extended reality and are expected to become even more prevalent in 2021. ER tools have been used mainly for recreational purposes in the past but can also be used in medicine and education to solve problems in creative, new ways. As more data becomes available, we will make use of this new technology to sort out new solutions and information within it. 

Artificial Intelligence

Lastly, AI is and will continue to be one of the biggest trends we see follow us into 2021. The use of Big Data will continue to increase as information is collected from more sources, requiring the use of artificial intelligence to process and sort out the solutions within them. 

Artificial Intelligence allows us the ability to visualize and understand patterns in customer behavior and other activities that take place online. As we progress, we expect an increase in the number of tools and our ability to analyze this data and pull better insights and conclusions. 

 

With all of these possibilities for technology trends in 2021, you need an IT Support Team that can keep up with the changes. Here at WesTec Services, our professionals are trained and tested to ensure we can meet the ever-changing marketplace and advances in technology. Give us a call today or learn more on our website to see how WesTec can help you. 



The Benefits of Adopting a Switchvox VoIP System - WesTec Services

The Benefits of Adopting a Switchvox VoIP System

VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) has revolutionized the way so many people do business! VoIP allows users to make voice calls over a broadband internet connection, converting voice into digital signals. Businesses everywhere are ditching their traditional phone systems and adopting a Switchvox VoIP system. Here’s a few reasons you should too:

 

Switchvox VoIP is dependable

Business can be unpredictable – you need a system you can rely on all hours of the day! With Switchvox, IT professionals will host, monitor, and maintain your system 24/7. If you encounter issues with your system or have questions, professionals are ready to assist and troubleshoot.

 

Switchvox VoIP is economical

Switchvox is not only more affordable than most traditional phone systems, but there are no additional costs for set-up, installation, or maintenance.

Telecommunications shouldn’t break the bank! Unlike traditional phone systems, Switchvox boasts a variety of features for an all-inclusive price. With Switchvox, you can spend less on telecommunications and allocate funds elsewhere.

 

Switchvox VoIP is simple to use

Navigating a new system can be intimidating. The learning curve that comes with adopting a new system is often the reason many people are hesitant to make the switch. However, this isn’t a concern with Switchvox!

Your employees will love their new system, as Switchvox boasts a user-friendly, instinctive interface.  

 

Switchvox VoIP is flexible

With Switchvox, you can make calls any time anywhere. VoIP systems are cloud-based, meaning all data is stored and hosted on a cloud server, which is accessible anywhere in the world — as long as you have server credentials.

Traditional phone systems do not offer this flexibility. However, VoIP supports remote work — and as the demand for remote work increases, more people are making the switch.

 

WesTec Services offers a wide range of Switchvox systems. Our team will help you decide which system best suits your business and its needs. With our streamlined and rapid set-up process, you’ll be making and receiving VoIP calls in just a matter of minutes. Interested in learning more? Contact us today!

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What Are Deepfakes? - WesTec Services

What Are Deepfakes?

With the advancement of technology over time, new types of cybersecurity threats emerge for consumers and businesses to worry about. Lately, deepfake cybersecurity breaches have become more common. According to Tech Beacon, deepfakes are defined as “synthetic media in which a person in a video or audio is replaced with someone else’s likeness or voice.” This type of threat can ruin businesses quickly due to how convincing the synthetic media are.

The Dangers

Due to the advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, cyberhackers and criminals can create false audio and images pretending to be you or another coworker. Hackers are so precise, they can perform flawless impersonations. The frustrating part of the process is that if you don’t know this is a false video call or audio, hackers can easily obtain the information they need. Once financial details or unreleased company information falls into the wrong hands, it can be disastrous. 

Experts found that deepfake hacking methods have increased by 84% between December 2018 and October 2019. Research estimates $250 million in losses, as a result of deepfake hacking for the 2020 fiscal year.

 

Why It’s Popular Among Hackers

Businesses still struggle with high-level email phishing scams, making deepfakes harder to prevent. Due to the lack of knowledge surrounding this threat, deepfakes are becoming a new favorite method for cybercriminals who have the time and patience to implement this method. Deepfake hackers attack businesses in these ways:

  • Impersonating clients or suppliers asking for payments
  • Pretending to be supervisors and business owners, asking for fund transfers or sensitive information
  • Using fake blackmail audio and videos for extortion
  • Presenting fake pictures, videos, and audio files on social media to create slander campaigns

 

The Solution

The first step in preventing deepfake attacks is to be aware it is a method of cybersecurity destruction. Once you are informed, the next question is how you can protect your business. There are a few available solutions, like Deeptrace or Cogito. These software programs can be expensive for small- and medium-sized businesses. For those on a limited budget, here are some things to consider executing immediately:

  • Educate staff members about deepfakes, reporting odd situations before proceeding with any actions asked
  • Add two-step verification to your system for emails, phone calls, and video sessions, ensuring none provided over these communication methods are used over existing ones
  • Strengthen security measures for cybersecurity, adding systems if you currently have none or looking into upgrades for your current system
  • Add additional steps for fund transfer verification — this helps ensure the transfer is supposed to occur and can save your business thousands of dollars, if not.

Taking action now is the best thing you can do for your business. Employees and business owners should also periodically check in on the issue to see if better methods of protection are discovered. 

 

As new threats arise, you must be proactive! At WesTec Services, our IT professionals want to help you safeguard your business and its assets. If you’re unsure how to get started, contact us today.

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Mission: WesTec will be a “turn-key” solution for all of its clients’ business connectivity needs. It will offer efficient and effective solutions, directly and with strategic partners, that create tangible value for its clients at every point of contact. Westec will serve all people and entities with a servant’s heart.

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2916 West TC Jester Blvd., Suite 104

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