Cyber attacks have become a large issue and concern for many businesses. Since technology continues to change and develop everyday, it has revealed vulnerability in protective digital software. The result of this being the significant rise of security breaches, with any and all industries being at risk. However, there are those who are at a greater risk than others, and are commonly targeted by cyber attackers. Here are the 4 most vulnerable industries to cyber attacks, and why they require higher level security.
The healthcare industry is specifically targeted based on the amount of sensitive and personal data they handle. Ransomware poses a great threat to healthcare companies, with cybercriminals making their data inaccessible unless a payment has been made. With healthcare industries possessing multiple patient files, personal information, and payment statements, the attackers are aware that the organization cannot bear the expense of losing data.
When it comes to government data, there’s no surprise as to why cyber criminals would desire access. Government agencies contain personal identifying information, classified documents, and military secrets. These agencies face threats such as cyber espionage, which is the spying and installation of spyware to government devices. They also must look out for insider threats, which is the leaking of confidential information through their own employees. This can be both accidental and deliberate. Phishing can also trick employees into sending sensitive information to the wrong recipient.
Due to the large amount of money and financial information banks and other financial services manage, cybercriminals have all the reason to target them. Money has become extremely digital, which has created new ways to exploit any weaknesses in the system. Thieves will phish, use mobile malware, and hack into banking accounts and commit fraudulent transactions.
Shops in-store and online are vulnerable to the theft of valuable data. They struggle with the issue of credit card fraud, online data breaches, and identity theft. Credit card fraud can cause all kinds of unwanted trouble for retailers, and can lose profit at the hands of fraudulent purchases. Identity theft poses a threat because of thieves that steal other user information to create credit card accounts to make purchases. Customer credentials are at risk at the expense of data breaches, so security software should always be stable and secure.
These industries might be commonly targeted, but any company of any size can be at a risk of cyberattacks. Taking preventative measures will protect your company, your employees, and those who keep you in business. If you have any questions about our IT services, contact us today! Follow us on Facebook to keep up with our latest blogs!
As we evolve in the technological world, our demands for more advanced technology grows. With the use of artificial intelligence, we can achieve endless possibilities in both businesses and entertainment as A.I. continues to make breakthroughs. With the amount of beneficial uses A.I. has offered us in our daily lives, it seems appropriate to celebrate it! Artificial Intelligence Appreciation Day is a day to acknowledge the contribution A.I. has made, and how it’s changed the course of how we perform in many industries today.
Where A.I. is Found Today
A.I. has proven itself useful in today’s day and age, but where could we find it most commonly? Today, artificial intelligence can be used to improve customer experience, especially for those who enjoy shopping. The E-commerce industry has found a new and personalized way to engage with their customers, like making recommendations that correlate with a user’s purchase and browsing history. Many companies also refer customers to an A.I. chatbot that can answer frequently asked questions. This provides the customer with a quicker and more efficient fix, rather than having to wait on the phone for a live customer service operator. Education has also utilized A.I., giving administrators and other faculty members the ability to educate more students at a time. This enables teachers to digitize their programs, creating educational content for a larger audience. Healthcare has also made some productive breakthroughs with the help of A.I., used in machines that can detect diseases and analyze lab work much quicker than the average worker.
How To Celebrate
If you want to find ways to celebrate and appreciate artificial intelligence, simply take the time to research it. Where you find A.I. might surprise and fascinate you, and learning about what it does to improve our daily lives is the best way to express gratitude. You may be surprised to learn that A.I. is even found in your favorite video game. Pick up the nearest PC or controller and interact with the game’s NCP characters. If you wish to become more hands-on, create your own project by teaching yourself or others how to program, a skill that could benefit you and your future self later down the line. If you happen to spark up an interest, convince yourself to attend A.I. conventions to gather and converse with other A.I. enthusiasts.
Finding ways to celebrate A.I. are endless, just like the capabilities it continues to accumulate everyday.
It’s common to jump on a website and immediately see a pop-up regarding accepting cookies, and can even be mandatory if you wish to continue to the site. But have you ever truly understood what exactly you’re accepting? Cookies and privacy terms can vary website to website, but here’s what you should know before you make the click.
What Are Cookies?
When To Say No
It can be hard to differentiate between a trustworthy or an untrustworthy site, so always pay attention to what terms you accept. If you have any questions about our IT services, contact us today! Follow us on Facebook to keep up with our latest blogs!
What’s better, Gmail or Outlook? These are the two leading platforms when it comes to business email. Both are great options and come with good features and security. They also cost about the same. The one you choose will be based on your business’s specific needs.
While Outlook has about 7 years on Gmail, the email platform offers some great features for business. The apps that are included with a Google Workspaces subscription allow your team to work on projects at the same time. You don’t have to download and send the document. You can share the Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides within the apps. You also don’t have to worry about making sure you’re working on the latest version.
Outlook’s interface is a little bit more confusing than Gmail’s but the program offers advanced management features and allows you to manage other users’ inboxes and calendars. There is also the ability to set more advanced rules. It may be a better choice if your company is sending a large number of emails.
When comparing costs, both programs are very similar. Both have a free version that comes with 15GB of storage. Note that the free versions would not have your domain connected and would not be the best option for businesses.
Starter Plans – Gmail and Outlook both have a starter plan that cost $6 per month per user. Google’s plan comes with 30GB of storage and the ability to work offline. Outlook’s plan comes with 1TB of storage but includes only web and mobile apps.
Standard Plans – The standard Gmail plan is $12 a month per user. It includes 2TB of storage. The Outlook standard plan is $12.50 a month per user and comes with 1TB of storage. It also includes the downloadable desktop apps that are not included with the starter plan.
While both email platforms offer top security which is included in all plans. Outlook has more security features in its highest tier and allows users to encrypt emails. This would be a good option for hospitals or businesses that needed to send medical information or other confidential messages. Gmail’s security is also good and offers excellent malware and malicious software detection.
Both Gmail and Outlook are good options for business and offer great features. If you have any questions about setting up your business email or switching platforms, contact us today!
Follow us on Facebook or to keep up with our latest blogs!
Algorithms are one of the most used technologies in the world. They are used for anything and everything, including cell phones, computers, security systems and more. Businesses also use algorithms for a better success rate and improve their optimization. Here’s how businesses are using algorithms.
Algorithms are most used in the human resource field. Certain algorithms sort people or items into categories that can later be used by the business. This is also used in popular job posting websites. They can easily sort through candidates based on specific qualifications the job has put in place. Overall, with the help of algorithms, this leads to more efficiency and productivity in all work fields.
Algorithms can soon find themselves in the healthcare industry. With them, doctors can easily input symptoms into the system and find the right medication or treatment for the illness. Not only that, but it can track and categorize patients that make it easier for doctors to pull records. Algorithm programs specifically for this have already made their way to the healthcare field and can be used with other technologies such as artificial intelligence making a more advanced healthcare system.
Have you ever opened a social media app and seen an advertisement for something you recently looked up or interested in? That is a result of an algorithm. They take into account anything you have looked up, liked, or typed and put it through a filter system that shows certain information, items or advertisements that are catered to you. This is the most popular way algorithms are used.
It is also important to know that everyone has access to algorithms and correlating data. From big, well known companies to small start up businesses, algorithms can be used and be beneficial for all.
Want to know more about how algorithms can help your business? WesTec services can help! Feel free to contact us and check out our services to see how we can assist you. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter for updates.
If you work on a computer all day long, you’re likely to encounter tech issues. At WesTec, we believe knowledge is power. Therefore, we have compiled a list of a few quick fixes to common tech issues:
For a number of reasons, you may receive a dialogue box stating that the application you are trying to use is unresponsive. This issue will prevent you from using the application and will likely slow the performance of your system. Fortunately, there’s no need to call IT support, as this issue has an easy fix!
On PC, press Ctrl + Alt + Delete in order to access your Task Manager. From this dialogue box, you can end specific tasks. Your Task Manager will indicate which applications are unresponsive, and you can hit “End Task” to close the application.
On Mac, you can achieve the same result by pressing Command + Option + Esc. You will receive a pop-up displaying active applications. Select the unresponsive application and click “Force Quit.”
Slow or poor internet connection
There’s nothing more disruptive than a slow or poor internet connection. When you encounter this issue, minimize downtime with this quick fix.
Your wireless internet connection is supported by a router. Restart your router by unplugging its power source for 30 – 60 seconds. Then, plug the router back in. You will notice it may take a few minutes before you have a stable internet connection. If this does not work, try restarting your computer and checking your connection again.
You may also consider clearing your browsing history and cache. A collection of cookies and cache could be slowing specific sites. Every internet browser is different, but you can easily clear your cache in your general settings.
Slow computer performance
Is your system underperforming? There could be several reasons for this! Before calling IT, there are a few things you can try in order to improve the speed of your computer.
If you have too many windows or programs open and running at once, this could be affecting your computer’s performance. Close any windows or programs you are not using. If your computer is full of downloads, try deleting any files you no longer need and empty your trash bin. This will likely improve your computer’s performance, but it also wouldn’t hurt to restart your computer.
If this issue persists, we recommend calling IT, as you may have a virus that is affecting your system.
Struggling to troubleshoot your tech issues? Minimize the downtime spent searching for solutions and outsource IT support with WesTec Services! Interested in learning more? Contact us today!
HTTPS usage on the web has taken off as Chrome has evolved its security indicators. HTTPS has now become a requirement for many new browser features, and Chrome is dedicated to making it as easy as possible to set up HTTPS. Let’s take a look at how.
For several years, Google has moved toward a more secure web by strongly advocating that sites adopt the Secure HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTPS) encryption. And last year, Google began marking some HyperText Transfer Protocol(HTTP) pages as “not secure” to help users comprehend risks of unencrypted websites. Beginning in July 2018 with the release of a Chrome update, Google’s browser will mark all HTTP sites as “not secure.”
Chrome’s move was mostly brought on by increased HTTPS adoption. Eighty-one of the top 100 sites on the web default to HTTPS, and the majority of Chrome traffic is already encrypted.
Here’s how the transition to security has progressed, so far:
Over 68% of Chrome traffic on both Android and Windows is now protected
Over 78% of Chrome traffic on both Chrome OS and Mac is now protected
81 of the top 100 sites on the web use HTTPS by default
HTTPS: The benefits and difference
What’s the difference between HTTP and HTTPS? With HTTP, information you type into a website is transmitted to the site’s owner with almost zero protection along the journey. Essentially, HTTP can establish basic web connections, but not much else.
When security is a must, HTTPS sends and receives encrypted internet data. This means that it uses a mathematical algorithm to make data unreadable to unauthorized parties.
#1 HTTPS protects a site’s integrity
HTTPS encryption protects the channel between your browser and the website you’re visiting, ensuring no one can tamper with the traffic or spy on what you’re doing.
Without encryption, someone with access to your router or internet service provider(ISP) could intercept (or hack) information sent to websites or inject malware into otherwise legitimate pages.
#2 HTTPS protects the privacy of your users
HTTPS prevents intruders from eavesdropping on communications between websites and their visitors. One common misconception about HTTPS is that only websites that handle sensitive communications need it. In reality, every unprotected HTTP request can reveal information about the behaviors and identities of users.
#3 HTTPS is the future of the web
HTTPS has become much easier to implement thanks to services that automate the conversion process, such as Let’s Encrypt and Google’s Lighthouse program. These tools make it easier for website owners to adopt HTTPS.
Chrome’s new notifications will help users understand that HTTP sites are less secure, and move the web toward a secure HTTPS web by default. HTTPS is easier to adopt than ever before, and it unlocks both performance improvements and powerful new features that aren’t possible with HTTP.
How can small-business owners implement and take advantage of this new interface? Call today for a quick chat with one of our experts to get started.
Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.
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.
Get in touch
2916 West TC Jester Blvd.,
Houston, TX 77018