Summer is right around the corner. If you haven’t tackled Spring cleaning yet, now is your opportunity! Here are a few ways to clean up your system and improve its overall performance with regular maintenance:
Dust with compressed air and wipe down the monitor
Starting with the outside of your system, dust the keyboard and mouse with a can of compressed air. Compressed air is strong and will clean out any built up dust particles and other grime. You may also consider wiping down your keyboard and mouse with an antibacterial solution, to rid the surfaces of germs and bacteria. Avoid spraying the keyboard and mouse directly — instead, lightly spritz a rag and wipe. Wipe down your monitor with a microfiber cloth to remove fingerprints and anything else that may be crusted to the monitor.
Clean hardware system
Once you have dusted the outside of your system, you should focus on cleaning your hardware. Before you begin, close any active programs/files, shut your computer down, and unplug the computer from the wall. Unscrew the hardware casing and use compressed air to dust all the nooks and crannies of your system. Compressed air is safe to use on hardware and should not cause any damage.
Turn your computer off or restart regularly
Simply putting your computer to sleep while it is not in use will cause your system minimal damage. However, you should make a habit of restarting or shutting your system down every now and then — especially if you use an older system. Rebooting your computer will prevent overheating and will allow your system to refresh its settings and resources. Allowing your computer to reboot and refresh will improve its overall performance.
Clear up drive space
One thing that will slow your computer’s performance is a full drive. Improve your computer’s performance by clearing up drive space regularly — there’s no reason to hold on to files and downloads you no longer need! Delete any unnecessary files and consider moving files you wish to keep to an external harddrive.
Remove malware and viruses
Malware can affect operability and cause data loss or theft. There are a number of ways your system can be infected by malware and other viruses. Therefore, it is important that you use antivirus software to protect your computer and remove any potential threats. This software will run diagnostics, identify viruses, and resolve these.
It is important that you install program updates regularly, as to ensure all programs are running efficiently. Failing to install new updates can affect the speed and performance of your programs. Most programs have regular updates that will address security holes and minimize unnecessary features.
At WesTec Services, we believe regular maintenance is crucial for maintaining the health of your system. With regular maintenance, you can prevent the worst from happening — and prevention is key!
Most IT consultants simply put band-aid fixes on computer network problems and react to problems instead of looking for ways to prevent them from happening in the first place. As with most things in life, prevention really is better than cure — and it’s no surprise to find that prevention is the secret of good IT support too. Interested in learning more about our IT services? Contact us today!
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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!
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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 the
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.
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.
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.
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.
As we make new advancements in internet technology, hackers are getting smarter! Therefore, it is crucial that you stay informed on emerging cybersecurity threats. WesTec Services has compiled a list of cybersecurity threats to be aware of:
As remote work has become more popular and necessary as a result of COVID-19, cloud jacking has become more prevalent. Cloud jacking occurs when a hacker gains access to your cloud server. Often, hackers will hijack cloud accounts to steal identities and conduct unauthorized or illegal activities. Cloud jacking should not be taken lightly, especially if you store sensitive, confidential information on your cloud server.
In the past, centralized security measures were enough to protect a network from security breaches. However, the introduction of mobile phones and laptops posed new security threats — and brought awareness to security vulnerabilities (or “endpoints”). Using encryption, endpoint security seals any vulnerabilities in a network’s connection. This additional layer of security protects against threats if an infected device connects to the network. However, with the rise of remote work, we are seeing an increase in endpoint interception, as many are using mobile devices and laptops on networks that are not secure.
Phishing is still alive and well in 2020! Hackers are now targeting small businesses with spam emails. These emails will appear to be from companies that sell a product or service that may be of interest to small businesses — and of course, upon the user clicking a link or downloading a file, their computer has been infected. Furthermore, some emails will provide a link that prompts the user to enter their log-in credentials for a familiar website, while even displaying a reCaptcha security pop-up to appear more credible and secure.
It is important to use the internet with care. Cybersecurity threats can cause a variety of issues for your business, ranging from system failure to productivity loss. At WesTec Services, we believe there is power in educating yourself. As a business owner, you should familiarize yourself with potential threats and educate your employees on internet safety. Have questions about cybersecurity? Contact us today!
You have likely seen the acronym “HTTP” while navigating the internet. HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) appears at the beginning of a web address and supports data transfer between the web browser and website.
You may have also seen the acronym “HTTPS” and wondered, “What’s the difference?” Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) derives from HTTP and is an encrypted security certificate that protects sensitive information in data transfer. HTTP refers to a standard, unencrypted server, while HTTPS indicates a server is secure. HTTPS is a necessary extension if your website requires log-in credentials or the entry of private information. Without HTTPS, hackers can easily extract sensitive information.
As the need for internet security increases, web browsers like Google and Yahoo! take HTTPS quite seriously. If you do not have this security certificate, your website will be flagged “not secure” – and who wants to enter their credit card information on a website that isn’t secure? Don’t fall victim to a security breach. Educate yourself on how HTTPS works and why it’s important:
How It Works
HTTPS simply takes HTTP and adds a layer of SSL protection. SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a connection that encrypts and decrypts a user’s requests and responses. SSL ensures that communication occurring between the user and the website server cannot be read or extracted by hackers.
Why It’s Important
Since its inception, the internet has changed life as we know it. With the introduction of e-commerce, we no longer have to leave our houses to shop for the items we need – we simply fill up our “cart”, enter our credit card information, and wait 5-7 business days for our items to arrive. We no longer have to mail a check or pick up the phone to pay our bills – we can conveniently pay our bills online! When we create a social media account or fill out a job application online, we are surrendering information like our full names, addresses, social security numbers, and more.
Because HTTP websites are more susceptible to hacking, it is imperative that we make the transition to an entirely HTTPS web. We can have peace of mind, knowing that our personal information is safe. Additionally, HTTP does not protect against malware infection. When a website is infected with malware, its users are at risk of being infected as well.
A cybersecurity threat can cause data breach, system failure, and ultimately impact your reputation and productivity as a business. Therefore, it is important that you educate yourself on internet safety. The IT professionals at WesTec Services can answer any questions you may have about cybersecurity. Contact us today!
A security threat of any kind can disrupt productivity and impact business. What precautions are you taking to ensure your company does not fall victim to these disruptions? Here are 3 security solutions you should employ as a business owner:
System failure can occur for a variety of reasons, such as virus infection, human error, and natural disaster. Regardless, system failure occurs without warning and could easily put you out of business if you are not prepared. Therefore, it is crucial you implement some sort of backup and data recovery software to protect your network. If you store important or confidential files on your computers, you simply cannot afford to be without backup and data recovery.
Access Control Systems
Another way to protect your business against security threats would be to implement an access control system. With access control systems, facility owners may install security technology such as ID key entries and finger-printing scanners in order to track who enters the building. This technology can also record the time and date guests arrive and leave.
CCTV or IP Security System
Video surveillance is another great solution for businesses looking to increase security efforts, especially when paired with access control systems. Installing cameras at key entrances and exits will allow a facility owner to better monitor who enters the building. Unlike backup disaster/recovery, access control systems and CCTV protect against external security threats.
Why wait until you need a solution in order to implement preventative measures? Most IT consultants simply react to problems instead of looking for ways to prevent them from happening in the first place. At WesTec Services, we believe prevention is better than a cure; prevention is key to maintaining productivity and cash flow. Protect your assets – call WesTec Services and schedule a meeting with one of our IT professionals to discuss what security solutions are best suited for your business!
While business is driven by technology and the internet, many companies today will deal with their computer network problems and frustrations instead of considering a needed upgrade to a wireless internet network, or WiFi.
If your business is facing network challenges, such as network glitches and breakdowns, or accessing your network from home or on-the-go, it may be time to consider implementing a wireless internet network. Here a few advantages of installing a wireless network for your business:
Wireless internet allow users to access network resources from nearly any convenient location within their primary networking environments, such as a home or office. With the increasing saturation of laptops and smart phones, this is particularly relevant.
Wireless internet networks allow users to access the web even outside of their normal work environment. Most coffee shops or restaurants offer their customers a wireless connection to the internet at little or no cost.
When users can connect to a wireless network, they are able to maintain connectivity to their desired network as they move from place to place. For a business, employees can become more productive because work can be completed from nearly any location.
Wireless networks can serve a suddenly-increased number of users with the existing equipment. On the other hand, in a wired network, additional clients would require additional wiring.
Although cost is difficult to quantify, there is a cost to constant computer glitches. Also, failure to access a wireless network on-the-go can keep projects from meeting their deadlines, ultimately causing company downtime.
If your business is ready to make the switch to wireless internet networking, call the experts at WesTec today, or read more about our network installation services.
Today, when people seek information from the Internet, they want it almost immediately. The frustration and delays of dial-up connectivity to the Internet are ongoing and wear on the patience of many web users. However, the upcoming of broadband has eliminated many of these frustrations.
A good broadband connection to a home or office complex means there’s greater capacity to send and receive data–which is highly important within commercial settings. With broadband, users can access the Internet with ease, browse the web more efficiency and download files faster.
Here are other benefits implementing broadband connection may offer:
• It is persistently ‘on’. With this connectivity, there is no wait-time for dial-up connectivity. Avoiding this down time allows for increased productivity in the workplace.
• It complies with media rich websites. Many websites today are media rich with interactive graphics and audio and video streaming abilities. These website elements were designed to be used via broadband for enhanced website experience.
• Working remotely is an option. With increased attendance flexibility at the office, high speed connectivity allows access to links to internal computers and telephone networks–offering the office facilities in the comfort of a home.
• It offers shared access. With the high-speed connectivity this connectivity offers, the connection can easily be shared amongst several PCs or other devices throughout a home or office. Most routers have wireless connectivity–allowing usage for computers, mobile phones and tablets.
• It is cost-efficient. Because broadband typically is offered at a fixed price, a company can budget effectively for their Internet connectivity–ultimately reducing overall operational costs.
For Houston telecom services, WesTec Services is the company to call. The IT experts at WesTec know the importance of the integral relationship between computers and telecommunications. At WesTec, we are a one-stop-source of all IT needs–guaranteeing high performance business broadband services.
Call our professionals today!