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Leasing vs. Financing IT Equipment

Internet Security in Education: 3 Laws that Protect Students and Their Information

What is 5G?

Top 3 Cybersecurity Threats Businesses Have Faced in 2020

Advantages of Wireless Internet for Business

Your Business Needs a Guest Wifi Account

Broadband Connectivity: The Long-Lasting Benefits for Businesses

Why businesses need web monitoring

IT security policies your company needs

How to boost your mobile hotspot

Posts Tagged ‘internet’

Leasing vs. Financing IT Equipment

 

IT equipment is essential for businesses in 2021. The main question is — leasing vs financing IT equipment? There are pros and cons for both options, but it depends on the kind of working environment, efficiency requirements, and budget. 

Leasing 

One of the greatest advantages of leasing is not being financially responsible for the equipment. Rather than having your company held responsible, you would be passing the financials to the leasing company. Instead of paying up front for the equipment needed, leasing allows you to set a monthly payment. A lease is also an option that will guarantee the same equipment with fixed monthly payments. 

Financials aside, leasing provides access to the newest, up-to-date equipment. Once your equipment has run its course, you can easily upgrade. Newer equipment requires less maintenance, which allows for greater productivity. 

However, there are some disadvantages to leasing IT equipment. Depending on your leasing terms and IT needs, leasing can be more expensive than financing — especially if you sign a lease and don’t end up using the equipment, as you are still obligated to pay. 

Financing

If leasing isn’t for you, you also have the option to finance. When financing, there are no contracts involved — you simply buy the equipment directly from the source. If maintenance is required, financing allows you to go about it at your own discretion. You won’t need to make an appointment with the leasing company or be stuck with damaged equipment. When you own the equipment, you can simply take care of everything on your own. 

For businesses on a tight budget, financing is the more cost-effective option. With one simple payment, the equipment is yours! 

However, there are a few downsides when it comes to financing. Depending on the business, making a big investment like this could max out your credit lines. Furthermore, you could be stuck with outdated equipment, whereas in leasing, updated equipment is always available. 

The Final Decision 

Between financing and leasing IT equipment, both have their pros and cons. However, it is up to you to decide which option is most cost-efficient, given your budget and IT needs. For the most advanced models that don’t require one big payment, leasing would be the best option. For a one-time payment and maintenance freedom, the best option would be financing. 

 

  Not sure whether to finance or lease IT equipment? We can help!    Feel free to give us a call or visit our website

Internet Security in Education: 3 Laws that Protect Students and Their Information

In the era of technology, some have concerns about their privacy. In schools, the top priority is to protect students and their information. With students constantly engaging in technology, whether it be submitting homework, emails with teachers, or saving documents, state and federal internet security laws protect all this information. 

 

 

FERPA: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act 

FERPA: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act is one of the most widely known federal laws regarding student privacy. It applies to every educational institution or those of a similar rank. This law protects the education records of all students and sets boundaries between what information students’ parents have access to when the student becomes 18 years of age. If educational records are needed by another school, parent, or in medical cases, there must be a written permission letter from the student or guardian to release that information. Details such as name, birthdate, phone number and school attendance is not under this law and does not require a written permission. 

 

COPPA: Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act

Different from FERPA, COPPA: Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act is specific to the online services used by children 13 years and younger. This act controls what personal information is collected from young children. Applications and websites all have to abide by this act and schools can intervene as parental consent if needed. 

 

CIPA: Children’s Internet Protection Act 

In addition to protecting the privacy of students, it prevents them from seeing unwanted information while on the internet. CIPA: Children’s Internet Protection Act uses a filtered web system that schools and libraries use. This system blocks and hides harmful information or acts such as chat rooms and cyberbullying. CIPA also sets a curriculum on how to protect minors on the internet. This curriculum is required to use this program. Schools and libraries must implement these guidelines addressing a new internet safety policy. 

 

These three acts and laws are a preventative measure from harmful internet activities and exploitation. With the main goal of protecting students’ privacy and engaging them in new internet safety protocols these acts are required by law. 

 

Technology can be confusing, and it’s important to know your rights! Have any further questions on internet privacy? Contact WesTec today! And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn

What is 5G? - WesTec Services

What is 5G?

The world of technology is constantly evolving and presenting new ideas that promise ease, reliability, and productivity. 5G is one of these innovations and is not falling short of its promises. 

5G has revolutionized telecommunications as we know it. You’ve probably heard of 5G, but what is it and why do we need it? Here’s everything you need to know:

 

What is it?

5G is the fifth-generation mobile network that creates an Internet of Things (IoT) by connecting everything, including machines, objects, and devices. 5G boasts better data speeds, greater network capacity, and lower latency — ultimately creating an enhanced mobile broadband and improving user experience.

With these new, more reliable capabilities, this network has opened the door to new possibilities for industries across the board. For instance, 5G has made remote healthcare possible; this was especially groundbreaking for the healthcare industry in the midst of the recent global pandemic.

 

The Benefits  

The perceived benefits of 5G surpass those of its predecessors. With its ability to support a wide range of industries, we can expect to see massive economic growth. According to QualComm, it is projected that this network will enable a $13.1 trillion flow of goods and services by 2035. Additionally, with all the new, emerging applications, this network has the opportunity to create 22.8 million new jobs.

With lower latency, industries like agriculture, manufacturing, and logistics will experience less wait time before completing a data transfer — less wait time means increased productivity! Furthermore, with its enhanced network capacity, 5G enables businesses everywhere to scale their technology.

For gamers, the higher speeds and minimal lag will improve the gaming experience. We can also expect virtual reality and augmented reality applications to become more popular, as the improved connectivity will allow for a more immersive experience.

 

5G was introduced in late 2019, so its availability is still somewhat limited in the United States. Want to stay up-to-date on all things 5G? Visit our blog for updates as we receive them.

Interested in learning more about the services we offer? Visit our website or contact WesTec Services today!

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

Top 3 Cybersecurity Threats Businesses Have Faced in 2020 - WesTec Services

Top 3 Cybersecurity Threats Businesses Have Faced in 2020

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:

 

Cloud Jacking

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.

 

Endpoints 

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

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!

Advantages of Wireless Internet for Business - WesTec Services

Advantages of Wireless Internet for 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:

Convenience

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.

Mobility

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.

Productivity

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.

Expandability

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.

Cost

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.
Your Business Needs a Guest Wi-Fi Network

Your Business Needs a Guest Wifi Account

Places of business who have frequent visitors can benefit from having an additional WiFi network for guests. With a guest Wifi network, temporary visitors enjoy full internet connectivity without being able to access sensitive internal network information. Continue reading to find out how both your business and customers can benefit from a guest wifi account.

Security and Privacy

By reserving a section of your WiFi for guests, you protect your company’s data. This allows you to control who has access to the network of computers, servers and printers. Giving guests their own WiFi account also limits the ability of viruses and malware to infect your server.

Changeable Passwords

Offering a guest network allows you to keep your primary password a secret. Guest passwords are also cached differently, meaning guests do not have permanent access to your network. 

Two individuals in a waiting room using guest WiFiAccess and Parental Controls

A guest WiFi account allows you to set different levels of access. With a guest network, you can also implement parental controls to limit the types of sites your customers can visit, providing added security to your business.  

Network Usage Controls

Guest networks can limit the amount of data your customers can use. By regulating the bandwidth of your guests’ WiFi network, you can limit the speed of customer internet access. This means their network usage will not affect the business network and employee efficiency. The experts at WesTec are ready to answer any questions you may have about installing a guest WiFi network at your place of business. Contact us today for more information.
Benefits of Broadband-WesTec Services

Broadband Connectivity: The Long-Lasting Benefits for Businesses

Benefits of Broadband-WesTec ServicesToday, 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. Benefits of Broadband-WesTec Services

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!

Why businesses need web monitoring

Why businesses need web monitoring

July 31st, 2018
Why businesses need web monitoring

The internet is indispensable for improving business productivity, but it’s also an outlet for procrastination. With unfettered access to the internet, it’s easy to stray away from your important work responsibilities. Fortunately, web monitoring can ensure your employees don’t overuse non-work-related sites.

Time-saving measures

Internet monitoring software saves employees from visiting entertainment, gaming, or online shopping sites by restricting access to them. Internet monitoring software doesn’t necessarily block access to social media sites, but it lets your employees know that you’re monitoring their internet activity. This is aimed at discouraging them from taking prolonged visits to their Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page.

Avoid harmful websites

The internet hosts plenty of unsavory links and websites. Employees who haphazardly click phishing links or access malware-ridden pornography sites can put your business at risk. Working with infected machines can slow down the entire system and, in some cases, completely halt operations. By using internet monitoring tools, you can restrict access to dangerous websites and identify reckless employees who access them and remove their internet privileges, if necessary.

Control bandwidth usage

Even while using the internet for the right purposes, bandwidth can be used up quickly. Internet monitoring gives you up-to-the-minute reports on staff’s bandwidth usage. Once you have a clear understanding of your company’s overall bandwidth usage, you can better control internet expenditure. Ultimately, this feature allows you to prioritize bandwidth for critical business applications and reduce bandwidth for less necessary websites.

Increase productivity on the internet

Internet monitoring software may be a powerful tool, but it should be used responsibly. As a business owner, you need to walk a fine line between over-surveillance and under-surveillance. What you should do is establish a clear internet policy, which should explicitly define the disciplinary measures to be dispensed on anybody who goes against the company’s internet policy. You should also deal with time-wasting employees on a case-by-case basis because it’s unreasonable to remove everyone’s Facebook privileges because one or two abused theirs.

Employee productivity can be difficult to achieve, especially with the proliferation of the so-called “procrastination software.” But with web monitoring software, you can truly get your business — and your employees — back on track. Looking for more ways to increase business productivity with technology? Give us a call. We’ll be happy to make suggestions.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

IT security policies your company needs

IT security policies your company needs

July 23rd, 2018
IT security policies your company needs

When it comes to Internet security, most small businesses don’t have security policies in place. And considering that employee error is one of the most common causes of a security breach, it makes sense to implement rules your staff needs to follow. Here are four things your IT policies should cover.

Internet

In today’s business world, employees spend a lot of time on the internet. To ensure they’re not putting your business at risk, you need a clear set of web policies. This must limit internet use for business purposes only, prohibit unauthorized downloads, and restrict access to personal emails on company devices. You can also include recommended browsing practices and policies for using business devices on public wifi.

Email

Just like the Internet policy mentioned above, company email accounts should only be utilized for business use. That means your employees should never use it to send personal files, forward links, or perform any type of business-related activities outside their specific job role. Additionally, consider implementing a standard email signature for all employees. This not only creates brand cohesion on all outgoing emails, but also makes it easy to identify messages from other employees, thus preventing spear phishing.

Passwords

We’ve all heard the importance of a strong password time and time again. And this same principle should also apply to your employees. The reason is rather simple. Many employees will create the easiest to crack passwords for their business accounts. After all, if your organization gets hacked, it’s not their money or business at stake. So to encourage employees to create strong passwords, your policy should instruct them to include special characters, uppercase and lowercase letters, and numbers in their passwords.

Data

Whether or not you allow your employees to conduct work on their own devices, such as a smartphone or tablet, it is important to have a bring your own device (BYOD) policy. If your employees aren’t aware of your stance on BYOD, some are sure to assume they can conduct work-related tasks on their personal laptop or tablet. So have a BYOD policy and put it in the employee handbook. In addition to this, make sure to explain that data on any workstation is business property. This means employees aren’t allowed to remove or copy it without your authorization.

We hope these four policies shed some light on the industry’s best security practices. If you’d like more tips or are interested in a security audit of your business, give us a call.

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.

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