Have You Completed These Malware Survival Tasks?

Ransomware shows no signs of slowing down. Attacks continue to grow, both in sheer numbers and in sophistication, as the IT world struggles to catch up. Despite the frightening statistics, and scary stories, there are some things you can do to lessen the likelihood of malware attack or limiting the damage.

Tighten Everything Up

At the heart of ransomware is software that you don’t want, getting launched into your IT environment. The attack point could be an edge device on your networks, such as a firewall, or anything that has an IP address. Make sure these devices have as few open ports as necessary for your business to function and make sure the operating system on each device is up to date. Finally, conduct a vulnerability test anytime you update or introduce a new device. Malware also often comes in through users’ workstations – use group policies to limit the workstations’ ability to download or run unapproved programs.

Smarten Everybody Up

Despite stories of skilled hackers punching their way through high-end firewalls, most ransomware is still launched by users who failed to recognize suspicious emails or websites. Educate your network users (many of whom may not be very tech-minded) on how to recognize suspicious emails and links. Help them develop better IT habits, and help them learn to think before opening attachments, clicking links in emails or indiscriminately visiting links from a Google search.

Back Everything Up

When something bad happens, there’s a sense of “I wish that hadn’t happened!” With a good image and data backup scheme, you can roll back an infected machine to a state prior to the infection. In many (if not most cases), this is quicker and easier than removing malware from a machine. Instead, you can restore to a point in time before the infection occurred. The notion of backup data is nothing new — businesses have been doing it for decades. With help from cloud technology, and other storage devices, recovery has become easier than ever, and the costs have come down, substantially.

You have a business to run – you can’t live in fear. Respect the dangers, and take sensible steps to mitigate them, and you will have a leg up on your competition. Clare Computer Solutions has been helping companies minimize their risk of cyber-threats for years – we can help you, too! Contact us to begin the conversation on protecting your business.

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Learn more about ransomware from this video.

Three Reasons Why You Should Migrate to Office 365

Six years ago Microsoft adapted their enormously popular Office productivity suite to meet the needs of an always connected, mobile workforce. Not only has Office 365 become the standard in enabling and increasing business productivity, but Microsoft continues to add applications to the Office 365 suites to build even greater value at a low monthly cost. The cloud is finally here to stay, and Office 365 can help your company take advantage of the benefits.

Here are three reasons to look at switching to Office 365:

Reason #1: Work Anywhere, From Any Device

Mobility is important to workers these days, and Office 365 makes it easy. First of all, the licensing allows each user to use the product from up to five devices – perfect for the modern mobile worker. Secondly, cloud storage ensures that the work they do is always saved and available – in its most current state – the next time they access it.

Reason #2: Office 365 Scales With Your Business

Cloud services are easily scalable – add more storage if you need it, add more user licenses quickly (Clare Computer Solutions, as a Microsoft Cloud Solutions Provider, can help with this!), and even change the specific SKUs for users if their needs change. This scalability and flexibility translates to higher productivity and increased agility for your business.

Reason #3: You’re Always Up-to-Date in the Cloud

Remember the disruption any time a new Office suite became available, and you had to upgrade all your users? With Office 365, everyone always has the latest version of Office productivity applications.  Similarly, you don’t have to maintain or update a mail server either – it’s always up to date in the cloud.

Speaking of being up-to-date, Microsoft is constantly updating the available feature set in Office 365 now includes – Yammer, Delve, Teams, Skype – there’s an ever-growing list of tools you can use to facilitate better production, communication, and collaboration within your company.

Moving an important part of your business to cloud-based model is a big decision. Clare Computer Solutions has helped businesses just like yours make the right decision – we can help your business too. Contact us today to begin the discussion.