What Is An Andromeda C‑CAT?A C‑CAT (Client-Centric Action Team) is a dedicated team that includes one or more two Remote Service Techs, and one or more IT Field Techs whose activities are curated by a Account Coordinator(AC)—each specifically appointed to service your organization. With cat-like reflexes and precision, your Andromeda C-CAT will pounce on any IT issue, upgrade, or project. It's really the cat's meow for your IT needs!)
Professional IT Services that Andromeda Provides for Hoffman Estates, IL Businesses:
What A Few Of Our Clients Have To Say
Andromeda IT Service Offerings
Here is just a quick list demonstrating the breadth of IT services you can expect from Andromeda:
AndroPedia Tech Library
As part of our service, it is important to keep our client-partners well informed on IT developments, news, and best practices. Here is just a sampling of typical items from our AndroPediaSM library archive:
9 FAQs About Office 365 Nov 04, 2019
When you are trying to decide which programs to purchase for your business, it is important to understand all the benefits of each. Office 365 has so many built in conveniences it is hard to picture any other option coming close.
Here are the 9 most frequently asked questions and answers about Microsoft Office 365 to help you make the best decision for your business:
1. What is the difference between Office 2019 and Office 365?
In Office 365 Business Premium, you get both the cloud and desktop versions of classic Office applications: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher, and Access which will work on various devices (PC, Mac, iOS and Android to name a few). Additional programs/features from applications like OneNote, OneDrive and SharePoint are also included.
Along with new applications, Office 365 allows users to receive the most up to date features and software in “real time”. This means that your cloud applications are updated automatically as Microsoft rolls out updates.
It should be mentioned though, that desktop versions of the O365 suite are updated alongside regular Windows updates. So, those updates occur as your IT team updates your workstations. For Andromeda Managed IT Services clients, this happens weekly.
2. How does live collaboration work in Office 365?
A great productivity boost comes with live collaboration in Office 365. Multiple teammates can open the same document at the same time to work together.
Additionally, you can chat with teammates during editing to keep teammates on the same page. This can be done directly in the documents themselves or using Microsoft’s application Microsoft Teams.
3. Do I need an internet connection to run Office 365?
For Office 365 Business Premium and Enterprise licenses, internet access is required to install and activate all the latest releases of the applications. Once completed, you can download desktop versions of your Office Applications to use both on and offline.
NOTE: The Office 365 Business Essentials subscription includes ONLY cloud–based versions of the Microsoft Office Suite. This subscription does require internet access to use.
4. What security features does Office 365 include?
Office 365 has more than 1,000 security and privacy features available for use. Office 365 offers Advanced Threat Protection to guard your business against some of the sophisticated phishing and ransomware attacks designed to harm your business. Office 365 also includes compliance options/features to help ensure your business meets industry compliance. For more information on specific compliance and security features straight from Microsoft, you can go here.
5. How much OneDrive storage space do I get with my subscription?
By default, 1TB of storage is included with OneDrive. Added storage is available for purchase.
6. Do I have control of my documents with an Office 365 subscription?
Yes. You own and manage all your own documents. You can choose to store them online in OneDrive or locally to your computer or even direct to other Office 365 applications.
If you ever chose to cancel your Office 365 Subscription, make sure to have all staff save any documents in their OneDrive or other applications to a physical drive. You can also purchase OneDrive storage separately, but it is best to consult your IT team on the best solution for your business.
7. Are my documents stored in OneDrive available offline?
Yes. You can access OneDrive files both online and offline. The local offline files will take up some space on your machine but an internet connection is not required. You can also have what is called “on demand” settings enabled that will save certain files locally and others in the cloud as you choose.
If you are working offline, save your changes before exiting your program and OneDrive will update your files in the cloud once you reconnect to the internet.
8. Do the applications work the same on the computer as on my mobile phone?
The answer to this is really a yes and no. Office 365 has desktop, cloud and mobile versions of applications available. They all function the same. Meaning word is still going to create word documents and you will have most functions/features available across all devices.
The difference in functionality comes out in the way you use the applications on different devices. For instance, Word on your mobile device looks slightly different than on desktop, but this is to help with usability.
9. If I need help with my Office 365 set-up, who can I call?
Andromeda Technology Solutions has an entire team of experts in Installing and managing your Office 365 applications and permissions. Give us a call to help with any questions, and we will answer your questions or send out someone to solve your computer issues.
The post 9 FAQs About Office 365 appeared first on Andromeda Technology Solutions.4 Cybersecurity Tips For Business Owners & Managers Jul 08, 2019
New cybersecurity stories hit the news every day. You’ve surely heard about large companies getting hacked or ‘breached’, passwords stolen, identities compromised and more.
The topic of cybersecurity gets brought up so much, it’s no surprise that it has become a kind of background noise in the business world. Warnings about security protocols, new viruses and ransomware scams are just the tip of the iceberg when you look into what is happening in the IT security world.
While the news stories keep coming and businesses continue falling victim, there is at least one thing that remains the same . . . the need for cybersecurity training and awareness is here to stay. If you are in business, you have data that cybercriminals want to steal. Simple as that.
Cybersecurity conversations and solutions don’t have to be daunting though. In fact, there are some quick, common-sense tips you can put into place that will make you and your business a harder target for those looking to do you harm.
Top 4 Cybersecurity Tips For Professionals
1. Use Unique and Strong Passwords For All Online Accounts
This tip is one you’ve surely heard many times before but over 85% of all adults reuse their passwords online. On top of that, most people don’t know how to create a truly strong password. Some characteristics of a strong password are:
- Minimum of 8 characters
- A mixture of uppercase and lowercase letters
- At least one number
- At least one special character (!@#$%^&)
- No personal details (pet names, family member names, birth dates, address info etc.)
The average adult has over 100 different accounts online (bank accounts, credit cards, social media, email, apps etc.). It’s understandably difficult to create and remember a different password for everything you do though.
What to do about it? Look into a password manager tool for yourself and your staff. A password manager will store and organize all of your unique passwords securely. Here at Andromeda, we recommend LastPass. It has some great features and is a trustworthy password management tool. If you have questions about that, feel free to reach our team.
2. Run A Network Security Audit At Least Once A Year
You can’t address things if you don’t know they are broken. An annual network security audit done by a third party IT support partner will give you visibility into the small cracks hiding in your network security.
This type of audit should check things like open ports on your firewall, password protocols, your backups, your disaster recovery plan, the status of your warranties, your antivirus and spam protocols and more.
You can engage your current IT services provider for this audit or look for a third party vendor to come in and take a fresh look at your setup.
It never hurts to get a new set of eyes on your setup. Andromeda provides these types of assessments to our clients with our professional 35 point network security assessment. If you’d like to speak with our team about this service, give us a call at (815) 836-0030 or send an email to Contact@WeNetwork.com
3. Regularly Test Your Backups and Disaster Recovery Plan
One of the top methods a cybercriminal uses to make money is ransomware. Ransomware is classified as a cyberattack where a criminal gains access to your network (through brute force or stolen employee email/passwords). After accessing the network, the criminal then encrypts all or a portion of your business data and locks you out of it. The only way to recover the data is to pay a ransom (often in the form of bitcoin or other cryptocurrency). If you don’t pay up – they destroy your data.
These types of attacks cause serious damage. Businesses lose big money due to down time, reputational damage and in some cases, even government fines (in worst cases where evidence that a business intentionally ignored or neglected their data security, victims of ransomware/cybercrime can even face jail time).
Imagine that, you’re the victim of a cyberattack and you have to pay the government fines on top of it all?!
Ransomware and cyberattacks happen, there is almost no way to avoid them 100% of the time. But, with a proper disaster recovery plan including regular data backups (on site, in the cloud and off site) you can quickly and calmly restore your business data and win against cybercrime.
Don’t just accept anyone’s word when it comes to verifying your backups though. You should be sure that whoever is maintaining your backups and disaster recovery is running regular tests and providing you proof of valid backups. You should also run a demo scenario at least twice a year to test how long it would take you to be back up and running in the event of a breach or equipment failure.
4. Employee Cybersecurity Training Is Key To Your Defense
Cyber security is constantly changing and new attack strategies show up regularly. The one thing that shouldn’t change for you though, is your commitment to ongoing employee training.
After all, the #1 threat to your office network security is actually your employees! The staff are the people who will accidentally visit an infected site, click a bad link, download a file with a virus etc. and the only way to help stop those behaviors/accidents is through education and proper training.
A good employee training program will offer ongoing training and support. It may also score and rank your employees/office based on performance etc.
At Andromeda, we offer our clients an employee cyber security training in an online program. This allows employees to go at their own pace and complete training in the office or on the go. This solution provides weekly tech tips, training videos, micro quizzes, individual employee risk scores and more.
Make sure to look into training if your organization isn’t already offering this to employees. This really is a must have solution to protect your office.
These are only 4 tips you can use to improve security at the office. There are many more but if you cover these bases you have a great start.
If you have any questions related to cybersecurity or IT at the office, give our team a call at (815) 836-0030 or send a message to Contact@WeNetwork.com. We are always here to help you!
The post 4 Cybersecurity Tips For Business Owners & Managers appeared first on Andromeda Technology Solutions.Thanos Ransomware May Get Around Certain Security Systems Jun 22, 2020
In 2019, a new strain of ransomware called Thanos burst onto the scene and has since been spreading quietly and seeing increased adoption by hackers around the world.
The code has been traced to a Russian hacker going by the name Nosophorus, who has been offering the software as 'Ransomeware-as-a-service' on Russian-speaking forums on the Dark Web since February 2020.
The reason for Thanos' increasing popularity is that Nosophorus has monetized its spread, creating an affiliate program that shares revenue from any ransom payments collected. This is only one of a number of interesting and alarming features about the code, however.
Most of the ransomware written in C# isn't very robust or sophisticated. However, Thanos is an exception, sporting a modular design that makes it easy to upgrade or reconfigure based on each hacker's specific needs.
In addition to that, Thanos is the first ransomware strain that makes use of RIPlace anti-ransomware evasion techniques, which makes it notoriously difficult to detect and prevent. The technique was first discovered by a security researcher going by the name of Nyotron. He duly reported it to security companies around the world, only to be told that the technique, while interesting, was purely theoretical and would never be seen in the wild.
Sadly, those predictions have now been proved to be incorrect. Thanos is actively making use of the evasion technology, which leaves security companies scrambling to catch up. Unfortunately, when RIPlace was described to Microsoft, a spokesman for the company had something to say.
"The technique described is not a security vulnerability and does not satisfy our Security Servicing Criteria. Controlled folder access is a defense-in-depth feature and the reported technique requires elevated permissions on the target machine."
Given this and the other advanced features Thanos sports, you can bet that it's going to see increasingly widespread use. Ultimately, this will force big tech firms to take action, but not before the malware has the opportunity to do serious damage. Be on the alert for this one. Thanos is a serious threat.