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 Matteson, 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:
How A Third-Party Data Breach Impacts Cybersecurity At Your Business Aug 05, 2019
With the average American adult maintaining over 130 different accounts online, the risk of a data breach or data being stolen continues to grow. Between social media, financials, productivity applications, email, business applications, online shopping and countless other accounts online, your “online life” becomes more and more a part of your day to day physical life as time passes.
As more of our lives and data are shared online, criminals are focused on breaking into these databases to steal the valuable info they hold:
- Personal Info such as name, address, dates of birth, social security numbers etc.
- Financial information such as bank info, credit cards etc.
- Social Information on social media accounts
This is a real problem facing consumers globally but the impacts span beyond individual damages and stolen identities (though, those damages are bad enough).
When a criminal steals your password, or the password of a coworker, chances are – they’ve gained access to many pieces of your “online life”.
Here’s an example to illustrate how a third party data breach can lead a criminal back to your business.
Your HR manager helps book travel for employees at the business. He set up a business account at a national hotel chain to book rooms for whatever the business travel needs are. The hotel chain’s database suffers a breach and cybercriminals steal thousands of email/password combos including your HR manager’s credentials.
Your HR manager used the same password he uses for all kinds of sites online when he created the login at the hotel company site. This means that the criminals who have this breached data, now have access to your payroll software, servers and all the other things your HR manager interacts with.
The criminals either use this data themselves or take it to the Dark Web to sell for a few dollars (password/email combinations go for $3-$5 on average on the Dark Web).
Breaches like these happen daily and criminals use the information they steal to do as much damage as they can.
This creates a unique problem for business owners and managers because what can you possibly do to protect yourself from a data breach happening at a hotel chain or some other account online?
Things get even trickier when the average span of time between a data breach and disclosure to the public reaches 15 months. Meaning, criminals have a 15-month head start to get to your business and do damage before your are notified on the 5 o’clock news or your social media feed.
So, how can you defend against this kind of thing?
First, implement a password policy at your business:
- Strong Passwords Required
- Change Passwords Regularly (90 days minimum)
- Dual Authentication
- Lockout Procedures
Second, roll out a password management tool across your organization.
As mentioned earlier, the average adult in America manages over 130 accounts online. It is no wonder that we have a hard time creating strong and unique passwords for each of those accounts. It would be nearly impossible to remember all of that without writing things down – which isn’t secure.
To bridge the gap between security and memory, implement a password management tool. Look for something that is encrypted, secure and be sure to consider mobile capabilities. We recommend LastPass as a great option to start.
Third, invest in Dark Web Monitoring
Dark Web Monitoring is still a newer service offered to businesses and professionals. This is a monitoring solution designed to scrub different areas of the Dark Web (chatrooms, discussion boards etc.) for data connected to your domain.
If we apply Dark Web Monitoring to the example above with the HR Manager for instance – when the criminals stole data from the hotel chain and went to sell/share it on the Dark Web, the monitoring tool would identify your IT company to have the HR manager change passwords. That way, the criminals have useless data and you are protected well before you learn about the breach 15 months later.
The post How A Third-Party Data Breach Impacts Cybersecurity At Your Business appeared first on Andromeda Technology Solutions.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.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.