Beware when connecting to Wi-Fi

At E3 (an annual technology conference) this year, a new video game was showcased. Watch Dogs, set in the near future, is a game about an elite hacker who can hack into any device as long as it has a Wi-Fi connection. In the short demo, you see the character listen in on private conversations, hack streetlights to create havoc and steal a person’s information. While this is only a video game, it’s based on what one can currently do with and to Wi-Fi devices, many of which you probably utilize when you’re out of the office.

It’s a good idea to connect to public networks that require passwords when possible, as they tend to be more secure. Many public networks have a legal disclaimer stating network use and security. It pays to read these before connecting.

Turn Wi-Fi off
We don’t mean you should turn your Wi-Fi off permanently, rather, when you’re not using your device, or are connected to another network, e.g., mobile data, turn your Wi-Fi connection off. If you have Wi-Fi on while connected to another network, your device can and will actively search for networks to connect to and often connect to an unsecure network, unintentionally exposing your information.

Use HTTPS when possible
HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol with Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). In layman’s terms this is a website that has been built with security of user’s data in mind. Many popular websites have a HTTPS version that can be accessed by typing in Using HTTPS makes websites a lot harder to hack, and it’s a good idea to get into the habit of using them when on a public network or connected to Wi-Fi outside of the office.

Use data not public hotspots
Hotspots are public Wi-Fi connections usually provided by a company e.g., many coffee shops have Wi-Fi, this is a hotspot. These can be unsafe, so it’s much better to invest in a data connection for your device, or a mobile Internet stick, which are considerably safer as the data is encrypted before it’s transferred from the cell tower to your device.

Use a VPN
A Virtual Private Network – VPN – connects multiple computers in different locations to the same network via the Internet. Many companies use this to connect and share data with satellite offices, as the data is encrypted and secure. The main benefit to VPNs is that you can connect to a public Wi-Fi network, and transfer data securely using the network’s bandwidth. Many businesses use some form of VPN, which makes it easy for you to keep your business data secure while out of the office.

There are also VPNs that allow you to securely access the Internet via a public Wi-Fi connection, while encrypting all data sent and making your computer anonymous. It’s recommended that if you’re out of the office a lot, to look into a VPN and follow these other tips. If you’re interested, we may have a solution for you, so please contact us.

5 ways to keep employees healthy

It’s common knowledge that the number of work related injuries is rising. While many traditional injuries happen while working high risk jobs, the majority of injuries are now happening to employees who sit for long periods of time. As many employees sit at a computer for a long period of time, they are at risk. Let’s face it, healthy employees are better for your business.


Modernize POS with iPad and app

One of the most common elements of small businesses is the point of sale system. Many businesses use the traditional setup of a cash register, cash drawer, printer and inventory management system. These systems have historically been the last to be upgraded. There’s a new app for the iPad however that’s out the change this.


Three easy ways to backup Android tablet

Android tablets have come a long way in a relatively short period of time, and many small businesses have taken to integrating them into their daily operations. Like any technical device, there is a chance a tablet will fail and you’ll lose the applications, settings and other data stored on the tablet. To minimize the loss, it’s important you back it up.


Wow them with headings and TOC

In business, a properly formatted document can go a long ways in showcasing how professional your company is, and often times, is the the main way to set your company apart from other competing entities. If you have a longer document, say a proposal, you’re going to need a Table of Contents (TOC). Instead of struggling to make your own, you can use stylized headings and have Word create one with two clicks of a mouse.