The ability to connect to the Internet anywhere and at any time has made a business Wi-Fi network a necessity for most organizations. With benefits ranging from increased productivity to improved customer satisfaction, implementing a wireless network for your employees and guests is no longer just an option. It’s pretty simple to enable Wi-Fi, just walk into any retail store or office lobby and you’ll find a long list of available connections. However, keeping the network secure is the real challenge.
On December 14, 2017, the FCC voted to repeal net neutrality rules in a 3-2 vote along party lines and signaling a victory for telecommunications companies, according to the Los Angeles Times. Now lawmakers are fighting back and in mid-January, CNET reported that Democrats announced all 49 of their senators, and one Republican, Susan Collins of Maine, will vote on a bill that uses the Congressional Review Act to reinstate the regulation.
Change is scary, especially when it pertains to your business. You’ve made the important decision to implement a cloud-based technology solution, but now things seem complicated. How will all the files and emails be accessed? How much down time is expected? What if current applications don’t work properly?
The cloud, when implemented properly, makes everyone’s life easier. But if you rush through the process, or skip any of the 5 vital steps listed below, it can make your work environment cumbersome, and reduce the impact of your exciting investment.
Here are 5 ways to simplify your cloud usability:
E-Rate Helps Schools Become More Wi-Fi-Centric with New Funding Announcement: DiamondIT Helps Schools in Kern County Improve Broadband Capabilities
Two years ago, a major technology funding announcement for $2-billion was released to much media fanfare: The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to improve the 20-year old E-Rate program with a large influx of funds. Excited by the progress since that 2014 announcement, the FCC recently announced they have voted to increase the E-Rate budget to US$1.5 billion, annually, to improve Wi-Fi networks at schools and libraries across the country.
The Dangers of Pokémon Go: How Businesses Can Prevent the Popular Game from Becoming a Cybersecurity Threat
Unless you have been living under a rock you’ll have heard of the latest craze ‘Pokémon Go’. It is an “augmented reality” game for smartphones that’s based on Japan’s 1990’s Pokémon franchise, which allows users to physically go out and ‘catch’ their own Pokémon using their phone.
The game has become a sensation seemingly overnight and latest figures show user numbers are up to 20-25 million per day, according to Venturebeat Magazine. While the game is still not available in some countries like Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, the response world-wide has been spectacular – attracting both the young and the young at heart.
Pokémon Go is heralding in a new era for Nintendo and Niantic – breathing life into the franchise that might have seemed dated just a few months prior. But the game has also been the subject of some alarming headlines including reports of players being mugged as well as some Pokémon enthusiasts causing a public nuisance. Adding fuel to fire, there are also reports of viruses being found in fake copies of the Pokémon Go application.
Beyond the more sensational headlines (which one hopes will be few and far in between), Pokémon Go is now raising network security concerns in the business world. The implication is that the game, once downloaded on mobile devices that hold sensitive/confidential business information, could pose a compelling security risk.
It’s been said that an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. But one-for-one isn’t always bad. In schools, for example, one-to-one funding brings a laptop into each student’s home. Rather than blinding them, it opens their eyes to the World Wide Web and its educational opportunities.
Students also bring their laptops into classrooms, which can cause quite a burden on your school’s internet bandwidth. This – coupled with an increasing bring-your-own-device (BYOD) culture as teachers and students also bring their smart phones and tablets – subject schools to ever-greater connectivity requirements. Of course, schools also face funding challenges that can impair their ability to purchase new equipment and upgrades on a regular basis. So when a school does upgrade its technology, it must be able to last.
The migration of schools to voice-over-internet-protocol (VoIP) phone systems has been a long time coming. Legacy phone systems have been a money sink for long enough that school districts across California are leaving these sunk costs for technologies that will start saving them money. To further contribute to this, the FCC recently changed the E-rate funding system. While schools used to get discounts on their phone and voice systems, discounts on telecommunications technologies are now getting phased out. In lieu of depending on these telecom companies, it’s making more sense from a budget perspective to have your own premise-based VoIP setup. These changes fall in line with modified requirements for emergency notifications, for which VoIP is the ideal technology.
In the list of phrases that evoke trust, where does “limited warranty” fall? It’s right there with “I’ll get to it soon” and “gently used.” Some businesses only support you after you’ve invested a lot of money and even then only under certain circumstances.
We have a client who had seen plenty of limited warranties in previous IT purchases and had come to us to get an assessment of their network. That same week, this hospital had their primary domain controller server crash, which can be devastating when medical records are on the line. DiamondIT was there at all hours of the night to get them back up and running. We even loaned them equipment to tide them over.
Upgrading Network Security Systems to Protect California Hospitals From Confidentiality Lawsuits in 2016
The long reach of litigation has grabbed onto every element of the healthcare industry, creating something of an arms race between prosecutors and hospital administrations. As technologies, such as electronic health records, keep growing and moving, new issues can be unveiled and exploited. Patient confidentiality, for example, has become significantly more complicated to protect than it was 20 years ago. That doesn’t change the fact that federal and California law allows patients to sue doctors and hospitals for failing to take reasonable measures to protect their confidential information. This means it’s more important than ever before for healthcare facilities in California and throughout the nation to implement security systems that protect their patients’ information.
As the iPhone approaches its 10th birthday, it’s amazing to consider how mobile Internet access has changed our society, especially in service industries. Today’s wireless technologies allow for fast and lightweight communication, which can be used in a multitude of ways to deliver the kind of superior customer service that results in top reviews and improved revenues for hotels and resorts. For instance, outdoor WiFi is practically required at luxury hotels now – especially if guest housing is set up bungalow-style or in separate apartments within the property.
But, you ask, isn’t the point of most hotel stays to kick back, relax, and unplug? Here at DiamondIT, we’ve worked with clients who are trying to find that fine balance between providing the relaxing experience their guests are seeking and offering the IT capabilities that many need to function in today’s society. Thankfully, there are impressive new opportunities to mix modern technology with traditional leisure, but it’s important to implement the right security measures to ensure you’re only helping – not hurting – your business.