We Define IT Blogs

We Define IT Consulting has been serving the Brooklyn, Northwestern PA, Western and Central New York area since 2007, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Ransomware is Only Getting Worse in 2022… So What Can You Do?

Ransomware is Only Getting Worse in 2022… So What Can You Do?

Ransomware has been commonplace for years, with no sign of it going anywhere anytime soon. Let’s take a few moments to examine the state of ransomware right now, and review how to keep it from impacting your businesses.

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Encryption: What It Is, and How It Works

Encryption: What It Is, and How It Works

Keeping your data protected is a huge concern nowadays, with more and more safeguards needed to prevent it from being exfiltrated. Encryption is a great way to prevent your data from being any good to those who might steal it. Let’s review what encryption is, and delve into how it works in practice.

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So, Your Data Was Breached… What Do You Do Now?

So, Your Data Was Breached… What Do You Do Now?

Data breaches are an unfortunate reality in this day and age, even during the holiday season. While it is important to do everything you can to prevent these kinds of disasters, you need to be prepared to deal with it—both in terms of your operations, and in terms of communicating with your clientele.

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Enhancing the Customer Experience with the Right IT

Enhancing the Customer Experience with the Right IT

Whether you refer to them as clients or customers, the people who act as patrons to your business are essential to its success and survival. This means that you need to keep them as happy as possible. While there are many aspects of maintaining a high level of customer service, we wanted to take a bit of time to examine how deploying the right technology can assist your business in doing just that.

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If Your Google Drive Links Stop Working, It Might Be Due to an Update

If Your Google Drive Links Stop Working, It Might Be Due to an Update

While we cannot express how important it is to update your software and hardware in a timely manner, it is important to keep in mind that some of these updates aren’t going to be perfect. An upcoming update to Google Workspace serves as the perfect example, as the company has recently released an alert to inform users about an issue affecting Google Drive.

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Fast Food Data Breach is Another in Line of Major Cyberattacks

Fast Food Data Breach is Another in Line of Major Cyberattacks

It seems that the last few months have been filled with major cyberattacks, particularly those taking advantage of major businesses that might not initially be considered targets for these kinds of acts. For instance, McDonald’s Restaurants was recently breached. Let’s examine the situation, and how it plays into the recent trends we’ve witnessed. 

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Understanding the Different Kinds of Blockchain and Their Purpose

Understanding the Different Kinds of Blockchain and Their Purpose

The blockchain has made quite a splash, beginning as the technology that powers Bitcoin before branching out into different use cases that many businesses are already taking advantage of. Let’s go over the benefits—and shortcomings—of the various varieties that blockchain now comes in, and how they are commonly used.

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Maps May Soon Be Less Trustworthy Than Ever

Maps May Soon Be Less Trustworthy Than Ever

Did you know that maps as we know them are remarkably skewed? Due to some centuries-old superiority complexes and prejudices, the maps we’ve all been raised looking at have never been completely accurate. However, this problem could soon be an element of cybercrime thanks to a developing technology that many have yet to take seriously, deepfake images, and how they could revolutionize cyberattacks moving forward.

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Tip of the Week: Three Steps to Better Backups

Tip of the Week: Three Steps to Better Backups

Because of the protection it can offer your organization, data backup is a necessary tool for you to have—that is, provided it has the requisite security and reliability you’ll need should you ever have to lean on it. Let’s go over a few guidelines to help you be sure that your backup is trustworthy enough to stake your business’ future on.

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What We Can Learn from Coca-Cola’s Insider Trade Secret Theft

What We Can Learn from Coca-Cola’s Insider Trade Secret Theft

Your business’ data is perhaps its most crucial resource—which is why it is so important that it remains protected against all threats (including those that come from within your own business). Consider, for a moment, the ongoing trial of Xiaorong You, going on in Greenville, Tennessee. Accused of stealing trade secrets and committing economic espionage, You allegedly stole various BPA-free technologies from various companies—including Coca-Cola and the Eastman Chemical Company, amongst others—to the tune of $119.6 million.

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Facebook’s Massive Data Leak

Facebook’s Massive Data Leak

Facebook is many people’s favorite—or at least most used—app and it does bring value to people by letting them keep tabs on friends and family, or grow their businesses. It has grown to be one of the largest, most successful software technology companies in the world. Unfortunately, with that type of exposure comes the responsibility of securing massive amounts of personal data. In this quest, they leave a lot to be decided. Today, we take a look at the situation Facebook is in as they are dealing with one of the largest data leaks in history.

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What Your Employees Need to Know to Keep Their Own Data Secure, Too

What Your Employees Need to Know to Keep Their Own Data Secure, Too

It is only too common for people to have very different personalities in the office as they do during their off hours, with different standards and practices to suit them. While there is absolutely nothing wrong with that on the surface, you need to be sure that they are at least upholding the kind of security best practices that you expect of them in the office while they are at home.

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Three Seldom-Considered Elements of a Backup Strategy

Three Seldom-Considered Elements of a Backup Strategy

If you’ve been following us for any amount of time, it is very likely that you have already heard us talk about the importance of a comprehensive data backup strategy. Recent events have made such preparations no less important for you to have in place. Let’s go over some of the key steps that you need to undergo.

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What Would Happen if All Data Was Publically Available?

What Would Happen if All Data Was Publically Available?

What if I were to tell you that, by the time you finished reading this sentence, all personal data in existence was exposed? If every text sent, every Google search executed, every website visited, everything we had ever done online, was made public? Gizmodo recently reached out to an assortment of experts for their insights. Here, we’ve assembled their responses for you to consider.

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Considering Point of Sale Technology

Considering Point of Sale Technology

Point of sale software and solutions have long offered massive benefits to businesses, with these benefits growing as the technology has advanced. Let’s look at how the POS system has developed over the years to offer the business utilities and benefits that it does today.

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Reopen Your Business with Confidence

Reopen Your Business with Confidence

As the COVID-19 pandemic rolls on, many businesses continue to operate remotely with an eye toward reopening their office soon. Today, we thought it would be a perfect time to go over a couple of things that small business owners will need to address as people begin coming back into the workplace. 

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What We Can Learn from the 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report

What We Can Learn from the 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report

Starting in 2008, Verizon has produced a report outlining the cybersecurity incident trends that the previous year demonstrated. In doing so, they have provided a resource that gives businesses greater insights into where their cybersecurity efforts need to be focused. Let’s go over some of 2019’s trends and insights that were highlighted in the Verizon Business 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR).

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What Is a Data Lake?

What Is a Data Lake?

Big data, or massive data sets that can be used to make inferences and reveal patterns, has become an increasingly important part of modern business and can be leveraged in many different ways. There are a few different options for storing this data available, which the use case for the data will dictate. Here, we’ll evaluate whether a “data lake” or a “data warehouse” would better suit your needs.

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The Security Questions Surrounding Cloud Solutions

The Security Questions Surrounding Cloud Solutions

All types of businesses use cloud resources as a part of their IT infrastructure. It allows them to turn what was once a major capital expenditure into a controllable operating cost; and, it does it while offering solutions to almost any business problem. The one drawback that most IT professionals agree on is how to gain enough control over a cloud platform to ensure that the platform is secure. 

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Is Data a Commodity? Maybe Not, but It Is an Asset

Is Data a Commodity? Maybe Not, but It Is an Asset

The late American author Kurt Vonnegut once wrote, “New knowledge is the most valuable commodity on earth. The more truth we have to work with, the richer we become.” Written in the 20th century, it has been put in practice by 21st century businesses. As the Internet has grown, the amount of companies expanded, and the amount of data that those companies collect has grown exponentially, especially now that there is a market for such data.

Today, many of the largest and most lucrative companies in the world, Google, Apple, AT&T, Amazon, Verizon, Facebook and Microsoft are all, more than manufacturers of computer-based goods and services, data brokers. These data brokers create services that they then sell to advertisers that allow them to target you based on the information these companies have of you, which can accurately tell how and what to sell you.

Since nearly everyone has a near-ubiquitously-connected experience there is a lot of data collected, bought, and sold every year and it’s big business. Facebook, a company whose main revenue stream is from selling advertising, made a net profit of nearly $16 billion in 2017. This tells us that if you have people’s data, you have people’s hopes, fears, and dreams, which means you can pretty easily get someone to pay you for access to that information.

For small businesses it’s much less lucrative. In fact, all the data your organization needs to keep, is probably necessary to simply do business, not to sell to advertisers. Facebook voluntarily gets a lot of personal information from every one of their users, as where the typical small business often has to strategize to just get a name and a phone number. The information that is sensitive (mostly customer information that you collect) has a lot of value to the people looking to steal it. So while you aren’t making billions of dollars selling consumer profiles, it is still a mightily important part of doing business, and needs to be secured.

Is Data a Commodity?
Technically speaking, it isn’t. Since a commodity’s value is based namely on its scarcity and the amount of capital that needs to be put up to create it, in both resources and labor, the data that is being purchased isn’t really a commodity. In lieu of the dissolution of the U.S. Net Neutrality laws, this has created the argument in the U.S. that since now it’s up to the telecommunication companies how they want to manage (or more accurately bill) data consumption, that they would throttle and tier service, something that isn’t possible with a true commodity, where there are laws prohibiting those types of practices.

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