May 13, 2019

Google Cloud's High-Speed Network (Infographic)

Have you ever wondered what's under the hood of Google's High Speed Cloud Network? Well the wait is over, because Google has released a pretty interesting infographic showing us all how it works.

Via Google's Cloud Team's Email:

When your data and users live across oceans, you need more than a fast ship to connect them. Google Cloud's high-speed network has points of presence in over 35 countries, with environmentally friendly solutions that offer you the speed and bandwidth you need.
Click image for full size PDF version


Pretty impressive isn't it? Let us know what you think about it in the comments!

Apr 29, 2019

How to Deleted Online Social Media Accounts No Longer In Use

Protecting your identity online is essential for your brand, reputation and credit worthiness, far more important than updating your Instagram and Facebook every day. Several times a year the news will cover a serious data breach of information being held by major banks, insurance companies and/or social media platforms. Once the data is taken, it can be misused or even lead to identity theft. Deleting your old social media accounts is a vital step to help ensure some measure of identity protection. It is imperative that you keep your online access to your current accounts safe and protected and delete any old accounts.

Here is a guide that will help you delete your old accounts on the most popular social media sites.

Facebook 

Moving onto the biggest social network platform of all time, Facebook, with over a billion users, keeps things simple and makes it incredibly easy for you to deactivate your account.

Once you go into the "settings" tab from the down arrow in your browser, select your Facebook information and then select delete your account and information". When you are in this menu you will go to delete your account and must add the password to confirm.

Foursquare 

Foursquare hit the internet over a decade ago to let friends know where you are and figuring out where they are. In order to delete your Foursquare account, you will have to access the platform from your computer. Move onto the "privacy" settings tab where you have to scroll to the end of the page and find an option to delete your account. When you select this option you will go to a page where you need to confirm whether you want to delete your account or not.

Google 

Google is the undisputed search engine leader with one of the most interconnected ecosystems. By creating one account for Google you are able to access a plethora of different applications and websites without having to create separate accounts. In order to delete your Google+ or Gmail account, you will need to delete your entire Google account.

Go to "Google account settings" and choose "delete account and services". There you will see the "delete products" option, where you can access all of your Google applications. You need to sign in to all of the websites first before you can delete your account.

Instagram 

Facebook's younger brother is possibly the most used social media platform by Millennials, according to Hootsuite. Thanks to its focus on visual communication, it is the go-to place in order to find talented artists.

Deleting your account is very simple and takes little time to properly accomplish. While you can manage your privacy settings using the mobile app, you must go through an internet browser in order to delete your account. Simply go to the "delete your account page", and there you will have to provide a reason for deleting your account. Once you provide the reason, you will provide your password and then select the option to permanently delete the account.

Linked In 

LinkedIn is the social network for professionals looking for new opportunities to connect with other professionals and grow their business and careers. If you are on the platform, the profile should be complete and up-to-date. If you are no longer using the platform, delete the account. At the top right corner of any page of LinkedIn, you will first have to access the "privacy and settings" tab. From there, choose the "account" tab and then select closing your LinkedIn account. You will have to give your feedback and verify your account before you can delete it. From there you will see a post telling you of the consequences of deleting your account and then the final page which will be for confirmation.

MySpace 

This social media platform has been bought and sold several times since its glory days (2005 to 2009). In 2016 their database was breached and leaked to a dark market website. To delete your MySpace account, you will first have to login to the account that you want to delete. From there, select the "gear" icon and choose the "account" tab. There, you will see an option to delete your account. Before you can delete your account you will have to provide a reason after which you will receive an email for confirmation. Open the email and follow its instructions.

Pinterest 

Pinterest is a web-based pinboard or bulletin board, a place to bookmark images found online. To delete your Pinterest account you will first have to go to the triple dot icon on the website and select the "edit settings" option. From there you will have to go down to the "account" page and select "deactivate account". From there you will click "yes" to receive an email, which you need to open and follow in order to permanently delete your account.

Snapchat 

Snapchat is a service that, for a short time, rivaled Facebook and was the go-to social media app for many people. As is the case with Instagram, you cannot delete your account from the mobile app; you must delete it from a proper browser.

From the website browser, go to "delete your account" and enter your username and password. Your account does not delete instantly and it takes about 30 days to remove all of the information.

Twitter 

Regardless of how famous your really are, everyone has a Twitter handle. Many people follow and get their news from the tweets of everyone from legitimate newsmakers and media organizations to raving fans of our favorite sport teams. Deleting your Twitter account is incredibly easy. It takes at least 30 days for all of your tweets to get deleted. Select "settings and privacy" from the form on the menu and go into the account tab. From there you will have to deactivate your account and enter your password to confirm the action.

Tumblr 

Tumblr probably has one of the most bustling communities on the internet, which is also why it is very easy for anyone to delete their account. While you are able to delete your account, the content other people have reposted will remain available on the site. To delete your account, click on the person-shaped icon on the website, and go to "settings". There select "delete account", entering your email and password to confirm the process. Tumblr also states that it takes them a few days to properly wipe all of your content.

Whatsapp 

Whatsapp is a free messaging app to send Voice over IP (VoIP), images, video calls and documents using a mobile device. To delete your account, simply open your Whatsapp and go to the "settings" menu. From there, select account and go to "Delete my account", after which you will have to enter your phone number in international code and tap "delete".

YouTube 

YouTube is second only to Facebook as a social media platform, owned by Alphabet, the owner the parent company of Google. A well-managed channel can help to improve website ratings. A channel not in use should be deleted. Deleting your channel from the largest video-sharing platform on the internet is quite simple. You will first have to sign into your YouTube account and go to your advanced settings. From there, choose "delete channel" and then opt for "delete channel permanently". This will launch a prompt where you can confirm if you want to delete your channel or would still like to keep it.

Final Words of Advice 

According to industry experts and a recent article in Consumer Reports, it is a best practice to reduce the risk of having your personal and professional data being misused or stolen by keep your current accounts secure and deleting accounts no longer in use.

Apr 22, 2019

Conservative alternatives to Google, YouTube, Facebook and Twitter

We've been blogging a lot lately on the big tech companies and their censorship of conservative thought. If you watch CNN or MSNBC for your news, you might think these sorts of things are just a conspiracy.

Well, they most certainly aren't. In fact, Project Veritas recently did some reports exposing Twitter and Facebook's bias. Here are those videos:





In January a story broke about how Google manually manipulates search results in an effort of censorship.

Via The Daily Mail:
A document that appears to be a leaked internal Google discussion thread, reportedly indicates that the tech giant regularly manipulates certain controversial search results. 
An anonymous source inside the company disclosed the thread to Breitbart, which reported this week that Google has a 'blacklist' containing search terms that are deemed sensitive and thus should be manually filtered.  
Included on the list of 'controversial search queries' are several terms related to abortion, Parkland shooting survivor and gun control advocate David Hogg and Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters.   
The thread, if authentic, would appear to go against Google CEO Sundar Pichai's sworn testimony in front of Congress last month that the company does not 'manually intervene' in its Google search results. 
Google also owns YouTube and there are plenty of stories where YouTube has banned, or demonetizes conservative channels.

Via USA Today:
...If something vaguely conservative and intellectually stimulating manages to get past Google’s content gatekeepers, they just remove it. YouTube, which is owned by Google, routinely demonetizes, restricts and censors conservative content. One target of YouTube was Dennis Prager’s PragerU, which had 40 of its videos restricted. Prager sued the social media video giant this year following these unfounded restrictions. YouTube has also been known for banning pro-life videos.
You get my point right?

Well there are alternatives that people can use. Alternatives that value free speech, privacy and don't manipulate and ban people for their beliefs! Here they are:

FACEBOOK and TWITTER Alternative:

Gab


GOOGLE Alternatives:

StartPage

Duck Duck Go

YOUTUBE Alternative:

BitChute



I'm sure there are others, but these are the ones people are most talking about. All claim to make privacy a priority, and value your rights.

Do you know of any others? Let us know in the comments!

Apr 15, 2019

How To Backup All Of Your Photos and Videos From Facebook

Last week we mentioned that we were abruptly suspended from Twitter. Just a few weeks before that we were temporarily suspended from Facebook as well. In fact, I spent roughly 60 days in the first quarter of 2019 banned from Facebook!

With all of this censorship I thought it would be a good idea to backup all of my photos and videos from Facebook in case I got permanently banned. Since I was doing it, I figured you might want to know how to do it too. It's pretty easy really.
  • Login to Facebook from your computer browser
  • Navigate to Settings from the drop down menu at the top of the page


  • In the left menu, click on Your Facebook Information then click on Download Your Information


  • Check all of the information you want to backup (I only left Photos and Videos checked) then click the Create File button


  • After a while you will be able to download a zip file will all of your information from the Available Files tab

That's it. Pretty easy right?

I highly recommend this if you are a conservative on Facebook, especially if you are active with your political posts. As it gets closer and closer to the 2020 Presidential election, things are only going to get worse! I'd hate for folks to lose years of family photos and videos due to Facebook bias.

Did this help you out? Let us know in the comments!

Incidentally, if you didn't know, we've moved to Gab! The social media platform that values freedom of speech! Follow us there!

Apr 8, 2019

We've been suspended from Twitter. We're moving to an alternative!

Well, we pissed off the liberal engineers at Twitter today. They unleashed a righteous ban hammer not just on my political website's (mainwashed.com) Twitter account, but on all of my accounts including the account for Bauer-Power as well!

This isn't that surprising, I mean Project Veritas exposed that Twitter engineers are actively censoring conservatives.

Check it out:



What is surprising is that they banned my conservative account, and every other account that I've ever logged in as. Including my son's Twitter account for his YouTube channel!

Well, we give up. You win Twitter! If you only want socialists and liberals on your site, they can have you. We found an alternative to Twitter (and Facebook for that matter) that values free speech! It's called Gab!

From their page:
A social network that champions free speech, individual liberty and the free flow of information online. All are welcome.
If you are concerned about freedom of speech on Twitter and Facebook as well, you should definitely jump ship and give Gab a try! If you do, give us a follow at https://gab.com/bauer-power!

My new favorite mobile Twitter client

Ever since being in Facebook jail for 2/3rds of the first quarter this year, I've spent quite a bit of time on Twitter instead. Facebook is actually teaching me how NOT to use their service! ­čĄú

Ironic isn't it?

Well, since I'm spending so much time on Twitter, one thing I noticed with the stock Twitter app is that it drained my battery very quickly. Some folks say changing it to night mode helps, but it's still a battery hog.

Enter my new favorite client, Friendly for Twitter!

From Google Play:
Like our Friendly For Facebook app, it is built as an extension of the light Twitter mobile website. It preserves your battery, storage, data and use a smart notification system.

◆ DOWNLOADER ◆
Friendly T helps you to download Twitter videos, gif or pictures to your device.
◆ BATTERY SAVER ◆
Less services and background tasks. Option to disable all notifications. Design and animation optimized to use less power.
◆ SMART NOTIFICATION ◆
Notification system with option to enable/disable Direct Message and option to choose a check frequency.
◆ LITE ◆
Lightweight client with storage and cache optimized. Fast on all devices.
◆ MULTIPLE ACCOUNTS ◆
Add as many Twitter accounts as you want.
◆ CUSTOM ◆
Change theme color of Friendly T. Easy dark mode access.
◆ AD-FREE ◆
No banner. Block all Sponsored Tweets.
One thing to note too, with the stock app I was frequently getting logged out for some reason. That no longer happens with Friendly for Twitter. The biggest thing though is that it saves my battery life!

Do you use a third party Twitter app? Which one do you use? Let us know in the comments!

Apr 1, 2019

How To Fix SPF Fail: Too Many DNS Lookups

At my day job that shall remain nameless, we use a lot of hosted platforms that are set to send out emails on our behalf. The problem with that comes when creating a SPF record so all these services can essentially spoof your emails!

Why would this become a problem? Well, just to give you an example, let's say you are using Office365 for email, but you also use SalesForce and maybe some other platform. On top of that, maybe you have an internal SMTP server or servers for whatever reason. This ends up making a very long SPF DNS record!

Well, I found a really good article from the folks at Black Knight Solutions that shows you how to create large SPF records the right way:
Consider the following SPF record for 'sampledomain.com' - note that the entries are for example purposes only. 
sampledomain.com TXT
v=spf1 a mx a:mail.domain.com a:mail.domain.ie a:server5.somedomain.com a:server7.somedomain.com mx:server95.somedomain.com include:thatdomain.com ip4:192.168.0.1 ip4:192.168.0.2 ip4:192.168.03 ip4:192.168.0.4 ip4:192.168.0.04 -all

This record above is too long and needs to be shortened; you will have to split this up into two or more records and include them in the main SPF record.

Create the following SPF records on the domain name: 
spf1.sampledomain.com TXT
v=spf1 a mx a:mail.domain.com a:mail.domain.ie a:server5.somedomain.com -all 
spf2.sampledomain.com TXT
v=spf1 server7.somedomain.com mx:server95.somedomain.com include:thatdomain.com -all 
spf3.sampledomain.com TXT
v=spf1 ip4:192.168.0.1 ip4:192.168.0.2 ip4:192.168.03 ip4:192.168.0.4 ip4:192.168.0.04 -all 
Note: You can create more records as required.

Then amend the initial SPF as follows: 
sampledomain.com TXT
v=spf1 include:spf1.sampledomain.com include:spf2.sampledomain.com include:spf3.sampledomain.com -all"

Once DNS updates, all records would be read as one by recipient servers.
Essentially, you need to break up all your multiple entries into separate SPF records, then only reference those records in your top level record! Makes sense right?

After I did this, the error is was getting when running a SPF check tool (SPF Fail: Too Many DNS Lookups) went away!

Did this help you out? Let us know in the comments!

Mar 25, 2019

How To Tell If You're "Shadow Banned" on Twitter

Have you heard of the term shadow banning on Twitter? In short, it's when Twitter feels that you are violating some broadly interpreted term of service, so they limit the reach of your account... and they don't tell you about it! The funny thing about it though is that it seems to only happen to conservatives.

From The Independent:
The issue of online "shadow banning" has once again provoked a major debate about free speech and censorship, after US President Donald Trump accused Twitter of silencing Republicans. 
Shadow banning essentially means that a user of Twitter or any other online forum is not actually banned outright. Instead, all of their posts are made only visible to themselves. 
For example, if a Twitter user was shadow banned, they would still be able to see their tweets but no one else would. The idea is to limit the reach of a user without them being aware that they have been silenced – potentially preventing them from retaliating against the moderators responsible for the ban.
Well, Shadow Banning is a very real thing. In fact, a recent hidden camera video from Project Veritas shows how Twitter engineers use Shadow Banning to silence conservatives:




So why am I bringing this all up? Well, our Mainwashed political Twitter account recently got shadow banned and we didn't even realize it! How did we figure it out? I'm glad you asked!

We found an online Shadow Ban check tool! All you have to do is enter your Twitter handle, and click check!



I'm not sure who exactly we pissed off, but we're taking it as a compliment that we did! It means our message is getting out there!

Anyway, if you are a conservative person on Twitter and your reach has been significantly stifled, try this tool out. You might just find that you've been Shadow Banned!

Mar 18, 2019

The Rise of Kubernetes [Infographic]

At the company I work for during the day that shall remain nameless, we're starting to look at containerized application deployments instead of running applications on servers in an "old school way."

One thing we're starting to look at is Kubernetes. If you haven't heard of it before, here is a short description from their page:
Kubernetes (k8s) is an open-source system for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. 
It groups containers that make up an application into logical units for easy management and discovery. Kubernetes builds upon 15 years of experience of running production workloads at Google, combined with best-of-breed ideas and practices from the community.
From what we've seen, Kubernetes will drastically change the way my company hosts, runs and deploys our applications to clients. With that in mind, I found this really cool infographic about Kubernetes. Check it out!



[Via Mapr]

Mar 11, 2019

Should I Bother with Mobile Marketing?

Have you ever wondered whether or not your mobile marketing campaigns are worth the time and effort you spend on them? There's no denying that they're cost effective, but are they getting the kind of results you hoped for? Should you try something else instead?

Before you abandon your mobile marketing efforts for good, consider this. The team at App Geeks found that in 2015, 92% of adults had a mobile phone. Fast-forward to this year, and the evidence in favor of mobile becomes even more compelling: 55.79% of web searches were conducted through a mobile device.

There are several other similar statistics in the infographic below, so we won't go into those right now. We've shared a copy down below so that you can see for yourself.

It won't take long to read through, but don't let that fool you—it's packed with information. What's nice about its format is that it is all pure facts. There's no airy-fairy, flowery prose to wade through either.

Considering the medium they're talking about, this makes sense. After all, with mobile marketing, you need to get your message across quickly and succinctly. There are places to publish a novel, but this isn't one of them.

What's also interesting with the research they conducted is that they looked at case studies of how companies used this form of advertising. So you get the statistics proving why you should look into it, as well as the practical examples of it in action.

But why are we still talking about this? You want to check out the infographic, don't you? So here you are—enjoy. And don't forget to leave us a note if you want to see more posts like this one.



Mar 4, 2019

5 Signs That Your Cyber Security Needs Upgrading

Unfortunately for too many businesses, it is simple to get left behind. Doing this can render you vulnerable to hackers and in the risk of suffering serious financial and reputation harm. Does your company show the signs of poor cyber safety? Listed below are just five of the major signs which you might need an upgrade.

1. Your defenses are not proactive

Cybercriminals and hackers have gotten so sophisticated that relying solely on traditional security defenses like firewalls and anti-virus software is something of the past. In 2018 it is not sufficient to assume that your perimeter protection will block all known threats, or respond to incoming attacks once they happen -- cyber-attacks are too damaging to your business for it.

Instead of attempting to take care of cyber-attacks while or after they've occurred, it's more economical to concentrate on prevention and early detection. Many cyber security firms provide proactive community monitoring to help detect threats and react before they can inflict damage and disturbance.

2. Your business is growing

The cyber security requirements of almost any business evolve continuously as a result of business growth. As your business expands you might be interested in investing in technologies offering productivity and cost-saving advantages such as cloud computing along with the Web of Things (IOT). Doing so without concurrently strengthening and assessing your own defenses can put the whole of your organization at risk from cyber criminals.

If your business is going through a period of considerable expansion you should put some thought in how this will affect your current IT infrastructure. As you encounter expansion your cyber defenses need to develop also.

3. You start seeing regular attacks on your systems

One of the most significant indicators that you want to boost your electronic defenses is if you are beginning to see normal attacks taking place from the system. Cyber-attacks are sadly becoming part of the lifetime of virtually every company in the united kingdom , but getting murdered may also show that your feeble defenses make you a simple target.

You shouldn't assume that in the event you have suffered one attack, you've been unlucky and are unlikely to endure another. Hackers will always attempt to compromise weak targets, and if your company has been targeted in the past you're advertising the fact your systems aren't especially robust.

4. You haven't upgraded your security in a while

Technology changes quickly and with hackers becoming more skilled and advanced, you will need to move constantly. When it's been a matter of decades without any substantial changes to your security system then you could be in a very vulnerable position. Once again, it's a good idea to work with experienced professionals to help direct any improvements.

5. You're not keeping up with new regulations

Have you been captured off-guard from the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)? With new guidelines governing businesses which manage any kind of private information, many companies are made to examine and update their own systems and procedures to attain compliance.

It's very important to be aware that a crucial component of the GDPR will be the requirement to safeguard the personal data your organisation procedures . This means that you must demonstrate that suitable measures are set up to defend your company against cyber attacks. It can be a good idea to utilize outside GDPR specialists who will be able to provide advice and advice on the Actions you Will Need to take

When you consider telephone theft, then you may think of someone physically stealing your cellphone. However, with our lives today saved to our telephones, we need to be more concerned with individuality hackers stealing our private data, not only the phone itself. When it may feel safe to work with a Wi-Fi hotspot at a cafe, there is always a possibility your personal information has been hacked into, and this is very often far more valuable than your wallet or keys.

Our telephones have become an extension of ourselves, almost like getting an excess limb. A Norton report from 2013 shows that 1 in 3 smartphone users have undergone cybercrime. So how can we stay as safe as you can when using our mobiles?

There are a few simple methods to staying safe online, like updating the cell software frequently or installing anti virus virus applications, however the most obvious tip is to keep away from Wi-Fi. If you are always on the move, this can be tricky to avoid at times, and that is where a VPN (Virtual Private Network) can be convenient. Ideal for remote working, VPN's will be the online model of computer firewalls, allowing a secure connection on a general network. Whether you're using your pc, phone or tabletcomputer, information running to and from the VPN server is securely encrypted. As a consequence, you can surf at will at a public area without danger of your information being hacked into.

How can you setup a VPN?

All of iPhones are currently encrypted mechanically, whereas Android mobiles are not. It is possible to set up a VPN for free on your android within your Wi-Fi phone configurations, but many experts suggest heading for paid services over free solutions for complete security. These solutions are offered for iPhones and Androids, also there are Apps like Express VPN that guide you through the procedure of establishing a server on your cell phone.

If you think locking your display will stop any data from being stolen, then think again. Although this is a fantastic beginning, it doesn't stop most tech-savvy fraudsters from gaining access to some data.

Other benefits of a VPN (besides security) include having the ability to see live TV or catch up when travelling overseas. Some people buy one to only unblock Netflix or alternative streaming sites. Basically, it will make it look as if you are in a different country letting you watch sites you might not otherwise have access to. However, this will only work if you pick the perfect server location.

Picking a VPN

There are a good deal of VPN suppliers around, and before you entrust them with your valuable information, it's a good idea to get your homework . So, what do you need to look out for when selecting the correct solution for your cellphone?

This all depends on what you are using it for. Prices for starters is critical, most suppliers offer yearly subscriptions and shopping around will let you get the very best bargain. But, there are more important qualities to look out for such as server location, encryption protocols, and any data or bandwidth constraints.

What you'll be using your own VPN for, will decide exactly what you need from these types of features. As an example, protocols change in safety, so if you're using it to unblock an streaming website then a'PPTP' protocol is adequate. But if you were planning to be sharing files and obtaining data then you need to be searching for a supplier that supports an OpenVPN. A list of the top suppliers for Android can be discovered on BestVPN.com.

Some state that checking a supplier's privacy policy is easily the most crucial element when deciding on the perfect product to buy. A supplier that logs all your information defeats the object of having a VPN in the first place. A service which is not required by legislation to log your surfing or data is just the one to choose if you're using it for highly confidential information transfers and to keep your data secure.

Feb 25, 2019

CHERRY INTRODUCES MW 8 ADVANCED: RECHARGEABLE, HIGH-PRECISION MOUSE



Kenosha, Wis.Cherry, the foremost provider of computer input devices, presents the MW 8 ADVANCED wireless mouse. This mouse offers innovative features and is built to meet the highest standards of the most discerning user. The MW 8 ADVANCED joins Cherry's portfolio as the new flagship mouse, combining timeless design with state-of-the-art technology.

Best materials and high-quality workmanship 

The CHERRY MW 8 ADVANCED features an elegant metal surface made of brushed aluminum that conveys the highest-quality workmanship. The rubber pads have the Voronoi cell structure on both sides of the mouse to ensure a good grip.

The MW 8 ADVANCED fits the hand perfectly, making it a pleasure both to look at and to use. To top off the MW 8 ADVANCED, Cherry added additional sophisticated features. For instance, the mouse includes an extra durable mouse wheel with optical scanning, a magnetic lock for the USB receiver, and a transport bag. These features make the MW 8 ADVANCED equally well-suited to mobile and stationary applications.

High-precision PixArt sensor 

The CHERRY MW 8 ADVANCED not only looks and feels nice but is also a top performer. From a technical point of view, MW 8 ADVANCED boasts the high-precision PixArt "track-on-glass" laser navigation sensor with optical scanning, ensuring the mouse can work on nearly any surface – including glass – without a mouse pad. In addition, the sensor resolution can be adjusted in four steps between 600, 1000, 1600, and 3200 DPI (dots per inch), ensuring the MW 8 ADVANCED is suitable for use with 4K monitors.

Wireless connectivity through 2.4 GHz wireless or Bluetooth 

The MW 8 ADVANCED also has multiple connectivity options. Users can simply connect the mouse to a compatible system using the built-in Bluetooth 4.0 functionality. Alternatively, one can use the supplied USB receiver to establish a 2.4 GHz wireless connection secured with AES-128 encryption.

Switching between the two modes of connectivity is a breeze, and is done by sliding the switch at the bottom of the mouse. Using this feature, you can connect the CHERRY MW 8 ADVANCED with a notebook and desktop PC at the same time, quickly switching between the two with the simple slide of a switch.

Integrated battery for long service life 

The integrated Lithium battery with a generous capacity of 550 mAh ensures a long service life, with one charge lasting up to 70 days. A two-color status LED provides information about the battery charge, the selected resolution, and the connection to the PC.

About Cherry 

Cherry is the leader in input peripherals for Desktop, Industrial, Security, Healthcare, POS and Keyswitch applications for over 60 years. Cherry is the global leader in the design, development, and manufacture of computer keyboards, mice, magnetic and chip card readers and the best mechanical keyswitches in the industry. Founded by Walter Cherry in 1953 and best known for our class-leading MX keyswitches, Cherry brings that same quality and durability to its entire product line.

Feb 18, 2019

5 Cybersecurity Risks Most Companies Have

The main cyber security risks in businesses 

1. Employees

The individuals that are involved in an organization are the major weak link in cyber security.

Employees fall for phishing emails. They click links or download stuff which turns out to be malware thus costing the organization a lot of money.

Educating the employees about cybersecurity and ai is the best approach to avoid this. 


2. Passwords

Every account which is associated with the cybersecurity firms or any other business must be secured using a strong password. If possible, 2-factor authentication should be applied too. Make it clear to everyone working in the company that they should never reuse a password that they are using in other web platforms.

In fact, employers should make it a company policy that every worker should change his/her password each month, even though the efficacy of this is being debated.

Additionally, tell your workers that they should never share their passwords with other people.

3. Patch Management

After the Petya and WannaCry attacks, the advantages of updating software were made clear. Those two attacks spread through exploiting a critical weakness within the Windows OS called Eternal Blue. Eternal Blue is what permitted the spreading of malware around business networks.

4. Other Weak Links

Some problems that organizations encounter are not brought about by their cyber security measures. They are brought about by the cyber security measures of some other organizations which they are working with.

You can implement the best cloud cybersecurity protocols however if the 3rd party which your organization is working with gets compromised, the attacker can gain access to your organization.

There are dedicated servers or network segmentation which can be used so that different organizations cannot connect directly to your organization. That will protect your company from the 3rd parties’ weak cyber security links.


5. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)

BYOD is a common practice that most companies embrace. When workers come to work with their gadgets, they will also go outside with them or use them to work whenever they are away from their workplace.

The workers’ personal devices do not have the best kind of security are the office gadgets. They may easily be compromised by hackers. 

If you allow BYOD, then ensure you have a good cybersecurity and data protection policy in place. Steps, like permitting access to office networks via a virtual private network and ensuring that the workers implement 2-factor authentication, are recommended.

Conclusion

From those cybersecurity threats described above, it is obvious that educating employees is very important. Your employees must know the best cyber security measures and the danger they may be putting their employer in if they do not adhere to all cyber security measures.

About the author: Evelyn Poindexter is a professional interpreter from Great Britain with over 2 years of experience. Her hobby is writing however and she puts her mind into pieces she composes in order to get the best feedback from various audiences. She also hosts the website at besttechexpert.guide.

Feb 11, 2019

Azure: State of virtual disks on VM is 'detached' after an ASR test failover

At my day job that shall not be named, we ran into a very interesting issue over the last month and a half or so. You see, we run our production environment in Microsoft Azure, and the way we've configured our Microsoft SQL database cluster is by following this Always On Setup in Azure.

On top of that, for performance in Azure, we are using Microsoft Storage Spaces. If you aren't familiar with Storage Spaces, you basically take a number of physical disks (They are actually virtual disks in Azure) and pool them together so you are striping data across them. This increases your IO, and thus increases your performance. It's pretty slick!

Typical Storage Spaces/Storage Pool Setup


I digress...

Anyway, we wanted to add a new pool to both of our servers, so naturally we added the virtual disks in the VM, then created our pool in Microsoft Storage Spaces, and created our virtual drives on top. Simple right?

Well it was simple until we used Azure Site Recovery (ASR) to replicate these new disks to our DR zone in the East US region. When we did our test failover, and powered up our servers in the East US region, we noticed that the servers showed our virtual disks as being detached. WTF is that all about?!?!

Well after going back and forth with Azure tech support for weeks, my Systems Engineer finally figured out a fix by running a PowerShell command.

The command he ran was:

 Get-VirtualDisk | Where-Object -FilterScript {$_.IsManualAttach -eq "True"} | Set-VirtualDisk -IsManualAttach $False  

After running this on the production nodes from an elevated PowerShell, we no longer had the issue of the virtual disks replicating in a detached state when we initiated ASR test failovers!

Now why did Windows mark these new virtual disks to be manually attached in the first place? We still don't know that, but if you run into this issue yourselves at least you know how to fix it.

Feb 5, 2019

Using Cloud Archiving for Information Storage

Do you have particular information you would like to keep forever, if possible? Information that you really do not need to open frequently but you need to save it? This information could range from a company’s vital information to a year worth of research information or even treasured moments from a special family’s vacation.

Losing such data could be the worst nightmare ever! It could happen to anyone at any time and with any information. Results of such could be quite devastating. It is therefore important to be prepared for such possible time by having extra backup sources of that data.

Before determining the type of backup that is best suitable for your use, you should first recognize the particular type of data that you need to backup. Some data do not need to be backed up as they are readily available in cases of loss, important documents are mostly always needed to be backed up, pictures and created videos could also be important for backup. Also, these data should be properly organized so that in a retrieval case, it doesn’t get too clumsy to retrieve your files. Determining the best storage for you would also require you to be cost-effective in making your decision.



Ways in which you could back up your data

There are various ways in which data can be kept safe for future purposes. Newer ways also keep developing. Such ways include;

  • The use of flash drives; these are small devices that can be used to move files. Additionally, they come with a small storage capacity for data and can only be used for temporary storage of data. Using the flash drive is not a secure mode of storage as anything could happen to it, it could get missing, stolen or even infected with viruses. This translates to the fact that security options with a flash drive are not made for data permanent storage.
  • The use of external hard drives; these devices come with slightly larger storage capacity than the flash drives. As the name implies, the external hard drives are devices that can be connected to your computer externally through a cable or wire. It is also prone to be stolen, missing or getting infected.
  • Online backup service is a method of data backup and storage in which a service provider handles the stored data. Back up services through cloud archiving; this is very effective in backing up data that are not necessarily needed often. It is easy to manage and your data is encrypted to ensure security.

Why you should backup your data with cloud archiving

You could lose your laptop, flash drives or external drive. In other cases, it could get infected where you have no hope of recovering information on it. It is, therefore, important to save your information on platforms where it cannot be affected by these. 

The survey held in 2018, reports that about 66% of the people say that they will use a private or public cloud for archiving in 2018.

Cloud archive is a cost-effective mode of storing your data and also time effective. It relieves you of having to buy devices each time a prior device gets filled up. Backing up your data with cloud archiving would make ensure the availability of your data anytime you need it. Cloud archiving is mostly in a public cloud. Data are encrypted to ensure the security of the data. 

Data kept on the cloud can be searched out easily, this makes it less burdensome to find your hidden files.  Chances of losing your data on the cloud archive are very entirely null as it is not stored on a particular device but on the internet storage.

Lost data could mean starting from scratch for some people, or loss of valuables for others. Either way, using the cloud archive is a way to prevent such occurrences. With cloud archiving, you are assured of getting your data anytime you need it.


Feb 4, 2019

How to Convert #Bitcoin to Dollars

Exchanging bitcoins to an useful currency.

Bitcoins seem to have been heralded by most as the currency of tomorrow, but there are only a handful of sites that agree to accept them. Luckily for us, transforming bitcoins to a workable currency like dollars is simple and plain. If you desire to be aware of just how much bitcoin is worth, run a simple net search. If you want to essentially convert bitcoin to dollars, transfer them in an internet market and sell them to an interested consumer. The online marketplace might promptly and easily convert your bitcoins to dollars and transmit them to a debit card, bank account, or digital wallet of your determination.

Selecting a Conversion Service.

1) Compare the rates made available by diverse conversion services and determine the top one.

Equally when the general bitcoin conversion rate improves, several conversion services provide you with diverse conversion rates. For example, think one service gives to convert your bitcoins at a rate of 1 to $5000 USD and one other offers to turn 1 bitcoin in to $5250 USD. All additional things getting equivalent, you should go along with the second service to acquire the most of your bitcoins.

2) Convert your bitcoin adding a service with low fees.

Conversion services often ask for a fee. Usually there is a flat fee if how highly you exchange, and often the conversion service charges a segment of the sum you exchange. Evaluate the costs associated with the numerous conversion services and choice one that offers you the ideal deal. Service fees modify over time, so make sure to verify the services terms and fee routinely.

3) Confirm that the service you're utilizing is safe.

Generally there are a handful of ways to authenticate that a bitcoin conversion web page is harmless. One is to check review sites for testimonials. One other method is to ensure the website uses https (as opposed to the less comfy http) in their URL. At last, implement a conversion service that permits two-factor identification, making certain that simply you will likely be able to confirm bitcoin conversions.

4) Choose a service that has low transfer time period.

A bit of web sites transfer bitcoins to your account just after 2 days, but quicker services may convert your bitcoins to dollars in 2 hours or even less.

Enrolling and Uploading Your Bitcoin.

1) Register for an account.

Enrolling for an account comes to providing your name, date of birth, address, email address, telephone number, and other personal data. You'll also need to provide bank account information, an online payment service like PayPal, or similarly (depending on in what way you want to convert and transfer your bitcoins).

2) Decide on the most effective security options every time you sign up.

Each time you obtain an account on a bitcoin marketplace, you'll have the probability to let two-factor authentication, which will results in you would enter a password and a randomly built code sent to your cellphone. You may also wish to let a multi-signature option, which in turn requires innumerable independent approvals in advance of producing a bitcoin conversion or withdrawal. Both of these kinds of security settings can safeguard you from theft and hackers.

3) Deposit your bitcoins in the markets.

The specific mechanism by which usually you deposit your bitcoins should differ subject to how your bitcoins are really today stored. Primarily, depositing your bitcoins is as easy as clicking deposit bitcoins, on the top of the marketplace's web site. No matter your bitcoin encryption key factor is printed out, you'll be advised to enter into it. Regardless whether your bitcoins are in a wallet (an encrypted file or code), you could be asked to upload the file. Don't be afraid to contact customer support in the event you're having problem depositing your bitcoins.

Exchange Rates.

Convert your bitcoins in the event that the exchange rate is very good. Across time frame, exchange rates climb and fall down. As a representation, one day the exchange rate may well allow you to trade 1 bitcoin for $4900. A week later, the exchange rate may perhaps provide $5150 meant for 1 bitcoin. Hold out to exchange your bitcoins right up until the according dollar worth increases. Presently there is no fixed segment or worth that specifies a helpful exchange rate. Some people may possibly experience that if the worth of a bitcoin springs up by $100, it is an OK instance to convert their currency. Some people may delay until the value they'd get springs up by 5 percent. Confirm the exchange rate constantly online or sign up intended for a service that updates you on the bitcoin-to-dollar exchange rate so you can understand when it improves.

Sell off your bitcoins in the market place.

Offer your bitcoins in the current market. Several marketplaces permit you to sell your bitcoins to another person. Individuals enable you to sell them instantly to the market place, which usually will after that resell them to interested buyers later on. In either case, the certain manner you implement to sell off your bitcoins will differ slightly according to the market place you make use of. Most of the times, you can merely click on Sell your bitcoins or some equivalent choice to get the process initiated. The bitcoins will the be turned to dollars and moved to the bank account you offered.

Save your bitcoins on a debit card.

Place your bitcoins on a debit card. A handful of marketplaces let you to load your bitcoins on to a debit card that conveniently converts them to dollars. You may be able to acquire an online digital debit card, which usually only supplies you with a string of figures you can adopt for online purchases that need to have dollars, or you can generate a basic debit card in the mail. Similarly these kind of debit cards cost money, but they present an added benefit, exclusively if you pretty much never make use of cash.

Transfer your bitcoins to another digital wallet.

Switch your bitcoins to one different online wallet. Several bitcoin conversion services make it easy for you to convert your bitcoins to dollars by switching them to PayPal, Apple Pay, or similar services. If this is the approach you want to convert your bitcoins to dollars, put your payout method to the online digital wallet you want to use. Then simply, basically sell off or transfer your bitcoins to the service of your determination by using the marketplace menus. Transforming bitcoins to dollars by transferring them to an online wallet sometimes has bigger fees and reduce limits than transferring them to your bank account. This alternative may perhaps, nonetheless, be much better intended for users who do online acquisitions repeatedly and don't wish the inconvenience of relocating their money from a bank to an online wallet.

Jan 28, 2019

How to Choose A Reliable Iphone Repair Center?

Issues like broken screens, home buttons, switches, and power buttons are very common with the iPhone. Short battery life is one of them! Over time, almost every electronic device gets deteriorated in the functionality and features. Same happens with the iPhone! And, there are only two alternatives left for any iPhone holder - one is a new purchase and another is getting it repaired by a professional. But, better option is to replace the battery of your phone rather than replacing your phone.

So, if you are thinking of the repair of your iPhone, then you must know how to find out the best iPhone repair place.

Here, let's have a comprehensive look at the process of choosing a reliable iPhone repair center or shop:

Everyone feels pride by having an iPhone! With the ultimate functionality and applications, people hardly consider staying away from their phones for even an hour. iPhone is extremely sensitive and prone to crack thus, it's required to hand it over to a trustworthy expert for repair. With the increasing demand and usage of iPhone, there is hard competition in the iPhone repair market. Nowadays, there are hundreds of shops that offer all sorts of iPhone repair services at competitive price ranges. So, everyone can fall into the trap of finding the best store for getting the phone repaired!

Accurate research and necessary homework are the two aspects that can make the process a lot easier for you. it's true that every store claims to provide the fastest and best service at reasonable prices but it's advisable that never visit a store in your region. Instead of this, refer to the online listing of different repair shops in your locality and shortlist one that offers the sort of repair which you need for your phone. Get referrals from your friends or family members who have taken the iPhone repair services earlier! Since they have experienced the services, their feedback can provide you with some most reliable names for repair.

After this, you can personally visit the shortlisted shop or place around you for the purpose of getting an idea of their prices and repair work done in the past. Not every repair center is capable to repair iPhone. Therefore, you just need to ensure that the place that you select is authorized and licensed to perform iPhone repair.

Jan 21, 2019

Protect Your Data With These Password Tips

As cyber attacks seem to become increasingly more prevalent, far-reaching and long-lasting in their damage, it's more important than ever that you and your employees do everything possible to protect your company's data. One often overlooked way to keep sensitive information safe is paying extra attention to password security.

Passwords are valued currency in the Digital Age, and using strong passwords to prevent unauthorized access is a necessity," says Stacy King, executive director of the Federal Bar Association. "The ability to transfer customer data, client files, medical records, employee files, financial records and other valuable and sensitive information has presented a new world of legal risks."

So, are you doing what you can to protect yourself and your business?

Password should be unique and interesting.

The tendency to simplify your passwords and repeat them makes them prone to attack. If you're going to have a security system, you want it to work, right? Effective passwords are sufficiently long (8 or more characters) and combine upper and lowercase letters along with numbers and symbols.

Use Lengthy Passwords

Length can exponentially increase the security of your password. A strong password should be at least eight characters, with 12 to 14 being a recommended standard. Be sure to use a mix of alphanumeric characters and symbols, along with capitalization.

Do not repeat your Password.

Do not use the same password for more than one site. If you do, when one password is stolen it can be used to compromise more than one account. Think of a system that makes sense to you, but is not easily guessed by others, to vary your passwords.

Protect your password.

If you must write down your password, don't save it electronically. If your computer is hacked, then you've just given the criminal access to all your accounts when he stumbles on your "my passwords" document. Store any written passwords in a secure location, like a safe.

Employ two-factor or multi-factor authentication.

Adding an extra step to your log-in credentials bolsters your protection. It might be a fingerprint, a pin sent to your phone, or a security question you need to answer. Stolen credentials may become useless to a thief if you have this extra layer of protection. Check your account settings and add MFA if it's available.

Avoid the Automatic Login Feature.

It might save you time and frustration, but automatic, saved login information, including passwords, may make it more likely that your company could be hacked, says Michael Bruemmer, vice president of identity protection at Experian. (So, you may want to avoid using the "remember password" feature.)

Watch what you share online.

Giving the world insight into your personal life on social media or elsewhere can make passwords and answers to security questions easier to guess. It also gives cybercriminals information to launch effective spear phishing attacks. Oversharing equals more exposure to cybercrime.

Change your password.

The thinking on the value of regular changes to passwords has evolved. You should change your password if you are going to strengthen it, but changing it too often may result in weaker passwords or repeat passwords if your creativity and patience runs short. Of course, if there's an event that suggests your password may have been compromised, by all means, change it.

Jan 15, 2019

None of my Feedburner automatic Twitter post links have been working since March!

I was in for a rude awakening today. Something I wish I would have realized sooner, but just figured it was working so I didn't bother checking on it... until today. That is that the "Socialize" feature in Feedburner no longer works!



I take that back, it still posts to Twitter just fine, but because it still uses goo.gl link shortening, the links don't work!

I noticed today when clicking on one of the links on Twitter that I was redirected to this nonsense:

Dynamic Link not found
If you are the developer of this app, ensure that your Dynamic Links domain is correctly configured and that the path component of this URL is valid.

A quick search on Google brings up this Google Developers Blog post about it:
Starting April 13, 2018, anonymous users and users who have never created short links before today will not be able to create new short links via the goo.gl console. If you are looking to create new short links, we recommend you check out popular services like Bitly and Ow.ly as an alternative. 
If you have existing goo.gl short links, you can continue to use all features of goo.gl console for a period of one year, until March 30, 2019, when we will discontinue the console. You can manage all your short links and their analytics through the goo.gl console during this period. 
After March 30, 2019, all links will continue to redirect to the intended destination. Your existing short links will not be migrated to the Firebase console, however, you will be able to export your link information from the goo.gl console.
Well, gee thanks Google. Considering that Feedburner is one of many Google's properties, one would think that they would have updated that platform to either use their new Firebase console, or to allow users to use another shortening service. Apparently that is too much to ask though.

Now I'm forced to pay money to dlvr.it to autopost my blogs to my various social media accounts. At $10 a month, it's very reasonable. I prefer free, but if I'm forced to, I suppose I can fork over the dough for something that works.

Did this happen to you too? What are you using to auto-post to social media? Let us know in the comments.

Jan 14, 2019

If You Use LastPass, You Should Change All Your Passwords

I've been getting bombarded with a lot of spoofed messages from alleged hackers lately claiming they have stolen my password by inserting a Trojan from some porn site that I had supposedly visited, and they have hacked my webcam and if I don't pay them in bitcoin they will release whatever... blah blah blah. Here you can read an example below:
Hello!

As you may have noticed, I sent you an email from your account.
This means that I have full access to your account: On moment of hack your account has password: [SOME PASSWORD]

You say: this is the old password!
Or: I will change my password at any time!

Yes! You're right!
But the fact is that when you change the password, my trojan always saves a new one!

I've been watching you for a few months now.
The fact is that you were infected with malware through an adult site that you visited.

If you are not familiar with this, I will explain.
Trojan Virus gives me full access and control over a computer or other device.
This means that I can see everything on your screen, turn on the camera and microphone, but you do not know about it.

I also have access to all your contacts and all your correspondence.

Why your antivirus did not detect malware?
Answer: My malware uses the driver, I update its signatures every 4 hours so that your antivirus is silent.

I made a video showing how you satisfy yourself in the left half of the screen, and in the right half you see the video that you watched.
With one click of the mouse, I can send this video to all your emails and contacts on social networks. I can also post access to all your e-mail correspondence and messengers that you use.

If you want to prevent this, transfer the amount of $523 to my bitcoin address (if you do not know how to do this, write to Google: “Buy Bitcoin”).

My bitcoin address (BTC Wallet) is: 1EGap2ZeR8pf9hfJ2KrSAQ1eYCPBcxJrqo

After receiving the payment, I will delete the video and you will never hear me again.
I give you 48 hours to pay.
I have a notice reading this letter, and the timer will work when you see this letter.

Filing a complaint somewhere does not make sense because this email cannot be tracked like my bitcoin address.
I do not make any mistakes.

If I find that you have shared this message with someone else, the video will be immediately distributed.

Best wishes!
These messages are clearly spoofed based on the header and IP information. They obviously didn't hack my email. Anyway, pretty funny right?

Krebs On Security wrote a post about a similar scam, and this is what they surmised:
It is likely that this improved sextortion attempt is at least semi-automated: My guess is that the perpetrator has created some kind of script that draws directly from the usernames and passwords from a given data breach at a popular Web site that happened more than a decade ago, and that every victim who had their password compromised as part of that breach is getting this same email at the address used to sign up at that hacked Web site.
Oh, just a site that was hacked 10 years ago? No big deal right? I disagree. I think the passwords these script kiddies are using came from a LastPass breach.



If you don't remember, back in 2015 LastPass reported a major data breach. At that time PC World reported:
The good news is it appears hackers didn’t get away with anyone’s encrypted password vaults. Still, it certainly sounds like a bad breach, but the consensus among security experts is that it could’ve been a lot worse.
I'm beginning to think that was either a lie, or LastPass didn't realize how deep their breach really was. Why do I think that? For three reasons:

  1. The number of spam emails I've received from these guys
  2. Many of them show different passwords. If it was just one or two sites that were breached I'd see a pattern of the same passwords.
  3. Many of the passwords these guys show (although not the actual passwords, but are close enough that I can tell that they have my actual password info somewhere) are randomly generated. I only use such randomly generated passwords with LastPass.
So what did I do about it? First, I reset my LastPass master password again, all of my financial account passwords, all of my social media passwords, online store account passwords, etc. I also went through LastPass's security challenge tool to update old passwords, or any passwords I had previously re-used in multiple sites inadvertently.

I had changed my LastPass credentials shortly after the breach in 2015 as directed by LastPass, but at the time believed the reports that none of the vault password information was touched. I'm starting to think that may not be accurate. If you agree with me, then it's time to change all of your passwords too.

Have you received any of these emails? What are you doing about it? Let us know in the comments!

Jan 7, 2019

Cloud Computing: What's Holding You Back?

The fastest growing SMBs have embraced the Cloud as a method to address four main IT Challenges:

  • High capital costs;
  • Skill shortage;
  • Scalability as the business grows, and;
  • Innovation as the business matures.

Results are positive. Surveys indicate that:

  • 53% of SMB's using cloud technologies are more likely to experience a rise in revenue.
  • 85% of businesses believe the cloud-enabled their business to scale and grow faster.

Organizations are finding that Cloud computing provides immediate access to the tools needed to digitally transform their business and improve customer experience.

Many businesses are still reluctant to make the move to the Cloud despite these advantages. The reluctance to migrate is particularly evident in Western Canada, where we've seen cloud adoption be approximately 25% less than the rest of Canada. So, what's holding you back?

Security Exposure

Security is cited as the number one objection to Cloud for 49% of organizations (IDC 2017). Should you be concerned? The security investments made by the major Cloud providers is significant and has created cloud platforms in which security breaches, due to vendor error are rare. In fact, the Cloud has proven to be more secure than most non-cloud environments.

Network Response

A key detractor to cloud for customers in Western Canada is the worry that network connectivity will be insufficient to provide the type of response time and security that end users are accustomed to. With the major public Cloud providers located in Eastern Canada, it is understandable that network connectivity options should be well understood before proceeding. Several networking options exist to address the need for high bandwidth, security and connectivity to Cloud, including solutions based in Saskatchewan.

Service Availability

Service availability, including response time and user downtime, is a concern due to the perceived loss of control over the computing environment. To mitigate this concern, public Cloud vendors provide service levels for all their products with financial credits provided if they are not achieved. The robust engineering of the Cloud environment is such that high availability is consistently achieved. In a worst-case scenario, organizations can further protect critical applications by configuring them to automatically failover to alternate data centres should a Cloud data centre go offline.

Cloud Costs

There is a general perception that services in the Cloud are more expensive than in the non-Cloud environment. This is often raised when the comparison between Cloud and non-Cloud platforms does not accurately reflect all the costs that make up the non-Cloud infrastructure.

With all the non-Cloud costs in the table above considered, there's an almost 50% reduction in support and maintenance costs when the Cloud is chosen. When doing a financial comparison or Cloud ROI, it's also important to take into account the increased revenue that will take place as you drive your digital transformation results using Cloud services.

Getting Started

It can seem daunting when trying to decide how to get started. The best place to start often with consulting a trusted partner with experience in Cloud migrations. Cloud migration requires skill and experience; often organizations who tackle this transition by themselves find it difficult and time-consuming.

If you want to know how to get started but aren't sure where to begin, reach out and let's grab a coffee. We can discuss your particular needs and help define a path forward for your organization to embrace all that the Cloud has to offer.




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