Issue No. 15January 2010

The Wild Wild Web

Protect Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself
By Danny Kazmarek

Wild-WestMany of you may have heard me refer to the World Wide Web (WWW) as the Wild Wild Web and chuckled a bit.  The Internet bears attributes similar to the American Wild West; armed and dangerous with little policing. Sounds kind of funny, but it’s a serious matter when your identity is stolen, or tens of thousands of dollars is siphoned from your bank, or your PC won’t boot and you’ve got tons of work to do.  This is why educating yourself is so important while surfing the Wild Web.

The Internet is an awesome conduit of knowledge, communication, collaboration, and useless information.  For a prime example, click on the Chargers video in the sidebar.

But with such power, one must show discipline, young grasshopper. You should arm yourself with the most recent anti-virus and anti-spyware software, firewall, and security patches; but you still need to educate yourself. Hackers and virus creators will always be one step ahead of the security companies writing preventive software.  So don’t count on your anti-virus software or firewall to protect you from everything. 

Be smart!  Educate yourself on what an email phishing attempt is. CNET is a good place to start reading up. Don’t access your banking or credit card accounts from shared or public computers like at hotels and cyber cafes. Don’t install those crazy apps on Facebook.  Don’t install free software if the origin isn’t trustworthy. Don’t share a PC with your kids, and especially don’t let them use your work laptop. Review your search results before clicking on links. Google doesn’t always police and check its results to make sure they don’t guide you into a spyware saloon.

For businesses, if employees don’t need access to the Internet, cut it off completely. In many cases, this can be done by your IT staff in minutes and doesn’t require any special hardware or software. If your employees need access to only certain websites, there are affordable solutions that can accommodate a ‘yes list’ only.

I wish I could say things will get better, but on the contrary, Internet security threats will continue to increase. According to the latest issue of SC Magazine, phishing attempts are on the rise and nearing 20,000 new scams per month.  Protect yourself with up-to-date security tools and education.

Product Spotlight: KTS Mail Washing
By Kevin Moore
With the increasing number of phishing scams and viruses entering networks via SPAM, the best way to defend your network is to block these emails from ever reaching end-users’ inbox.  According to CNET, 90.4% of all email today is SPAM.  Not only is this a nuisance, it can lead some very unwanted effects.  The two major issues with SPAM today are a lack of productivity and an increased chance of becoming infected with a virus.  While it may only take a few seconds to delete an unwanted email, if you consistently have to do so, the time adds up.  At the same time, if people are not careful in screening their emails, they run the chance of being infected with a virus which can cause a much more severe amount of downtime.  
Here at Kazmarek Technology Solutions, Inc. we have the answer to your problem: Mail Washing.  Our Mail Washing package makes email more secure and productive by blocking SPAM and viruses from ever making it to your inbox. Our email content filtering is a cost-effective way to enforce email security.  Not only do you get the same level of SPAM filtering as the company Google uses, but if for any reason your email server goes down, KTS Mail Washing stores copies of all incoming email. Once the server is back up and running, it will deliver them to your inbox.  
Call KTS today to add Mail Washing to your IT services!

What’s KTS Up To?
Microsoft Virtualization Competency
By Shayne Comey

As of next month, Kazmarek Technology Solutions, Inc. will be a Microsoft certified virtualization solutions provider. Acquiring the Microsoft virtualization solutions competency gives KTS and our clients access to the resources and tools to help our clients grow their businesses with Microsoft virtualization products.  The Microsoft virtualization solutions competency is a program designed for Microsoft Partners who have proven their proficiency in consulting with customers and deploying virtualization solutions to help customers save costs and increase operational efficiency. 

One of the fastest-growing and hottest technologies to hit the market in the past few years is known as virtualization. Virtualization comes in many forms. Server virtualization allows you to run many versions of server-based software and operating systems (even non-Microsoft versions) on a single computer. Each one of these versions is isolated from the other versions running on the same machine through the virtual architecture. This arrangement allows an organization to have a lower total cost of ownership (TCO) while maintaining all the services and servers that are required to make the network operate properly. Other types of virtualization include application virtualization, desktop virtualization and storage virtualization.
How can virtualization help your business?
Virtualization is making an impact due to the many economic advantages it brings.  Microsoft virtualization enables multiple operating systems to run on a single server, reducing energy use by up to 90%.  Server consolidation via Microsoft virtualization allows for the optimum utilization of costly hardware resources that are often underutilized in a normal operating environment.
Other benefits include:
  • Improving disaster recovery and business continuity solutions
  • Testing and development of software applications in a virtual environment to examine their impact before deploying to the live production environment
  • Providing secure remote working environments to remote users
  • Supporting old applications that are not compatible with the latest edition of Windows, by providing a virtualized operating environment for the application to run within
Contact KTS today to find out how the latest virtualization solutions can benefit your business!