Resources

Weekly Tech Tidbit – Remote Risks and Compliance Part II – Secure and Reliable Communications

Last week I talked about the importance of Cloud Backup in our new remote teaching and learning and back-office school environments.

This week I am going to talk about secure and reliable communications.

The reality is that the number one threat to your network is your users clicking on attachments or web links that lead to bad places that can potentially launch an attack against the user and ultimately your physical and cloud network resources.

Tech Tidbit – Closing Time. Protocols and Processes that have to go!

For the last few years Microsoft has been talking about "Modern" this or "Modern" that.  In the quest for improved security they are agressively trying to move everyone to more modern protocols.  The impending LDAPS changes are an example of this.   However, there are more processes and protocols that they are urging you to retire.

Tech Tidbit – Solving the present building access issue – Co-Managed IT

Every day I am talking to a school district remotely and the conversation goes something like this, "We can't get into our buildings" or "We have very limited access to our buildings".

One thing to keep in mind is that with our Paladin Sentinel Monitoring service we are monitoring your equipment 24x7x365.   In addition, subscribing to that service lays the foundation to allow us to provide remote support.

Tech Tidbit – Your Battle – Deny Lateral Movement vs. Momentum

I constantly harp on denying the bad guys access to your network, and if they are inside already, denying lateral movement.  At the last Tech Talk, I mentioned that I am watching many of the Paladin Sentinel Monitoring sites just RDP into all the servers with the true Domain Admin Administrator ID - just like we did 15 years ago.

Cisco Pandemic Assistance for K-12 – Free Security Options For Your Endpoints

Cisco is trying to do their part during the Pandemic.

If you are a Cisco AMP, Cisco DUO, Cisco Umbrella, or Cisco AnyConnect client, Cisco is allowing you to increase your license counts - without cost to the district - until July 1, 2020.  This allows you to truly do the right thing for all your endpoints to keep your district as secure as possible to finish out this school year.

Tech Tidbit – Two ways to sanely maintain remote endpoints

The reality of many K-12 school districts is that you either have handed out or are handing out laptops to teachers and critical staff to get through this quarantine.   All those great tools you had been using: WSUS, SCCM, and KACE are now functionally useless for those remote users.

Weekly Tech Tidbit – Secure Remote Access

As I write this on Tuesday, March 24, 2020, I do hope that this message finds you well and staying safe as we all adapt to our new normal under the COVID-19 regulations. We all hope this lasts as short a time as possible. Rest assured that the team at CSI seamlessly transitioned into our remote work environment, and we continue to monitor your networks and respond to your service requests as usual.

Weekly Tech Tidbit – NIST Significantly Changes Password Recommendations

Earlier this month, on March 2, NIST formalized a significant number of changes to its password recommendations as part of the final release of its updated Digital Identify Guidelines document or NIST publication SP 800-63-3.  The full document which includes three additional sister documents (800-63A, 800-63B & 800-63C) is here:

https://csrc.

Weekly Tech Tidbit Extra – VPN Best Practices

As part of our client school district's response for Corona virus preparedness, we see an uptick in requests for VPN access into the school district's networks.  With the potential increase in VPN users and remote connections into your district's systems, we thought now would be a good time to remind you of a few best practices around VPN use:

 

 

Each user should have a unique VPN account, no sharing of ID’s between users or departments.

Weekly Tech Tidbit – How to take the first steps to protect your school district

We have all had at a flood of information come at us in the last nine months regarding ransomware, malware, and cyber security options from all different quarters (cyber-seminars, vendors, various government agencies, and from even yours truly). It is easy to see how one could get a bit lost as to how to decide what the right first step is to improve the security posture of your school district.

Weekly Tech Tidbit – Remote Risks and Compliance Part I – Cloud Backup

Now that we have shifted to predominantly remote workers and remote teaching and learning, we have a number of new challenges as well as increased threats.

Challenge #1 - Remote File Access.   The solution is moving files from traditional home directories and traditional common drives to cloud-based shared folders and home directories.

CSI is pleased to announce that we are an approved reseller under the NCPA Cooperative Purchasing Alliance

Through our partnership with Synnex Corporation CSI is an approved vendor on the NCPA national purchasing contract which is a legal alternative for our public sector and K-12 clients to either the NYS OGS or Federal GSA IT Schedule 70 contracts.NCPA (National Cooperative Purchasing Alliance)

NCPA  is a leading national government purchasing cooperative working to reduce the cost of goods and services by leveraging the purchasing power of public agencies in all 50 states.

Quick tips to save on cloud costs

Small- and medium-sized businesses are adopting cloud technologies. However, some business owners may not be aware of certain hidden costs. These costs don’t seem much at first, but they can eventually snowball. Follow these five tips to keep the cloud from breaking the bank. No standalones Cloud services come in various shapes and sizes, many […]

Reasons to automate small-business marketing

Over the years, marketing automation has become more accessible to small businesses. Thanks to innovative cloud solutions, large and small enterprises can reap the benefits of automating tedious marketing tasks. Here are a few advantages to automating your small business’s marketing efforts. Inbound lead assignment When you have phone calls, emails, and meetings piling up, […]

7 Customization features to try on Windows 1o

Windows 10 offers a wealth of customization features designed to provide users with a truly personalized and intuitive experience. Whether it’s changing the color of your windows or rearranging the tiles on the Start menu, these features will make your Windows PC a better match for your needs and preferences. Check out some of them […]

Helpful tips for keeping your email safe

Email is one of the best things the internet has given us. We use it to sign up for websites, apply for jobs, make payments, get in touch with friends and family, and many more. However, your email is also one of the platforms hackers can exploit to steal information or launch malware attacks. Here […]

Useful tips to prolong your laptop battery life

It’s difficult to gain momentum at work when your laptop constantly notifies you that it’s running out of juice. And if there’s not a power outlet in sight, your device will soon be nothing more than a cold slab of metal and plastic. Here are some helpful tips to prolong your laptop battery life so […]

Calculating the total cost of a VoIP system

Cost is always an important factor to consider when it comes to technological investments. Especially with Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone systems, you have to be careful that investing in one doesn’t put you way over budget. Even if that phone system comes with a host of features, it’s important that you evaluate not […]

The difference between Groups, Yammer, and Teams

Yammer, Outlook Groups, and Microsoft Teams have plenty in common. They’re all Microsoft 365 tools designed for sharing files and communicating with colleagues. So what differentiates them from one another, and when should you use which? Let’s take a quick look. Outlook Groups With Outlook Groups, every member gets a shared inbox, calendar, project planner, […]

Top 5 tips for a successful web conversion

Grabbing people’s attention and converting them to prospective customers is the goal of any professional website. To do that, you need to create a terrific-looking and user-friendly site that encourages visitors to sign up for eBooks, consultations, and other services. Be sure your website follows these five rules that make it easier to convert visitors. […]

Choosing the best MSP for your business

Technology underpins nearly every aspect of modern business processes. The problem is that managing technology can be complex and tedious. This is where managed IT services providers (MSPs) come in. Whether a company needs software to record customers’ data, network infrastructure management, or cloud technology, MSPs can provide these services and much more. MSPs defined […]

Out of sight, out of mind (so clear your desktop now)

It’s simple, really: if your desktop is messy, then it’s more difficult to use. Don’t waste time and energy struggling to function — literally clean up your act by heeding our tips on decluttering your desktop. 1. Arrange, sort, and prioritize Before you go about deleting everything from your desktop, think about what you really […]