Copeland News - July, 2013
We welcome you to this summer edition of Copeland News.
In our commercial world, technology is at work everywhere and is the engine that drives business. It is always healthy to step back and take a fresh look at where you can apply available technologies to better compete in the today's marketplace.
While browsing this newsletter, if you think of anything that you would like to discuss as it applies to your situation, never hesitate to drop us a note. We are here to help and serve you in any way we can.
In this issue of Copeland News
App Your Business
We recently brought to market a new app for United Precious Metal Refining, which focuses on both product information and refining lot requests from their customers. This app is
available for both iOS (iPhone/iPad) and Android via their corresponding app stores. Additional features include a scrap gold value calculator and real-time gold, silver, platinum
and palladium pricing - essential tools for those in the precious metals industry. We will continue to work with United, adding more functionality and product information to
this app in later releases.
Like United Precious Metal Refining, you may want to consider a company-based app for your business. As you contemplate this, really think about who will be using this app and what they may expect in a mobile solution. Phone apps need to provide real value to be effective. While you want to promote your business through the application, the app cannot simply be a "digital advertisement," which would not come over in a positive light to your customers and prospects.
Once your ideas start flowing on what your app may include, we can help you size up the project and work with you on presentation ideas. You app's content, whether static or dynamic (database driven), can be rolled into into a business-focused app and made available in both the iOS and Android marketplaces.
If you would like to know more about mobile App possibilities for your business, please drop us an email.
Upgrade Your Passwords
One of the lingering issues in technology that continues to grow over time is the need to keep your systems safe. While there are plenty of security and antivirus utilities to manage these threats, one of the most overlooked issues (and the most important) is password management. We all want to look the other way when it comes to creating better passwords, but everyone needs to take this issue seriously, as systems are compromised worldwide every day.
Simple passwords are easy to remember and use. However, these simple passwords are also easy to find and use for an infiltrator as well. That being said, we all need to review our passwords across all systems and start assigning stronger passwords that are more stringent and tougher to crack.
Strong passwords typically employ these attributes:
- Are at least eight characters long.
- Do not contain your user name, real name, or company name.
- Do not contain a complete word.
- Are significantly different from previous passwords.
- Contain uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.
You can create a strong password by remembering a phrase such as, "My Daughter's Birthday is January 18, 1989," which can become a password like "mDbdJ18!89".
An effort should also be made to not reuse any username/password combinations across multiple sites. If your email is compromised, for example, the hacker suddenly has access to all sites where you use this same combination (banks, PayPal, Facebook, Amazon), and these secondary attacks happen within minutes. Consider prepending or appending a few letters to your password to make it unique to the site ("mDbdJ18!89FB" for Facebook, "mDbdJ18!89AZ" for Amazon, "mDbdJ18!89BA" for Bank of America, "mDbdJ18!89PP" for PayPal).
We all need to get to a point of using stronger passwords. Please consider stepping up your password strategy by employing the ideas outlined above.
Odds & Ends
SSD's, or Solid State Disk Drives, are becoming more popular. Instead of the physical nature of rotating platters and read/write heads, SSD's are just that - completely electronic hard disk drives with no moving parts, creating a fast and stable disk ecosystem. You are likely to be using an SSD in your systems over the next five years.
| Touch screen monitors are seen in use today with the release of Windows 8.
Windows 8 and all successors will be doing more with touch screen monitors
priced from $500 to $1500. They typically support "multi-touch" - the ability to have multiple touches to the monitor which allows for "pinch" and swipe gestures (example). Additionally, many All-In-Ones now feature a touch screen as well. These are complete PC's built for the desktop.
An upgrade to Windows 8 (Windows 8.1) will be released later this year. Windows RT, as you may know, is the version of Windows 8 that runs on the Surface tablet. While Word, Excel and PowerPoint were available under Windows RT at its initial launch, Outlook was notably absent. Outlook RT will be available in this Windows 8.1 release, which allows the Surface Tablet to be at least a consideration for business users when it is released.
Office 2003 is now over 10 years old, and it has certainly shown its age. Since many problems exist with Office 2003, it may be in your best interest to upgrade any desktops using Office 2003 to Office 2013.
Microsoft never calls end-users at home unless they are responding to a support call you initiated. We've heard of many recent scams where scammers claiming to work for Microsoft talk users into believing their PC is infected and get them to install support software on their PC. They show them how infected their PC is and start asking for money to fix it. If this happens to you or anyone you know (to the point of actually installing the software), hang-up the phone, disconnect the Internet connection, and clean up the PC with anti-spyware tools as fast as you can. This scam appears to be going nationwide, so warn others about this as well.
Google Glass is coming soon. Google Glass is an Android-based smartphone system that is worn like eyeglasses instead of being held. While Google Glass is currently in prototype mode, the device is very interesting and could change the way that we interact with our systems and the world around us.
HIPPA and other security requirements now dictate that Email encryption must be used when sending data in specific circumstances across many industries. This secure email makes sure that only the recipient designated in the To: or Cc: lines will be able to read to the content of the email. Let us know if this applies to you and you want to further discuss solutions with us.
Please encourage all of your users to review SPAM REPORTS and SPAM FOLDERS each and every day. With increased SPAM activity, there are more emails that may be legit that can fall into SPAM folders.
Many smaller businesses still use Email POP accounts. POP accounts bring plenty of issues in our digital world today, especially SPAM. It may be time to consider Microsoft's Office365, which is Microsoft Exchange in the Cloud. Office365 is a great solution for smaller organizations.
Facebook has expanded its use of hashtags, which can be an advantage for you in marketing organization. A hashtag is a word or a phrase prefixed with the symbol #.
Social networking services such as Twitter, Instagram, Flickr, Tumblr, Google+ and now Facebook use hashtags to categorize content and allow users to search related posts
using the same hashtags.
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