Artificial Intelligence (Semi-) Simply Defined

Even though Alexa may have been programmed to have the ability to provide pithy comebacks, AI is still in its infancy, but expected to surge over the next few years. According to a new report from Tractica, interest in implementing AI systems is growing among companies and institutions around the world, and the revenue generated from the direct and indirect application of AI software is predicted to grow from $1.4 billion in 2016 to $59.8 billion by 2025.... But what exactly is Artificial Intelligence, anyway? 

Mobile device policies are more critical than ever. Here’s what you need to know…

One of the biggest vulnerabilities in endpoint security exists with mobile devices such as laptops, phones, and tablets. So, what can you do to mitigate the risk? Develop a mobile device or BYOD policy designed to protect your organization’s technology infrastructure and sensitive data. Here are 10 considerations:

Tech Safety While On Vacation

It’s hard enough to keep your technology secure when you’re working from the office, even harder when you work remotely, but while on vacation, it’s even trickier to keep your devices and data safe. A little bit of preparation and being a little tech security savvy can prevent headaches during your summer vacation and the rest of the year.

 

What keeps small business owners awake at night?

In a recent survey of more than 1,100 U.S. small businesses, Wasp Barcode Technologies produced a State of Small Business Report that reports on some of the distinct challenges that small businesses face in 2016. Inc. summarized the report which shows some of the top challenges for small businesses include hiring new employees (50 percent), increasing profit (45 percent), employee healthcare (43 percent), growing revenue (43 percent), and cash flow (36 percent).  

 

n a recent survey of more than 1,100 U.S. small businesses, Wasp Barcode Technologies produced a State of Small Business Report that reports on some of the distinct challenges that small businesses face in 2016. Inc. summarized the report which shows some of the top challenges for small businesses include hiring new employees (50 percent), increasing profit (45 percent), employee healthcare (43 percent), growing revenue (43 percent), and cash flow (36 percent).  

While many of these concerns will continue to keep entrepreneurs up at night over the next few years, according to Greg Petraetis, Chief Operating Officer, Midmarket and Partner Ecosystem, for SAP North America, there are four emerging issues that will surface over the next five years; keeping up with and managing technology is at the heart of several of these concerns.

What small business can learn from Amazon Books

Amazon opened its first New York City bookstore in Columbus Circle on May 25. The interesting twist from this giant company credited with putting so many traditional bookstores (such as the closed Border’s that was located nearby) is that it uses the local online data aggregated from its e-commerce customers to determine which books to carry its store.

DIY tech workarounds waste time, increase risk

There are times when I choose to spend time over money, like when I repair my old classic German cars versus taking them to a mechanic, but with only 16 waking hours to create value from each day, I need to make the most of each one. (And I like working on my old Volkswagen.) However, rolling my own music playing solution in lieu of buying an iPad to use the Sonos app is not the way I want to spend my time.
 

What do people really want? A personal connection.

In the book, Social, scientist Matthew Lieberman makes the case that our need to connect is as fundamental as our need for food and water. We need to connect and communicate with others, and I would suggest that this extends to how we connect with businesses and nonprofits. Is there a real person we can communicate with if we have questions or need assistance? Is that a satisfying experience? And, are the organizations that understand the basic human need to communicate and provide human interaction more successful?

Why Small Business Matters

There are 28 million small businesses in the U.S. They are the backbone and spirit of our economy. In fact, they are the very reason Sinu was formed back in 2000 because we wanted to give small businesses an edge by providing the enterprise-level technology and expertise which big business could afford, but were out of reach of most smaller organizations.

3 Reasons to Recycle Your Technology

With today’s hardware replacement cycle growing shorter and shorter each year, many organizations find themselves with a closet full of old solutions. You don’t want to just throw them out or donate them, as they may contain sensitive data and, if they end up in a land fill, they can release dangerous substances such as lead and mercury into the soil and water supplies.

With hack threat deadline looming, Apple users should secure their data today

Recent hack threats on iCloud have caused concern about the security of the data of over 782 million iCloud users. According to several media sources, hackers are demanding Apple pay a ransom in bitcoin or they'll expose millions of iCloud account credentials and could potentially remotely erase customer iPhones, iPads, or Macs, causing a catastrophic loss of personal data. With so many people using their Apple devices in the workplace, this could result in huge losses of business data and productivity.

Be wary of unknown USB sticks

Be wary of the USB stick you plug into your computer. These small flash-memory drives used to easily share files from computer to computer have become one of the easiest ways for hackers to install malicious software and gain access to a computer.

There are three ways these malicious attackers use USB sticks to compromise your data and hardware. 

 

How safe is your online bank account? Many banks not using a basic security measure.

You may be surprised to learn that your bank may not have some of the data security systems in place that are now standard for your email and social media accounts. One of the concerns is that many of the largest and most popular banks, including TD Bank, Citibank and Citizens, do not use a simple but effective method of protecting online accounts called two-factor authentication to prevent unauthorized logins. With so much at risk, why don’t the banks use this standard technology to help protect our data? The answer may not comfort you.

‘High touch’ over high tech: What people want from customer service today by Larry Velez, co-founder and CTO

For decades, most businesses have been working off the same customer service model. You help someone complete a purchase and trouble shoot a few simple problems. But, today’s customers need more. They are coming to customer service with more complex issues and only after trying to resolve problems themselves.

Thank you for making Sinu one of North America’s top managed service providers!

CRN®, a brand of The Channel Company, has named Sinu to its 2017 Managed Service Provider (MSP) 500 list in the Pioneer 250 categoryWe could not continue to grow without your referrals, which give us the opportunity to support additional organizations and help them reach their goals through affordable IT solutions. Thank you for your support and loyalty. 

What small businesses need to know about ransomware (and why backups are so important)

Ransomware is a family of malware that blocks access to a PC, server or mobile device, or encrypts all the data stored on that machine. It's typically delivered via malicious email or infected third-party websites. To regain access or control of the data, the user must pay a ransom — typically via bitcoin. The encryption is unbreakable and simply removing the malware will not solve the problem. The victim is forced to pay for the unique software key that will unlock everything. Malwarebytes reports that 60 percent of all malware observed last year was ransomware.

Do you have control of your IT assets? These stories may give you pause…

An employee or consultant leaves (often dismissed) and takes critical information with them, such as sales reports, prospect and vendor lists, or instructions to keep the HVAC running at just the right temperature. It’s disruptive, and can take significant time and resources to retrieve. But, when someone has critical information or access to your IT, it can be a nightmare and create real risk for your business.

Webinar featuring Sinu’s Larry Velez: “New Administration, New Risks? How To Protect Your Nonprofit’s Data”

The 2016 election brought digital security and surveillance into tight focus. The webinar, “New Administration, New Risks? How To Protect Your Nonprofit’s Data,” held with Idealware and Fission Strategy, encourages organizations to rethink their security. Panelists from several organizations, including Sinu co-founder and CTO, Larry Velez, Idealware board member Leon Wilson of the Cleveland Foundation, and Shauna Dillavou of Community Red, contribute to the conversation about keeping your nonprofit data safe while bringing more productivity and safety to your team and constituents.