Routers and Basic Connectivity

routers

Majority of companies utilize some sort of wireless internet connectivity, also known as Wi-Fi, during their daily business operations. When discussing the different speeds of routers and the data they can transfer, many do not fully understand what this all means. Continue reading to learn more about dual band routers and how your organization can benefit from this information.

What is a Dual Band Router and How Does it Work?

To begin with, a dual band router connects to your modem and can transmit two different speeds of wireless connections simultaneously, a 2.4 GHz and a 5.0 GHz. Obviously, one connection, 5.0 GHz, is faster than the other, making it optimal for specific tasks. Although it varies, typically a 2.4 GHz connection can support speeds up to 600 Mbps while a 5.0 GHz connection is capable of supporting speeds up to 1300 Mbps. These speeds are considered the maximum. The speed you actually get will all depend on the technology you are using and the specific transfer protocols that it utilizes. 

As previously mentioned, these speeds are ideal conditions and may never be fully achieved. Therefore, we recommended that you use both types of networks simultaneously, in order to help you get the most out of your wireless technology. 

What should run on the 2.4 GHz connection?

The 2.4 GHz connection can be beneficial as its range is larger and it can go through walls and solid objects much easier. Unfortunately, due to the fact that it can be used by so many devices, the connection ends up being poor, making it not the best choice when it comes to connectivity.

What should run on the 5.0 GHz connection?

Clearly, the 5.0 GHz connection is much more ideal in comparison as it has higher wireless speeds and reliability. On the other hand, this type of connection uses short range signals that are not able to penetrate through walls and objects. To make up for this, some people use signal boosters to improve the range of their connection. If you can invest in this technology, it is worth it to have enhanced reliability and stability of the internet connection.

What is the Best Connection for You?

In the majority of situations, a 5.0 GHz connection will be better than a 2.4 GHz. Although it is important to keep in mind that some devices do not give much of a choice with which connection should be utilized. Some devices are simply not compatible with others, forcing you to choose one over the other. A dual band router is commonly used in both the consumer and business environment to help alleviate this issue since some devices require the reliable connection of a 5.0 GHz, while others can thrive on the slower, 2.4 GHz connection. It can be helpful to keep some devices off the 5.0 GHz network to help improve the quality and speed of the overall connection.

If you notice that some devices are losing their connections more frequently than you would want, you can always make adjustments, provided that the device is compatible with both networks. A wired connection is typically preferred for situations where reliability is an absolute must.

If your business needs wireless internet connectivity installed or if you want to learn more information, you know you can contact us at 4 Corner IT for all of your needs. Call us today at 954.474.2204.

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Received a Random Link? DO NOT CLICK ON IT!

bad link

If you ever receive random texts or emails from PayPal (or any other business, for that matter) telling you they suspended your account and now require you to authenticate your identity with an unknown link, then you should definitely think twice before clicking on that link. This is a common method that hackers use to break into accounts, especially those account holders that fall for this phishing scam. There is a better alternative to investigate this issue to see where it leads. It is important to access your account the way you normally would instead of clicking on that link.

If you were in this position, what would you do?

It is pretty safe to say that no one wants to fall for a phishing scam; but, at the same time, it can be very tempting to trust the message to make sure there is nothing wrong with your account.

The best approach is simple, but definitely not one that we would intuitively think to do.

Instead of clicking on the link provided in the text or email, open up a new web browser tab and login to the website, the same way you normally would in order to access your account. It does not matter the type of account you are trying to log into, whether it be your bank, your favorite online retailer, or any website that you have an account with. The practice of logging into the site directly, rather than using the link given, is simple and easy to do. It will also help keep you from being a victim of a phishing attack.

Let Us Help Your Team and Keep Them Safe

4 Corner IT can help you and your company choose the best tools and resources to keep everyone safe from security and phishing attacks. Our professionals can help build your business’ defenses and offer training to all members of your team, including how to identify potential threats and the best practices to keep safe from these attacks. For more information or to get started today, contact us at 954.474.2204. 

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Changes in Business Operations Since the COVID-19 Pandemic

business operations

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses have switched to either complete remote or hybrid work. This has made a significant impact on the way employees choose to work. Some employees have returned in a more limited capacity, while others have decided not to return to the office. As a result of this trend, a decrease in the amount of usable office space has been reported by several businesses. 

Robin Powered conducted a survey called 2022 Office Space, where they asked several business owners and/or managers various questions related to the use of their office space in the workplace after the COVID-19 pandemic, remote and hybrid work, and the Great Resignation. The results they found were quite interesting. 

Some details from the report include:

  • 46 percent of those surveyed no longer use more than half of their available office space.
  • 11 percent of respondents use all of their available office space.
  • 48 percent of those surveyed report their use of open office space has decreased since the beginning of the pandemic.
  • 60 percent of those currently using half or less of their available office space have since downsized before the pandemic.
  • 46 percent of respondents plan to reduce their available office space in 2023.
  • 59 percent of those surveyed are planning to cut their office space by half or even more than half.

From the survey, 83 percent of those respondents indicated that these changes were made to reduce costs and save more money. About 73% of respondents plan to transition to hybrid business operations instead of laying off employees or other cost-effective practices. 

Aside from interviewing business owners and facilities managers, Robin Powered also surveyed the employees that work at those companies and received more information on how they prefer to work. 

  • 37 percent of employees surveyed are working full time at the office. 
  • 61 percent of the employees surveyed have some type of hybrid work environment.
  • 87 percent of hybrid employees report spending two or more days a week at the office.

A common question among business owners and managers is how can we help employees to the best of our abilities with remote and/or hybrid business operations increasing significantly? Business owners and facilities managers must also consider the substantial cost savings associated with remote and hybrid work. 

One of the best ways to assist you through this process while making changes to your own business operations is working with an IT service provider, like us at 4 Corner IT, to ensure your technology can support some of these changes. We can assist you and your company in acquiring and implementing the right technology to sustain remote and/or hybrid business operations. 

For any questions or to learn more about what we can do for your company, please contact us today at 954.474.2204.

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Haunted Office – A Phone Story

haunted office

The following story and events are true, however, to protect the families of the innocent, all names have been changed. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or businesses, is purely coincidental.

This is a transcript of a police interview with Stephen Corey. Taken by Det. Giles Gerald at 11:05 a.m. this morning. 

Det. Gerald – Please state your name and title. 

Mr. Corey – I’m the founder and CEO for North Shore Software Inc. 

Det. Gerald – Tell me what happened. 

Mr. Corey – We’ve been at the 1692 Osborne Ave location since May 10th. It was rainy, but it was actually pretty warm that morning, if you recall? I got to the office at 6:30; which is an hour and a half early as I like to have some time to myself before the staff arrives. I found it strange that there were several cars in the parking lot, but it’s not really unheard of to have cars in the lot from people that get a ride from the bar just across the street on Sundays this time of year. 

I didn’t think much of it as I gathered my things and went up to the office, but the first real curious thing was that the door to the office was already unlocked. This is Monday, mind you, ya’know, and there have been maybe one or two instances in the thirteen years I’ve owned this company that someone has beaten me to the office on Monday. I’m always the first one there; especially on Monday. So, I suddenly got a very cold feeling and was extremely worried that we’d had a break in. So instead of just barging in and potentially putting myself in a bad situation, I decided to go back to my car and call the office to make sure that I was just being paranoid and that there was, ya’know, people there who were, um, ya’know, were supposed to be there.

The phone rang twice and then Sarah answered. “Thank you for calling North Shore Software, this is Sarah, how can I direct your call?” 

Det. Gerald – This is Sarah Glanvill? 

Mr. Corey – Yes, she’s our receptionist.

Det. Gerald – Continue

Mr. Corey – I was immediately, ya’know, put at ease when I heard her voice, so I hung up without saying anything and headed into the office. Mind you, this was a very brief stretch of time; less than a minute or two. I got back to the door and went to open it and it was locked. Obviously, this was alarming, but I thought that, ya’know, it being Halloween and all that, someone was trying to mess with me a bit. So my first thought was to pound on the door. At this point, I wasn’t so much scared or annoyed, but was trying to be a good sport. I thought that Sarah, who is one of my longest-tenured employees, was just having a little fun with me. After a few seconds, there was an identical pounding on the other side of the door. 

I remember saying something like, “Okay, okay, this is fun,” as I went to unlock the door with my key. Mind you, the plan is to move over to electronic locks pretty soon, but right now we still have the wood door that came on the place with your typical locks, ya’know. Well I put my key in and it won’t turn. Now I’m starting to get annoyed, because all I want to do is start the day and I’m thinking this prank is going a little too far. I pound on the door again, and again the knocks are returned. You’ll see all this on the CCTV, but I tried to unlock the door a couple other times with no luck.  I then call to end the charade and have Sarah, who at that time I’m completely convinced is doing all this to mess with me, unlock the door.

So, as I went around the back to get in the building, I’m annoyed. I call up and she answers “Thank you for calling North Shore Software, this is Sarah, how can I direct your call?” I’m like Sarah, “This isn’t funny anymore. Let me in the building!” I get nothing, but “North Shore Software, this is Sarah, how can I direct your call?” At this point, I’m at the back door. I hang up, not finding the humor in this whole thing, and I go to unlock the back door. I unlock the door and I get halfway in and the door slams and locks. 

At this point I’m just standing there angry and dumbfounded. I try the lock and the key won’t turn. It’s as if the locks were magically changed. I start pounding on the door yelling and swearing. Just then I see headlights shining down the alley on the south side of the building. They are coming from the parking lot. I walk toward the parking lot and the lights go off and as I get to the front of the building. I hear: “Good morning, Mr. Corey. Happy Halloween.” It was Sarah. Even though I just saw her pull up, my blood is up, so I start yelling at her, asking her why she would keep the prank going so long? She has no idea what I am talking about. 

I start barraging her with questions, and accusations, really. She starts to plead and cry, not only because she is being accused, but because she must have thought I was losing my damn mind. By now it’s 7 (a.m) or just after and I’m in a frenzy. I put my phone on speakerphone and Sarah, who is standing right in front of me, on the verge of tears, answers “North Shore Software, this is Sarah, how can I direct your call?”

I’m not so sure I’ve ever felt more insane and more sorry. She was as surprised as I was to hear her voice. I knew then that I was dealing with something I didn’t understand. I don’t believe in ghosts, but at that moment I thought for sure there was something paranormal going on, ya’know. I was, um, well, scared. Other employees began to pull up and I didn’t know what else to do so I called you guys and told them to go on home and work remotely until I knew what was going on.

Det. Gerald – What happened when the responding officers got there?

Mr. Corey – Obviously, I’m upset. At this point I was convinced there is someone in my place of business who isn’t supposed to be in there…or ya’know, something…There weren’t any lights on that I could see, but someone is actively trying to keep me out of the building. Officers Mather and Cotton came pretty fast and asked Sarah and I a bunch of questions about what was going on. I told them what I told you and they said if I let them in the building they would go in and see what is going on. I told them that the door was unlocked when I got there and then was locked and that someone slammed the back door on me after that. 

We went up to the door and the door unlocked fine. They went in and it was quickly pretty evident that no one broke in. They returned in minutes to say that there was nobody there and the place was clear. By then more officers had showed up and Sarah helped me by sending workers away as I looked around to see if I could figure out who the hell was there. The officers said the back door was not locked. Obviously, this surprised me. 

Det. Gerald – So who do you think was there?

Mr. Corey – That’s the thing, nothing is missing. I looked through the CCTV footage and I didn’t see anyone entering or leaving. The only thing I saw on those tapes was me struggling with the doors. Someone broke in; I’m sure of it, but I can’t tell you for certain who it was. 

Det. Gerald – Maybe you imagined it. Have you been dealing with more stress than usual?

(Just as Det. Gerald asked the question, an unknown number called Mr. Corey’s phone).

Mr. Corey – No. 

(Mr. Corey ignored the call)

No. I can’t really explain any of it, but I…

(Phone rings again)

Can I take this?

Det. Gerald – Yeah.

Mr. Corey – (into the phone) Hello? (inaudible; Mr. Corey then presses the speaker button on his phone) 

Phone – “…this is Sarah, how can I direct your call?” 

Mr. Corey – Who is this? Who is this??! (hangs up).

Det. Gerald – What was that?

Mr. Corey – That was Sarah the receptionist, but it obviously wasn’t. 

(Just then the phone rang again: Unknown number)

Det. Gerard – Give me the phone. 

(Mr. Corey handed the phone to the officer and he answers it and puts it on speaker)

This is Detective…

Phone – “…North Shore Software, this is Sarah, how can I direct your call?”

At 4 Corner IT, we can assist you and your company’s technological needs. You will have the peace of mind that you will get the end-to-end telephone customer service your business needs without the chance of being haunted by a human or specter. Contact us today at 954.474.2204 for more information. 

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How Secure are Security Questions?

security questions

What was the name of your first childhood friend? What was the city where your father was born? What is your favorite TV show? What was your mother’s maiden name? What was the name of your first pet? Here is the real question: what makes users think these types of security questions are going to assist in securing your important accounts?

Unfortunately, the truth is that the security questions heavily relied upon by businesses, websites, and other vital accounts, may have significant security issues. Continue reading to learn what these issues are and what other alternatives can be used instead.

What is so bad about security questions? 

In reality, security questions are just ineffective in today’s advancement of technology. Cybercriminals can quickly obtain necessary information from victims through phishing scams. More than likely, hackers will attempt to break into bank accounts. By successfully phishing a victim, the cyber attacker can obtain account information from the victim’s bank or financial institution, and possibly even the victim’s access credentials such as a username. With login information, such as a username, cybercriminals can quickly obtain their victim’s password. By clicking “Forgot Password?”, cyber attackers can see the possible security questions that the victim may have selected. Often, hackers can find these answers via social media accounts through the victim’s social media or even the social media of family and friends.

Many people are unaware that their online presence can tell complete strangers a lot about themselves. This is part of the danger that comes with posting personal information on social media. Privacy is also entrusted to the platforms that are used and the websites that are commonly used which can also fall victim to cyber criminals.

It gets worse…

A study by Google in 2015 revealed that answers to these security questions are easily predictable. 

For example, the study found that with one guess and the knowledge that the user speaks English, there was a 19.7% chance of correctly answering the security question, “What is your favorite food?”. There was a 24% chance of correctly answering the question, “What was your first teacher’s name?” with ten opportunities to answer and the knowledge that the user speaks Arabic. With ten guesses and the understanding that the user speaks Korean, there was a 43% chance of correctly answering the security question, “What is your favorite food?”. 

Some technical skill and luck are required on the hacker’s part but some of the answers to security questions can easily be found online. It is important to remember not to overshare personal information online. 

What can be used instead of security questions?

There are better alternatives to help keep businesses and accounts secure. Some companies utilize multi-factor authentication and/or biometrics. These options can make it easier for you to access your accounts while making it difficult for hackers. 

We, at WheelHouse IT, are here to help you keep your business secure from hackers and cyber attacks by implementing the best cybersecurity measures. To learn more, contact us at 954.474.2004.