The Health & Well-being of Data
Scott Bidwell, ASI President/COO
My plan for this month's newsletter was to write a light-hearted article; something about summer and taking some time for personal and professional rejuvenation (June IS Professional Wellness month, after all). With CNN providing some background white noise, I prepared to put fingers to keyboard when I realized they were discussing ANOTHER data breach. This time it was the White House confirming that the Office of Personnel Management had suffered not one, but two data breaches which could affect 32 million Americans. Yep, that's the number they gave -- 32 MILLION. Data breaches and security struck me as a slightly more important subject, so I decided to backburner Plan A's article on professional wellness and dwell on the matter of the health and well-being of our corporate data.
Every type of business seems to be susceptible to a data breach of some sort, from governmental agencies to the very technology companies that create software applications and systems. If they can't block such infiltrations, with the resources they have, one has to ask what the rest of us are supposed to do, right?
The spotlight is also on breaches occurring through chinks in an organization's technological armor. This makes it easy to forget how exposed a company can be from physical breaches of security. As companies that service other companies in the storage, management and destruction of records and data, we tell our customers what steps to take to protect their information. Do we practice what we preach though? I think there are quite a few companies who do. Unfortunately, I also know there are many who do not. Below are a few resources you may find helpful as you do your own "health" assessment of your company's data.
PRISM InFocus Winter 2014: "Protecting Data"
NAID News Fall 2014: "Catch the Breach Notification Wave"
Physical Security: The Overlooked Domain
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Should you upgrade to Windows 10?
Kevin Baird, ASI Director of Programming & IT
Please note: The info below refers to Windows 10 Home version. We'll provide more info for Windows 10 for Business and MSDN as it becomes available.
Microsoft has started to distribute an icon that will appear on your taskbar (If you’re running Windows 8, possibly Windows 7 as well) which says you can use it to reserve your copy of Windows 10. This is not a virus. It’s a real thing from Microsoft.
Windows 10 is a free upgrade for Windows 7 and Windows 8 PC’s. If you want to fill out the form, Windows will automatically download Windows 10 for you upon its release, scheduled for July 29th. Here at ASI, we've tested Windows 10 and have found it to be an improvement to Windows 8. It also appears to be compatible with everything that runs on Windows 8, which is great news.
That said, we don’t recommend anyone update to Windows 10 right away. Generally, there are unforeseen problems that originate with any OS upgrade. After some time to let the dust settle after the release, we’ll upgrade PC’s as needed. If you have a PC that you don’t care that much about, such as a non-production or a secondary PC you'd like to try updating while knowing your primary PC is still available, go ahead and fill out the form for that PC. It's doubtful that Microsoft will update everyone at the same time, and they'll likely roll out the update over the course of the month of August. After that time, it's our guess that you'd then receive the update automatically.
For more info about Windows 10, check out the article "10 Questions, 10 Answers for Windows 10."
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Tech Tip: Veri-Shred, Excel & Easy Route Optimization
Jim Macmillan , ASI VP of Sales
Whether your route optimization software is MapPoint or something else, Veri-Shred puts you in the driver's seat when mapping your route.
Veri-Shred users know how well it utilizes MapPoint integration to automate route optimization. If your routing software of choice is something other than MapPoint, mapping your route with Veri-Shred can still be accomplished pretty easily. Simply export your map coordinates from Veri-Shred and bulk import them into your routing software of choice to be optimized.
This is an excellent option for those using routing software other than MapPoint.
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