When it comes to computers, it’s better to be safe than to risk losing or exposing your data. One of the simplest and most reliable ways to protect your Mac and all the information it contains is to lock it with a solid password.
It’s not enough to log off your Mac
Some people “lock” their Mac computer by logging off or shutting down the device. If you’re stepping away from your desk to use the bathroom or do something quick, both of these methods may prove to be time-consuming and downright impractical. But what can you do to prevent others from snooping on your computer?
Protect it with a password, of course.
Setting a password is easy
Locking your screen and setting a password with which to unlock it is easy.
- Go to the Dock or the Apple menu and from there, launch System Preferences.
- Click on the Security & Privacy pane.
- Go to the General tab and check the option that reads, “Require password after sleep or screensaver begins”.
- A dropdown menu will appear — choose Immediately.
This series of steps locks your computer every time you put it in sleep mode. To “awaken” your Mac, just input the password you set.
Get your Mac to sleep on command
The quickest way, by far, to put your Mac to sleep is to go to the Apple menu and click Sleep. You may also use these keyboard shortcuts:
- Option + Command + Power button — Puts the computer in sleep mode
- Option + Shift + Power button — Makes the screen go to sleep mode
For Mac models with a Touch ID sensor, you can use the same key combinations but replace the Power button with the Media Eject button.
You can also activate Hot Corners, which puts your monitor to sleep when you move your cursor to a specific corner of the screen. Access this feature through the following steps:
- In the Apple Menu, click on System Preferences.
- Click on Desktop and Screen Saver.
- Click on the Screen Saver tab.
- In the bottom right corner, select Hot Corners.
- Select which corner you’d like to use when putting your Mac in sleep mode
Looking for more Mac OS tips? Curious to learn about our Mac services? Call us today to learn more.
Healthcare trends point towards heavy reliance on tech such as telemedicine, mobile health solutions, surgical robotics, and most significantly, constantly evolving data management practices. Because of this, managed services providers (MSPs) are a valuable commodity.
Here are some things to look for in a managed services provider before you consider partnering with one.
They guarantee response times
When it comes to providing healthcare services, fast response is not the only thing that matters. You should always make sure that your provider guarantees response times, and that you’re able to contact them 24/7. In case something breaks or you come across technical issues in the dead of night, your best bet would be to contact your service provider, not to try fixing things on your own. Therefore, you need a provider who is able to give assistance whenever you need it most.
They support a business continuity plan
You risk putting your organization in jeopardy if your MSP can’t assist in your recovery from major outages or natural disasters. A business continuity plan is an absolute necessity in your healthcare organization — you simply can’t afford to lose all your valuable medical data in the event of a disaster. You need all the help you can get from your MSP to maintain redundant systems and manage automatic failovers.
They provide proactive security
In the world of healthcare data security, complying with HIPAA mandates is essential. Failing to meet regulations may result in huge fines, serious penalties, and even the withdrawal of your license to operate. The ideal managed services provider should offer core security services that include identity-based security and encryption, authorized privileges and access control, and data accountability and integrity.
They offer staffing services
Healthcare staffing shouldn’t be a hassle but, thanks to the changing dynamics of healthcare IT requiring a sophisticated workforce, that’s exactly what it can become. You need a managed services provider that assumes full responsibility for your clinical labor while providing you with a single point of contact for all your staffing operations, including account management, customer support, order placement, and more.
Choosing the right MSP can be time-consuming, but when you do make the switch, they can streamline your operations, reduce operational costs, and enhance workforce transparency.
If you want to learn how great technology and support can benefit your healthcare practice, get in touch with us today — we provide the perfect set of IT solutions and outstanding support to drive your organization forward.
Most of us now rely on our mobile devices to make work easier. To accommodate this, companies are adopting a bring your own device (BYOD) policy. For businesses that don’t want to adopt this policy, another popular option is choose your own device (CYOD).
Below is a brief overview of BYOD and CYOD.
This policy allows employees to bring their own devices to the office and use them for work-related tasks. While it focuses mostly on mobile devices, some companies allow users to bring their computers as well.
Companies cut costs on purchasing and maintaining computers when they adopt this policy. This also leads to higher productivity since employees are familiar with their own devices, eliminating the time and effort needed to adjust to a new operating system or technology.
The main drawback of this policy is the risk involved when you allow employees’ devices to access corporate resources. Companies adopting this policy need to ensure that they have a solid system in place that deals not only with security but how the devices should be used.
CYOD allows users to choose from a set of devices approved by the company.
These devices come with pre-installed business applications and protocols before an employee selects them. The main benefit of this policy is that the devices offered are highly compatible with the company’s current setup and come with security features to ensure that sensitive information is properly protected.
Depending on the policy, a company can either keep the device after an employee leaves or an employee can own the device after paying for it upfront. Some employees may not like the selection of available devices; that’s the major drawback of this policy. Unfortunately, hardware costs are also not completely eliminated, and employees will have to shoulder the costs for maintenance and repairs.
Which policy should companies adopt?
Companies should think about what works best for their current setup before choosing whether to adopt a BYOD or CYOD policy. A BYOD policy is ideal for companies operating on a tight or limited budget, while CYOD is perfect for companies who want to ensure their data is fully secure.
Contact us today to see how we can help you choose the right policy for your company.
Every business owner knows that having a business continuity plan is crucial to the success of their organization. However, when the unexpected does happen, companies tend to overlook how well employees can stick to the plan. To make sure your plan doesn’t go up in flames, here are five critical mistakes you must avoid.
Mistake #1: Failing to plan for employees
Companies that survive unexpected incidents are the ones that thought about their employees’ needs. Make sure you plan out everything from evacuation routes to emergency communication plans to make sure your employees have everything they need to survive the worst.
Discuss your strategy with your employees to let them know that you will be there to support them and their families in the event of a crisis. This way, your employees will have peace of mind knowing you and the company are there for them, and in turn, they will be there to support you.
Mistake #2: Using only words, not actions
Once you’ve documented your business continuity plan, you need to think about the small stuff to ensure your plan is executable. This includes logistical considerations like medical aid and monetary support.
Walk the walk and ensure your medical providers have made arrangements in advance. Have an assistance program in place to make sure your employees have access to people who can give them support in the event of an incident. Staff will remember if you provided them with care and support, and will remember even more clearly if you didn’t.
Mistake #3: Not showing your employees how the plan will work
While many business owners worry about downtime, they overlook the fact that explaining the plan and its execution to employees is critical to minimizing lost productivity.
As part of your maintenance program, include your employees in the testing process. Execute a live test to show your employees how they’re supposed to respond during a crisis incident. Who are they supposed to contact during a natural disaster? What are they supposed to say to clients? Where will they work when the primary office is down? These are just a few questions you need to have answered by the end of the live test.
Mistake #4: Forgetting to check on people after the incident
When an incident occurs, the first assessment most businesses make is to determine the impact it has on the company. But how do you execute that process without people? When disaster strikes, your employees will naturally want to be taking care of their families, not your business.
Ensure your crisis management team addresses people issues first. Where are they? What do I need to do for them? Are there any special employee needs you must address?
Mistake #5: Reacting rather than communicating
The most important thing to get right during a crisis is communication. It is imperative that your employees know you can provide them with the most up-to-date information.
Set up a toll-free hotline so your employees can call in for regular updates or create emergency channels where they can communicate with one another directly. With that, you provide consistent messaging, and you eliminate secondhand information and employee guesswork.
If your business continuity plan prioritizes your employees, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your team is still standing strong even if the worst should happen.
Want to learn more about business continuity and how it can help your business? Contact us today to see how we can help.
Leaving work PCs, tablets, and similar machines to accumulate dirt can lead to distractions, glitches, and worse, hardware failure. To avoid these situations, you must properly care for your employees’ work computers. Here are a few tips to keep them clean.
Cleaning desktop monitors
Employees spend many hours looking at their computer monitors, and a clean monitor makes it easier for them to do their tasks. The best way to clean your monitor is to turn it off first and gently wipe the screen with a microfiber cloth.
If there are still spots, try dipping the cloth in a tiny bit of water — make sure you don’t spray water onto the screen. Don’t press too hard on the screen, as this could damage your monitor’s pixels. Also, it is not a good idea to use paper products like paper towels or tissues, as they will not only leave a residue, but may also slightly scratch the monitor.
Cleaning mobile screens
Mobile and other touch screen devices will usually get your fingerprints all over them. The best way to clean these screens is also with a microfiber cloth. For tougher spots, dip the cloth in a small amount of water and then gently wipe the screen. Don’t splash water onto the device itself, as water could get inside, ruin internal components, and void the warranty.
Some people suggest rubbing alcohol to remove fingerprints and disinfect the device. While this will be okay for some screens, many manufacturers recommend against it because the alcohol can eat away at the protective film on some devices.
If you notice that there is a lot of dust or gunk on the edges of your screen, or even in cracks, you may need to take the device to a mobile shop for more thorough cleaning. Do not open the device yourself, as this could void the warranty.
Cleaning your keyboard
Because we use keyboards almost every day, they may get a bit grungy, with debris and dirt accumulating between the keys. Before you start cleaning, be sure to unplug the keyboard, or turn it off if it is wireless. To clean the upper parts of the keys — where your fingers strike the keys — try dipping cotton swabs into rubbing alcohol and then cleaning the keys with a gentle rub.
To clean between keys, you will need compressed air, which can be purchased at most office supply and computer stores. Spraying in between keys should be enough to get rid of most of the dust and grit.
Cleaning your mouse
Like the keyboard, the mouse can get quite dirty with grime from your fingers and dust. To clean a mouse, unplug it first then use cotton swabs dipped in rubbing alcohol to gently clean it. There’s no need to open your mouse, as most models are designed to not be opened by users.
Cleaning your laptop’s body
To clean your laptop’s body, turn it off, unplug it, and clean it with cotton swabs dipped in rubbing alcohol, or Mr. Clean Magic Eraser or a similar cleaning agent. Be careful not to scratch the sensitive components of the body.
Cleaning your computer tower
You may also clean the desktop computer’s tower by taking a slightly damp microfiber cloth and wiping down the front and sides of the tower. However, we strongly recommend avoiding the back and certain areas of the front, as there are ports and components that could be easily damaged.
As always, be sure to disconnect the power source and all wires before cleaning, as any water damage could ruin your computer.
Cleaning the inside of your computer
Dust will eventually get inside your computer and clog up cooling fans, causing them to stop working properly. This can potentially lead to other components overheating. The internal components of your computer are extremely fragile and need to be handled with great care. Do not take the case off of your computer, as this usually voids your warranty.
For all of your computer needs, our technicians are here to help.
People who buy desktop or laptop computers today need to choose between getting a solid state drive (SSD) or a hard disk drive (HDD) as a primary storage component for their device. But which one is the better choice? In this article, we outline the differences between SSD and HDD, as well as their pros and cons, so you can make the right decision for your next purchase.
What is an HDD?
A hard disk drive (HDD) is a computer storage device that’s comprised of metal platters with a magnetic coating, spindle, and various moving parts to process and store data. The common size for laptop hard drives is the 2.5” model, while a larger 3.5” model is usually found in desktop computers.
What is an SSD?
A solid state drive (SSD) is another type of data storage device that performs the same job as an HDD. But instead of storing data on metal platters, an SSD uses flash memory chips and an embedded processor to store, retrieve, and cache data. It is roughly the same size as a typical HDD and looks like a smartphone battery. .
HDD and SSD comparison
Now let’s take a closer look at the two devices. We break it down into the following main categories:
This is where SSDs truly prevail. While HDDs need a long time to access data and files because the disk must spin to find it, SSDs can complete this task 200% faster since data is instantly accessed through flash memory chips. This is why an SSD-equipped PC will boot within seconds and deliver blazing fast speeds for launching programs and applications, whereas a computer that uses an HDD will take a much longer time to boot the operating system, and will perform slower than an SSD during normal use.
As of writing, SSD units max out at 60 TB storage capacity. Although there are large SSDs, anything that’s over 512 GB is beyond most people’s price range. HDDs, on the other hand, have large capacities (1–2 TB) available for much more affordable prices.
HDDs consist of various moving parts and components, making them susceptible to shock and damage. The longer you use your HDD, the more they wear down and eventually end up failing. Meanwhile, SSDs use a non-mechanical flash storage mounted on a circuit board, providing better performance and reliability, and making it more likely to keep your files and data safe.
An HDD can sometimes be the loudest part of your computer. Even the highest-performing HDDs will emit some noise when the drive is spinning back and forth to process data. SSDs have no moving parts, so it makes no noise at all.
More moving parts means more heat, and HDD users will have to accept that their device will degenerate over time because of the heat HDDs produce. An SSD uses flash memory, generating less heat, so they have a longer lifespan.
SSDs are much more expensive than HDDs, although today the price difference has narrowed considerably. This is why most computers with an SSD only have a few hundred gigabytes of storage. HDDs are about twice as cheap as SSDs.
Despite the higher costs and lower storage capacity, SSD is the clear winner over HDD in terms of performance. While you’re paying more for less memory with an SSD, you’re investing in a faster and far more durable data storage option in the long run.
We recommend using an SSD as the primary storage for your operating system, applications, and most-used programs. You can install an HDD on the same computer to store documents, movies, music, and pictures; these files don’t need to leverage the incredible access times and speed of SSD.