Trusted Tips and Resources

Trusted Tips & Resources

Burnt Orange Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts Talk About Mac's and Hacks

The Trusted team at Burnt Orange Solutions are located in the Computers & Web Design Category.

Honesty and respect are important factors in the daily communication at Burnt Orange. Gareth and the team at Burnt Orange Solutions are YOUR Saskatoon IT stress solution. Burnt Orange Solutions are your Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts


Burnt Orange Solutions Provides Advice About Hacks and Mac's



Locked Out of Your Mac?

If you’ve purchased a Mac expecting to never have to be concerned with malware or hacking, think again!  A recent exploit is targeting Mac users.  The good news?  It’s preventable. Mac users have long touted the fact that Apple computers are much less likely than computers running Microsoft Windows to be hacked, but that era may be coming to an end.  With four times as many Windows 10 computers currently in the marketplace than Macs, it’s not surprising that hackers choose to attack the system that is much more prevalent in the marketplace overall.  A recent ransomware attack may be cause for Mac users to stop their taunts of the platform being hacker-proof, however.  The good news is that by taking a few simple precautionary steps, you may be able to stop cybercriminals from locking you out of your expensive Mac.


Are Apple Products 'Hacker' Proof?



For more than a decade, there’s been a rumor that Apple products are hacker proof, but the reality is that no operating system or data structure is completely airtight.  Historically speaking, there are fewer viruses and malware that are targeted to Macs than to PCs, but that doesn’t mean that any Apple OS is immune from threats.  There have been more attacks in recent years as ransomware has leaked to the dark web.  While Android and Windows will likely always receive a higher percentage of malware than Apple devices, the threats continue to multiply as Apple becomes ever more popular in the marketplace.  It’s only a matter of time until specific devices are targeted with browser-specific hacks that bypass some of the security that is baked into OS X.


Mac Attacks


Phishing emails and third-party exploits of software such as Java or Adobe are also some of the current crops of attacks against Macs, but they’re not the only ones.  Macs have been plagued by adware and bloatware — whether malicious or just annoying — that can float pop-up ads on your system to tempt users to download non-essential software tools.  These problem spots can slow down the system overall or spawn additional pop-ups, and generally aren’t dangerous. Malicious iOS apps are another form of malware that is likely to be found on a Mac.  It’s important to stick with only downloading apps from the official App Store, as others could potentially include subsets of code that can steal user information or infect the device in a much more widespread fashion.  While buying from within the App Store helps combat nearly all malicious software, the ever-diligent app reviewers don’t catch everything.  In the last 24 months, XcodeGhost was able to introduce a framework into legitimate apps that hijacked back-end servers and ultimately infecting the third-party advertising network.


Rise of Ransomware


Hackers are always looking for new ways to hold your device hostage, essentially locking you out of your device until you pay a ransom which is generally requested in nearly-untraceable Bitcoin currency.  With ransomware up nearly 250 percent in 2017, cybercriminals have discovered that there is significant money to be made in locking down computers both for individuals and for businesses.  Ransomware has often targeted PCs in the past, but mobile devices and Macs are a growing part of the threat landscape.  The U.S. has been hit particularly hard, most likely due to the high number of available computers and relatively high per capita income — which translates into funds available to pay for ransom demands.  Ransomware often completely disables the boot-up process for your computer, a crippling effect on any system.


Find My Mac


This recent risk is related to the Find My Mac application, or FMM, which is being targeted by hackers who then request Bitcoin payments in order to provide renewed access to the system. This particular app makes it simple to pinpoint the current location of your device and is helpful in the case of a lost phone or stolen Mac computer.  Apparently, hackers have illegally obtained a large quantity of iCloud passwords and usernames, and are leveraging these assets to lock people out of their Macs and mobile devices.  The good news is that there’s a relatively easy fix that doesn’t involve paying the ransom, but only if you’re willing to lose all of the data on your device by doing a hard reset.  This can also be accomplished by bringing your Mac to an Apple store and verifying your identity.


Reducing the Risk of Loss


Fortunately, there are a few ways that you can reduce the risk of being hit by these cybercriminals.  Creating a password that is highly secure is the first step, as is turning off the Find My Mac or Find My iPhone in your device’s Settings.  Turn on two-factor authentication on your Apple account to ensure your password cannot be reset without your knowledge, and consider utilizing a password vault app that provides additional levels of security.  

If your IT admins are struggling to keep security under control, let the professionals at Burnt Orange support your Saskatoon organization.  They work to ensure that all risks are addressed in a timely manner throughout your fleet of devices and computers.




Contact Burnt Orange today for more information or to take advantage of your FREE initial consultation. View them on Facebook here. They are your Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts!

Trusted Brags About Burnt Orange- Your Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts!

The Trusted Saskatoon Directory team is ecstatic to announce our latest Trusted Saskatoon partner in the  Computers & Web Design Category.

Burnt Orange Solutions are your Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts

"IT Support You Can Trust and Understand"

At Trusted Saskatoon we have personal experience with dealing with Gareth and his team from Burnt Orange Solutions. We have used them for our Saskatoon IT Support 'GoTo Team' for years and are ecstatic to now be able to promote them on Trusted Saskatoon. Our wonderful Administration Pro, Victoria speaks with Gareth on a regular basis and this was what she had to say:

"Gareth and Burnt Orange have been amazing to work with, he keeps all our office computer running smoothly. Gareth and his team are just a phone call away whenever our system has an issue-  big or small. When we had a lemon of a computer, Gareth and his team spent hours on the phone with me, working between billing cycles to try all things possible to find a solution.It was very much appreciated "- Victoria (Trusted Saskatoon- Admin Assistant)

Gareth and his team also believe in supporting the community and currently provide IT support to The Lighthouse Supported Living. At The Lighthouse they provide emergency shelter, supported living, and affordable housing to those in need.

"We help them 24/7 with security, phone systems, camera systems, backup disaster recovery systems, MS Office environment and of support of the PCs and Servers. We are also currently in discussion about setting up a classroom for them there where people staying there can work on resumes and other computer skills to help them find employment." - Gareth (Owner, Burnt Orange Solutions) 

Gareth and his team come highly recommended from all of their clients! One thing that really sets them apart is their 1 hour or less response time and the fact you get to speak to a person not just send an email or leave a voicemail not knowing when you will get a response. Here is another happy client testimonial:

"I would like to thank you and your team for their amazing efforts over the past few months. We are going through a major upgrade to our whole system which is of course taking time, but it is always reassuring to know that at each stage we have qualified engineers on hand to guide us in the right direction. Also, please pass on my thanks to your support team who are always available at a moment's notice when things aren't working quite as they should be. Their direction to finishing the job and reassuring level of knowledge always allows my staff to relax knowing things will be put right. Long may this great relationship continue."- Tim (Broker- Tim Hammond Realty)

Burnt Orange Solutions offers everything from strategic consulting, Cloud services, VOIP phone systems, managed IT solutions and more! 



Trusted Saskatoon give's the THUMBS UP to Gareth and his team  Burnt Orange Solutions are your Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts



Trusted Saskatoon IT & Computer Systems Experts share a great tip on passwords

Trusted Saskatoon Computer and Website Systems Expert!

Here they share a great tip on passwords:

How safe is the key to your castle?              

The keys to your castle.

 

  

 

In today’s world of fast moving information, data and money we are all bombarded by the ever increasing number of passwords, PIN numbers, passphrases and secret answers to secret questions we are required to remember. So what is the best solution? Have 1 password for everything or have 20 passwords and write them all down? 

 








I visit many businesses and homes to provide computer and network support and I am constantly amazed at how many devices do not have passwords, have the factory set password, have a password which is so easy a monkey could guess it or finally the crumpled up bit of paper with 20 passwords written on. The mind boggles at how easy it could be to access and steal important information! 

One of the best solutions, particularly for PIN numbers can be to use a sequence of numbers. For example, you do not want the same PIN on each of your credit cards so this is what to do. Memorize a longer number, 8 digits should do eg 25030077. Each of your cards requires 4 digits, start at different points in the sequence for each card. No need to write any numbers down. 


 

For computers, you can have much more fun!! A great number of computers and programs these days do not necessarily use a password but rather a Passphrase. This provides for the added security of spaces in the sequence, for example, your passphrase could be ‘The Cat in the Hat’. Now, for those of you who want to take this a stage further, you can employ a very simple, but very effective, strategy. 

 

  1. Choose a word or phrase. For this example, I will use the phrase ‘Burnt Orange’.
  2. Change any letter that resembles a number/symbol for that number/symbol eg S looks like $ so use a dollar sign where you would normally put an S; any E’s in the word, exchange them for a 3 and so on.
  3. Make the changes – Burnt Orange becomes Bu2nt 0r4ng3. Let’s look at a different word – Password becomes P4$$w02d. This has increased your security massively. Not only does it make it more difficult for a person to guess but also a ‘robot’ which tries to break your code has a much tougher job. And lastly, and this is the big thing, you only need one password as it is strong enough for almost anything and you do NOT need to write it down.

This editions quick tip. With Windows 8 – don’t fear the start screen. If you want to find something or start a program, hit the Windows key so that you enter the ‘Metro’ version of your Windows 8. Now start typing what you are looking for, the more you type the narrower the search becomes making it easier for you to find Apps, Docs and Settings.

 

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S & E Trusted Online Directories Inc
TrustedSaskatoon.com
129 21st St E #400
Saskatoon, SK   S7K 0B2
Ph: 306.244.4150

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