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TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 409 – Covid-19

Have faith that Covid-19 will never kill your spirit.
Steven Magee

Tech Tips for Working Remotely During Covid-19

Article by Arif Noori | March 16, 2020

With COVID-19 spreading rapidly around the globe, many businesses are having to rapidly shift to working from home as much as possible. Due to the abruptness of the transition, some organizations have been ill-prepared — especially the ones that don’t already have a work from home policy. We’ve compiled this list of free tools that you can use to help you work independently and collaboratively with your team. Some of these free tools are available for non-profits and educational institutions but these tips may be of use for any industry. Every organization is different, so you’ll have to choose according to how your office works best.

Microsoft Tips for Office

Our Commitment to Customers During COVID-19

Article by Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President for Office 365 | March 5, 2020

With COVID-19 continuing to impact people and countries around the world, teams everywhere are moving to remote work. Earlier this week, I posted a letter from Lily Zheng, our colleague in Shanghai, detailing her team’s experience using Microsoft Teams to work from home during the outbreak. Lily’s team is one of many. Here at Microsoft in the Puget Sound, we’re encouraging our teams to work from home as much as possible, as are many organizations in this region. And we expect this trend to continue across the world. At Microsoft, our top priority is the health and safety of employees, customers, partners, and communities. By making Teams available to as many people as possible, we aim to support public health and safety by keeping teams connected while they work apart.

Making Teams available for everyone

Teams is a part of Office 365. If your organization is licensed for Office 365, you already have it. But we want to make sure everyone has access to it during this time. Here are some simple ways to get Teams right away.

Individuals

If you want to get started with Teams, we can get you up and running right away.

  • If you have an email address through work or school, sign in using this link. We’ll get you into Teams in no time.
  • If you’re using an email address like Gmail or Outlook, you can sign up for the freemium version of Teams by following this link.

IT professionals

The self-service links above work great for individuals, but if you’re an IT professional who wants to roll out Teams centrally, here’s what to do.

  • If you work for a business that isn’t currently licensed for Teams, we’ve got you covered with a free Office 365 E1 offer for six months. Contact your Microsoft partner or sales representative to get started today. (Note: the same offer is available in the Government Cloud, but not available in GCC High and the Department of Defense.)
  • If you work in education and want to set up teachers, students, and administrators on Teams, use Office 365 A1. This free version of Office 365 is available to all educational institutions. Sign up by following this link.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

Google COVID-19 site and “coronavirus tips” shortcut to Assistant offer latest updates

Article posted March 24, 2020 by mobilescout.com

Coronavirus pandemic is accelerating and so is the fear among the people and during this period it is very necessary to enlighten ourselves with only the right information. In some countries, this virus has taken thousands of lives and shut down the businesses and industries, ultimately harming the economy. Health authorities have been updating their respective resources so that we could get accurate information and save ourselves from this deadliest disease.

Several tech companies are participating too so to build easily-accessible platforms from where you could get the necessary details, including symptoms, preventions, and news as well. Microsoft Bing, Google Search, and many others have been building ways to keep us updated and aware. Google recently launched a new site on coronavirus to feed us all the information related to the pandemic. The site offers tabs, including Overview, Symptoms, Prevention, and Treatments. On the right side, you would find the Help & Information with several links to WHO and CDC. On the left, you would see links to Health information, Data & Insights, basically, everything that you should be aware of during the pandemic.

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524

TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 408

Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.
Winston Churchill

IT Security Tip #18: Your Firewall is USELESS Unless…

A firewall is a device that acts like a security cop watching over your computer network to detect unauthorized access and activity – and EVERY business and individual needs one.

However, your firewall is completely useless if it’s not set up or maintained properly. Your firewall needs to be upgraded and patched on a continual and consistent basis, and security policies and configurations set. This is not something you want to try and handle on your own – you are best served by letting the pros (us!) handle that for you.

If you’re a Comprehensive Care client, we’ve got you covered. If not, you should call us immediately to correct the error of your ways: 608-755-1524.

Microsoft Tips for Office

Click Through a Slideshow

Use your digital pen as a clicker when presenting in PowerPoint. Press the eraser button to move to the next slide, or press and hold the same button to move back a slide. Click here to learn more.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

YouTube Picture in Picture Using Chrome

Open YouTube using Google Chrome browser. After selecting the desired video, double right-click the video to select Picture-in-Picture. The video will pop up a small viewing window in the lower right-hand of the screen. You can move this window by clicking and holding the left button anywhere in the video and dragging the video window to where you want it to be positioned.

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524

TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 407

Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.
Jim Rohn

IT Security Tip #17: Don’t Just Close Your Browser!

When online accessing a banking site or any other application containing sensitive data, make sure you log out of the site and THEN close your browser. If you simply close your browser, some of the session information that a hacker can use to gain entry is still running in the background.

Microsoft Tips for Office

Translate Text on the Fly

In Word, select some text, right-click it, and then click Translate. Choose a language to see the translation. Click Insert to put it into your document.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

Windows 10 Calculator

 The Windows 10 Calculator allows you to choose from 4 options:

  1. Standard – Basic calculator functions.
  2. Scientific – Includes advanced calculations, including sine, cosine, and tangent.
  3. Programmer – Includes logical calculations useful in computer programming, such as boolean operations.
  4. Date Calculation – This lets you figure out the difference between two dates, as well as adding or subtracting a certain amount of time from a date.

To keep the calculator on top use the slide-out menu on the left side to select the Standard calculator. You’ll then see an icon to the right of the name that looks like an arrow pointing at a small box. Click that to pin the calculator to your screen and it will stay on top permanently. You can drag it around or resize it as needed. To turn this off, click the similar icon at the top-left of the calculator to return to normal operation.

Convert All Kinds of Units

Currency Volume
Length Weight and Mass
Temperature Energy
Area Speed
Time Power
Data Pressure
Angle

Keyboard Shortcuts

    • Alt + 1: Switch to Standard<strong> mode
    • Alt + 2: Switch to Scientific mode
    • Alt + 3: Switch to Programmer mode
    • Alt + 4: Switch to Date Calculation mode
    • Ctrl + M: Store in memory
    • Ctrl + R: Recall from memory
    • Ctrl + L: Clear memory
    • F9: Switch between positive and negative for the current value
    • @: Calculate square root
    • F3: Switch to DEG (Scientific mode only)
    • F4: Switch to RAD (Scientific mode only)
    • F5: Switch to GRAD (Scientific mode only)

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524

TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 406

Paying attention to simple little things that most men neglect makes a few men rich.
Henry Ford

IT Security Tip #16: Make THIS Password Different From Everything Else

You know you’re guilty of it: using the same password for everything. Believe me, I understand how annoying it is to try and remember all those passwords; and if you’re using the same password for sites that don’t share sensitive information, like a login to a news feed you like to read, then it’s generally okay. 

HOWEVER, the ONE password you want to keep unique is your e-mail password. If an e-commerce site you’ve registered at or bought from gets hacked – and you’ve used the SAME password you usually use for everything to register at the site – you can pretty much bet hackers are going to gain access to your inbox. They’ll have your e-mail and your password to the e-commerce site and will use that to hack in. From there, they’ll have fertile ground for getting all your data and other passwords.

Microsoft Tips for Office

Give Feedback with Surface Pen

Edit and mark up Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files with your Surface Pen. Look for the Draw menu. It’s a fast (and dare we say fun) way to give feedback.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

Add emoji from your keyboard

Express yourself however and wherever you want. Press Windows logo key ⊞ + period (.) to open an emoji panel. Use kaomojis to create faces with text, and symbols—like punctuation and currency—to make a statement.

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524

TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 405

The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.
Ralph Nader

IT Security Tip #15: Set up Bank Alerts – NOW!

Here’s a tip that just might save your bacon: set up withdrawal alerts on your bank accounts. Many banks will send you an e-mail alert whenever money is withdrawn from your account via check, debit card or transfer. Setting up those alerts will allow you to spot and report fraudulent activity BEFORE the money has already been siphoned into a cybercriminal’s hands.

Office Tips & Tricks: Word Chat While You Edit

Collaborate with co-authors without leaving Word. Save your document to the cloud to get started. Available in Excel and PowerPoint too.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

The Problem Steps Recorder is a feature that allows a user to walk someone else through a problem they can’t describe with words. The user can record all of the keystrokes and windows the user is seeing that led up to the error or problem.

  1. Click Start or press the Windows Key
  2. Type Problems Steps Recorder or PSR
  3. Click on the program and then go to the first step or first page you are having a problem with
  4. Click Start Record on Problems Steps Recorder to begin capturing your process or flow to get to the error message
  5. Press Stop Record once you’ve gotten your error message
  6. Click Save to name the recording and now you have a visual you can send to someone else to help you remotely troubleshoot your issue

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524

TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 404

Business has only two functions – marketing and innovation.
Peter Drucker

IT Security Tip #14: Work Computers and Devices are Only for ONE Thing…

That is, WORK! Never mix personal web surfing and social media with company devices. If you want to check your Hotmail account or Facebook page, do it during your lunch break and on YOUR personal devices. Over 600,000 Facebook accounts are hacked every day. If you’re using a company device to access a compromised account, you’re opening up a door to a hacker who can get into your company’s network via your e-mail or PC. Bottom line, don’t use company PCs, devices, phones or Internet for PERSONAL use.

Office Tips & Tricks: Word and Outlook Read to You

Let Word and Outlook read your documents and email message aloud. Text is highlighted as its read.

In Word, open a document and select Review > Read Aloud. In Outlook, select a message and click Home > Read Aloud.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

Want a quick way to move a window from one monitor to the other in a dual monitor setup without having to drag the window with the mouse? Use the Windows Key + SHIFT + Arrow Key. Simply press and hold the Windows key, then add and hold the SHIFT key. While keeping those two pressed hit the left or right arrow to move the current active window left or right.

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524

TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 403

The past does not equal the future unless you live there.
Tony Robbins

IT Security Tip #13: DON’T use Public WiFi Until you Read This

We’re all guilty of it: connecting to free public WiFi. Whether it’s at the coffee shop, hotel or airport, the temptation to check e-mail and surf the web is just too strong to resist. So BEFORE you connect to any free, public WiFi, make sure the connection is legitimate.

It’s not uncommon for hackers to set up fake clones of public WiFi access points to try and get you to connect to THEIR WiFi over the legitimate, safe public one being made available to you. Before connecting, check with an employee of the store or location to verify the name of the WiFi they are providing. Next, NEVER access financial, medical or other sensitive data while on public WiFi. Also, don’t shop online and enter your credit card information unless you’re absolutely certain the connection point you’re on is safe and secure.

Microsoft Teams: Stay in the Loop With Activity Alerts

The Activity tab notifies you when somebody @mentions you or directly interacts with a message or conversation you’ve started.

It also shows you any channel activity for which you’ve turned on notifications in Settings.

The number on the Activity bell indicates how many alerts you have waiting.

You’ll find the Activity tab at the top of the navigation pane on the left.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

Have more than one window and would like to split view two windows on the same screen? EASY! Simply select the window you would like to move first and while holding down the Windows key on your keyboard, press either the Left or Right arrow to snap it to either the left or right side of the screen. If you have 3 or more windows you would like displayed, then when you hold down the Windows key + Left or Right Arrow, also use the up or down arrow to then move the window to the upper or lower 1/4 of the screen. See image below as an example of the finished result.

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524

Natural Disasters Destroy – Cloud Data Safe?

Natural Disasters Destroy – Cloud Data Safe?

Natural Disasters Can Destroy, But Your Data Is Safe If It’s In The Cloud. This past hurricane season has brought some of the most harrowing, widespread destruction the southeastern United States has ever been forced to weather. But, despite the enormous, tragic cost of these natural disasters, the people of these communities persevere. In the wake of widespread wind damage and flooding, communities have banded together. Thousands of volunteers and neighbors are working as one to rebuild and find the way forward. There is no doubt, however, that the havoc wreaked by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma will produce aftershocks that will echo through affected areas for decades.

To anyone who turtled up in their attic in the middle of the storm or just saw a picture of the wreckage in the news after the hurricanes departed, the physical damage caused by the storm is obvious. What’s less obvious is the effect these storms have on the futures of the survivors, the reverberating impact that cuts thousands of life plans short and forces individuals to completely change their course in a cruel reversal of fate.

“Forty percent of small businesses don’t survive these events,” said Russel Honore, the previous Joint Task Force commander for Hurricane Katrina. The electrical grid is knocked out for days, and businesses are forced to close the office for what they hope is a temporary period due to flooding.

Each day that a business can’t provide service, it’s bleeding money — a cost that many businesses, especially the little guys, can’t absorb. So, they close for good, their buildings go up for lease and those who were once the heads of promising young businesses are now unemployed, in the market for a job in a city up to its neck in water.

Just as common is a business that finds its central data structures wiped out by physical damage. Following a hurricane, most businesses near the storm should have little trouble cleaning up and remodeling following nasty flooding, but if their servers, computers and network infrastructure have been wiped out, it’s a completely a different story.

Oftentimes, a catastrophic loss of data will shutter a business for good. A 2010 report by technology research firm Gartner Group stated that 43 percent of businesses went belly-up almost immediately after a “major loss” of data, while 51% shut down within just two years. That leaves a measly 6% survival rate for businesses that suffer company-wide data loss.

These are scary numbers, to be sure, but there is good news: Businesses that migrate their data to the cloud are at significantly less risk of losing vital data. This is not only because your typical cloud service will back up your up-to-date data with several levels of redundancy, but because most cloud services are actually more secure than their on-site counterparts in general.

And make no mistake, businesses with on-site data are susceptible to loss far beyond physical disasters like hurricanes, flooding, earthquakes or solar flares. Don’t forget the risks disgruntled employees, freak accidents and, especially, hackers pose to your precious data. While it’s true that all of these risks still exist with cloud-based services, they’re much reduced. A 2012 Alert Logic report stated that “on-premises environment users actually suffer more [hacking] incidents” than cloud-based users, while also being subjected to “significantly more brute force attacks.” When you think about it, this makes sense. With your entire system backed up on a number of off-site locations, it’s much more difficult for hackers to encrypt the entirety of your data and hold it for ransom.

That said, not every business absolutely needs the cloud to stay secure. Certain business models need on-site structures for various reasons, and a few find it more cost-effective. Still, the cloud is definitely something that any savvy business owner needs to examine closely as a potential option. It could mean the difference between flourishing in the next fiscal quarter and going under.

TCC Tuesday Tidbits Issue 402

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.
Steve Jobs

IT Security Tip #12: The DANGERS of Dropbox and Other File Sync Apps

If you’re using Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive or other consumer-grade file sync and sharing cloud applications, listen up! These applications pose a huge threat to your company because company data can be spread far and wide without central oversight of what information is being shared with whom. Further, over 7 MILLION Dropbox accounts have been hacked, giving cybercriminals a path into the company’s network.

This is even MORE important if your company has access to and/or stores financial, medical or other sensitive data. Using file-sharing applications like these are a clear and direct violation of data breach and compliance laws. Bottom line, DON’T USE THEM FOR COMPANY DATA and use only company-approved, business-grade file-sharing applications.

Microsoft Teams: Connect Your Team to the World with Connectors

Did you know you can set up a Twitter feed for your Team? And many other services, too, including Trello, GitHub, Bing News, and more. With Office 365 Connectors, it’s easy to connect many of your favorite apps and services. Here’s how:

  1. Right-click the channel you want to add a connector to.
  2. Select Connectors.
  3. Search for the connector(s) you want to add to the channel.
  4. Click Add, and follow the prompts.

Keyboard Keys

Shortcut of the Week

Forgot to bookmark a web page you once visited? Don’t fret! Quickly find your site by searching your browser history. Press Ctrl + H or Command + H on a mac to open the browser’s history. Once there, type a keyword that you remember about that page.

Tech Corner

A security vulnerability in one of the world’s most commonly used enterprise video conferencing tools could have allowed hackers to eavesdrop on private business meetings. researchers at cybersecurity company Check Point found it was possible to exploit the way Zoom generated URLs for virtual conference rooms and use this to eavesdrop on meetings. By using automated tools to generate random meeting room IDs, researchers found that they could generate links to genuine Zoom meetings without password protection 4% of the time during tests. In order to counter the potential for cyber criminals exploiting any form of teleconferencing software by using any potential vulnerabilities in other platforms, it’s recommended that businesses ensure that calls are password protected.”

Have an unfortunate co-worker that’s not getting a copy of the TCC Tuesday Tidbits? Forward them your copy. Or, better yet, have them sign up at https://computer-center.com/tidbits/

Submit your TCC Tuesday Tidbit requests and ideas to me by calling (608) 755-1524.

Sincerely,

James Pearson, President The Computer Center 39 S. Main St. – Upper Janesville, WI 53545 (608) 755-1524