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Vee Figueroa

Vee Figueroa

As a Virtual CIO at CoreTech, Vee Figueroa consults with SMB owners and managers to maximize their technology ROI, develop budgets, and realize the benefits of their deployed technology.
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Author's Posts

Questions to think about when upgrading your business PC's

Vee Figueroa
Creating a Technology LifeCycle Management (TLM) Plan is good way to plan ahead for technology upgrades that work within your budget process and your company needs.

While TLM encompasses all hardware, software applications, and renewals of each, a PC Lifecycle Management (PCLM) plan is an aspect of planning small to midsize businesses need to have a handle on. There is no one right way to go about technology upgrades.  Working with many different companies, I have found that it is not a “one size fits all” decision.  It is an IT Manager and Account Managers job to help each client navigate the questions they should consider before developing their PCLM plan.  

The only statement that I would make for all clients is that it is much better to have a plan than just wait for disaster to happen and then have to make decisions while in the midst of a “fire drill”.
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Topics: Equipment Purchases

6 easy things you can do with Skype for Business

Vee Figueroa

For those of you that are not familiar with Skype for Business it is a communication app that lets you connect with fellow co-workers, business partners or clients in your company, around the United States or world.

Skype is part of the Office 365 package and works with your other Office programs. Let’s explore six basic features of Skype Business.

  1. Instant Messaging -  The most basic function of Skype for Business is instant messaging which can be done within your business/organization or with other users outside of your business that are also using Skype for Business.   A transcript of your IM conversation is saved for later viewing and reference.  This is helpful if you were given some information that you did not make note of at the time of your conversation but realize you would like at a later date. 
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Topics: Trends

Does your Omaha business need a firewall?

Vee Figueroa
Do you lock your front door?

I assume your answer is yes. Just as you lock your front door to keep intruders out and your valuables in, you should do the same to keep your company’s data secure. Your company’s version of a deadbolt is called a firewall and it is one of the best ways to keep your data safe.

What is a firewall?

A firewall is a security system that monitors incoming and outgoing network traffic and controls. It permits or blocks traffic based on predetermined security rules.
Firewalls come in various levels of sophistication. A simple and inexpensive firewall will include basic intrusion protection, however may not be adequate for a corporate office, education system, or health care provider. The level of protection may need to be great for these organizations. A very basic firewall that you would purchase for your home device is not the same security you would want for your business. Additionally, a firewall can be a hardware device, a software program, or a combination of the two. 
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Topics: Security Threats

Dark Web, Deep Web -- What's the difference?

Vee Figueroa
So how many of you watched the series CSI: Cyber before it was cancelled? Like many other detective dramas, they often talked about the “DARK WEB” (dramatic music playing in background). Sounds scary, right?? Then they throw in the term “Deep Web” to really confuse us. Although I have begun to grasp the idea of what the Dark Web is, there is still a bit of mystery to it. What I do know is that when my data was stolen from a large insurance firm I was told that my personal information was being sold on the Dark Web—not a place I want to go shopping!
 
I recently ran across an article written by the Microsoft in Business Team that explains the different layers of the World Wide Web that I found very interesting and informative. It not only explains the difference between the layers, but also explains the importance of good security so that your personal data does not end up on the Dark Web.
 
Article Link: Journey Through the World Wide Web
 
If you have any questions as to how to implement the recommendations or would like to discuss any vulnerabilities you may have, please give us a call at 402.398.9580. We would be happy to assist you!
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Topics: Staff Training, Security Threats

Arm your employees with these 5 key security basics

Vee Figueroa
There are numerous ways owners and managers protect their company from security threats. Hopefully you recognize some of these security solutions which include: use of a commercial grade firewall, endpoint protection software, proper patching, updating software programs, and—last but not least—strong data backup.
 
All these security solutions are key to securing your network and data, however one task often ignored is employee education!  As an employer you will want to be certain your employees understand how important securing data and your network is to company productivity. Once you have stablished the importance of security, then train employees on the basics.
 
Here are the “5 key security basics” to train and implement with your staff. All of these will aid in protecting your network and business data.
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Topics: Staff Training, Security Threats

Do you need a vacation after your vacation?

Vee Figueroa

Getting help with your email hangover.

So you have just gotten home from a very relaxing, much needed vacation.  You feel great! The work tension in your body is gone. On Monday you walk into your office still thinking of the beautiful scenery you’ve just encountered. You turn on your PC, open Outlook and…POW. Relaxation is gone!!

What seems like a thousand emails start piling up. Some of them are junk, some very important, and some are needed information to use later. You dread the thought of sorting through each email to decide what actions must be taken.

We’ve all been there.

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Topics: Staff Training

Working from home is easy (and productive)

Vee Figueroa

So here we are on the verge of spring (thank goodness), and I do have to say this winter gave us some perilous drives to work. In fact, one so icy that my boss declared it a “work at home” day. I was relieved as I live on a hill that is not forgiving and there were no snow plows in sight!

In years past, working from home would have not have been as productive as I had files and software that I need available to get my work done. Now, there are so many different avenues to tap to be productive away from the office that working from home was not an issue!

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Topics: Staff Training, Owners & Managers

The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 will arrive later this month! Get in on the advance details here.

Vee Figueroa

Isn’t it fun when a new gadget hits the market—one you can really use?! I wouldn’t normally highlight a new product release, however I know many of you are interested in the skinny on new gadgets built for business, so here it is…

I sat in on a technology webinar conference today and they happened to have a Surface product release launch. I admit, I was impressed! Released with Windows 10 Pro installed, the Surface Pro 4 is slightly larger than the 3 at 12.3 inches, however thinner, lighter and faster. The Pro 4 also has a bit larger trackpad. The pen is now magnetic (as it was in the original Surface Pro) and does not need the band to hold it in place.

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Topics: Microsoft Products, Owners & Managers

The Anatomy of a Phishing Email

Vee Figueroa

It’s exciting to receive a package in the mail with new products or deals I’ve found during some online shopping. So when I received an email about an undeliverable package to my work email address (and I was expecting a package, which was overdue), I almost didn’t think twice about it. And then, I began to wonder about the email address and was pretty certain I supplied my home email when ordering online.

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Topics: Staff Training, Security Threats