About Mary Hester

Ms. Hester is the CEO of LAN Systems, which provides IT solutions in the Greater Metro Atlanta Area. You can contact Mary at mary@lansystems.com">

Data Backup: Easy as 3-2-1

A good and complete data backup of your computer system is your first line of defense against data loss.  And a little planning will protect you against a variety of mishaps. Whether your data is lost because of a disaster or held for ransom from a hacker, your data backup will save the day.  You can do the backup yourself or hire a managed services company to schedule and maintain,  Either way, it is important to understand your options. An easy-to-understand strategy is the 3-2-1 backup plan. It has been used for years in the computer industry as a formula to protect data. This type of backup plan is simple but adequately safeguards data so that if the worst happens, the system can be rebuilt and the data restored – quickly and reliably. 3: Keep three copies of critical data. Be sure to have three unique copies of any data that you want to protect stored in three different … [Read more...]

Cyber Security for Employees – CEO Fraud

The CEO asks you to wire $28,000 immediately . . . what do you do? The first thing you do is call the CEO. Don’t use the email as a validation of the instruction. It is so easy to spoof an email address and make it look like it is coming from a different destination. Second, identify the real sender. Below are instructions for determining who is behind the email. Third, take all necessary precautions with your financial institution to be sure that you are protected. Fourth, report the culprit. It is not easy to report this type of attack and you may find it to be too cumbersome to seem worthwhile. If you decide not to report, the important point to remember is that you avoided the attack and are armed with the tools to avoid being a victim. The CEO Fraud scam is growing exponentially. Rarely does a day go by that we don’t hear about another close miss or successful hit. … [Read more...]

Cyber Security for Employees – Phishing

Phishing . . . any number of scams that want to hook you and steal from you Phishing can be an email, IM, phone call or website that tricks you into doing something that gives up your personal information or grants access to your computer. As you can imagine, the name comes from fishing. You bait a hook and see what you get. It is not surprising that so many people are taken in by phishing scams. The scams are quite plentiful and the bait looks like the real thing. Phishing is the number one way of delivering ransomware. And with Ransomware as a Service (RaaS) on the rise, you must protect yourself. In this article, we look at the most common phishing attempts, how to spot them and avoid being a victim. Remember, just like learning anything, it takes practice to spot phishing and other online scams. Keep your eyes open and be vigilant. Phishing emails with malware They are so cleaver. … [Read more...]

Cyber Security for Employees – Spoofing

Spoofing . . . Masquerading as someone or something else Spoofing is pretending to be someone or something to obscure your real identity. It could be a website, email address, Caller ID or credit card number that is being duplicated. Spoofing isn’t all bad and there are circumstances where it is a legitimate technique. For instance, if you have a tele-marketer call on your behalf, they may spoof your number so your information is displayed on Caller ID. In the early days of the Internet, email spoofing was often used especially for system-to-system communications. The basic mail protocols that we continue to use today are open and easy to spoof. That’s why you should take a closer look. Phone number spoofing Spoofing a phone number can be done for legitimate or diabolical reasons. With the availability of Caller ID technology came the ability to fool the system. Tele-marketers will … [Read more...]

Cyber Security for Employees – Persuasion

Technology may be the first line of defense . . . but technology alone cannot keep us safe. Technology solutions like anti-spam, anti-virus and malware protection catch the majority of threats, but when there are millions of threats every minute some are going to make it to your inbox. That’s why you and your skepticism are absolutely vital in the ongoing battle against cybercrime. When our defenses are up, we are good at spotting a scam, but when we get fooled it usually falls into one of seven principles. Although these hustle principles are rooted in the real world, they work in cyber-space as well.   The principles* Distraction principle. While you are distracted by what retains your interest, hustlers can do anything to you and you won't notice. Social Compliance principle. Society trains people not to question authority. Hustlers exploit this “suspension of … [Read more...]