March 2014

I think Spring might be coming. Got a glimpse of it this weekend! I’m excited about the forecast this week – I’m not sure how many would agree with me, but I just love a good spring day-time thunderstorm. Dark outside with rumbles of thunder and the rain pouring down – of course it’s like snow, the first one or two are fun, and then I’m ready to move on.

Don’t forget that Microsoft ends support for Windows XP next week. Despite what some are reporting, there has been no meaningful extension of support. They have agreed to extend malware updates for 1 year, but that is only one small piece of the puzzle, and certainly it’s intended to help home users buy a little more time. There is no justification for using XP in a business setting any longer, and we haven’t come across any compatibility situation that could not be addressed.

We’ll get to start this process over again, as support for Windows Server 2003 ends next spring, and it is also still widely in use for small businesses. I am a strong proponent for making wise investments in technology and ensuring that you get the most return out of that investment that you can, but in the case of XP and Server 2003 it is time to move on, and the benefits will justify the expense. Let me know what questions you have.

Don’t forget that spring time is a great time to review your Internet & Phone service bills. These recurring charges add up to a significant expense. Let me help you review your current situation and advise you on the new options available. It’s not unheard of for us to help a client to increase bandwidth and save thousands of dollars at the same time, many times with the same carrier. I’m happy to review your bills and help, just give me a call!

Toll-Fraud is still a big issue we are seeing out there, so it is extremely important to make sure that you have the proper security measures in place on your phone system. I’ve listed some guidelines below to assist you in securing your system. Please note there may be other factors to consider, and if you would like us to audit your security, we are happy to help.

Use strong voicemail-box passwords and change them routinely. Do not keep default passwords. Consider passwords longer than 4 digits.
Consider not allowing your users to make calls from their voicemail-box.
Review user rights and limit the ability to forward or conference to an outside number to only those users needing that feature.
Phone systems should be behind firewalls or have the built-in firewall enabled. Review your firewall configuration for maximum security.
Contact your PBX vendor to discuss the proper security measures to be taken on your system.

About networkinnovations
Brian Gregory is an innovator and entrepreneur with over 18 years experience in the technology industry as President of Kansas City based Ne

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