BEI Blog

BEI has been serving the Ohio area since 1991, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Facebook Privacy a Concern, Part II

Facebook Privacy a Concern, Part II

If you haven’t read part one of our Facebook privacy blog, it wouldn’t hurt for you to go back and read that one first. Today, we will be building off of that blog, teaching people how to properly configure their accounts to give them the best chance to lock down their private information.

Of course, Facebook, being one of the predominant web-based services in the world, has a checkered history when it pertains to individual’s privacy. In fact, I think a fair share of its ongoing troubles when it comes to individual privacy have a lot to do with their overwhelming success.

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The Nigelthorn Malware is a Lot Less Friendly than its Namesake

The Nigelthorn Malware is a Lot Less Friendly than its Namesake

You can never be too careful about what you install on your computers. In this most recent example, Google Chrome users are finding themselves targeted by a new type of malware called Nigelthorn.

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Are Streaming and Social Media Giving You Headaches?

Are Streaming and Social Media Giving You Headaches?

Technology is omnipresent in this day and age. You can’t drive down the street without seeing a tween walking along staring into his/her smartphone, the fitness-minded person running with wireless headphones, or your car telling you that you have a new message. Nowhere is this tech explosion more visible than in your wallet. Today, we will take a look at two relatively new, and widely utilized technologies, and how you can keep them from costing you an arm and a leg.


Streaming Media
Streaming media services are all the rage. They are so popular that some cable companies are forgoing the traditional cable receiver for a smart-device fueled app. Cable companies! If you are a traditional cable subscriber, you may be overpaying for the media you enjoy, but you aren’t the only one. There are hundreds of paid streaming services that provide users with all types of content. If you aren’t careful you could be paying a lot more than you bargained for.

The major advantage of “cord cutting” streaming services is that you can watch content on the go, instantly. You just open the app on one of the multitudes of devices and you can watch/listen/read the content. Some of the most popular of these services like Netflix, Spotify, Hulu, Google Play, and Amazon Prime all charge users a very reasonable rate per month for access to their cache of content. Today major sports leagues have streaming services, even YouTube now has a pay-per-month service that provides both original content and ad removal.

How do you manage all of it though? With each one of these services costing in the neighborhood of $15 per month, the cost of streaming media gets hefty pretty quickly. For a person that gets Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify, they are paying close to $40. Add in HBO Now, Showtime Anytime, and the myriad of other streaming services, and you can quickly see a monthly bill of $100 or more. Couple that with any cloud-based storage or software that you may use, and costs can get away from you pretty quickly.

One tip we can extend is to find the shows you want to watch and once you watch them, cancel your service. Almost every streaming service enrolls you in automatic renewal. This can be thought of as a convenience, until you don’t use the app for three months. By canceling, you will save money, and these services make it very easy to renew, so that isn’t an issue.

If you are a serial tv and movie watcher, one solution to help you manage your streaming apps is using the Reelgood app. Reelgood allows you to link all of your streaming services to one easy-to-manage hub. It doesn’t currently have integration for streaming sports services, but any movie or television service you can think of is available.

Social Media
Social media has taken the world by storm. It’s so big that the President of the United States frequently takes to social media to dispatch official White House statements. While these services don’t typically cost you any money to use, anyone that uses a number of them knows just how much time they can cost you. Some people are so addicted to social media that huge chunks of the day are spent rifling through statuses and tweets.

The first thing you need to know is that social media is that it is not all the same. There are as many different ways to use social media as there are social media sites in existence. There are the social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn which work to connect people with other people and brands online. There are media sharing sites like YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat which allow people and businesses to find and share media online. There are discussion forums like Reddit and Quora, which are used to find, discuss, and share news, information, and opinions. There are consumer review networks like Yelp where people can post about their experiences at a venue or with a product. There are sharing economy networks like Uber and Airbnb that connect interested consumers directly with a service. In fact, any app that connects people with people, places, and things, is considered social media.

With so many options, you can see why people are having a hard time managing all of them. Today, there are tools that can cut down on the time that you use social media by amalgamating the social media sites you use together in an easy-to-use interface. Apps like Hootsuite, Buffer, SocialOomph, and Friends+Me make it easy to manage all your social media, and cut down on the time you are looking at your friends’, colleagues’, and family’s online shenanigans.

With technology taking over the world that we know it, finding ways for it not to cost us much is important. How do you manage your personal technology? Leave your methods in the comments section below.

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Keep Security in Mind on Social Media

Keep Security in Mind on Social Media

Social media was created with the intent of staying in touch with others, but it comes with nasty repercussions. It comes at significant risk to both your personal and professional security. How can you make sure that your social media usage isn’t putting your organization at risk of compromisation or worse? The first thing that you want to take into account is awareness.


Depending on the way that it’s used, social media can be dangerous, regardless of your age or what you do for a living. The Internet’s anonymity is notorious for providing people the added veil of secrecy that allows them to do all sorts of unspeakable acts under the facade that they won’t be discovered or that there won’t be any repercussions for their actions. Whether it’s a troll or a full-on cyberbullying case, social media can enable some of the worst people out there.

On the business end of things, social media can be used to steal information through the use of phishing scams and hacking attacks. Hackers will use everything that they have at their disposal to steal whatever they can from unsuspecting victims. Personally identifiable information and contact information is usually at the top of their lists, though they will settle for anything remotely confidential or valuable that they can get their hands on. Social media accounts usually hold valuable information on them in their own right, including addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and so forth, all for the taking of anyone who has permission to view it.

Phishing tactics are a bit harder to identify as they are specifically designed to trick users into willfully handing over any information. You might be surprised by the tricks they employ to make even the most vigilant users spill the beans on their most sensitive information. Impersonating social media accounts is a major way that hackers will attempt to steal data from users. Hackers can even use personal messages to try and coax information from unsuspecting users. It’s clear that users should be smart about what they post, but how can they do so?

The first thing you need to consider is that everything you post on social media is likely to be seen by just about anyone. If you post pictures of your house or your family, all of that can be traced back to you. A hacker could use this information against you. Furthermore, anything you post can and will be used against you. If you post something in the public domain, it could affect your business in a negative way.

Beyond that, you have to make sure that any information that you share over social media isn’t confidential or sensitive in nature. If someone messages you and it seems out of place, chances are that you should put them through the ringer to guarantee you’re dealing with the genuine article. Never share sensitive information if you don’t have to, and always take any request for such information with a healthy dose of skepticism.

Does your business need help staying secure? BEI can help. To learn more, reach out to us at (844) BIZ-EDGE.

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