Category Archives: Technology

Consider VDI if you work in these industries

Virtual desktop infrastructure, also known as VDI, is a technology infrastructure that gives organizations the ability to be productive in various ways. VDI is a virtual infrastructure where operating systems are hosted on dedicated servers and different types of devices the ability to become a desktop or workstation just by logging on.  Here are some examples of industries would benefit from VDI:

Manufacturing

With the high volume of employees and rotating shifts in the manufacturing industry, VDI could be the perfect solution to ensuring every employee that requires access to a computer will have it. VDI allows businesses in manufacturing to manage many desktops on few devices. One device is shared by multiple employees, but VDI allows each worker have access to their own desktop, when their shift is up they will log out and the next person to use it can log in.

Healthcare

Due to data sensitivity and patient confidentiality, VDI is important to implement in the healthcare industry especially when an organization must be HIPAA compliant. Systems administrators can grant permissions to healthcare professionals depending on what is relevant to each professional. Each medical professional can view what pertains to their individual job clearance rather than the system as a whole. VDI allows professionals to use different devices across a variety of locations.

Financial

The financial sector is another industry that needs heavy data security protocol and VDI is one way of taking a step towards data security. Businesses in the financial industry should monitor and deploy VDI as it pertains to each individual employee as data security becomes a more pressing issue. VDI will ensure that employees are working in compliance to PCI and HIPAA from whatever device they are working from.

Education

One of the main reasons VDI is so popular in the education industry is the BYOD (bring your own device) policy, making it relativity simple for students and educators to connect to institution resources.  Since institutions usually have many users, the IT department can deploy VDI to make operations much easier. VDI allows IT personnel to update operating systems, software, and security patches all from one location.

VDI has many benefits to employers in several industries, whether your looking to tighten security and monitoring, have many devices, or have many users. To learn more about how your business can benefit from VDI, contact CompuOne.

Your business needs VoIP

VoIP is nothing short of a miracle for businesses today, voice over internet protocol is technology that solves a multitude of problems business owners face every day. So what is VoIP? It is technology that allows voice communication and multimedia sessions over the internet.

VoIP can be used on a wide array of devices, including computers, telephones, mobile phones, tablets, etc. To use it you must have internet access or even mobile data. VoIP will give employees access to their own dedicated line, allowing them to both receive and make calls.  Examples of some VoIP solutions are Skype for Business, Cisco, and Google Talk. There are many reasons VoIP is a great tool for businesses:

Remote Work

The freedom of telecommuting (also known as remote working) is becoming increasingly popular, VoIP solutions allow remote employees the ability to connect with others as if they were in office. Remote employees have the ability to work from any place at any time. When a team works from home, or in separate environments VoIP is essential to making the separation easier.

VoIP allows employees to have a phone number with a dedicated line, freeing them of the hassle of having to change phone numbers for specific areas and from giving out their personal line. IP phones allow number mobility as long as there is an internet connection, even when an employee is traveling around the world.

Accessibility

One of the biggest perks of using VoIP in a business setting is the accessibility. Voice over internet protocol allows employees to connect to their business network from virtually anywhere.  Regardless of where your employees are they are able to log into their devices as and connect with others from around the world, as long as they have access to internet or data.

Collaboration is also important for accessibility; VoIP can run on an application level. Collaboration with applications like email, web browsers, messengers, social networking, and file sharing applications provide easily accessible solutions for employees.

Cost Effective

Conventional telephone systems for a business can get expensive and confusing as a business continues to grow. As businesses consistently add new lines and expand their communication features, it drives costs up and will end up costing a lot more than anticipated.

VoIP is a cost effective solution if a business doesn’t want to break the bank due to long distance calling, landlines, and additional infrastructure. Since VoIP is internet based, these factors no longer exist.

Flexibility

Businesses should opt in for communications that will grow with them, which is why VoIP scalability is so important for business growth. VoIP is considered easily scalable to fit business needs, due to the lack of hardware that is needed in a VoIP system. Any addition to a company team will be able to join the VoIP licensing with a click of a button. The same goes for when a business is contracting, any numbers that are no longer in use can be temporarily disabled.

VoIP should be on any business radar – small, medium, and especially enterprise. There are many different options of a VoIP system so it is important to take note of what your business needs are and contact your local managed services partner to research different options. To learn more about VoIP, contact CompuOne IT Services San Diego.

What is encryption?

Imagine sending an important file to a client without a safeguard protecting the information in the file. The likelihood of an unauthorized user accessing that data is much higher without encryption.

To understand what encryption is, you must also understand what plaintext and ciphertext is. Plaintext is data that is readable, plaintext is encrypted by creating an encoded version that is only readable with a decryption key, once plaintext is encrypted it becomes ciphertext. Encryption is used to safely transmit data across networks, it is created with a mathematical procedure otherwise known as cryptography.

There are two types of algorithms that are used to encrypt data today: symmetric and asymmetric.

Symmetric

Symmetric cryptography uses the same secret key to both encrypt plaintext and the decrypt of ciphertext, since it uses the same key that’s how the term symmetric was coined. The key can be a series of letters, a word, or numbers.

There are two types of symmetric-key encryption: stream ciphers or block ciphers.

  • Stream ciphers encrypt digits or letters of a message at once.
  • Block ciphers are a number of bits that are encrypted as a single unit.

Common symmetric-key algorithms include: Blowfish, Data Standard Encryption (DES), and Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).

Asymmetric

Asymmetric encryption is also known as public key cryptography. Simply put, it uses two different keys to transfer data safely. One key is public and is used to encrypt plaintext, the public key is allowed to be openly distributed without compromising data. The second key is private and used to decrypt the data, the private key can only be used by the receiver.

Since asymmetric encryption is very complex, it is usually only used for small amounts of data. There are two types of asymmetric-key encryption: public key encryption and digital signatures:

  • Public key encryption is where a message is encrypted with the recipient’s public key and cannot be decrypted without the matching private key.
  • Digital signature is a message that is signed with the senders’ private key and is verified by whomever has access to the senders’ public key.

Common asymmetric-key algorithms include: Rivest-Shamir-Adelman (RSA), Elliptic, Digital Signature Algorithm (DSA).

Hybrid Encryption

Hybrid encryption is encryption that is two or more encryption methods used together. With the speed of symmetric encryption and the security of asymmetric encryption, hybrid is considered highly secure and faster.

Data Security

IT systems today need modern encryption; it is vital for data security.  Depending on what industry your business is in, part of compliance is to ensure you have an encryption protocol in place. Encrypting data provides three elements of security:

  1. Data Integrity: Proof that the message hasn’t been alter.
  2. Authentication: Origin of the message is verified.
  3. Nonrepudiation: Sender can’t deny sending the message.

For information on data encryption, contact us today.

IoT 101: What is IoT?

IoT otherwise known as the internet of things – a broad name for a broad concept. Internet of things is a broad concept because “things” could literally mean anything. The internet of things provides connectivity to objects that would otherwise be known as “dumb.” All that is required to make an object “smart” is an IP address, a processor, and a wireless network.

Example of IoT devices:

Connectivity is powering the smart city, smart business, and the smart home phenomenon, creating a connected life. Some example of inter-connected devices can smaller such as a toothbrush or a lightbulb. Connected devices can also as big as an autonomous vehicle or an engine on an airplane.

Internet of things is growing, with no signs of it stopping. In fact, HP estimated that there were about 9.0 billion IoT devices used in 2013. They also predicted that number will jump to 1 trillion by 2025. These devices are working to bridge the gap between the digital and physical world, increasing productivity and quality of life.

IoT in various industries:

Truthfully, the internet of things is beneficial to businesses in in countless ways. Devices can be used in different ways for different industries. Here are some examples:

  • Manufacturing
    • Machine to machine communication is derived from embedded sensor systems, allowing organizations in manufacturing to run without having to be actively monitored.
  • Transportation and Logistics
    • Data accuracy increases with mobile scanners, RFID systems, etc. enterprises gain visibility of assets and operations are better streamlined.
  • Healthcare
    • Having connected devices is evolving patient care, being used to monitor medical assets, and maintains life-saving equipment.
  • Energy
    • Utility companies use IoT to gather necessary data for energy cost prediction, pinpoint outages, and schedule repairs as needed.

The biggest issue with IoT:

The main issue with device connectivity is that security is an afterthought. Sometimes, IoT devices are being sold to individuals and businesses completely unencrypted. Also, connected devices operating systems and software will eventually become outdated with no ability to update.

As the world of IoT continues to grow, the number of devices behind the same firewall (if any) also grows. Connected devices allow for an increased chance of getting hacked due to the vulnerabilities of outdated software. It is important to ensure your business is taking the proper security measures for all connected devices.


For more information on IoT security, contact us today.

Microsoft 365 vs. Office 365: What You Need to Know

As a business it is important to know the difference between Microsoft 365 and Office 365, while most people use the terms interchangeably they actually are different. Both are extremely helpful to businesses of any size including enterprise level, and it is helpful to know the difference when determining what solution is best for your business.

What is Office 365?

Office 365 is known and loved for subscription based productivity applications. Depending on what Office 365 subscription your business decides to run with, various applications are available:

  • Outlook
  • Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote
  • Exchange
  • OneDrive
  • SharePoint
  • Skype for Business
  • Microsoft Teams

These applications are used to increase overall business productivity. Office 365 is a cloud based suite of applications, they are accessible from virtually anywhere. There are three subscription plans for businesses: Office 365 Business, Office 365 Business Premium, Office 365 Business Essentials. All of which are available at an annual or monthly commitment.

What is Microsoft 365?

Microsoft 365 and Office 365 should not be confused with one another. Microsoft 365 is much more than productivity applications, it is considered an “a complete, intelligent solution” according to Microsoft.

Here is what makes Microsoft 365 different from Office 365:

  • Includes all Office 365 applications.
  • Includes a Windows 10 upgrade.
  • Increased security options.

A new feature for Microsoft 365 users was announced at Build 2018, it is known as Microsoft Graph. Microsoft Graph is the API for Microsoft 365, it essentially serves as a gateway to all of your organizations Microsoft applications.

There are three separate versions of Microsoft 365: business, enterprise, and education. While they all have similarities it is important to know the difference between the business and enterprise subscription options.

Microsoft 365 Business

Microsoft 365 Business is designed for both small to medium sized businesses. It is able to support up to 300 users with different pricing and application availability based on business needs.

Microsoft 365 Business allows for a single console to manage user and device settings, automatic office application deployment to Windows 10 devices and also includes Windows Autopilot.

Microsoft 365 Business uses Windows Defender to help protect your business from malware, viruses, and other forms of unauthorized access to business network. Security features also include controls to protect company data across multiple platforms, including employee’s personal devices.

Microsoft 365 Enterprise

This solution is designed for large organizations and includes Office 365 Enterprise, Windows 10 Enterprise and Enterprise Mobility and Security. It includes a variety of services including information protection, advanced compliance, and analytics.

There are different levels of Microsoft Enterprise, with various capabilities depending on what level is chosen.


CompuOne successfully deploys Microsoft 365 plans for both business and enterprise. Contact us today.

Spring Clean Your I.T.

Spring has fully matured, with summer fast approaching it is time to take a good hard look at your organizations’ current information technology state. While it seems like it could be a daunting and never ending task, it is beneficial for organizations to devote time to reorganize and freshen up space both in office and in technology.

Here are a few tips on how to organize your technology before summer hits:

Out with your old tech

As your cluttered and hazardous closet full of old technology continues to grow, it may be time to consider disposing of your organizations old technology. It’s important to dispose of technology the right way, consider reading our blog on how to recycle old tech.  

Build an inventory list of all your organizations software assets, then take a hard look at your software list and use it to discover unused assets.  Unused software may take up a lot of storage space and slow down operations. It would be a good idea to uninstall old software to make room for applications your organization does use and to speed up business operations.

Clean up business data

Organizations rely on data every day in some way, shape, or form. Whether it is customer contact information or details regarding invoicing, companies use data for EVERYTHING. A data cleanse is crucial for businesses, it makes for correctness and consistency.

IT departments will appreciate a data cleanse, tidying up data can be helpful in many ways. Clean data allows for more strategic decision making, better timing, and improved relationships.

Set up a system for organization

When your company decides to clean up its technology, they should take the time to set up a system to ensure technology is organized going forward. Every new addition to your technology infrastructure should be properly placed in your framework and categorized.

Rather than dig through your technology framework trying to find certain information, having your technology organized can ensure ease of use for employees, better decision making, and happy clients.


To learn more, contact us.

Why You Should Recycle Old Technology

Technology is not built to last, in most cases, upgrading your technology usually stems from having problems with older more outdated equipment. This usually leads most businesses and homes to have a designated area where older technology is currently gathering dust.

So what should you do with old technology? Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle.

Do NOT Throw Tech in The Trash

Unwanted technology should never be thrown away. Once a business’s technology is too far gone it is considered e-waste. E-waste is a term for old technology, so it is fine in a home or office setting. E-waste becomes harmful when it is thrown away improperly. Tons of e-waste is shipped overseas where it is dumped and burned, which then releases harmful chemicals into the atmosphere.  Consider this before tossing your old tech:

  • It Could Be Illegal: States such as California, have laws against throwing away electronics and computers in a landfill.
  • E-waste Contains Hazardous Materials: Most technology is built with heavy metals & toxic materials, including mercury, lead, and carcinogenic chemicals. It is important to dispose of technology correctly to prevent harm to the environment.
  • E-waste Is Still Valuable: Recoverable materials such as copper, aluminum, gold, silver, plastic and ferrous metals all hold value. Conserve natural resources and the energy needed to produce new electronics by finding a new option to dispose or utilize your old electronics.

Consider Donating Your Technology

More than likely, your businesses technology could be useful to someone your community. Organizations must wipe technology to industry regulation before donating. Research organizations that will take older electronics and refurbish them back into use. Here at CompuOne, we donate our old IT to an organization who will either refurbish it for children in San Diego or recycle it as e-waste.

Recycle Your Obsolete IT Assets

Recycling e-waste is not only an environmentally friendly option but is also considered privacy protector. Old technology, such as servers, must be wiped to industry and regulation standards before being recycled.

When recycling e-waste it is important to use certified recyclers. Certified e-waste recyclers break down every piece of technology and gather recoverable materials which then will be put back into use.


CompuOne is committed to the donating and recycling technology. For more information on how to recycle your unused electronics, contact us.