5 Easy Tips To Avoid Tech Problems

Tech problems happen to all of us. It's inevitable that when you really need your IT systems to work, something will ...

Worried business people

Tech problems happen to all of us. It's inevitable that when you really need your IT systems to work, something will happen to take it down. This is not only annoying but also, it kills your productivity and stops you in your tracks. This could be a minor glitch or a catastrophic hack. These are a few tips to help you avoid the IT headaches before they happen to you.
1. Update Your Software

I know it can be annoying and it's really easy to just close out that update and wait for a better time... but please don't do it. Those sometimes annoying updates fix bugs and enhance features to make your technology run smoother. Take the time to check for any software updates that you may have missed or have been putting off. Click into your settings and type updates in the task bar, when you click on Check for updates, it will show you if you are up to date or not.


2. Change Your Passwords 

Data breaches can take a long time to mitigate, which directly goes against efficiency. Be proactive and change your passwords every so often to prevent hackers from cracking the code. Preparing is better than repairing. Using a password manager can make this process simple and will allow you to have better, more complex passwords that you don't have to remember. G2 has a great password manager review page that literally breaks them all down so you can choose the right one. 

3. Talk to Your Kids About Online Safety

Being a parent of a child in the smartphone age can be downright scary, and there’s no right plan for every family. However, there are some things you can start doing now to make things safer for your kids. Even if you don’t give them access to a phone yet, they will find ways to access the internet. You want to be the first to tell them what’s out there and prepare them for reality.

  • Start working the big topics into every day conversations: online etiquette, talking to strangers online, bullying, the dangers of sexting and even pornography.
  • Give them the basics on how to spot misinformation (a good refresher for people of all ages).
  • Talk to teens about mental health content and what to listen to, and be wary of, on social media channels. 
4. Be Careful What Apps You Install

If you don’t already have a security policy put in place that prevents users from installing applications on their PCs, you should at least help them to understand the dangers of randomly installing untrusted apps. We often get calls from clients who say their PC had become unresponsive, and a lot of times it is because they have installed a ton of browser extensions. Those users assumed browser extensions were safe, not knowing just how bad they could be. These not only affect your machines performance, they also can contain malware and viruses. Your company should employ a policy that prevents users from installing software. That policy alone could go a long way to help keep your users from making the mistake of installing malicious software. There is also software we can deploy on machines that will not allow suspicious apps and extensions to be installed. 

5. Review Your Hardware Inventory and Security Settings

Know what you have and what you don't and re-evaluate on a regular basis. We keep track of our clients hardware and licensing and warranties so we can proactively replace aging hardware on a schedule, and add licenses and renewals as needed. Computers have a lifespan of about 4 years before performance starts declining in a very noticeable way. And with some less expensive hardware, you might start feeling the pain sooner. If you have a schedule, you can stay on top of replacements and budget for them. The other piece of this is reviewing your security stack to make sure you are up to date. What worked well 2 years ago may not be good enough now. Hackers have become more savvy and resourceful so we need to do the same. If there is a new piece of software, policy or training that is better than what you previously had, it needs to be updated to stay as safe as possible. 

It is inevitable that things are going to break and that IT doesn't always work when we need it to. But by doing a few simple things and being proactive, you can help to avoid some of the common pitfalls. For more IT tips and tricks, check out my Frequently Asked IT Questions page.

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