Posts Tagged IT Support Phoenix

Ghost Servers – Who Ya Gonna Call?

b2ap3_thumbnail_ghost_server_400.jpgEveryone has heard horror stories about the spirits of the dead lingering in this world. Every culture on this planet has different beliefs about the nature of these spectral beings. Not much is known about these beings, but people still believe without a doubt that they exist. In regards to technology, ghosts do exist, in the form of ghost servers.

With more and more companies migrating their servers to the cloud, they are leaving behind the carcasses of their old servers. They then become “ghost servers,” which are classified as unused or underutilized servers. What’s worse is that these servers continue to run in the background, and if your company isn’t careful, it could waste a lot of money by operating an underutilized server. It’s counterproductive and dangerous to your company.

One such IT horror story occurred in 2006 when someone hacked into the alumni database of Ohio University and could have potentially stolen 137,800 Social Security numbers. Nobody knew this server was still active, and due to this, no security patches were issued to it. This allowed hackers to compromise it and steal this valuable information. Of course, the question must be asked: how did nobody know that this server was still plugged in and active?

Ghost Hunting
The first step toward exorcising your network is to identify these ghost servers. If you recently relocated, or have moved to the cloud, you likely have ghost servers operating somewhere. The best way to locate them is to keep track of what your company is using, and where it is using it. Keep an inventory of all your systems and servers in place, and what they are being used for. If you’ve lost track of what device performs what action on your network, reach out to us to get a network assessment to map your entire network and organize it once and for all.

Of course, all businesses should be doing this in the first place, but sometimes companies run out of funds for an IT staff and they lack the resources to track these specters. Outsourcing your IT needs can help with this problem. Outsourced IT services from Total Networks can cut down on your payroll, and you can use the funds saved to hire marketing or sales staff to make your company more money.

We Mourn For Your Loss
Even when you find the ghost servers, there are specific steps you must take to ensure that they cannot be accessed by anyone. First, you must determine if it is necessary. If it is, you should consider virtualizing it to save time and money. Total Networks can assist you with virtualizing your server, but if you opt to let us host your data, we’ll monitor the system for you and you won’t have to worry about ghosts haunting your servers again.

If you find that the server is completely unneeded, it’s time to say goodbye to it. Let it move on and into the afterlife. Cut the cord (not literally) and separate it from its power supply, wipe the drives clean of any information that hackers could access, and stick it in a coffin for burial. It’s only when the server has been completely disconnected from the network, wiped clean, and removed from its location that it can finally rest in peace.

If you need assistance laying your unused servers to rest, Total Networks can be there to help you lower the casket into its silicone grave. We can host your data for you, and you’ll never be haunted by it again. We’ll also monitor your system and make sure that there is no unnatural presence lurking its shadows. Call (602)412-5025 today and we’ll ensure you don’t get spooked!

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Posted in: Security

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Tip of the Week: How to Remotely Wipe Your Android Device Clean

b2ap3_thumbnail_wipe_your_android_device_400.jpgMobile technology has invaded our very way of life. We don’t leave the house without our mobile phones, and many business owners have their phones integrated to connect with their company’s network. The average user has many different social media applications and others that utilize personal information. What would happen if you lost it?

Unfortunately, that would mean that your mobile device, and likely your business’s information, could be at risk of being compromised. If a bad guy got ahold of your phone, what would he decide to access? Your social media? Your bank statements? Your business email? There’s no telling what he will sabotage, and why. All you need to know is how to prevent this from happening.

Finding the Android Device Manager
Thankfully, any Android device can take advantage of clean-slate erasing with Google’s Android Device Manager. Similar to iCloud, you’ll be able to locate your device and erase all information that is on it. This might be traumatic to you, but it’s an essential step toward keeping your business safe from hackers and thieves.

It’s not uncommon for Android mobile users to not know this function exists. All you need to do is access your Google Settings:

1 google settings

This can be found under the All Apps section of your Android device. After clicking on Google Settings, you’ll see the option to access your Android Device Manager:

2 android device manager

Set the Device Up For Remote Erasing
The first thing you’ll notice is that the option Remotely locate this device is the default setting. This allows you to find the device wherever it might be, and it gives you the ability to erase all current information on the device and restore it to the factory default. This is particularly useful if you lose your phone and suspect someone is doing bad things with it. In order to wipe the device, select Allow remote lock and erase:

3 allow remote lock

Click this selection, and your device will prompt you to grant permissions to the Android Device Manager.

4 activate device administrator

After you activate the Android Device Manager, you need to sign into your Gmail account from a web browser.

The Clean Erase
In order to access the Android Device Manager, click here. All you need to do is accept the agreement (if this is your first time accessing the application), and you’re all set to wipe your phone remotely. Select your device from the list, and if you’ve enabled Lock and Erase, you’ll be able to send the command to the device that will erase any information on the phone and restore it to default factory settings.

It should be noted that, once you press Erase, the action will start and cannot be halted. If the device isn’t powered on, it will wipe the device as soon as it is turned on.

By taking advantage of this feature, you can remotely erase your phone’s sensitive information and protect your company, regardless of whether your phone is stolen or simply misplaced. Do you have any horror stories concerning a lost mobile device? Share them with us in the comments.

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Posted in: How To

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