Save The Planet

As a society, we get through serious amounts of technology. Help save the planet! What do you do with your old devices though? Sell them? Shove them in a drawer and forget all about them? We should be recycling them to help the planet. The Evening Standard published a story about how millions of old gadgets can be recycled into new shiny ones.

When you’re done with your old PC, laptop or Mac, don’t just throw it in the rubbish. Make sure you recycle it properly, including safely removing any personal data on your computer’s hard drive.

Recycling an old computer can be relatively straightforward. When you buy a new electrical item such as a PC or laptop, the retailer you buy from is legally obliged to help you safely and responsibly dispose of the item you are replacing.

Save The Planet.jpg

Computer Recycling – Technology continues to rapidly grow. Make sure you recycle your old machines the right way.
Do not risk getting a fine!

Computer recycling schemes help save the planet

One of the best recycling services we’ve come across is called WeeeCharity. This charity will collect your old computing equipment free of charge from your home. It will also offer to wipe your data securely, free of charge. WeeeCharity donates refurbished computers to those in need, or else disposes of them in an environmentally responsible manner.

Alternatively, your local council may run a scheme for recycling old computers (but it might charge for collection). For more details, go to the Environment Agency Website or contact your council.

You can also enter your postcode at the Recycle Now website to see whether there’s a recycling scheme near you. Alternatively, the Freecycle Network will help you give away your old machine, and Computer Aid International sends computers to developing countries.

In all cases, it’s essential to take some steps to securely remove the data on your computer. Some charities offer to do this for you. If you’d prefer to take matters into your own hands, follow our advice below.

Factory reset your computer before recycling

Before recycling a laptop or desktop, you should reset it to its ‘factory settings’. In theory, this leaves only the bare operating system and pre-installed programs on the device – removing access to your files and any programs you’ve added.

It’s essential before beginning the proces to back up all your data. Firstly, store them safely on an external hard drive. Then save them to your new computer or in online cloud storage solutions. Finally, if you wish to reinstall software from your old computer onto a new one, note down the licence keys. You’ll need these to install paid-for software (including Microsoft Office) on a new machine.

Use data-shredding software

Scrapped computers can end up being recycled anywhere, often with the components stripped out to extract valuable metals. It is also possible to extract potentially sensitive data at this point, even with a computer that’s been factory reset as per the steps above.

To be certain your data is gone, you should consider using data-shredding software. Windows 10 lets you shred data from within its factory reset options. If you’re using a different operating system, it’s a good idea to run additional software.

Remove the hard drive

If you’re recycling a laptop or desktop and would prefer not to dabble with data-shredding software, the safest way to make sure your data isn’t accessed is to physically remove the hard drive.

You can put an old hard drive into an external caddy – available for about £12 online. This will convert it into a USB hard drive that you can use to store and access data, just like a regular external hard drive.

Alternatively, you can smash the old hard drive to make it unrecoverable. It’s physical work – you’ll need to destroy it with a few satisfying blows of a hammer to break the ‘platters’ that hold the data.

How we help save the planet

We are unable to save the animals or forests of the world. We offer a recycling service to our clients, by taking your old equipment. Our recycling program makes sure your we dispose of your items ethically and abide by UK law.

Contact the LIS Help Desk to talk about upgrading your equipment. Our friendly team are here help you with data shredding, transfer of data and other issues you have.

LIS – SECURING YOUR DIGITAL WORLD

#recycle #OldDevices #SaveThePlanet

Windows File Recovery App

Windows File Recovery app is a new app from Microsoft that can recover deleted files. Have you ever deleted important files accidentally? We’ve all been there, shift + delete can sometimes be a nuisance, or deleting the recycle bin and then realizing that you needed one of the files. If you have a backup you may restore the files but if you don’t, you are left with file recovery software or caches.

Abhishek Baxi from the technology news website Neowin explains more in their recent article. Microsoft’s new Windows File Recovery app will assist in recovering files that you may have deleted and want to bring back or resolve issues with corrupted data.

It supports a number of file types for photos, videos, documents, and more. Whilst also supporting a number of file system types, including:

  • NTFS
  • FAT
  • exFAT
  • ReFS
Windows File Recovery app

Microsoft is releasing its own Windows file recovery tool, designed to retrieve files you have mistakenly deleted.
Like any file recovery tool, you will need to use it as soon as possible. Ensuring files have not been overwritten.

A number of options

It offers users a number of recovery modes. Which one you should choose  depends on how long it has been since the data was deleted. For example, for files deleted recently, the default option should suffice. However, if it’s been a while or the disk has been formatted since, then the Segment and Signature modes may be more successful.

Whilst the app is usable by anybody on Windows 10 or later, it is recommended for power users, as it uses a command line interface. Using the Microsoft Store on Windows 10, the file recovery app can be downloaded.

While this certainly isn’t a tool for beginners, it’s nice to have it available in case the worst happens. We are are all human and sometimes unintentionally delete files. One thing to keep in mind, though, is not to wait to use it once you realize a file or files are missing. As Microsoft points out in the documentation, “If you want to increase your chances of recovering a file, minimize or avoid using your computer. In the Windows file system, the space used by a deleted file is marked as free space, which means the file data can still exist and be recovered. But any use of your computer can create files, which may over-write this free space at any time.”

Giving  you peace of mind

We are unable to control how your staff operate their PCs. However, rest assured we can set up a cloud based back up system. Our solutions secure your files and back up your data. You are in safe hands.

Contact the LIS Help Desk to discuss your requirements. We protect anything from a single PC or laptop to large corporate servers. We cover your Office 365 One Drive and Share Point files, Exchange and SQL server data, and can even provide 10 year email archiving. So, you have certified evidence against future litigation.

All our backup systems are secure, encrypted, robust, tested and built to meet your specific requirements.

LIS – SECURING YOUR DIGITAL WORLD

#Microsoft #FileRecovery #WindowsFileRecovery

The Threat of Cyber Crime

It has made more headlines in the past few years than ever before. The threat of cyber crime has sparked worldwide efforts to protect the technology we use at work. However, the threat of cyber crime does not seem to be going away.

It’s the fastest growing crime in the world

What does ransomware mean to your business? Ransomware is terrifying. Imagine switching on your computer and instead of the screen you normally see, the screen has gone totally red.

There’s a message telling you your business’s data has been locked. The only way to get it retrieve your folders and files is to pay the criminals in Bitcoin.

We have created a brand new guide. It advises you how to protect your business and dramatically reduce the chances of being attacked.

British companies are facing more cyberattacks than ever – and the new threat of fines totalling hundreds of millions of pounds for leaking customer data. Luke Irwin wrote a recent article for IT Governance explaining how the average cost of cyber crime rose to £10.3m in 2018.

In the wake of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) privacy law last year, companies such as British Airways have been hit with record fines (up to £184m) for hacks that have leaked customer data, such as credit card details.

“Criminals are increasingly moving online because that is where the money is,” says Prof Kevin Curran, senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and professor of cybersecurity at Ulster University. “Cybertheft is becoming the fastest-growing crime in the world.”

According to Risk IQ, cybercrime costs the global economy £2.3m a minute. But in our ever-changing cyber-landscape, how should businesses respond?

The Threat of Cyber Crime

Cyber crime is on the rise. Make sure your protected. We have managed technology solutions that will protect your business, empower your staff and increase efficiency.

Will businesses ever be safe from cyber attacks?

Taking basic steps, such as training employees, and “baking in” cybersecurity into the design of new software will help companies stay safe, says Prof Curran, but it is unlikely that cyberattacks will stop soon. “Most industries can do better than they are today, especially those that deal with trade secrets, personally identifiable information, finance and health data,” he says.

As long as businesses rely on technology, they may always face the threat of cyberattacks. What is important is that business leaders work strategically – making cybersecurity as core a part of their everyday operations as sales or finance.

Stay protected with LIS

We may not be able to beat cyber attackers for good – but businesses can start to swing the balance back in their favour. Contact the LIS Help Desk to discuss the latest options to give you peace of mind. Take advantage of our Office 365 Security Package. We can set up Anti-Spam and Anti-Virus to protect your systems.

With the potential for millions of pounds in profit, cybercriminals are becoming more organised. Stay ahead and make sure your profits stay in the bank!

LIS – SECURING YOUR DIGITAL WORLD

#CyberAttacks #Security #Ransomware #ITSupport

 

Upgrade Your Business Phone System

With technology’s continued evolution, it’s challenging to ensure the tools your business relies on are up to date, like your business telephone system. Is it time to upgrade your business phone system? After all, people get used to things. Upgrading a vital part of their day-to-day workflow means a time investment because you need to train them on how to use it.

Upgrade Your Business Phone System: The Benefits

Watch our new video to see the benefits from installing a 2020 VoIP system for your business.

That means not only taking time out of their day for training on a new system. But, also preparing for speed bumps along the way as your team learns how to adjust. There’s also the simple fact that new equipment costs money. It can be a substantial investment, but one that’s well worth it down the road.

A recent article published PC Mag UK compares the best business VoIP providers for 2020.

What’s important to keep in mind is that your legacy systems have hidden costs that might not be immediately obvious. Old technology is generally much more vulnerable to some sort of breach or hack. This can open you up to liability issues and a risk of taking a big hit to your credibility with customers.

Even more importantly, you might be spending a substantial amount of money maintaining, repairing, and supporting your old business telephone system.

It’s good to talk

Deciding on a phone system will be a big decision for your business. Factor in location, size, your sector and the complexity of the business integration. As well as the level of tech savviness in the workplace and the available infrastructure you’re working with. However, don’t ignore the bigger picture.

Contact the LIS Help Desk to discuss your options. With no obligation to buy and your new system could save you money.

LIS – SECURING YOUR DIGITAL WORLD

#Phones #VoIP #UpgradeSystems #Business