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The Cloud: Your Stuff — Bound in Chains?

Commentary
July 8th, 2009 No Comments »

the-big-switchYou can learn a lot — and be scared to death — by reading book reviews.

I was in my home office flipping through Newsweek’s 50 Books to Read Right Now looking for books to take on the road trip.

I came across No. 4 on the list: The Big Switch: Rewiring The World, From Edison to Google, by Nicholas Carr. This bestseller is touted as “the best read so far about the significance of the shift to cloud computing” by Financial Times.

Fair enough. Then The New Humanist chimed in: “Carr may take a somewhat apocalyptic view of the vast technological and social issues which a move to utility computing will raise, not least those of privacy, ownership and access, but he makes a compelling case for its desirability in a world where the network is pervasive. Whether we go gently into this world is, of course, up to us, but with the insight offered here we will at least be prepared to understand the consequences of our choices earlier in the process rather than later. ”

Truth be told, we all live in the cloud. Teleworkers who log on from home. Road warriors who access the corporate server via a customer’s conference room. Home officers who open the HP at some Starbucks to check Gmail or Google Docs. Moms on AOL. Dads checking their fantasy league stats. Bloggers blogging, tweeps tweeting, friends Facebooking.

We all live in the cloud.

Read More »

Online Back-Up: Remote Control & Security - Even for Road Warriors

Product Review, Security
June 3rd, 2009 No Comments »

Online Backup Keeps Home Office & Telework Data Accessible on the Road — and Safe From the Storm

By David Friend, CEO, Carbonite, Inc.

secure-by-wysz-from-flickr-creative-commons‘Tis the season — for hurricanes and summer travel.

It always amazes me how so many business owners completely neglect the safety of the data on their computers. Or will travel without access to their documents.

Consider this:  during hurricane Katrina, more than 35,000 businesses had their computers ruined. According to U.S. Dept. of Labor Statistics, 40 percent of all businesses that have data disasters never reopen. Some 25 percent of the rest fail within two years.

In short, when you lose all your home office’s or small business records and files, you’re cooked.

And if you’re traveling and don’t have access to your data, files and records, it might as well be locked in a vault somewhere.

It’s likely that more than two-thirds of small businesses do back up their data regularly, but it’s almost always to external hard drives, DVDs or tapes.  Unfortunately, these are usually stored nearby. So if the computer gets flooded, so do the backups.

And they’re inaccessible from any remote location.

That’s why it’s so important to back up online where your data gets stored in a completely different part of the country (hopefully somewhere well away from the hurricane belt). Read More »

Keep Your Laptop Yours With Mobile Security Devices

Security, technology
April 2nd, 2009 No Comments »

Apparently, 12,000 laptops each week sprout legs NOT belonging to their owners — and venture off with strangers of ill-intent (Ponemon Institute and Dell Computer). This mostly happens in “high distraction places” like airport security checkpoints, departure gates and drinking establishments where business execs and road warriors are educating clients and prospects on the finer points of this phenomenon called, The Final Four.

In an RV, where you may be roaming with the bears or enjoying Grand Ol’ Opry while your mobile office on wheels lies unwatched (at least, by you, that is), how can you protect your stuff?

Once stolen, only three in 10 travelers ever recover their laptops (fewer land the prospect’s account). As for the confidential info or customer data lost from the absent PC or tongue loosened by spirits during said Final Four outing, it’ll show up — in your competitor’s next Exclusive Priduct, and your Corporate Termination Exit Review…

PC Magazine SLIDESHOW (10)
Slideshow | All Shots

Laptop security is a crap-shoot. Best we can do is hope to thwart thieves. When I’m shacked up in a hotel — but venture out to a local haunt or watering hole, I leave my laptop in plain sight — locked tightly around a permanent fixture with a cable lock.

Beyond cable locks, other solutions include proximity alarms, software and duct tape to strap the laptop to your hands. Actually, PC offered a slideshow on 10 Laptop Security Products to keep your laptop and its data yours. Products include the PC Guardian Ezolution Multi Combo RS, Mobile Edge SecuriCable Key Lock, Targus Laptop Privacy Screens, Datamation Snap It Laptop Security Cable, Hush Communications StealthSurfer, M2SYS M2-S1 Fingerprint Reader, Yoggie Pico Personal, and LaptopLock. Read More »

Securing Your RV Stuff Better Than the Home Office

Security
July 9th, 2008 1 Comment »

Kensington ComboSaverDid you know a notebook computer is stolen every 53 seconds in the U.S. That’s a ton of bummin’ laptop owners out there. If you’re a home officer on the road, don’t become a statistic. They lead pretty boring lives. Instead, think of ways to thwart the bad guys.

With laptops, cable locks are the ideal solution. The Kensington ComboSaver Combination Portable Notebook Lock is a pretty cool and compact device. With a six-foot self-coiling cable, it expands and retracts with relative ease.

Read More »


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