The Man Who Wrote Those Password Rules Has a New Tip: N3v$r M1^d!

Bill Burr’s 2003 report recommended using numbers, obscure characters and capital letters and updating regularly—he regrets the error

The man who wrote the book on password management has a confession to make: He blew it.

Back in 2003, as a midlevel manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Bill Burr was the author of “NIST Special Publication 800-63. Appendix A.” The 8-page primer advised people to protect their accounts by inventing awkward new words rife with obscure characters, capital letters and numbers—and to change them regularly.

The document became a sort of Hammurabi Code of passwords, the go-to guide for federal agencies, universities and large companies looking for a set of password-setting rules to follow.

The problem is the advice ended up largely incorrect, Mr. Burr says. Change your password every 90 days? Most people make minor changes that are easy to guess, he laments. Changing Pa55word!1 to Pa55word!2 doesn’t keep the hackers at bay.

Read More

Celebrate World Backup Day with POCC

World Backup Day is a yearly backup awareness event celebrated on March 31st.

A backup is a second copy of all your important files, for example, your family photos, company documents, emails, etc.  Instead of storing this data all in one place (like your computer), you keep another copy of everything in a safe place.  Here at POCC, we backup our data daily to the cloud. To celebrate this day, we test our backup systems to ensure they are working as expected and that we can and restore this data in the event of an issue.

Here are some interesting backup facts:

  • 30% of people have never performed a data backup.
  • 113 phones are lost or stolen every minute.
  • 29% of data disasters are caused by accident.
  • 1 in 10 computers are infected with viruses or malware each month.

Are you prepared when disaster strikes?  Will you be an April Fool?

Contact us to ensure your data is safe!

Take the backup pledge today!

Now Offering Remote Android Support

Remote support has long been a staple of the IT world.  Having the ability to remotely connect to a client’s computer and help them fix their issues has become a standard offering in most IT shops.

Power On Computing is pleased to now offer this functionality for our Android device users as well.  Simply download the Inkwire application from the play store, generate an access code to share your screen and we will remotely connect to your device to fix your issues.

Inkwire is available on the Google Play Store for free – https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.koushikdutta.inkwire&hl=en

Inkwire Screen Share + Assist – Android Apps on Google Play

The ever-evolving threat of ransomware continues

Bad guys have found a new way to trick people into infecting their PC with ransomware. This time it looks like a Sprint / Verizon / Charter / etc. (it could claim to be from any phone service really) email that tells you about a voice mail that was left for you, and wants you to play the voice mail.

The email has a .zip attachment that supposedly has the voice mail message in a .wav file. However, if you unzip the file, the ransomware will encrypt all the files on your computer and possibly all files on the network if you have access. You only get your files back if you pay around 500 dollars.

Do not click on links in “voice mail” emails from someone you do not know, and certainly do not open any attachments!

Remember, Think Before You Click!

 

For more information on how to keep yourself or your organization safe, or if you’d like a threat evaluation, contact POCC today.