February 2016
 In this issue. . .


Ransomware is still finding its way into organizations

Secure File Sharing with Enterprise Security on an SMB budget

So you've migrated to O365

Cybersecurity Business Alert

8 ways to successfully lead your mobile workforce

Business Continuity Tip

How to find your office Zen

iPhone and iPad App of the Month

Cartoon & Quote

  Business Continuity Tip

Preparing for Winter Storm Threats

The first major winter storm of the year caught the nation's attention as it threatened the eastern US with record breaking ice and snow accumulation.

It's important no matter where you live to remember the serious threats that come along with such storms. Here are a few tips to help you prepare:
  • Prepare for power outages: Heavy snow and ice can quickly knock out power. Make sure your family is prepared for long periods of time without heat or lights. Get tips on how to prepare by reviewing this power and generator checklist
  • Don't travel: Frozen precipitation, even small amounts can cripple a city.

Read more

How to find your office Zen
used with permission from HP Technology at Work

Sometimes we all need to step away from our work and take a little break. But often, actually leaving the office isn't an option. So what do you do when you need a quick mental vacation? Thankfully, the same technology that helps you stay productive can help you productively relax, too. Here are five tech tips that can help you find your balance, right in the midst of a hectic workday.

Read more

  iPhone and iPad
    Apps of the Month

TapHunter - okay beer fans! This is the coolest app. If you are seeking a great craft brew, let TapHunter show you the way. This app will show you the craft beers available in your vicinity.

Just for Laughs

Quote of the Month

"Dreams about the future are always filled with gadgets." 

- Neil deGrasse Tyson


Hello Subscribers and welcome to our February 2016 Leap Year Edition. Thanks to the pace of the earth's rotation and the Gregorian calendar we get an extra day this month (to realign the clocks and calendar with the Earth's seasons). I'm happy to have the extra day, although it would even better if it were a holiday!

Speaking of alignment, how does your current cybersecurity align with your business?
Cybersecurity has become a business requirement. As we all know cyber incidents are on the rise. New government regulations place an emphasis on cyber controls. Boards of Directors and Executives realize that their vital organization information must be protected from unauthorized disclosure. We have posted 5 questions your Board of Directors should be asking. Cybersecurity Is A Business Requirement.

In Case You Missed It: A "60 Minutes" segment recently aired that shows some of the damage being caused by APT and Insider Threats today. Please take a few minutes from the extra day this year and watch this 60 Minutes segment. We are working hard to build awareness and educate our business partners and clients the these threats. (More Info)


  Ransomware is still finding its way into organizations

This article from Data Breach shares some recent events and cases where those impacted had to pay large amounts money to get their data back! Having a complete DR plan is critical. Employee education and awareness is key to preventing an incident.

The threat of ransomware continues to grow due to the relative availability of necessary tools, as well as the potential for extorting large sums of money. Modern ransomware uses strong encryption to render victims files unreadable until the attackers are paid, often in Bitcoin, and release the encryption keys. In a new scheme, cyber criminals attempt to infect whole networks with ransomware and use persistent access to locate and delete network backups.  Full Article Link.

  Secure File Sharing with Enterprise Security on an SMB budget

The issue with many cloud file sharing apps is that they lack enterprise security controls. We offer a solution that provides the best security and controls. We can deliver secure file sharing for your staff and control the access by device. This system can also integrate with your existing Windows File server to provide secure remote access to the files. All the while delivering a seamless simple interface with security and audit controls. We can even configure this to backup you're My Docs folder on your laptop or workstation.

For more details contact sales@mergertree.com or give me a call.

  So you've migrated to O365

How do you backup your email and documents now? This is commonly overlooked step in the migration process. Simply relying on the built in systems may not suffice.

We have a solution the backup all the email and data files outside of the O365 infrastructure providing your organization with secure data recovery.

Contact sales@mergertree.com for more information.

  Cybersecurity Business Alert

Recent developments in cybercrime have prompted us to recommend that all of our current clients now implement the MergerTree managed cybersecurity platform.

Growth and change in the cyber technology environment has increased cybercrime and raised the risk level for all businesses. Here at MergerTree we are vigilant and aware of the evolving cybersecurity threats. Since MergerTree began providing technology solutions in 1999, security has been a driving company principle. We began business by establishing a secure data center to host our clients' critical business information and applications, and creating a managed service practice to provide secure technology service for our clients.

Businesses like yours form the core of our country. According to Entrepreneur Magazine there are between 25 million and 27 million small businesses in the U.S. that account for 60 to 80 percent of all U.S. jobs. Those businesses generate billions of dollars in revenue and are critical to the stable infrastructure of the United States.

The federal government realizes the importance of this resource and recognizes the increasing threat of cybercrime. Money is lost to cybercrime, reputations destroyed, businesses close, and jobs are lost. The government acted in a proactive manner, they acted on the belief that the best way to protect someone is to teach them to protect themselves. The federal government assigned the National Institute of Standards in Technology to develop a guideline for the SMB market. NIST responded and in February 2014 published the NIST Cybersecurity Framework.

MergerTree went to work immediately reconciling our established security practices with those defined in the NIST framework. We strengthened our own cybersecurity stance and delivered stronger security to our managed service clients with no increase in cost. Many of you have seen these changes as we implemented additional security on every level from desktop protection, to email, to server security, and DNS security. We saw to it that the bases were covered and that we were providing several layers of cybersecurity.

Now the threats have increased and we see greater risk to our clients. Since February 2014, MergerTree has worked tirelessly to develop a comprehensive cybersecurity platform to protect our clients. We provide cybersecurity assessments and risk resolution, Written Information Security Policy development, and managed cybersecurity for many MergerTree clients. Now we recognize the cybercrime threat has grown and we strongly recommend each of our clients implement our cybersecurity platform.

We will be contacting you to introduce the full cybersecurity platform and discuss implementation.

Watch this video for more information on our new 24x7x365 cyber threat response.

  8 ways to successfully lead your mobile workforce
used with permission from Microsoft Office Blogs

For many of us, the rise of the remote workforce comes as no surprise. For years now, office workers have been abandoning their desks in favor of settings that are farther afield and allow them to work in a more comfortable, and often more productive, environment. And it's a trend that only promises to keep growing. In fact, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC), the U.S. mobile worker population is on track to grow from 96.2 million in 2015 to 105.4 million mobile workers in 2020. And by the end of the forecast period, IDC projects that mobile workers will account for nearly three quarters (72.3 percent) of the total U.S. workforce.

Read more

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