TechKnow Advisor Newsletter – March 2014

LaSalle Consulting | TechKnow Advisor



March 2015In this issue…

New Technology – Microsoft Outlook for Android and iOS
Microsoft Surface Hub Will Transform Meetings
What to Do in the Event of a Major Data Breach
The Importance of Two-Factor Authentication
How to Remove Duplicates in Excel 2013
Firm News
It’s only March, yet a number of our 2015 technology predictions have already come true. These include:

Rapid release of new products. New product features are coming out faster than ever. In the past two months Microsoft has released a number of beneficial updates that you can take advantage of. The most notable releases include Microsoft Outlook for the iPhone and also a preview release of the Microsoft Outlook app for Android devices. If you are a licensed Microsoft Office 365 subscriber you can now obtain Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote for Android tablets. Numerous new features were also added to Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing service offerings.

Continued cybercrimes and a greater need for security. There has been no slowdown in cybercrimes in 2015. In what is possibly the largest health-care breach ever, Anthem Inc. announced on February 4th that the personal information of many current and former policy holders had been compromised. We continue to recommend to our clients that they stay vigilant and implement continuous improvements to their network security.

Please contact us if we can help implement any of the new technologies being released or help with your security needs.

Outlook App

New Technology – Microsoft Outlook for Android and iOS
Microsoft recently released the Outlook app for Android and iOS devices. This release is an improvement to the past OWA app, and includes important new features. Outlook app users can now connect to multiple email accounts as a unified inbox, a Focused inbox feature similar to Clutter, cloud integration (OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.), and a vastly improved Outlook calendar.

Despite such developments, first impressions of the Outlook mobile app have not been favorable – particularly for business use. Interestingly, criticism of the app has not been related to bugs, but certain functions and design aspects which may pose security threats to businesses.

For example, the “cloud integration” feature cannot be turned off. Such data storage options create an increased potential for corporate emails and data to leave the office and company devices.

Furthermore, non-iOS devices use Microsoft’s ActiveSync technology and each receive a unique ID that companies can use to track where employees install Outlook. Unfortunately, Outlook mobile for iOS does not offer that capability. Thus, employers are left unable to monitor devices employees may be using to manage work email.

IBM developer René Winkelmeyer released the following statement regarding the Outlook app: “The only advice I can give you at this stage is: block the app from accessing your company’s mail servers. And inform your users that they shouldn’t use the app.”

LaSalle Consulting Partners recommends withholding use of the Microsoft Outlook app for iOS and Android devices – at least until the security flaws discussed above have been corrected.

Surface Hub

Microsoft Surface Hub Will Transform Meetings
At the recent Windows 10 unveiling event, Microsoft featured several products designed to be used specifically with Windows 10. One of the most eye-catching products was an 84-inch display called the Microsoft Surface Hub.

Designed for the workplace, the Microsoft Surface Hub is a giant touchscreen that can be mounted on a wall and comes with sensors, microphones, and cameras. It also has the ability connect to personal devices such as smartphones or tablets.

By picking up the stylus that comes with the screen, the display turns into a giant white board for use in brainstorming. We can just imagine the multitude of uses the Microsoft Surface Hub would have in a business setting.

Details on pricing and availability have yet to be announced. Watch the below video to get a better idea of the concept:

Video: Microsoft Surface Hub

What to Do in the Event of a Major Data Breach
used with permission from Norton by Symantec
Nadia Kovacs
Stories of massive corporate data breaches in the media are becoming all too common today. So common that the FBI now considers cyber attacks on US companies one of its top law enforcement priorities. Unfortunately, as technology progresses and all of our information becomes more and more digitized, cyber attacks will continue to be an unfortunate part of our lives in the future. Corporations and even smaller businesses are an extremely attractive target to cybercriminals, simply due to the large payday of data that can be stolen.
Read More

The Importance of Two-Factor Authentication
used with permission from Norton by Symantec
Nadia Kovacs
The significance of employing secure passwords is more important than ever. Hackers are hungry for passwords, as they have substantial monetary value. Stories are constantly developing in the media about high profile data breaches and password leaks, leaving thousands of accounts vulnerable to being accessed by cybercriminals. With two-factor authentication (2FA), you get an extra layer of security that hackers can’t easily access, because the criminal needs more than just the username and password credentials. You’re actually using it already and you may not be aware of it. Your ATM card is a 2FA method, via your physical card and your pin number.
Read More

How to Remove Duplicates in Excel 2013
Very commonly you may be dealing with a spreadsheet of data, with many duplicates that you want to remove quickly. This happens often if you are dealing with mailing lists with repeated information (names, email addresses, zipcodes, etc.), an export of data from a system, or a report.

Instead of manually deleting duplicated data to trim down your spreadsheet, use the Remove Duplicates feature!

To demonstrate this feature, we have a simple two column spreadsheet.

Read More


Firm News
We have redesigned and moved our Technology and Multi-Employer Benefit Plans blog. It is now located here.

We will be announcing more competitive pricing applicable to our online backup service for those clients that utilize it for performing full server backups as part of a disaster recovery plan. Current pricing is based on the amount of data selected for backup. Future pricing will utilize an “All You Can Eat” fixed monthly price model.

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“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

Dr. Seuss

LaSalle Consulting Partners, Inc. 
200 W Madison St | Suite 940 | Chicago, IL 60606

LaSalle Consulting Partners, Inc. provides the information in this newsletter purely as a public resource of information which is intended, but not promised or guaranteed, to be correct, complete, or up-to-date. This newsletter is not intended to be a source of solicitation of legal advice nor should it be the sole basis for technology decisions. The reader should therefore not consider this information to be an invitation for a consultant-client relationship, should not solely rely on information provided herein, and should always seek the advice of competent counsel especially related to HIPAA compliance matters before making decisions or taking any actions.

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