Technology Articles from MPA Networks

Out with the Old, in with the New Cloud and Managed Technology

August 20th, 2019 by admin

A collage of modern technology, with each device being separated by a line that makes a grid

The average workplace can be a money pit with unhappy employees who, in turn, produce unsatisfied customers and creating a workplace disaster. The key to improving your business is by empowering your employees to work how they want to and using technology...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Reinventing Traditional Business with Workplace-as-a-Service and BYOD

July 10th, 2019 by admin

Blue cloud displayed on top of a laptop keyboard

Many businesses have changed the traditional business model to adapt to the way people now choose to work. With Workplace-as-a-service, small to midsized businesses can be fully functional and successfully, without being in a physical workspace environment....

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Get a Reliable 24/7 Support Team for your IT Service

June 24th, 2019 by admin

Technicians working on network servers

Having available on-going support for your IT services is vital for your business to thrive, and we want to ensure that your business stays on top of its operations. Should questions arise or unexpected issues happen, you need responsive experts to...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Keep the Building Blocks of Your Business Protected With our Network and Server Management Service

February 25th, 2019 by admin

Close up image on servers.

When it comes to keeping your business operational, there are two pillars it can't stand without. If your servers or network fail your business, what could you do to keep your business working? When the core of your organization’s workflow, your...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

3 Steps to Getting Your Business BYOD Ready

July 3rd, 2018 by admin

If your business is considering a Bring Your Own Device environment, there's a great deal of security preparation work to do beforehand. A successful BYOD strategy and BYOD policy is all about finding the sweet spot of control, where your business is...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Lowering the Bottom Line: IT Management Support and Cost-Saving Benefits

June 27th, 2018 by admin

Shifting to IT management support services can make a huge difference in reducing your business' operational bottom-line. IT management goes a long way to streamline both infrastructure and support while providing access to a larger knowledge pool than...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Key Strategies to Boost IT Security in the Workplace

June 20th, 2018 by admin

Businesses have more to worry about than ever when it comes to dealing with new forms of cyber-attacks. The shift to a BYOD workplace adds even more challenges to protecting your digital assets. While hardware and software solutions continue to improve...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

What Nonprofits Should Seek in an IT Provider

May 29th, 2018 by admin

Group of 5 business professionals looking at a laptop

While many of the technical needs at nonprofit and for-profit businesses overlap, there are still several key considerations for nonprofits looking for the right IT services provider. Nonprofits' motivations may be driven less by the concept of "spending...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Partners and Industries

5 Email Disasters: How a Service Like MPA Networks Can Prevent Catastrophe

May 3rd, 2018 by admin

Dense, color-coded code in depth-of-field blur

Often, businesses don't prepare for email disasters until after one has hit. But while email may comprise just a small part of a company's day-to-day operation, an email disaster can have a staggering impact on your business. The 2016 Democratic National...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

6 Can't-Miss Tools for Innovative Presentations

April 26th, 2018 by admin

Business professional in blue suit with purple tie and horn-rimmed glasses

It's easy to grow jaded about presentation software. After all, each new version of PowerPoint and Keynote may feel like the equivalent of the same old room getting a new coat of paint. However, new tools and apps offer all sorts of fresh and clever ways...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

What Changes in Net Neutrality Could Mean for Your SMB

April 19th, 2018 by admin

Close up of ethernet cables going into a switch

The FCC net neutrality 3–2 repeal vote of December 2017 could lead to major concerns for IT staff at small and medium businesses. As of February 2018, the FCC is continuing to move toward the net neutrality repeal, but actual business changes will take...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Addressing the Unique IT Management Needs at Law Firms

April 11th, 2018 by admin

Close of up businessman's holding a pen, wearing a black watch and a gold wedding band

Law firms face many unique IT management challenges that stem from the confidential nature of the information they work with. And that confidential data is why law firms must make the protection of information a key IT priority. Threats can come from...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Partners and Industries

10 Cyberattacks Your Business Should Defend Against

March 29th, 2018 by admin

Two CCTV security cameras on a pole with a blue sky behind them

Cyberattacks are a major security concern for any business that uses the Internet. Even if your company doesn't have a website, hackers can go after your email address and business service accounts. Though they represent one of the more severe risks of...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Cybersecurity and C-Level Execs: Protecting Data While On the Go

March 26th, 2018 by admin

Silhouette of a businessman standing in front of window blinds in an office

While all employees need to be mindful of security, the nature of C-level executives makes them more attractive targets for hackers. That means it's necessary for them to take greater precautions. According to TechRepublic, C-level executives are more...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Managing Messaging Tools in Your Office

March 5th, 2018 by admin

Businessman's hand touching a virtual screen with a white email envelope icon on it

When used well, instant messaging tools can increase productivity while offering secure information exchange in your office. Messaging works in business environments because it's less involved than email, easy to queue and fast to respond. Several free...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

5 Commonly Overlooked Workplace IT Disasters

February 28th, 2018 by admin

Stylized graphic in blue of a figure holding a giant-sized magnifying glass

Because IT staff get so invested in making sure software, networking and security elements are working, they sometimes overlook the human, environmental and contingency planning factors that can invite workplace IT disasters. In many cases, preventative...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Spectre and Meltdown: Valuable Lessons for Your IT Security Team

February 12th, 2018 by admin

White lock icon on a backdrop of code snippets

At the end of 2017, the world learned about Spectre and Meltdown: two far-reaching security threats that exploit how CPUs work to expose protected information on nearly every recent PC, server and smartphone. Hackers can use these exploits to do things...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

5 Specific IT Considerations for Remote Employees

February 5th, 2018 by admin

White-bloused businesswoman using a slim laptop on a birch colored desk

Businesses have a lot to gain by hiring remote employees, including the ability to recruit from a larger talent pool and the potential for less expensive workplace accommodations. However, remote employees introduce new challenges in IT security because...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Solutions

Does Fintech Pose a Threat to Cybersecurity at Financial Services Companies?

January 29th, 2018 by admin

Sample portfolio summary being displayed on an iPad

Financial services companies should embrace a healthy dose of caution when implementing new fintech in their business. Fintech, or any technological innovation in the financial sector, is not inherently more or less secure than any other new technology,...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Partners and Industries

3 Subtle Ways IT Management Makes Day-to-Day Operations More Manageable

January 22nd, 2018 by admin

Outstretched hand holding stylized, brightly-colored gears and cogs

For many businesses, it is difficult to gauge how helpful IT management can be in the workplace on a day-to-day basis — mainly because when things are going well, there's little to notice. Some of the most important benefits of an IT managed services...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

HTTPS: Securely Sending Personal And Private Information

December 28th, 2017 by admin

Stylized graphic with a white lock, blue 1s and 0s in a sphere, and 2 computer monitors

Avoid costly data security breaches by training your staff to check for secure connections when handling private information on the Internet. Secure Hyper Text Transfer Protocol, or HTTPS, is a technology legal, healthcare, and financial businesses use...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Adobe Flash: The Rumors of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated...Until 2020

August 29th, 2017 by admin

Finger pressing a pale blue touchscreen of icons against a pixelated background

Adobe Flash, the web content standard the Internet loves to hate, will soon meet its ultimate demise: Adobe will finish phasing out the platform in 2020. Flash, first introduced in the early 2000s, has been on a gradual decline for almost as long as it...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Avoiding Hardware Overkill: IT Consulting to the Rescue

July 18th, 2017 by admin

Close up of a circuit board

Spending far too much money on excessively overpowered computer hardware can quickly deplete your company's IT budget, taking funding away from other important expenses. Two exciting products released in June 2017, Apple's new iMac Pro ($4,999) and Intel's...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Spare Computer Parts: Which Ones To Keep For Disaster Recovery

July 5th, 2017 by admin

Pile of old computer parts in a metal shipping container

It happens in every office eventually: an employee is going about their workday and suddenly their computer or monitor won't turn on. Fortunately, there's gold in those unused desktops and laptops stuck in the storage closet. Aside from the computers...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Amazon Alexa in the Workplace: What Could You Do With a Virtual Assistant?

June 20th, 2017 by admin

Graphic of six people-shaped figures with question speech bubbles above them

Amazon Alexa, the voice-based intelligent personal assistant you may have seen an early adopter friend use at home, has surprising business use potential to increase productivity in the workplace. Like Apple's Siri, Google Assistant, and Microsoft's...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Android and IOS: Is the Device Just Old, or Is It Obsolete?

May 23rd, 2017 by admin

Relief drawing of a pocket watch with roman numerals I through XII

When trying to determine if a piece of technology is simply old or completely obsolete, keep in mind that there are different criteria for Android and iOS devices than for desktop and laptop computers. An employee stuck using an obsolete device is likely,...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

7 Ways VoIP Increases SMB Productivity

May 16th, 2017 by admin

Wireframe graphic of a desktop business telephone

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) solutions can help small and medium businesses  increase productivity by enhancing your communication potential. VoIP isn't just a simple digital upgrade over your existing office analog phone service: It opens the...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Partners and Industries

The Three Copies Rule: Why You Need Two Backups

May 3rd, 2017 by admin

An array of storage media devices, including several USB sticks, laid out on a desk

Anyone who has ever lost years of work due to computer failure will tell you that backing up your devices can save you considerable heartache and frustration. Reliable, redundant, and regular data backups are your business's best strategy for disaster...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Benefits of Laptop Docks and At-Desk Peripherals

March 21st, 2017 by admin

Overhead view of a computer user typing on a white, detachable Mac keyboard connected to a Macbook laptop

With a little bit of effort, your staff can reap all the benefits of a laptop, and many of the perks of a desktop, with a little bit of planning and some additional hardware. It's a common perception that laptops lead in portability, while desktops specialize...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Getting a Clean Start: Managing Windows Startup Programs

February 23rd, 2017 by admin

Stylized depiction of the Windows 8 start menu on a desktop monitor

It's quite common that, over time, Windows systems accumulate a laundry list of programs that load when a user signs in. While generally benign, most of these "startup" programs are unlikely to actually benefit the user—so the computer ends up...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

An Expert's Guide to Avoiding Phishing Scams

January 24th, 2017 by admin

White security lock icon spotlighted on a dark field with a background of programming code

Unlike most IT security threats, phishing scams attack the human element instead of the machine element. Phishing scams try to bait a person into exposing confidential information by posing as a legitimate, reputable source, typically by email or phone....

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Boost Productivity and Security with Google's Cloud Applications

January 11th, 2017 by admin

Color logo of Google Drive(tm)

For anyone unfamiliar with the Google Applications platform, Google Docs et al. are a Cloud-based spin on mainstay office suite programs that can help your staff work better together. With a zero-dollar price tag (compared with Microsoft Office's...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Looking Forward: Cloud Services Costs and Opportunities

January 5th, 2017 by admin

Blue, green, and orange stylized cloud upload/download icons

If your small-to-medium business (SMB) isn't looking at ways to increase productivity through Cloud services, you could be missing out on exciting opportunities. But while the Cloud offers countless opportunities for business expansion, it can also taking...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Antivirus Software: When One Is Better Than Two

December 7th, 2016 by admin

Yellow 'Anti Virus' in yellow on a black background

If your company’s antivirus software is letting you down, you should think twice before installing a second one on a computer: It may actually make things worse. Multiple antivirus programs working in conjunction on the same device is not a case of...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Hack of 500 Million Yahoo Accounts Reminds Industry to Increase Security Measures

November 23rd, 2016 by admin

User name and password dialog box

In September 2016, half a billion Yahoo account users received the bad news that their names, email addresses, phone numbers, and security questions were potentially stolen in a 2014 hack. According to CNET, the Yahoo hack is the largest data breach...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

The Benefits of Backups

November 16th, 2016 by admin

Three keys with circuit board graphics applied to them

Even seasoned IT pros have made the mistake of not backing up a device—and panicked after losing countless important files because the device failed. We may know better, yes, but that doesn’t mean we’re perfect. On the flip side, we’ve all...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Think Manually Running Hard Drive Defragmentation Is a Big Deal? Think Again

October 19th, 2016 by admin

Open hard drive sitting on a table with its internals exposed

Good news: Your IT staff can stop running regular hard drive defragmentation on your office computers. Improvements in technology have rendered this decade-old practice largely irrelevant. One less thing to worry about, as far as we’re concerned. Hard...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Overloaded, Weak Signals: Alleviating Common Wi-Fi Bottlenecks

September 28th, 2016 by admin

Cartoon graphic of a hand holding a tablet with a wifi symbol on the screen

If your staff is complaining about slow Internet access at your office, it’s time to consider how well the Wi-Fi network is configured. Slow Wi-Fi is best known, after all, for transforming an otherwise ideal work environment into a slow-boiling pot...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Are Comatose Servers Draining Your Wallet and Leaving You Vulnerable?

August 30th, 2016 by admin

Black skull and crossbones graphic

Those old servers your business no longer uses—and keeps running anyway—are more than just a security risk: They’re hurting your firm’s bottom line. The term comatose server describes a functional server, connected to a network, that sits idle virtually...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Password Managers and Recovery Strategies

August 16th, 2016 by admin

Computer sign in dialog box ***@*******.com

Secure passwords and recovery strategies are an essential part of doing business in the digital age—and password manager programs can help streamline the process. Password managers store and, often, automate login credentials for individuals across...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Looking at Data Storage Longevity

August 2nd, 2016 by admin

Oblong view of a depiction of the internal workings of a mechanical hard drive

Not all storage devices were built to stand the test of time, so it’s important for every business to ensure its data is backed up on a reliable platform. If you’ve ever needed to reference financial records or court cases from a decade ago, you’ll...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Is Your Broadband Fast Enough? Here’s How to Check

July 19th, 2016 by admin

Simple representation of a wireless signal: a circle with 3 waves emanating from it

How fast is your company's broadband Internet speed compared to ten years ago? Chances are that while your online connection at work back then was faster than your first home Internet service (think of that annoying dial-up modem noise), if you tried...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Defend Your Network Against Advanced Persistent Threats

July 12th, 2016 by admin

You Have Been Hacked - cartoon of a robber climbing out of a black laptop

If you've looked over our previous posts since we've started our blog, you know how serious we are about protecting your company from everyday cyber-threats—mainly phishing, ransomware, and various other malware. Today we'd like to discuss a different...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Where's Your Company's WISP? Why You Need One NOW

June 14th, 2016 by admin

Businessman reviewing 3 papers while poised to write on one with a fancy pen

A WISP is one of the most important documents for any company doing business over the Internet—which, in this day and age, is pretty much everybody. Who's responsible for drafting and maintaining your company's WISP? Or are you even sure what a WISP...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Data Sanitization: Are You Erasing Your Old PCs COMPLETELY?

June 7th, 2016 by admin

Sepia-tinted close up of an eraser on the back of a pencil

One of our pet peeves with some of our new customers is that once we come in to upgrade their IT network, they're careless about disposing their old hardware—specifically, their PC hard drives. They think that by simply deleting their existing files—email,...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Hardware and Software

URGENT: Uninstall QuickTime for Windows NOW

May 3rd, 2016 by admin

Red and yellow depiction of a ringing alarm clock with hands at 12:15

Today we'd like to pass along a critical security advisory to all our customers: If any of your company's Windows systems still retain Apple's QuickTime for Windows software, uninstall it immediately—as soon as you finish reading this post (if not...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Cybercrime Begins Over the Phone, Too - Don't Let Your Employees Forget

April 19th, 2016 by admin

Clip art of a red rotary telephone

If you've been a regular reader of our blog, you know we've spent plenty of time discussing phishing, malware, and other cybercrime. It's all part of our modern online world, and we know it will never really go away. We've talked about the tricks scammers...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Prepare Now or Pay Later: More Ransomware Attacks in the News

April 7th, 2016 by admin

Silhouette of a running man carrying a giant 1 Euro coin, against a blue digital cityscape

We're only a few months into 2016, but we've already seen two high-profile ransomware attacks—where cyber-crooks heavily encrypt a victim's computer files before demanding payment for a decryption key only they can provide. Two notable incidents grabbed...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

IoT Devices: Security Holes?

March 15th, 2016 by admin

Cloud of icons connecting to other icons on a blue background

Hackers can take advantage of a newer technology prevalent throughout your business to break into your network and compromise security: Internet of Things devices. Your business may have never considered that the handy new Smart Thermostats throughout...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Hardware and Software

Internet Explorer: Upgrade Your Relationship or Break Up?

February 25th, 2016 by admin

A compass surrounded by the logos for Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, and Google Chrome

The end is here for all versions of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer outside of the most recent version. If your business is still using older versions of the browser, it’s important to switch to a different browser—or upgrade to maintain the latest in...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Dangers of Free Public Wi-Fi: How To Protect Your Network

February 2nd, 2016 by admin

Light blue depiction of a wireless symbol

How dependent have you and your employees become on public Wi-Fi outside the office? Mobile hotspots are almost everywhere now—from coffee houses and fast-food restaurants to hotels and airports (and even aboard most planes). Without Wi-Fi access,...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Transitioning to the Cloud? “Know Before You Go”

January 26th, 2016 by admin

Stylized cloud with an open door in the center of it

The Cloud is here to stay—and growing before our eyes. Even the customer segment that the marketing world terms late adopters—the last people to "get on the boat" of tech trends—are finally taking a hard look at migrating at least some of their IT to...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Fake Phishing: The Ultimate Security Training?

January 5th, 2016 by admin

'Do Not Enter' traffic sign of a red circle with a white horizontal line

What is the current state of your company's IT security training program—if you have one? Many companies settle for an annual group training session to broadly review the major types of cyber-threats—viruses, malware, and phishing. The problem with...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Email Encryption: The Basics

November 12th, 2015 by admin

Stylized depiction of a blue postcard stamped 'PRIORITY'

Chances are you probably have a few USPS "forever" stamps that have been sitting in your desk drawer for a while. When was the last time you actually used them to "snail mail" something—a bill payment or an important letter? Most bills are paid online...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Treat Your Network As If It’s ALREADY Been Hacked

November 5th, 2015 by admin

Silhouette of Sherlock Holmes smoking a pipe and looking through a magnifying glass

Weak IT security generally revolves around the following theory: "We'll keep hackers out of our network—everything's okay until something bad happens." But strong security operates from an assume breach mindset: The hackers have already infiltrated...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Playing It Safe with Windows 10: Upgrading or Maintaining Your OS with Minimal Pain

October 27th, 2015 by admin

Windows(tm) logo in blue

Now that the dust has settled around the release of Windows 10, your SMB may be looking to increase productivity by upgrading your OS. Still, you should proceed with caution. The latest version of the operating system offers a more secure computing...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Lessons of Ashley Madison: How “Crackable” Are Your Passwords?

October 20th, 2015 by admin

Close up of a keyboard with one key labeled 'safe' in red and blue

The well-publicized recent hack of the Ashley Madison website will probably earn a spot in a "Hacking Hall of Shame"—alongside the infamous Sony and Target breaches—for the sheer amount of grief it may cause millions of marriages. Most of the...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

What You Don’t Know CAN Hurt You: The Dangers of Shadow IT

September 18th, 2015 by admin

Partially opened, gray MacBook against a black background

Last spring, Hillary Clinton received a barrage of criticism after it was revealed that she used a private email server during her tenure as Secretary of State—seemingly at odds with government security protocols, if not federal laws. Clinton would...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

IPv6: Heard of it? You Will...

September 4th, 2015 by admin

Inside view of a round, white tunnel with black numerals 0 through 9

In our ever-expanding universe of high-tech acronyms, perhaps one you've recently heard is IPv6. What exactly is it? Why do some IT people embrace it as the foundation of a "new Internet," while the mere mention of it gives others an instant headache?...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Desktop-as-a-Service: Start with the Right Roadmap

August 27th, 2015 by admin

iPad on a dark wood desk showing a 2015 calendar in red, sitting next to an Apple display and keyboard

In this third installment of our blog series on Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) and Cloud-hosted virtual workspaces, we'd like to pass along a few pointers about when and how to plan a successful structured deployment within your organization. Everything...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Hidden Costs of DaaS Service? Know What to Look For

August 19th, 2015 by admin

Stylized depiction of a clipboard with a checklist on it, with 2 check marks and an 'X'

Back in July, we talked about the emergence of Cloud-based Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS). From overall cost to scalability, mobility, and security, more IT decision-makers are recognizing DaaS as simply a better alternative to traditional networks...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Importance of Being Proactive: Why You Need A Breach Response Plan

August 6th, 2015 by admin

Yellow, triangular shaped sign with a black exclamation point on it

Each month, Microsoft releases a new security bulletin. In May of 2015, forty-six vulnerabilities had been identified and fixed, spanning products such as Windows, Internet Explorer, and Office. In June, it was even more. While some of these vulnerabilities...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

DaaS and the Virtual Workspace: The Next Big Thing?

July 30th, 2015 by admin

Hand holding a graphic of colorful gears and cogs, against a background of a blue sky with a single cloud

We've recently received quite a few questions regarding "virtual workspaces." Particularly in light of the imminent release of the next version of Windows (which, as we've discussed, won't come cheaply for enterprise users), will virtual workspaces...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Is Your Server Room Too Noisy? Take Steps to Fix It

July 22nd, 2015 by admin

Server racks in a datacenter

When we conduct our complimentary IT assessment for a prospective customer, one question we're frequently asked is "Can we do anything to cut down on the noise in our server room?" Most older office facilities in the Bay Area simply weren't designed...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Malvertising: The Next Big Cyber Threat

July 16th, 2015 by admin

Two signs: 'Safety First' and 'www', against an ominous looking black web/network effect

We've spent plenty of time here talking about safeguarding your company against phishing and other forms of cyber-attack. As we've discussed, the first line of defense against phishing is to make sure your employees remain vigilant by avoiding email...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Time To Think About Your Company's Next Tech Refresh?

June 24th, 2015 by admin

Graphic of the world in a circle with red and blue arrows rotating clockwise

As the Bay Area moves into the warmest months of the year, you can enjoy the summer knowing your annual home spring cleaning is behind you—when you tackled all those chores in (literally) one clean sweep over a weekend. With that taken care of, now’s...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Cloud: An Eco-Friendly Alternative?

June 11th, 2015 by admin

Light green poster with a leaf on it and the words 'Earth Friendly' in white

April 22 marked the annual worldwide observance of Earth Day. This made us think about the role small businesses play in the "Go Green" movement. Many companies have a genuine concern for preserving our planet's natural resources—even if many hotels...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

It's Nice to Be Important, But It's More Important to Be Nice

June 4th, 2015 by admin

Error dialog box displaying 'Please contact support'

Let's face it—the humor on Saturday Night Live is pretty much hit-or-miss these days. But one classic SNL sketch from the late '90s remains our favorite: Nick Burns, Your Company's Computer Guy. Why are Nick's condescending remarks toward his fellow...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions, Hardware and Software

Is Tape Storage (Completely) Dead?

May 28th, 2015 by admin

Stylized graphic of an arrow pointing into a cassette tape

If you're over 40, you probably remember the original Sony Walkman—the freedom of listening to a single cassette tape in portable stereo. Even if you still have a few favorite cassette tapes packed away somewhere, where could you listen to them today?...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Know Your Enemy: These New Phishing Schemes are Hard to Spot

April 16th, 2015 by admin

Depiction of a computer monitor and a mouse, with the screen showing the @ sign and the icon of an envelope

A friend called me recently to gripe about his personal email account. His ISP has done a pretty good job of virtually eliminating the annoying spam he used to receive (remember your inbox way back when?), but now he's the target of two particularly...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

The $100,000 Phone Bill: Is Your Office VoIP Phone System the Next Target?

March 20th, 2015 by admin

Wireframe graphic of a desktop business phone

How would you react if your company's next phone bill revealed a major cost spike—to the tune of over $100,000? It's actually happening now to small businesses across the U.S., thanks to international VoIP toll fraud—perhaps the fastest growing cyber-threat...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Welcome to the IoT: Will Your TV Be Watching YOU?

March 12th, 2015 by admin

Silhouette of the heads of a man and woman set next to an image of a desktop monitor

We've talked recently about the potential dangers of the rapidly expanding Internet of Things, or IoT. As we discussed, the IoT consists of embedded sensors collecting data from dozens of devices in your daily life—your car, your health and fitness equipment,...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Is Your Law Firm HIPAA Compliant? Should It Be? Are You Sure?

March 4th, 2015 by admin

Old-style scales balanced with an alarm clock on the left side and several stacks of coins on the right

When the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) took effect in 1996, a number of legal "gray areas" existed in that original law. At the top of the list: to what extent was a law firm obligated to protect the confidentiality of Protected...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Partners and Industries

Surprising New Study: Email an Essential Cross-Generational Business Asset

February 12th, 2015 by admin

Red background with outline of a desktop monitor and mouse, screen displaying '@' sign and icon of an envelope

What was cutting-edge in the 1990s is still relevant today — at least, when it comes to Email technology. According to a new PewResearch report, 61 percent of office workers say Email is “very important” to their work productivity. That same study placed...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Disaster Recovery: Smart Ways to Work Around a Broken System

February 4th, 2015 by admin

Cartoon of a sad-faced computer and a panicked user with '!?' over his head

Computers have a knack for breaking at the most inconvenient time. Murphy’s Law is alive and well. But you don’t need to wait for IT repairs in order to get an employee back to work: smart techniques and planning can minimize your downtime so you can...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Watch Out! Protect Your Home and Office against the Internet of Things

January 28th, 2015 by admin

Symbol of a wireless radio antenna with red/orange radio waves emanating from it

Internet of Things (IoT) devices provide a powerful way to utilize technology to enhance everyday machines in your home or office, from wrist fitness bands to refrigerators to thermostats. The ability to monitor your home security cameras while you’re...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

The Cloud: A Better IT Choice for Law Firms… or Not?

January 21st, 2015 by admin

Three mobile computing devices with blue arrows pointing up towards a blue-outlined cloud

Several years since you probably first heard about it, "the Cloud" remains among the trendiest buzzwords in the tech world—particularly here around Silicon Valley. Several of our Bay Area law firm clients have approached us asking if migrating their...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions, Partners and Industries

Stay Productive with IT Managed Services

January 14th, 2015 by admin

Cartoon graphic of a hand touching an upward pointing arrow against a bar graph

It doesn’t take a psychic to know that one of your business goals is improving efficiency and productivity. You can do both with an IT managed service provider. MSPs specialize in finding technical solutions to streamline your work environment and preemptively...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

'Tis the Season—for Small Business Cybercrime. Here’s How to Protect Your Company

January 7th, 2015 by admin

Hand cursor touching a 'Do Not Enter' sign against a field of red '@' symbols

The holiday season means more than shopping and gift giving. It also now marks prime season for cybercriminals and hackers around the world — and they're coming after small businesses in the U.S. "Targeting" Target—via Small Businesses You may have...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Increase Productivity with Cloud Systems

December 23rd, 2014 by admin

Blue inked drawing of various icons with arrows pointing to a cloud

Cloud-based applications have the potential to increase productivity for your business. By de-localizing your computing resources, your employees can benefit from ease of access, broader device compatibility, and reliance on local hardware. IT Managed...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

Stay Productive with IT Managed Services

December 12th, 2014 by admin

Isolated clock face in silver and blue with roman numerals for the numbers

It doesn’t take a psychic to know that one of your business goals is improving efficiency and productivity. You can do both with an IT managed service provider. MSPs specialize in finding technical solutions to streamline your work environment and preemptively...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions, Hardware and Software

Close Enough to Know You, Small Enough to Serve You

November 13th, 2014 by admin

Black and white silhouettes of businesspeople against a blue background of 1s and 0s

If you've been reading our blog for a while, you know why we believe managed IT services are the smart choice over "going it alone" — particularly for a small business. Over the past few years alone, we've seen several major tech companies — some of...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Disaster Recovery: Is Your Data Protected From the Next Catastrophe?

November 6th, 2014 by admin

Eleven blue and white circular icons

Last month, the Bay Area commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake. Those of us who lived through that experience remember the sudden, unexpected jolt — and how the event disrupted our lives for several weeks afterward. Of course,...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Solutions

Handling Your Growing Network with IT Managed Services

October 31st, 2014 by admin

Eleven colorful network cables arranged like an increasing bar graph

Small and medium-sized business (SMB) computer networks are more of a living project than a one-and-done IT expense. Network-focused IT managed services guides you through the possibilities and challenges presented by changes in personnel and office...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions, Hardware and Software

The Ultimate IT Provider Checklist for Financial Service Firms and Investment Advisors

May 3rd, 2014 by admin

Two women and a man discussing business in a conference room

Registered Investment Advisories and other Financial Service Firms Must Choose an IT Provider Wisely Effective and reliable Information Technology plays a critical role in running a Registered Investment Advisory (RIA) firm or other financial services...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Partners and Industries

Use IT to Increase Workplace Productivity - Get the Whitepaper!

April 21st, 2014 by admin

Cover of whitepaper with title 'Zero in on Downtime with IT Productivity'

It is vital that Information Technology enhance workplace productivity, rather than hinder it. With proper IT systems and management in place, it is possible to accomplish your work faster and with far less risk of downtime and technology inefficiencies....

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

R.I.P. Windows XP. Current Users Now at Greater Cyber Risk

April 8th, 2014 by admin

The words 'Microsoft Windows XP', with logo floating above them

Microsoft Corporation has just announced it will stop supporting Windows XP, one of the world's most popular and successful operating systems. Though Microsoft XP will not magically disappear from the desktops of anyone currently using it (which is...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Hardware and Software

Happy 31st Birthday, MPA Networks!

April 1st, 2014 by admin

MPA 30 Yr Timeline

We are incredibly proud to launch into our 32nd year of business today! Thank you to our clients and wonderful team for making MPA Networks all it is today. "Without an amazing team, this simply does not happen," says Michael Price, CEO. Please take...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Three Misconceptions about Cloud Computing Every SMB Owner Should Know

March 27th, 2014 by admin

Man's hand holding up an ethernet cable towards a cloud

By this point, nearly every small and medium sized business owner has heard of the cloud and has a basic understanding of cloud computing. A majority of them have probably even considered moving their data and applications to the cloud, not wishing to...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

To Cloud or Not to Cloud: a Heated IT Debate

March 18th, 2014 by admin

Blue background with white words 'Should You Move To The Cloud?'next to a cloud with an up arrow inside it

With all the hype surrounding cloud computing, it may seem like any business that is NOT in the cloud is woefully behind the times. As an IT Managed Services Provider, we hear the following questions from clients and prospective clients all the time:...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

MPA Networks Named to CRN's Pioneer 250 List of Top US Managed Service Providers

February 24th, 2014 by admin

Logo for CRN MSP 500 2014 event

We are thrilled to be named to CRN’s Managed Service Provider (MSP) 500 list as one of the MSP Pioneer 250. CRN is the leading media outlet for technology vendors and solution providers attempting to understand sales and service channels. The annual...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions, Partners and Industries

Use IT Standardization to Enhance Workplace Productivity and Limit Downtime

February 22nd, 2014 by admin

Dilbert comic strip

What is IT Standardization? Standardization refers to the general uniformity of desktops and laptops across an entire business. Ideally, all workstations and laptops should be identical (or as identical as possible), including uniform software versions...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Hardware and Software

How do I Love my Managed Service Provider? Let me Count the Ways

February 14th, 2014 by admin

Heart shape with a circuit board graphic

In honor of Valentine's Day, let's take a moment to spread some MSP love and appreciate IT Services providers everywhere. How do I love my Managed Service Provider and hotshot team of network support engineers? Let me count the ways: They deliver...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

3 Tips to Leverage Your IT Labor Costs

February 7th, 2014 by admin

A silver analog alarm clock resting on a small pile of money

I'll make a decent bet that your greatest Information Technology costs are not related to hardware and software. In fact, they're probably not related to physical technology at all. What is Your Greatest IT cost? Support labor! IT labor...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Want Information Technology with Strong ROI? Take this Critical First Step.

January 30th, 2014 by admin

Cartoon of two businessmen shovelling money into a pit

Escape the Dreaded 'IT Money Pit' Information Technology is the backbone of modern business - it is the infrastructure on which businesses run and employees work. It is the wheel that keeps everything rolling smoothly. As such, it makes perfect sense...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

The Remarkable Truth about Information Technology and your ROI

January 24th, 2014 by admin

Blue tinted composite of a keyboard, a woman's eye, and a cd stack

If we asked you a very simple question — what is Information Technology? —  how would you respond?  What would come to mind? We're guessing you would focus on computers, flashing lights, monitor screens, and server rooms, right?  Perhaps even...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Resolve to Maximize IT Productivity in 2014!

January 16th, 2014 by admin

Businessman writing 'Productivity' in the air in red, with an arrow swooping up to his hand

The new year's festivities have come and gone, and for better or worse, it's time to get back in the saddle. This first month back at work is the perfect time to consider business goals for the coming year and determine how to make your business more...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

Important IT Security Message for MPA Networks’ Clients

December 19th, 2013 by admin

Cartoon of a red haired woman using a chained up computer while a man extends his hand for payment

One Malicious Email Could Cost you Thousands of Dollars and Take Down your Entire Network – Don’t be a Victim; Learn the Facts! Ransomware viruses are on the rise and their explosive growth in the past few months has been startling.  We want to help our...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

5 Things you should do TODAY (and everyday) to preserve your IT systems

November 6th, 2013 by admin

Close up of a keyboard with a stethoscope resting on the left side

The 5 basic tips below are essential to maintaining the health and efficiency of your network, servers, and computer systems. Please consult an expert IT Consultant or Managed Service Provider for more information about protecting your IT systems. ...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

How a Managed Service Provider Can Increase ROI and Influence Long-Term Business Success

September 30th, 2013 by admin

Two puzzle pieces being drawn in the air, one saying 'partner' and the other 'ship'

Partnering with a Managed Service Provider (MSP) is one of the most important decisions you can make to ensure the longevity and productivity of your SMB. Why? An experienced MSP is a true business partner, reduces and streamlines IT costs, and takes...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions, Partners and Industries

4 Crucial Benefits of a Managed Service Provider

August 27th, 2013 by admin

Drawing of 'computer network' with six spokes of other words pointing in towards it

Managed Service Providers - or MSPs - are tasked with the critically important job of managing IT to help businesses run smoothly. Information Technology is the foundation upon which businesses operate, communicate, and grow, and must therefore...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions

The Real Cost of IT Downtime

August 18th, 2013 by admin

Frustrated user pulling their hair while staring angrily at a computer screen

Downtime - it isn't always what you think! When you think downtime, I'm sure you're picturing the results of a total IT disaster - perhaps a flood destroying the server room or a malicious virus that hacks the network, forcing everyone to close up...

Read Full Story »

Posted in: Solutions