The Meridian Blog: Tech News, Tips & More for SMB and Enterprise Environments

Robert Bruce

Robert Bruce

Recent Posts

SMBs: A Secure Network Does Not Have to Be Costly

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Thu, Feb 25, 2016

Global spending on information security exceeded $7 billion last year, but that doesn’t mean your business has to spend large sums of money on a secure network infrastructure.

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MFP vs Desktop Printer: Which is better for your office printing needs?

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Tue, Feb 23, 2016

The multifunction printer (MFP) has greatly improved document management, workflow and office efficiencies, but desktop printers can still be found at some workstations. In fact, despite the many technological advantages of the MFP, the desktop printer hasn't completely disappeared from the modern office environment. 

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How Much Copier Speed Do You Need?

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Tue, Dec 08, 2015

One of the most important qualities of a printer/copier is ppm or pages per minute. It’s not the only factor, not by a longshot. But, copy speed is certain to be heavily factored in when deciding on which copier, or multifunction printer (MFP), to lease or buy.

Much like an automobile’s horsepower, top printer speed is not always utilized, but it’s nice to have it when it’s needed. On the other hand, do you really need to lease a Corvette when most of your driving occurs within a radius of 10 miles or less, on city streets?

For now, let’s take an objective look at MFP ppm speed. We'll start with one question: is faster always better?

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4 Ways DC Businesses Can Save Money Through Managed Print

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Tue, Nov 17, 2015

Running a small- to mid-sized business (SMB) in a market as competitive as the Washington, DC metro area is a challenge. Profit margins can seem slimmer than a sheet of printer paper. And that segues into a good way that SMBs can save money, increase efficiency, improve document security, and help the environment — managed print services (MPS).

In a continual effort to reduce expenses and increase profits, many SMBs closely monitor recurring expenses like travel and transportation costs, telecom and broadband usage, and energy costs. However, it's not unusual to find an SMB that keeps a frugal eye on those expenses while mostly ignoring its printing costs.

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Associations and Non-Profits Can Achieve Growth Through Managed Services

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Tue, Oct 27, 2015

Technology is evolving rapidly, and organizations large and small — nonprofit and for-profit — face many of the same challenges when it comes to information technology. Document sharing across multiple platforms; digitizing files and records; facilitating team communications; remote access solutions; managed print systems; and security vulnerabilities are issues common to most modern organizations.

However, many nonprofit organizations and trade associations do not have dedicated IT departments. Outsourcing some or all of their IT functions can free up staff, time and money to allow non profits and associations to focus on their respective missions, better serve their members, and thrive.

According the National Center for Charitable Statistics, there are over 1.5 million nonprofit organizations in the US. And in varying degrees, they all have IT issues—who doesn't? In fact, it's for this reason that the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) hosts its annual Technology Conference and Expo in the Washington, DC area to give perspective and insight into the most pressing technology issues facing associations and nonprofits.

Whether they contract with a managed services provider or establish their own IT departments, associations and nonprofits face these three basic challenges:

  1. Productivity and collaboration
  2. Mobility
  3. Security

Read on to learn more.

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Is Your Data Security Vulnerable to Low-Tech Hacking Techniques & Physical Security Flaws?

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Wed, Sep 09, 2015

Hackers are constantly looking for system vulnerabilities in order to plant spyware, malware and ransomware on unsuspecting computers, thus allowing them to infiltrate networks and steal data. They spend considerable time and resources writing new virus codes that can sneak past firewalls and antivirus programs. In fact, it's estimated that about 10,000 new threats are discovered every hour, over 200,000 new malware definitions show up globally each day.

Fortunately, security firms have gotten very good at thwarting most cybercrime attempts. If — and it is a very big if — your firewall and antivirus software are constantly monitored and updated, and your organization adheres to some basic data security best practices, then the chances of getting your system compromised digitally via the Internet can be minimized.

RELATED: 5 Key Principles for Data Security

A far more likely way that crooks get their hands on proprietary data, even in today’s Digital Age, is by using very low tech analog techniques such as simply walking into an office or cubicle and physically stealing it. Read on to learn more about these common low-tech hacking techniques so that you can better protect your data.

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Recent Data Breaches May Push Congress to Act

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Thu, Jul 30, 2015

A wave of high-profile data breaches — such as the one at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management earlier this year affecting as many as 22 million people — may act as a catalyst to rush some bi-partisan cybersecurity bills to a vote in the U.S. Congress.

Both Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) told reporters that the Cyber Information Sharing Act of 2015 (CISA) could hit the Senate floor by the end of August. Also optimistic is Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) who said during an interview on Fox News Sunday that cybersecurity issues are “enormously significant” and insisted that he was going to try to move CISA in the coming weeks.

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Biggest Data Breaches in 2015 (Part 1)

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Tue, Jul 28, 2015

Cyber security is a huge issue, impacting organizations of all sizes — from giant multi-national corporations to small-to-midsized businesses (SMBs) — and, it is no longer just a story for geeks. As I write this blog, I am looking at the front page, top-of-the-fold headline story in today’s Washington Post about hacked automobile electronic control units (ECUs), where attackers took over the steering, braking, and speed controls on targeted vehicles.

2014 was a record year for major data breaches and, unfortunately, 2015 is on a pace to break that dubious achievement. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) in San Diego, CA, there were 783 data breaches tracked by the ITRC in 2014, and over 85 million records were confirmed exposed. So far in 2015, as of June 30, the number of breaches captured on the ITRC Breach Report totals 400 incidents with over 117 million confirmed records at risk. The ITRC defines a data breach as an incident in which an individual name plus a Social Security number, driver’s license number, medical record or financial record (credit/debit cards included) is potentially put at risk because of exposure.

RELATED: 2014 Security Breaches That Impacted SMBs and Consumers

In follow up blogs, we will discuss government legislative initiatives regarding data breaches and potential business implications. As a refresher, here is a re-hash of just the biggest hacks so far this year — although there were many more than those listed in this article.

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5 Key Principles for Data Security

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Tue, Jul 21, 2015

The amount of digital information out there is mind boggling. 

A study by a group of scientists at the University of Southern California estimated that there have been about 295 exabytes, or 295 billion gigabytes of stored data worldwide since 1986.

I could type the full number out, but my zero key might jam. I don’t know about you, but my mind is boggled.

And keeping all that data secure is no easy task.

Whether you administer your own enterprise IT security or partner with a managed services provider, some basic principles of data security apply:

  1. Inventory your data
  2. Keep what you need
  3. Discard unneeded data
  4. Secure it
  5. Plan for the unexpected

Read on to learn more about each of these five principles. 

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Five Mobile Security Myths Busted

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
Wed, Jul 01, 2015

One of the fastest-growing new trends in the last decade, Mobility has taken hold in both enterprises and SMBs — and it's not hard to understand why.

Combined mobile device use recently surpassed personal computer (PC) use, and this rapid adoption of mobile technology has led to a number of misconceptions and downright myths about their place in the office, as many businesses still lack a comprehensive mobile strategy. In an effort to dispel some of the fallacies about mobility in the enterprise, here is a brief look at several of the more common mobile myths.

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News, best practices and more to help you get the most out of your office technology. Whether you're an SMB owner who wears a lot of hats, or an enterprise IT director, facilities manager or just someone who wants to work smarter — this blog has the resources you need to maximize the business impact of all your tech investments. Be sure to subscribe to receive email updates about new posts!

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