Podcast: What’s coola than a Doula?

On the Edge of Innovation, we talked with client Enza Lilley, a doula from “A Mommy’s Friend Doula Service” about her experiences as a Doula and small business owner on the North Shore of Boston.

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Business Spotlight:
Meet Benjamin Nutter Architects, LLC

“Paul and his team have taken our specific needs and formulated solutions that work. Our employees work in multiple offices and SaviorLabs provides a solution where we are all able to access and share files from any location. It is nice to know the integrity of our network is in good hands. SaviorLabs is knowledgeable and up to date on current technology and security issues which means we, as architects, don’t have to be!”

– Benjamin Nutter

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Tech Perspective:
CCleaner and the Sad Saga of Hope

By Paul Parisi, President & Founder

CCleaner is a good program for helping clean up the crud on your computer. It has been used by lots of people for lots of years. But the fact is you don’t really need it and Microsoft has been quoted saying that these type of cleaning tools can even cause problems. So, still, it feels good to see it “cleaning” all this stuff up. Less crud has got to better, doesn’t it?

I don’t recommend that typically users use or add these kinds of programs to their computers. Why? Because if you use the tool wrong it can cause all sorts of unintended consequences. Now I have another reason for not installing things on our computers. In fact, it goes with my recommendation that you only install what you absolutely need and nothing more. I cannot count the number of times I have worked on friend’s computers that are running slow and I just uninstall all the “junk” they installed. Or got installed when they installed something else. But I digress. I said I now I have another reason… recently Cisco detected strange activity coming from lots of computers all over the internet and traced it back to CCleaner. So, what happened? The reality is actually worse than expected. It turns out that hackers broke into CCleaner’s servers and embedded malware into their downloads. The malware is a backdoor app that would send information to the hackers’ server about the infected computer including the computer name, installed software and running processes and who knows what else. This is really bad. A very trusted application, albeit not essential, was wrapped in malware and loaded on millions of computers worldwide.

We work closely with Cisco security and our TeamCare clients had CCleaner automatically removed within hours of the identification of the threat. We only found that about 10 computers that we manage had it installed. So that is good for TeamCare users but what about everyone else. If you have CCleaner installed – remove it. While you are at it you should uninstall everything you don’t use. If you need help, we can help, just give us a call.

So why is this the Sad Saga of Hope? Because when we download and install software we are really just hoping it isn’t bad in some way. It is really “implied hope” because I bet most people don’t even think about the implications of installing something. Things are changing rapidly in the computer world and you need to be extra diligent about protecting yourself. So, in your best Elmer Fudd voice, in your head say, “be very very careful”.

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