May 2018 Newsletter

Hello! We’re pleased to send you this monthly issue of Monthly Bytes. It’s our way of saying that you’re important to us and we truly value your business. Please feel free to pass this newsletter on to friends and colleagues. Enjoy!

If you don’t have a managed-service agreement in place, please let us know and we’ll conduct a needs analysis and provide you with a proposal free of charge!

For a printable PDF version of this newsletter, click here

URGENT NEWS

Microsoft’s May patch update has a security update (KB 4103718) that can cause serious issues for Windows 7 computers.  For many computers, this update will cause loss of network connectivity due to an incompatibility with some network drivers.  We have blocked this update temporarily for our managed customers until Microsoft releases an updated patch.  If you are not one of our managed customers and run into issues with this update, call us at (404) 424-8585 and our technicians can walk you through the process of updating the network drivers or come on site and fix the issue for you.

Five Top Tips for Making the Most out of Outlook

  1. Organize your emails
    With Outlook 365, you can store your emails in folders. Lots of users employ this feature to archive their emails, yet very few people tap into its potential to help clear the inbox and prioritize tasks. To use this functionality, simply right-click on “Inbox,” select “New folder” and name it, and create a set of folders covering all your requirements; e.g., “Urgent,” “Non-urgent,” “Information only.” You can then move new emails to the appropriate folder. Review your folders regularly, and you’ll have a tidier inbox and a better-organized schedule!
  2. Organize your tasks
    When you don’t have to answer an email immediately, you can move it out of your inbox but still be reminded of it. Simply drag the email onto the task list icon in Outlook, set the date by which it needs to be dealt with and a reminder date. You can then put the email in your to-do folder, confident that Outlook will remind you to take action when required.
  3. One-Click cleaning
    When you’ve been away from your desk, you may find a daunting buildup of emails waiting. With Outlook, you can reduce this without losing any information: simply click on the “Clean Up” button and “Clean Up Folder”. Outlook will automatically delete all emails in a thread except the last, which will, of course, contain all the emails in one place.
  4. Don’t keep repeating yourself
    You may find you frequently type the same thing in emails. In Outlook, you can save yourself this labor using the Quick Parts functionality. Next time you type a phrase you use regularly, highlight it, click “Insert” then “Quick Parts” and “Save Selection to Quick Part Gallery.” Name your phrase and click “OK”. Next time you need that phrase, click “Insert”, “Quick Parts”, select the phrase, and it will be pasted into your email with minimal effort.
  5. Speed up with Quick Steps
    If you regularly perform the same task, Quick Steps save you time. Say you have a regular weekly email that you forward to your associate before arranging a meeting regarding the contents. Quick Steps can do this more efficiently: Click on “Create New” in “Quick Steps”, name the Quick Step and select “Forward” as the action. Enter your associate’s email, then add, “Create a task with attachment” and click “Finish.” Every time you receive that email, select that Quick Step and Outlook will open the functionality you need to forward the email and set a due date and reminder for your meeting with the associate.

Increase Your Office 365 Security with Minimal Effort

Microsoft has announced a series of security upgrades to their Office 365 suite to protect users against cybercrime. Here’s our lowdown on what you can expect:

Files Restore: All files stored in Microsoft OneDrive accounts are protected by the Files Restore feature. If they become corrupted, infected with ransomware, or accidentally deleted, users can restore all the files on OneDrive to the state they were at any time in the previous 30 days.

Ransomware detection and recovery: Office 365 now has the capability to detect ransomware attacks and notify users via their desktop, email or mobile. It can even guide users through a process to restore their files to a point before the attack took place.

Password-protected sharing: If a user shares anything from their OneDrive account, they can now add a password to prevent any unauthorized person gaining access to the file in the event an email goes astray or is accidentally forwarded.

Email encryption: The Outlook program of the Office 365 suite encrypts all emails end to end, protecting the user even when the recipient may not have the most secure email. If a security issue is detected, the recipient will be asked to navigate to the Office 365 webpage where they will be given a password to view the email or offered the chance to access the email through a secure provider. Outlook will also detect if an email contains confidential information (e.g., social security number) and offer the user the chance to encrypt their email.

Forwarding prevention: users can now access email settings preventing any recipient from forwarding or copying any email sent with Outlook. Any Microsoft Office documents that are sent attached to an email will remain encrypted even if the email is forwarded, so any secondary recipient will not be able to open them.

Advanced link checking: this feature will be introduced later in 2018. Once active, when users click on a link in any Microsoft Office 365 utility, such as Word, Excel or PowerPoint, the program will immediately check whether the linked website is a security threat and warn the user accordingly.

News Bytes

New Facebook Community Standards Announced
Facebook has finally shared the rules it applies to determine whether to ban posts. Here’s a list of the things that will lead to removal:

Credible violence: Threats of violence will be taken down if they are “credible.” Instructions on how to make and use weapons will also be removed.

Hate speech: Direct attacks on people based on sex, race, country, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, disability, disease or gender identity.

Graphic violence: Images of violence involving “real people or animals”; these are allowed for news purposes but not when the context or captions indicate they are being shared for sensational or titillating reasons.

Child sexual exploitation: Any content that sexually exploits children, or endangers them, is banned, and Facebook will report it to the relevant authorities. Nude images of children, even if posted in good faith; e.g., a toddler having a bath, will be removed to avoid exploitation.

Adult nudity and sexual activity: This is generally banned, but permitted in certain contexts; for example, when part of a protest or used educationally. Breastfeeding pictures are permitted, as are post-mastectomy images. Digital content containing nudity and sexual activity comes under the same rules, but paintings, drawings and sculptures do not.

Google Gun Gone for Good?
Google has removed the gun emoji from the Android platform, replacing it with a colorful super soaker.  Google representatives said it was part of an effort to have a consistent message across all platforms.  Apple replaced its gun symbol with a green water pistol in 2016, though Microsoft has yet to follow suit.

Question of the Month

Question: What does Mbps mean?

Answer:
When looking at almost anything to do with Internet hardware and services, you’ll frequently encounter the acronym Mbps. For example, you may be told that your Internet provider can offer you speeds of up to X Mbps… but what does this mean?

Mbps stands for “megabits per second,” which is the scale used by the Internet industry to determine speed. Many people mistakenly think that any service that promises to run at X Mbps equates to X megabytes per second; however, this is not the case: The two are very different. A megabit is equivalent to 0.125 megabytes, so if your Internet service provider tells you that you can get 30 Mbps, you will be downloading at a speed of 3.75 megabytes per second.

Bits have been used to measure data travelling through systems since long before the Internet; the word is short for “binary digit,” and that is the form in which all computer information is stored and transmitted. So, next time you wonder why your 150 MB album download doesn’t take three seconds to download via a 50 Mbps Internet connection, remember that you’re downloading in bits, not bytes.

9 New Gmail Features That Everyone’s Talking About

Google recently announced new features for its widely used email service; some are already available, others will be phased in soon. Here’s a brief summary of what awaits:

Hovering
If you hover over an email, you’ll be offered a list of things you can do, including archiving, deleting, marking as read, or snoozing. When you receive calendar invites, you can reply quickly and easily by hovering over them.

New panel
On the right of your screen, you’ll find an icon for Google Calendar, Keep, and Tasks (a new feature). Previously, a new tab or page would open; now a panel will slide out, allowing you to access those features without leaving your inbox.

Snoozing
If you don’t need an email immediately, you can hover over it and select snooze; enter a time, and it will disappear… only to reappear at your chosen time at the top of your inbox.

Smart Reply
When you reply to an email, Gmail will offer you three stock responses that you can paste into your email with one click.

Offline support
Previously unavailable without add-ons, you can now search through all emails that you sent and received within the last 90 days and perform all the usual available actions while offline.

Confidential mode
With this feature, emails can be sent with an expiry date, and you can withdraw your email at any time. Recipients can’t forward, download or copy confidential emails. You can also add a password that the recipient will receive by SMS, without which the email can’t be opened.

Nudging
If you’ve forgotten to reply to an email, Gmail can now “nudge” you after a certain period of inactivity.

Assistive unsubscribe
Gmail will now remember which newsletters and mails you regularly open and automatically unsubscribe you from the ones that you don’t read.

High-priority notifications
Gmail mobile now allows you to select which addresses from which you’ll receive a notification so that your working day isn’t continually interrupted by irrelevant messages.

APP OF THE MONTH: PIGMENT

In recent years, there has been an explosion in coloring books for adults. Now fans can color in digitally, using the Pigment app. The app has hundreds of different “pages” to color in, and dozens of different brushes and pencils with which to do it – there’s even a “cheat” option by which users tap the segment they want to color, and the app does it for them. Available free (ad-supported) for Android and iOS.

 

Cartoon of the month

Offer of the Month

All data and information provided in this newsletter is for informational purposes only. Cogentes makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, correctness, suitability, or validity of any information in this newsletter and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.