Los Angeles College Pays Hackers $28,000 Ransom for Data

January 20th, 2017

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Last week, the Los Angeles Community College District’s (LACCD) computer systems were held for a whopping $28,000 ransom—and because they paid, the ransomware makers are now that much richer.

Once again, the whole thing could have been avoided with some cheap $250 backup software. You can almost hear the campus management kicking themselves from here.

The worst part is the justification the LACCD gave for the ransomware payout—and the consequences for other educational institutions in the future.

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Backup Programs: The Six Essential Software Requirements

January 18th, 2017

Checklist for what to look for in Backup Programs

There are a lot of backup programs out there, and like any purchasing decision, it can be hard to sift the good from the bad. But when it comes to premium backup software, there are six traits they all have in common.

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Most Vulnerable Software of 2016: Anything Linux Based

January 16th, 2017

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This year Linux has taken the gold, silver, and bronze medal for software vulnerabilities, beating out notoriously unsafe applications such as Adobe Flash and Acrobat.

The Android Mobile OS, which is based on the Linux Kernel, took first place with 523 Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE). Second place for this dubious “award” went to Debian Linux with 319 vulnerabilities, and third to Ubunto Linux with 278 CVEs.

The Linux Kernel itself ranked at 10th place, higher in security holes than both the Mac OS X and every modern release of Windows or Windows Server. The statistic is based on vulnerabilities reported by security researchers and compiled by CVE Details.

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File Backup Software – Why Copy and Paste Doesn’t Cut It

January 13th, 2017

Copy & Paste vs using File Backup Software

When some people first hear about backup software, the first question they ask is this: “Why don’t you just copy and paste your files?”

It’s a fair question, especially since it’s very easy to just dump your simple data—particularly Word docs and photos—onto a USB stick. In comparison, paying for and then opening some backup software seems like overkill.

For backing up a few individual files on a non-regular basis, this is a perfectly fine way to do things. But there are several good reasons you want to use file backup software instead of a simple copy and paste for your business data.

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Koolova: The World’s First ‘Nice’ Ransomware?

January 6th, 2017

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Every time I write an article on a new form of ransomware, I’m always surprised. And Koolova, the latest ransomware to hit the scene, does not disappoint.

Last year saw a host of bizarre ransomware variants. There was Popcorn Time, which let you infect two users to get a free decryption key. Jigsaw, which played out like having a Saw-movie villain on your computer. And the Cerber ransomware, which hijacked people’s speakers to talk to them directly.

So you’d think the ransomware makers had run out of tricks. But they forgot to mention something.

Apparently, Jigsaw has a brother. His name is Koolova, and he’s concerned that you might fall under his brother’s influence.

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Looking for The Best Backup Software? A Free Backup Guide

January 5th, 2017

backups drives and backups files

On the quest for the best backup software to protect your data? We’ll save you some time—there’s actually no such thing.

That may be quite shocking to hear, especially since we’re a backup and disaster recovery company. “Why wouldn’t they say they’re the best backup software for every business running every sort of environment?”

The truth is that any software service that claims they’re the “best backup software” across the board, no questions asked, is frankly lying. And as a consumer, you should be highly suspicious of any software service that makes this claim.

That’s why we’ve written a free backup software guide to on what is best for your systems, and not necessarily the best for everyone else’s.

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Cortana to FamTana: Your Windows 10 Helper is going to be a mom.

December 28th, 2016

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Move over Cortana, and make way for FamTana. Microsoft has decided to make Windows 10 PC more family focused, and first on the list is the inbuilt virtual assistant.

The move is part of a bid to take on Amazon’s Echo and Google Home. The updated Cortana is part of a Home Hub feature planned for Windows 10, which includes shared Family Accounts and a Family Desktop.

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Invisible Malware Can Now Hide In Banner Pixels with “Stegano”

December 22nd, 2016

Stegano can hide in banner pixels

Over the last two months, millions of visitors to mainstream websites have been exposed to a new form of malware embedded in banner pixels. And if you didn’t see it, don’t be surprised.

The new malware, “Stegano”, is nearly invisible to the naked eye. Its code has been embedded in parameters controlling the transparency of pixels used to display banner ads. Since it’s buried in the alpha channel, even watchful ad networks find it difficult to detect.

The malware’s name borrows from the word Steganography; the practice of concealing secret messages inside a larger document. The medium is new, but the practice dates back to at least 440BC.

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What is SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) and Should I Use It?

December 21st, 2016

SaaS vs On-site Licensing

You may have heard of SaaS, and despite what it sounds like, it’s not being cheeky or rude to someone. It’s actually Software-as-a-Service, and according to some service providers, it’s the next big thing—second only to cloud.

But any veteran business knows hype can be deceiving, particularly when it comes to a software service. Yes, a SaaS service may be cutting edge, but is it what’s best for your business?

If you’re weighing up going with SaaS applications or perpetual software, read on. We go right into the pros and cons of both software models.

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Support Availability, Happy Holidays from BackupAssist!

December 16th, 2016

Santa Claus

It’s that time of year again that people start saying ‘It’s that time of year again’.

And with the Holiday season approaching, we at BackupAssist would like to sincerely thank all our loyal customers. We love going about making software to protect your servers like happy little elves—and we’ll be busily working in 2017 to do the same!

However, even elves need rest, and so some of our support team will be taking a well-deserved break on the following dates to enjoy some festive cheer.

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