Technique Slant Element

Tech Sensibility: The Newsletter (Oct 2015)

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  • If you find yourself collaboratively working on a data analytics project, consider configuring the original data sets as read-only. This way everyone can make their own copy and need not worry about overwriting or deleting the master data files. If necessary, assign one person to have write-access to the original data sets so they can be updated from time to time.

  • If you need a wireless keyboard and mouse for your computer or to manage video wall displays, keyboards with a built-in touch pad are a good solution. You will avoid having to handle two devices, which can be problematic, especially if you have to stand in front of the video wall display while making the changes.

  • We use email for everything these days because it is so convenient. Still, if you need to share a large file with a number of people, you may want to upload it on a website and share just a link (URL) to it. This saves time and storage space for everyone, and people can access it without having to look for it in their email.

  • If you manage a website - corporate or personal - consider securing it with Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate technology. Even if the website is internal to your organization, it is good practice to have SSL available, and there is no impact on convenience or speed. In addition, it provides another barrier to potential intruders looking for easy targets (remember that most intrusions come from inside the organization).


Protect your business from cyber intruders

During your every-day business operations, you and your employees engage dozens, if not hundreds, of online services- from vendors and service providers to banks and other financial institutions. There are three major junctures involved: you and your computer, your link to the internet or network, and the services you are accessing. Of these, you and your computer are the most vulnerable link. Here are some practical tips to help you protect your business from cyber intruders:

Leverage automatic software updates
Configure any and all software running on your computer for automatic software updates and upgrades. This will enable your computer programs to automatically check if there is a new software version available, in which case it will download it and ask you to install it. Software updates will help you keep your computer more secure and up-to-date with application fixes and new features.

Use strong mnemonic passwords
Always select a strong password for your computers and online services. Using mnemonic phrases will help you create secure passwords that are easy to remember. For example, .I had a great time in San Francisco last summer. becomes IhagtiSFls.

Use a different password for every service
Do not use the same password for all your online and web accounts. You need a strong, unique and different password for every online account that you own. Create the best passwords for your most important services like bank, credit card and healthcare websites.

Provide hard-to-guess answers to security questions
Many web sites require you to set up security questions in order to protect your online account information. An example security question may be, .What was the color of your first car?. For your ultimate protection, generate a random string of text (for example: btgcvu8rvj) for an answer.

Securely erase your computer before disposal
Before you sell or donate your computer, to help prevent identify theft, securely erase the contents of its hard disk to permanently remove all your data and make it unrecoverable. One application that does this is DBAN at Running it with default options is sufficient in most cases.


Be careful of overinclusion when conducting business. Copying too many recipients in an email or inviting too many people to meetings are common mistakes that waste everyone's time, including your own. Inviting more than seven to ten people to a meeting decreases the probability of making proper decisions. Including several layers of management additionally complicates the decision-making process. Research shows that many emails do not require a response, and that using reply-all responses and distribution lists should be avoided. The reply-all feature should only be used if there is valuable information to be shared. Furthermore, email is not a good collaboration medium. Consider using project management applications like AtTask, BaseCamp or Clarity instead.

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Being ethical in all business transactions is not only the appropriate thing to do, it is also an effective business concept.

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