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Tolar Systems Blog

Tolar Systems has been serving the Abilene area since 2000, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Tolar Systems has been serving the Abilene area since 2000, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

How Can Managed Service Providers Deliver Cost-Effective Storage?


Many small and medium sized businesses have asked how managed service providers can provide cost-effective storage for the data their businesses generate. Whether that data comes in the form of files, documents, folders, customer and employee information, billing and financial information, or other types of data relevant to your business, one thing is clear: small and medium sized businesses are being inundated with data.

Managed IT service providers like Tolar Systems can help your organization manage your most important business data, by delivering access and infrastructure to cost-effective data storage. Here’s how.

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Is Public Wifi Safe? 5 Wifi Facts You Should Know


One of the questions we are frequently asked by the mobile device users we manage is whether public wifi is safe, and how to use it securely. One of the biggest challenges facing IT organizations and managed service providers like Tolar is protecting mobile devices that have access to company data. Unfortunately, one common practice that can make this more difficult is when mobile users connect to public wifi without knowing whether their data is secure.

In fact, so common is this practice that 53% of mobile users and 70% of tablet users stated in a Kaspersky Labs survey that they use public wifi. A similar study by the Identity Theft Resource Center found that while 79% of those surveyed understood that using public wifi could lead to identity theft, only 29% of used appropriate security tactics to protect themselves.

Many public wifi users access their work email or other business-related data via these networks. So how can you protect yourself and your business when using free wifi or a hotspot? Here’s what you need to know.

How Safe is Public Wifi?

The short answer to the question above is, not very. The trouble with public wifi is that the data traveling across a wifi network is unencrypted and can be accessed by anyone in the area unless measures are taken to securely encrypt it. This puts users at risk of identity theft. Public wifi users are also at greater risk of accidentally downloading malware or viruses by clicking links on unsecured networks.

is public wifi safe

Together, these factors mean using public wifi is inherently risky – hackers who may be nearby can access your data through public wifi; it’s even the case that some public wifi networks and hotspots may have been set up by hackers for exactly this purpose. So, anytime you are thinking of using public wifi or a hotspot, you should be aware that your data is at risk unless you’ve taken measures to protect it.

How to Use Public Wifi Hotspots Safely

Using public wifi is risky but there are measures you can take to use it safely. Here’s our advice:

Secure Your Device – There are two security measures that should be taken to secure your device before using any public wifi networks. The first measure is to use device encryption to protect the data that resides on it. This consists of using passcode protection that automatically encrypts the data on the phone should an unauthorized user try to log into the files residing on it.

iPhone, Blackberry and Windows Phone users can easily encrypt their mobile devices. However, this capability is only available on more recent Android devices. Older movilw device users may want to avoid using pubic wifi if their device cannot be secured.

The second measure that should be taken is to protect the device with anti-virus software. That way, even if your connection isn’t secure, your device will still be protected against viruses and malware.

Use VPN - Probably the best way to ensure your business data is safe is to use a VPN connection (Virtual Private Network) to connect your mobile device to any wireless network. This is a must if you are connecting to a business account, and is a good idea even if you are only planning to access personal accounts.

Be Wary of Wifi – Because hackers may set up bogus wifi near popular hotspots (think popular coffeehouses or airport lounge areas, make sure to verify the name of the network you want to connect to. Look for official signage or ask an employee to ensure you’re signing on to the correct network.

Think Twice Before Logging In – If you’re using public wifi, think carefully before logging into any sensitive applications, such as social media, online banking, e-commerce apps, or any application that asks you to enter a credit card number.

Using a public wifi connection requires users to understand the inherent risk involved with these types of connections and take steps to protect their personal and business data. At Tolar Systems, we offer network security and mobile device management services that can help to ensure that your devices are safe. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.

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Tolar Systems Partners with Intuit as an Authorized Intuit Reseller

Tolar Systems is pleased to announce that we’ve recently partnered with Intuit as an Authorized Intuit Reseller. Joining this program allows us to expand our services to including purchasing and support for the world’s leading accounting applications for small business.

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Managed IT Services Trends to Watch for 2018


What managed IT services industry trends are we watching for 2018? Read more to find out the top five trends we expect to affect our business and the business of our clients in 2018.

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How to Select New Accounting Software for a Small Business in 6 Steps


The decision to select new accounting software for a small business is one of the most important technology choices a small business needs to make. Learn more about how to make this important decision from Tolar Systems.

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The Future is Now for Attorneys with Virtual Law Offices


Traditional professions like the legal industry aren’t immune to the transformative power of technology, which is why virtual law offices are a hot trend for solo lawyers and small firms that want to compete against their larger rivals. In fact, virtual law offices have been identified as one of the top trends reshaping the legal industry.

But exactly what is a virtual law office and how does it work? Learn more about it from Tolar Systems on today's blog.

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Tips to Ensure a Smoother Acquisition or Merger


The old saying goes that two heads are better than one, and when it comes to company growth, sometimes combining two companies is also better than going it alone. Mergers and acquisitions (or M&A, as these deals are known in the finance and legal worlds) are big business these days, with $4.73 billion in global M&A deals having been recorded between 2011 and 2016. Learn more about mergers and acquisitions and how they impact your company, its culture and your technology on today's Tolar Systems blog.

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Why Tolar Systems Buys Professional-Grade Equipment.

office technology

If you’re in need of a new desktop computer or other technology solution for your business, such as a printer or mobile device, it might be tempting to run down to your nearest consumer electronics store to get the item you need. You might even be thinking about buying from an online store. On today's blog, Tolar Systems shares five reasons why it's a mistake to buy anything other than professional-grade equipment for your business.

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Tips for Setting up a Virtual Office for Accountants


The virtual office is catching on in many industries, as technology makes it truly possible for busy professionals like CPAs, accountants, bookkeepers and others to work from anywhere. But, to be truly effective, virtual accounting offices must meet a few requirements. Learn more about them on today's blog.

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Voice Over IP or Landline – What’s Best for Your Business?


Thanks to advances in technology, choosing a phone system for your business is more complicated than it used to be.

Today, businesses need to consider multiple alternatives when deciding what sort of system they want to use: VOIP, “virtual phones,” PBX / landline, or software applications such as Skype or Skype for Business. How can you choose between VoIP or Landline? Learn more from Tolar Systems.

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How to Select the Right Core Software for Your Business


Whether it’s called digital transformation or software implementation, selecting the right core software for your business is an essential task for businesses that want to grow, compete and become more profitable. But how do you know when your business needs to select new software, and what should you look for? Learn more from Tolar Systems.

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The Benefits of SaaS - Advantages of Software as a Service


Many clients ask us, “what are the Benefits of SaaS (Software as a Service) applications?” It is a question being asked of many managed service providers as SaaS applications like Microsoft Office 365, Sharepoint and Skype are adopted by more small businesses.

One IT industry estimate says that by the end of 2017, 94% of small businesses will have launched at least one SaaS application.Yet, in spite of the fact that the vast majority of businesses are using them, SaaS applications are not well understood outside the tech industry.

Perhaps that is because Software as a Service goes by so many other names: SaaS, cloud software, internet-based applications, just to name a few.

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What to Look for in a Technology Partner – The Value of Long Term Relationships


Looking for a technology partner isn’t like finding other partners for your business. We establish long-term relationships with our clients, becoming an essential part of your business that ensures your technology works where, when and how you need it to work. Learn more from Tolar Systems.

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Need IT Services for Small Businesses? Why Managed Services is The Right Choice


If you’re looking for IT services for small businesses, it’s important to know your options. It’s becoming increasingly difficult for small businesses to be competitive in any industry without the tools and technology to support their business requirements – and the expectations of their clients. Managed service providers are the smart choice for businesses that need reliable, affordable IT support.

Learn more from Tolar Systems.

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What to Look For in a Managed Services Partner – Onboarding


When you’re trying to determine if choosing a managed services partner for your business, the onboarding process the partner uses should a key consideration. Why? Because the onboarding process sets the tone for the entire engagement. Learn more about why the onboarding process should be an important consideration when selecting a managed service provider on today’s blog.

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What to Look For in a Managed Service Provider – Ongoing Services


There’s a lot to consider when you’re choosing a managed service provider (MSP). What services and capabilities should you look for in an MSP to ensure that the ongoing services you will receive are a good fit for your business needs? Here are a few of the things you should be looking for, if you want your business relationship with your MSP to be a positive one over the long term. Learn more from Tolar Systems.

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Eight Signs Break/Fix IT is Right For Your Business


Could break/fix IT be right for your business? At Tolar Systems, we pride ourselves on providing professional, standards-based IT services to clients across Texas. We prevent problems with our clients’ IT, support their business growth and productivity and provide predictable, professional results at an affordable price. But, even though we think our service model is the best for most businesses, we know that managed services probably isn’t for everyone. For some, break/fix, hourly IT services may be a better fit.

How do you know if break/fix, hourly IT services is right for you? Learn more from Tolar Systems.

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Why IT Standards Matter to Your Business


One of the major advantages of working with an IT managed service provider like Tolar Systems is that we can help align your technology with industry standards. But what kind of standards? And how does being aligned with standards help our customers’ business?

We’re going to talk about IT standards and why they matter on today’s blog.

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Disaster Recovery: What Business Owners Need to Know


With natural disasters like fires in California, earthquakes in Mexico and Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria in the news, not to mention man-made disasters like the data breach at Equifax, many people are wondering what to do if disaster strikes. But for a business owner, the challenge is even greater. If you want your business to survive and thrive, you need a plan to keep your business systems and data safe and your business up and running even when the worst happens.

Tolar System can help harden businesses against these threats with business continuity planning and disaster recovery planning.  Learn more about them from Tolar Systems.

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Microsoft Branding: OneDrive or OneDrive for Business?


As a leading Texas managed service provider and reseller of Microsoft cloud-based Office365 applications, we are often asked about the differences between Microsoft’s personal and business-branded products. One of the products that causes the most confusion is Microsoft OneDrive and Microsoft OneDrive for Business.

We’re going to compare and contrast these two very different products in today’s blog. Read more after the jump.

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