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True North Networks has been serving the Swanzey area since 2002, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Has Microsoft Office 365 Beat Phishing?

Roger Grimes, KnowBe4's Data-Driven Defense Evangelist has something to say about that...Office 365 Phishing 1

"Microsoft recently announced a big update to their Microsoft Office 365 (O365) anti-phishing technical capabilities. According to Microsoft, their “miss phish catch rate” is down to near zero, beating all other O365 anti-phish competitors by orders of magnitude.

Has Microsoft Office 365 (0365) got phishing beat? Well, I wouldn’t get rid of your security awareness training just yet.

I think I have an interesting perspective. Until recently, I worked for Microsoft for over a decade and I still love the company, its people, and products. Microsoft security really is the best in the world. I’m also a long-term 0365 user for my private side work company. I’m now the data-driven defense evangelist for KnowBe4, the world’s largest security awareness training vendor.

I moved from Microsoft to KnowBe4 because I wanted to dedicate the remaining years of my computer security career to making the biggest impact in computer security possible. This isn’t hyperbole. Social engineering and phishing have been the number one way that malicious data breaches happen for over a decade.

If you want to have the biggest impact minimizing computer security risk you might as well jump into the lion’s den. And today, that means fighting social engineering and phishing.

From within Microsoft, I saw how hard Microsoft tried to stop phishing emails for its 0365 customers. Microsoft didn’t like that a majority of its large 0365 customers felt the need to purchase additional email protection. Every third-party anti-phishing purchase was a sign that Microsoft, itself, wasn’t doing enough to stop phishing.

It took years, but if you trust Microsoft’s data (and I have no reason to distrust it right now), it looks like Microsoft 0365 has some pretty solid anti-phishing results. According to their own data, phishing emails that escape detection and prevention are near zero percent. In fact, it’s hard to tell if their graphed data is saying exactly 0 percent or just above 0 percent. It’s that close, graphically.

The question some observers might have is if security awareness training is still worth the cost if Microsoft has “beat” phishing?"



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Yahoo agrees to pay $50M in damages over biggest security breach in history

Yahoo has said it will pay $50 million in damages and provide free credit-monitoring services to millions of Americans and Israelis following a data breach beginning in 2013 that yahoo 092216gettyled to as many as 3 billion accounts being compromised by hackers.

The Associated Press reports that Yahoo agreed to the restitution as part of a court settlement filed Monday that still awaits the approval of a federal judge.

The case stems from the largest data breach in the history of computing, in which 3 billion Yahoo accounts representing about 200 million people were compromised by hackers, some of whom were linked to Russia by the U.S.

The breach, which occurred in 2013 and 2014 but was not disclosed until December 2016, involved the names, emails, addresses, dates of birth and phone numbers of affected customers.

Yahoo, which is now overseen by Verizon subsidiary Oath, has maintained that passwords, credit card numbers and bank account information was not among the stolen information.

In April, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) fined the company $35 million for failing to properly notify customers and investors in a timely fashion about the data breach.

"Although information relating to the breach was reported to members of Yahoo’s senior management and legal department, Yahoo failed to properly investigate the circumstances of the breach and to adequately consider whether the breach needed to be disclosed to investors," the SEC said at the time.

The AP reported that eligible Yahoo accountholders who suffered losses from the security breach and have documentation could ask for up to 15 hours of lost time, or $375.

The free credit monitoring service's value was pegged at about $359 for two years, though the settlement didn't disclose how much Yahoo said it would pay to provide the coverage.

A hearing over the preliminary settlement is scheduled for federal court in California on Nov. 29. 


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How You Treat your Employees Will Determine the Fate of Your Company

One in five CEOs fail within their first 18 months of leading an organization, according to a study published in the Harvard Business Review. One-third of chief executives from treat your employeesFortune 500 companies don't make it past three years.

Achieving goals requires your teams’ support and commitment. If your team is not on board, this could lead to you being unsuccessful in your leadership role. Here are four of the most common pitfalls that can cast you in a negative light and “turn off” your employees thereby rendering your leadership ineffective.

1) The “Marionette” Trap - The challenge for any leader is working within pre-defined parameters, yet being able to apply your own talents to achieve results. In an age of uncertainty, many leaders are yielding to this trap of just playing it safe to preserve their position and privileges. They just follow orders. They never stand up for their team or question policies. The sad part is your employees are listening and seeing everything and are murmuring behind your back. If you have to be continuously directed, you are in fact a puppet.

I know of some boards who only hire managers that they can control. If your only concern is to impress top management you will be surely losing points with your employees. There must be a balance, yes, you want to impress those at the top, but what about your employees? In the end no one takes you seriously, neither the board you are trying to impress nor the employees you have ignored.

2) The “King Kong” Trap - Some leaders when they reach to the top immediately forget where they came from. These type of leaders possess a superiority complex and like to draw the distinction between management and staff. Great leaders don’t talk down to their employees or make them feel inferior. How can you motivate the troops when you are out of sight? Come down from the mountaintop and mix and mingle with your subordinates. Respect is a must. Show respect, not just for your employees, but all those you come in contact with, inclusive of the kitchen attendant, janitor, security guard…etc. Your in-house reputation will quickly spread.

Bill Nuti former CEO at NCR Corp - While the company’s revenues grew to $6.2 billion in 2013 from $6.0 billion in 2012, employees showed a strong dislike of their CEO, Bill Nuti. One current employee, while commenting on Glassdoor, wrote to upper management, “We carry your water every day, and you disrespect us every day, we’re just your minions. You put out surveys, obviously you pay no attention to them or things would begin changing.

3) The “Superman” Trap - They think the organization revolves around them. Some start behaving like they are the owners of the company. This trap includes making all of the decisions soloignoring feedback you don't like and taking the credit. " Try never to be the smartest person in the room. And if you are, I suggest you invite smarter people ... or find another room" ~Michael Dell. Letting your ego get ahead of you and thinking you know it all is a sure path to failure. Be generous with Reward and Recognition and "Thank Yous." Recognize publicly. Use collaborative skills to arrive at solutions. Admit what you don’t know. Showing some vulnerability allows you to strengthen relations with your team. You’ll build trust more easily.

4) The “Taskmaster” Trap - Micromanaging and breathing down someone’s neck all the time can be very disheartening. Sometimes knowing when to step back and let your employees do their work is what they need. Micromanagement suffocates, demoralizes and kills creativity. If you hired someone, it means you believe they are capable of doing the job. Then trust them to get the job done. You don’t need to be constantly monitoring their every movement. The best ideas and advancements are a result of empowering your team. Furthermore, do you brush over your teams’ successes, automatically working towards the next goal with a bland acknowledgement? Is results your only motivator? Continuously drilling employees is a sure way to lose points. If you ignore the wins of your team, you miss a vital opportunity, to not only inspire, but build a more personal connection with your team which can give your leadership personal brand a boost.

Many leaders don’t stop to celebrate their small successes. One notable exception is Richard Branson who, at the Virgin group, integrates work and play. Richard Branson on How to Make Employees Happy - “Don’t forget to celebrate achievements and have some fun while doing so.”

Most businesses put customers first while employees are just secondary. Employees are the branches of a tree that makes a company grow. They are your best ambassadors. If we treat people only as the means to an end, we will never have their loyalty. Don't just consider them as a robot on your cog-like production line. Demonstrate that you value people and they in turn, will take care of customers.


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True North Networks is Proud Sponsor of StartSmart: Birth Gifts with a Purpose

True North Networks is a proud supporter of #StartSmart, as part of Impact Monadnock. Monadnock United Way


If you or your company are going to give a gift, you might as well make it a fun, brain-developing gift. The most important thing anyone can do for children (and communities can do for the future!) is invest in brain development at an early age. This gift shows that you care about the parent, the child and your community.

The following organizations have pledged to ensure more books for local kids through the purchase of StartSmart birth gifts:
• C&S Wholesale Grocers
• Cedarcrest Center for Children with Disabilities
• Clark-Mortenson Insurance
• Communicators Group
• Electronic Imaging Materials
• Filtrine Manufacturing Company
• IPG Employee Benefits
• Isis Latham, RVP, Primerica
• Keene Housing
• Monadnock Food Co-op
• Monadnock United Way
• Savings Bank of Walpole
• True North Networks

If your organization would like to join us and be added to this list, please contact

StartSmart: Birth Gifts with a Purpose is supported by the Impact Monadnock Business Ambassadors, with additional support from generous sponsors.


For more information or to learn how to get your business involved, visit their website here:

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Could the Photos You’re Sharing Online Be Putting Your Child at Risk?

As a parent, you’ve equipped their phones, tablets, and laptops with security software and increased safeguards on devices throughout your home. These efforts go a long way family safety cyber tipsin protecting your family’s privacy from prying eyes. Unfortunately, many parents are part of the problem when it comes down to communicating and sharing photos online of your kids.

Can you relate?

  • 30% of parents post a photo of their child to social media daily.
  • 58% of parents do not ask for permission from their children before posting images of them on social media.
  • 22% think that their child is too young to provide permission; 19% claim that it’s their own choice, not their child’s choice.

The surprising part:

  • 71% of parents who share images of their kids online agree that the images could end up in the wrong hands.
  • Parents’ biggest concerns with sharing photos online include pedophilia (49%), stalking (48%), and kidnapping (45%).
  • Other risks of sharing photos online may also be other children seeing the image and engaging in cyberbullying (31%), their child feeling embarrassed (30%), and their child feeling worried or anxious (23%).

Together, we can dilute the risks of photo sharing, agree to post smarter, and to pause a little longer. We can look out for one another’s privacy, and share in ways that keep us all safe:

Ways to help minimize photo sharing risks:

  • Pause before uploading. Ask yourself: Is there anything in this photo that could be used as an identifier? Have I inadvertently given away personal information such as a birthdate, a visible home addresses, a school uniform, financial details, or potential passwords? Is the photo I’m about to upload something I’d be okay with a stranger seeing? 
  • Review your privacy settings.  You can minimize the scope of your audience to only trusted friends and family by customizing your privacy settings within each social network.  Use the controls available to boost your family privacy.
  • Voice your sharing preferences with others. While it may be awkward, it’s okay to request friends and family to reign in or refrain from posting photos of your children online. This rule also applies to other people’s public comments about your vacation plans, new house, children’s names or birthdates, or any other content that gives away too much data. Don’t hesitate to promptly delete those comments by others and explain yourself in a private message if necessary.
  • Turn off geotagging on photos. Many social networks will tag a user’s location when that user uploads a photo. To make sure this doesn’t happen, simply turn off geotagging abilities on your phone. This precaution is particularly important when posting photos away from home.
  • Be mindful of identity theft. Identity theft is no joke. Consider using an identity theft protection solution that can help protect your identity and safeguard your personal information.

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