Archive for October 22, 2018

IEEE Selects Martello for Ottawa’s 2018 Outstanding ICT Company Recognition Award

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 22, 2018 by itnerd

Martello Technologies Group Inc. accepted the “2018 Outstanding Information and Communications Technology Company” Recognition Award from IEEE Ottawa. The award was presented at the 74th Annual IEEE Ottawa Section AGM and Banquet on Friday, October 19th at the Shaw Centre.

IEEE Ottawa Section presents the IEEE Ottawa Section Awards annually as recognition for its members, volunteers, chapters, affinity groups and student branches to provide recognition and appreciation for the industry and organizations.

The Outstanding Technology Company Recognition Award recognizes an industry or organization that has made an outstanding contribution to science, engineering, and technology. Awards are given in the following three categories: Outstanding Information & Communications Technology Company Recognition Award, Outstanding High Technology Company Recognition Award, and Outstanding Clean Technology Company Recognition Award.

The Award Committee selects the winners for the “IEEE Ottawa Section Outstanding Technology Company Recognition Award” based on innovation and patents, products and technology, benefits and services for the region, province, and country, employment and market driven strategy for the local and international industry.

More than 5,000 businesses and government organizations are already benefiting from Martello’s solutions in 150 countries around the world, and Martello’s proven solutions continue to be recognized by the industry. In September, the company received a Frost & Sullivan Leadership Award for NPM (Network Performance Management) and ranked as Ottawa’s Fastest Growing Company on the Growth 500 list of Canada’s Fastest Growing Companies. In August 2018, the company received the INTERNET TELEPHONY SD-WAN Product of the Year Award, and in June 2018 Martello debuted on the Branham300 listing of Canada’s top ICT companies.

 

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New Paragon Mac Toolbox Unites 6 Essential Cross-Platform Data Exchange Tools

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 22, 2018 by itnerd

Paragon Software Group has released Paragon Mac ToolBox — a bundle of six tools for users frequently working in Mac and Windows environments. The toolkit contains the most essential technologies for overcoming cross-platform limitations and incompatibilities when switching between Mac and Windows systems. Paragon Mac ToolBox is available for $39.95, saving users 50 percent off the original product price on all tools if purchased separately.

Paragon Mac Toolbox includes:

  • NTFS for Mac, an award-winning driver that grants users full read/write access to Microsoft NTFS-formatted data on Mac systems. Like the majority of Paragon System Link drivers, once the program is installed, users can immediately navigate volumes, as well as read, edit, copy, or create files and folders. All product options and functionality, including information on mounted volumes, system startup, and verification can be accessed conveniently from the Mac Finder menu bar.
  • APFS for Windows is a driver for smooth operations with APFS-formatted volumes on a Windows PC.
  • HFS+ for Windows, a driver for seamlessly working with macOS HFS+ formatted volumes on PC.
  • NTFS-HFS+ Converter converts NTFS volumes to HFS+ volumes or vice versa while guaranteeing no data loss.
  • APFS-HFS+ Converter easily reverts files from APFS to the older HFS+ for specific operations (HFS+ volumes only).
  • CampTune provides a simple user interface with a slider to easily redistribute Boot Camp storage space between Mac and Windows.

Paragon Mac Toolbox is available for $39.95 at https://www.paragon-software.com/home/mac-toolbox/

Guest Post: NordVPN Discusses The Targeting Of iPhone Users By Cybercriminals

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 22, 2018 by itnerd

A new cell phone scam targeted at iPhone users tries to steal theirApple login details by sending a fake Spotify/iTunes email.

The phishing email claims to be from Apple and Spotify. If a user clicks on the link, the email says the user had bought a year of Spotify Premium for $150.99 and links to a page to “review your subscription.” A fake Apple landing page – which looks like a real one – then asks for log-in details.

“One of the most common types of phishing is an email that contains a fraudulent link. In this case, users are likely to give away their personal information, because they will be obviously worried they might be charged $150,” said Ruby Gonzalez, Communications Director of NordVPN. “The supposed website of a trusted brand,such as Apple, creates a fake sense of familiarity, which  misleads people into entering their private information.”

According to Apple, if a user receives an email asking them to update their account or payment information, they should only do so directly in their Settings on the Apple device that they are using. Users can update their passwords at appleid.apple.com.

NordVPN also recommends using its CyberSec feature, which is designed to block advertisements, malicious sites, and phishing links. While it’s still not available on iOS, CyberSec can be used on Windows, macOS, Linux, as well as on the mobile app for Android.

NordVPN provides these tips for spotting a phishing email:

  1. Check the sender’s address. Don’t just trust the display name – pay attention to the email address. If the domain looks suspicious (e.g., info@secure.apple.com), don’t open the email.

 

  1. Look for spelling and grammar mistakes. Serious companies don’t usually send out emails with bad grammar and basic spelling mistakes.

 

  1. Take a look at the greeting. Your bank or another legitimate institution would often address you with your full name. If you see a vague “Dear user” instead, remain vigilant.

 

  1. Don’t click on links– instead, hover your mouse on the button to see the destination link. Check if it looks legitimate and, especially, if it contains the “https” part to indicate a secure connection.

 

  1. When in doubt, contact your bank or other institution over the phone or alternative email address and ask to confirm if the email is legitimate.

 

  1. In addition, two-factor authenticationcan be set on iOS devices. That way, a hacker would have to go through another control even if they have stolen a user’s login information.

 

For additional safety, use a VPN. Using a VPN when browsing can protect you against malware and phishing that targets online access points.

A Follow Up To My Move From Rogers To TELUS Mobility

Posted in Commentary on October 22, 2018 by itnerd

Since I wrote about My Move From Rogers To TELUS Mobility a little while ago, some things have happened based on the fact that TELUS saw this in that story in relation to my wife wanting to move to TELUS, but being unable to as their in market plans couldn’t match what Rogers was serving up to her:

But if someone from TELUS is reading this, you’d gain a customer for life if you could match her $65 for 5GB plan that she has with Rogers.

A couple of days after that post went up, I had several people from Telus reach out to me. In particular was Anna from The Office Of The President who facilitated getting my wife onto a plan that was slightly more expensive than her Rogers plan. But was a better value as she had more data (6GB as opposed to 5GB) among other features. To sweeten the pot, she would waive the $30 fee to activate a SIM card. My wife decided to take Anna’s offer and we made our way to the same TELUS store at Sherway Gardens in Toronto so that she could make the switch. What likely helped to move things along was that the staff remembered me from when I made my switch to TELUS. But even without that, I think she would have no issue doing the following:

  • Assess her needs from a data plan perspective.
  • Do all the “paperwork” to not only make her a TELUS customer, but port her number from Rogers to TELUS. I say “paperwork” because it was all done electronically. Not one scrap of paper was used.
  • Have her sign off on all of the above on a tablet and have all the documentation  emailed to her.
  • Helped her to set up a My TELUS account to allow her to manage my account either online or via the My TELUS App

It all took about 45 minutes and went pretty smoothly. My wife noted the following as part of her experience:

  • The seats what were in the TELUS store were very comfortable. And that was important to her as she was sitting for 45 minutes or so.
  • The person that she dealt with made zero attempts to upsell her which she absolutely appreciated. That same person also ensured that everything worked before she left the store which was also appreciated. However, he was clearly under the weather and should have perhaps taken a sick day. Seeing as that it is close to flu season, that’s something that is worth considering by TELUS. Another thing that my wife would offer up as advice is to set some expectations up front about how long the process would take in terms of setting her up up on TELUS as some people may not have properly accounted for the time that might be required to sign up.
  • The design of the store which I have written about previously appealed to her. The only suggestion that she would make is that the store could be a bit bigger to accommodate space to facilitate more private conversations. From my perspective, she does have a point. But there are TELUS stores like the one at the Eaton Center in Toronto which are much larger in size versus the one at Sherway Gardens. So I would simply attribute this to the Sherway Gardens location rather than being something that TELUS needs to work on as a whole.

By the time we left, she was able to dial out from her iPhone. And about an hour after we left the store, her phone number was ported from Rogers. After that, a quick phone call to Anna to set up her account with the plan that they discussed and it was job done. Overall, my wife felt it was a very positive experience.

My wife’s good feelings continued when she went to work on the following Monday. With Rogers my wife’s workplace was a cellular dead zone. As in she got one bar to zero bars with Rogers which often left her unable to get and receive calls, or calls would drop. That often required her to leave her office and find a location with a better cellular signal, or use a landline instead. In an attempt to remedy that Rogers she had to enable their WiFi calling service which turned out to be difficult initially before we ultimately had success. That was fine until her workplace said that WiFi calling wasn’t allowed on their WiFi network which put her back to square one. Now that she’s on Telus, that’s changed. Here’s a text message exchange that I had with her on this topic:

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To my wife, this is almost life changing as for the first time in years my wife make and receive calls at work without an issue. My wife has also noticed that in other locations where reception with Rogers was poor to non-existent, she can now get three to for bars on Telus. Not only that, she noted that the speed of her LTE connection is much faster than what she is used to. That further confirms the findings of PC Magazine and OpenSignal who rank TELUS as the fastest LTE network in Canada. And for the record, the Anna that is referenced in this exchange is the same Anna who facilitated her coming across to TELUS. And she deserves some kudos from someone further up the food chain in TELUS as she did a great job in getting her on board.

Another thing that my Wife noted was that the myTELUS app is way better than what Rogers offers up from their app (though to be fair to Rogers, they say in their app that improvements are coming). According to her, it is designed to give you the information that you need without having to excessively dig for it. She thinks that TELUS has a better understanding in terms of what customers want and how to present it in a manner that is easy to understand. It’s also very visually appealing.

There’s one final part to this story. Both my wife and I have been getting calls from Rogers retentions group. Now I’ve ignored these calls, but in the case of my wife she spoke to them once to essentially blow them off and didn’t even allow them to present her with whatever offers that they had. But being a betting man, I would suspect it is something along the lines of this offer which iPhoneInCanada.ca discovered. Needless to say, a return to Rogers when it comes to our cell phone service isn’t happening.

Here’s the bottom line according to my wife. She doesn’t like change and that’s why she stuck with Rogers for as long as she did. However, TELUS made it so easy for her to make the switch that she was blown away by the experience and now believes that she should have made this switch long before now. Plus the fact that she hasn’t had to fix anything after her move to TELUS is impressive as any change she or I did with Rogers usually resulted in a couple of calls to Rogers to fix something after the fact. This saved her time and effort and resulted in an extremely positive customer experience with TELUS. Her only suggestion was that if TELUS were to get aggressive with their pricing, say chop off five dollars from their in market plans when it comes to data as well as five dollars off when it comes to voice, they could really take large amounts of business away from Rogers and Bell as they have the customer service end of things nailed along with the quality of their LTE network. But even without doing that, TELUS is a company she’d recommend without hesitation. Clearly, TELUS has something going on here that makes them more than worthy of consideration when you need cell phone service. In fact, I think that my wife and I would both say that they should be your only choice.