Category Archives: What’s Hot

General Networks Named a Top Business Services Company by Clutch for 2019!

General Networks is proud to announce that we have been named as one of the top providers of business services in the world by Clutch! We are also excited to say that we have been doing well in a few of Clutch’s more competitive categories, their rankings of the best Microsoft Office 365 consultants, Microsoft SharePoint consultants, and OpenText ECM consultants.

We deliver technology consulting services for customers who need to manage and process critical business content. We bring together business strategy, specialized application expertise, and creative and technology professionals to solve business problems. We help our clients create effective solutions for automating any document intensive business process, from simple electronic libraries to complex document assembly and workflow. Our depth of experience reduces the time and risk of implementing IT solutions.

Clutch takes its reviews seriously, conducting phone interviews with a company’s past clients and getting honest feedback on the quality of their work. These reviews can all be found on our Clutch reviews page, but we wanted to include some of the nice things our clients have said about us here.

“I appreciate their ability to summarize information and suggest actionable solutions.” – IT Director, Research Center

“They are very professional, knowledgeable, and friendly and easy to work with. We’re very happy that we found them.” – Administrator, CF Kent

“General Networks’ responsiveness and accessibility sets them apart; we’ve had a harder time getting prompt support from other providers.” – Vice President, Real Estate Firm

We were also ranked as one of the best ECM consultants by Clutch’s sister site, The Manifest. We were featured for an email migration we performed for a large scale research group in California.

We are honored to receive this recognition. We do everything we can to help our clients succeed, and knowing that they appreciate our work so much is incredible. We will continue to improve and innovate, always keeping our clients ahead of the curve.

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[Policy Template] Should Failing Phishing Tests Be a Fireable Offense?

Thanks to KnowBe4 for this great policy tip!

Firing employees for failing phishing tests can be extremely counterproductive and can damage an organization’s overall security posture. That, at any rate, is what two security experts told Brian Krebs recently, and we agree with them.

Companies sometimes think punitive policies will make employees take phishing more seriously, but these policies actually discourage cooperation and openness. It is much more productive to reward desired behavior.

John LaCour, founder and CTO of PhishLabs, told Krebs that punishment isn’t an effective response to failed phishing tests because it makes employees feel they’ve been manipulated.

“It really demotivates people, and it doesn’t really teach them anything about how to be more diligent about phishing attacks,” LaCour said. “Each phishing simulation program needs to be accompanied by a robust training program, where you teach employees what to do when they see something phishy. Otherwise, it just creates resentment among employees.”

Punishing Employees Has Negative Security Repercussions

In addition to creating an unhealthy work environment, punishing employees for failing phishing tests will have negative repercussions for your organization’s security. When an employee does fall for a phishing email, whether real or simulated, the most important thing they can do is report the incident so that the attack can be mitigated. Rohyt Belani, CEO of Cofense, said that organizations should have training programs that encourage employees to report failed phishing tests.

“So what happens a lot of times is a person may click on link in a real phishing email, and three seconds later realize, ‘Oops, I shouldn’t have clicked, let me report it anyway’,” Belani told Krebs. “But if that person knew there was a punitive angle to doing so, they’re more likely not to report it and to say, ‘You know what, I didn’t do it. Where’s the proof I clicked on the link?’”

LaCour says that positive reinforcement and recognition is a key element in improving employees’ phishing resistance. He said that posting the scores for each department’s phishing tests can make employees take the tests seriously and improve cooperation. He added that small rewards and lighthearted penalties, like having the lowest-scoring department buy lunch for everyone, can also help by making it feel like a good-natured competition.

An organization’s employees are its most important assets, and they need to be treated fairly and with respect. However, employees that are chronically click- happy become an active liability for your network security. New-school security awareness training can build a culture of security within your organization by providing education programs that are effective and make your employees feel valued.

Part of that fair treatment is a published security policy—which hundreds of organizations use today—to create a clean, clear, level playing field with known consequences for repeated click behavior. Here is a “find/replace” Policy Template Doc that you can use for your own organization:
https://blog.knowbe4.com/policy-template-should-failing-phishing-tests-be-a-fireable-offense

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The Problem With Passwords

Microsoft is now saying passwords are not good security.

What is the problem?
1) People will write down passwords if they are too complex.
2) Hackers have great tools to get uninformed people to give up their passwords unintentionally.
3) Even the best passwords can be hacked.

What are the solutions?
1) Stop forcing passwords expirations and replace with a password manager (LastPass, Keeper Security, etc.).
2) Turn on Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) on all services.
3) Setup Single Sign-On (SSO)
4) Use bio recognition as a factor for MFA (Finger Print Reader, Facial Recognition, etc.)

Get the security add-on
Enterprise Mobility and Security (EMS). EMS can protect Office 365, G Suite and traditional on-premise Windows Server solutions (RDS and File Sharing). Bundled in you get not only the feature above but Mobile Device Management, Managed Antivirus, email and file encryption, and many other security solutions. You can do some truly amazing things with EMS like firewall corporate data from personal data on BYOD devices.

Get fingerprint readers for mobile devices. USB fingerprint readers are available for under $50. There are even Bluetooth fingerprint readers available that can protect not only computers but corporate data on mobile devices (phone and tablets) when used in conjunction with EMS.

Of course, General Networks Corporation (GNC) is here to help with engineers trained on deployment of multiple security tools and training options.

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Using Multiple Cloud Apps? Secure all your data with Cloud App Security

General Networks can help you secure multiple cloud apps with Microsoft Cloud App Security! 

Check out this video

Microsoft Cloud App Security is a Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB), powered by a unique approach to deliver state-of-the-art security for multi-cloud environments, via native integrations. It is designed with security professionals in mind – providing simplicity of deployment, centralized management, and innovative automation capabilities.

Contact us at tssales@gennet.com

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microsoft teams microsoft ignite 2018 recap

Microsoft Teams, PSTN Conferencing and Bypassing “The Lobby”

If you using Teams for PSTN Conferencing (Telephone Dial In), you have probably noticed that anyone that is not a member of your Office 365 tenant must be manually admitted from the Lobby by someone who is part of your company. Skype for Business meeting allow the meeting creator to turn this off for a specific meeting and to set the “bypass lobby” as a default feature. However this feature has not yet been added to the Teams client or the Outlook Desktop Client.

And worse yet if everyone is dialing in (member or not) the same issue applies. We have had customers reject PSTN Conferencing as usable because of this problem. However, there is a workaround finally. It requires using PowerShell and its all or nothing but we have bypassed the lobby here at General Networks so we can use Teams as our primary PSTN conferencing tool.

Below are the notes from our engineer that got this working.

If your not a General Networks client to do this for you email tssales@gennet.com and we will let you know the costs. Current clients can email or call the helpdesk.

I’ve updated our meeting policy so that when you scheduled a teams call, anonymous callers can dial in and will be joined to the meeting immediately (no lobby, no admin pin necessary). Here’s how to do it.

  1. Install the Skype for Business Online Connector Module. This module in PowerShell is used to update Meeting Policies in O365 https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=39366
  2. Restart your computer
  3. Open a PowerShell window in Administrator mode
  4. Run this command: Import-Module SkypeOnlineConnector
    1. If you have trouble running scripts due to your execution policy you’ll need to update your execution policy. See here for details: https:/go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=135170
    2. If it asks you to start WinRM service say Yes
  5. Execute this command: $credential = Get-Credential
    1. Type in credentials of a O365 Tenant Admin (may only need rights to Teams but not sure)
  6. Execute this command: $session = New-CsOnlineSession -Credential $credential -Verbose
  7. Execute this command: Import-PSSession $session
  8. You can now execute commands to interact with the Meeting Policies. Execute this command to see a list of your meeting policies: Get-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy
  9. Find the policy you want to update (i.e. Global)
  10. Execute this command using the policy name in place of GLOBAL: Set-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy -Identity GLOBAL -AllowAnonymousUsersToStartMeeting 1 -AllowPSTNUsersToBypassLobby 1 -AutoAdmittedUsers “Everyone”
    1. This will allow phone users to bypass the lobby as well as allow them (anonymous users) to start the meeting.
    2. Additional settings on this command can be found here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/powershell/module/skype/set-csteamsmeetingpolicy?view=skype-ps
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What’s New in SharePoint Communication Sites

What’s New in SharePoint Communication Sites – Branding, Layouts and Customizations

This past January, SharePoint Saturday-San Diego attendees were treated to a number of informative and inspiring presentations  and the exchange ideas with colleagues and Microsoft MVP’s.  Leading experts in the SharePoint Community were in attendance from Southern CA and throughout the US. With temperatures in the 70’s on a bright sunny Southern CA winter day, it was likely a treat for the folks that visited from the Midwest and East Coast as well!
Continue reading…

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RELEASE: Security Baseline (FINAL) for Windows 10 v1809 and Windows Server 2019

by kurtsh 

 

New security baseline for our OSs was released:
Microsoft is pleased to announce the final release of the security configuration baseline settings for Windows 10 October 2018 Update (a.k.a., version 1809, “Redstone 5” or “RS5”), and for Windows Server 2019.
For now, download the content here: Windows-10-1809-Security-Baseline-FINAL. It will be posted to the Security Compliance Toolkit download site very soon.

Read the entire blog announcement here:
• RELEASE: Security baseline (FINAL) for Windows 10 v1809 and Windows Server 2019
kurtsh | November 29, 2018 at 2:48 am | Categories: Uncategorized | URL: https://wp.me/p15CWC-517

This announcement should indicate that the “October” release of Windows 10 will released to manufacture (RTM) soon. New features include Autopilot, Kiosk Mode, many security features.  Here’s a list of features coming in Windows 10 Release 1809.

Read the entire blog announcement here:
     RELEASE: Security baseline (FINAL) for Windows 10 v1809 and Windows Server 2019

Microsoft Gold Partner

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microsoft ignite 2018 recap

Microsoft Ignite 2018 Recap – Teams, Communication Sites, PowerApps and Flow

Looking for a Microsoft Ignite 2018 recap?

At the end of September, I once again attended Microsoft Ignite in Orlando. If you’re not familiar with Ignite, it’s a week-long conference focused on Microsoft’s enterprise products – Windows, Azure, Exchange, SQL, Office, SharePoint, Office 365, and the Microsoft cloud.  As a long-time Office 365 and SharePoint systems integrator, I was especially interested in learning where Microsoft is taking SharePoint Communication Sites, Teams, and PowerApps and Flow in Office 365 and in understanding the roadmap for SharePoint Server 2019 (more to come on that in my next post). The Microsoft product teams did a great job providing insight into current and future capabilities of these Office 365 products – here are the highlights I brought back to our sales and implementation teams. Continue reading…

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Small Businesses Win Big with M-Files Back Office Vault

They say small businesses can’t afford enterprise-level document management software, we disagree!

Although most small business owners are convinced that they need some sort of proper filing for their growing content, they rarely make the decision to acquire one. The reasons vary and include tight budgets, no time to spare for implementation, doubting the ROI, and the lack of people resources to ensure the solutions are well maintained and users supported. Some will start using something like windows folder system, or light cloud-based solutions such as Box. And although Box provides a solid set of basic features for a low cost, small business owners tend to forget that they created their business to grow in the first place. The challenge they will soon face is with the explosion in their content size and the increasing complexity and reduced efficiency when trying to find content.

M-Files Back Office Vault addresses those challenges from Day 1. It is not only rich in features, inexpensive, secured, and can be cloud-based, it has so many other components that a small business, or any business in that matter, can and will require sometime in the future. By implementing M-Files Back Office Vault from the start, you avoid the inevitable–the complexity that accompanies moving content from your windows folder structure.  With M-Files Back Office Vault, you can connect to your content, located in Box, Google Docs, and even windows folders.

M-Files Back Office Vault is pre-designed to provide the following:

  • Accounting Records Management – manage and process invoices, receipts, PO’s, financial statements and tax documents to increase operational efficiencies and minimize risk
  • Human Resources Management – manage employee files (resumes, certifications, employee contracts) and data (contact information, vacation, performance) with built-in security for employee private data
  • Asset Management – Keep up with everything you own, who it’s assigned to, where it’s living, and any other information you need to run your business effectively
  • Contract Management – maximize visibility and control for contract management with notifications, assignments, audit history and version control to reduce inefficiencies and reduce risk
  • CRM Lite – a lite CRM to track sales campaigns, opportunities and contacts, designed to help your organization drive sales
  • Project Management – Find, search, and track project documentation and the status of documentation (draft approved, under review, etc.) to streamline the entire project management process

The most commonly used process automations i.e. workflows are provided for your consumption in the Back Office Vault, such as A/P Workflow, Purchase Order Workflow, Employee Absence Workflow, Contract Lifecycle Workflow, and many others.

The M-Files Back Office Vault comes equipped with the ability to electronically sign documents using the DocuSign integration function. The solution can be accessed from the free mobile app available from the various app stores. Last but not least, the solution enables users to collaborate on documents using features such as Co-Authoring, Annotations, and Review Comments.

Contact us today.  In a matter of 5 days, the General Networks’ team can deliver this solution for you.  We’ll help your small business win big!

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