July/August 2017 Newsletter
In this July/August 2017 newsletter we cover current SPAM threats, how to request support from DNS Texas, backing up data and useful end-of-life dates for Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office products.
Current SPAM Threats
As summer presses on, we continue to see elevated threats via e-mail… This will only continue to rise as we approach the holidays. The most popular SPAM we are currently seeing:
- .PDF files disguised as unpaid invoices or urgent files you need to look at. Be very cautious of these type attachments. If you are not expecting an e-mail from the sender or have never heard of them before, forward a copy to nospam and delete the message from your inbox.
- .ZIP files containing malware/cryptolocker laced files. Unless you are specifically expecting a .zip attachment from a specific sender, consider them all bad these days! Forward a copy to nospam and delete from your inbox.
- Malicious links. We’ve seen a small uptick in malicious emails that are forges of popular websites (primarily banking websites). Although these have been around for a long time, we need to keep reminding you – never access your bank from a link in an e-mail, never give out your banking information or pin numbers to anyone! Your banking institutions will never ask for this information via e-mail!
DNS Texas customers can forward a copy of unwanted/suspicious or SPAM emails to [email protected] for review and blocking. Once you forward a copy of the suspect message to nospam, you can safely delete it from your inbox.
If you need help with a technical issue, please open a support ticket or e-mail the helpdesk. This will generate a ticket number and notify the appropriate group who can help you resolve your problem(s)! Support tickets can be opened by either of these methods:
- Visit the https://www.dnstexas.com website and under the ‘Support‘ header, choose ‘Request Assistance (Open A Ticket)‘. Answer a few quick questions related to your support needs and hit ‘submit‘. Direct link : https://clients.dnstexas.com/submitticket.php
- Send an email to [email protected], place the topic of the issue in the subject field of your new message along with a summary of the issue(s) you are experiencing in the message body and hit ‘send‘. A ticket will be auto generated for you within a few minutes.
If you need to speak to someone right away, you’re always welcome to call the helpdesk. See the contact us page for phone numbers and hours of operation at : https://www.dnstexas.com/contact-us
Your Backup Strategy…
The data on your home computer can not easily be replaced in many cases, tons of photos, music and documents. The data on your work computer(s) or server farms would be catastrophic to lose, but all too many times backup solutions are forgotten about until it’s too late. What can cause data loss? Fire, flood, theft, tornado, viruses, cryptolockers and hardware failures (crashes) are the most common culprits. There are a variety of ways to safeguard your data. DNS Texas offers an offsite backup solution that is a one-time set it and forget it type system. To learn more about this service visit https://www.dnstexas.com/products/offsite-backup-solutions. Even in you don’t choose to use this service, be sure and backup your critical data somehow to avoid loss! This service is available for home and business users.
Did You Know?
Microsoft Windows 7 is now considered end of life. Microsoft Windows 7 exited mainstream support on January 12, 2015. Although Microsoft will continue to release critical security updates for this product until January 2020. Note: only critical updates are available for Windows 7, you should consider or start budgeting the move to Windows 10 as many protection suites are beginning to announce end of support for Windows 7 machines. If you must stay on Windows 7 until you absolutely have to upgrade, that’s fine! Just protect yourself with MalwareBytes or equivalent product. You can read more about this on our product page at https://www.dnstexas.com/products/malwarebytes
Microsoft Windows 8 is coming up on end of life. Microsoft Windows 8 mainstream support ends on January 9, 2018. Microsoft will continue to release critical security updates for this product until January 2023. Note: only critical updates will be available after mainstream support. You should consider or start budgeting the move to Windows 10. If you are on Windows 8, the migration to Windows 10 is not too bad. They have a similar look! Windows defender continues to be supported by Microsoft for the time being and provides OK basic protection from threats. You can enhance protection against ransomware, etc. with MalwareBytes or equivalent product. You can read more about this on our product page at https://www.dnstexas.com/products/malwarebytes
Microsoft Office 2003 is totally end of life and is no longer supported. Office 2003 Outlook cannot connect to DNS Texas hosted e-mail services and can no longer be supported by DNS Texas. It should be upgraded immediately,
Microsoft Office 2007 has exited mainstream support and patches expired on April 11, 2017. Although this product does connect to DNS Texas hosted e-mail, it will not support future system upgrades and will stop working with hosted e-mail accounts. There is no date set for this yet but we expect it will be late 2018 or early 2019. Users on Office 2007 should consider upgrading to Office 2016 soon.
Microsoft Office 2010 has exited mainstream support. Patches will be available until October 13, 2020. This product is still fully supported by DNS Texas services at this time.
Microsoft Office 2013 exits mainstream support April 10, 2018. Patches will be available until April 11, 2023. This product is still fully supported by DNS Texas services at this time.
Microsoft Office 2016 is the current mainstream version.