SNX I.T. Provides Tips for Protecting Your Identify

identity theft prevention

According to the Federal Trade Commission, identity theft was the number one fraud complaint during calendar year 2008. Not unlike other organizations in the Information Technology industry today, SNX I.T. aims to inform its customers and prospects alike of the best ways to protect oneself from identity theft. The National Crime Prevention Council, United States Postal System, and the IRS help consumers prevent the threat of identity theft by posting helpful prevention tips and security measures that should be taken in order to avoid this hassle.

Facts about Identity Theft:

  • Limiting your use of your personal computer may not help much: a study released by Javelin Strategy and Research reported that in 2009 most identity thefts were taking place offline, not online…the opposite of what most people think.
  • The above study found that 43 percent of all identity thefts are committed by someone the victim knows.
  • All a thief needs is your Social Security number to commit identity theft.

Identity thieves commit their crime in several ways:

  • Stealing credit card payments and other outgoing mail from private, curbside mailboxes.
  • Digging through garbage cans or communal dumpsters in search of cancelled checks, credit card and bank statements, and preapproved credit card offers.
  • Hacking into computers that contain personal records and steal the data.
  • Filing a change of address form in the victim’s name to divert mail and gather personal and financial data.

Tips for Preventing Identity Theft:

  • Don’t give a business your SSN or ITIN just because they ask. Give it only when required.
  • Don’t carry your Social Security card or birth certificateleave them in a secure location. Also, never give out your Social Security number; treat it as confidential information.
  • Protect your financial information.
  • Check your credit report every 12 months.
  • Secure personal information in your home.
  • Protect your personal computers by using firewalls, antispam/virus software, update security patches and change passwords for Internet accounts.
  • Don’t give personal information over the phone, through the mail or on the Internet unless you have initiated the contact or you are sure you know who you are dealing with.
  • Report lost or stolen credit cards immediately.
  • Closely monitor the expiration dates on your credit cards and contact the issuer if you don’t receive a replacement prior to the expiration date.
  • Sign new credit cards immediately-before someone else does.
  • Memorize your Social Security number and passwords. Don’t use your date of birth as your password and don’t record passwords on papers you carry with you.
  • Never leave transaction receipts at ATM machines, on counters at financial institutions, or at gasoline pumps.
  • Commit all passwords to memory. Never write them down or carry them with you.
  • When using an ATM machine, make sure no one is hovering over you and can see you enter your password.
  • Tell your children never to give out their address telephone number password school name or any other personal information.
  • Make sure your children know to never agree to meet face-to-face with someone they’ve met online without discussing it with you. Only if you decide that it’s okay to meet their “cyber-friend” should they arrange to meet this person, and then the meeting should be in a familiar public place in the presence of a trusted adult.
  • Tell your children never to enter an area that charges for services without asking you first.
  • Tell your children never to send a picture of themselves to anyone without your permission.
  • Make sure that access to the Internet at your children’s school is monitored by adults.
  • Beware of mail or telephone solicitations that offer prizes or awards-especially if the person offering asks you for personal information or financial account numbers.
  • Match your credit card receipts against your monthly bills and check your monthly financial statements for accuracy.
  • Watch for your monthly financial statements and bills. If you don’t get them when expected, contact the sender.

If you believe you’re a victim of identity theft…

The Internal Revenue Service is taking additional steps during the 2013 tax season to protect taxpayers and help victims of identity theft and refund fraud. If you believe you’re a victim of identity theft, follow the steps below.

  • Be alert to possible identity theft if you receive a notice from the IRS or learn from your tax professional that:
    • More than one tax return for you was filed;
    • You have a balance due, refund offset or have had collection actions taken against you for a year you did not file a tax return;
    • IRS records indicate you received more wages than you actually earned or
    • Your state or federal benefits were reduced or cancelled because the agency received information reporting an income change.
  • If you receive a notice from IRS and you suspect your identity has been used fraudulently, respond immediately by calling the number on the notice.
  • If you did not receive a notice but believe you’ve been the victim of identity theft, contact the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 8009084490, extension 245 right away so we can take steps to secure your tax account and match your SSN or ITIN.
  • Fill out the IRS Identity Theft Affidavit, Form 14039.
  • Report incidents of identity theft to the Federal Trade Commission at www.consumer.ftc.gov or the FTC Identity Theft hotline at 8774384338 or TTY 8666534261.
  • File a report with the local police.
  • Contact the fraud departments of the three major credit bureaus:
    • Equifax – www.equifax.com, 8005256285
    • Experian – www.experian.com, 8883973742
    • TransUnion – www.transunion.com, 8006807289
  • Close any accounts that have been tampered with or opened fraudulently.

 

More information:

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Keep Your Personal Information And Data Safe With These 4 Quick Tricks

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At SNX I.T. and SNX Fix I.T., we work based on the belief that customers and prospects alike should be armed with as much information about the technological world as possible; all business is run from an educational standpoint. Our goal is to empower and educate customers, not take advantage of anyone’s lack of expertise.

These 4 quick IT tips below provide simple solutions to what could be time-consuming, painful events if not followed.

1)      Beware of “Shoulder Surfing”.

When entering personal information while filling out a form, or entering your PIN number in the check-out line, beware of anyone standing nearby. They may be doing more than just waiting their turn. To help prevent “shoulder surfing”, make an effort to shield your paperwork from view using your body, or cup your hand over the keypad when entering your PIN. Hackers and scam-artists use this method to steal personal information, identities, and money; always be aware of who is watching you enter your personal information.

2)      Make your password hard to hack.

When deciding on a password, one handy tip for making it hard to hack is by coming up with a sentence that’s easy for you to remember, then picking the first letter of each word and adding some special characters or numbers to the beginning and end. For example: “I want a new phone for Christmas” = IWANPFC. Then use a variation of upper case/lower case letters, add some special characters, and the result is = iW@nP4c!. This is a handy way to come up with easy to remember passwords that are hard to crack. The result is an account that is much harder to hack into by anyone attempting to break into your account.

3)      Use a separate email address for web postings.

At SNX we suggest that customers secure their data and reduce the amount of incoming spam by using a dedicated email address for web/social media posts. It is also best to never use a business email address for posting guest book entries, votes, or for Q&As in online forums and surveys. It’s great to be reachable in these situations, but best to be anonymous. Another benefit to following this suggestion is a personal email account with much less spam.

4)      Backup your computer.

Backing up your hard drive (click here to view a prior blog on computer optimization) is a relatively inexpensive way to avoid the total disaster of losing your data to a system crash. Backup drives cost around $75, backup software is around $30 or less, and an SNX I.T. technician can install it for you in less than an hour at an affordable price. Contact us today for help getting your information backed up and secure.

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Inspirational Quotes from Great Entrepreneurs

Jeremy Anderson, CEO/Founder of SNX I.T. and SNX Fix I.T., is not only an entrepreneur and business owner, but a leader as well. Being a great leader entails surrounding yourself with the words of other leaders and inspirational figures, both past and present. Below are some inspirational and relevant quotes from a few of our favorites: Michael Hyatt, Dave Ramsey, Ray Bradbury, and others.

Words of Wisdom from Michael Hyatt:

“You’re never as smart as you think you are when you are winning and never as dumb as you feel when you are losing.”

“Perfectionism is the mother of procrastination.”

“Good guys can finish first.”

“The most interesting things in life happen just on the other side of your comfort zone.”

“When you are leading, you have to take initiative.”

Dave Ramsey:

“If you will live like no one else, later you can live like no one else.”

“Pray like it all depends on God, but work like it all depends on you.”

“For your own good, for the good of your family and your future, grow a backbone. When something is wrong, stand up and say it is wrong, and don’t back down.”

“Fear is the enemy of hope.”

“Without a mission statement, you may get to the top of the ladder and then realize it was leaning against the wrong building!”

Others:

“Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate and doubt, to offer a solution everybody can understand.” –Colin Powell

“Very few of the great leaders ever get through their careers without failing, sometimes dramatically.” –Phil Crosby

“Enlightenment is not about knowing as much as it is about unknowing; it is not so much learning as unlearning. It is about surrendering and letting go rather than achieving and possessing. It’s more about entering the mystery than arriving at a mental certitude.” –Richard Rohr

“If we stop learning today, we stop teaching tomorrow.” –Howard Hendricks

“You cannot be anything you want to be—but you can be a lot more of who you already are.” –Tom Rath

“Quantity produces quality. If you only write a few things, you are doomed.” –Ray Bradbury

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SNX Fix I.T. is Just Around the Corner

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SNX I.T. is proud to announce that the lease has been signed and retail space acquired for subsidiary company SNX Fix I.T., “The Computer Store that Does More.” The new retail store will open in the upcoming months and will boast products such as Skooba Design laptop bags, Dell computers and parts, Microsoft Office programs, and also offers smart phone and computer repair. A prior blog on the store can be found here.

The following is an article on the new store written by , editor at the VirginiaHighlands-DruidHills Patch (Vahi):

High Tech Repair Shop To Open in VaHi

SNX FIX I.T. will move into half the space previously occupied by Armour & Co., near the post office on North Highland.

SNX FIX I.T. will move into half the space previously occupied by Armour & Co., near the post office on North Highland. SNX FIX I.T., a computer and smart phone repair shop, will move into half the space previously occupied by Armour & Co., a home furnishings store, on North Highland Avenue in Virginia Highland.
SNX FIX I.T., a computer and smart phone repair shop, will move into half the space previously occupied by Armour & Co., a home furnishings store, on North Highland Avenue in Virginia Highland.

A repair shop for computers and smart phones will open soon at 1198 N. Highland Ave., near the post office in Virginia Highland.

SNX FIX I.T. will move into half the space previously occupied by Armour & Co., a home furnishings and decor store that closed in March. The tenant for the other half of the space has not been revealed.

The company’s website says,

“The store will be a full-service computer repair shop, offering iPhone repair, computer repair (any type), virus scanning, memory boosting, and just about anything else that you can think of. There will also be new and refurbished computers and computer parts for sale as well.

As well as offering repair services, the SNX FIX I.T. store will be licensed to resale products from Microsoft and Skooba Designs, among others. When you come in to get your computer or phone repaired, you will have the option to purchase Microsoft applications such as PowerPoint, Office, Word or Excel, or pick yourself up a nifty new laptop bag designed by Skooba.”

The shop is the idea of Jeremy Anderson and Michael Petri, the CEO and COO, respectively, and founders of Southern NetworX.

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SNX I.T.: A Small Business Tackling Big Problems

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Below is a press release from SNX I.T., which just moved from Peachtree Street NW to North Highland Ave in Atlanta, GA and plans to open a retail branch within the next month:

SNX I.T.: A Small Business Tackling Big Problems

(Atlanta, GA – August 1, 2013) SNX I.T. is an Atlanta-based IT firm offering what many information technology companies have neglected: affordable networking solutions AND excellent customer service. Taking a service-oriented mantra one step forward, SNX I.T. was founded in 2008, and has been a go-to resource for companies looking to save money by outsourcing their IT staffing needs.

SNX I.T. CEO Jeremy Anderson created the company with the goal of making every customer equally important – knowing that each member of the SNX I.T. team is approachable and available, “Getting straight answers shouldn’t be something that requires pulling teeth,” says Anderson. “At SNX I.T., what I have tried to do is learn from all the different failed companies I’ve seen and build ours based on what they could have done differently. After nearly 20 years in the Information Technology industry, I decided to create a company based on morally sound principles – focusing on accelerating our customer’s business, and in turn, ours.”

For most people, computer literacy (beyond desktop publishing) is like speaking a foreign language. SNX I.T., however, speaks it well and offers services that are a truly reliable resource for small and medium-sized businesses. SNX I.T. does this by assisting companies to operate more efficiently and effectively. From IT strategy and consulting, hardware repair/ maintenance, and on-site staffing, SNX I.T. offers solutions for businesses of any size. Based on a predetermined hourly need, SNX I.T. will assign an expert IT professional for your project to provide regular routine services as would a regular employee. SNX I.T. clients benefit from this because instead of hiring an entire IT department – or paying someone annually – they instead pay for only the hours of service needed on a month-to-month basis.

SNX I.T. also offers network installation and integration, network security, and secure backup management, among others. A list of services can be found on their website at www.snxit.com.

SNX I.T. is uniquely geeky, but social. They have built a solid social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn as well as the introduction of the SNXProfessor, an online blog and learning resource. SNXProfessor.com is a platform for a myriad of topics relative (but not limited) to the IT industry. With blogs covering topics that range from the start of the company to the history behind the world’s first computer, the SNX Professor is built to arm prospects and clients alike with a myriad of useful technology tips and tricks. Let the SNX I.T. team of experts help make your business more efficient and affordable by doing what they do best, so you can do what you do best: run your business.

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