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Alerts

Upcoming Eclipse May Cause On-Site Delays

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock the last year or so, you’re probably well aware that a total eclipse is hitting the US on August 21, 2017. Weston’s main office is in Bend, Oregon, which is very close to the path of totality. Central Oregon is expected to get a massive influx of visitors, possibly hundreds of thousands of folks or more (depending on which news story you read).

Weston’s offices will be open normal office hours throughout August. However, if your company is in Central Oregon and we need to make an on-site visit to your offices, there will likely be a delay on the days leading up to, during, and after the eclipse (August 17 through August 23) because of congestion on the roads. If it’s a regularly scheduled appointment, we may need to reschedule because of traffic delays (we will contact you to reschedule). Traffic is already starting to get busy within the city limits of Bend, likely to only get worse as we approach August 21.

If you have any questions or concerns, or if you already know that your office is going to be closed during the eclipse, please contact us at or giving us a call at (541) 383-2340.

Happy Independence Day from Weston

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Weston's offices will be closed on Tuesday, July 4th, 2017, for the Independence Day holiday. 

Emergency support is available for our CompleteCare and WestonEssentials clients by calling your local Weston office and following the telephone prompts to contact the after-hours consultant (emergency/holiday rates may apply):

  • Bend: (541) 383-2340
  • Anchorage: (907) 375-8324
  • Spokane: (509) 228-7718

Weston wishes all of you a safe, enjoyable, and memorable Fourth of July holiday.

Office 2007 Support Ends Soon

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Office 2007If you use Office 2007, you’ll want to upgrade your Office suite as Microsoft is ending support for the suite in October. What that means is that no security updates or patches will be released for the suite after that date.

If you’re using Outlook 2007 and Office 365 for email and calendars, you’ll have to upgrade your Office Suite because Office 365 will no longer support versions of Outlook older than Outlook 2010 – meaning you won’t be able to check your email unless you log into the Office365 Web Portal.

Because of the security risks involved with running out-of-support software – malware infections being the most obvious – we recommend running supported applications whenever possible (especially apps that are a frequent target of malware writers).

If you rely on Microsoft Office 2007 in your business, talk to us today about migrating your company to Office 365.

Petya Ransomware Outbreak

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You may have heard about the Petya Ransomware attack that is currently affecting computer users worldwide, hitting at least 65 counties, according to NPR. You can read more about the Petya outbreak at HealthITSecurity, the patched security flaw that is being exploited, the government's CERT alert and the most tragic news: a Cadbury chocolate factory was shut down because of it.

As a Weston CompleteCare client, you have multiple layers of protection in-place to help prevent these types of things from bringing down your environment. These may include:

  • WestonBlock email protection helps prevent viruses, malware, and phishing attempts from reaching your inbox. 
  • Managed Antivirus that is constantly being updated to protect opening these types of files and blocking them if they try to attack.
  • OpenDNS content filtering protects you from accidentally loading an infected web site and prevents these types of files from "phoning home" to activate.
  • WestonShield firewalls help protect against malicious inbound and outbound traffic (and has had protection for variants of Petya starting over a year ago).
  • Managed patching services that make sure security patches to help protect you from these types of infections are installed properly and quickly.
  • A solid backup and business continuity device and plan in-place that protects your local and offsite backed up data and that alerts when backups show sign of malware. 

All that being said, this is yet another reminder to be extremely vigilant about what links you click on and what emails you open. Even if you get an email and attachment from someone that you know, if you were not expecting it, contact that person and make sure it was sent by them. Also avoid browsing to sites you don't recognize or follow links that are unfamiliar.

If you have any questions or are interested in hearing about how CompleteCare can help protect your business, don't hesitate to contact us.

WannaCry Ransomware Outbreak

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You may have heard about the WannaCry ransomware attack that affected computer users worldwide (see this BBC story for the full details along with some technical details at Bleeping Computer). If Weston patches your Windows systems as part of our CompleteCare or other managed patching services, we applied a Microsoft patch to your covered machines back in mid-March that will help protect your computer from this particular ransomware (we also forced the install of the patch recently for machines that hadn’t been online for a while). However, this is yet another reminder to be extremely vigilant about what links you click on and what emails you open. Backups and business continuity planning are also critical if you are infected (read our recent whitepaper for more information on the Business Guide to Ransomware).

Even if you get an email and attachment from someone that you know, if you were not expecting it, contact that person and make sure it was sent by them. Many of these attacks utilize software that will attempt to impersonate an email user and send an email to everyone in their contact list.

If you are a HIPAA-regulated environment (or even if you're not), we recommend reading our blog article on ransomware and HIPAA and the various ways you can help protect yourself

Backups are still the best way to protect yourself. If you do manage to get encrypted with early variants of WannaCry, don’t reboot your computer as the recently-released Wannakey tool might be able to get the encryption keys. The early versions of the malware were poorly written and had a kill switch that slowed things down from becoming a lot worse than it was (new variants have since fixed those flaws).

It's a brave new world out there, stay vigilant.

-- Your Weston Support Team