Keeping Your Wifi Network Secure

How to Reduce Your Commercial Property Insurance Costs
Owning and operating a commercial property involves myriad expenses. If you’re like most property owners, you strive to keep these costs to a minimum. Some are more challenging to shave than others. Fortunately, when it comes to your insurance, you can take several steps to reduce your premium and boost your bottom line.

Determine your deductible: If you can safely manage a higher deductible, you can lower your premium. Work with your insurance provider to determine what deductible amount makes sense for your needs. Set this figure as high as possible to keep your premium low.

Decrease tenant coverage: Are you insuring your tenant’s possessions? You don’t have to. To reduce your premium, exclude tenants from your policy and require them to obtain their own coverage for their belongings.

Ditch the land: Find out if your policy covers your building only or both the land and the structure. Since you typically won’t need to insure the land, you may be able to cut costs by altering your policy so it covers only the building.

Dig for discounts: Have you looked into all the discounts that might be available to you? Continuous coverage and multiple policies with your carrier often come with discounts. Additionally, if your property has protective features, such as a sprinkler system, a security system, or updated utilities, you may be eligible for discounts.

Consult with your insurance agent to determine whether there are other ways you can reduce your costs. An annual review of your policy is good practice to ensure your coverage meets your current needs.

Keeping Your Business Wi-Fi Network Secure

Wireless networks are notoriously insecure, and many small businesses inadvertently leave their Wi-Fi systems vulnerable to cyberattack. Often, these entrepreneurs don’t realize just how easily hackers can access data that is transmitted wirelessly.

Fortunately, business owners can take some simple precautions to strengthen the security of their wireless networks. These extra efforts are well worth the added security they provide.

Defaults: Always change the default credentials on devices such as Wi-Fi routers, switches, ports, and access points. These default credentials enable users to log in initially and configure their network, but it’s important to customize these once you set up your network.

Ports: A hacker or internal intruder can easily access sensitive business data by plugging in to an Ethernet port. To prevent this, make sure that all network peripherals are safely stored in a locked cabinet or closet.

Firewalls: Ensure that firewalls are running on all your computers and other network devices.

Guests: If you have enabled a guest Wi-Fi, make sure it is isolated from the rest of your network. If your servers are linked to your Wi-Fi, an intruder logged on to your Wi-Fi can easily hack your data.

Monitoring: Regularly monitor network peripherals such as routers and other network components for suspicious activity.

Updates: Keep all hardware and network firmware updated.

Tiers: High-level encryption standards and an extended authorization protocol can add further layers of security.

Securing your Wi-Fi network is essential business hygiene. Whether you’re a solopreneur or a small-business owner, these simple steps can keep your confidential information from being exploited.

Five Quick Steps to Save a Laptop from a Spill

One second, you’re working. The next, you’re fighting panic over the deluge that just hit your keyboard. A single tumbled cup can bring disaster to your day. How can you recover? If liquid gets into your laptop, take the following steps.

Immediately turn the device off by holding the power button down for five seconds. Then disconnect the power cord and remove the battery to prevent it from shorting out.

Now that you’re safe from shock, unplug the mouse, cables, flash drives, et cetera. Open and remove anything that can be easily disengaged, such as the RAM and the hard drive or SSD.

Next, blot the spilled liquid with a soft, lint-free cloth. Apply light pressure. Do not rub, scrub, or wipe, as that will just distribute the liquid.

Then open the laptop as wide as possible, turn it upside down, and gently tilt it from side to side and from front to back, allowing the liquid to escape from all sides. Do not shake the laptop.

Once the excess liquid is gone, use a can of compressed air or a hair dryer at the coolest setting to remove any remaining moisture. Be sure to keep the blow dryer or compressed air moving.

Leave the device upside down for a few hours, and use this time to blot up any liquid that may have seeped into the keyboard or other accessories. If the liquid was something sticky, such as soda, send the laptop to a professional for a thorough cleaning. If the spill was water, once the laptop has dried thoroughly, you should be able to reattach the peripherals and start it up.

Workplace Injuries: First Five Steps
An accident occurs at your place of business. Your employee is injured. What should you do first?

Your choice of response can take the situation in entirely different directions. Simple slips and falls can result in clear-cut claims or costly lawsuits. With the proper plan in place, you can achieve the former and avoid the latter.

If one of your employees suffers an injury, take the following initial steps to move the situation in the right direction.

1. Prepare: This step should already be completed before any injury occurs. It’s essential to have a plan in place for workplace injuries.

Your plan should be a written document that is posted for all employees to follow. Provide training to ensure everyone knows what protocols to follow in the case of an accident.

2. Examine: Assess the injury immediately. What type of injury is it? How serious is it? If you have any staff members trained in first aid, involve them in this initial examination.

For severe injuries, enlist the help of emergency medical professionals. For non-emergencies, speak with your employee about what medical care he or she may need in the immediate future, and decide on next steps.

3. Document: The incident should be well-documented. Remember that workplace injury plan you developed? You should have the proper forms readily available, and complete them right away.

Submit these to the appropriate parties, such as your insurance provider. Ensure proper forms are also provided for the employee’s doctor. The physician may need return-to-work authorization forms or temporary work restriction forms. This makes the process go more smoothly and keeps you, the employee, the insurance carrier, and the doctor on the same page.

4. Treat: Make sure your employee gets the medical attention he or she needs. An immediate visit to a clinic or an occupational health doctor will help establish the nature and extent of the injuries.

A delay can result in unnecessary complications, both physically and financially. Because of this, it can be helpful to establish an ongoing relationship with a specific medical facility or physician to handle any and all workplace injuries at your business.

The medical provider can have all your standard forms on file and remain familiar with your incident protocols. This relationship can help streamline the process for both you and the injured employee.

5. Follow up: Let the employee know you care about his or her welfare. Follow up to find out how the doctor visit went. Ask how your employee is feeling. Remove your boss hat for a moment and simply offer person-to-person concern.

Then, replace that employer cap and work with your employee to develop a return-to-work plan. Find out what else, if anything, the person needs from you to facilitate a full recovery.

Workplace injuries are never welcome, but following these crucial steps can make them less disastrous and keep the experience as positive as possible for all parties involved.

Your insurance agent can provide additional assistance with this process. With in-depth knowledge of workers’ compensation claims, your agent is an invaluable resource you should not hesitate to tap in these situations.