3/12/2016

2016 Tax Season Email Scam

“A major phishing scheme has tricked several major companies - among them, the messaging service Snapchat and disk-drive maker Seagate Technology - into relinquishing tax documents that exposed their workers' incomes, addresses and Social Security numbers,” according to the Associated Press.

This latest scam sent emails to company payroll and personnel departments impersonating CEOs or other top officials, requesting employees’ W-2 tax forms. The data from these forms is primed for identity theft, including fake tax returns and fraudulent refunds.

This scam is so widespread that on March 1 the IRS sent a notice alerting employers' payroll departments. The IRS has seen a 400% increase in phishing and computer malware incidents this tax-filing season. Attacks like this are much more common during holidays and other annual events like tax season to take advantage of people's routines.

Seagate’s CFO, Dave Morton, admitted, "This mistake was caused by human error and lack of vigilance, and could have been prevented." This is a reminder that no amount of IT security can stop scammers from "social engineering," which we discussed in last year’s blog post about a wire transfer email scam. Social engineering is defined as the "psychological manipulation of people into performing actions or divulging confidential information."

This is a very helpful guide to recognizing "Social Engineering Red Flags" from KnowBe4.com (view the PDF).

https://www.baroan.com/images/stories/documents/SocialEngineeringRedFlags.pdf


The most effective phishing emails use company logos and colors to enter your inbox undetected. However, there is always something slightly off, as the graphic above explains. You may not notice details like that on first glance, but closer examination will reveal the scam for what it is.

How can you avoid the scam?
  • The AP article argues, "Payroll and personnel specialists should be trained well enough to question why a CEO needs to see individual worker W-2s in the first place." Stu Sjouwerman, CEO of KnowBe4, explains, "It's a case of: 'Oh, the boss wants it', They stop thinking, 'Why would this be?'"
  • Setup your email so any outside emails are tagged as "[EXTERNAL]" in the subject (This can be done by Baroan or your network admin.)
  • Study the Social Engineering Red Flags!

10/21/2015

Office 2016 0x80041015 Product Install System Error Message

We have been testing Windows 10 and Office 2016 since their release. This is one of the system error messages we've come across with Office Professional Plus 2016: "Sorry, we ran into a problem while trying to install the product key. If this keeps happening, you should try repairing your office product. (System error: 0x80041015)"


After uninstalling and re-installing, troubleshooting, and searching online for a solution, we spoke directly with Microsoft and received the following solution.
  1. Download and run this script to uninstall Office 2016.
  2. Reboot.
  3. Install Microsoft OneNote on its own using this link.
  4. After OneNote is installed, activate it.
  5. Install your Office Professional Plus 2016 software. (If you have Microsoft Office 365, go into the portal and download it from there.)
This should fix the system error. Microsoft is aware of this issue and are working to resolve it. For now this is the work around.

10/07/2015

See Baroan's New Ergonomic Office Makeover


VP Dimitri Miaoulis now spends
90% of his day standing
We've all read the articles and statistics - sitting is bad. According to CNN, sitting for 8-12+ hours a day increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 90%. According to NPR, exercising won't even offset the harm of sitting at your desk all day - "These are independent variables — excess sitting and the presence or absence of exercise." So Baroan Technologies decided it was time to stand up.

7/27/2015

Baroan Achieves Microsoft Silver Cloud Competencies

Baroan Technologies is proud to announce the renewal of our Microsoft Silver Competencies: Cloud Productivity, Midmarket Solution Provider, and Small and Midmarket Cloud Solutions. This places Baroan in the top 5% of all Microsoft partners worldwide.

Microsoft's Silver competencies represent consistent capability, expertise, and commitment. As "early adopters" of cloud solutions, Baroan Technologies has been providing
Office 365 since its inception. We have migrated over 100 businesses to this software.

How does Microsoft Silver Competencies benefit our clients?
“When customers look for an IT partner to meet their business challenges, choosing a company that has attained Microsoft competencies is a smart move. These are highly qualified professionals with access to Microsoft technical support and product teams,” said Phil Sorgen, VP or Microsoft's Worldwide Partner Group. Our clients benefit from our strong relationship with Microsoft and all that this vendor makes available to us due to our status.

Interested in cloud solutions? Give us a call at 201-796-0404 or sign up for a free Office 365 trial.

7/24/2015

Why You Spend More Shopping for Less: Buying Tech Online


We all know that we can get great pricing on our own if we shop online long enough. What we all don't know is that many times this turns out to actually cost us more. Why is it not worth it to chase down that best deal?

7/20/2015

Baroan Technologies Becomes Microsoft CIE Qualified Partner

Always been curious about the cloud, but never had the chance to test drive it? Interested in Office 365, but not sure how it would fit into your employees' processes? The Baroan Customer Immersion Experience (CIE, formerly known as Microsoft Experience Center or MEC) is here.

6/02/2015

Protect your computers with UPS battery backup

Hurricane season began this Monday, which means possible power outages. Summer is almost here, which means lightning storms and power surges. Be prepared…