Why Hackers Set Their Sights on Small Businesses

Why Hackers Set Their Sights on Small Businesses
If you run a small business, and think that none of your data was of interest to a hacker, consider this: what if a hacker could take stolen bank account or credit card information from your computer and package it with the same information from a hundred or a thousand other small businesses? Would it be worth something then?

"SMBs don't know how defenseless they've become, especially to automated and industrialized attack methodologies by organized crime," Christopher Porter tells PCWorld. Porter, a principal with the Verizon RISK Team, is the author of a new report from Verizon on security risk.

"[Hackers] scan the Internet, looking for remote access services, and then try the default credentials. Once they gain access, they automatically install keyloggers to collect password information [as it's typed in]," Porter says. "Then they send the information it out via e-mail or by uploading it to an FTP server or a web site. They aggregate the data and sell it on the black market."

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Groupon Offers Free Scheduler for Small Businesses

Managing appointments, cancellations, and no-shows can be tough for a very small business to manage. Groupon is offering a free scheduling tool that you can easily add to your website. Groupon Scheduler has been running for a few months as a perk for merchants running a Groupon deal, and it's now available to any small business in the United States and Canada excluding Quebec.

Groupon Scheduler
Groupon's launch of a scheduling tool seems to be an effort to give itself a shot in the arm after its lackluster IPO performance, to step up its marketing to small businesses, and to make inroads with a free product in a space dominated by other low-cost or free tools. One of these, Schedulicity, even has a feature to prevent a certain number of daily deals promotions to be scheduled on the same day, a feature that Groupon would likely not want to incorporate or promote.

If you want to give Groupon's new tool a shot, walk through the steps on the Groupon Scheduler website. It allows entries for multiple services and staff members, making it ideal for service-based businesses such as spas, salons, and yoga studios.

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Three Ways Web Browsing Changes With IE10 in Windows 8

While Metro apps for both Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome have been recently announced, users are getting a chance to actually use the Metro app for IE10 in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Providing a full-screen browsing window and touch friendly controls, the desktop experience feels like using browsers on smartphones and tablets, even on a desktop or laptop, though less intuitive when using a mouse.

In the Building Windows 8 blog on Tuesday, Rob Mauceri, group program manager for Internet Explorer, explains the changes to IE10 and how the Metro interface is different. The new additions can be broken down into these three categories.

1. Metro Styling

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Three Reasons the iPad Will Lead the Tablet Pack for Business

The iPad seems unstoppable. Pre-orders for the new iPad sold out in less than a week. But it’s not just consumers that are interested; eighty-four percent of businesses prefer the iPad over its competitors, according to a survey by ChangeWave Research. With its current lead in the market, momentum could keep demand high for a number of reasons.

The survey, done in February 2012 before the release of the new iPad, and released Tuesday, found that one in five businesses was planning to buy a tablet in the second quarter of the year. Demand for the iPad increased 7 percent since the last survey from November, while all eight competing products in the survey saw a decrease.

In an informal PC World survey last week, 67 percent of respondents said they were likely to purchase an iPad, while only 34 percent had no such plans. Of those planning to buy the tablet, 8 percent were just as likely to buy either the new iPad or the iPad 2, but 48 percent wanted the new iPad--suggesting that demand could grow even higher.

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We Saw Where You Went: App Traces Workers' Steps Abroad

EY Tracer App tracks your location
Apparently the news that people don’t like having their whereabouts known, tracked, and compiled hasn’t reached all corners. Over the past year, Google and Apple have come under governmental scrutiny for collecting users' location information, and the topic was hot last weekend at the South By Southwest confab in Austin, Texas.

That didn’t stop tax and consulting firm Ernst & Young from announcing on Monday the release of EY Tracer, an app for iOS, Android and BlackBerry that "tracks current location, home location, and whether time spent abroad has been a work day, travel day, or vacation day," according to a news release. At the same time, the company insists that "no personal identifiable information is transmitted."

The app, which is similar to the firm’s existing Traveler Risk and Compliance (TRAC) application, is designed to ensure that businesses comply with corporate tax and immigration rules in more than 100 countries. If that’s true that it doesn’t track personal information, then how does it ensure that any one employee doesn’t overstay their time in a particular country?

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Firefox 11 Rollout Delayed by Patch Tuesday

Firefox 11 may have made an early debut on third-party download sites over the weekend, but there's been some uncertainty regarding the timing of the official release of the software.

Though March 13 has been the scheduled release date for the free and open source browser, Mozilla on Monday announced that the new version wouldn't be officially rolled out on Tuesday after all.

“This week we will release another update, but not on Tuesday as we typically do,” began Jonathan Nightingale, Mozilla's senior director of Firefox engineering, in a blog post on Monday.

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Firefox 11 Slips onto Stage Ahead of Schedule

The final release version of Firefox 11 isn't scheduled to make its official debut until Tuesday, but--as so often happens--it's shown up early.

Though some download links published in early reports appear to have been since taken down, there are still some third-party sites where a stable Firefox 11 can apparently be found, including Download Crew and Major Geeks.

At least one report suggests that one more update is still on the way before the browser's official release by Mozilla, however, so if you do check out an early version, you'd be wise to refresh it in a day or two.

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