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Using Technology Advancements To Increase Customer Engagement

Customers are the most important asset of a business. It is important for businesses to successfully engage their customers in order to survive in this highly competitive environment. One way to do this is by using technology.

Technology has influenced the business sector positively & empowered businesses to serve their customers in a better way. Following are some ways in which technological advancements can be used to increase customer engagement.

  • Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality: VR and AR technology is being used to engage customers innovatively. It improves the customer experience & allows them to perform tasks virtually which may be a little difficult or inconvenient to be performed physically. For example, Room Planner: Design for IKEA, is an app that allows users to browse through their products & preview how the furniture would look in their home by visualizing it from different points using their smartphone’s camera.
  • Location-Based Computing: Smartphones these days are location enabled devices that allow businesses to provide personalized services thus increasing customer engagement. For example, businesses can reach out more customers at a geo-location & target their needs. Cinemas, theaters, florists, salons, etc. target their customers in the vicinity & provide them last minute tickets & discounts using location based computing.
  • 3D Printing: By transforming the way businesses manufacture & distribute goods, the 3D printing technology has significantly affected customer engagement. Using this technology, a virtual design can be instantly transformed into a physical object. Also, any flaws in the manufacturing process can be identified early & fixed to save money and enhance customer experience. 3D printing also enables the customers to modify the shape, color, pattern, material, etc. to get a customized product. Since, they can choose what they need, it results in better customer engagement.
  • Chatbots: Chatbots have become quite popular these days. They offer 24/7 customer support and are faster as well as more efficient. These artificially intelligent assistants have self-learning capabilities and can proficiently engage the customers. Emobots have improved abilities & have entered the business scenario now as they can judge real-time emotional reactions of a customer & provide suitable services accordingly.
  • Artificial Intelligence: AI helps businesses in understanding customer needs & preferences better. For example, businesses can personalize a customer’s shopping experience in real time to increase engagement. Intelligent algorithms enable the websites and apps to target individuals and recommend them products based on their search history.
  • Internet of Things (IoT): Most devices these days are internet-enabled which provide numerous opportunities to increase customer engagement. IoT generates humongous amount of data which can be used by businesses to gain insight about customer behavior for a personalized user experience. For example, this technology enables creation of predictive models that use condition-based monitoring to prevent failures before they occur. Businesses can use this information and provide timely maintenance before the device breakdowns completely.

For more information, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 - 9654.

What Is Distributed Cybercrime?

Distributed cybercrime is a type of attack that is launched on a large scale with an aim to target many victims though the same campaign. Recent attacks like WannaCry, BadRabbit, NotPetya and other cybercrimes have created a havoc, thus highlighting the alarming increase of distributed cybercrimes.

Launching a massive ransomware attack on masses is the most preferred choice of cyber attackers. Such attacks are on rise and as per a prediction by Cyber Security Venture, a new organization will fall victim to ransomware every 14 seconds in 2019 and every 11 seconds by 2021. The number is soaring high and is growing at a fast pace.

What Makes Distributed Cybercrime A Preferred Choice To Cyber-criminals?

A cyber-criminal is not required to possess specialized knowledge of cybersecurity or cryptography to launch an attack. They use sample exploit codes and tools that are available on the dark web.

This way hackers develop malware and malicious software that run on professional platforms. The attack is not targeted to a specific set of people and usually cyber criminals don’t know their victims personally. They are simply interested in the ransomware amount. Their primary victims are individuals and organizations with sub-par security.

Following are some reasons why distributed cyber-attack is a lucrative option for cyber-criminals:

  • Since the distributed ransomware attack is aimed to target masses, it requires less effort.
  • Highly specialized skill & knowledge is not required to launch a distributed cybercrime.
  • There are endless possibilities of earning revenue as every standard endpoint is a potential source of revenue.

Hackers often send an email or website link, which when clicked by the victim installs a malware on their device. Ransomware attacks have affected almost every sector like healthcare, finance, transportation, etc. 

How To Protect Against Distributed Cybercrime?

  • Make sure that your organization meets the baseline security standards.
  • Follow a threat-centric vulnerability management (TCVM) approach.
  • Install an anti-virus software.
  • Update and patch your devices regularly.

How Does Threat Centric Vulnerability Management Work?

Cyber-crimes have been commercialized and so following this approach can significantly help in minimizing the risk of a distributed cybercrime.

  • The first step is assessment and discovery of vulnerabilities within an organization’s system.
  • Next step is threat intelligence research to consolidate and understand which exploits are active, available or packaged in the crimeware.
  • Then analyze the vulnerabilities and flag the ones that are exposed in the network or actively exploited.
  • Implement patches or other remedial factors such as IPS signatures, segmentation, etc. to avoid exploitation.
  • Check if something has been done to neutralize the effect of threat or reduce the overall risk. Vulnerabilities which have not been mitigated should be closely monitored.

For more information, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 - 9654.

What Is Cyberbullying?

With the increasing use of technology, there has been a rise in problems such as cyberbullying. Cyberbullying also known as cyber-harassment & online bullying, is the display of inappropriate behavior or influence in written, verbal or physical form with an intent to intimidate, threaten, harass & embarrass someone over internet.

Cyberbullying is usually common between teens, however adults are equally vulnerable to it. Following are the most common forms of cyberbullying:

  • Outing: It is a deliberate act to embarrass or harass someone publically by posting his confidential & private information online without his consent. Revelation of personal information by someone can have a major impact on the victim. 
  • Fraping: In this form of cyberbullying, your social media account is hacked by someone. They log into your account and post inappropriate content by impersonating you. Posing as someone and posting unsuitable content online can have a serious impact as it ruins the reputation of the victim. 
  • Dissing: It is the act of posting or sending information about a person with an intent to criticize him, damage his reputation, hamper his relationships, etc. It can be done by posting personal pictures & videos or sharing certain screenshots to put the other person down. Dissing is usually done by a victim’s friend or acquaintance. 
  • Trolling: It is a deliberate act of insulting someone on social media & other online platforms. A troll usually posts unwanted comments & material to incite the victim for a response. Trolling attacks are usually personal and are carried to instigate anger among the victims in order to make them lash out & behave improperly.
  • Trickery: Cyberbully often pretends to be the victim’s confidant by giving him a false sense of security. They gain the victim’s trust to an extent that the victim reveals his secrets & private information to them. They trick the victim and gather sensitive information about them which is then posted on social platforms to embarrass him publically or is either sent to a third party.
  • Cyberstalking: It can have serious effect on a person’s emotional, mental & physical well-being. Stalkers make use of the internet or electronic media to gather information for the purpose of harassing an individual or group.
  • Catfishing: A catfish is a person who wants to hide his identity. They usually steal the victim’s information available online such as photos to create a fake profile. This could be used for deceptive purposes where the impersonator might post rude or hurtful comments, indulge in sexual and racist activities, chat with other people while posing as the victim, etc.

It is important to know about different forms of cyberbullying in order to avoid falling prey to them.

For more information, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 - 9654.

Using Cloud Technology In Education Sector

Education sector has seen a major shift as technology has taken the center stage. The introduction of online learning courses, modern software applications and cloud based educational applications has changed the way how education sector used to work traditionally.

Cloud Technology Benefits

Cloud technology has revolutionized the operations in education sector in the following ways:

  • Real-Time Instruction In Virtual Environment: Cloud technology has opened up a plethora of opportunities for students around the world. It offers numerous benefits by enabling face-to-face instructions in a virtual environment. This allows the students residing in different corners of the world to become a part of lectures delivered by teachers of well-known institutes.
  • Self-Paced Distance Learning Online: Educational institutes now offer distant learning courses to students from all across the globe. Since, these courses can be accessed at any time of the day, from any part of the world, they enable students to learn at their own pace.
  • Cost Effective: Cloud based solutions are cost effective as it does not require you to invest on costly infrastructure & equipment. The applications are compatible on mobile devices so the students are not required to own expensive computers or external storage devices. The software programs are either free of cost or require low-cost subscription because the cloud based applications run on internet browsers & the software as a service model (SaaS) makes it easy to use this technology at a lower cost.
  • Unlimited Storage: Cloud hosting has unlimited storage capacity to manage enormous learning material as well as assignments submitted by the students. Also, since one cloud account can be accessed by students on multiple devices, teachers can easily share course material & assignments with all the students simultaneously.
  • Data Security: Cloud storage is highly secure when it comes to data security. Any hardware failure at the end of a student or teacher does not result in loss of data. Also, the content is encrypted end-to-end for enhanced security.
  • More Flexibility: Cloud solutions provide more flexibility to teachers by enabling them to customize their online learning portals according to the need of students. It is also easily scalable to accommodate increasing student base.
  • No More Expensive Textbooks: Cloud based virtual education has outpaced the need of buying expensive textbooks. Digital content which is provided to the students is cheaper as compared to printed text. Thus, every student is able to access the same quality learning material which provides equal opportunity by leveling the field for all students.
  • Easy To Update: Since cloud based material is easy to update, students can have access to the latest learning material at all times.

For more information, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 - 9654.

Applications Of Virtual Reality

Virtual reality is emerging as a revolutionary technology. Albeit most people relate VR to gaming; in reality it is being used in numerous other domains these days. As the applications of VR are increasing, it is bound to create a huge impact in the near future.

Following are some uses of virtual reality:

  • Military: VR is used by military forces all across the globe to train soldiers in varied activities like parachute jumps etc. The technology is also used to help them learn to cope up with dangerous & complex environments. VR makes it feasible to simulate the environment and perform without the risk of injury or death. 
  • Healthcare: VR is widely being used in healthcare sector for skill training & performing robotic surgeries. Virtual Reality applications enable doctors from across the globe to interact with each other within a virtually interactive environment. VR can also be used for diagnostics to diagnose a condition in conjunction with other methods. 
  • Entertainment: VR has made its way to the entertainment industry and is widely being used in virtual museums, discovery centers, virtual theme parks, galleries, theater, interactive performance studios, etc. People wear special glasses which enable them to see 3D objects from different angles. Virtual reality is also an important part of gaming as it adds 3D effects & improves the gaming experience.
  • Real Estate: VR technology has also paved its way to real estate sector. It has enabled real estate agents to offer virtual tour of properties to the potential buyers for added convenience of viewing the properties without actually travelling. 
  • Business: The business community can use virtual reality to train employees, design the product, offer 360 degree view of the product, etc. It helps in saving costs as well as time. 
  • Education: Another field which has adopted virtual reality is education. It has enabled the students residing in different parts of the world to interact with each other in a three dimensional environment. Also, it helps in presenting complex data in a simple way which can be easily understood & learnt by the students.
  • Construction: Virtual Reality has revolutionized the construction industry. It can be used to view a structure in 3D and experience how it would look in the real world. This enables the engineers to test a number of factors such as structure & design of the building, time & cost involved, etc. Engineers can also use it for simulated construction to maximize efficiency.

For more information on Virtual Reality and its applications, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 - 9654.

How To Choose A Data Backup Service

A business generates huge chunks of data every day which is susceptible to cyber threat and risk of loss. Once lost, it can interrupt daily operations of the business or bring them to a standstill. So, it is extremely essential to back up the business data regularly in order to retrieve the lost data, if a need arises.

There are variety of factors that need to be considered while choosing the data backup service that best suits your business needs. Following are some factors that can help you make the right choice.

  • Scalability Capabilities: As your business grows, the amount of data produced by it also increases. So, make sure to choose a scalable data backup service with the capability to accommodate the growing needs of your business. It is important to consider this or you would have to buy a new backup option to fulfill your business needs, which will cost you both time & effort.
  • Cost Effectiveness: Cost is another important factor that needs to be considered as data backup providers charge a fee for rendering their services. The backup provider may choose a fixed rate or pay-as-you-go basis. However, make sure to ask about any hidden fees, charges that you might have to pay if you exceed the data limit, etc. Also inquire about their refund policy, just in case you change your mind.
  • Security & Privacy Of Data: Data security is a primary concern for a business, so it is important to ensure that you choose a data backup service provider that offers top-notch security. This is necessary to prevent information spillage. The service provider might offer security measures such as limited access to information, encryption capabilities, two-step verification, password usage, etc.
  • Reputation Of The Service Provider: Do check the reputation of the service providers before opting for their services. Conduct a thorough background research and check their work history, certifications, client testimonials, track record, etc.
  • Needs Of The Company: It is vital to assess the needs of your company and choose a data backup provider accordingly. You need to make various considerations such as the data type & size, level of support required, compliances with the laws, etc.
  • Terms Of Service: Different service providers have different terms and conditions, so it is important to inquire about them in advance. This will enable you to understand their policies on matters concerning data ownership, management, security & access.  

In the wake of rising cyber-crimes and stringent legal requirements, it is very important to choose a reliable as well as cost effective data backup service provider.

For more information, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 - 9654.

Ways Technology Can Help A Small Business

In order to thrive in the competitive environment, small businesses need to revolutionize the way they conduct themselves. It can be achieved by making the best use of technology. Let us discuss ways in which technology can help a small business:

  • Cloud-Based Services: Small businesses can simplify their operations by opting for online cloud-based services. This will help them in improving productivity while reducing administrative costs. They can also incorporate cloud-based applications in their sales and marketing processes to make them efficient.
  • Marketing: Businesses can formulate better marketing strategies as technology enables them to create user friendly portals, communicate with online clients using chatbots, track customer’s buying behavior, promote business on different platforms, reach out to customers through emails or messenger apps, have an effective customer support system, etc. which in turn generates more revenues.
  • Accounting: Technology enables businesses to use an online invoicing service. This helps in significantly reducing the cost of collecting payments from customers. Also, businesses can keep a track of their expenses using software and apps specifically designed for this purpose. Technology has also enabled business to pay their taxes online, streamline business finances, share financial information & records online, etc.
  • Mobile Working & Telecommuting: Devices like tablets, smartphones or laptops have enabled professionals to stay in contact with their customers, no matter where they go. This way they can interact with the customers and solve their queries as & when they arise.
  • RFID: It is a technology that enables businesses to capture the digital data encoded in RFID tags or smart labels using a reader via radio waves. The technology is used to track mass objects and helps in saving time & effort.
  • Communication: If communication costs form a large part of your monthly expenses, then resort to online communication methods like VOIP. Online communication solutions are highly functional and help in cutting communication costs.
  • Better Customer Service: Technology has enabled businesses to have interactive websites, 24/7 customer service, online chat support etc. through which they can always stay in touch with their customers. This has helped in increasing customer satisfaction as their requests are attended at the earliest.

Businesses in every industry are benefiting from the use of technology as it has made business processes easier for the staff as well as made customer interaction hassle free.

Centex Technologies is an IT consulting firm providing technical assistance to businesses around the globe. It also offers myriad of other services like website designing, website development, search engine optimization, software development etc. For more information, call at (972) 375 - 9654.