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Preferred Blog

Vince Arden is the founder and President of Preferred Communication Systems. He is a graduate of DeVry University with over 30 years of experience in the IT industry. In addition to providing leadership in sales, marketing, project management, and service delivery at Preferred, Vince provides Virtual CIO-level services for the 4th-largest Realtor Association in the nation and to an Inc. 500 fastest growing company. He has been interviewed by industry publications like Redmond magazine, CRN News, and Continuum for his expertise related to cloud computing and the managed IT services industry. He also lends his voice as a contributing author for the Cloud Business Review.

His core purpose is to, "Help people achieve their greatest potential in work and L.I.F.E." He passionately works toward making this a reality in every aspect of life, including his areas of expertise, such as thought leadership, ideation, communication, team building, and Servant Leadership. Vince models building strong relationships, both with his team at Preferred and with his clients. He strives to build a network of people he can embolden to work smarter, so that they may ultimately be able to live better.

FBI Warns About Banking Scams

FBI Warns About Banking Scams

In response to the coronavirus pandemic, many people are avoiding human contact by turning to the Internet and mobile apps. On a national scope, mobile banking alone has seen an increase of 50 percent over just the last few months. In what certainly is no coincidence, the Federal Bureau of Investigation recently put out a warning that identified banking apps as likely targets for hackers.

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Your Eyes Will Thank You if You Try This Microsoft Word Dark Mode Trick

Your Eyes Will Thank You if You Try This Microsoft Word Dark Mode Trick

If you spend a lot of time in front of a computer, eye strain can be a big problem. Staring at a screen for too long can be irritating, and some even experience headaches and exhaustion from it.

Fortunately, a lot of common applications have been deploying dark or night modes. Microsoft Word’s take on this has been, well, less than desirable. We’ll show you a way around it to help save your eyeballs a lot of strain.

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Managed IT Services for Your Remote Workforce

Managed IT Services for Your Remote Workforce

Whether your business is just starting to open up, or your staff is diligently working remotely, the effects of COVID-19 are going to be long lasting for most businesses. For those of us who were lucky enough to get our employees situated and productive without putting them at risk, we’ve started to see the value in having the infrastructure to allow for remote access.

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Technology You’ll Need as Your Business Grows

Technology You’ll Need as Your Business Grows

If you are an entrepreneur, changing the way that you look at your business can be pretty difficult. Many businesses start out with not much more than a ray of hope, so if your business is doing well, you must be doing something right. When demand makes you think bigger, your technology spend becomes a major priority. Let’s take a look at some of the changes a growing business has to make. 

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Smartphone Addiction and Its Effects

Smartphone Addiction and Its Effects

Nowadays, most of us use smartphones; and, yes, probably most of us use them more than is healthy. There are those, however, that have come to depend on their mobile device so much that it completely dominates their lives. As people become even more attached to their phone, the impact this behavior has on their lives becomes more and more detrimental. 

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Do You Know How Your Hard Drive Saves Data?

Do You Know How Your Hard Drive Saves Data?

A lot of people never stop and consider how their data is saved. It’s something we all have, from old photos of our family vacations to the files kept on the server back at the office, but not many people know the actual mechanics behind it. Today, we wanted to go over these specifics, and hopefully make it clear why we always advocate for backup practices.

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Train Your Staff to Protect Your Business

Train Your Staff to Protect Your Business

In the course of doing business, sometimes the mundane and repetitive tasks, or the responsibilities that employees don’t necessarily always consider to be part of their jobs, can be overlooked. Like any other business, yours needs people to be vigilant to ensure that it isn’t the victim of a phishing attack. If your team isn’t well-trained, or if it isn’t engaged in the fight against cybercrime, you may find that your business is a sitting duck.

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How to Optimize Your IT Costs with the Help of an MSP

How to Optimize Your IT Costs with the Help of an MSP

A business’ budget is the biggest authority over it. As a result, each business needs to spend some time adjusting their operational investments to put itself in the best position to reach its goals… a process that a managed service provider’s help can make much simpler. Let’s review some ways that an MSP can help a business get that much more out of its investment into its IT.

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Working at the Office Has Its Benefits, Too

Working at the Office Has Its Benefits, Too

It’s incredible how working from home has become the new normal. Just a short time ago most business owners wouldn’t have batted an eye at shutting down the dreams of remote work, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, they were forced to adjust the way they looked at the situation. Employees in several industries have been working from home ever since. Now that most places have begun to re-open, we thought we would remind you that there are actually some benefits to coming to the office. 

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Alert: Hackers Target Mobile Banking Apps, Warns FBI

Alert: Hackers Target Mobile Banking Apps, Warns FBI

More people than ever are utilizing the conveniences of the Internet and mobile apps to avoid unnecessary human contact during the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, mobile banking alone has increased by 50 percent over the last few months, nationwide. In a recent PSA, the FBI warned that hackers are likely to be targeting mobile banking apps.

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Why You Need to Consider How Your Data is Stored

Why You Need to Consider How Your Data is Stored

If you have a computer, it has data on it that you’ve stored. Whether it’s the novel you’ve been working on in your spare time or pictures from your kid’s sixth grade graduation on your home PC, or the databases and applications that your business’ infrastructure supports, all of this data is generally stored in exactly the same way. Whatever your case, you should know that your data is terrifyingly fragile - far too fragile to ever be kept in just one place. Let’s dive deeper.

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Tip of the Week: How to React When Your Workspace Shifts

Tip of the Week: How to React When Your Workspace Shifts

While it seems that some business will best be conducted remotely for some time yet, it is still very important to start planning for a return to in-house operations now. This will help them to hit the ground running when the floodgates open back up. For this week’s tip, we’re going over how to return to the office after working remotely, while also reviewing some best practices for adjusting to remote work (just in case).

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PCI Compliance and Your Business

PCI Compliance and Your Business

The days of the cash-only business are over. It doesn’t matter if your business is a multinational corporation or you cut grass for a living, accepting payment cards is not only convenient for your customers, most of the time it’s the most secure way to get paid. In an effort to protect the personal and financial information of consumers who have come to depend on their payment cards, the banks that back the credit card industry have developed a regulation that businesses who process cards need to adhere to. Today, we will go over this regulation and how it affects small and medium-sized businesses

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Not All Threats are External

Not All Threats are External

As much as a business relies on its technology, it relies just as much upon its employees to properly put that technology to use. Unfortunately, this can very easily expose the business to various threats that involve their employees. Understanding these insider threats is crucial for a business, especially given how current events may tempt those who would never have considered them otherwise.

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Tip of the Week: Some Keyboard Shortcuts You May Not Know

Tip of the Week: Some Keyboard Shortcuts You May Not Know

Everyone knows some keyboard shortcuts. The normal ones that allow you to copy, cut, paste, lock your computer, select all, and more. Today, we thought we would tell you about some browser-based shortcuts that can definitely save you time and effort. 

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Is Your Staff Holding Up Their End on Security?

Is Your Staff Holding Up Their End on Security?

It seems as though every business is depending more and more on their IT. This means that their employees have more exposure to their IT systems. Unfortunately, that relationship is where the majority of the problems you will have are. The facts are that any business that has built a strong security policy has the solutions in place to keep direct infiltration from happening. Hackers have to find another way.

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Avoid Burning Out While Working From Home

Avoid Burning Out While Working From Home

A lot has been made about the newly-remote workforce that has been doing their best during the COVID-19 pandemic. One issue that many ignore is burnout. Sure, it happens in the office too, but there is something unsettling about getting up and going to work walking distance from your bed. Today, we will take a look at at-home worker burnout and give you a few tips to help you keep from suffering the same fate. 

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Tip of the Week: Laptop Battery Best Practices

Tip of the Week: Laptop Battery Best Practices

Nowadays, laptops are the weapon of choice for productivity. They function much like a desktop computer but are mobile enough to go anywhere with. Unfortunately, most laptops chew through their batteries in only a few hours of work and need to be plugged in in order to function. With so many people working from home, many people are using their laptops more like a desktop and keeping them plugged in around the clock. For this week’s tip, we’ll discuss the best practices of a laptop battery. 

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Remote Work Has Been Around for Longer than You’d Think

Remote Work Has Been Around for Longer than You’d Think

A lot of people aren’t aware that working from home is not a recent innovation. It can arguably be traced back over a million and a half years, when our ancestors would work relatively close to their dwelling places. Throughout our history, work has shifted away and back again to the remote methodology. Let’s look back through the years to see the progression of how people worked, based on the technology that was available.

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2-Factor, 2-Furious - How 2FA is Our Last Hope

2-Factor, 2-Furious - How 2FA is Our Last Hope

Two-factor Authentication, also referred to as Multi-Factor Authentication, or 2FA, is typically where you log in to something and have to type in a small code from your mobile device in order to finish the sign-in process. It’s really the only thing protecting your accounts anymore, so it’s critical to use it.

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      In response to the coronavirus pandemic, many people are avoiding human contact by turning to the Internet and mobile apps. On a national scope, mobile banking alone has seen an increase of 50 percent over just the last few months. In what certainly is no coincidence, the Fe...

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      Preferred Chicago - Mac and PC Managed Services and Support for the Windy City

      The paint is dry…..and spirits high!!!

      Preferred Celebrated Our Chicago Office Grand Opening 10/14/2019 - Serving Mac OS and WIndows OS Clients. Sparkly and fresh - our Chicago team loves the new space! Also, we had a blast at the grand opening. We'd love to have you visit soon.