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Category Archives: News


The Facebook Color Change Scam Is Back

don't like FBNO – you cannot change the color of Facebook. Well… you can (at your own risk), but that app you just downloaded, it’s a scam.

Cheetah Mobile, security software researcher and provider, was the first to confirm the reemergence of the hack. The scam appears as a Facebook app that can be shared or posted on the News Feed. So far, more than 10,000 people have been tricked into downloading the malware, according to the Cheetah Mobile Security blog post.

Upon clicking the link from the News Feed, users will be directed to a phishing site that poses as a legitimate, Facebook-sponsored page. Once on the phishing page, users will be prompted  to watch a tutorial on how to change the color of their Facebook profile page. By agreeing to watch the video, users grant hackers access to their profiles, allowing the app to spam their friends. PC users who skip the video will be led to download a pornography video player, and smartphone users to download an antivirus app. Both are infected with malware.

Luckily, the malicious app is easy to get rid of. Those infected need only to remove it from the Facebook app settings page. Affected users should also change their Facebook password. For more information, check out Cheetah Mobile’s complete breakdown of the virus.

Google to Boost Encrypted Websites in Search Rankings

google encryptionGoogle is using its massive reach and power for good as the search engine pressures websites to better protect the people using their services. The move involves a change in Google’s formula for determining search result rankings. Websites that automatically encrypt their services will now be ranked higher in Google’s recommendation system. The goal is to pressure web developers to adopt technology that defends against hackers breaking into websites and stealing users’ sensitive information.

Edward Snowden’s revelations shined a light on the gaping security holes in unencrypted websites. Encryption makes it more difficult for hackers and the NSA alike to grab unsuspecting user’s personal data transmitted over unsecured Wi-Fi networks. You can spot an encrypted website by the telling “https” in the URL.

Billions of Passwords Stolen by Russian Cybercrime Ring CyberVor

hackerBy now you’ve likely heard about Tuesday’s New York Times report of the largest stockpile of stolen online credentials in known history. The mammoth hack job was brought to light by the cybersecurity firm Holden Security LLC, which revealed that a Russian hacking group has stolen 1.2 billion sets of unique login credentials, and more than 500 million email addresses.

The New York Times reports that the data comes from more than 420,000 websites ranging from well known companies to smaller operations. Holden Security says it isn’t revealing the names of the sites right now because doing so could pose additional risks to users. The so-called “CyberVor” gang collected more than 4.5 billion records in all, 1.2 billion appearing to be unique. There are about 2.9 billion Internet users worldwide… so it’s very likely that you’ve been affected.

What Small Business Owners Should Know About TLDs

coolcatLet’s face it: it’s hard to stand out in the vast landscape of the Internet of today, especially when it comes to your web address. If your business (like most) was a little slow to the .com game, your URL might leave a lot to be desired. For years, the Internet has been limited to just 22 generic top-level domains like the familiar .com, .net, and .org. Besides country domains (such as .jp for Japan or .ca for Canada), general-purpose domain choices have been very narrow.

Google My Business: A New Tool for Local Businesses & Brands

Google-My-BusinessGoogle revealed a major update for small and local businesses with the introduction of Google My Business. The new service enables businesses to create a single dashboard from which to manage core Google marketing products.

Think rudimentary CRM platform: businesses will be able to easily update information across Google, from listings to map placements, from customer service to marketing outreach. The service will also make it easier than ever before to gain visibility within the Google ecosystem. Google describes the service as a “free and easy way to find and connect with your people, wherever you are”. Of course users will need a Google Account to gain access to the service.

Facebook to Unveil New Feature to Empower Small Business

facebook-logoFacebook announced Thursday it’s testing a new feature for small and medium-sized businesses across the country. The feature, for now called the ‘Buy’ button, will allow users to purchase products directly from their News Feed, permitting impulsive online shoppers to buy instantly from businesses’ Facebook pages, without being redirected to the merchant’s website or app.

The feature is currently being beta-ed amongst a very, very small group; a Facebook spokesman claimed less than five companies are currently testing the feature. Businesses can embed the Buy button on their Page post or in Facebook ads, the button will be available on both mobile and desktop versions of Facebook.

Apple & IBM Join Forces

appleIBMOn Tuesday, Apple announced an agreement with IBM that signals the tech giant’s occupation of the enterprise market. Utilizing each company’s respective strengths, the plan is to build business apps and professional software that matches the quality and simplicity of Apple’s consumer applications. Apple will sell its devices (which will come preloaded with newly developed enterprise software) to IBM’s corporate customers, and also provide on-site support. IBM plans to make more than 100,000 employees available for the Apple initiative, which will develop more than 100 new apps for various industries.

Mobile Payments On The Rise

mobile paymentEven though the mobile payments movement is only in its frontier stages, it’s grown rapidly in recent years with worldwide payments reaching $163.1 billion in 2012. That figure jumped to $235.4 billion by the end of 2013 (Gartner). A recent Nielsen report about the state of the industry sheds light on the particularities of this growing trend.

Modest Growth Trend Continues In Small Business Economy

Newtek---No-BG-300Newtek, The Small Business Authority®, Releases May 2014 SB Authority Index

Newtek has announced the release of the SB Authority Index of small business indicators for May 2014 which reached 127.41 points. The Russell Microcap Index, approved SBA lending volumes and new business formations led the increase. The SB Authority Index is up 0.37% from April 2014.  On a year-over-year comparison, the SB Authority Index is up 7.31%.

Newtek Hires Two Senior Executives

Newtek_Web_Services_noNewtNewtek has attracted and retained the talents of two senior executives, Susan Streich and Harold Gartner.

Susan Streich will be joining Newtek Business Services, Inc. and Newtek Small Business Finance, Inc., our nationally licensed SBA 7(a) lender, as Chief Risk Officer and Chief Compliance Officer. Ms. Streich has over 30 years of experience as an executive-level finance professional with extensive experience initiating and leading national small business lending departments ensuring their compliance with federal and corporate requirements. Ms. Streich comes to Newtek from Booz Allen Hamilton where she served as a Senior Advisor, Project Lead and Subject Matter Expert for multiple government clients, including the U.S. Department of Treasury, Community Development Financial Institutions Fund and the State Small Business Credit Initiative Fund. Ms. Streich previously worked as a Director at Capital One Bank with an overall loan production exceeding $1.5 billion and as President of Transamerica Small Business Capital.





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