Thursday, December 18, 2008

<strong> and <b> / <em> and <i> - Which is for what?

A question that has been bugging me all day today when I was conducting some SEO work today was is the <strong> and <em> tag any different to the <b> and <i> tag. The conclusion I have come to after researching the topic is that you use the <strong> and <em> instead of <b> and <i> tag when you are trying to emphasize keywords on a page as readers treat the two tags differently. They achieve the same visual effect however the <strong> and <em> tags are "logical" tags. This means that they are for when the developer wants to add emphasis to particular words or phrases. A reader for a user with disabilities may say the word louder for example. The <b> and <i> tags are for visual layout effects on a page and do not have the same effect on a reader or add any weight to your keywords in the search engines. I suggest when crafting a page and that if you want to format something purely for visual effect then you use the <b> or <i> tag, as they will reduce you page size very slightly, hence increase load time. This post by Nikki Pilkington also states that there is no effect in the SEO world.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Improve Your Businesses Wireless Security

A business wireless network should be a network that is safe from hackers and unauthorised users. Here are some steps to secure your network from such intrusions;

Create a Wireless Security Policy

Create a policy that specifies who can use the network, and how to protect the network
This is one below is taken from a Cisco template I found on a website;
- Acceptable use policy, to specify what types of network activities are allowed and which ones are prohibited.
- E-mail and communications activities, to help minimise problems from e-mails and attachments.

- Antivirus policy, to help protect the network against threats like viruses, worms, and Trojan horses.
- Identity policy, to help safeguard the network from unauthorised users.
- Password policy, to help employees select strong passwords and protect them.
- Encryption policy, to provide guidance on using encryption technology to protect network data.
- Remote access policy, to help employees safely access the network when working outside the office.

Educate your Employees
Educate your employees and get them involved in protecting the network. Use informational posters and training about security, passwords, and privacy to help you keep your business information and communications secure.

Secure the WLAN
- Use strong encryption: When you install your network, set up the strongest wireless encryption you can. WEP encryption is adequate, but WPA and WPA2 are better options.

- Secure communications: Encrypt data that travels on the network, and authenticate users to be sure you know who is using the WLAN.

- Change the default network name to something that is hard to identify so it is unrecognisable.

- Use MAC address control lists combined with encryption to restrict user access.
- Be sure that management ports are secured with non default names and passwords.

- Hide the access points to prevent tampering.

- Use video surveillance cameras to monitor your office building and site for suspicious activity.

Protect Your Company from Outside Threats
Protect wireless devices with the same security you use for the your company network. (i.e. firewalls, VPNs, and antivirus software)

Protect Your Wired Network from Wireless Threats

Install wireless intelligent protection switching (IPS) devices to prevent unauthorised, "rogue" access points and other wireless threats.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Review of Untangle UTM

Recent open source start-up Untangle has launched one of the first open-source unified threat management software platforms (UTM) for network security, targeted at small to mid-sized businesses. The Untangled Gateway Platform was built around more than 30 open source projects, including SpamAssasin, ClamAV, and Snort, and competes with proprietary systems from SonicWall, Barracuda and WatchGuard, among others.

Untangle is aimed at SMB appliances and is geared toward 250 users or fewer, and is meant to work on one server although not released as an enterprise product it is targeted at SMB’s who previously may have used a combination of open source projects.

There is an enterprise-scale version slated for a 2009 release with the free version including a spam, virus, spyware, phish and attack blocker, as well as a web filter, protocol control, open VPN, intrusion
prevention, firewall, router and web reporting.

The paid version of Untangle includes active directory integration and advanced policy management, as well as remote access portal and configuration back-up.

Pricing for up to 10 users is US$25 a month, and it's double for up to 50 users. From 51 to 150 users it will cost US$150 a month, and for more than 151 users US$250 a month.

For more information go to

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Technology Tips Blog - Update - Dec 2008

Just a quick post to let you know that I have been moving around some of the page elements and navigation on the website to make it easier for readers to get around and discover the content on the blog. Moving the tag navigation closer to the top of the page I thought made sense as it makes it easier to find relevant topics on the website as well as adds the ability for users to subscribe via email to new posts, become followers of the blog and bookmark post on social media websites. Please sign up as a reader as a form of your appreciation for updated tips and site content. Just to let you know I have a guest called James Kambourian, a good friend of mine and a network administrator with management skills who will be featuring some posts in coming in the coming months and if I get a good response to his posts then I he will become a permanent feature on the site, so I will appreciate your feedback in coming months. Over Christmas time I will also be giving away some copies of software to some lucky readers so please leave comments on the blog as these are your entries into the draw for the software. Im still striking a deal with the software provider though as to how many copies they will be providing me so I will keep you posted on this one. It is likely to be a piece of software that has been featured on the technology tips blog recently though just to let you know.