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Technical Terms

Technology is filled with terms that the average person might not recognize or more likely, understand their true meaning. At Nothing But NET, we want to keep the techno-babble to a minimum, so you understand exactly what we are saying, each time we communicate. We also believe there are terms that carry different meaning to business versus technical users, depending on each person’s knowledge and experience. We thought it would be helpful to provide Nothing But NET’s interpretation of several select key industry terms that you may come across in our materials:

IT – Information Technology: This is a business’ inventory of computers and telecommunications equipment and software to store, retrieve, transmit and manipulate data.

Network – This term can mean different things to different people. In the context of this website, Network refers to any company or organization’s full computer system, including all hardware (desktops PCs, servers, switches, routers or firewalls), software, circuit lines, storage, and remote back-up infrastructure.

Managed Services – This term carries varying meanings. Primarily it is the practice of outsourcing day-to-day management responsibilities and functions as a strategic method for improving operations and cutting expenses. However, in today’s complicated business environment, companies cannot always employ sufficient technical skill sets, and a supplemental managed services provider is utilized to augment the company’s full-time IT staff.

Internet of Things (IoT) – A term that is meant to encompass today’s broad reach of how technology is now capable of connecting into the network of the everyday physical objects we use, from remote access to our computers to accessing our car’s computer via the internet, to accessing home surveillance, home refrigerators, and thermostats via the internet.

DR – Disaster Recovery: It involves a set of policies and procedures to enable the recovery or continuation of vital technology infrastructure and systems following a natural or human-induced disaster. This can range from the simple to the sophisticated, based on customer need, recovery time expectation, and budget.

Security – In the context of this website, “Security” refers to the process of taking physical and software preventative measures to protect the underlying networking infrastructure (computer systems) from unauthorized access, misuse, malfunction, modification, destruction, or improper info sharing, thereby creating a secure platform for computers, users and programs to perform optimally.

LAN / WAN – Local Area Network / Wide Area Network: a LAN is a computer network exclusive to one local office environment. The WAN is the grouping of all a company’s computer networks and the circuits of transport that connect those offices.

Cloud – A term that has been used, abused and overused... The term “The Cloud” is nothing more than a metaphor. Cloud refers to utilizing the Internet to access, share or store your business’ information in an effort to leverage the efficiencies and possible cost savings from this technology. It can be more secure and may be less costly to use the cloud than to repeatedly invest in new hardware, licenses & service contracts when such hardware upgrades are due.

Storage – The process of preserving a company’s vital data, to comply with its own business or legal policy, so that such data can be retrieved in the event of future need or catastrophic failure. Methods of storage will vary from backing up to Disks to store, to obtaining a SAN (Storage Area Network) device, to Remote Storage at a separate facility to ensure the data is safe from natural or man-made disaster.

Staff Augmentation – Some businesses employ an IT staff of one or more, while some feel that it makes more sense to outsource that need to a managed service provider (Example: Nothing But NET). It is also common for the company that employs a small IT staff to also use a third party IT provider to augment their in-house team for needed technology upgrades or for remote computer network monitoring.

Compliance & Testing – Depending on the business, a company may have to ensure that their computer network is fully in accordance with industry, financial privacy or health standards. (Examples would be HIPAA, PCI and SOC.) While many IT support providers do not possess the tools or skills to assist companies become compliant, it would be important to seek a partner that has such experience and expertise.

Phishing – A cyber-security act in which there is an attempt by a criminal enterprise to target any Internet user by misleading them into clicking on a false link or attachment. The goal is to get the user into trusting the link or site in order to obtain personal or financial information. (Note: Whaling is the same as Phishing, only the target is a senior executive within a corporation.)

Spear phishing – A targeted phishing attempt that seems more credible to its victims and thus has a higher probability of success. For example, a spear‐phishing email may spoof an organization or individual that the recipient actually knows.

Vishing – Similar to above (Phishing), only using the telephone with a recorded message requesting the listener to call a certain phone number and provide personal or financial information.

Adware - Pop‐up advertising programs that are commonly installed with freeware or shareware.

Bot – A target machine that is infected by malware and is part of a botnet (also known as a zombie).

Malware – Malicious software or code that typically damages or disables, takes control of, or steals information from a computer system.

Backdoor – Malware that enables an attacker to bypass normal authentication to gain access to a compromised system.

DDoS – (Distributed denial‐of‐service): A large‐scale attack that typically uses bots in a botnet to crash a targeted network or server.