technology

Southeast Texas Medical Associates began using electronic health records in March 1998. Shortly after that, we determined that our “real” goal was “electronic patient management,” i.e., the leveraging of the capabilities of electronics to improve the quality of the care we provided to our patients.

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A few years at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, I was intrigued by the numbers of both prototype and production items that were evolving into what is now known as “Internet of Things,” or “IoT.” For the majority of us, when we think of the Internet, we think of our computers, tablets and smart phones.

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Some of you might remember my column from several weeks ago where I wrote about the newly available Google Project Fi cellular phone service.

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Several months ago, Microsoft offered millions of users of Windows 7 and 8.1 a free online update to the then newly released Windows 10. While Microsoft has claimed that as many as 110 million Windows 7 and 8.1 users did accept the free offer to upgrade to Windows 10, Microsoft has also expressed some concern that as many as a billion other Windows 7 and 8.1 users have not yet upgraded to Windows 10.

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Several months ago, Microsoft offered millions of users of Windows 7 and 8.1 a free online update to the then newly released Windows 10. While Microsoft has claimed that as many as 110 million Windows 7 and 8.1 users did accept the free offer to upgrade to Windows 10, Microsoft has also expressed some concern that as many as a billion other Windows 7 and 8.1 users have not yet upgraded to Windows 10.

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This past few weeks have been as busy for cyber security professionals as it has been for bargain shoppers. While there have been several stories in the national and local media about shopping safety and security, cyber crooks are also well aware that that the seasonal shopping frenzy creates illicit financial opportunities for those ingenious enough to create malware to again attack our “POS” (Point of Sale) payment systems, as well as to infect popular Android tablets with malware at the time of manufacture.

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Hardly a week goes by that an acquaintance does not ask me about recovering data from a lost, damaged, or otherwise dead smart phone. Just as the three most important words in computing are backup, backup and backup, backing up the contents of a smart phone may be even more imperative than for a desktop computer. Unlike a desktop computer, smart phones and tablets of any operating system are far more prone to breakage, loss or theft than the more stationary desktop computers.

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Another coordinated malware attack on Android devices has been detected. This particular family of malware has evolved through at least three modifications, each apparently to evade the defenses and tools that have been created to prevent their infection of Android devices, and make their removal very difficult, if not impossible.

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Project Fi Regional Coverage

When traveling with family and friends who have smart phones and other devices from T-Mobile, AT&T, Verizon and Sprint, the one constancy is that we all do not have the same level and degree of broadband wireless coverage at any given time. 

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For the past 14 years, I have been promoting the annual National Cyber Security Awareness Month, encouraging individuals, schools, colleges, governmental agencies, corporations, clubs, and other groups to get involved. Every year since its founding in 2001, this annual event has been recognized by bipartisan presidential proclamations declaring October as National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

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