How Facebook’s recent hacks affect us all

Stolen passwords, illegal hacks, election fraud – this may sound like a crime drama, but what we’re really talking about here is a short list of Facebook’s recent troubles. With more than 2.23 billion monthly active Facebook users around the world, even if you’re not using Facebook it’s very likely that someone in your home or part of your family is. And the troubles that Facebook has been going through highlight the importance of protecting your information no matter what you do online.

Kristy CooperHow Facebook’s recent hacks affect us all
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Softcom mythbusters: Real truths about rural internet service

You may think you know your internet, but much of what is passed about as truth is often out of date or even pure fiction. As the premier provider of high-speed internet service for rural communities in Central California, we thought it was time for some debunking.

MYTH: With unlimited plans I get the speeds I’m promised

While other carriers offer unlimited plans and super-high speeds, there are hidden limitations that can affect what you really get. Data may be unlimited, but speeds are not guaranteed. Only a certain amount of data per month is guaranteed to be delivered at 4G LTE speeds.  As of March 1, 2017, Verizon / AT&T caps it at 22 gigabytes; T-Mobile at 28 gigabytes. After you go over your 4G LTE cap, you are eligible to be “deprioritized” for the remainder of your billing cycle and your connection reduced to “3G speeds.” We know this can be confusing, so we’ve provided the information you need in this article, “The hidden limitations of unlimited plans.”

Kristy CooperSoftcom mythbusters: Real truths about rural internet service
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California vineyards and high-speed internet – a perfect pairing

How technology can help make a better wine

It takes a perfect synergy of elements to make a great wine. The right kind of soil, perfect weather conditions, healthy grapes and a productive harvest are all part of the process. While winemaking has been around for centuries, and vintners still depend on many traditional methods to make a great wine, technology is making inroads into vineyards and proving its value in helping to make a better wine.

Kristy CooperCalifornia vineyards and high-speed internet – a perfect pairing
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The Overlooked Advantages of Softcom

Our ability to provide strong and speedy internet connections is about much more than just towers and techies. We’ve got a lot going on behind the scenes that helps us stand out from the crowd. From in-person customer service with people who feel like family, to no-tricks contracts and super-speedy installation, we go the extra mile to give our customers the very best.

We invite you to take a peek behind the curtain at a few of the things that make our internet services for rural homes, businesses and communities stand out:

Super-Speedy Installation and Service: There are definitely benefits to having our headquarters and operations based centrally where we provide our services. No long waits – in fact, most new customer installations and on-site services are scheduled within a week of inquiry. Need help? Just give us a call. Software fixes and upgrades are often accomplished remotely, within minutes, and without appointments.

Kristy CooperThe Overlooked Advantages of Softcom
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6 Scary Things That Can Slow Your Internet Down

Sudden slow-downs in internet speed, especially right in the middle of an important project, can be very frustrating. Lagging speeds can be the result of any number of issues. Luckily, many of them can be solved at home without calling in a swat team of IT experts. We’ve rounded up a list of reasons that can cause internet to slow down so you never have to fear that spinning wheel again.

Kristy Cooper6 Scary Things That Can Slow Your Internet Down
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Busted! Wireless carriers caught putting the squeeze on streaming speeds. Here’s why Softcom will never do the same

A disturbing report showing a trend among wireless carriers of throttling down on streaming speeds for their customers – just because they can – has stirred up talks about net neutrality again.

A few months ago we shared our thoughts online about the Federal Communications Commission’s repeal of net neutrality rules and what could happen because of it. Net neutrality can be very difficult to understand, that’s why we laid it all out in an article on our blog, along with our official position that can be accessed here:

Our Position on Net Neutrality

Kristy CooperBusted! Wireless carriers caught putting the squeeze on streaming speeds. Here’s why Softcom will never do the same
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How to create strong passwords

Breaking news about hacking attacks and network breaches just keep rolling in – Equifax, Yahoo!, MyFitnessPal, the list goes on. We’ve become accustomed to seeing these breaches in the news regarding large companies, but what about your own security? Obviously, this is an important issue that everyone needs to address, and a great place to start is by taking a good look at your own password behaviors.

A recent research project called The Psychology of Passwords paints a scary picture showing that the main cause of network breaches and hacked accounts is, to put it bluntly, due to consumer disinterest in creating and maintaining safe password habits.

Kristy CooperHow to create strong passwords
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New study predicts over 5 million will cut cord in 2018

A recent report that studied the TV watching and cord-cutting behaviors of viewers in the Unites States highlights the acceleration of people choosing to terminate their paid-TV services at such a rate that they predict that by the end of 2018 nearly 5.4 million consumers will have severed all ties to tradition television access.

Consulting firm Cg42 published the “2018 Cord Cutter & Cord Never Study” sharing their in-depth analysis of both US consumers who opted out of subscription-based Paid-TV service in the last several years (aka: Cord Cutters) as well as US consumers who have never subscribed to paid-TV service (aka: Cord Nevers).

Kristy CooperNew study predicts over 5 million will cut cord in 2018
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How to lower your electricity bills this summer

Summer’s heat can be fun when you’re heading to the beach or out for a picnic, but not so much fun when it comes to utility bills. It makes sense that as energy use goes up during the summer, so does your bills. That’s why we’ve put together this list of easy ways to save energy while still enjoying your summer. URL

#1: Watch for energy vampires

Energy vampires are appliances or other devices that slowly drain small amounts of electricity, even when not in use, that add up over time. Things like toasters, coffee makers, and digital photo frames are a few examples. Just turning them off doesn’t do the trick. You must unplug them when not in use to stop the energy drain.

Kristy CooperHow to lower your electricity bills this summer
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How summer heat can affect your internet

Summer heat – it wilts flowers, melts ice cream, and makes your internet stop working. Two of these statements are true, but the last one not so much. While summer heatwaves can affect your internet, it’s not a common issue and usually easily addressed. Here’s how heat can affect internet connectivity, and what to do if you suspect the heat’s wilting your online connection.

One common issue during heatwaves are blackouts or brownouts from overloaded electric grids. Electricity powers the towers that provide your internet signal. Electricity also powers the routers and computers you use to receive those signals. Unexpected power outages can negatively affect all of the above. High tech operating systems are complex and in normal conditions when they are shut off will go through a standard shutdown sequence to make sure all running processes have correctly terminated before powering off. A sudden loss of electricity can interrupt important signals and connections and cause systems to experience slow restarts or even leave them in an inoperable state that requires technical support.

Kristy CooperHow summer heat can affect your internet
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