Understanding Customer Experience: A Deep Dive into Web Hosting Satisfaction

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Understanding Customer Experience: A Deep Dive into Web Hosting Satisfaction

If you say you’ve got a lot riding on something, it doesn’t necessarily mean someone or something is in the saddle or anything of the sort. There’s no actual riding going on, and instead what it means there is the potential to be successful or unsuccessful with something you have value in. For any business of any size these days they will have a lot riding on their website, and the value they’ll have it is growth and profitability. You go into business to make money, and a website is increasingly how your customers are going to find you these days. So reliable Linux web hosting in Canada is going to be a priority for these folks.

And fortunately consumers do have options as there are many web hosts in Canada that have reasonable pricing for reliable web hosting. Competition exists in any business, but in ours here we need to have exceptional customers service to go along with everything else people will want to be assured of with their web hosting – uptime guarantees, dedicated Linux server hosting for large e-commerce websites with heavy traffic from online customers, SSL certificates for transaction security, and much more.

And that’s what we strive to do here. The majority of Canadian web hosting providers will have online help feature for customers and you get live real-time assistance related to anything with your web hosting package. We do too, and we also make a point of offering a money-back guarantee that our Linux web hosting in Canada is as rock-solid and affordably priced as you’ll find anywhere in the country.

Right Touch

Customer trust when it comes to web hosting isn’t built exclusively on technical capabilities. Yes, you need to be known for web hosting that has sites alongside the information superhighway all day every day and reliably, but there also needs to be a very responsive human element to the way you offer customer service.

We see customer service as a term that encompasses the overall perception and interactions a customer has with a company during the time that they are receiving a paid service. The majority of customers like the affordability of shared web hosting plans and the simplicity of their needs is met quite nicely with them. But it’s not these members who will have customer service inquires as often as those who are enjoying dedicated Linux server hosting.

That may be due to the complexity of what they’re doing with cPanel controls, and that’s perfectly alright. Customer experience contributes significantly to the way a customers will be satisfied or not with their Canadian web hosting provider. There can be various elements to this, including the ease of website setup, the performance and reliability of hosting services, customer support availability and satisfaction, and what’s seen to delivered in the way of overall value.

Timely Responses

Being readily available and quick to respond does wonders for the way your customers will evaluate you as a much-needed service provider for their business. Needing assistance with technical issues is a common inquiry where the web hosting provider will do very well for themselves in this area if they don’t have much downtime between when a customer service request is submitted and then when it is responded to.

Website setup and onboarding questions will come in frequently too. A customer may have a question about selecting a hosting plan, and then registering a domain after choosing Linux web hosting in Canada before they encounter some speedbumps with configuring their website. These days you need to be able to provide your help in a hands-on interaction between the customer and a user-friendly control panel and dashboard.

You’ll also want to have additional tools available to paying subscribers that increase their usability factor with their web hosting and in doing so make it more likely they’ll be satisfied and continue to renew their domain name through you. Examples can be website builders, one-click application installations, automated backups, security enhancements, or performance optimization tools.

Meet Every Expectation

There’s been industry-wide research suggesting that 81% of customers will purchase again if they’re entirely satisfied with the customer service they’ve received. But if that’s not what they believe they’ve received then the same estimates are that 76% of customers will switch to a competitor. This likely also applies for Windows web hosting in Canada. Every host is going to be aware that good and reliable web hosting is going to be a part of these people’s operating costs for the long foreseeable future, and it’s very much in their interest to retain these people as customers.

Keep in mind too that these same satisfied customers may well recommend their web hosting provider to their friends if they have had a great customer experience. This can lead to new customers coming on board, and this will add to the ranks of your loyal customer base.

In the bigger picture, we always need to striving to demonstrate care, be responsive, and show a commitment to customer satisfaction. Hosting providers can genuinely go the extra mile by focusing on select aspects.

Aim to Be Seamless Across All Channels

Customers these days will be contact companies through social media, website forms, live chat, email or phone. You should be focusing on how to accommodate inquiries equally as quickly and thoroughly no matter how they’re sent to your web hosting customer service representatives. And that means being able to accommodate customers even if they’re moving from one platform to another. Customers will often expect that an agent has the necessary access to their account to address their inquiry effectively too.

Other commonalities that you’ll hear dedicated Linux server hosting providers talking about in their relation to good customer service in web hosting is see everything from an elevated view and making notes about trends seen with needs, difficulties, and goals. Identifying and correctly analyzing them can help you address areas where you can be better with your service offering, and the big-picture benefits of that don’t need to be explained.

Speaking for ourselves, we’ve been a leading Canadian web hosting provider for so long that we feel confident we can receive, handle, and provide the right solution for any customer service inquiry we receive connected to any aspect of what customers are able to do with controlling their website through cPanel here or anything related to administration and account services.

Unveiling SSD Storage: Enhancing Performance in Our Hosting Plans

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Unveiling SSD Storage: Enhancing Performance in Our Hosting Plans

Unveiling SSD Storage: Enhancing Performance in Our Hosting Plans

There was once when tubes were on the top of the electrical circuit kingdom but since then solid state drives have really taken over based on their reliability. Vintage guitar amp enthusiasts will argue otherwise, but everyone else who has an understanding and appreciation of this kind of engineering will know that solid state really is tops for working reliability and the ability to withstand shocks to the system. Without going into too much detail that’s the reason that SSD storage is a big part of why SSD web hosting is superior for most.

That reliable performance has everything to do with these drives’ integrated circuit assemblies and the way the make data storage different – and better. Traditional hard disk drives wouldn’t have had tubes, but that’s not the point here. What is the point is that the reason SSD drives are better is because they don’t run as hot, they don’t run as loudly, and they are a lot more shock resistant. But what is even more important as it relates to being better is that they use less power, are much less likely to fail mechanically, and – last but not least – you don’t need to defragment them.

Your Canadian web hosting provider will need to be writing them over, and sometimes much more frequently than you’d think so using these drives in Canada is the sensical choice to be offering hosting customers who only have one priority with this – reliable uptime for their website and reasonable prices on SSD web hosting in Canada. These compact storage devices have become the backbone of modern hosting plans, and they’ve given websites a whole new level of performance and reliability.

NAND Flash Plus 1

A simple definition for SSD drives is that they are a type of storage device that uses semiconductor memory technology equipped with NAND Flash memory rather than spinning disks to store and retrieve data. They are almost like a larger-scale and speedier version of the USB flash drives you have at home, but sitting in a computer instead. Faste access times is definitely the foremost benefit of SSDs compared to HDD drivers, and their higher read and write speeds make all the difference in the world.

These drives also have no moving parts and are more compact than most hard drives. Their ability to handle multiple input/output operations simultaneously also makes them the better fit for web hosting needs since websites must often access a great deal of information from different sources – databases, images, audio files, and more.

SSDs are also nicely versatile for web hosting providers because they can be compatible with preceding drives’ file systems and they can store different types of website files fairly reliably too. Another big plus is the way they can have the same interface connected to a web, and that contributes to lower-cost operations in a significant way.

Super Speedier

You can actually watch and see how data retrieval becomes a lightning-quick process with an SSD drive compared to an HDD drive. Web pages do load impressively faster, and that’s high on the priority for anyone who has their website hosted by us. If a website is slow, you’ll need to find a solution before you go down in SERP rankings.

SSDs score much higher for reliability too, and it is even more emphatically clear with the way that up until recently hard drives were still considered relatively reliable despite having moving parts. Moving parts will often be the first that start to fail because of ongoing wear n’ tear with conventional hard drives. And even in the event something like this happens with an SSD drive you have a much more likely chance of recovering the data.

The long and short of it all is that SSD storage with SSD web hosting is so much better for the seamless navigation and interactions that webmasters want to hear of website visitors experiencing. By harnessing the power of SSD storage, website owners can significantly enhance the overall user experience.

Less Power Usage Too

Solid state drives consume less power than standard hard drives do, and experts familiar with the technology will tell you they often use 5 watts or less per cycle. This means an environmentally friendly choice too, and many of the type of people who will choose 4GH for web hosting in Canada will want to see that as part of a company’s values.

Dedicated hosting plans with SSD web hosting are always going to provide sites with the best performance environment. But we can also see that SSD storage brings a competitive edge to shared hosting plans, with multiple sites being together all on one single server and often with a smaller data center connected.

The lightning-fast read and write speeds of SSDs give shared hosting more of what it needs to run smoothly and not be putt-putting at times when there’s not enough bandwidth available to allow for traffic spikes.

Best for All Web Hosting

SSD drives are also a big part of why all our different web hosting package options can be relied on for optimal performance when paired with the strength of having 2 large data centers in Canada. We offer SSD storage with every hosting package we have here and we definitely make the grade for reliable and fast web hosting that has the best SSD servers being a big part of why we’re able to offer that. SSD web hosting can push your website’s performance into a new stratosphere, and site visitors will be extremely pleased with lightning-fast speed, and provides the reliability and stability your online presence deserves.

Mastering cPanel: Your Comprehensive Guide to Efficient Website Management

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8 Essential Tips to Boost the Performance and Speed of Your WordPress Website

8 Essential Tips to Boost the Performance and Speed of Your WordPress Website

For many people, their high level of proficiency with whatever they’re good at is the result of their growing up with it. Now to have grown up with web development and operations you’d have to be a fairly young person right now given the Internet isn’t even quite 30 yet. Those youngsters are going to be the most capable of being a webmaster and operating/managing a website, but for those of us who were born decades before the advent of the information superhighway that may not be such an easy thing to do.

Here at 4GoodHosting, we’re like any good Canadian web hosting provider in the fact that we get that, and that’s why most of us will provide our recipients with cPanel controls that make the processes a lot easier and doable. The ease of use and far-reaching functionality of cPanel is the reason it has become as ubiquitous as it is for website management through a web host. Others are good, and some would even say equally good but cPanel is the industry standard for anyone enjoying the best Linux shared hosting.

We’re inclined to say it’s intuitive, but we realize that some may not take to it as easily or get a handle on it as fast as we might. So for this entry, we’re going to provide a comprehensive guide to efficient website management with cPanel. And for anyone weighing their options for the best Linux web hosting in Canada, it may be that this demonstration is part of what makes going with either shared or VPS hosting here even more convincing. So let’s get into it.

Ideal Interface

cPanel controls and sets various aspects of your website, and that’s a necessity as ever website needs an interface operating behind it and used to tailor the site preferences so that it runs and displays exactly as you’d like it to. This includes email accounts, database connections, and FTP settings available through cPanel’s easy-to-use interface. It’s a WHCP – web hosting control panel – and as we mentioned every web hosting provider will have one that they make available to customers.

The reason being they’d be inundated with requests, demands, and all sorts of ‘can you do ____ for me’ inquiries to the point they’d never be able to operate the business.

cPanel is a web-based graphical user interface (GUI) that works very well for simplifying website management and server administration tasks for users of all technical backgrounds. It’s a robust and user-friendly control panel that has been integral in the web hosting industry and continues to be to this day.

With cPanel you can configure almost anything related to your website and web server, and some of the most popular customization is with email creation and management, domain redirects and management, website file and database managers, and implementing optional security features. You can also change server and software settings, and dictate how frequently your site will conduct backups or enact restores. cPanel will always be present with Windows web hosting Canada plans, and it can be configured to work with many web hosting plans and dedicated servers, too.

Getting Started

We’ll start with access here. You can access cPanel from your web host’s dashboard with the username and password provided to you with the onboarding communication. It shouldn’t require anything more than entering those credentials and then you should be in your cPanel and ready to take control. Navigation is nicely simple with a responsive and intuitive interface. On the left of it, you’ll see all your products and services you can manage. You’ll also find a submenu under Tools, and this is where most of the settings we’ll need in this tutorial will be.

All tools are split into categories in the center for easy access, but you’re able to reorder any of these by clicking and dragging them with your mouse, and over time you’ll find you use some more than others and these can be repositioned to the top. On the right sidebar is where you’ll have your general server information, along with your site’s current domain name (URL) and IP address from which the last login occurred. Plus there’ll be some very basic statistics about the site’s storage, bandwidth, and file usage.

The entire panel has a nice and simple point-and-click interface design, and most people learn to make their way around it fairly quickly along with customizing their site without much in the way of struggles or difficulty.

Basic Website Management

For most people their website management involves handling essential tasks such as creating email accounts, managing website files, and handling databases. A significant number of sites being hosted here at 4GoodHosting our with any other web host in Canada will be WordPress sites. In the event yours is the same, you’ll need to start by knowing how to install WordPress from cPanel.

Inside your cPanel dashboard, locate the ‘Softaculous Apps Installer’ icon or simply search for ‘Softaculous’ in the search bar. Click on the ‘WordPress’ icon or search for ‘WordPress’ within the Softaculous interface. What you’ll see next is an overview of WordPress along with an ‘Install Now’ button, and when you click on it that will start the installation process. That’s all there is to it.

Next, let’s discuss creating email accounts in cPanel. Go to the ‘Email Accounts’ section and select the domain that you want to have a custom email address for. Go ahead and pick a username for your email account that represents you or your website, and then your next step is to set a strong password for added security. You have the option of using the Password Generator here if you don’t have a strong password of your own.

Customize Email Settings

Customizing various settings is possible after creating your email account. Your options here will include autoresponders where you set up automated responses for your email account, forwarding for redirecting messages to another address, and spam filters to limit unwanted emails.

From there we’ll move to managing files and your FTP account in cPanel. This is advisable as understanding File Transfer Protocol (FTP) can give you greater control over your site’s file structure. With FTP, you can directly upload files to your account’s storage from your computer via an FTP client like FileZilla, or another free FTP client software.

Uploading and managing website files is possible by accessing the ‘File Manager’ in your cPanel dashboard under the ‘Files’ section, and for most they will look for the ‘public_html’ folder for the main website. Click ‘upload’ and select the files you want to upload from your local computer and then once they’re in place you can move, rename, or delete files as needed using the File Manager’s interface.

Database Management

Databases are integral infrastructure for websites, and that’s very true for those powered by content management systems (CMS) like WordPress and others that are standard with the best Linux web hosting. You will want to know how to set up and manage databases, and in the cPanel dashboard you can go straight to the ‘databases’ before clicking ‘MySQL Databases.’ Enter a name and click ‘create database’ to create a new database. You can then add a user to the database, along with assigning privileges to those users or limiting them with custom permissions.

Connect your website to the database using the provided database details. Connecting your WordPress website to the database is best done with the first install wizard or automatically if you’re taking advantage of 4GoodHosting’s Managed WordPress Hosting, which is recommended if you want maximum functionality and page loading speeds for your WordPress website.

PhpMyAdmin will likely be your primary tool for configuring or creating a MySQL database and accounts, but it’s good to know you won’t see it on your cPanel as it comes out of the box. It is a separate application you can launch from inside cPanel and again you’ll go to the Tools submenu to find it.

cPanel for Advanced Website Features

Not all sites are built simply or function basically, and for ones that have greater needs, a webmaster will want to be able to fine-tune and optimize their website to a greater extent. Security and backups are a priority for a lot of people with these sites, and the good news is that implementing security measures to your account is now easier than ever.

cPanel offers a range of tools to help you safeguard your online space. The latest versions of cPanel come with a strong two-factor authentication system that provides fantastic security beyond the usual username and password combinations. cPanel will also provide you feedback on the security strength level for your password(s). Hotlink protection is another good feature, and it prevents other websites from directly linking to your files so that they’re not able to advantage of your account’s bandwidth.

Two-factor authentication for an additional layer of security is also good, and you can also browse and choose SSL certificates that secure data sent between your website and your visitors. This enhances security and your site’s credibility will be boosted in the process.

Performance optimization can also be a part of the equation and benefits of having cPanel at your disposal, and that’s what we’ll conclude with here. Look into Gzip compression, image compression, and various other optimization tasks, and you also have the option of trusting in the process and going with cPanel’s Optimization option to compress all content on your website for better performance.

8 Essential Tips to Boost the Performance and Speed of Your WordPress Website

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8 Essential Tips to Boost the Performance and Speed of Your WordPress Website

It’s hard to think of examples where complexity is preferable to simplicity, at least when you look at whatever it is for an end-user perspective. There are times when architectural complexity is needed for any number of different interests, but when it’s you that is doing the building and using of it then you probably want everything to be as simple as possible. That certainly applies to websites, as most people who don’t need anything too fancy with theirs are going to be fine with a simple yet functional and fairly good looking one too.

For many that’s a WordPress website, and the ease of use with putting one together and maintaining or upgrading it is why WordPress websites are more numerous that other type of site. Good Canadian web hosting providers like us here at 4GoodHosting are receptive to that popularity and will offer managed WordPress web hosting plans that are optimized for these types of sites. They are also decidedly affordable for people who aren’t leaning on a website to be the most focal point of whatever is they’re promoting for themselves with Toronto web hosting

So going the simple route with a WordPress website is a great place to start if you’re claiming a domain name for the first time and you’re ready and eager to make yourself visible on the information superhighway. There are also ways to make your WordPress site function ever better despite it’s barer-bones simplicity, and that’s what we’re going to look at with this blog entry.

Speedier is Important

Optimizing website speed isn’t a nice-to-have for WordPress website owners, and nowadays it’s really something that you can’t do without at all. There’s been research that’s indicated nearly half (47%) of consumers won’t give a web page any longer than two seconds to load. This is something nearly everyone can relate to, as no one is willing to tolerate or be patient with a page that doesn’t load sufficiently quickly.

There are several strategies you can implement to speed up your WordPress website to go along with the speed benefits that come with Toronto web hosting optimized for WordPress sites. So without any further talk here are our actionable steps that can increase your website’s ability to load with the type of speed that visitors are going to expect with it.

  1. Optimize Images

Images are an integral part of having the right type of engaging content, but they can also be a part of the reason why your pages aren’t loading quickly enough. What you can do here is compress your pictures before uploading them and this is the easiest way to remedy this situation and you’ll quickly see that your images don’t look any worse because you’ve compressed them.

There are a number of free plugins that you can use to do this, and you can also consider using the modern WebP format, which gets high marks for its high compression rate and excellent visual quality.

  1. Leverage Browser Caching

Browser caching is a means for storing frequently visited elements of your website in a visitor’s browser. The advantage to this is in the way that it lets you load the cached elements like images, stylesheets, and JavaScript files swiftly any time that same user returns to your site. Plugins are ready to make this step easy for you too, and ones like W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache can be used to make browser caching a part of your WordPress website’s functionality.

  1. Use Content Delivery Networks (CDNs)

You’ll find that most WordPress websites will be utilizing a Content Delivery Network (CDN). This is a distributed network of servers for delivering your website’s content from a server nearest to the user’s location and chosen from many available ones around the world. The way it speeds up the delivery is based on shortening the physical distance the data needs to travel, and just like that you’ve got faster page loads and an increased likelihood of your site visitors sticking around. Look into any of the best ones out there, including CloudFlare and MaxCDN, that integrate easily with WordPress.

  1. Go with Lightweight Themes and Plugins

When a WordPress theme is too heavy, it can detract from the website’s page loading speeds. Choosing lightweight themes with fewer file sizes and features is the better choice here, and if it can be paired with cleaner and more streamlined code it can really go a long way with decreasing the complexity of your website’s structure. You can be increasing selective of plugins here too, because you never want to have too many of them. An excess of plugins can mean more HTTP requests, and that will mean more of the slowdowns we’re trying to avoid here.

  1. Minimize External HTTP Requests

Continuing with talk around HTTP requests, the biggest problem is when they’re directed towards external scripts like fonts and tracking codes, something that happens quite regularly when servers get requests. When this happens delays with page loadings may occur. Auditing the site to identify any unnecessary external requests is advisable, and you may find ones that are detrimental but won’t affect your site’s functionality and aesthetics if you remove / replace them.

  1. Prioritize Database Optimization

It’s common for a WordPress database to become cluttered with unnecessary data over time, and often the culprits are post revisions, spam comments, and transients. It’s smart to clean and optimize your database regularly so that your site’s performance benefits from it. Most Toronto web hosting providers will have several WP plugins available through their control panel for site webmasters to remove unneeded data and streamline your database, and again this will contribute to faster loading times.

  1. Enhance Mobile Responsiveness

A website that is fully responsive for mobile web browsers is of paramount importance in an era where most people go online via their smartphones more often than by any other means. It’s a standard recommendation that WordPress website operators optimize their site for mobile devices, and that is best done with responsive design techniques and testing performance on various devices and screen sizes. This may be a more laborious process, but it’s something you can and should do if your aim is to deliver a seamless and fast browsing experience for mobile users too.

  1. Go Enterprise Level

This last suggestion if probably a more obvious one, but there are different type of WordPress web hosting available and enterprise level ones will be more expensive. But they’ll also give your website much more in the way of the built-in resources needed for optimized performance, and boosting loading speeds in a big way as part of that. Higher level WP hosting packages in Canada are definitely recommended for Toronto web hosting or anywhere else in the country, and multi-level caching with dynamic caching technology that is engineered explicitly for WordPress is the biggest reason why these advanced WordPress web hosting options are worth the added expense.

Role of Hypervisors in Virtual Private Servers

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Role of Hypervisors in Virtual Private Servers

All of us breathe most optimally through our noses, and our elbows, knees, or any other joint in the body will have nothing to do with oxygen intake and delivery. But when people talk about elbow space it can have a very direct and figurative connection to another term – breathing room. Any time you say something needs more elbow room or breathing space it means that the current accommodating environment is too small. More space is needed for the area around you or whatever else it may be. There’s a very valid analogy that can be connected between these expressions and web hosting through a virtual private server.

The primary and nearly exclusive reason that someone will move their site from a shared hosting arrangement to a VPS one is because there website needs more breathing room, elbow space, or whatever you want to call it. Sites that are larger and / or have more dynamic multimedia content will often eventually need to have VPS hosting. Another common scenario is that a site becomes more popular and has more inbound traffic and there’s not enough to accommodate that with shared hosting.

Like any good Canadian web hosting provider we’re keen to make prospective customers aware of what type of web hosting will fit them best, along with explaining what makes one or the other work as well as it does. That’s what we’ll do here with this week’s entry in talking about how hypervisors are an important of what gives VPS hosting the power and potential it does for people who need a more capable environment for their business website.

Role of Hypervisors in Virtual Private Servers

Role of Hypervisors in Virtual Private Servers

Smart Splits

Understanding what a hypervisor is first requires an understanding what a virtual private server is, and how they work. We have gone over this at length before so we’ll just go over it briefly here. A VPS server is one server that’s split up into many different servers. Try thinking of it as an office building. While there is only one building, it’s separated into different units and there are different businesses or professional service providers renting just one unit for their own use. Having other units right next to you in the same building doesn’t take away from any one of their abilities to operate their business.

This is sort of how a virtual private server works, and what a hypervisor does is allow for truer and more ideal virtualization so that each site is able to function as their webmaster intends with fewer compromises in performance or any other attribute. They are able to install their own operating system, and use their own drivers and software on their own VPS. Quality hypervisors make it so that nothing on a virtual private server will be relying on any underlying software.

Only virtual private servers that use hypervisor visualization will come with this type of technology, and it is most optimally rolled out as part of ones with OS-level virtualization. There is an important difference there, and that’s where we’ll move to next. Full OS-level virtualization means there is an operating system (OS), a kernel, hardware, drivers, and more that will be used by every virtual server located there out of functional necessity.

Better Customization

A VPS without a hypervisor will still be an option for sites that need that space, but you’ll have plenty of constraints when it comes to customization. You’ll still have access to as much bandwidth and storage space as you want, and you can reboot your own virtual server without having any effect on the other websites being run off the physical server. Where you will be lacking is with the ability to customize – you won’t be able to fully customize it as you would be able to with a virtual private server that works with a hypervisor.

A hypervisor-based VPS is also superior for in-site optimization and even the ability to upgrade without leaving your current web hosting package. Otherwise if you need a great deal more resources than what you currently have, or if you’re changing your package completely, you may need to be moved to a different server. Those who need true virtualization and are choosing VPS hosting are advised to make sure that they’re choosing Hypervisor-based VPS and not OS-level virtualization.

As always we are happy to discuss this in further detail with you if you are considering upgrading from shared hosting or starting with VPS hosting to begin with.

New Google Chrome IP Protection Feature Set to Offer Timely Value

8 Essential Tips to Boost the Performance and Speed of Your WordPress Website
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New Google Chrome IP Protection Feature Set to Offer Timely Value

New Google Chrome IP Protection Feature Set to Offer Timely Value

Most people don’t give much thought to what’s going on beyond their view when they’re utilizing the Internet for whatever reason, and in an ideal world there wouldn’t be any reason for them to think about risks connected to that very normal and commonplace activity. And these days most of us are online with our mobile devices just as often as we’re doing so seated at a notebook or desktop. In much the same way your home or building has an address on the front of it, so does your spot along the information superhighway.

That’s a very simplistic way of defining what an IP address is, but it works well enough in context here as it indicated where you’re accessing the internet from, and it provides a fairly accurate ‘location’ as part of the basic workings of how the Internet functions. IP addresses allow for consistent user profiles and are needed for critical web functionalities like routing traffic, fraud prevention, and other vital network tasks.

Nine times out of 10 it is not going to matter if your IP address is ‘exposed’, meaning that there’s an identifiable spot on the Web where you’re accessing it from. But every once in a while there are real risks with having it on display like that, and so now a new feature with the world’s most popular web browser is aiming to remove that risk factor.

As you’ll find is the case with most reputable Canadian web hosting providers, we like to point out these types of developments when they have the potential to be very valuable for people. This is definitely the case here, and especially considering that you and most others who’ll be reading this are very likely doing so on a Chrome browser. So with this week’s entry here we will talk about how the newest Chrome update comes with an excellent new feature that can ‘hide’ your IP address from view.

New Google Chrome IP Protection Feature Set to Offer Timely Value

New Google Chrome IP Protection Feature Set to Offer Timely Value

Made Anonymous

Have your IP address exposed and you’re at risk of cyberattacks of all sorts, location tracking, hacking, Cyberattacks, information intercepts, network system breaches, data transmission spying, and monitoring of your browsing activity for no-good purposes. There’s more in the way of potential bad outcomes too, and the risks of all of them are more pronounced today than ever before.

Google’s new IP Protection solution is a potential fix that redirects 3rd-party traffic from specific domains through proxies, making users’ IP addresses invisible to those domains. It’s expected that IP Protecting will evolve alongside the ecosystem, and continue to adapt for optimum safeguarding of users from cross-site tracking and adding additional domains to the proxied traffic. IP address will be anonymized for qualifying traffic.

To start with this will be an opt-in feature, but it’s expected that most users will readily activate it when made aware, and their reasoning being that most people will want to have better control over their privacy and letting Google monitor behavior trends. It’s expected that there will be regional considerations that need to be taken into account to start, but that eventually there some degree of uniformity in application will be realized.

Exploratory Roll Out

Initially only the domains listed will be affected in 3rd-party contexts, with the primary focus being on those believed to be tracking users. Apparently this going to be known as ‘Phase 0’ and during it Google will be proxying requests only to its own domains and via a proprietary proxy. The understanding is that this approach will help Google test the system’s infrastructure and better define domain lists.

To start with users logged into Google Chrome and with US-based IPs will be the only ones who can access these proxies, but what goes down South usually goes up North here before long. As a safety feature that may only be temporary, a Google-operated authentication server will distribute access tokens to the proxy and each user will have a quota set for them.

Google also plans to adopt a 2-hop proxy system to increase privacy further, with a 2nd proxy run by an external CDN. The advantage of this will be that neither proxy can see both the client IP address and the destination support chaining of proxies. Google plans on assigning IP addresses to proxy connections that represent a more approximate location of a user rather than their specific location, due to the fact that many online services utilize GeoIP to determine a user’s location for offering services.

Soon-to-Arrive HBM4 Memory for Superior Bandwidth Increases

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Soon-to-Arrive HBM4 Memory for Superior Bandwidth Increases

This is the time of year when people start thinking they just can’t get enough sunshine, but it’s natural to feel that way when the days get shorter and the weather tends to be darker and drearier. But nonetheless it’s an incredible free resource that contributes to our overall well-being in so many ways, and there’s people with seasonal affective disorder who actually become sick due to a lack of rays.

Now it may seem strange that we’d be talking about sunshine in a discussion of memory, bandwidth and anything tied into the way we are collectively utilizing digital technologies. But here’s the connection; we may be able to get by with shorter and darker days because we know eventually spring will come around again. But when it comes to bandwidth and the lack of it slowing down our movements online there’s no reprieve coming and there’s also a lot of the concept of induced demand too.

So building more and wider free ways to accommodate traffic never works, but with bandwidth there are real tangible benefits to expanding, improving, and optimizing memory capacities. What’s new isn’t new for very long here, but these advances are the kinds of stuff that will appeal to any good Canadian web hosting provider and that’s true for us here at 4GoodHosting too. For that reason the coming advent of HBM4 memory is definitely a blog-worthy topic, and so that’s where we’re going for this week.

Businessman pressing virtual button in quantum computing concept

Fast Data Transfer Rates

High-bandwidth memory (HBM) is much more considerable today than it was 10 years ago even, and the way it has supercharged data transfer rates is something we’ve all benefited from. Much more in the way of features has come along with it too, and it seems that the best is yet to come with HBM memory and courtesy of the super digitally-savvy developers at Samsung.

The new HBM4 memory is expected to become available to consumers through standard product fare by next year (2024) and will feature a 2048-bit interface per stack that is 2x as wide as HBM3’s 1024-bit. This superior new memory is going to feature technologies optimized for high thermal properties in development, such as non-conductive film assembly and hybrid copper bonding.

This increase in interface width from 1024-bit per stack to 2048-bit per stack will likely constitute the biggest change in HBM memory technology ever seen. 1024-bit interfaces have been the norm for HBM stacks since 2015, and so over the course of 8 years many people have become accustomed to limitations created by them. This coming doubling up of capacity is going to be a treat for many of them as they make themselves newly accustomed to it.

Per-stack capacities of between 32GB and 64GB and peak bandwidth of 2 TB/s per stack or higher are going to facilitate major differences in operability right across the board. Let’s make it clear though that to build a 64GB stack you will need a 16-Hi stack with 32GB memory devices. To date nothing even close to that has been developed though, so it looks like such dense stacks will only hit the market alongside the introduction of HBM4.

Some TBD

All this rosy outlook may need to be tempered somewhat as we still don’t know whether memory makers will be able to take those ~9 GT/s data transfer rates supported by HBM3E stacks for HBM4 stacks with a 2048-bit interface and make them stick. But the belief is that with some trial and error over the next 6 months to a year they will and the increase in bus width will double peak bandwidth from 1.15 TB/s per stack to 2.30 TB/s per stack.

That’s power, space and flexibility in one tidy package, but we also need to be looking at how widening of a per-stack memory interface will affect the number of stacks processors and interposers can handle. We need to take today’s massive processors into account with relation to the implementation of new and superior memory technologies.

Nvidia’s H100 is a good example, and its support of six 1024-bit wide HBM3/HBM3E doesn’t go so well when its operating with a massive 6144-bit wide interface. However, if the interface of a single KGSD increases to 2048 bits then the question becomes do processor developers keep using the same number of HBM4 stacks, or do they need to find ways of reducing them will hopefully still maintaining high-performance standards.

All this said, HBM4 memory looks like it’s going to be a fantastic add, even though implementation of it still has a few building blocks that have yet to be put in place.

Future of Access Control Tech Dependent on Cloud-Based Solutions

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Profound developments in digital technology over the last 10+ years have made it so that there’s more than one means of doing something 9 times out of 10. As it relates to being able to access and utilize data that’s been hugely beneficial, but with greater means of whatever it may be comes greater risk of that accessibility being abused by those who don’t have legit intentions when it comes to how that data and / or resources are utilized.

It is not really physical access control that’s at issue here when it comes to security risks associated with all of this, and instead it’s much more related to logical access controls. The difference between the two is that logical access is primarily for access to a digital space of some sort, and so it makes sense that any and all cybersecurity risks that are inherently increased with digital access controls are going to bee seen in that logical access space. Examples can be passwords to access files on a shared server, or biometric credentials to access certain features on corporate networks.

As we all know there’s no going back when it comes to tech progress, and part of being a quality Canadian web hosting provider is seeing, understanding, and being responsive to changing realities that are occurring as technology makes resources accessible is a part of being accountable to those who trust us with their web hosting. Some people won’t have any need to take so much of an interest in it, but others will and we feel it’s helpful to be informative where we can be.

We’ve also seen how cloud computing has become so integral in every aspect of modern computing and with ecommerce very much tied into tit. What we’re seeing now is how access control tech is increasingly dependent on cloud-based solutions, and there’s plenty of good reasons for that It’s what we’ll look at with this blog entry.

Progressively Less Secure

Developing and implementing managed access control systems continues to be an aspect of physical security that is of paramount importance for most modern organizations. There are reports indicating the global access control and authentication market is growing at cumulative annual rate of 11.4% and should reach a total market size of $37.2 billion by 2032.

The relevance of this is based on the way physical access control systems continue to be utilized by organizations of all sizes, with estimates putting 41% of businesses operating physical access control technology believing their systems meet or exceed necessary functional requirements.

But these days several contributing factors are detracting from the efficacy of some installed physical access systems. There is an estimated 38% increase in global cyberattacks that pose significant threats to security systems, and many businesses may feel their systems need updating to incorporate more touchless access solutions in the wake of the pandemic.

In response to all this there have been continued developments in the field of cloud-based access control technology that aim to address the growth of more pressing security concerns. Integrated systems can now provide security teams with automated responses, predictive analysis features and remote-access functionality. But why is it that cloud-based solutions are so integral to the future of access control tech for modern businesses?

Flexibility & Authority

Cloud-based security management platforms enable admins to configure and adjust active systems much more quickly and from remote locations using any secure smart device. One of the biggest pluses is this lets teams to immediately respond to detected anomalies and revoke live permissions if necessary. They can also view live data feeds pertaining to connected devices to better understand unfolding incidents.

Organizations with a cloud-based access control solutions enjoy so much more in the way of flexibility and authority over the management of physical security responses and there are significant benefits to cloud-based access control. For starters they have the option of hosting the management of access control solutions within cloud servers, security and IT teams to extend the functionality of existing hardware, and extending it far beyond the limitations of a segregated system.

This means access control devices can be informed by data from additional systems to measurably improve the efficacy of incident responses, along with much more far-reaching customization. It will also prevent unauthorized access to private properties by limiting entry only to persons carrying verified credentials. This will be dependent on modern access control systems being designed to provide users with a convenient way to enter facilities though.

Cloud-based access control solutions are well equipped to mitigate these concerns, and they do it by enabling security and IT teams to view live access logs and adjust active hardware remotely. This means issues regarding suspected faults can be seen to without delay and admins can grant access to guests and visitors remotely. The biggest advantage to this is contractors and interviewees can be managed appropriately.

The last big advantage we’ll highlight here is how cloud-based security cameras equipped with AI data analytics software can be connected to access readers via a wider web-based management platform. When cameras are able to intelligently detect suspicious events and correctly identify them and their nature then access control locks can be automatically engaged and security teams can be notified remotely.

Cloud-based access control systems will also be set to receive significant data security and maintenance benefits when they are hosted on cloud servers. Identifiable user data is then made available to teams when needed and smart automatic backups will minimize the risk of data loss.

Protecting Inboxes from Domain Name Spoofing

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Not everyone has the same vocation, but some of us have ones where we’ve been referred to as ‘white collar’ types who are in an office 9 to 5 Monday to Friday. For us it’s normal to need to go through a long list of unopened emails every morning, and if you’re more of a blue collar than white type of person then you can be thankful you don’t need to do that. But that’s neither here nor there with what we’re going to discuss for our blog entry here this week.

Email may have had the soundest of beginnings, and the value it has had in allowing speedy yet detailed interpersonal communications has been invaluable. But these days nearly everything has the potential to be corrupted to some extent and by whatever means, and your inbox is the farthest thing from being immune to that. If you’re on of the office guys or gals we talked about to begin with, you may have already had to deal with domain name spoofing. What’s also like is that you’ve received a company-wide email warning you to be on the lookout for it.

99+% of customers for every good Canadian web hosting provider is going to have an inbox of their own, and many of them may be the same hotbed of activity and incoming emails in the same way it is for us. Domain name spoofing is one of the more pronounced risks where recipients can be fooled into greenlighting scams and other types of nefarious digital activity, so let’s use this entry to talk about what you can do to keep yourself safe from it.

What is Display Name Spoofing?

Mail display name spoofing involves cybercriminals impersonating others and manipulating the sender’s display name so that the email appears to come from a trusted source. In worst-case scenarios – and they unfortunately work out this way often – recipients then open the mail and possibly end up clicking on malicious links, or revealing sensitive information.

Getting into more specifics, this is the way it works and what you’ll probably quickly come to see is that display name spoofing isn’t difficult to do. The perps will first identify a target, and the best ones for them are organizations or individuals with a level of trustworthiness or a reputation that’s ripe for exploitation. From there an email message is crafted and they make every effort to make it seems genuine and containing a message that will see legitimate to the recipient.

There are even means by which they can use the same logos and formatting that you’d see in an email coming from that specific source, and the best ones do really well in imitating the same the type of language that would be used. Often times with even the same type of syntax structures.

But the most essential part of this construction is in the way the email address isn’t changed, while the sender’s display name is. And quite often the change is very small and subtle and you would need to look at it with more than just a glance to detect an inaccuracy. What the attacker does is change the sender’s display name to match that of the trusted source.

The Sending

Once the email has been built then it is sent to the target, and the problem is in the fact that the recipient sees only the spoofed display name and not the actual email address. If their guard is down and / or they’re not paying close attention, they may open the email and then interact with in the same way the spoofer wants.

It’s common to incorporate a deceptive subject line too, and quite often they will use one that instills urgency or curiosity, encouraging the recipient to open the email. Too many people become victims here , and the reason for that is because recipients often trust emails that appear to come from familiar names or organizations. When that happens they are more likely to engage with the messages.

You don’t even need a lot of skill or proficiency to be able to do this, and that may also be a part of why domain name spoofing is occurring a lot more frequently these days.

How to Protect Yourself

The first thing you can do is look at the email addresses much more carefully to verify them. Always check the sender’s full email address, and this means not looking at only the display name. If it is unrecognizable or is oddly put together and doesn’t ‘look’ right, don’t open the email and if you’re convinced it is fraudulent you should block the sender and report it to your IT team if you are in an office workplace environment.

It’s also advisable to be skeptical of emails that demand immediate action or contain urgent requests. This is a way that the senders try to trick you into making hasty decisions. You should also hover over links to get a visual of where you’re going to be redirected to. If the URL looks suspicious, don’t do it.

Email authentication protocols like SPF (Sender Policy Framework) and DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail) are also recommended to avoid domain name spoofing. Enabling Multi-Factor Authentication is advisable too as it adds an extra layer of security to your email account, and the attackers will have more difficulty gaining access to it.

AI Technology Moving to Meet and Detect Increasing Number of Phishing Scams

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Some people are already suggesting that we may have opened something of a Pandora’s box by embracing Artificial Intelligence and AI technologies like ChatGPT in the way that we have. Most will counter that by saying you can’t stop progress, and so if we’re beginning to spin into the black hole then so be it. We won’t wager an opinion on that, but like most we do know that as of now there’s a whole lot to like and look forward to with the implementation and utilization of AI.

These days one of the cyber security areas where it’s doing good and much-needed work is in the detection and prevention of phishing scams. Most of us will know McAfee as being one of the most well-known and renowned antivirus software suites.

Most will also know that the software’s creator – Mr. John McAfee – was truly a man’s man and during his time here he lived a life that was very admirable and he did a lot of good. He will continue to be someone for young men to look up to and emulate as they grow into adulthood, and that’s exactly what John would have wanted. The world needs more people like him, that is for sure.

All that aside, this talk about significant progress into phishing scam detection and prevention is going to be a topic of interest for us here at 4GoodHosting in the same way it would be for any good Canadian web hosting provider. Let’s take this week’s entry here to look at the growing scope of the problem and how new tech developments powered by AI are helping to counter growing threats.

Tricked Into

Phishing scams have been occurring for decades, but in more recent years have evolved to become increasingly sophisticated. A phishing attack will involve people being ‘tricked’ into providing sensitive information like login credentials, credit card numbers or other personal data. Along with all the technological advances go similar advances with the tools and techniques scammers utilize to conduct their attacks.

So while AI is part of the cure, it’s also part of the disease figuratively speaking. AI’s fast rise has created new opportunities for scammers to conduct more effective and targeted phishing scams, but at the same time AI can also be used to improve phishing detection and prevention techniques. Let’s start with how AI makes phishing scams stronger.

AI-Powered Phishing Scams

  1. Spear Phishing

You may have snorkeled back to the boat with a Dorado for dinner, but in the digital world spear phishing is a highly targeted form of phishing that involves sending personalized messages to specific individuals or groups. AI increases the power and reach of them by automating the process of collecting information about a target. Social media activity, online behavior and personal interests etc. all gleaned to craft a highly personalized message that is more likely to persuade the person to make the fateful click or whatever it may be.

  1. Deepfakes

Deepfakes are realistic videos or images created with AI and then used to impersonate someone else. Scammers can use deepfakes to create videos or images of executives, celebrities, chumps or other high-profile individuals and entirely convincing the person that they’re communicating with a legitimate source.

  1. Chatbots

AI-powered chatbots are another great and very welcome utility for scammers. They are capable of engaging with a lot of targets at one time and reaching more targets than traditional phishing methods would be able to. Chatbots may also initiate conversations with people and convince them into providing sensitive information or click on malicious links.

Guarded Against

Alright, to the other side of the coin now; what can AI developments do to better detect phishing scams and put a target on them for unsuspecting users? Here it is.

  1. Machine Learning

Training machine learning algorithms to identify phishing emails is being turned into a valuable weapon against phishing scam initiators. They are able to analyze various features like a sender’s email address, the content of the email, and the nature of any embedded links or attachments they’re including in whatever it is. They can also analyze user behavior and identify anomalies that could point to a phishing attack being set up.

  1. Natural Language Processing (NLP)

NLP can be used to analyze the content of emails and pinpoint patterns or keywords that are known telltale signs of phishing emails. NLP algorithms analyze the language used in phishing emails to identify common patterns and determine if they are genuine or fake. They are also focusing on cross-channel communications across multiple channels to determine if they are part of any phishing attack.

  1. User Behavior Analysis

Existing security systems can analyze patterns in user behavior much more intelligently with real focus and insight when backed by an AI. It can be used to monitor user login, link click, attachment download and email reply activity to identify anomalies that may indicate a phishing attempt. By monitoring user behavior, security systems are so much better with identifying and respond to phishing scams to prevent data breaches, financial losses and identity theft.