Security and Passwords


General Security
If you normally go home and leave the office wide open then don't bother reading further.  There has been more than enough written about keeping computer systems secure without me rabbiting on, other than to say that you are putting a part or all of your business into this system.  It is in your own interest to ensure that only authorised people have access to your system and the data in it is kept secure.

This can be achieved by limiting access to the computer physically and by the judicious use of passwords.  Passwords must be kept secure which means not using obvious things like your bookie's or mistress's/toy boy's name, birthdays etc.  Nor should they be written down and left in the drawer next to the computer or in your diary.  They must also be changed periodically to be effective.  This could be weekly, monthly, or just when there is a staff change.

The most important data security measure is undoubtedly backing up your system.  But the back-ups must be taken off-site or stored in a fireproof safe.  See Back up and Restore for a fuller discussion.

Having unlimited access to the Internet has its blessings and disadvantages.  Email is a great tool but opens the door to introducing "viruses" to your system.  Similarly downloading information from the Internet can also bring its own woes.  There is no blanket answer to this problem but if you restrict any downloading to well-known or trusted sites you are less likely to get into trouble.

All users should have a software or hardware firewall which stops unauthorised sites accessing your computer and can be used to stop your computer making unauthorised access to the internet.

Games provide staff, including you, with a complete time waster.  They are absolute dynamite for introducing viruses and in my opinion have no place on a business computer.  But they are not the only source of viruses, or is it virae.

It is well worth investing in virus checking software but it must be updated regularly.  It can only find and fix viruses that it knows about and there are sufficient sick people out there dreaming up new viruses to make regular updating and checking a necessity.  Regularly does not mean once a month, rather daily or at minimum once a week.  If you hear of any new virus get an update immediately.

Some organisations have "immediate dismissal" clauses in their employment contracts for anyone placing unauthorised software on their computers irrespective of  whether it was copied from another machine, by network connection or downloading from the Internet.

Passwords provide a means of restricting access to all or parts of your computer system.  The level of security than can be provided by passwords are, to a large degree, dependent upon the operating system in use.  Unix based systems can be made very secure.  Windows based systems are often poorly set up and have little or no security at all.  This means your business is at risk.

To be effective passwords must be kept secure and changed periodically.  This could be weekly, monthly, or just when there is any staff change.

Apart from those system based passwords there are two passwords associated with the Aspect Property Manager.  The simplest is the User Password which you maintain.  The second is the Aspect Property Manager System Password which is controlled by Aspect Systems.

User Password
In addition to the standard Windows logon and screen saver passwords you can control access to the Aspect Property Manager by requiring a password to be entered when the Aspect Property Manager is started from Windows.  This is achieved by checking the User Password Reqd box on the Company Details screen and entering a password in a pop up window.  You may change or remove the password by clicking the User Password button.

System Password
When the Aspect Property Manager is first installed it provides you with an operational system that allows you to properly evaluate the system.  There are restrictions on the number of pages that will print and all printed material will be overprinted with a "Trial Version" message.  Once you decide to register the Aspect Property Manager you will be given a password which you enter into the system by clicking the Password button.  This opens the system up and removes the printed message.