The Top 10 tech stories of 2014

Before we look ahead to next year’s challenges and promising developments, let’s take a look back at 2014’s biggest headlines.

There was plenty of bad new to go around in 2014, from the rise of ransomware to the Sony Pictures hack that brought an entire company to its knees and led many to question what they would do if they were faced with threats coming from Internet attacks.

But there was good news, also. It was a year that saw many major developments in tech and for the most part, good hiring news.

So let’s revisit the stories you read most in 2014, starting with number 10 and working our way to the most popular story of the year.

10. Apple passwords hacked

Australian iPhone users had a rude awakening when they found themselves locked out of their devices due to a ransom attack. It was linked to Apple ID credentials being stolen and came with the urgent message to change passwords immediately.

9. BYOD: A security nightmare, or IT’s dream come true?

BYOD remained a popular topic this year. It makes its first appearance with this article outlining the promises and potential downfalls of the service.

8. The 5 fundamentals of network security

This primer outlines the most important five steps to take when protecting your network (plus five bonus tips that you need in order to stay safe from attack).

7. ‘Password’ is no longer the most common password

IT pros might have been relieved that users finally started wising up. This January, for the first time ‘password’ was eclipsed as the most common password. The problem? It only slipped to No. 2 on the list, and it was replaced by the equally weak ‘123456.’ (Runners up included ‘iloveyou’ and ‘qwerty.’)

6. 10 keys for a BYOD policy that won’t get you sued

BYOD is a troubling legal area. By the very definition, you’re dealing with someone else’s property and telling them what they can or can’t do with it. Little wonder then that these recommendations for avoiding legal trouble caught many readers’ attention.

5. Sample password policy template

If you’re looking to avoid having everyone pick ‘123456’ or ‘password’ to protect your data, the first line of defense is a good password policy. That’s why we made a sample guide that IT pros could build off for their own users.

4. BYOD policy template (updated for 2014)

We revisited and revised our last BYOD policy guideline based on popular request, and readers responded in a big way. Feel free to borrow ours as a guide and update it so it reflects your companies rules and regulations. Don’t forget: Even if you don’t support mobile devices, it’s important to reflect that in writing.

3. Microsoft extends Windows 8.1 deadline

Most companies thought they were done with Microsoft’s end-of-life deadlines when Windows XP went out of support this fall. But then came the unwelcome news that they would need to upgrade to Windows 8.1 … and fast.

2. Phishing attacks to watch out for

This year remained a particularly challenging one for phishing attacks, one of the oldest tricks in the hacking arsenal. Just last month three new attacks were hitting IT hard, and plenty of users unwittingly compromised systems as a result.

1. 5 things you should never say to your boss

IT pros seemed to be keen on keeping their jobs this year, which could explain why they were so interested in avoiding these career-killing phrases. No. 1 on the list? “I told you so.” Most IT pros have wanted to say it. Many bosses have needed to hear it. But speaking it is a fast track to having a rough performance review.


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