The European Union’s executive arm, the European Commission, is forcing smartphone and electronic makers like Apple to make their devices USB-C compatible.

A step forward in Europe’s “Common Charger” campaign to eliminate the varying wires and ports across all devices.

We will continue to provide updates as they are available, please be sure to contact us with any questions.

USB-C Charging Port on a Laptop (Credit: BenQ Knowledge Center)

Apple users are now able to scan and upload their Maryland driver’s license or state ID to their Apple Wallet, accessible on an iPhone or Apple Watch. Through a verification process with Face ID and photo recognition, your license is approved by the state and uploaded to your device.

(Credit: MDoT)

Maryland is only the second state after Arizona to have this technology approved for use, but it is still not widely accepted. Only certain Transportation Security Administration (TSA) checkpoints at airports currently accept the Mobile ID.

Maryland’s Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) hopes that over time, all businesses and government entities will accept this form of identification, as the technology becomes more available and familiarized. You will hold your device up to a reader, and that will scan and process your ID and information to allow the user to not need a physical license. 

Take a look at this video from Maryland Department of Transportation on how to set-up and add your Mobile ID to your Apple Wallet:

Epoch will continue to provide updates on this as more information becomes available. Please contact us with any questions!

Password-Only Authentication

As password-only sign-in has become a prominent security threat, new defenses such as Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), Password Managers, Facial Recognition, etc. have come around to increase user security.

But as these security requirements and standards vary depending on the specific site or application, remembering your password and how to sign-in for each of those sites may become too complex, and still not as secure as it needs to be.

How passwordless sign-in would work
 image: FIDO Alliance

Passwordless Authentication

You may be accustomed to using your mobile phone, or computer to sign into a smart TV or other device to watch live TV, or a streaming service. This same kind of software will be used to sign into different websites and applications, solely using your phone.

An application on your phone will contain a specific passkey that will allow access to all of these sites, similar to MFA and Facial Recognition for unique user-specific access across all Internet browsers.

The goal for Microsoft, Apple, and Google is eventually to entirely get rid of passwords, which will in turn provide increased security by eliminating the potential for users passwords to be exploited.

These changes are set to come into play over the course of the next year, according to Apple.

EPOCH always suggests enabling MFA whenever possible. Please contact us with any questions.

Be sure to check with your Managed Service Provider before installing the update if it is available to you. Epoch does not recommend upgrading until you verify all hardware and software is supported. Typically, software developers have a lag between the initial releases, and when devices are actually compatible. Take a look at the system requirements for Windows 11. Some devices may not be compatible with the new software. 

Microsoft announced Windows 11 will be available ahead of schedule, with the initial release now on October 5th. The original plan saw this release in early 2022. It will be a phased release, beginning with the newer devices first.

“If you have a Windows 10 PC that’s eligible for the upgrade, Windows Update will let you know when it’s available.” Microsoft said in their blog post, highlighting the release. To manually check if you have the update for your device you can go to Settings>Windows Update>Check for updates.

Please reach out with any questions.

Channel Futures MSP 501 logo with purple lettering and logo

Epoch, Inc. has been named as one of the world’s premier managed service providers in the prestigious 2021 Channel Futures MSP 501 rankings. This is the first year Epoch has applied for this award.

“We’re truly honored and excited to be named to this prestigious list in our first year applying,” said Chris Riismandel, Owner of Epoch, Inc. “This award shows the progress we are making, and is a fantastic achievement and reward for all of our team’s hard work over the past years. We cannot wait to see our continued growth.

Epoch is one of the top 501 MSPs identified by Channel Futures—Tech Industry’s Most Prestigious List of Global Managed Service Providers

About Channel Futures MSP 501

For the past 15 years, MSPs from around the globe have submitted applications to be included on this prestigious and definitive listing. The Channel Futures MSP 501 survey examines organizational performance based on annual sales, recurring revenue, profit margins, revenue mix, growth opportunities, innovation, technology solutions supported, and company and customer demographics. Managed services providers that qualify for the list must pass a rigorous review conducted by the research team and editors of Channel Futures that rank applicants using a unique methodology that weighs financial performance according to long-term health and viability, commitment to recurring revenue and operational efficiency.

This year’s list attracted a record number of applicants and was one of the most competitive in the survey’s history. Winners are being recognized on the Channel Futures website and will be honored at a special ceremony at the MSP Summit held Nov. 1-2 in Las Vegas as part of the Channel Partners Conf. & Expo.

Since its inception, the MSP 501 has evolved from a competitive ranking into a vibrant group of innovators focused on high levels of customer satisfaction at small, medium, and large organizations in public and private sectors. Today, many of their services and technology offerings focus on growing customer needs in the areas of cloud, security, collaboration, and support of hybrid work forces.

“The 2021 Channel Futures MSP 501 winners are the highest-performing and most innovative IT providers in the industry today. They stand head and shoulders above the competition,” said Robert DeMarzo, vice president of content for the Channel Futures and Channel Partners Conference & Expo division of Informa Tech Channels.

The complete 2021 MSP 501 list is available on Channel Futures’ website.