Trending March 2024 # Cleaning Up Databases To Save Time… And Money # Suggested April 2024 # Top 8 Popular

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Before a global consulting firm integrated new software into its

5-terabyte database, the company’s IT staff spent so much time cleaning

up their information that bigger projects had to take a back seat.

IT workers at Hewitt Associates, a human resources consulting and

outsourcing company based in Lincolnshire, Il., had gotten used to

spending many tedious hours searching through their IBM Lotus Domino

servers and racking through confusing Domino logs to determine which

applications weren’t being used, costing the company lots of hard drive

space and money.

To solve this problem they recently started using DYS Analytics’ Control

Usage Investigator (CUI) software.

Now, Hewitt’s IT staff can work on other projects while the CUI program

cleans up their servers, says Scott Pitts, manager of Hewitt’s Knowledge

Management Infrastructure Group.

”(CUI) is saving us money,” says Pitts. ”We don’t need people to

baby-sit the servers anymore.”

The CUI program is DYS’ answer to an IT need to make messaging and

collaboration applications run more efficiently, says Drew Wolff, vice

president of products at DYS. He says CUI software monitors and analyzes

application usage, and traffic and performance levels throughout entire

networks, allowing organizations to determine which applications were

being used and which ones were simply wasting time and money.

Prior to adopting the CUI software, Pitts says his IT staff had to look

through Domino logs to figure out which applications and user ID’s were

no longer needed. This process was time consuming and expensive, he adds.

”It was too much to check through by hand,” says Pitts. ”The Domino

logs were hard to understand. We were not doing it efficiently.”

Matt Cain, a Domino analyst at META Group, Inc., a Stamford, Conn.-based

analyst and research firm, says the CUI software solves a business

problem created by the excessive amounts of unused Lotus Notes

applications running on Domino systems.

”A tech-savvy business person can write his own Domino applications

easily, which ends up with lots of applications going unused,” says

Cain. ”Some companies have thousands of Lotus applications with 20 to 30

percent not being used, just taking up space. This creates a liability on

the system.”

And Pitt adds that by eliminating such idle applications, the IT staff at

Hewitt was able to free up a lot of hard disc space.

”We aren’t spending money on adding new disc space to the servers

because of databases that aren’t being used,” says Pitt.

The CUI software also allows Hewitt IT staff to work on other important

projects, instead of manually searching through the servers for these

unnecessary applications.

”We used to have to do about 20 percent of this work by hand,” says

Pitts. ”If there were less than five people using a database, it was

hard to tell that when reading a log.”

DYS’ CUI is designed to solve such problems.

The Wellesley, Mass.-based provider of application performance software

released the CUI product as part of its CONTROL! family of application

performance management solutions for collaboration environments this past

January. While DYS currently offers solutions for Microsoft Exchange, IBM

Lotus Domino, IBM Instant Messaging and Web Conferencing (formerly

Sametime), and IBM Team Workplace, the CUI is used solely with IBM Lotus


”CUI provides analysis reports of what’s happening with the

collaboration of an application so IT can ‘efficientize’ this (process),

reduce the cost of ownership and increase the quality of service,” says


He also notes that beside its database-clean-up capabilities, CUI also

picks out which user profiles are not needed. Employees frequently come

and go in organizations for a variety of reasons. CUI determines when an

employee has left the company, or is on a leave of absence.

”Instead of having to go out and buy new user licences from platform

vendors, IT can recycle or retire the ID for the next employee,” says

Wolff. ”This also saves on maintenance fees.”

Wolff also says CUI’s Application Rationalization abilities are aimed at

organizations with remote offices. The software determines which

applications should be placed on the remote offices’ networks, as well as

where it’s not efficient to install them.

Pitts says Hewitt has about 87 worldwide remote offices, and about 300

global Domino servers, with more than 20,000 desktops accessing Domino

applications. He says these networks are much easier to monitor with the

CUI software.

”We get monthly reports which help us keep track of what is being

replicated… and what replicated data is really needed,” says Pitts.

”CUI goes through and cleans up everything for us.”

Wolff adds the CUI software has a ”work flow process” designed to

assure that databases aren’t deleted before they need to be. A company

may only need an application at the end of the year, or a user ID may

simply be unused while the employee is out on a leave-of-absence. CUI is

designed to detect these special situations.

”As the company grows, people put stuff on the databases and it grows,”

says Pitts. ”Usually if you need to add (an application), you can delete

one too.”

CUI has security benefits, as well. The software looks at who is using

which database and which users are trying to gain access to certain

information, as well as who shouldn’t be accessing a database, Wolff


You're reading Cleaning Up Databases To Save Time… And Money

Outsourcing: Save Money, Save The World

OK, so you might not save the entire world simply by outsourcing, but by using Serebra Connect, an online outsourcing platform, you can auction tasks to skilled freelancers in developing nations – and make a huge difference in their lives. What’s in it for you? Substantial savings – which makes a huge difference in your business.

Serebra Connect is part of Serebra Learning Corporation, an e-learning company that, among other things, provides technology-training solutions over the Internet. Ted Moorhouse, the company’s CEO, believes that Serebra Connect offers tremendous benefits to small businesses while providing life-changing possibilities to many people throughout the world.

Outsourcing frees up time and lets small business owners focus on growing the business, and it increases productivity. Using Serebra Connect, Moorhouse believes, lets socially responsible small business owners contribute to global economic development.

The eBay for Services

Here’s how it works. If you have a job that needs doing – say Web design or a PowerPoint presentation (Serebra Connect offers more than 200 task categories), you can post the job in the site’s marketplace – for free – through the Post-a-Task Wizard.

Freelancers from anywhere in the world (not just developing nations) can browse the marketplace for jobs that match their particular skill set (they can also take online courses from Serebra to improve skills and their ranking). The Ask a Question forum lets them correspond with buyers to better understand a job’s requirements.

You browse the bids you receive from the various freelancers, and you can view individual profiles, education and feedback to help make the decision. Once you’ve chosen a particular freelancer and agreed to a deadline and fee, the money goes into an escrow account – ConnectPay – held by Serebra Connect, thus eliminating risk for both parties.

The freelancer does the work and submits it for approval. Both parties use their individual My Connect collaboration space and tools to exchange files, send messages, make corrections and adjustments to the work as needed and track the project’s progress.

When the buyer marks the work as complete, Serebra releases the fee – to the seller in the form of a MasterCard debit card that can be used anywhere in the world. The seller pays a percentage of the fee – Moorhouse says it’s around 13 percent to Serebra Connect. And, as with eBay, both buyers and sellers leave feedback for each other.

Moorhouse says Serebra Connect is a win-win situation for buyers and sellers alike. Here’s how the company breaks down the outsourcing benefits for both groups:

Buyer Benefits

No membership or service fees to post unlimited tasks

Payment to the seller is only released after the buyer marks the task as complete

Save time

Save money

Increase productivity

Provide income to individuals and the economies of developing nations

Seller Benefits

Join the global economy and earn income with your skills

Access affordable e-learning courses to learn new skills to earn more income

No membership fees and unlimited free bids

Receive recognition for courses completed and new skills learned

Bid on tasks quickly and easily

Use your own personal online workspace

Work from home

Growing a Global Economy

Moorhouse laid out a scenario that describes how Serebra Connect can create positive, economic change. According to chúng tôi the average salary for a teacher in the Philippines ranges from 11,000 – 15,000 pesos annually, which translates to approximately $22 – $30 U.S. per month.

Take one small business owner in New York who needs a PowerPoint presentation, but lacks the time and/or skills to do it in-house. That task could cost her as much as $1,000. Instead, she goes to Serebra Connect and receives a bid from that teacher in the Philippines for $80 (all prices in U.S. dollars).

“That’s big savings for that small business owner, and even bigger income for the teacher – almost four times the average monthly income,” said Moorhouse. “People don’t just need education,” he said. “They need jobs and income.”

This article was first published on chúng tôi

Credit Card Tips And Tricks: How To Save Money

With so many perks and incentives available, it’s understandable why individuals would be sucked into spending and using their cards for purposes other than what they were meant for. This may be harmful to both your finances and the business as a whole. In a society where people are clamoring for freebies, giving away profits frequently results in worse company practices. The suggestions in the following article will help you save money and keep your credit card balance within acceptable limits.

What is A Credit Card?

Using a credit card is a means to obtain “credit” or a loan from a bank. The revolving line of credit is the official term. It’s a credit card with a predefined borrowing limit that you may access at any time. The credit limit is determined at the time of application. If your credit card is approved, you can use it to make purchases online or in person without having to pay with cash.

Your balance increases each time you use a credit card to make a purchase. The money above your minimum payment, if you don’t pay off your debt in full each month, goes towards interest and fees. This might make it challenging to pay the whole sum each month and difficult to buy products on time.

You might wish to apply for a personal loan instead if you believe that using a credit card is not for you but you want additional dollars for an emergency. You have a variety of online loan options to choose from, some of which have interest rates that are significantly lower than those on credit cards.

How do Credit Cards Work? Interest Rates

The appropriate interest rate will be disclosed to you when you apply for a credit card. You must pay this annual fee on any unpaid balance that is not settled by the due date, regardless of how much it is. You’ll pay a different amount in interest each month. The amount you spend, the amount you repay, and the timing of the repayment all affect it. For instance, if the interest rate is 18% per year and your amount is $100, you will be charged 18% per year of $100, or around $1.50 per month.

Also read:

Top 10 Programming Languages for Kids to learn

Credit Limit

You can only borrow up to your credit limit. When you apply for a credit card, you have the option of setting your credit limit or allowing the bank to do so based on the details you provided on your financial situation. The minimum card limit that the bank will set will vary depending on the kind of card you apply for.

Interest-Free Periods

The majority of credit cards provide “up-to-44 days” or “up-to-55 days” of interest-free repayment on purchases. This implies that interest on amounts you owe doesn’t start to accumulate until the statement due date.

Rather than on the day you make a transaction, interest-free periods often begin on the first day of your payment cycle. For instance, if your credit card has a 44-day interest-free grace period, you have 44 days from the day of your statement to make full payment of the closing balance. Similarly, if your account shows an interest-free days payment, you must make this complete payment. You will then be assessed interest.


Like any loan, you must repay a credit card bill once you have it. Every month, your bank will give you statements that include the total amount you have loaned, any repayments you have made, the interest rate, any accumulated interest or fees, and the minimum payment due.

Make sure you pay the closing sum in full by the deadline each month to avoid paying interest. You must pay at least the minimum payment amount indicated on your statement if you don’t pay the closing debt in full. You can be charged late fees or missed payment costs if this sum isn’t paid by the deadline.


Also read:

Best CRM software for 2023

Balance Transfer and Cash Advances

Credit Card Tips & Tricks That Could Help Your Credit Health

Pay off your credit card balance every month. Pay off your credit card debt in full at the end of each billing cycle to avoid paying interest on purchases made with it. If you can resist the need to spend more than you can afford to in any given month, you may profit from using a credit card without being charged interest.

Use your credit card for needs, not wants. It’s important to use credit cards responsibly. Spending money carelessly might result in debt. In an emergency, such as when a cell phone bill is due before your next paycheck, credit cards can be utilized. Use the credit card as a short-term loan to yourself, and then pay it off as quickly as you can to reduce or completely prevent interest rates.

Never miss a payment. Even if the minimum payment is all you can afford, pay your bills each month. Missing a credit card payment might hurt your credit report, pay a late charge, and pay penalty interest rates.

Use your credit card as a budgeting tool. Try using a credit card as a budgeting tool if you’re convinced you can use one responsibly and pay the debt in full each month. You can easily calculate your monthly spending by using your credit card for all of your purchases. Naturally, you should only do this if you are certain of your ability to settle the sum each month. Never charge more on your card than you have in your bank account to prevent your credit card spending from getting out of control.

Use a rewards credit card. It makes sense to use a credit card that lets you earn rewards if you use it for the majority or all of your expenditures. You may save money on interest payments as well as gain incentives like money, airline miles, or shopping points.

Reduce your credit card limit. Sometimes, our credit card limitations are far more than we need. Have you ever used up all of your allotment? If not, think about lowering them. Because banks will base your payments on the card’s limit rather than the balance, it will reduce the number of issues you may get yourself into and increase your borrowing ability. Additionally, regularly check your credit to determine how much remaining credit you have.

Don’t carry your card around with you. Use your credit card only for purchases you are positive you will make and avoid keeping it in your wallet or handbag. This removes the temptation to use it each time you wrongly assume you need it but don’t. You should take precautions since your credit cards might be misplaced or stolen.

Use a written budget. You shouldn’t use credit cards to pay for items you want but haven’t budgeted for. Use the credit card as a tool inside that budget to help you stay within it after creating a detailed, written budget that outlines how much you should spend in each category.

The Bottom Line

The decision to use a credit card ultimately comes down to personal preference. Choose the approach that will fit your lifestyle the best and provide you with the greatest assurance that you are still maintaining your financial obligation. The basic rule of thumb is that you should always pay your balance in full by the due date. Credit cards can be a convenient tool for spending and paying, but you’ll save yourself a world of trouble down the road if you avoid using them as the only method of spending and paying. And if you like your credit card perks, don’t worry—you don’t have to give them up. Just tone things down a bit, and you’ll have it made.

Marjorie Hajim

Marjorie Hajim is the SEO Manager for Friendly Finance. Friendly Finance is a leading loan matching service in Australia specialising in consumer finance. She loves growing businesses with a focus on their online presence and is passionate about organic growth and all things digital. She has written articles for FinanceBuzz, Futuramo, FinancedBlog, & many more!

Ai In Social Media: How To Save Time And Stay Safe

Use these tips to unlock the potential of AI-powered social media tools without sacrificing safety or privacy.

AI is everywhere in social media. From post-writing tools like OwlyWriter AI, to image-creation bots like Midjourney. It seems like every day, new AI-powered tools are being released.

Still, while social media AI tools are becoming commonplace, there are a lot of unknowns when it comes to AI safety, security, and privacy. As we embrace AI social media, it’s important to stay mindful of the risks and take steps to protect both yourself and your brand.

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What is AI in social media?

AI in social media refers to artificial intelligence tools and services designed to help users save time, increase engagement, and stand out on social media platforms.

AI tools can be used for a wide range of tasks, such as:

automating post writing

creating and editing images and videos

optimizing posting schedules

managing conversations with customers and followers

analyzing data about user preferences or behavior

… and more.

Watch this quick video to see how we review 7 AI tools for social media:

How AI can be used in social media

No dream is too big when it comes to AI in social media. With the right tools and resources, you can unlock a wealth of data and insights about your audience, creating more personalized experiences that convert into sales.

Here are some of the most common uses for AI in social media.

1. Caption writing

Gone are the days of cliché, over-used captions. Today, AI-driven caption writers like Hootsuite’s OwlyWriter AI can generate creative, compelling captions in a fraction of the time. See how it works in the video below.

Simply enter your prompt, URL, or hashtag, and your AI caption writer will whip up a captivating caption that fits the tone and voice you specify.

OwlyWriter AI also lets you repurpose top-performing posts, generate captions from blog posts and other content sources, and create captions for specific holidays.

Try it free in Hootsuite

2. Image creation

Content sourcing is one of the biggest bottlenecks for marketers and social media managers. You have to find and create visuals that fit your brand aesthetic, then repurpose them for each platform.

AI image creation bots like Midjourney, Dall-E, and DreamStudio, on the other hand, can help you create custom, branded visuals in a flash.

All you need is an idea, and these bots will turn it into a stunning image. For example, Midjourney can create custom images from photos, video clips, GIFs, text overlays, illustrations, and more–all without any manual design work.

Sometimes, it’s hard to know exactly what content will resonate with your audience. Sure, you can spend time testing out different strategies and use analytics to see what’s working — but that can take up a lot of time.

AI-powered tools like Brandwatch and Hootsuite Insights can help you get deep insights into your target audience’s thoughts and feelings.

You can see real-time sentiment analysis, so you know which topics to engage with and which to ignore. You can also see who the influencers are in any conversation, and how to tailor your content for maximum engagement.

Plus, automatically monitor industry trends and your competitors’ activities, so you’re always on the frontlines of the conversation.

4. Content ideation

Stop letting your best ideas get stuck in the mud. New AI for social media content tools can help you come up with content ideas that are tailored to your target audience.

Simply enter a few keywords or topics, and the engine will generate fresh ideas for articles, blog posts, infographics, videos, and more–all based on what’s trending in your industry.

You can also use generative art tools to visualize and share your campaign ideas with your team. This is a great way to get feedback and refine your ideas before they go live.

5. Ad management

AI has long been used to optimize social media ad campaigns. From targeting the right audience to bidding strategy and budget management, AI can help you maximize your ad spend and boost your return on investment.

Benefits of AI for social media

AI is revolutionizing the way businesses interact with customers on social media. Here’s why social media AI is so important for any business that wants to stay competitive.

Save time

AI can automate mundane tasks like content creation, scheduling, customer service, and more, freeing up time for you to focus on your social media strategy and innovation.

Good AI tools can save you 8 hours every week, easy.

— Jeremy Nguyen ✍🏼 🚢 (@JeremyNguyenPhD) May 5, 2023

Deliver more personalized experiences

Social media AI tools can help you better understand your customer’s needs and preferences, so you can deliver more meaningful and relevant experiences.

— Daniel Newman (@danielnewmanUV) May 8, 2023

Boost creativity

Too many good ideas never see the light of day, whether it’s because of writer’s block or lack of resources. AI social media tools can help you generate new ideas faster, opening the door to more creative and impactful social media marketing campaigns.

Grow your reach

AI helps you monitor and learn from conversations happening across multiple platforms, so you can tailor your content for maximum engagement.

Cost savings

Tedious manual processes be gone! AI saves you time and money by eliminating manual labor costs associated with content creation and optimization for social media campaigns.

Increased accuracy

AI-driven tools can help you make more precise decisions based on data and insights. This means better targeting and higher ROI for your campaigns.

Challenges of AI for social media

Like any disruptive technology, AI in social media has its own set of challenges and potential risks. Here are a few things to consider before you dive in.


With the ability to generate and produce content more quickly comes the risk of spreading potentially misleading or false information. While AI tools can be incredibly accurate, they are also prone to making up facts, stats, and other pieces of information.

As AI and social media continue to intertwine, it’s up to users to monitor AI outputs. Always check for plagiarism before publishing AI-powered content. As well, double-check any facts or figures that the AI spits out.

Hootsuite’s Nick Martin had this to say about building an AI-powered social media strategy ethically:

“I use AI for content idea generation, brainstorming, even writing a first draft of briefs or meeting itineraries. All sorts of things. But I always make sure to use it as if someone else (someone REAL) was working with me, and then I iterate on the AI’s output to make sure it’s got the human touch to it. That’s a very important thing to note. Don’t plagiarize the AI’s first draft of work. Use it as just that, a first draft.”


AI in social media is new, which means for many companies, the jury is still out on when, where, and how it’s acceptable to use it.

Because of this, it’s important to check with your legal and compliance departments before you start using AI-generated content or giving a bot permission to interact with customers online. This will help you avoid any potential conflicts of interest or violations of regulations for your industry.

Data privacy

AI algorithms are powered by data, which can pose a security risk if left unprotected. This is especially important if you handle sensitive customer data, such as healthcare data, banking data, or other personal information.

Make sure to have a comprehensive social media policy in place before implementing any AI solutions. This will help you protect customer data from being compromised by malicious actors and ensure that your users’ privacy is respected.


Generative AI tools are only as good as the inputs their receive. Because of this, there is a risk of replicating human biases in AI-generated content.

It’s important to review AI-generated content with a critical eye. If you notice any potential biases, go back to the source material and tweak it as needed.

Additionally, always make sure your AI models adhere to the same standards of fairness and inclusion you apply to human-generated content.

Bonus: Don’t know what to post on social? Unlock +100 free social media content ideas and never worry about writer’s block again!

Legal and ethical issues

In some cases, AI can be used to target vulnerable populations, invade privacy, and manipulate user behavior. Businesses need to be aware of the potential legal implications and ethical considerations associated with AI technology.

Check out UNESCO’s Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence before launching your AI program.

6 tips for using AI for social media safely

To help ensure you’re using AI social media responsibly, here are a few tips:

1. Review and validate any AI-generated content before publishing

As we said before, AI social media tools aren’t immune to errors. And no one wants to end up with a front-page headline about a topic that’s rife with misinformation.

Source: Futurism

To protect your job and your brand, be sure to double-check any content you plan to publish.

Plagiarism-checking tools like Grammarly or Copyscape can help you avoid any unintentional copyright violations.

Source: Grammarly

Pro tip: Grammarly is included in the Hootsuite publisher, so you can automatically check spelling or grammar errors in your captions before you check them.

2. Be transparent about AI usage

AI is a new, sometimes frightening topic for those unfamiliar with it. That’s why some brands choose to explain to their customers how they’re using AI so they know what to expect when engaging with their brand online.

If you’re using AI to generate captions, images, hashtags, or other content, you may choose to be honest about it when you think it’s useful for your followers. This is not a necessity, but a choice for extra transparency. It can be as as easy as including a hashtag like #drawnbyAI, or including notes on your website, or in your privacy documentation, about how and when your brand uses AI tools.

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3. Designate an AI champion

If you’re serious about using AI for social media, assign someone on your team to be the “AI Champion.” This person should have a thorough understanding of the tech and devote regular time to monitoring, updating, and troubleshooting your AI social media tools.

They should also stay up-to-date on the latest news, regulations, and trends in AI and social media, so they can ensure your brand is compliant and up-to-date on best practices.

4. Monitor user feedback

Even if you follow all the rules, something can always go wrong with an AI program. Pay attention to how customers are reacting to your AI-generated content, and be prepared to take corrective steps when needed.

Listen for any mentions of confusion, surprise, or offense — those are all signs you might need to adjust your AI program in some way.

All tapped out of content ideas? 🥵

OwlyWriter AI is here to help. Simply plug in a topic and sit back while Owly crunches topic ideas you can build new social posts out of!

— Hootsuite 🦉 (@hootsuite) May 2, 2023

5. Ensure compliance and data privacy

Always check with legal and compliance departments before implementing any AI solutions, and make sure you have comprehensive data security and privacy policy in place before implementing any social media AI solutions.

This will help you protect customer data from being compromised by malicious actors and ensure that your users’ privacy is respected.

6. Just start

Here’s Nick Martin again:

“In order to maximize your efforts with AI tools, the first and most important thing you can do is get started. Start practicing, start writing prompts to see what works and what doesn’t, test the tool, and see what kind of outputs it can create.

Many AI copywriting tools can create poems, write clever bios, generate high-performing CTAs, or save you time by building a rough outline of a strategy document. You just need to get started and hone your understanding of what it can do and what prompts generate the best outputs.

So, what are you waiting for?


AI tools are still new and, therefore, pose potential risks. That’s why your best bet is to use an AI tool specifically designed for social media, like OwlyWriter AI.

OwlyWriter AI is a tool that lets you generate personalized content for social media in a secure and reliable way. It uses Natural Language Processing (NLP), which is powered by a pre-trained GPT model trained on public sources.

Unlike other AI tools, OwlyWriter AI doesn’t store your data or use your content to train any future models. OwlyWriter also has a strict data processing agreement that ensures the security and privacy of your user data.

Plus, OwlyWriter AI was created for social media experts, by social media experts. We brought together our brightest minds to create an AI tool that could generate high-quality, optimized content that is tailored to fit your brand’s voice and style.

Not a Hootsuite user yet? Start your free 30-day trial today — or try out these free tools that will give you a taste of what you can expect from OwlyWriter.

AI social media username generator

Stumped on what to call yourself online? Hootsuite’s instant username generator will give you username ideas that perfectly suit your internet persona (or the one you’re scheming up).

Username Generator

Tell us about yourself and let AI come up with username suggestions for you.




AI caption generator

Social media marketers wear all the hats and do all the jobs. Arguably the most time-consuming of them all is copywriting. When you’re tasked with tossing on this cap a dozen times or more per week, things can get a little overwhelming.

That’s why we built this easy-to-use caption creator designed for social media power users and beginners alike.

Instagram Caption Generator

Pick a style from the dropdown list, describe your post, and let AI write your caption for you.



FAQs about AI in social media How is AI used in social media?

AI in social media is used for tasks like content creation, ideation, sentiment analysis, and forecasting. It can help you create personalized content that is tailored to user interests, as well as analyze customer feedback and make predictions on future trends.

Using AI for managing social media can help brands save time and money, as well as improve customer engagement. AI can automate mundane tasks like content creation and ideation, allowing social media teams to focus on more strategic initiatives. AI can also provide valuable insights into customer behavior that can be used to inform marketing decisions.

How is AI used in Instagram? Will AI take over social media?

No, AI will not take over social media. While AI can automate some aspects of social media management, it is no replacement for the creativity and strategic thinking that comes from human social media managers. AI will continue to be used as an aid to help social media teams become more efficient and effective, but we believe humans will always remain at the heart of successful campaigns.

AI copywriting isn’t the only way to maximize your productivity. Manage all your scheduling, publishing, engagement, analytics, and more — across all your social media channels — with Hootsuite. Try it free today.

Get Started

Save time and grow faster with OwlyWriter AI, the tool that instantly generates social media captions and content ideas.

Here’s How Knox Configure Saves Time And Money For Businesses

For IT managers and administrators, establishing the security of employee mobile devices that access sensitive files and corporate networks is of paramount importance. However, ensuring those devices can be easily and rapidly deployed is no less imperative. Clunky and time-consuming device provisioning processes can quickly overwhelm an IT team.

Mobile device configuration can be a tricky and involved process, requiring dozens of steps to confirm that employees have set up their smartphones, tablets and wearables correctly. Doing so on a one-to-one basis can be hugely time-consuming for the staff of any IT department and can lead to gaps in the system if each device and employee is not dealt with in the same manner.

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So where does Knox Configure fit into the mobile security stack?

Knox Configure is a cloud-based service that allows businesses to remotely configure any number of Samsung devices and tailor them to specific user needs, which can range drastically depending on which lines of business are utilizing mobile devices, how frequently and within which industry — particularly in those that have heavy regulation and compliance standards like healthcare and financial services.

Where Knox Configure separates itself from the market — and makes life easy for mobile administrators — is its core points of streamlining and customizing the device setup process.

Out-of-the-Box Setup

Knox Configure’s out-of-the-box setup capabilities include automated provisioning, default setting changes and the ability to remove preloaded apps. Bloatware — all those preloaded apps — is a known security risk for mobile devices. Knox Configure is not intended to replace your Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution, but instead to automate all of the steps that would typically have been handled manually prior to the enrollment of the device.

Everything from settings and app permissions to connectivity can be adjusted during initial device setup. Knox Configure offers automated provisioning using the devices’ IMEI or serial number to identify each smartphone. This gives administrators granular levels of control over device configuration and will ensure that each employee has the right level of access to the files and systems they need. The process is similar to creating a gold standard image for a PC prior to issuing it to an employee.

Rebranded Software

By taking full control of the configuration processes, enterprises can customize what an employee sees when they power on their new smartphone for the first time. Enterprises can skip the setup screens from Google, Samsung and the carrier, replacing them with a customized sign-on process, and bypassing the traditional 12 to 16 setup screens usually encountered by users.

The platform also allows businesses to truly customize device setup and branding tactics, like altering the boot and shut down screens, seamlessly changing wallpapers and app placements, and preventing apps from being uninstalled by users.

While out-of-the-box setup capabilities are a time saver, having the opportunity to brand devices with individual company logos and a customized sign-on process changes the way budgeting for mobile deployments is handled. Rather than introducing a third-party mobile application with these same characteristics, IT administrators can define them during the early configuration process.

Purpose-Built Appliance

Another area the Knox platform shows its prowess is in what Knox Configure can do for access management. The system can transform off-the-shelf devices into single-purpose devices with specialized user experiences, such as establishing a professional kiosk mode that can lock down into a single mobile application and restrict access to all other settings.

Businesses also have the option to control whether employees can access Android’s factory reset option. When it’s turned off, it ensures that end users cannot cancel enrollment. You can also allow a factory reset to be carried out, but make it mandatory to be re-enrolled in Knox Configure afterward.

Because you have predefined profiles and policies — including everything from accessing corporate Wi-Fi networks to turning NFC and Bluetooth on or off — the minute your customized startup is finished, the devices are instantly ready to be used. This device configuration process negates many of the common pain points for both employees and administrators.

For employees, it removes the need to access hidden menus and systems in order to configure the device. And administrators can rest assured that, with the profiles predefined, they are leaving nothing to chance, and ensuring the security of the information stored on the devices as well as their corporate networks.

Knox Configure has become an essential part of the mobile security stack of a business. Turning BYO and CYO devices into purpose-built appliances for business use inherently layers security protocols without having to bolt-on additional solutions, providing quick ROI for companies with growing mobile fleets.

Interested in trying Knox Configure? Register for your free trial.

Save Your Money And Your Data By Preparing Your Phone For Travel

When you’re traveling, you rely on your trusty smartphone to navigate, translate, and stay in touch with friends. But on the road, you may face challenges like insecure or nonexistent Wi-Fi and a scarcity of places to charge your device. Before you head out the door, take a few steps to prepare your phone. These tips will make your indispensable travel companion even more resilient and useful.

Protect your device

You want your cell phone to last the duration of the trip. That means protecting the physical device—and the personal information you keep inside it.

To keep your hardware intact, invest in a sturdy case. No matter what make and model you own, you can find all kinds of reasonably-priced options online or in your local tech store. Look for a case that promises decent protection against drops and shocks, and check the manufacturer’s claims by reading online reviews before purchasing.

Even an intact phone won’t do you much good if it runs out of juice. If you’re about to leave civilization for the great outdoors, or simply worry about finding a good place to charge up, opt for a case that packs extra battery power. Alternatively, pick up an external portable charging pack. As with cases, you have a lot of options, including the Anker PowerCore 10000 ($26 on Amazon) and the Mophie Powerstation XXL ($100 on Amazon), which can also charge your laptop. When you’re browsing power packs, remember that in general, the more expensive choices provide more charging power.

Physical damage and dead batteries aren’t the only travel problems you should consider. If you lose your phone or a thief steals it, you also want to make sure your personal information stays safe. You should protect your lock screen no matter where you happen to be, but this security precaution becomes particularly important when you’re away from home. It’s all that stands between a stranger and your personal contacts, social media accounts, and apps. Some of these apps contain financial information or access to your credit card, and many will log you in without asking for a password.

Here’s how to protect your lock screen and keep your data safe from unwelcome visitors. On Android, open up Settings and tap Security & location; on iOS, access a similar set of options in Settings under Touch ID & Passcode. Activate an unlocking mechanism like the fingerprint sensor or a lengthy (six digits or more) PIN code. Avoid a swipe pattern, which is easy for onlookers to crack by watching you unlock your phone. While you should also make sure no one spies on you as you enter a PIN, the six-digit code is harder for snoops to guess.

Avoid shady Wi-Fi

Going away from home means relying on public Wi-Fi. By its very nature—anyone can access it—this network will be less secure than the one you rely on at home. Not all public Wi-Fi will compromise your security, but as a general rule, you should approach the networks with caution. Connecting to them puts you at the mercy of whoever set up the Wi-Fi and whatever safeguards they employed.

To begin with, assume anything you do on public Wi-Fi can be spied on. So keep important online tasks, such as banking and shopping, to a minimum. When viewing a website on your phone’s browser, make sure you can see the green padlock symbol in the address bar, and a HTTPS label in front of the address, before entering anything sensitive.

We’ve written in depth about staying safe on public Wi-Fi before, so read through that guide for some pointers. We’ll discuss just one of those tips here: installing a VPN, or Virtual Private Network. When you absolutely have to rely on Wi-Fi—for example, to back up those vacation photos—a VPN is a great way to add some extra security. VPN apps create an encrypted, personal connection to the web, making it much harder for anyone else to peek at what you’re doing.

Plenty of developers sell VPNs, so when you start shopping for a good one, check recent VPN round-ups to get up to speed on the best options. If you’re eager to get started right away, we’ve collected a few of our favorites. The browser developer Opera offers a free, simple, and effective VPN (for Android and iOS), and you can also pay (prices start at about $23 a year) for faster speeds and extra tracking protection. We also like NordVPN (for Android and iOS), which offers a free trial and then requires payments starting at $12 per month; TunnelBear VPN (for Android and iOS), which has a free version for limited use and charges $4 a month for more data; and IPVanish (for Android and iOS), which lets you start with a free trial and then begins charging $2 a week.

Save your data

When you jaunt around outside your home network, you might come home with an oversize data bill. To avoid this, you need to make minimizing your data use a top priority while you’re on the move, especially if you’re hopping between countries on a regular basis.

Luckily, you have lots of ways to reduce your data use. Check inside your favorite apps to see if they offer a data-saving mode. For example, Snapchat has Travel Mode: Enable it by tapping the ghost or bitmoji icon on the top left of the camera screen, then the cog icon on the top right, then either Manage Preferences (Android) or Manage (iOS).

Many web browsers give you data-saving options as well. In Chrome for Android, tap the menu button (the three dots on the top right), then Settings, then Data Saver. When you enable this mode, Chrome will compress pages via Google’s servers before showing them to you. However, the feature isn’t yet available on iOS, and it doesn’t include secure sites (those whose addresses start with HTTPS). Firefox for Android has a similar setting: Tap the menu button (three horizontal lines) at the bottom of the screen, then Settings, then Advanced. Under Data saver, you can prevent videos from autoplaying and images and fonts from automatically loading.

Beyond apps, Android and iOS provide their own data management tools. To access them on Android, head into Settings, then Network & Internet and Data usage; on iOS, open Settings and go to Cellular Data. On these pages, you can see how much data you’re using and even set it to turn off when you’re out of your local network (although if you take this step, you’ll have to rely on Wi-Fi for web access). In addition, Android has a Data Saver option that limits how much data background apps can use.

Depending on your carrier and contract, and the country you’re visiting, you might save money by buying a local or international SIM card. When you’re on the move, simply swap out your regular SIM for your travel version. To figure out the best approach, look up these cards on comparison sites and travel forums. If your carrier offers a roaming deal, you may opt to avoid SIM cards, so you should always put in the research before purchasing anything.

Stay offline

If you want to stay entertained without wasting data, apps like Spotify and Netflix let you download music and movies to your phone. Inside Spotify, toggle the Download switch on any playlist or album to save it. However, Spotify only lets premium users access this option. On Netflix, tap the download icons next to individual episodes or films. Because of its licensing deals, Netflix won’t allow you to download some content, but you can still find enough to entertain yourself when you’re away from home.

Many other apps—including Apple Music, Google Play Music, Tidal, Google Play Movies & TV, and Amazon Prime Video—also have offline options.

Outside of individual apps, keep an eye on the usage menus mentioned earlier to avoid draining too much data. And if you’re determined to maximize security and minimize cost, you can always activate your phone’s airplane mode, which disables both Wi-Fi and cellular network access, along with Bluetooth. As long as this stays on, your phone can’t send or receive any information.

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