fbpx
Status

Statements

The following updates are related to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreaks. Our team is consistently monitoring the CDC and local government resources for updates and will continue to update this page as we can. Please check back regularly to see the latest update.

Last Updated April 2, 2020 02:00 EST

Status History

As large numbers of people turn to video-teleconferencing (VTC) platforms to stay connected in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, reports of VTC hijacking (also called “Zoom-bombing”) are emerging nationwide. The FBI has received multiple reports of conferences being disrupted by pornographic and/or hate images and threatening language.

Within the FBI Boston Division’s area of responsibility (AOR), which includes Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island, two schools in Massachusetts reported the following incidents:

  • In late March 2020, a Massachusetts-based high school reported that while a teacher was conducting an online class using the teleconferencing software Zoom, an unidentified individual(s) dialed into the classroom. This individual yelled a profanity and then shouted the teacher’s home address in the middle of instruction.
  • A second Massachusetts-based school reported a Zoom meeting being accessed by an unidentified individual. In this incident, the individual was visible on the video camera and displayed swastika tattoos.

As individuals continue the transition to online lessons and meetings, the FBI recommends exercising due diligence and caution in your cybersecurity efforts. The following steps can be taken to mitigate teleconference hijacking threats:

  • Do not make meetings or classrooms public. In Zoom, there are two options to make a meeting private: require a meeting password or use the waiting room feature and control the admittance of guests.
  • Do not share a link to a teleconference or classroom on an unrestricted publicly available social media post. Provide the link directly to specific people.
  • Manage screensharing options. In Zoom, change screensharing to “Host Only.”
  • Ensure users are using the updated version of remote access/meeting applications. In January 2020, Zoom updated their software. In their security update, the teleconference software provider added passwords by default for meetings and disabled the ability to randomly scan for meetings to join.
  • Lastly, ensure that your organization’s telework policy or guide addresses requirements for physical and information security.

If you were a victim of a teleconference hijacking, or any cyber-crime for that matter, report it to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at ic3.gov. Additionally, if you receive a specific threat during a teleconference, please report it to us at tips.fbi.gov or call the FBI Boston Division at (857) 386-2000.

We are again, taking a moment to warn you and your team to remain vigilant for scams related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Cyber actors may send emails with malicious attachments or links to fraudulent websites to trick victims into revealing sensitive information or donating to fraudulent charities or causes. Exercise caution in handling any email with a COVID-19-related subject line, attachment, or hyperlink, and be wary of social media pleas, texts, or calls related to COVID-19.

We’ve taken this opportunity to open up the Security section of our eLearning portal. This will be open complementary until Tuesday, April 7th. Follow the links below to educate yourself on how to protect your business.

Not comfortable clicking a link – copy and paste the following into your web browser: https://get.wheelhouseit.com/end-user-security-COVID-19

Be sure to check wheelhouseit.com/status on our latest COVID-19 response

If you feel that your business may have fell victim to a cyber-scam reach out to us immediately – 877.771.2384.

Thank you,

The WheelHouse IT Cybersecurity Team

Due to the crucial role we play in keeping businesses, including many medical practices open, WheelHouse IT is considered an essential business and may continue to operate under state of emergency and shelter in place orders recently issued in the U.S.

We have been and will continue to operate to and from impacted areas as local conditions and restrictions allow. Our support teams are working round the clock to ensure that we continue to support our clients. The safety and well-being of our team members is our top priority as they continue to deliver critical support services to keep your business running.

During this time, before putting in support requests, we again ask that you internally develop a unified Work From Home strategy for everyone that works at your organization. Accurate and clear communication of this strategy with your Account Manager is critical to our success. Even if you’re unsure what to do, your Account Manager is available and prepared to help devise a plan that will, at the very least, offer your staff limited access to work resources, enabling your business to function at a limited capacity.

Please visit wheelhouseit.com/status for more information on the WheelHouse IT response to COVID-19.

Thank you,

The WheelHouse IT Team

As we are all adapting to a work from home environment. We must now rely more than ever for collaboration tools. Within the Microsoft ecosystem lives Microsoft Teams. WheelHouse IT has embraced Microsoft Teams for several years now. We understand that this tool comes with a lot of features that might be new to you and your team.

With that said, we have opened our eLearning Portal – Microsoft Teams, for the next seven days to help you and your team learn more about Microsoft Teams. We hope the links below will help you better understand the power you have to collaborate remotely.

Microsoft Teams:

Tips & Tricks for Remote Workers:

Happy Collaboration!

The WheelHouse IT Team

Dear friends & partners of WheelHouse IT,

Dominating the news cycle is the COVID-19 virus, and we can bet that it is also dominating your personal and professional conversations. At WheelHouse IT, it certainly is no different; we continue to actively implement our response to this fluid situation while operating in an environment of considerable uncertainty.

We are all in this together.

Our team continues to lean on our core values: Community, Accountability, Positivity, Inspiration, Equality, Family & Engagement. These values have been instilled to guide us over the years. We test all our actions against them because they will continue to be our core values for generations to come.

WheelHouse IT is proud to be here through this time of need. With that, we are pleased to offer our Managed IT Services clients a complementary solution to aiding their teams to be able to work remotely during this time. Our core value of Community clearly states that “Giving our best every day to the system guarantees that the system gets better every day.” By providing this solution to our clients, we are ensuring that we are supporting the system and our local economy to keep their business up and running.

We are drawing on twenty years of experience in helping our clients navigate through their most urgent and challenging situations. In a crisis, such as COVID-19, the foremost concerns must be personal health and safety—of our families, our team members, and ourselves. Taking care of those who contract the virus and joining the community in taking reasonable and sensible steps to slow its spread is of the utmost importance.

Once you have addressed the critical efforts to safeguard your family and your people, you then turn to the health and safety of your business. We built WheelHouse IT to protect our clients’ businesses and help them manage through the most complicated challenges. As we have never been through this situation, there is no single formula for doing this, and the COVID-19 threat is unprecedented. However, there are a few responses that can be applied here, which we have developed through our tenure of helping clients with their most significant challenges.

We know several things about crises through our experience: they are all different, and they all end. How they impact your business depends on the speed and quality of your crisis management.

Many of you have taken a proactive approach to reach out to us, asking simple questions, brainstorming ideas, or double-checking our action plan.  The outreach humbles us, and we are pleased to help in any way we can. You are not only our friends; you are part of the WheelHouse IT family, and we are here to help.

I thank you for putting your trust in us every day.

Hello,

We want to take a moment to explain what we are doing to help your organization in response to the growing demand for remote access resulting from the CDC COVID-19’s recommendation to Work from Home (WFH). We also want to advise you of potential limitations to keep in mind when creating a WFH strategy.

​First and foremost, we ask that you meet with your leadership team to develop a unified WFH strategy for everyone that works for your organization. Accurate and clear communication of the strategy mentioned above with your Account Manager is critical to our success. Even if you’re unsure what to do, your Account Manager is available and prepared to help devise a plan that will at least offer your staff limited access to work resources to keep your business functioning at a limited capacity.

Here’s a helpful article to get you started: https://blog.wheelhouseit.com/keeping-teamwork-alive-while-working-from-home

Please do not instruct individual staff members to contact us directly. Our effectiveness in supporting your business and safeguarding the health of your staff is heavily dependent on your leadership team’s ability to coordinate our efforts as efficiently as possible.

​Our ability to support your staff’s home networks is limited. Since home networks are not managed, monitored or qualified by us, our documentation, knowledge and tools are limited to effectively troubleshoot home internet connections, printers and/or workstations. Personal mobile devices (i.e. iPads, Tablets, Chromebooks, etc.) present additional difficulties as well, due to their limited functionality and flexibility. Even though they resemble laptops and despite their popularity Chromebooks also fall under this category and are not acceptable for remote access due to their limitations. For this reason, we highly recommend deploying any existing Desktop or Laptop computers from your office for any employees that lack a traditional computer at home. We also have basic guides we can provide for helping your staff setup their personal Mac OS X and Windows computers for remote access.

​IT distributors, vendors and their associated supply chains are currently overwhelmed throughout the world.  Our procurement sources are advising us that orders currently have a 6-8-week lead time.  This means our ability to provide you with computers, printers and other devices will be significantly delayed until COVID-19 is under control and the global supply chain catches up. If you are able to find these devices that you require, online or at retail stores, please buy them and we will assist you to the best of our abilities to configure those devices. Unfortunately, we are unable to use the same channels for purchase as consumers can.

Lastly, please be mindful that we’re experiencing a high call volume for requests to setup and support end-users with remote access. We ask for your patience and that you instruct your staff to email support@wheelhouseit.com and allow us the time to reach out. Emailing first will get you a place in line and help us limit phone calls to company-wide emergencies.

Sincerely,

The WheelHouse IT Cybersecurity Team

Hello,

This is a reminder to remain vigilant for scams related to COVID-19. Cybercriminals and nation state-sponsored spies are proudly taking advantage of the COVID-19 panic. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has reported an uptick in cyber actors sending emails with malicious attachments or links to fraudulent websites to trick victims into revealing sensitive information or donating to fraudulent charities or causes.

We encourage you to exercise caution in handling any email with a COVID-19 related subject line, attachment or hyperlink, and be wary of social media posts, texts, or calls related to COVID-19.

Additionally, we remind you to remain vigilant and take the following precautions:

  • Avoid clicking on links in unsolicited emails and be cautious in opening email attachments
  • Use trusted sources – such as legitimate, government websites – for up-to-date information on COVID-19
  • Don’t reveal personal or financial information in email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information
  • Verify a charity’s authenticity before making donations

If you feel that your business may have fell victim to a cyber-scam reach out to us immediately – 877.771.2384.

Thank you,

The WheelHouse IT Cybersecurity Team

Hello,

At WheelHouse IT, we see our role in serving our clients and the community to be crucial at this time when companies large and small are stretching their resources to protect their teams.

The COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak and subsequent measures imposed by governments around the world are creating unavoidable impacts to supply chain related IT equipment procurement orders across all industries.  The impact is effecting our business as well, resulting in longer wait times than usual.  Nonetheless, we are continuing to accept and process order requests for Computers and IT Equipment as usual.  However, we are asking for additional patience, given the delays we’re experiencing that are beyond our control.

We do not typically keep inventory outside of our Hardware-as-a-Service offerings. However, we are attempting to establish warehouse inventory to ensure continued fulfillment of demand and to minimize the impact to our clients. We are working with our vendors and making every effort to understand and offset the potential effects of production and delivery delays.

Additionally, to support Social Distancing and limit in-person interaction, we are working with our clients to maximize our support via remote methods. We are asking our clients to limit on sites that are not critical.  Our team is standing by to assist a member of your team with executing many tasks that would typically be done onsite by a WheelHouse IT engineer.  Of course, if the task is critical and requires a member of our team, we are still deploying engineers, we just ask that you limit these requests to only the most vital in nature.

You are invited to visit www.wheelhouseit.com/status for the latest updates on any impact to our operations.

On behalf of our team members at WheelHouse IT, I want to thank you for choosing us as your IT partner.

Gani Zebersky, CEO

Hello,

Here are some steps WheelHouse IT has taken to address the risk of COVID-19:

  • Established a COVID-19 Task Force that meets daily to evaluate our efforts and to maintain our focus on virus prevention and the well-being of our team members. We are working to ensure the concerns of team members related to COVID-19 are addressed and that their questions are answered
  • Implemented procedures to document and isolate team members exhibiting symptoms consistent with COVID-19, as published by the CDC
  • Evaluated travel restrictions for associates to eliminate or reduce travel when possible and reviewed facility access for associates and visitors to minimize the risk of exposure
  • Ensured availability of alcohol wipes, sanitizers, tissues, masks and other needed supplies for use in the workplace and increased the frequency of facility sanitization to reduce the risk of infection
  • Implemented communication programs in line with CDC guidance specific to COVID-19 disease transmission mitigation
  • Refined our already developed contingency planning for alternative work arrangements such as working from home

We do not typically keep an inventory of product on-hand. However, we are attempting to build a stock to ensure continued fulfillment on demand and to minimize the impact to our clients. We are working with our vendors and making every effort to understand and offset the potential impact of production and delivery delays.

We ask for your patience as the impacts of COVID-19 unfold, and we will continue to communicate with you in a timely and transparent way. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us with questions or concerns.

Gani Zebersky, CEO

Hello,

Like so many of you, we have spent the last several days and weeks learning about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and how it will impact the world around us. For WheelHouse IT, that means understanding how it affects our communities, including employees, clients, and vendors.  Then, to ensure there’s no interruption to our work, making the necessary adjustments to our operations.

We have one simple objective that guides us: keeping you and our employees safe. This objective has been driving our conversations every step of the way. With that in mind, we have made several moves in our business to respond to the threat of the Coronavirus.

WheelHouse IT is prepared to support your team’s need to Work From Home (WFH), should that need arise or simply become a safety precaution. If you do not have a WFH solution, we have crafted a temporary best-effort solution that can be offered. Simply contact us at support@wheelhouseit.com and our team will be glad to review the various Remote Access options available to your organization and get the process going ASAP.  This temporary WFH solution is being provided free of charge by WheelHouse IT to make it easier for our MSP Customers to make a hurried company-wide decision to allow its staff to work remotely, in hopes of reducing the spread of COVID-19 and keeping their staff safe.

Accordingly, as indicated in our earlier emails regarding the Coronavirus outbreak, WheelHouse IT’s entire team is also prepared to work from home if needed. WheelHouse IT has also arranged to provide additional PTO and financial assistance to any team member requiring medical attention as a result of the Coronavirus.  We have also increased the cleanings and stocked our offices with sanitizing supplies to help reduce the risk to our team and any of our visitors.

You are invited to visit www.wheelhouseit.com/status for the latest updates on any impact to our operations.

On behalf of our team members at WheelHouse IT, I want to thank you for choosing us as your IT partner.

Thank you,

Stay healthy,

Gani Zebersky, CEO

Hello,

As we are all carefully watching the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) situation, WheelHouse IT is actively taking steps to ensure the safety of our teams and the continuity of our operations. We’ve had disaster preparedness and business continuity plans in place for events such as natural disasters and pandemics for some time, and we designed our business to withstand these occurrences with minimal impact to your business.

As part of our ongoing efforts to keep you informed and aware of any changes to our operations, we have created a page on our site that you can visit anytime: https://www.wheelhouseit.com/status/

Here, you will find details on our strategy, pertinent updates as it relates to our operations and information about any impacted events through our community.

We want to assure you that while we do not anticipate significant disruptions to our operations as a result of the Coronavirus, our internal tools are cloud-hosted, our teams can work remotely, and we have redundancies across our offices should any location be impacted.

Additionally, all WheelHouse IT offices are following the CDC and World Health Organization recommendations on hygiene to prevent infection and we are encouraging our team to limit non-essential travel.

Below are links to the CDC resources.

We understand that the rapidly evolving situation is causing uncertainty, which is why we are encouraging everyone to put their health and wellbeing first, so we can continue to operate effectively and help prevent the spread of this disease.

Stay healthy,

Gani Zebersky, CEO

Hello,

WheelHouse IT wants to remind you and your team to remain vigilant for scams related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Cyber actors may send emails with malicious attachments or links to fraudulent websites to trick victims into revealing sensitive information or donating to fraudulent charities or causes. Exercise caution in handling any email with a COVID-19-related subject line, attachment, or hyperlink, and be wary of social media pleas, texts, or calls related to COVID-19.

The United States Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) encourages individuals to remain vigilant and take the following precautions.

  • Avoid clicking on links in unsolicited emails and be wary of email attachments. See Using Caution with Email Attachments and Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Scams for more information.
  • Use trusted sources—such as legitimate government websites—for up-to-date, fact-based information about COVID-19.
  • Do not reveal personal or financial information in email and do not respond to email solicitations for this information.
  • Verify a charity’s authenticity before making donations. Review the Federal Trade Commission’s page on Charity Scams for more information.

Sincerely,

The WheelHouse IT Team

Twitter Feed

  • Make better, more informed and faster decisions with synchronized cloud applications. With #MSDyn365 and #Office365… https://t.co/nbpeAYRXxD 1 day ago
  • 80% of businesses are considering moving to cloud UC. This infographic, brought to you by WheelHouse IT, shows how… https://t.co/2VAmELPryR 1 day ago
  • What exactly does #defense-in-depth mean when it comes to #endpoints? Read this  @Microsoft  ebook, brought to you by… https://t.co/LeLasYsywt 1 day ago
  • Sure, you have lots of data, but is it providing actual value to your company? Use #Azure AI capabilities to help y… https://t.co/fkYFFiMySm 1 day ago
  • There will be over 21 billion #IoT devices online this year. So how exactly are startups and global companies using… https://t.co/v7HKfPX3eZ 2 days ago