Columns/Opinions

Wed
07
Nov
Edgar's picture

Small tactics to defend against cybersecurity attacks

By DAVE ERICKSON

We have all heard the words cybersecurity, but what does that really mean and how does it affect your business. Cybersecurity is the act of securing cyberspace. This includes working to protect internet-connected systems, including software, hardware, and data. As a small business owner, you probably rely heavily on your technology. Every aspect of your business can be affected by cybercrime. According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the theft of digital information has become the most commonly reported fraud, surpassing physical theft.

 

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Wed
07
Nov
Edgar's picture

Riding With The Big Boys

By LEE PITTS

One of the best perks about being a cow writer has been that it served as a gateway to visit many of the biggest and best ranches in America. The highlight came when I got to sleep in the legendary Big House at the King Ranch and dine at a table whose centerpiece was a big silver bowl awarded in 1943 to the seventh Triple Crown winner in history, the King Ranch’s own Assault.

During a time when many cowboys are without cows and anyone with a good sized flower garden calls itself a “ranch”, I got to visit ranches in West Texas that were measured in sections, not acres, and anything less than 40 sections was considered a hobby farm.

 

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Tue
30
Oct
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Big event coming up? Watch out for ticket scams

By HEATHER MASSEY

Whether you want to take in a baseball game, concert, or festival, be careful of ticket scams when you purchase online.

Unfortunately, some may be rip-offs and it’s not always clear how to tell if a ticket is fake. Last year, Better Business Bureau (BBB) received over 300 reports on BBB Scam Tracker about ticket scams related to sporting events, concerts, theaters, and more.

 

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Tue
30
Oct
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A little child shall lead them…

By DON NEWBURY

Things that go “bump in the night” bother me no more than mosquitos buzzing about. As long as they’re buzzing, they aren’t biting. Mine is a “live and let live” philosophy--no harm, no foul.

Brenda, my wife of 52 years, feels differently, however. To her, foreign sounds are precursors of something worse. The buzz of a single mosquito portends thousands more nearby, all eager to bite ‘cause they’re hungry.

 

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Wed
24
Oct
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The importance of knowing your numbers

By DAVE ERICKSON

It is important for a small business owner to know their numbers. Sales, amount of cash in the bank, labor costs, current accounts receivable aging, and average client ticket amount are all examples that could be important for a business owner to know.

One of the most important financial measures is gross margin, or top line margin. Basically, gross margin is the profit that is left over when you subtract your cost of goods (or service) from your sales. It is the profit used to contribute to covering fixed costs in order to have enough left over to yield a net profit, or bottom line profit.

 

Wed
24
Oct
Edgar's picture

Staying safe online

By WILL HURD

When someone says the word “hygiene,” what do you think of? You likely think of brushing your teeth, washing your face or hopping in the shower. However, what’s just as important in today’s increasingly digital world is your cyber hygiene.

Cyber attackers across the globe are working around the clock to gain access to our personal data. They seek out personally identifiable information including bank accounts and social security numbers in order to perpetuate identify fraud, engage in extortion, or sell our data to people who will engage in those activities. All this talk of “cyber” and “digital infrastructure” can be hard to grasp since we cannot always see someone hacking into computers, but the importance of staying safe online cannot be overstated.

 

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Wed
17
Oct
Edgar's picture

Signs Of A Stroke

By LEE PITTS

One of the signs you’re getting old is the AARP and the American Heart Association will send you pamphlets warning about the signs of a heart attack or stroke. Trust me, it’s not junk mail. Nor is it anything to laugh at, although I’m often seen rolling on the floor these days it’s not from laughter but because I fell and can’t get up. Here are some signs I had:

• I can’t remember words. That might not be a problem for a hot house hog janitor but I’m a writer and words are my meal ticket. Sometimes it’s simple words like when I called to my wife, “What’s that color that’s real dark?”

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Wed
17
Oct
Edgar's picture

Texas’ economy depends on ‘educational climate change’

By KIM ALEXANDER

Today’s Texas economy is doing great—and education, well, not so much. In 2017, the economy of Texas was the second-largest in the U.S. and ranked first for current economic climate thanks to strong employment.

Strong economies—from the rolling plains to the high-rises—depend on a qualified workforce.

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Tue
09
Oct
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Delivering real results back home

BY WILL HURD

As your Representative, my bosses are each of you, the nearly 800,000 people I represent across the 23rd District of Texas. That’s why whenever I’m not voting in Congress, I’m back home crisscrossing the 29 counties of TX-23 and meeting with as many folks as I can. Whether it’s hosting a public meeting, speaking with community leaders or dropping in to a local business to visit with the owner and his or her customers, I am often in multiple towns over a weekend before flying back to our nation’s capital at the beginning of the week.

This regular face to face communication has also resulted in the successful completion of casework for almost 3,000 constituents who have come to my office needing help with federal agencies like Social Security and the VA.

 

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Tue
09
Oct
Edgar's picture

Community newspapers are needed more than ever

By MELISSA PERNER

As we celebrate National Newspaper week, I was reminded recently how newspapers are more than just what’s going on in our community today.

Last week, I received a phone call from a woman who was desperately searching for information about a car accident that occurred outside our little town in 1959.

 

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