Check to See if Your Email is Hacked

Recently I read about a company whose entire client database had been stolen online. The last time this worried me was when Adobe was hacked(!) but I started thinking about it anyway.

How would I know if my login to a company website was hacked?

After a bit of research, I found this website: Have I Been Pwned. The word “pwned” is a corruption of the word “owned.” It means to utterly defeat someone, or in this case, “have I been utterly defeated?”

You can enter your email on the website, and it will tell you if your email and personal login information are floating around the Internet. Hackers post lists of millions of other people’s email addresses and passwords online, and keeps track of most of them.

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Reminder: Update Your Studio to 2017

Start by changing all your dates to 2017:

1. Copyright notice on your website
2. Copyright notice on your blog
3. Copyright notice in your camera

Making these changes will let your clients know that you’re a professional business at the top of your game.

4. At the same time, this would be a great time to update your software. Make sure your anti-virus or spam-blocker software is up to date. If you use WordPress for your blog, make sure you’re running the latest version as well as updating any WordPress plugins.

5. This is also the perfect time to clean up old folders and directories on your hard drives. Make backups of all your 2016 jobs, and create a new set of folders for 2017.

Fortunately, you don’t have to worry about updating JDLab2You or JD Pick-a-Pack. Both of these programs check for the latest updates each time you run them, so you’ll always have the latest versions.

PPA Insurance a Great Member Benefit

ppa-logoEvery professional photographer is also a business, and like any business, there are different kinds of insurance you must have. Fortunately, the Professional Photographer’s Association (PPA) has a full package of the most important types of insurance every photography business should have.

In addition to the educational benefits offered by PPA, here is a quick list of insurance programs they offer:

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3 Questions to Ask Before You Hire a New Employee

newhireYou have two resumes to choose from for a second shooter or a front desk job at your studio. Both candidates have some skills. While big corporations use complicated personality tests to finally decide who to hire, if you’re like most bosses, you don’t have that time. Instead, you interview them, trust your “gut” and hope you’ve made the right decision.

The good news is that, according to research done at Wake Forest University, learning how a potential candidate will get along with you, your staff and your clients doesn’t require long, drawn-out personality testing. Instead, you can learn how a potential employee will behave by simply asking them how they feel about other people.

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Add Website Photography to Your Commercial Photography Services

northgate-building-afterIf you offer commercial photography, you probably show one or more services in the portfolios on your website:

• Headshots
• Interior/exterior photography
• Product photography

It makes sense. At some point, every business will need these services, especially when they need to update their website.

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5 Reasons to Try JDLab

JD Photo Lab LogoIf you are looking for a new lab here are five reasons you should consider using JD:

1. We’re a full-service pro lab. JDLab offers consistent, outstanding quality work, competitive prices, and a full catalog of products and services for virtually every type of professional photography. You shouldn’t have to give up any of your favorite products to send all your orders to one lab. Don’t see something you need? Give us a call. We probably already offer it.

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Save Money Accepting Credit Cards Through PPA

ppa-logoIf you are a PPA member and already accept credit cards, PPA’s program with Bank of America Merchant Services may be worth a look. PPA has negotiated a special rate for their members:

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Professional Photography and Change

photography business plan“The only thing that is constant is change.” This quote from the ancient Greek Heraclitus is just as relevant to your photographic business as it was when he wrote it 2,000 years ago. While the change from film to digital impacted many professional photographers, the more important change has been the consumer’s relationship to photography. Everyone has become a “photographer.” With cheap cameras and easy online printing, it has become increasingly difficult for some professional photographers to make a profit.

So what are successful big businesses doing to react to change?

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Drone Registration: What You Need to Know

droneIf you own a drone for aerial photography, you should be aware of the new FAA registration regulations. Basically, the rules are different depending on whether you plan to use it for a hobby, or for commercial purposes like photographing a wedding or home.

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Text Message Services Alert You of Shipments

photographer online searchFedEx, UPS and the US Post Office all have text message services that can notify you when a package is being shipped to you and an expected delivery time.

These online apps are perfect to use for your lab shipments or for the holidays. Enjoy!