Entries by Dana Fennell

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TPM by United Systems – Social Engineering

We’ve all heard of cyber threats such as phishing and malware. While we all may be familiar with these terms and be educated on how to avoid or protect ourselves and our organizations from these types of attacks, these threats are only a small part of a much larger scheme called social engineering.

Over the last few weeks, the team at TPM by United Systems has been discussing social engineering, how cybercriminals use social engineering, and ways to protect yourself and your organization!

Breaking Down Social Engineering

Most people have heard terms like phishing and malware. But did you know those are only part of a larger scheme called social engineering? This cyberthreat is not a new kind of fraud. It has been used for many years to manipulate a wide range of people into giving up important data about themselves or their workplace. A prime example of social engineering goes back to Greek mythology with the Trojan horse. They infiltrated the city of Troy with a “peace offering” filled with soldiers, thus winning the war. With technology at the forefront of our lives, social engineering has entered a new era. Physical human interaction is not necessarily required anymore. These criminals gain information through emails, pop-ups, and public Wi-Fi networks, to name a few. The main objective is to influence, manipulate or trick users into giving up privileged information or access within an organization. They are doing this right under your nose, and if you’re not paying attention, you might be a victim as well.  

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Itron Inspire 2021

Virtual Only Event

Oct. 4-6,2021

One of the primary goals of Itron Inspire is to provide the utility community a safe platform to learn from and connect with industry peers and thought leaders. After monitoring conditions related to the ongoing pandemic, and with the health and safety of customers, partners, and employees as a top priority, Itron has made the decision to host Itron Inspire virtually only for 2021.

Despite this shift to a fully virtual experience, we still look forward to gathering our community for informative keynotes, peer-led panels, insightful breakout sessions and the opportunity to learn how to move our industry forward during this unprecedented time. Together, with our utility and smart city colleagues, we’ll explore technology and services to drive business transformation, reimagine customer engagement and inspire innovation.


Join us for Itron Inspire, taking place virtually Oct. 4-6, 2021. A full agenda for the virtual experience will be posted soon.

Featured Keynotes and Sessions

  • Opening General Session: Todd L. Inlander, SVP and CIO of Southern California Edison; Tom Deitrich, president and CEO of Itron; Marina Donovan, vice president of global marketing and public affairs of Itron
  • Tuesday General Session–Trek to Decarbonization: Tom Rand, co-founder and managing partner of ArcTern Ventures; Kimberly Britton, CEO of EPIcenter
  • Women in Utilities: Denise Thomas, president of The Effective Communication Coach
  • Big Picture Session Panels:
    • Resilience & Reliability – Addressing Urgent Grid Challenges
    • Cybersecurity in a Complex, Interconnected World
  • Closing Session and Awards: Farah Saeed, Frost & Sullivan Awards; John Marcolini, Itron Innovator Award 

Tracks. Sessions. Insights. Oh My!

Get inspired by your peers in four unique tracks and dozens of breakout sessions.

With dozens of informative breakouts, led by your industry colleagues, how can you decide which sessions are right for you? One way to help choose is by reviewing sessions by track—we sort them all into one of four tracks:

Applications, Outcomes
& Services

Transform communities and business with intelligence that empowers. Topics covered include AMI and grid ops, forecasting, consumer energy management, water ops, renewables integration and more.

Data
Management

Discover how to do more with data, turning into intelligence, insight and action. Topics include meter data management solution overviews and strategies to better store and leverage massive amounts of data.

Mobile &
Measurement Solutions

From advanced meters, regulators, measurement devices and sensors to collection systems, service and mobile solutions, intelligence starts here. Explore the possibilities in this foundational track.

Multi-Purpose
Network Solutions

Deliver efficient, resilient and sustainable utility and city services through intelligent connectivity. Topics include network and IIoT solution overviews, strategies and proven use cases to drive innovation and extend value.

When people combine ingenuity + technology, we will inspire and design a better future for ourselves, our businesses and our communities. Join us for #ItronInspire21.

Register today for the best rates and room availability. We can’t wait to see you in Palm Desert this fall. Registration is open to all Itron customers, partners and prospects. Itron will comply with all local and CDC guidelines for COVID-19 safety. View Itron’s health and safety policies for more information.

Solar Powered

As a solution provider for utilities, we are innately aware of the need for sustainability and environmental consciousness. So when setting about designing our new headquarters in Southwest One Industrial Park in Benton, KY, we knew that we wanted to take steps to reduce our environmental footprint. After much consideration and consulting, we decided that creating our own solar farm was a good fit for us and our location.

Our solar farm consists of 252 panels and produces 101.3 kWp at peak production. Since installation on May 25th, we have produced more electricity than is being used by our building.

Over 47 MWh of electricity!

By powering our building with solar, we have saved 71,577.49 lb. of CO2 emissions or the equivalent of planting 540.83 trees!

We’re excited to have a positive impact on our environment and to do our part to ensure that our earth is sustained for years to come!

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TPM BY United Systems – 8 Biggest Security Threats to Small Businesses

We still see the same scene in horror movies: the main character runs into the house, slams the door, locks the deadbolt, and sighs in relief — but the killer still sneaks up and attacks them from behind!  

If you own a small business, you might find yourself in a similar situation. Sometimes small business owners spend large amounts of time and resources physically protecting their operations just to let the most dangerous threats sneak in through the figurative back door. 

In a recent blog, TPM by United Systems discusses the 8 biggest security threats that small businesses face. Use the link below to read more!

Reach out to the TPM By United Systems team today and learn how we can help protect you from these threats!

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Recent Events

It has been a very exciting time for us here at United Systems. Not only did we have our Grand Opening Celebration, but we also had Spirit Week and our full marketing team in the office for sales training.
We wanted to first thank everyone that came out to our Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting Celebration. We had a great time celebrating with our friends, family, and the community. We’re very happy to be in our new headquarters and look forward to what the future holds!

We’ve included some of our favorite images from this event below.

Use the link below to view the event. 

We recently had our first-ever Spirit Week in celebration of our Grand Opening. Employees dressed based on themes each day in exchange for a donation to the United Systems Charitable Giving Fund, with proceeds to benefit local needs.
Everyone had a great time dressing up. We’ve included some of the fun outfits below!

Finally, we were able to have our full Marketing staff in the office for sales training. It had been over a year since our full marketing team was together. With many new members on the team, we were excited to have everyone together to learn more about the great products we offer, get to know each other and do some great team building.

United Systems Marketing Department meets for training at their new headquarters in Southwest One Industrial Park.

United Systems & Itron Leadership meet to strategize and discuss future plans.

It’s been a busy couple of months for us here at United Systems. We’ve all returned to the office, moved offices, put our new building together, brought on several new team members, resumed our charitable giving program activities, hosted our full Marketing staff for training, and held our Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting celebration.

We’re grateful to be in our new headquarters and to have our full team together. We are looking forward to continuing to help utilities, local governments, and small businesses improve operations using technology and automation.

Our President, Scott Waldrop, said it best:

"We are more than a technology company. We help cities, utilities and companies simplify and focus on their core business using better processes supported with technology and automation. We have traditionally been a technology company, but we want to be more that."
Scott Waldrop
President

Stay tuned for more great things to come.

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TPM BY United Systems: Data Breach- Are You on a Hackers Watchlist?

Over the last few weeks, the TPM by United Systems team has been discussing threats to businesses such as hackers and phishing and what businesses can do to protect themselves.

In a recent blog, the team discusses how businesses may be making themselves targets for hackers.

Whether it’s outdated devices, outdated software, human error, or malware, things may be in play that are making your business an easy target for hackers with malicious intent.

In order to protect your business, it is imperative that you are aware of the threats that exist, ways in which you may be exposing your business, and partner with a knowledgeable team to help ensure that your organization stays protected.

Read more about ways in which you could be making your business an easy target for hackers!

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TPM by United Systems: Fixing Your Weakest Link

Over the last few weeks, the TPM by United System team has been educating users on what phishing is, spotting a phishing attack, and ultimately, how to ensure your organization is protected against these kinds of attacks.

Their most recent blog discusses how your organization’s employees could be your weakest link unbeknownst to you and them!

Two things aren’t going away in business: employees and security threats. So make sure that you’ve taken care of everything you can to avoid falling victim to these attacks!

You can have every piece of security hardware available: firewall, backup disaster recovery device, and even anti-virus. However, your employees will be the biggest vulnerability in your organization when it comes to phishing attacks. Is it possible to mitigate the risk?

Ask yourself these questions: Do your employees know how to protect your network and all the data within it? Can they spot a malicious email or link before clicking on it? Do your staff members know how to secure your digital information from social exploits by sophisticated hackers? Are you using an outdated operating system that is no longer supported?

In this blog, the TPM by United Systems team offers you some tips on password creation, training your employees, and how to spot a malicious email. These are key factors to the security of your database. One breach, one crack in your security, and you may fall victim to stolen data, ransomware, and the possibility of closing your doors.

Congressman James Comer Visits United Systems Recently Completed Headquarters in Southwest One Industrial Park

On Wednesday, July 7th Congressman James Comer and other local dignitaries visited Southwest One Industrial Park and United Systems’ recently completed headquarters located within the park. We are privileged to have had the Congressman tour our location and discuss the great economic opportunities Marshall County, Kentucky, offers to industries of all kinds.

“We were honored to host Congressman Comer in our community today, which included a tour of United Systems & Software’s facility. It is always exciting to share the momentum of Southwest One Industrial Park and our community’s economic development with our congressional delegation.”
-Josh Tubbs
Kentucky Lake Economic Development

As a business founded in Marshall County, KY, we are passionate about the continued economic growth of the area. Over the last 40+ years, United Systems has been a part of the community and has provided jobs for individuals in the area. Our rapid growth over the past years and our need to accommodate a quickly growing workforce made Southwest One Industrial Park ideal for us to relocate.

We have had the privilege of seeing economic growth throughout Western Kentucky, and the Southwest One Industrial Park is another example of forward-thinking progress for the area. We are excited to be a part of continued growth in the area, and we’re eager to see what the future has in store in Marshall County, KY.

"I enjoyed joining local leaders at United Systems and Software to see a company that is on the cutting edge of technology in the 21st Century. This facility is a testament to the sort of industries that can thrive in rural communities when local government and economic development leaders work with the private sector to invest and create jobs in places like Marshall County."
Congressman James Comer

Congressman Comer, United Systems Leadership, and Local Leaders meet to discuss United Systems' New Headquarters & Southwest One Industrial Park.

Building Highlights

Over the last 44 years, United Systems has worked diligently to help utilities and local government improve operational efficiencies through the effective use of technology. What started as a small business with only a handful of employees has grown into a company with over 50 employees serving over 1,000 customers across an 18-state territory.

Then

Now

Our offerings help utilities provide better service to customers, improve operations, and increase sustainability. The Alliance™ software calculates over 15 million utility statements annually. Through our managed services offering, we partner with hundreds of businesses to ensure that critical systems and data remain secure while reducing downtime and increasing operational efficiency. Our team resolves nearly 20,000 service tickets for customers each year.

While our customer base and catalog of offerings have grown, our goal has remained the same: deliver the highest quality products & services that benefit our valued customers while fostering a productive corporate culture focused on respect & inclusion, all while working to enhance the lives of individuals within the community.

With our customers, goals, and the needs of our growing workforce in mind, we began the lengthy process of finding a location, designing and building our new headquarters, and here we are today in a 22,000 square foot location at Southwest One Industrial Park.

To say we’re grateful would be an understatement. To all our employees, customers, vendors, and partners: words could never express how grateful we are for you and your continued commitment to United Systems. We are beyond blessed to have all our employees working out of our new location and are looking forward to what the future holds! It’s a bit chaotic at times, has a couple of unpacked boxes throughout, and we’re still working on finding a place for everything but, there’s nowhere else we would rather be!

As we continue to settle in, we wanted to share a few interesting facts and some of the things we love about our building!

Moving is hard, ya’ll. We’re still settling in and learning our new building, but as we mentioned, we couldn’t be more excited to be here!

We hope to see you all on July 29th at our open house and keep an eye out for more peeks inside our new location!

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Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

United Systems & Software is excited to announce the Grand Opening of our new headquarters in Southwest One Industrial Park in Benton, Kentucky!

Please join United Systems, Kentucky Lake Economic Development, and the Kentucky Lake Chamber of Commerce for our Grand Opening celebration on July 29th from 4 PM to 6 PM.

Light refreshments will be provided from Magic Valley Catering and Parcell’s Bakery.

Our event will begin at 4 PM with a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony with Guest Speakers and Open House to follow.

After a trying year for all, we are excited to come together with our community, customers, and partners to celebrate the completion of and our move to our new building.

We’re looking forward to sharing our new location with you all and can’t wait to see you!