cybersecurity real world

Cybersecurity in the Real World: Spooky Stories From Real Churches Just Like You

Cybersecurity attacks can feel like vague, distant, ambiguous things that “happen to other people.” It’s easy to kid ourselves into thinking we’d never fall for a cyberattack, but the unfortunate reality is that this happens to incredibly smart and accomplished people all of the time. Cybersecurity attacks aren’t so obvious anymore, and they’re not passive…

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Ultimate Guide OneNote

The Ultimate Guide to Microsoft OneNote

OneNote is a digital notebook that automatically saves and syncs your notes as you work. You can organize your content into different notebooks that you can then divide into sections and pages. OneNote allows you to revise your notes with type, highlighting, or ink annotations. With easy navigation and search, you can always find your…

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phishing email

Recent Uptick in Phishing Emails Targeting Churches

The unfortunate truth is that cyber criminals are getting smarter and sneakier with their attacks, and we have seen an increase in phishing emails preying on churches specifically as of late. These cyber criminals are smart, and they know that churches are “in the business” of caring for and helping people. They create false scenarios…

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kid min tech trends header

Kid Min Tech Trends 2021

Check out the top eight technology trends we’ve seen developing in Children’s Ministry this year, plus ideas for how you can implement them in your own church! 1. APPS FOR INTERACTIVE BIBLE STORIES Kids are used to engaging with online resources for learning in school and life in general, so allow them to connect with…

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Webinar Church in the Cloud

Enable Webinar | Church in the Cloud

In this webinar, we are breaking down the benefits, considerations, costs, and savings of moving your church over to the cloud. While moving an entire church or organization over to a cloud-based solution is extremely beneficial, there are some important considerations to make before doing so – it’s not quite as easy as just pressing…

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digital signage

The Enable Guide to Church Digital Signage

Digital signage is a great way for churches to communicate with members and the surrounding community, and most of our church partners use it in some form. The complexity of digital signage can range from a large colorful road side sign with a scrolling RSS feed to a small kiosk display that rotates through a…

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password manager

Why You Need A Password Manager

It’s not news that secure passwords are the number one end-user security measure you can take to ensure you are safe online. Surely by now you’ve heard how dangerous it is to use the same password for every account you have — but remembering multiple strong passwords is very difficult. How many times have you…

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Lessons from 2020: Online Ministry Beyond the Couch

To understate the matter considerably, What a year it has been! We have endured political strife, social and racial unrest, and a COVID-19 epidemic that has wrought massive changes in the way we worship, work, shop, engage, connect, educate our children, and do just about everything else in our daily life. Understandably, many are eager…

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cybersecurity webinar

Approaching Cybersecurity with Confidence

Cybersecurity attacks and breaches are real threats for churches, and we’re only seeing them increase in frequency as technology becomes more and more integrated into our lives. For a lot of people, these threats illicit feelings of fear, and the uncertainty feels daunting. If the possibility of a cybersecurity attack feels something like a looming…

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teams phone system

Teams as a Phone System and How to Use It

Teams Calling Microsoft Teams is a one-stop-shop for groups to collaborate easily and efficiently, and it has become an especially helpful tool right now during the global pandemic when many churches and staff are still working remotely. One awesome feature we want to highlight today is Teams Calling. Calling is used within the Microsoft Teams…

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Communication Tools Guide

Communication Tools for Church Meetings

While multiple options for communication tools is no new thing, the major shift to remote work in every industry has greatly increased the need for powerful, effective, user-friendly collaborative communication tools. In the church realm, there are multiple situations where different groups of people need to communicate in different capacities. There is staff-to-staff communication (both…

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strategic minsitry planning

Staying Ahead of the Curve: Strategic Planning for Ministry

“In ministry, time spent in strategic technology planning and preparation is never time wasted.”    Increasingly, churches are investing in technology to support and enable a wide variety of ministry functions. Certainly, this was true before the imposition of quarantines and shelter orders during the COVID-19 pandemic. But the meeting restrictions and rules put in…

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return to site checklist

Return-To-Site: The Technology Checklist

Various local, state, and federal governments are beginning to release plans for reopening workplaces, churches, and other public spaces. Different government entities are recommending different timetables, strategies and plans, so people everywhere are considering the steps that they must take to be prepared to “re-enter” daily life in their specific context. As church doors begin…

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security in strange times

A Guide to Security and Privacy In Strange Times

During these unprecedented times of “social distancing,” “shelter-in-place,” and “stay-at-home” orders, everyone is having to learn or experiment with new technology and work habits. For many people, this will mark their first exposure to remote work and virtual settings. With these new realities comes a need to not only remember a few fundamental security tips,…

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online giving

Online Giving Tips From the Pros

We “sat down” last Friday with two experts in the online processing space to discuss the current giving environment. During our conversation we asked them to provide any recommendations they felt were especially important for churches that wanted to be more successful with their online giving efforts right now. Our interviewees have many years of…

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online giving

Crucial Giving Considerations in the Midst of Crisis

Over the past couple of weeks as we have talked with the many churches we serve, two primary questions have dominated our conversations. First, how can our staff and volunteers utilize technology to communicate, work, serve and minister effectively given the restrictions on our ability to be physically present? In additions to assisting individual churches…

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serving in the storm

Serving in the Midst of the Storm

We are so excited to see the many churches who have stepped up in the last few weeks to transition to online services and a staff that works from home. You have continued the core functions of the church, including worship, teaching, prayer, and encouragement. You have let people know that the church can adapt and will…

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Work from Home Tips

Enable’s Top Work-From-Home Tips

Are you new to working from home? Here are our top tips from Enable’s Work-From-Home pros.   1. Optimize Your Work Setting Create a dedicated work space. Defining the lines between your work space at home and your living space at home does wonders for helping you feel balanced and energized. It doesn’t have to…

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Covid-19 Resources

Enable COVID-19 Resources: Quick Links

This is a one-stop-shop resource for all of the content we have written and compiled for you pertaining to COVID-19 and its effects on our work lives. Our goal is to provide a central location for best practices and tools to help you work remotely, collaborate with staff, leadership, members, and guests, and to help…

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Plan B Hospitality: When Traditional Methods Won’t Work

Updated December 2020   Sometimes things don’t go according to plan. As you well know, many traditional church and hospitality practices have been roadblocked this year to protect public health. By this point, we have all transitioned from working off of contingency plans into more permanent situations. Since March, all churches have ridden the roller…

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microsoft teams guide

Microsoft Teams: A Quick-Start Guide

Microsoft Teams is a platform that Enable and our clients find invaluable to a functioning flexible collaborative working environment. We created this guide to explain the features of Teams and to help as many churches as possible know about and be able to use this resource, especially at a time when the ability to work remotely…

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IT Security Roadmap Part 1

A Roadmap for Implementing IT Security in Your Church: Part 1

Today, IT security and cybercrime are topics that relentlessly demand the attention of anyone charged with the leadership of a church, ministry, school, business, or any other type of organization. The threats and risks associated with cyberattacks are real and growing. It should no longer surprise anyone in church leadership that churches are a chosen target of…

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begin with the end in mind

Begin With the End in Mind

Data Analytics Series | Part 2 In Stephen Covey’s book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, he identifies Habit 2 as “begin with the end in mind.” This concept is directly applicable to the topic of analytics. Our world is awash in data. Data, in and of itself, can be more confusing than helpful if you…

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Webinar QandA

Enable Webinar | You Ask, We Answer

In our new webinar series, You Ask, We Answer, one of our Senior Engineers and Strategy Consultants tackle the most common church IT and strategy questions our clients run into every day in an interactive Q&A session. In this month’s webinar, they cover everything from managing IT, to the Cloud, to choosing the right vendor,…

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Security Webinar

The Do’s and Don’ts of Church IT Security | Enable Webinar Series

Why should you care about cybersecurity? Because your church’s network, environment, data, and the people behind all of that are important! Securing these things shouldn’t be an afterthought.  In this webinar, Do’s and Dont’s of Church Security, we talk about the most common cybersecurity threats all organizations face today, including social engineering, passwords, email & download…

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dark web

Dark Web Research: Is Your Personal Data Safe?

These days it seems we can’t go even one week without hearing about another data breach or leak of our personal information. And all too often, these data dumps include very personal information as well as our email addresses, usernames, and even our passwords. But how do IT security researchers find out about these breaches and recapture the data that has been stolen? They…

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content filtering

Content & DNS Filtering: A Preventative Approach

While not always understood as such, content filtering is a critical security component of technology environments in churches, ministries, schools, and almost every other organization as well. While your church has probably implemented some content filtering by now, you may not understand the breadth of security benefits it can provide.   What is Content Filtering,…

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VPN remote access

VPN: Secure Access Anytime Anywhere

What do you do when you have work to do and can’t make it into the church office? How do you gain access to the church files or systems you need to use so that you can do your job from home or other locations outside the church? These are very common questions posed by…

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secure wi-fi

Secure Wi-Fi for Churches: A Necessity, Not A Luxury

The Expectation: Robust, “All-the-time” Internet Access Today, people have an expectation of always-on connectivity and anytime access to Internet resources for information, banking, shopping, research, entertainment, social interaction, reading, communicating and so much more. They can get angry and frustrated when they cannot get online—even when flying in an airplane or traveling in fairly remote…

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IT budget

How do I Create an IT Budget for my Church?

UPDATED FEBRUARY 2021 Technology as a Ministry Enabler Today, technology assumes a prominent place in the work of ministry. Education, communication, collaboration, evangelism, discipleship, training, operations, financial management, events, human resource management, compliance, and many other areas are all supported by technology. A myriad of hardware, software, technology processes, equipment, applications, and other options exist…

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church cyber insurance

Does My Church Need Cyber Liability Insurance?

An All-Too Common Scenario At this point in 2019, the scenario is becoming all too familiar. Cybercriminals use social engineering to bypass technology safeguards and security protection to infiltrate email systems, bank accounts, credit card accounts, member databases, and other areas containing sensitive data. The criminals then utilize the data to steal money and identities, create…

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SIEM: Powerful Tools to Deal with Dangerous Cyberthreats

Throughout the series of articles that we have been posting on the blog in 2019, we have referred to the increasing intensity, frequency, and sophistication of the cybersecurity threats that churches are battling. Given the type of personal data maintained by churches, whether in their church management system (ChMS) or other data sources, churches are…

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disk encryption

Disk Encryption: Preventing Unauthorized Access to your Data

In other posts covering the security of your church’s information technology infrastructure, we have covered topics such as multi-factor authentication, UTM firewalls, email security practices, password management, security training, and the implementation of documented security policies. Even if all of these policies are observed conscientiously, there are still opportunities for cybercriminals to wreak havoc on…

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utm firewall

UTM Firewall: What is it and How Does it Work?

It is not news to most church staff (or almost anyone else in the developed world) that the instance and potential impact of cyber-attacks is expanding at an exponential level. Not only are churches not immune from this trend, but, with increasing regularity, they are a chosen target of this trend. This heightened cyber threat environment presents…

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business continuity

Beyond Backup: Ministry Continuity

The discussion of technology security goes beyond cybercrime and hacking. It also must focus on the backup of important technology data and assets. The importance of data backup is not a new idea. Churches and other organizations have long recognized the importance of backing up their critical data. Your important church data resides in several…

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for every alaskan

Ministry Spotlight: For Every Alaskan

Alaska is a place of irony. It is easily one of the most beautiful spots in the world, boasting stunning scenery and teeming with wildlife. At the same time, it is a place filled with brokenness and pain. The levels of drug abuse, rape, depression, and suicide are alarmingly high among the population of Alaska.…

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email security

Email Security: The Keys to the Kingdom

You may be familiar with some version of an all too common nightmare email story. A trusted manager receives an urgent email requesting immediate action. Their superior is traveling, does not have cell service, and is unable to connect to the financial accounts or systems. An important payment to a partner, missionary, or vendor is…

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employee training

Employee Security Training: Your Most Powerful Tool in the Cybersecurity Fight

Imagine that you have installed the most expensive, state-of-the-art security system available to protect your home. A technology marvel, it combines heat sensors, motion detection, hair-trigger alarms, sophisticated locks, intrusion barriers—the whole works. It is a system capable of frustrating and bewildering the most seasoned criminal. But such a system can actually be defeated quite…

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technology children's ministry

Ministry Spotlight: Irving Bible Church

Meeting Kids Where They Are: Utilizing Technology in your Children’s Ministry Tess Nordick works in children’s ministry at Irving Bible Church in Irving, Texas. Before joining the church staff, Tess worked at IBM for ten years. Technology innovation has always been a big part of her world. One of Tess’s strongest ministry passions is pursuing…

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child check-in

Why Children’s Check-in Matters

Children’s Check-in Matters to your Ministry (Yes, Yours!) Whether you are children’s ministry leader or not, if you work in a church that serves people with kids, then your church’s child check-in process has a tangible impact on your ministry. A well-developed children’s check-in process is critical to just about every ministry at your church, whether it’s Bible study, community groups, preschool…

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cybersecurity for churches

11 Vital Cybersecurity Tips for Churches

Cybersecurity rightfully occupies a spot at the forefront of the news today and is a topic of great concern for leadership in churches, ministries, businesses, and organizations of every kind. The concept can be overwhelming to many, and unfortunately, too many churches do not have a comprehensive strategy in place to prevent attacks from those…

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CPC Special Saturday

Ministry Spotlight: Special Saturday

Special Saturday is an incredible ministry hosted at Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville, TN. It is a respite program for special needs families. Once a month, parents of children with special needs can come and drop their children off for a morning full of music, crafts, snacks, dancing, Bible lessons, and games. The parents get…

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church self care

Self Care: A Word from Pastor Gary Lindsay

April has gone, May is here, and as churches are coming out of the busy Easter season and looking ahead to all that summer brings it is important for staff members to remember to take care of themselves, too! It is easy to get caught up in all of the planning, preparation, and craziness that…

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easter tech checklist

Technology Checklist for a Busy Sunday

There are a few times every year when attendance at church spikes dramatically. Easter Sunday and Christmas always see more faces than normal. Other times, the church may be sponsoring a conference or hosting a large event. The common experience during all of these times is a large, episodic influx of visitors. This influx creates…

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vCIO key role

Are You Missing This Key Piece to Your Technology Puzzle?

We talk to churches every day who have invested money, time, and effort into implementing new technology as a tool for ministry, but are disappointed in the results. Through the constant bombardment of news and information regarding ever-changing technologies, they try to pick and choose solutions wisely. They employ these technologies to avoid headaches, but…

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Ministry Spotlight: SchoolWorks

Carlos: A Life is Changed Carlos was in kindergarten. By all appearances, he was a quiet little boy with his whole future ahead of him. But given his actual situation, the statistics predicted that he was very likely to fall through the cracks and miss out on the educational and economic opportunities that our country…

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Wi-Fi: Solving the Real Problem

Remember the days when it would take a 10-pound laptop and a 50-foot network cable to access the Internet in any room other than where the cable modem was? Those days are long-gone, and we have Wi-Fi (and some other new technology) to thank for that! Wi-Fi is everywhere now and is in fact a…

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microsoft licensing

Microsoft Licensing for Non-Profits: A Guide

Microsoft Windows Licensing can be very expensive and tricky to navigate for organizations, but it is a vital piece of the technology infrastructure. The good news: there are discounted options for non-profit organizations and churches. The bad news: the structure of these discounts is fairly complicated. In this post we will break down servers, licenses,…

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password manager

Why You Need A Password Manager

CLICK HERE FOR THE MOST RECENT VERSION OF THIS POST, UPDATED APRIL 2021   How many times have you seen the “incorrect password” message when trying to log into one of your frequented (or not frequented) sites? Surely by now you’ve heard how dangerous it is to use the same password for every account you…

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chms integration

ChMS Integrations

In our last post, we discussed the necessity for making your ChMS the “Single Source of Truth” for the people and activity data in your church. Once churches implement the necessary information processes and gain the staff commitment to the single source of truth concept, they have gone a long way in ensuring that the…

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ben ellis worships with CPA students

Ministry Spotlight: Ben Ellis

September was a month of powerful and emotional remembrance. On a national level, we honored those who lost their lives in the tragedy of 9/11. In the community of Brentwood, Tennessee, Enable’s home, we also remembered the life and legacy of our friend, Ben Ellis. Ben left us in September 2016 but lives powerfully still…

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chms single source truth

Single Source of Truth: Your ChMS

In our experience consulting with churches who are looking for new church management software, there is one “main thing” that triggers most churches’ search in the first place. People don’t trust their data. The reason they don’t trust their data is that many times, the information doesn’t add up. In some cases, they don’t have…

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wireless technology

Why We Recommend Ruckus Wireless

The need for and expectations of wireless networks is ever-growing, and it can be overwhelming when deciding what wireless network equipment to install in your organization. There are countless products available from many different vendors, all offering similar features and advertising that they are the best solution for all of your wireless needs. Often times, your decision will come down to what solutions you know others…

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Ministry Spotlight: ChangePoint Alaska

When caring people are willing to enter unselfishly into dark, ugly situations to help those who cannot help themselves, lives are changed, horrible circumstances are reversed, and “impossible” situations are transformed. The members of ChangePoint Alaska and the surrounding community witness these types of life changing turnarounds on a regular basis.   ChangePoint Alaska describes…

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Welcome to Enable

When I come across organizations or companies that have made an impact on the world over time, I am always interested in learning why their founders chose to do the hard work of starting them.  To be honest, some have formed companies because, in a flash of self-awareness, they have concluded that the only bosses…

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Ministry Spotlight: Irving Bible Church

Irving Bible Church is a large church in the Dallas area, dedicated to spiritual growth and community service through its various ministry initiatives, both inside and outside the walls of the church. When Enable Ministry Partners first connected with IBC in 2008, IBC was dealing with some significant technology issues that were hampering its ministry…

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