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Reasons Why Your Company Needs a Secure Web Gateway Today

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Key Takeaways:

  • Comprehensive defense against sophisticated cyber threats is imperative for business continuity.
  • Effective encryption management is crucial for the protection of sensitive data.
  • Ensuring compliance with regulatory standards is essential to operate within the legal framework and maintain customer trust.
  • Employee behavior and cybersecurity awareness significantly impact the organization’s overall security posture.
  • Strategic investment in cybersecurity infrastructure is vital for future-proofing a company’s operations.

Table of Contents:

  1. Introduction
  2. Defense Against Advanced Cyber Threats
  3. Protection of Sensitive Data Through Encryption
  4. Managing and Monitoring Online Employee Behavior
  5. Ensuring Compliance with Regulatory Standards
  6. Creating a Culture of Cybersecurity Awareness
  7. Future-Proofing with Tech Investment
  8. Conclusion

Introduction

The intersection of business and technology brings about dynamic transformations as well as demanding challenges, especially in the realm of cybersecurity. The digital arms race against cybercriminals intensifies at this juncture, requiring companies to fortify their protocols and infrastructure to safeguard their assets. An indispensable tool for achieving this security is the secure web gateway (SWG), which acts as a vigilant sentinel guarding the gateway to a company’s digital ecosystem. We will dive into five compelling reasons why deploying an SWG is not just advisable but essential for businesses in today’s digital environment.

Defense Against Advanced Cyber Threats

Cybersecurity confronts a sprawling array of continuously evolving threats, rendering traditional defense mechanisms inadequate. Advanced cyber threats include stealthy zero-day attacks, sophisticated ransomware, and persistent APTs (Advanced Persistent Threats), which can cause catastrophic data breaches and system paralysis. An SWG sits at the forefront of a company’s cybersecurity defenses, comprehensively analyzing traffic, invoking advanced filtering techniques, and utilizing the latest threat intelligence to block malicious content and activities. Not only does it vet accessibility requests, but it also ensures that every packet leaving the company’s network is devoid of sensitive data or malware, maintaining integrity and confidentiality.

Real-Time Protection and Response

The immediate response capabilities of an SWG are critical given the fast-paced nature of cyber threats. By deploying real-time security measures, an SWG can halt an attack in its tracks, preventing potential damage or data loss. This capability ensures that an organization is not just recording incidents for post-mortem analysis but actively preventing them from manifesting into greater risks.

Protection of Sensitive Data Through Encryption

Data encryption is a fundamental security standard for preserving the privacy and integrity of sensitive data. It is a primary defense against unauthorized access during data transmission. A secure web gateway augments this by effectively managing encryption and employing robust algorithms to inspect encrypted traffic that could be concealing threats. It also allows organizations to enforce end-to-end encryption policies effectively, ensuring data remains secure throughout its lifecycle. Furthermore, these capabilities integrate seamlessly with rights management and access control systems, adding another layer of security to sensitive information.

Encryption as a Double-Edged Sword

While encryption is an essential tool for data protection, adversaries can exploit it to mask illicit activities. A sophisticated SWG can inspect encrypted communications without compromising user privacy, uncovering and mitigating hidden threats under legitimate encryption. This nuanced management of encryption is instrumental in adapting to the continuously evolving privacy landscape.

Managing and Monitoring Online Employee Behavior

The emergence of remote work has expanded the perimeter that companies must secure, intensifying the need to monitor employee online behavior. SWGs excel in this domain, offering comprehensive control over web access and facilitating policy adherence even in decentralized work environments. They enable IT administrators to react swiftly to any anomalous activity that may indicate a security breach or policy violation, ensuring that the digital workplace remains a secure zone for corporate activities.

Enhanced Visibility for Proactive Measures

The extensive reporting tools an SWG provides give organizations the visibility needed to make informed decisions regarding their cybersecurity posture. These tools shed light on usage patterns, inform resource allocation, and direct proactive measures to strengthen security where it’s most needed.

Ensuring Compliance with Regulatory Standards

The regulatory landscape concerning data security and privacy is elaborate and ever-changing. Adherence to these regulatory frameworks—such as the GDPR’s stringent data protection requirements—is non-negotiable for businesses to avoid severe repercussions. Secure web gateways facilitate this compliance by providing mechanisms to control and audit traffic, detect data exfiltration attempts, and manage consent protocols, which are vital functions to stay within regulatory boundaries.

Mitigating Compliance Risks

In addition to setting up defenses against external threats, a secure web gateway protects against inadvertent compliance breaches from within an organization. Through detailed logging and vigilant traffic monitoring, SWGs help pinpoint and rectify compliance missteps, avoiding costly penalties and preserving the organization’s reputation.

Creating a Culture of Cybersecurity Awareness

While technological solutions form the backbone of cybersecurity, the human element is a potential weakness and a powerful line of defense. Empowering employees through continuous education and layered security awareness training transforms them into informed guardians of the organization’s digital assets. SWGs support this culture change by integrating educational tools and alerts that can reinforce training and strengthen a company’s cybersecurity framework.

Empowerment Through Awareness

By fostering an environment where security is everyone’s responsibility, organizations can significantly reduce the likelihood of internal threats while building resilience against external attacks. This people-centric strategy bolsters the technical capabilities of security systems like SWGs, showing the interdependent nature of technology and education in cybersecurity.

Future-Proofing with Tech Investment

Investing in a secure web gateway is an investment in the company’s future. In an era where technology is rapidly advancing, and cyber threats are growing in complexity, an SWG is an essential technology that provides adaptive security measures. Businesses prioritizing the integration of cutting-edge security solutions will protect their current operations and future-proof their infrastructure against evolving threats. An SWG demonstrates a commitment to robust security standards and an understanding of the critical importance of a solid cybersecurity infrastructure.

Adaptive Security and Technological Evolution

As security threats evolve, so must the countermeasures that protect against them. A secure web gateway allows an organization to adapt its defensive posture as needed. With modularity and scalability, SWGs enable businesses to upgrade their security capabilities in alignment with the emerging technological landscape and evolving adversary tactics.

Conclusion

In the battle against cybercrime, a secure web gateway is an invaluable ally for any enterprise. By offering advanced protection against external and internal threats, ensuring compliance with intricate data protection laws, and fostering an educated workforce, SWGs are not just a technological necessity but a strategic enabler. They allow companies to navigate the treacherous waters of cybersecurity with confidence. An SWG is not only an immediate shield but also a long-term investment that underpins a company’s commitment to security, setting the stage for sustainable growth and digital resilience in a landscape fraught with cyber risk.

 

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Strengthening Cybersecurity Posture with Advanced Vulnerability Management Workflows

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Table of Contents:

  • Key Takeaways
  • Understanding Vulnerability Management Workflows
  • Identifying Vulnerabilities in Your Organization
  • Prioritizing Vulnerabilities for Remediation
  • The Remediation Process: Strategies and Best Practices
  • Verification and Validation Post-Remediation
  • Integrating Vulnerability Management into the Broader Security Strategy
  • Future-Proofing: Adapting to Evolving Cyber Threats
  • Best Tools and Resources for Vulnerability Management Workflow
  • Legal and Regulatory Considerations in Vulnerability Management
  • Conclusion: The Continuous Evolution of Vulnerability Management Workflows

Key Takeaways:

  • Understanding the integral role of vulnerability management workflows in cybersecurity.
  • Techniques for effective identification, prioritization, and remediation of vulnerabilities.
  • Strategies for integrating vulnerability management within a comprehensive security program.
  • Staying updated with evolving cyber threats is important to maintaining robust security protocols.

Understanding Vulnerability Management Workflows

An integrated security workflow encompasses a systematic approach to identifying, classifying, prioritizing, and addressing vulnerabilities within an organization’s technology environment. Implementing such methods is crucial to thwarting potential breaches and safeguarding digital information. A thorough vulnerability management plan lays out explicit steps to neutralize threats before they translate into actual harm. Workflows can vary from simple checklists to complex, automated processes involving a variety of cybersecurity tools.

Vulnerabilities come in many forms, ranging from software bugs to misconfigurations, all of which pose varying degrees of risk to the safety of organizational data. Thus, integrating a robust and repeatable process ensures both minor and critical vulnerabilities are addressed promptly. 

Identifying Vulnerabilities in Your Organization

Crucial to the cybersecurity lifecycle is the ability to spot weaknesses before they can be exploited. To accurately identify these digital chinks in the armor, organizations deploy a multitude of tools—from static application security testing (SAST) to dynamic analysis (DAST) and beyond. By harnessing these technologies, it’s possible to obtain a holistic view of the organization’s security style, pinpointing exposure areas within applications, networks, and systems.

Beyond automated tools, manual tactics, including rigorous code reviews and penetration tests, provide additional layers of scrutiny. These assessments simulate hackers’ strategies, revealing potential entry points and markers for urgent revision. Regularly scheduled tests are fundamental, as they help unearth new threats that evolve as part of the changing cyber landscape, ensuring an organization’s protective measures are always current and effective.

Prioritizing Vulnerabilities for Remediation

After establishing a clear picture of existing vulnerabilities, the next critical step is determining which issues to tackle first. Not all security gaps exert the same level of threat to an organization’s infrastructure. Some vulnerabilities may grant attackers direct access to sensitive systems, while others might only have a peripheral impact. Factors that influence the prioritization of remediation efforts include the potential for data loss, system downtime, or the exploitation of critical infrastructure.

Effectively prioritizing vulnerabilities entails a comprehensive risk assessment, considering the likelihood of a security gap being exploited and the potential damage that could result. It’s a delicate balancing act that weighs the flaw’s severity against the resources available to address it—ensuring that the most critical weaknesses receive immediate attention. In contrast, others are scheduled for future remediation.

The Remediation Process: Strategies and Best Practices

Once vulnerabilities have been categorized and prioritized, the next phase is remediation. This process entails developing and deploying fixes to the identified issues through software patches, system updates, or alterations in network configurations. One of the best practices in remediation is maintaining a patch management policy, ensuring all software is up-to-date and resistant to known threats.

However, this journey from detection to remediation is often fraught with challenges. It’s critical to balance the speed of response with the necessity for accuracy in deploying fixes. Quick fixes may inadvertently introduce new vulnerabilities if not thoroughly tested. Sharing experiences of successful vulnerability resolution can provide useful insights for organizations looking to refine their remediation strategies. 

Verification and Validation Post-Remediation

Remediating a vulnerability is not the endpoint of the management workflow; it’s critical to have mechanisms to verify and validate that the measures taken have effectively addressed the security gap. This often involves re-scanning the environment, conducting post-remediation penetration tests, or evaluating system logs for unusual activity that might indicate a lingering issue.

Continuous verification integrates assessment processes within routine operations, creating an environment where security becomes an ongoing concern rather than an afterthought. This ensures that fixes are deployed and remain effective over time, adjusting as needed to the changing threat landscape and organizational practices.

Integrating Vulnerability Management into the Broader Security Strategy

Vulnerability management can only stand with an organization’s aims for a truly resilient cybersecurity defense. It must be part of an integrated security strategy encompassing other components, such as endpoint protection, firewall deployment, and employee security awareness training. When each element works in concert, the organization’s security posture becomes more than the sum of its parts—forming a robust and responsive shield against cyber threats.

Furthermore, fostering a sense of shared responsibility for cybersecurity amongst staff members can go a long way. Through regular training and fostering a culture that values security, organizations can ensure that every layer of their defense—from the technology to the personnel—is optimized to detect and deter potential attacks.

Future-Proofing: Adapting to Evolving Cyber Threats

As attackers become more sophisticated, so must the defenses arrayed against them. Organizations must constantly refine their vulnerability management workflows for the latest security threats. Leveraging emerging technologies, like machine learning and artificial intelligence, can provide predictive capabilities to anticipate threats before they materialize.

Moreover, staying abreast of trends and emerging threats is not simply about purchasing the latest technologies; it also involves tapping into the collective wisdom of the cybersecurity community through forums, threat intelligence sharing, and industry-wide research compendiums. Organizations can ensure they are prepared to meet the challenges of tomorrow’s threat landscape head-on by continuously evolving and adapting security workflows.

Best Tools and Resources for Vulnerability Management Workflow

Investing in the right set of tools is critical for executing an effective vulnerability management workflow. Selections should be made based on compatibility, scalability, and the ability to integrate with other security platforms. Security solutions that offer comprehensive visibility, along with automated alerting and reporting capabilities, are often at the forefront of the industry.

Communities play a key role in staying informed and responsive. Online forums provide platforms for information sharing and discussion. At the same time, security research projects contribute valuable insights into new vulnerabilities and defensive techniques. Understanding the tools and resources at one’s disposal is pivotal to formulating a resilient security strategy.

Legal and Regulatory Considerations in Vulnerability Management

The cyber domain is not only about technical prowess; a complex web of legal and regulatory frameworks also governs it. These rules shape how organizations manage data security, privacy, and breaches. Complying with regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is imperative for businesses operating internationally or handling sensitive personal data.

Navigating these waters requires diligence and often the assistance of legal experts who specialize in cybersecurity law. Ignoring these aspects can lead to severe penalties and damage an organization’s reputation. 

Conclusion: The Continuous Evolution of Vulnerability Management Workflows

In conclusion, the realm of cybersecurity is a battlefield in continuous flux. Advanced vulnerability management workflows provide the strategies necessary to manage and anticipate the maneuvers of would-be attackers. As organizations embrace these comprehensive approaches, integrating cutting-edge tools and heeding regulatory requirements, they construct more reliable and robust systems capable of withstanding the onslaught of evolving threats. By accepting that the process of vulnerability management is never complete but a perpetual cycle of improvement, entities can forge ahead with confidence, knowing they are well-prepared to meet and mitigate future cyber challenges.

 

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Insider Insights: How Employers Conduct Drug Testing on Job Applicants

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With the ever-increasing emphasis on workplace safety and productivity, drug testing has become ubiquitous in hiring. It’s a tool employers utilize to ensure that their workforce complies with the law and functions at its best. This article delves into employers’ methodologies for drug testing on job applicants, the rationale behind these practices, and the implications for potential employees.

The Rationale Behind Drug Testing Job Applicants

Employers have several compelling reasons to conduct drug tests on job applicants. Primary among them is the need to maintain a safe work environment. This is especially crucial in industries where employees operate heavy machinery or carry out tasks that could endanger themselves or others if performed under the influence of drugs. Employers also consider drug testing a vital part of their due diligence to mitigate risks associated with hiring individuals who may have substance abuse problems, which can lead to absenteeism, decreased productivity, and increased healthcare costs.

Types of Drug Tests Used on Job Applicants

The most common drug test for employment is the urine test, owing to its cost-effectiveness and relatively non-invasive nature. However, employers may also utilize saliva, hair, and blood tests, each offering varying detection windows and levels of sensitivity. Hair tests, for instance, can detect drug use over a more extended period, while saliva tests can identify very recent use.

Employers often choose the type of drug test based on factors such as the specific substances they want to detect, the turnaround time required for results, and the level of accuracy needed for their hiring decisions. While urine tests remain popular due to their affordability and simplicity, some employers opt for more advanced methods like hair testing for positions where a longer detection window is crucial. The drug test choice may also depend on legal regulations and industry standards governing drug screening practices.

Understanding Legal Frameworks

It’s incumbent upon employers to navigate the complex legal frameworks governing drug testing. The laws vary significantly by state and federal jurisdictions, and there are specific rules about what substances can be tested for, how the testing should be conducted, and how test results should be handled. Failure to adhere to these legal stipulations can lead to violations of privacy rights or discrimination lawsuits.

Moreover, legal requirements may also dictate the circumstances under which drug testing can be conducted, such as pre-employment, post-accident, or random testing. Employers must stay informed about changes in legislation and ensure that their drug testing policies remain compliant with evolving legal standards. Consulting legal experts or employment law professionals can provide valuable guidance in navigating the intricacies of drug testing regulations and minimizing legal risks for the organization.

Drug Testing Protocols and Procedures

Transparency and consistency are key when employers conduct drug tests. Organizations adhere to strict protocols that govern when and how drug tests are administered. These may involve testing all applicants equally for the same job positions or ensuring that certified laboratories conduct tests. Many organizations also partner with third-party administrators to maintain impartiality and confidentiality in the testing process.

Additionally, communication of drug testing policies to all employees is essential to ensure understanding and compliance. Employees should be informed about the types of drugs being tested for, the frequency of testing, and the consequences of a positive result. Allowing employees to seek clarification or raise concerns about the testing process fosters trust and transparency within the organization. Regular reviews and updates of drug testing protocols based on industry best practices and legal requirements further enhance the effectiveness and fairness of the procedures.

Job Applicant Rights and Employer Obligations

Job applicants have rights that must be respected throughout the drug testing process. These include the right to privacy and being informed about the testing process in advance, often through an articulated drug testing policy. Employers, on the other hand, must not only comply with laws but also use drug testing in a way that is fair and free from discriminatory practices.

Pre-Employment Drug Testing vs Random Drug Testing

Whereas pre-employment drug testing is conducted as part of the hiring process, random drug testing is an ongoing policy that affects existing employees. Both practices have their place within an employer’s drug-free workplace policy, but they serve different purposes and are subject to other regulations.

Challenges Faced by Employers

One of the significant challenges employers face with drug testing is balancing the need for a drug-free workplace against the rights and privacy of job applicants. Additionally, with changing laws, particularly around marijuana use, employers must continuously update their policies to remain compliant with state regulations.

Cultural Shifts and Changing Attitudes

Societal attitudes toward drug use are evolving, and this is reflected in the legalization of marijuana in many jurisdictions. Employers must consider these cultural shifts when forming their drug testing policies to ensure they don’t miss out on talented applicants who may partake in legal activities outside of work.

Impact of Drug Testing on Job Applicants

Drug testing can be a source of anxiety for job applicants, who may see it as an invasion of privacy or be concerned about the confidentiality of their results. A positive test result can have significant implications for an individual’s job prospects, highlighting the importance of accuracy and fairness in testing.

Best Practices for Employers

To navigate the complexities of drug testing in today’s workplace, employers are encouraged to stay informed about legal trends, invest in training for those involved in the testing process, and maintain open communication with potential and current employees about their policies.

The topic of drug testing in the workplace is multifaceted, with layers of legal, ethical, and practical considerations. For employers, the objective is clear: maintain a safe and productive work environment. For job applicants, an understanding of their rights and the reasons behind drug testing can demystify the process and mitigate concerns. As societal norms continue to evolve and new legal precedents are set, so will the practices surrounding drug testing in the workplace.

 

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The Transformative Benefits of a Lifeline Free Phone Service

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Table of Contents

  • Understanding Lifeline Assistance Programs
  • Requirements to Qualify for Free Lifeline Phone Service
  • The Role of Communication in Personal Empowerment
  • How Technological Connectivity Improves Community Welfare
  • The Economic Benefits of Lifeline Programs
  • Overcoming Hurdles: Success Stories Enabled by Lifeline Phones
  • Lifeline and Education: A Pathway to Knowledge
  • Staying Informed: Lifeline Phones and Access to Information
  • Privacy and Security Considerations
  • Future Prospects of Lifeline Programs
  • Conclusion: Embracing Accessibility

Key Takeaways

  • Understanding the role and benefits of Lifeline assistance programs in modern society.
  • How Lifeline phones can be leveraged for personal empowerment, community welfare, and economic benefits.
  • Communication is essential in fostering opportunities for education, health, and safety.

Understanding Lifeline Assistance Programs

In a world where digital connectivity is synonymous with opportunities, Lifeline assistance programs provide equitable access to communication. These federally funded initiatives aim to level the playing field, ensuring that all citizens—especially the underprivileged—can maintain connectivity for essential services. In the fabric of social welfare, the Lifeline program is a critical thread designed to prevent individuals from being left behind in our increasingly digital society.

Requirements to Qualify for Free Lifeline Phone Service

The free lifeline phone in Texas, provides more than just a communication tool. It is a vital link to the outside world, offering access to education, employment, health, and public safety opportunities. What sets Lifeline services apart is the clear and measurable criteria for eligibility. Financial eligibility is determined based on federal poverty guidelines or membership in assistance programs like Medicaid or SNAP. The administrative process to obtain a Lifeline service is simplified, and applicants can easily apply online by submitting documentation that demonstrates their eligibility. Although the eligibility requirements for free phone services are straightforward, many things still need to be clarified about this service. Some people believe the process is complicated and hidden fees exist. It is necessary to debunk these myths to encourage eligible individuals to access this essential service.

The Role of Communication in Personal Empowerment

Empowerment often begins with a conversation, and a Lifeline phone can be the starting point for many. With a phone in hand, individuals gain the agency to forge connections, seek job opportunities, and sustain relationships. The availability of a communication device can radically alter an individual’s path, leading to significant improvements in their economic and social standing. Furthermore, case studies and current trends in Lifeline program usage demonstrate the profound impact that access to communication resources can have on overall empowerment—a key ingredient in the recipe for personal success.

How Technological Connectivity Improves Community Welfare

 It is important to note that the well-being of each individual has a significant and positive impact on the community as a whole. This concept is also relevant to technological connectivity, especially regarding the use of smartphones in managing health. Smartphones are essential for both personal and public health initiatives. Access to mobile phones is critical for making timely medical decisions in emergencies and health crises. They also enable citizens to participate in local governance through informed voting. Every Lifeline phone symbolizes hope and strength within the community, reinforcing its collective social structure.

The Economic Benefits of Lifeline Programs

The Lifeline program transcends its role as a mere provider of phone services to become a catalyst for economic growth. For individuals, access to a cell phone is frequently a gateway to employment opportunities, which may be otherwise inaccessible. On a macro level, widespread connectivity encourages economic activity and innovation, laying the groundwork for a more dynamic and inclusive economy. While the benefits to recipients are immediate and personal, the financial implications resonate throughout the broader community, proving the Lifeline program to be a sound investment in the nation’s economic vitality.

Overcoming Hurdles: Success Stories Enabled by Lifeline Phones

The real testament to the Lifeline program’s efficacy comes from the heartfelt narratives of its beneficiaries. Countless tales of individuals using their Lifeline phones to secure employment, manage health conditions proactively, start small businesses, and reconnect with loved ones. The difference made by owning a Lifeline phone often extends beyond overcoming present challenges; it builds a foundation for sustainable achievement and future resilience.

Lifeline and Education: A Pathway to Knowledge

Education is increasingly finding its home within the digital space, and Lifeline phones offer a portal to this vast world of knowledge. Through these devices, people can access online courses, educational apps, and abundant learning materials, regardless of location or financial status. Particularly poignant in an era of online learning, the Lifeline phone bridges the digital divide, democratizing education and paving the way for informed, skilled communities equipped for the challenges of a modern workforce.

Staying Informed: Lifeline Phones and Access to Information

The value of access to current events and critical information cannot be overstated. Lifeline services provide a reliable conduit for staying informed and are indispensable for exercising rights and responsibilities in a democratic society. Beyond personal benefits, citizens accessing information through their Lifeline phones are better prepared to engage in social and political discourse, enriching the democratic process and contributing to a vigilant, informed public.

Privacy and Security Considerations

While lifeline phones offer innumerable benefits, they also require responsible usage concerning privacy and security. Users must be vigilant in safeguarding personal data, and service providers are tasked with protecting their customer’s information. Education around safe practices for phone usage is an indispensable adjunct to the Lifeline service, ensuring that the communication freedom it affords does not compromise user safety.

Future Prospects of Lifeline Programs

The horizon for Lifeline programs is as broad as technological innovation allows. With continuous advancements in mobile technology, the potential to expand and enhance Lifeline services grows. There’s a palpable vision of a future where Lifeline programs provide essential communication tools and a platform for comprehensive digital participation. This empowerment tool reaches into every aspect of daily life and collectively uplifts society.

Conclusion: Embracing Accessibility

In summary, the value of a Lifeline free phone service extends far beyond its perceived utility. It embodies a commitment to maintaining the threads of societal cohesion, empowering individuals with the dignity of connection, and upholding our communities’ collective prosperity. Programs like Lifeline embody a society’s dedication to inclusivity, progress, and empathy—an affirmation that we rise by lifting others in our digital age.

 

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