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A Scary Thought: What Would Happen If Your IT Guy Quits?

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Here’s a scary question most businesses don’t think about: What would happen if your computer guy suddenly quit? Most business owners think it would only be a temporary inconvenience when, in fact, the opposite is usually true.

How much are you at risk? Ask yourself the following 6 questions:

  1. Do you have written network documentation about your computer network? What software licenses do you own? What are the critical administrator passwords to your systems and devices? How is your computer network structured? What hardware do you own and when do your equipment warranties expire? Are there cloud vendors for email, online storage, hosted line of business applications, etc. that you don’t currently have? You should never allow a single IT person or company keep this information under their full control over your network and company. If they suddenly left for any reason, this could lead to huge consequences for your company.
  2. Do you know where your backup files are stored and if they are being stored properly? If you are like most business owners, you’re too busy dealing with “crisis of the day” to think about system backups and probably leave tasks to your internal expert. If your database gets fried and your tech is nowhere to be found, you might be in a lot of trouble.
  3. Do you have a written plan for restoring your network fast in the case of a disaster? If you don’t have a fully tested disaster recovery plan for your office, you could be at serious risk without ever knowing it until something happens.
  4. Do you know where all your software is stored? Bad things can happen to computers and servers, and the situation can be made worse if you are not prepared. Taking a minute to organize and store your software in a secure place can save you a considerable chunk of money in the event that you need to restore a program on your systems. If you don’t have access to the software or don’t know where it’s located, you might be forced to buy the software again.
  5. Do you know what routine maintenance is being done on your network? I know the very idea of learning about and keeping track of all the servers, workstations, and peripherals on your network is about as welcome as a black cat crossing your path, but it is important information to maintain. If your in-house expert leaves, who will take over?
  6. Do you know how to protect yourself from an ugly security breach? What happens if your IT expert splits with no warning AND has access to your company’s network? As soon as humanly possible, you should disable his or her access, including remote access to your network and all cloud based applications.

If you answer NO to any of the above questions, you need to get the answers now before it’s too late.

Being scared is fine for a fun Halloween, but not when it comes to your business. How about some peace-of-mind instead?

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As many as 60% of companies surveyed say they’ve experienced multiple security breaches in the last 2 years. Do you know what needs to be done in the aftermath of a breach? 

Read this fantastic article from Marketwatch for practical steps you can take as a consumer. And, as always, when it comes to your business, talk to me about how the Be Structured team can help make sure your network is protected and your data is safe.

 

 

MORE GREAT READS from reputable sources that help us all stay informed:

Let me know your thoughts, opinions and questions! Post a comment below!

Dedicated to serving you,

Chad

Posted on by Structured Staff Writers | Leave a comment

5 Easy Things You Should Do To Protect Your Business Now

Let’s face it: no one likes to think about bad things happening to them, much less plan for them. But since September is National Disaster Preparedness Month, we want to give you a quick “brush-up” on some simple things you can (and should!) be doing to protect your business.

  1. Review Your Business Insurance Carefully. Most businesses carry some type of general liability insurance that would pay them if their building and the things in it were damaged. However, many businesses do not have enough coverage to replace all the computer equipment and devices, desks, art, supplies and other things they’ve accumulated over the years that are housed in their office. Make sure you review your policy every year and keep in mind new additions and assets you’ve accumulated during that year.
  2. Consider Cloud Computing. One of the biggest advantages of cloud computing is that your data and assets are stored off-site in a highly secure, high-availability data center, with failover and redundancy built in. That means that if your building were destroyed and you had to evacuate, or if your server melted down due to an unexpected hardware failure, everything you’ve worked so hard to create over the years is safe and not a sitting duck in your unsecured closet or server room.
  3. Secure Your Data. Making sure that your data is protected from theft is a never-ending battle you don’t want to lose. Companies that get hacked and expose sensitive client and employee data can face severe penalties, lawsuits and massive loss of credibility in the marketplace. Make sure you never have to send an e-mail to your customers explaining the bad news that a hacker accessed their info through you. Further, if you keep any sensitive information (even passwords to portals containing sensitive information) on portable laptops, phones and other devices, make sure you have a way of controlling and safeguarding that information.
  4. Write A Simple Disaster Recovery Plan. The key word here is “simple.” If your plan gets too complicated or difficult, you won’t do it. But at a minimum, think of the disaster that is most likely to happen and that would have a severe and negative impact on your company’s survival.
  5. Review Your Employee Internet Policy. With so many people “addicted” to Facebook and Twitter, it’s important that your employees know where the line is in what they can and can’t post online. We also recommend content-filtering software to block content and web sites you don’t want employees visiting during work hours.

Announcing the September Special:

If you’re reading this and you’re not yet a Be Structured Managed Service client, we’d like to give you a FREE Disaster Recovery Assessment.

Contact Us to receive this free service. Three easy ways to contact us:

  1. Contact Us HERE
  2. E-mail at ContactUs@BeStructured.com
  3. Call us at 323-331-9452, and mention the “September Special.”

We’ll get you answers to the following critical questions and give you peace of mind:

  • How fast could you realistically be back up and running in the event of any natural or human disaster?
  • What backup, security and business continuity systems do you currently have in place, and are they sufficient?
  • Is all of your critical data being backed up, every day?
  • What are the largest threats to the security and integrity of your critical business data?
  • Do you know what steps and costs would be involved to rebuild your server and recover your data if you had to?

Contact us now!

Posted in Business Continuity, Cloud, Data, Tech Tips | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

A Good IT Person is Hard to Find!

A good IT person is hard to find, we get it.  This article from NPR nails what it feels like to have found that unicorn! We don’t think it should be that hard. If your current IT guy or group are rude, or impatient, or speak too much “geek” – you have a choice. In our mind, IT Support is as much about customer service as it is a technical service.

“When I hire people, I like to see how they answer my questions in person, on phone, and in writing,” says Chad Lauterbach, our President and head technician. This is because Chad believes technical skills do not trump people skills.

Proof point: read from our clients about our Support (Help Desk) staff.  We like what we’re hearing, but we keep striving to improve our service level and technical know-how.

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Don’t be sorry: Top 10 Disaster Planning Essentials

If your data is important to your business and you cannot afford to have your operations halted for days – even weeks – due to data loss or corruption, then read on.

A disaster can happen at any time on any day and is likely to occur at the most inconvenient time.

Download this report here: The 10 Disaster Planning Essentials For A Small Business Network.

If you aren’t already prepared, you run the risk of having the disaster coming before you have in place a plan to handle it. This report outlines 10 things you should have in place to make sure your business could be back up and running again in the event of a disaster.

Contact Us with questions or concerns about your Disaster Planning.  Don’t be sorry.

Posted in Business Continuity, Data, Security - News & General, Tech Tips | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment
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