Let’s face it; Accidents happen. If it can go wrong, there’s a good chance it will. That’s why every business, from the mom-and-pop shop around the corner to the Fortune 500 company in the downtown high-rise, needs a backup and disaster recovery plan. At Nitor Solutions in Winston-Salem, we know disasters — manmade and natural — are on the rise. We also know business continuity and disaster recovery plans are crucial to long-term business success.
According to FEMA, four out of 10 businesses don’t reopen after a disaster and another 25 percent fail within one year. Too many businesses are unprepared for a disaster because they don’t have the proper backup and disaster recovery plans in place. The truth is catastrophic events can derail your business, but you can stay ahead of unexpected events by recognizing the potential threats.
Here are 4 reasons your small business needs a backup and disaster recovery plan:
1. Natural Disasters
We’ve all witnessed the deadly impact of natural disasters across the country. Notable natural disasters range from hurricanes along the Atlantic coast, flooding everywhere from New York to Louisiana, and wildfires in California. Businesses are devastated. Buildings, equipment and livelihoods have been damaged or destroyed.
2. Building & Hardware Failures
As the temperature outside rises, so do the number of building fires. Summertime is a peak time for commercial structure fires as the summer heat, overworked air conditioning units and lightning strikes increase the risk of fires.
When your building suffers a fire, there’s a strong chance your hardware may fail. Hardware failure causes data loss, downtime and reduced productivity.
3. Cyberattacks and Data Breaches
Hackers and cybercriminals are starting to view small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) as prime targets. According to Verizon’s “2019 Data Breach Investigations Report,” 43 percent of breaches involved small businesses. Here are some of the ways cybercriminals attack:
- Malware — malicious software such as spyware, viruses and ransomware. Once in your computer, the malware can block access to your computer, covertly transmit data or destroy the system from the inside.
- Phishing — the act of sending fraudulent communications, such as emails or attachments, which ultimately trick the receiver into providing access credentials.
- Exploiting Outdated Software — Hackers taking advantage of weaknesses in older versions of computer programs. For example, according to CSO, there was a patch available for Windows computers months before the WannaCry ransomware attack, but the people affected put off downloading the update.
4. Human Error
Unfortunately, if there is going to be a data disaster, we — the end user — will most likely be the cause. Ninety-five percent of cybersecurity issues are the result of human error, according to IBM. These behaviors can include clicking on suspicious links, neglecting to download software patches and updates, accidentally deleting important files and intentional damage caused by disgruntled employees.
How We Can Help
For SMBs, it’s not a matter of “if” you’ll be affected by hardware failure, a data breach or some natural disaster — it’s a matter of “when.” But with a comprehensive business continuity and disaster recovery solution including onsite and offsite servers, automated cloud backups and enhanced security features, your business won’t miss a beat when the unexpected happens.
Let Nitor Solutions help by designing a business continuity and disaster recovery strategy completely customized for your business. Contact us today to get started.
Haven’t backed up your business data? Then, you’re monkeying around with the sustainability of your business. It’s so easy to lose everything. No backup server. No backup files. No data recovery services. No more business.
It’s incredibly important to safeguard against total loss of business data. What if you get hacked? Your hard drive crashes. Or, you spill coffee across your keyboard. You’ll want to make sure a copy of what keeps your business operating is safely stored using remote or offsite backup for retrieval.
According to tech and business industry pillars, consider this:
- < 50% of surveyed small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) have no disaster recovery service in event of a catastrophic data loss (Symantec)
- 20% of SMBs don’t do daily backups; and 43% of those that don’t back up daily think it’s a waste of time (Paragon Software Group)
- > 93% of companies that lose a data center for > 10 days file for bankruptcy within a year of the incident (National Archives & Records Administration)
Here’s more to think about when it comes to backing up your systems, preventing business data loss, and properly protecting your information.
Tape vs. Cloud Backup Services
A simple way to implement backup services is to clone a copy of your data onto a tape. Companies have relied on this method or other internal systems for preserving information for … ever.
Today, those methods are past their prime. They’re expensive and unreliable. Failures are common. Security breaches are a threat. Tapes are plastic … they can melt in the firebox! Unfortunately, businesses often don’t realize the risks they run until the damage has been done.
But, with a well-thought-out data backup and recovery solution, a managed service provider and you can guard against threats with a real-time replication system that will work for your business. And, it will be one that’s easy to manage and suits your budget and business needs.
A good and dependable alternative is backing up your data to the cloud … just like all the cool companies are doing these days. There are plenty of services that let you backup data via the Internet.
Take, for example, Axcient, Datto, or even Carbonite. These are popular, cloud-based backup solutions for SMBs that a managed service provider can serve up. They are known as hybrid cloud solutions, meaning that there’s an onsite backup appliance at your location that backs up your network in near real-time. For added protection, the appliance then uploads your data to the cloud (to what is really an off-site data center).
The advantage to using these services is that you don’t have to worry about losing or breaking a physical drive, or watching it melt. It’s also unlikely your data will get lost. If it did, you could reasonably expect that these solution providers would go out of business. Cold comfort, yes, but comfort nonetheless.
So, let’s talk today about data backup and disaster recovery services for your business. Contact us now for more information and a free consultation. We will show you the best ways to protect your business data on your path to becoming more agile, efficient and scalable.
If there’s one industry that cybercriminals love to attack, it’s finance. Organizations within the industry, like banks, insurance companies and brokerage firms, are rife with confidential customer financial information that hackers are eager to steal. Moreover, cybercriminals are coming up with innovative new ways to attack these institutions, researching the best ways to target victims and maximize their return. So, what kind of cybersecurity protection is available to financial organizations?
The first step to successful cybersecurity protection is understanding the risks and then developing strategies for how to address them. Let’s break it down here, beginning with the biggest reasons malicious actors pursue the financial sector.
Data Pays Big
If there’s one thing that pays big for hackers, it’s customer data. Cybercriminals often steal information like credit and debit card info and Social Security numbers and sell it on the dark web. In fact, a hacker can make between $250,000 and $1 million by selling a batch of 50 to 100 credit card numbers alone. It’s a lucrative business – and hackers believe it’s worth the big risk of getting caught.
Digital Transformation Vulnerabilities
The financial industry continues to experience a vast digital transformation as financial products, services and operations become more available online. While this means more convenience and easier user access, it also increases the risk of cyber-related attacks like ransomware. This is especially true as more financial institutions work with outside tech companies to provide a better digital experience, potentially exposing customer data to misuse or loss.
Complicated Compliance Regulations
Regulatory compliance is a must for any kind of financial institution, yet compliance laws can be difficult and time-consuming to follow. State, federal and international regulators continuously release new rules and laws to combat the evolution of new cyberattacks. Cybercriminals can easily expose businesses that are not up to date with their compliance by targeting weaknesses in their system, leading to heavy fines and legal penalties as a result.
How Can the Finance Industry Prepare?
Beyond knowing the risks in the industry, finance organizations can get better cybersecurity protection by being aware of the vast amount of security tools, strategies and resources available to assist them. For instance, by working with security experts from a managed service provider (MSP), organizations can undergo security testing that addresses any security gaps in their systems. They can then create a plan to close these gaps and craft a stronger security infrastructure that keeps cybercriminals out while keeping the right individuals in.
How We Can Help You Fight Against Cybercriminals
Unfortunately, cybercriminals are only getting savvier with their hacking techniques, and that’s not bound to change anytime soon. Businesses that operate in the finance industry need to be more alert than ever before to what type of vulnerabilities their company faces and fix them before it’s too late. Fortunately, our team of seasoned security experts can help get you started on the right foot. Contact us to learn more about the security services, tools and resources we can provide you with today!
If you’d like to learn more about how we can help your business with cybersecurity protection, check out additional blogs in our resources section.
As technology advances, it offers businesses and organizations new opportunities to grow. However, when given the opportunity to expand, these advances can also make managing your IT in-house difficult. Times like these can drive an organization to outsource its IT to a reliable IT partner. Did you know that you can take advantage of two types of outsourced IT: fully outsourced IT and co-managed IT? It’s important for your business to understand the differences when choosing the right service that will benefit your business.
So, do you understand the difference between these two services? Have no fear if you don’t—let’s take a deeper look into what fully outsourced IT and co-managed IT can bring to your table.
You have your own IT team, but you’re struggling to get tasks done, and your helpdesk tickets are getting out of control—what can you do? With co-managed IT, your team can take a collaborative approach to IT management with a third-party IT partner. Instead of tackling all your IT responsibilities, you can share the load with an expert who knows what they are doing. Under this method, your business can expect to gain expertise in areas that you might be lacking or provide slack to projects that need more attention. Your service provider might handle complex projects that require more concentration or just alleviate some common work that can help free up your in-house team.
- Either way, having a helping hand can benefit your business and allocate time where it’s needed the most.
Fully Outsourced IT
Say IT isn’t your cup of tea or you don’t have the capacity to manage your infrastructure in-house—are there options for this? Absolutely! With fully outsourced IT, you are giving the reins to an IT partner who will fully manage your IT infrastructure without the use of an internal IT team. Your newly appointed partner will take full responsibility for managing and maintaining all aspects of your IT including your hardware, software, networking, security and even IT support. You’ll receive proactive monitoring, while getting peace of mind knowing your systems are safe from cyberthreats. This approach can be suitable for businesses who don’t have the resources, expertise or time to manage their IT.
- Take the stress away from managing your IT, and partner with an expert who knows a thing or two about IT.
How We Can Help You Make the Right Decision
Now that you know the difference between fully outsourced IT and co-managed IT services, do you know what your business needs? The goal is to find a service that works for your business—that’s something we can help you figure out. Whether fully outsourced or co-managed IT, we have you covered. Take the guessing game out of your IT and partner with an MSP like us that can help you every step of the way. Contact us today to learn more about how our services can aid your business. We can’t wait to speak with you!
If you’d like to learn more on how we can help your business with IT, check out additional blogs in our resources section.
In today’s competitive society, businesses need to rely on a robust IT infrastructure to stay ahead of the competition. You can achieve your IT goals by partnering with the right people and utilizing efficient technology. When you have a business to manage, the last thing on your mind should be managing a streamlined IT infrastructure on your own.
Outsourcing IT can help your organization achieve its business goals and increase productivity, while keeping your data organized and protected. In this blog, we will take a closer look at how IT outsourcing can play a vital role in maintaining your business and the benefits that can help deliver growth-focused results.
What Does Outsourcing IT Mean?
Businesses who need additional help can outsource their IT to external, third-party partners. These services can aid in effectively delivering proper business processes, handling everyday administrative tasks or managing infrastructure solutions for the contracting business. The primary goal of outsourcing IT is to ensure that a business runs on a streamlined infrastructure without the worry of technological disruptions, glitches or security breaches.
By handing over the reins to an external partner, outsourcing can help reduce your IT workload and cut costs so you can focus on achieving your business goals.
The Top 5 Rewards of Outsourcing IT
There are many things that an external IT partner can assist your business with. From repetitive, everyday IT tasks to larger, more laborious tasks, including cloud migrations—you’ll find many rewards when it comes to outsourcing your IT.
Let’s take a more focused look into some of the top five rewards your business can achieve by partnering with an external IT company:
- Faster Resolution Times: Outsourced IT partners take a more proactive approach when it comes to your IT infrastructure. They are constantly monitoring and managing your systems to ensure your business stays up and running.
- Decreased Downtime: Downtime and disruptions can cost your business money. By having your outsourced IT team in your back pocket, you can expect reduced downtime and a faster turnaround if you are faced with a cyberattack.
- Greater Focus on Business Goals: You can offload administrative tasks to your external IT partner to better focus on your business’s goals and aspirations.
- Stronger Cybersecurity: Cyber criminals are becoming stronger and smarter with cyberattacks. Fortunately for you, your IT partner is well-versed in cybersecurity and will lend your solutions the protection it needs.
- Access to Experts: The great thing about outsourcing your IT is that you have access to a leading team of experts who have the skills, resources and talent to address all of your IT needs
IT service providers can deliver technical expertise to small businesses at a fraction of the cost of managing an internal IT team. If you haven’t considered outsourcing IT, you might want to take a closer look at the rewards and benefits of having an external team of experts at your disposal.
At MSPN, we will help assess your technology needs and work with you to streamline your IT infrastructure, all within your budget. Don’t wait to get the IT help your business needs—contact us today to learn more.
If you want to learn more about outsourcing IT, check out additional blogs in our resources section.
A proper business digital clean-up involves more than trashing old files and updating passwords. An effective business digital clean-up requires revisiting IT lifecycle management, security vulnerability assessments and backup and disaster recovery strategies to ensure your technology is up-to-date, secure and running efficiently. But what if you’re a small to medium-sized business owner without an internal enterprise-level IT department? It’s simple. You outsource the job to the professionals — a managed service provider.
Do You Really Need a Digital Clean-Up?
Have you ever considered what would happen if your IT systems went down for a few hours? What could that cost you? When you consider how much of your business is reliant on safe, reliable technology, performing a digital clean-up is a no-brainer. A managed service provider has the expertise, experience and manpower to perform a comprehensive digital clean-up on your systems, ensuring tech is lean and running smoothly.
1. IT Lifecycle Management
Your business depends on your IT running smoothly. But technology declines over time leading to lags, intermittent connectivity and even downtime. IT lifecycle management services provide a detailed inventory of your entire IT infrastructure so you can optimize every resource. That includes hardware like laptops, servers and devices, and software like Microsoft 365, as well.
IT Lifecycle Management Services Uncover:
- Lapsed warranty renewals, licensing purchases and firmware updates
- Root causes of slow, inefficient connectivity
- Broken or obsolete assets that require safe, secure disposal
- Underutilized assets
The more you know about your technology, its true value to your business and its stage of shelf life, the smarter you can be about tech spending.
2. Proactive Cybersecurity Services
A digital clean-up is the ideal opportunity to evaluate your security. Once you identify any hidden security gaps, you can address weak points and strengthen your overall cybersecurity defense. These are a few services IT professionals recommend:
- Dark Web Monitoring is pretty much what it sounds like. Trained IT professionals use specialized software to scan the dark web for your information. Should they find anything, they can act quickly to limit potential damage.
- Security Vulnerability Assessments are automated tests that scan your infrastructure for weak points that could be exploited. The process happens instantly and provides real-time visibility into potential flaws so they can be prioritized and addressed before they pose a serious risk.
- Penetrating Testing simulates a cyberattack on your business. Implemented by an experienced managed service provider, penetration testing can go a long way in identifying your most critical security weaknesses, namely human error.
3. Backup and Disaster Recovery Strategies
Finally, any worthwhile digital clean-up should include a re-evaluation of your backup and disaster recovery strategies. A managed services provider will ask questions like:
- When is the last time you tested your backup?
- Have your critical business assets and applications changed?
- If so, are you backing up that data?
- Have you updated your recovery plan to reflect changes in staff?
Every backup and disaster recovery plan requires regular, ongoing maintenance to be effective when you need it. If you don’t have the time or the resources to routinely maintain your technology, consider partnering with an MSP. Managed service providers are invaluable assets to small and medium-sized businesses with minimal or no internal IT resources. Increased productivity, decreased downtime and reduced costs are just a few of the benefits you can realize with this important, trusted partnership.
If you are looking to partner with an MSP, let’s talk. Our team of tech professionals is well versed in services and solutions to keep your business running at its best. Contact us today.