Archive for July, 2014:

Conquer Your Customers’ Online Security Concerns With These Measures

Posting Date: 07/15/2014  |   Filed Under: Internet, Security, Technology  |   No Comments
Tags: , ,

shutterstock_174697943 (2)

 

We live in an era where online privacy is dwindling. But it’s also an era of consumer empowerment, where average people are taking control of their online behaviors and protecting themselves against unnecessary outside intrusion. Consumers are concerned in light of the recent news of the National Security Agency’s snooping, the Heartbleed bug and other cyber security issues.

The 2014 Internet Security Threat Report suggested targeted attacks increased 91 percent in 2013 and 552 million identities were exposed to breaches. E-commerce businesses have started feeling the pressure to provide more secure sites to protect customers’ data. Companies that have access to their customer’s credit card numbers and other personal information online should take extra care, given the recent data breaches, to make sure customers are safe.

Block Hackers

E-commerce sites are easy targets for hackers. Small businesses are particularly vulnerable, as oftentimes, the budget for a highly sophisticated data security system simply isn’t there.

CIO.com says that an e-commerce platform should use a “sophisticated object-orientated programming language” Open-source platforms can be made inaccessible to hackers based on the strength of that language. CIO.com has two other key suggestions: 1. Use a secure connection at checkout, and 2. Avoid storing sensitive data. Online purchases should be protected by Secure Sockets Layer, more commonly known as SSL, which authenticates transactions and encrypts the data; this is most commonly where hackers breach the system, so storing credit card numbers and similar information could be catastrophic in the event of a breach.

Server Message Block technology, or SMB, is also a popular tool for e-commerce businesses that applies “more modern and nimble applications that allow them to move quickly” when securing data, according to Heather Clancy of Small Business Matters.

Even WordPress has similar solutions for small businesses. The Krux SMB plugin, for example, is designed to authenticate and secure data sent through your site via social media channels.

Promote Online Safety

Any of these security measures could easily be explained via your company’s website to increase consumer confidence; it’s actually pretty common for wary shoppers to verify your platform’s security before entering any personal information. By providing resources to your customers on staying safe and secure online, you’re also advocating that they take control of their personal data and prepare for the unexpected. For example, Aol has partnered with identity theft company Lifelock to offer a complimentary protection advantage plan benefit for Aol members. Lifelock also caters to businesses of all sizes to protect internal data.

Like the security features noted above, some companies are listing their protection measures for customers to learn how they can fully secure their online information. As an online merchant or e-commerce business, it’s important to engage conversation with customers about how your company is protecting their data. Be transparent about the security measures you’ve taken and encourage customers to seek additional assistance from outside companies. In the end, concerned customers will see your company as open, honest and allied in the fight against online thieves.

Remote Monitoring and Maintenance Can Help Your Business

Lately, there has been a lot of buzz around RMM meaning Remote Monitoring and Support otherwise called Proactive Monitoring. Let’s  investigate what this term implies and how it can enhance and profit your business.

Remote Monitoring and Maintenance – What is it?

RMM is watching your technology 24/7. It keeps an eye on your network and servers to get a perspective on the overall status of your technology. This technology checking creates alerts on a real time basis with the specific end goal of identifying issues that require remedial attention. This type of corrective action can take place rapidly before the problem can even affect the business.

How Can Your Business Benefit From Remote Monitoring and Maintenance?

Early Identification of Problems: When you have measures set up to proactively identify problems within your technology system, you have the chance to amend the issues before they can negatively impact your business. Additionally, RMM can draw your attention to problems that could negatively impact customer satisfaction, productivity by your employees and ultimately the financial bottom line of your business.

Manage Costs: Being proactive about your business’ technology systems enables you to get a handle on the life expectancy of your equipment. If equipment is reaching the end of its life span, a business owner can start budgeting in advance for the inevitable replacement of aging technology. Planning in advance will pre-empt expensive emergency repair bills from an IT service provider. Furthermore, you can manage your expenses and work flow when you plan for the update of technology and systems.

Manage Productivity of Employees: As a business owner, consider how your employees use their time. Keep your employees’ workflow maximized by handling upgrades to the equipment after work hours. RMM’s proactive alerts will let you on how an employee’s equipment is functioning and will let you know when a problem is brewing. This will help you maintain a strategic distance from technical fiascos.

Start Advancing Your Business and Stop Just Surviving: Does your IT Service professional spend all of their simply putting out fires. This leaves no to execute new innovations and produce real results. Change and innovation are critically important to the success of your business. This is what is going to enable your business to move to the next level. When you stop putting out technology fires every day, you can redirect your efforts to discovering new approaches that will develop and enhance your business.

Enhance Your Business Knowledge:  Enhance your business management skills by understanding how all of the equipment and supplies function within your business. When RMM is implemented into your business, a thorough technology appraisal is activated. The results enable both the business owner and the IT professional to have a comprehensive understanding of how the technology is functioning. This provides a snapshot of how the technology is serving or actually thwarting your business processes and objectives.

Now you are armed with a reasonable understanding of RMM’s capabilities and how it can profit your business. Contact your local Geeks On Call expert and ensure that you are being proactive with your business’ technology.

Is Your Business Taking Advantage of a Remote Support Solution?

Posting Date: 07/09/2014  |   Filed Under: Technology, Uncategorized  |   No Comments
Tags:

Not that long ago the term “remote” generally referred to something far removed in space or time. The term was used to describe anything from distant cousins to someone living in a cabin in the middle of nowhere. Definitions certainly change over time. Currently, the term remote is most commonly used in the context of technology. Nearly all household gadgets ranging from our flat screen entertainment units to garage doors openers are operated via hand held remote control devices. In the realm of computers and smartphones there is remote access; remote support; remote desktop; remote iPhones; remote backups, remote monitoring and management; etc. Many of these services and features have enhanced the efficiency of daily life to the point that it’s hard to remember a time before remote technology.

Let’s review what remote support is and how it can benefit your business.

What is Remote Support?

Remote support enables a technical support representative to access an end-user’s computer via a secure internet connection. The technician who is working from a remote location could be sitting in front of a computer across town or on the other side of the country. The end-user permits access to their computer and this enables the technician to diagnose problems, perform repairs and handle updates. Using remote support, the computer never moves and no one even needs to get up from their chair.

Another facet of remote support is screen sharing. Screen sharing enables both the technician and the end-user to have access to the desktop at the same time. On the shared computer screen, the technician types the next steps in the process that guides the end-user through the repair session. It’s almost like sitting side-by-side with a technician who is explaining why you are having a particular computer problem and how it’s going to be fixed. Frequently, the end-user actually makes the repair under the guidance of the technician who supervises the process via the screen sharing function. As consumers, most of us are familiar with on-line “live chat” sessions that help us through a variety of technical questions with products and accounts. You can think of remote support as having a friendly co-pilot onboard helping you with the navigation details.

How a Remote Support Solution Can Benefit Your Business

Remote support offers businesses several key benefits that include the following:

Cost savings can be achieved by accessing IT support only when it’s actually needed. A full time IT staff member is no longer needed. You can eliminate the salary, employee benefits, sick days and vacation time of a full-time IT staff member. You can trade that expense for working with a skilled IT technician as needed. This can be a serious cost savings while receiving top quality on-demand technical service.

Efficiency will be enhanced by using remote support for certain types of repairs. Not every computer problem requires a technician traveling to your location. When a computer problem arises, contact a technician via remote support and the troubleshooting session can begin promptly. This can eliminate appointments, travel and downtime while waiting for IT assistance. Remote support is also easily available when you are working from home or traveling. Don’t get stuck struggling with computer problems during an important business trip. As long as you have internet service, you can take advantage of real-time remote support.

Flexibility is critical because many employees are using not only their office desktops, but also laptops and a variety of mobile devices. The “bring your own device” movement has created greater needs for technical support that is skilled across a variety of platforms. Remote support offers flexibility and convenience, while also delivering secure service and support session audit history.

Is Your Business Ready for Remote Support?

Business owners need to be aware of new IT solutions that can save time, money and resources while increasing the efficiency of their business. Remote support is a strategy that can deliver results and help your business stay competitive. Take control of your business with a remote support solution.

Give your local Geeks On Call office a call today and one of our technology professionals will be happy to show you how remote support can help your business become more efficient.