Is Your Business Taking Care of Client Data?

Is Your Business Taking Care of Client Data?We’re all used to receiving dubious emails about obscure lottery wins, and thankfully, most of us are wise to the scams. But occasionally, these phishing emails slip through the net, and employees get caught out.

Scammers are using a range of tactics to try to capture payment and login details, and it’s up to you to ensure your employees know about the latest attacks. If you work in professional services, and you handle client data, you’ve got a responsibility to protect the security of that data as well as your own.

Types of Scams

Phishing scams have been used to dupe unwitting users for more than 20 years. The premise is simple: send people an email that looks legitimate, but embed a bogus link. When the user clicks through, they are tricked into entering their credit card information or login details, which are transmitted to the scammers and used to commit fraud.

Now, there’s a new type of scamming, called vishing – or ‘voice phishing – that involves telephone calls that sound legitimate. The scammer makes a call and poses as a member of staff at a bank, or a large IT company. They convince the user that there’s a problem with their account or computer, and tell them they have to provide their card details to proceed. Vishing has been in the media recently because large numbers of people have been conned out of money.

Businesses may also have noticed an increasing number of fake invoices and payment demands that are appearing in Inboxes and Spam folders. These emails are sent to trick new employees into paying non-existent clients. While most businesses will cross-reference payment demands with client accounts, a few of these bogus demands will inevitably slip through the net.

What You Can Do

In any organisation, the IT system needs to be robust enough to filter out threats. At Cloud4, we include free virus and spam filtering to capture as many dangerous emails as we can.

On top of the automated checks we offer, we recommend that you invest in staff training. You must educate your users so they recognise these scam attempts and act accordingly. Security training needs to be part of your induction program for all new employees, with a focus on front line staff that may be handling payments or login details in their role. Additionally, you should schedule refresher courses to communicate new scammer tactics as they arise.

Protecting Your Data

Scammers are looking for login details, passwords and access to your corporate network. A file on your computer could be a source of valuable information, or could unlock intellectual property that can be misused.

Keeping data safe is a joint effort between your business and its IT service providers. At Cloud4, we always do our bit to protect the valuable data assets your company depends on, ensuring your clients and employees are less likely to be hit by a phishing or vishing scam. Get in touch to find out more about the security and spam filters we provide.

Are You Thinking of Reversing Your Cloud Migration Project?

Are You Thinking of Reversing Your Cloud Migration Project?As the initial hype over cloud computing starts to level off, many businesses are settling in to using their services and adjusting to the many productivity and efficiency benefits. But there will inevitably be a few businesses that find transformation disruptive, and discover that the cloud has not delivered the benefits that had expected.

Cloud4 is used to supporting businesses in successful cloud migrations, and we have a near-100 per cent success rate in achieving cost savings and other benefits for our clients. To avoid risk, proper planning is the best way to ensure a successful migration.

Planning for Success

One of the most important things you need to do, before migrating to the cloud, is to look at where your organisation is and where it wants to be. This is called a gap analysis, and it’s critical to determine exactly what you want to achieve.

When businesses fail at migration, it’s often because they’ve skipped this step. They haven’t decided on the benefits they expect to see, or they haven’t looked at the challenges of getting from their current situation to the ‘ideal’. If you know which parts of your infrastructure may cause problems, you can anticipate risk and be prepared for it, which is a big part of ensuring success.

If you’re thinking of backing out from the cloud, make sure you’re sticking to the plan you formed at the beginning. Getting the important parts right will allow all the secondary cloud services to fall into place.

Winning Hearts and Minds

In your organisation, your most valuable employees are the ones that have been with you from the start. They’ve probably come up with tried and tested processes for getting their job done efficiently. It’s understandable that some people are sceptical of cloud migration. They might cling on to those old processes, despite the new tools you’ve rolled out to support them.

Planning a successful migration means getting everyone on board and selling the benefits of new solutions. It helps to have one person in each department that can support everyone else as the changes are brought in. You’ll also need to make sure everyone is confident with new systems and workflows, through training or robust support.

Some users might be reluctant to change, but as an organisation, you can win them over. The key is to make sure everyone understands how new systems will make their life easier, and inspire enthusiasm that will drive culture change and support a positive outcome. Even if you haven’t done this yet, don’t give up: persevere and you’ll soon see your employees come round to new ways of working.

The Right Cloud Provider

At Cloud4, we understand that you have a huge choice of vendors. Some businesses select just one partner, while others will pick and mix solutions from different companies. Whatever approach you use, you need providers that truly care about your business and are invested in your success.

Cloud4 provides comprehensive support during and after migration. Our team is here to support your business, and act as an add-on for your in-house technical team. If you need to get in touch, we offer email, telephone and live chat help through our website.

Cloud migration can be challenging, but it can also set you up for continued profitability. The challenges are well worth facing, with the support of a provider you can trust. If you need more advice, get in touch, and our experts will put your mind at ease.

If Your Laptop is Stolen Tonight, Will You Cope?

If Your Laptop is Stolen Tonight, Will You Cope?None of us likes to think about our homes or businesses being burgled or ransacked by an intruder. Yet the consequences are worth thinking about, simply as a preventative measure. While we don’t wish to tempt fate by suggesting your laptop could be stolen, what would you do if it actually was?

Would there be consequences for your clients? How much data would you lose? Would you be confident in the state of your backups, or does the thought leave you in a cold sweat?

We tend to be quite complacent about data, despite the fact we’re told to back it up on a daily – or, better, hourly – basis. In business, you need a reliable, affordable and flexible solution that will scale as your business grows.

Backing up is simple

In the bad old days, backing up a laptop meant connecting it to an external storage device. This was usually inconvenient, since early external drives had to be plugged into the mains beside the laptop. Without a docking station, many users simply didn’t bother to back up on a regular basis, and it’s only since we’ve had WiFi that we’ve been better at creating backups.

In business, many backups are still made on magnetic tape, or stored using on-site backup devices. But there are still risks in using these old-fashioned methods: they are slow, they are expensive, and they may not always work reliably. By the time your IT equipment has been stolen, it’s too late to do anything about it.

Trust the cloud

Cloud computing arguably gained traction because of cloud backup services, and the cloud is still one of the safest places to store your precious business data.

Cloud4’s hosted online backup services offer both storage and recovery capability. So you can upload data whenever you like, and easily retrieve it if the worst happens.

Cloud backup isn’t just for your Word documents and PowePoint presentations. You can upload the entire contents of your hard drive, or pick out applications that you want to back up.

Why Cloud4?

You’re probably aware that we have a number of competitors offering cloud backup services. But many of these services are designed for consumers who use their IT in a very different way.

Not only is their data different, but they way they connect is different too. Consumer cloud backup rarely offers you the robust uptime guarantees you need in business. Additionally, some service providers are not very clear on where they’re storing your data.

You can trust us with your critical business files, because we store it all within the UK in our ISO-certified data centres. In fact, in the event of a disaster, we can even despatch an engineer to get your data recovered – and they’ll be with you the same day.

How many consumer grade backup services can make a promise like that?

Affordable peace of mind

We hope that your laptop isn’t stolen, and we hope that your server room doesn’t suffer a power outage. But if it does, could your business cope with the consequences of losing its data?

Pricing for Cloud4’s cloud business backup starts at just £17.99 per month, and offers a genuine alternative to business on-site backup, external hard drives and tape-based storage. Once it’s up and running, just leave it to do its job: it really is a ‘set and forget’ solution.

To find out more, call our team for a chat on 0800 802 1989