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Cyber Security Training for Your Office

b2ap3_thumbnail_20150219_105742.jpgDoes your staff require continuing education credits? Do you need security awareness training as part of your HIPAA policy? Would you like to improve the productivity of your staff?

Total Networks offers on-site training that can tackle these needs and more.

Total Networks’ president Dave Kinsey will come to your office and present a training session tailored to your firm’s needs. Topics might include these issues:

  • How to avoid phishing scams
  • When and how to send secure email messages
  • Security precautions to avoid ransomware
  • What to do if you think you have been hacked
  • How to safely use Wi-Fi
  • How to create and store strong passwords
  • How to properly encrypt files

Total Networks’ team is the first and only Arizona IT company to earn the CompTIA Security Trustmark, certifying that Total Networks meets or exceeds security best practices. We will provide the training presentation, resources to leave with your staff, continuing education certificate, and food if desired. Give us a call at (602) 412-5025 or visit http://totalnetworks.com/training to get started!

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4 Scenarios Where Backup and Disaster Recovery is Optimal

b2ap3_thumbnail_save_your_business_with_backup_400.jpgThere are a number of disasters which could hamper your business’s continuity, but the most dangerous ones occur when you least expect it. Despite this, it’s not always clear that your business needs a data backup and disaster recovery solution until it’s too late. You stand to lose everything your business has worked so hard for by ignoring potential threats, many of which can be prevented by simple proactive measures.

At Total Networks, we’re all about taking advantage of technology to protect businesses like yours from crippling disasters. Our Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) solution is designed to help you stay in business even when you think you can’t go on.

Hardware Failures
The most glaringly obvious disaster that could happen to your business is a hardware failure. Technology isn’t meant to last forever, and it can be difficult judging when its time is up. If a server were to bite the dust due to lackluster maintenance practices or simple old-age hardware failure, you could lose countless files in the process. That’s not even mentioning the amount of cash you’ll fork over for a new unit, and the downtime left in its wake is the icing on the cake.

This is why it’s so important to utilize a BDR solution. In the event of a hardware failure, the BDR solution can act as a temporary server for your business. This lets you focus on acquiring a new server unit, or migrating your infrastructure to a virtual server in the cloud, without worrying about the immediate downtime following a disaster. A big project like this should be handled by professionals, so make sure to give Total Networks a call to find out how you can take advantage of virtualization.

Natural Disasters
Believe it or not, natural disasters do happen, and they can be detrimental to your business. Floods, fires, earthquakes, and tornadoes can all destroy expensive equipment which is vital to your business’s operations. If this equipment is destroyed, you’ll be stuck in a position akin to hardware failure, where you’ll be forced to deal with excessive downtime and loss of data.

That is, if you’re not using a BDR solution. With this device, your business’s data is backed up externally and internally, multiple times a day, making sure that your data is always redundant. Following the disaster, you’ll be able to use these backups to get back in business with minimal data loss.

Hackers
One of the more likely disasters for your business could be the result of a hacker either infiltrating your network or throwing malware your way. Viruses and malware have varying degrees of damage, with the worst potentially disabling your technology and making it unusable. Sometimes it’s easier to get rid of a problem like this by wiping your system completely. However, this solution also wipes out any data that was being stored on the system.

The only true solution to this issue is to use the BDR to recover your lost information from the last clean backup taken. This helps you recover from a machine-wiping disaster fairly easily, again, with minimal downtime and data loss.

User Error
Just when you thought you had all of your bases covered, a staff member can go in and save over an important file or corrupt a critical spreadsheet. Whether this is an act of malevolence or an honest mistake, it’s important to have your data backed up so a simple restore can save your day.

These are just four common scenarios where Total Networks’s BDR solution is helpful. For more information on how to take advantage of a BDR for your business’s data infrastructure, give us a call at (602)412-5025. You’ll know that in the event of the worst, your data is being handled by the best.

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How Managed IT Services Improve Your Company’s Customer Service

b2ap3_thumbnail_msps_help_provide_great_customer_service_400.jpgOne common characteristic about small-to-medium sized businesses is that they’re often stretched thin. When your company is pulled every which way, certain aspects of it begin to suffer. One area that should never suffer is customer service. Managed IT service can make things easier on your staff so they can focus on what’s important, like better serving your clients.

If your SMB is growing, you probably have a computer network that’s experiencing growing pains. If these technology pains and challenges aren’t addressed and maintained, they will only get worse and spread across your system. If you don’t have a dedicated staff member to oversee these technology needs, then by default, the responsibility will fall on the shoulders of your staff using the technology that don’t likely specialize in it, or worse, you.

When people on your sales team are managing network security, or your marketing staff is overseeing your IP communications, then two things will happen:

  1. Their job performance will suffer.
  2. They will do a poor job managing your company’s technology.

As a business owner, you may think that a move like this is the way to go because it will save you money, but when looking at the big picture, it will cause other areas of your business model to suffer, which in turn, will hinder growth and cost you much more in the long run.

Laurie McCabe, vice president of small and medium-sized business insights and solutions for the research firm AMI-Partners, explains this to InformationWeek: “A lot of small businesses think it’s cheaper to do everything themselves, but employees can get overloaded, and they may not be in a good mood when interacting with your customers.”

McCabe goes on to make a point that should make every DIY business owner reconsider their ways: “And if you’re not doing a good job at something, your competition probably is.” Translation, if your team is too bogged down with technical responsibilities that they can’t focus on providing your clients with outstanding customer service, then your clients will eventually interact with your competitors that have the ability to better serve their needs.

By outsourcing your company’s IT needs to Total Networks, we’re able to remotely take care of IT maintenances, network security, and more, so that your team doesn’t have to. This will allow them to focus on what’s important, doing exactly what you hired them to do, and doing it well. When your staff is able to reach their full potential and provide your customers outstanding service, your business will soar because it won’t be tied down by technology problems.

To optimize your company’s technology so that it will meet the unique needs of your business, give Total Networks a call at (602)412-5025.

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Should You Cut the Telephone Cord?

b2ap3_thumbnail_get_a_new_phone_system_400.jpgModern businesses prioritize in improving communications because they understand it will lead to more coherent operations and greater profits. Therefore, your business needs a communication solution that’s customizable to meet your unique needs. The one-size-fits-all approach just doesn’t work for business-to-business telecommunications, and your company should not be subjected to this outdated approach.

This is why businesses are embracing the feature-rich and customizable VoIP solution that empowers companies to do more with their phone system. VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), utilizes your company’s Internet connection to send and receive data packets, which is a more affordable and economical way than depending on traditional phone systems.

One way that traditional phone systems fall short of serving the needs of small-to-medium sized businesses is by limiting companies to communication packages that provide more phone features than they may need, while making it expensive to upgrade to a different package that includes features that a business would like to have.

This limited-options approach to telecommunications is the same strategy used by cable companies, which are notorious for not listening to their customers. In fact, the cable television industry is seeing a dramatic decline as more customers are wising up and “cutting the cord.”

Instead of depending on broadcast television, more consumers are turning to their Internet connection and streaming their entertainment. One reason for this is because the Internet allows a viewer to simply select which television programs they want to view, instead of having to upgrade to a next-level entertainment package so they can watch their favorite program–not to mention all of those dang commercials!

Notice a correlation here? The appeal of saving money while gaining access to one’s preferred television programs is fueling the cord-cutting trend, and the television industry is taking a huge hit for their oversight. With VoIP, all of the most essential features are offered in the basic package (unlike the dozen-or-so-useless channels offered with basic cable), and upgrading to a more feature-rich package is easy to switch to and easy on the budget. As IDC Research Manager Amy Lind explains to Processor magazine:

In the basic host VoIP tier, the following features are standard: unlimited local/domestic long-distance calling, auto-attendant, call waiting, call forwarding, caller ID, voicemail, and voicemail-to-email. The availability of other features varies widely depending on service provider and what type of advanced features the provider might bundle together such as simultaneous ring, sequential ring/find-me follow-me (receiving calls according to location and on any number of devices), and more.

Not surprisingly, the traditional phone companies that once dominated the telecommunication industry are looking elsewhere for profits, like mobile technology. In fact, many industry experts are even predicting that, in the not-too-distant future, landline phones will be a thing of the past as Internet-based communication solutions like VoIP take their place. This VoIP revolution is already well underway, with 79 percent of American businesses using VoIP phones at one location (six years ago this figure stood at 42 percent).

Like any service, VoIP offers additional features for your business to take advantage of if you want to upgrade to a more feature-rich package. But unlike other services, like cable and traditional landline phones, your company can afford a higher-tier VoIP package because of how much your business can potentially save with VoIP. In many cases, businesses that switched to VoIP from traditional phone services charging for long-distance phone calls have seen savings upwards of 80 percent.

To get an affordable VoIP package that fits the communication needs of your business, call Total Networks at (602)412-5025.

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