Ransomware attack

Business Owners Here’s how to spot a ransomware attack before it hurts your business.

One of the most dangerous things that can happen to your business is a ransomware attack.

Automated processes take control of your computers and encrypt all your data, and lock you out. They won’t undo the encryption unless you pay a big fee. Your business is held for ransom.

The reason they can do so much harm is they quietly break into your system a long time before the attack is launched. The one upside of this is you can keep an eye out for symptoms you’ve been breached if you know what to look for.

Here are three ways you can check to see if hackers are already in your network.

Contact Durham IT Services for assistance or for more information!

Free Cyber Crime guide for business owners

A simple guide for business owners to plan and protect your business from Cyber-Crime

Two years ago, two thirds of all businesses reported some type of incident relating to cyber-crime.

Business security is your responsibility as a business owner, and it doesn’t have to be difficult.

Fact: Your business needs to be as prepared as it can be against the threat of cyber-crime. You are at risk whether you think so or not.

Read our brand new guide now. And you’ll see our recommended 5 step plan to prepare for an attack, and protect your business.

Cyber Crime Guide for Business Owners

Click the image to download your free guide

Ever wanted to quickly save a screenshot of something on your screen? Follow these simple steps to be able to easily “snip” a portion of your screen to mark up and save for later or share!

  1. Type “Snip & Sketch” in the search bar in the bottom left corner of your computer:
    Snip n Sketch 1
  2. Select the “Snip & Sketch” app
    Snip and sketch 2
    *Shortcut* – to snip what is on your screen without having to open Snip & Sketch app first, simply press the Windows Logo Key + Shift + S.
  3. Select “New Snip” button located in the top left corner of the app: Snip n Sketch 3
  4. At the top of the screen, select the type of snip (rectangular, freeform, window or full screen) you would like to use:
    skip n sketch 4
  5. For the Rectangular and Freeform Clips, click + drag your cursor over the portion of your screen that you are wanting to capture. For the Window Clip, click on the window that you would like to capture:
  6. The captured picture will automatically show up in your Snip & Sketch app where you can make notes, highlight and mark up as you please:
  7. Save the picture onto your device either as a PNG, JPG or GIF using the “Save As” button in the top right corner of the app:
Durham IT Security services
Your business is at risk if you and your employees don’t have at least a basic understanding of IT Security risks.
You’ve heard the term phishing, we’re sure. It’s where hackers send you an email, pretending to be someone else (like your bank), to try to get sensitive information from you.
But what is vishing? And smishing? And whaling?
These are all forms of phishing designed to steal your business information, and ultimately your money. We explore each one in our brand new video.

Want to learn how to protect your business from these and other security risks? Contact Durham IT Services today at (905) 231-1303 or fill out the form to the right!

IT Budget Planning

With the world upside down, there has never been a better time to think about your Small Business IT budget.

In this article, we will outline where your budget can provide the best return on investment. Have a read through then contact us for a free IT assessment!

Staff Computers and Laptops

Probably the most significant allocation of the budget should go towards new or upgraded hardware.  This is a combination of replacing systems that have reached the end of life and systems that go faulty.

Most laptops and desktop computers last from 3 to 5 years before a replacement or upgrade is required.  Leaving the replacement period longer will have a negative “unseen” impact on your business in the form of lost productivity.

As time goes on, computer systems will slow down – and if staff have slower systems to work on, they won’t get as much work done.  It won’t be noticeable until a point is reached with a PC system becomes unusable.

Other hardware to budget for is potential servers and network equipment.  Again similar to PC’s 3-5 years is a good time to factor in renewal.

Software Licensing and Subscription

In the old days of IT, there was always a large upfront cost to software for business.  However, cloud solutions such as  Microsoft 365 have embraced the subscription model.

Now instead of paying a large chunk of money for a copy of Microsoft Office, a small subscription fee is charged per user per month.

This has two benefits – the first is that there is no high cost when you take on new staff and the second is that it allows you to be flexible in your approach to software licensing in your business.

Internet Connectivity

A good high speed internet line is critical for any business to work well.  Some companies even factor in built-in redundancy with more than one internet line to their office.  The beauty of a solution like this is that you can combine the lines for increased speed and if a line ever fails, you’ve got the other as a backup.

Business-grade lines usually come at a higher price than a standard home line.  This comes down to service level agreements with the internet provider.  If a fault is found or a line goes down, it’s in contract with the provider that they’ll have an escalation of 4 hours or less to fix the issue.

IT Support & Management

Most important in any IT budget is the support and management of the IT infrastructure.

Who is going to maintain and support the technology in your business?  Sometimes this is provided by an in house IT specialist depending on the business size.  However, most companies with staff headcount from 5-50 in size prefer to outsource their IT support and management to a company just like ours.

The main benefit of an outsources IT service offering is that you are working with experts in the field.  If a problem occurs, it’s fixed quickly and with a predictable cost attached to the service every month.

If you would like to find out more about how to budget your IT and are looking for an outsourced IT support provider, then we might just be the answer.  Give us a call at (905) 231-1303 or through our contact form!

Microsoft Teams by Durham IT Services

Microsoft Teams is the true hub for digital teamwork

There’s no better tool for boosting productivity, especially if you have employees who work together remotely. Microsoft Teams will give them the tools they need to meet, work, and collaborate in one central location.

Teamwork makes your business work!

By switching your staff’s communication away from email and into Microsoft Teams, it’ll be far easier to keep track of what’s going on with projects and much less info will get lost in inboxes. Microsoft Teams makes setting up calls and meetings a breeze, and provides everything you need to stay in touch with each other.

The speed that your staff will be able to share and collaborate on documents will be given a boost, as Teams works very nicely with other Microsoft apps like Word and PowerPoint. It also integrates with third-party apps too!

Ready to properly embrace Teams? We can help.

We’re the Durham Region experts for collaborative software and increasing productivity.

Call Durham IT Services today at 905-231-1303 to learn more about Microsoft Teams and all your IT Support needs!

Here’s how Windows 10 and Office 365 can improve your productivity and your bottom line! Contact us at 905-231-1303 to learn more.

Think Up Consulting is a young, fast-growing agency based in Greenville, South Carolina. The agency specializes in brand strategy, change management and strategic consulting to help global brands make deep, lasting connections with customers.

For Think Up, the ability to ensure seamless communication and reliable security while maximizing productivity are musts. To support these priorities, the company chose Office 365 to streamline internal processes and dramatically reduce the number of emails employees send.

A forward-thinking company, Think Up continues to explore and adapt new technology to help increase employee efficiency and better meet its customer’s needs.