3 IT Investments You Should NEVER Skimp On

What is standing between your business’s data and hackers a world away? What’s your plan when your on-site server fails?

When you skimp on technology and IT solutions for your business, the answers to these two questions are simple: 1) There is nothing standing between your business’s sensitive data and people who want to take advantage of that data; and 2) There is no plan.

It happens way too often. Businesses cheap out on certain aspects of their technology to save a few bucks up-front. You may even know someone who has done just this. They jump at the chance to outfit their office with a huge monitor and a PC with top specs (even though they don’t need it) and then they decide that IT security isn’t a priority. They aren’t willing to pull out the credit card for a security solution because they don’t want to deal with a monthly or yearly cost.

But skimping on security can cost them dearly in time, money, resources and clients. When it comes to investing in IT, here are three things you never want to cheap out on.

SECURITY. Far too many businesses – from small to large – underinvest in IT security. We touch on this topic a lot because we see it a lot. These are business owners and managers who fall into the mindset of “It won’t happen to me.” This is a dangerous line of thinking.

For small businesses, a data breach can be devastating. Not only is data compromised and potentially copied or stolen, but your clients will also immediately question whether or not they should trust you. There’s a good chance they end up taking their business elsewhere – and they may even sue you.

When IT security isn’t a priority and you invest in the cheapest option available, it’s like asking hackers to let themselves in. One study by the security firm Imperva, found that over 50% of all Internet traffic is made by bots. Many of these bots are looking for security holes. They test websites and networks, looking for a way in. If they find their way in, they can do some serious damage.

Investing in solid IT security – with an experienced team of IT specialists behind that security – can prevent that damage from ever happening in the first place. It’s not only about protecting your business assets but also your clients.

BACKUPS. You keep all of your data on-site with no backups. It’s all stored in one central location and that’s it. This is a recipe for disaster if you get hacked, but it can be an even bigger disaster if a hard disk or server fails.

It’s even better to go a step further and have a backup for the backup. Have one on-site solution and one cloud-based solution. Even if the backup to the backup is as simple as a 4TB hard drive from Amazon, it has the potential to save your business should anything go wrong. Of course, you also need a system in place to make sure data is being regularly and accurately updated.

UPDATES. How old is your technology? Think about the hardware you’re running – and the software on that hardware. Letting your technology fall behind the times can spell trouble. Not only are you opening yourself up to security vulnerabilities, but you may also be operating on technology that’s no longer supported by the developers.

If the developers are no longer publishing updates or supporting the software, this is a huge security red flag that you need to update. On top of that, should you or an employee need to troubleshoot a piece of unsupported software, you may find yourself going up against walls. There might be no one to call, and if a Google search doesn’t help, you may be out of luck.

The potential headaches don’t end there. If you’re running unsupported software on shiny, new hardware, you may be voiding the warranty of that hardware (always check your warranties and the fine print of any hardware you buy).

Alternatively, if you’re trying to run brand-new software on old hardware, chances are you’re going to run into compatibility issues. That wonderful piece of software might not work, or work the way you expected it to, all because you didn’t want to update your old hardware.

It’s not always fun to reach into your pocketbook to invest in good IT security, cloud backup storage or new hardware, but when you cut corners and cheap out, you will end up paying for it later, one way or another. When that bill comes, it’s going to be a lot bigger than if you had committed to those IT investments in the first place.

For a FREE network audit to double-check your network is secure, your data backed up, and your equipment updated, call 724.235.8750 or email Leia@intechit.net

Clients are WOW-ed by the audit, reports, and recommendations.

Get CLE & CPE Credits!

Join Leia and a Host of Great Speakers at the George Harris Education Seminar

Wednesday, August 21st, 8AM-4:30PM
Edgewood Country Club
100 Churchill Road, Churchill, PA 15235

Earn 8 CPE Credits or 6.5 CLE Credits!

Call George Harris Seminars at 412.334.7726 to reserve your spot today!

This seminar has been approved by the State Board of Accountancy

FREE Report: Questions You Should Ask Any IT "Expert" Before Letting Them Touch Your Network

How can you tell if you are going to receive poor or substandard service? How do you know if your computer guy or network consultant is doing everything possible to secure your network from downtime, viruses, data loss or other frustrating and expensive disasters? Could your current provider actually be jeopardizing your network?

USE THIS LIST AND ASK THESE QUESTIONS

Claim Your FREE Copy Today at www.intechit.net/whattoask/

Shiny New Gadget Of The Month:
Drone X Pro

People are constantly looking for creative ways to express themselves, document their daily lives, share their adventures with their loved ones, and immortalize the most precious memories…

Nowadays, it’s not so easy to stand out from the crowd, but there’s finally one assured way to do it – and we call it DroneX Pro!

DroneX Pro was created with simplicity in mind so that everyone could use it. There’s no need for heavy, bulky devices anymore – DroneX Pro’s well-thought-out and ultra-compact design allows you to carry it wherever you go since it can easily fit in your pocket! Despite its size and portability, DroneX Pro provides you with the most valuable features of high-quality drones and turns the process of taking pictures into an incredibly fun experience!

4 Reasons CEOs Should Plan For Failure And Encourage Risk-Taking

Every successful company leader will tell you that failure is a part of business,

but far fewer will admit they plan for failure. Growing a business requires taking risks, and failure is a frequent outcome on the journey to achieving success.

In their best-selling book Switch, co-authors and brothers Chip and Dan Heath describe how world-renowned design firm IDEO (perhaps best known for its work with Apple) plans for failure during its design process. The company’s designers even created a process chart that factors in the excitement and hope at the beginning, the emotional lows of when things aren’t going as planned and the joy of victory at the end.

It’s a brilliant way to view risk-taking and how leaders can plan for failure while on the road to success.

1. Plan For Failure By Knowing The Risks

When taking a risk, make sure it’s a calculated one. Evaluate the upsides and downsides and what they mean to your business. Have answers to key questions like: does the undertaking align with your company’s vision and mission? Do the activities and tasks support company goals and priorities? Did we plan for failure, and do we know how to respond if things go sideways? Remember, a failure that is aligned with your business’s goals is still a step in the right direction.

2. Learn From Your Mistakes

Every failure experienced will provide important lessons for your business. Roll up your sleeves and find out what went wrong. Were your expectations incorrect? Did you misjudge the market? Was your strategy off? Be brutally honest about the hows and whys, but don’t dwell on it or point fingers. Get your team together to determine the necessary changes and move forward.

3. Celebrate Failure

Failure is part and parcel of running a business. Failure means you’re taking action to grow. Celebrate each failure by publicly applauding team members who had the courage to take a chance and accept the consequences. Hold a “failure party” or create an award to foster a positive attitude toward smart risk-taking.

4. Encourage Open Discussion About Failure

All business leaders have failed at some point during their careers. To foster a culture of smart risk-taking, encourage team members to share their highs and lows about projects where they took a chance. Make it acceptable to talk about mistakes. It will create a more open and creative environment and help build healthier teams.

In today’s world where business seems to move at the speed of sound, the biggest risk is not taking any risk at all. Few, if any, business leaders have succeeded by sticking to their original idea. A planned, detailed strategy to deal with failure will keep your team energized and in a positive mindset when they tackle the next big idea.

Andy Bailey is the founder, CEO and lead business coach at Petra, an organization dedicated to helping business owners across the world achieve levels of success they never thought possible. With personal experience founding an Inc. 500 multimillion-dollar company that he then sold and exited, Bailey founded Petra to pass on the principles and practices he learned along the way. As his clients can attest, he can cut through organizational BS faster than a hot knife through butter.

Need NIST 800-171/DFARS Compliance?

For businesses in the DoD Supply Chain who need to comply with DFARS/NIST 800-171 Security Protocols, InTech provides Risk Assessments, Security Audits, Compliance Audits, Plans of Action, and Remediation to bring YOU into compliance and assure you keep your contracts. Start the process today with a free, no obligation survey to get an idea of what you need to do to come into compliance. Go to www.intechit.net/NISTassessment and take just 5 minutes to jump start compliance.

Sometimes It Pays To Be Broke

Leia Shilobod learning from mentor & ABC Shark Tank Investor Daymond John

I was beyond thrilled to meet yet another Shark from ABC’s Shark Tank this summer.  Daymond John, founder of FUBU, mentor, and business investor, did not disappoint in lessons he dished out.

He talked about his book, The Power of Broke, in which he outlines how many people climbed to the top and built amazing businesses while starting from ‘broke.’

While that sounds strange, what you see when you look deeper is that what he’s REALLY talking about is the theory of constraints, but not the one you might be thinking of.

When you’re broke you have less options and you chose the ones that will lead to success. You aren’t lazy with your choices if you want to succeed, because you CAN’T or you’ll be ruined.

When you have a lot of money and a lot of choices you get lazy with how you spend you money and what choices you make.

In psychology studies, they have found that assumption that constraints kill creativity is false; instead teams should accept and embrace them, as there is freedom in constraint.

This concept has been implemented at business giants, such as Google, where they assemble small teams and take away their ability to make certain choices, decisions, and resources. This stimulates creativity and ingenuity.

How can you bring “broke” to your business with out “going broke?”

Consider giving yourself a tight budget for a project, or a tight timeline. Restrict access to certain resources (such as a computer or the internet during a brainstorm), or access to certain talent.

Try it out and see the creative juices flow! “Broke” your way to success!

To your continued success,