Work Smarter Not Harder

Date:

Author

Category: Business, Cloud Computing, Mobile Computing.

We believe that businesses of all sizes can start to work smarter and more productively by embracing the concept of remote working and really harnessing the power of technology.

Many companies have been reticent about using remote working, and it’s not really expensive or difficult to implement. Companies of every size need to evaluate where and how greater connectivity can improve their business

Having access to systems, files and emails whilst away from the office brings a range of business benefits and cost savings – from increased productivity and greater staff motivation to more effective use of time.  So, what can you do?

Enable your staff to work from anywhere…

An amazing 80 per cent of businesses report that employees do not have full access to business systems that would make their work easier and more efficient, including the technology to work away from the office.  The ability to work effectively from almost any location is one of the biggest changes happening in workplaces today and can increase productivity significantly.

Read more »

Heartbleed Bug

Date:

Author

Category: IT Security, Latest.

If some of the headlines from the past week or so are to be believed, all our email accounts and social network sites are easy targets and the information about us they contain are just waiting to be hacked to within an inch of their lives at any time with little anyone can do about it.

But don’t panic just yet. It might not be as bad as you think.

So before you start saying Farewell to Facebook or “ta-ra” to Twitter, here’s a little more information about the Heartbleed bug, what it does, how it works and how you might be able to fight it.

1. What is the Heartbleed Bug?

Basically, the Heartbleed bug allows anyone on the internet to read the memory of the systems protected by the vulnerable versions of the OpenSSL software. It’s official name is CVE-2014-0160 and allows an attack to read information from a web server even when it’s supposed to be secured against intrusion. The bug affects an OpenSSL extension known as “heartbeat” which makes it possible to keep a secure communication channel open without re-negotiating security protocols.

Read more »

5G Questions

Date:

Author

Category: IT News.

4G may still be a relatively new phenomenon, but already there is talk of 5th generation broadband being a real possibility in as little as five years time.

While much of the world has yet to experience the full benefits of 4G services, technologically-obsessed South Korea has already announced a £900million investment to fund its successor, while Chinese firm Huawei is also spending $600 million on 5G research between now and 2018.

And at the same time Prime Minister David Cameron has announced plans to introduce 5G to the UK thanks to a partnership with Germany as the world prepares for a “new industrial revolution.”

But despite all the talk and promises of huge funding there are still people wondering exactly what it is that’s getting everyone so excited?

So if you’re still a little confused about what 5G can actually offer you and how it will change your life, here are the answers to just a few of those burning questions:

Read more »

Rolling Dice

Date:

Author

Category: Data Backup, IT News.

This week saw World Backup Day, so are you still gambling with your I.T?

When you left for work this morning did you lock up your home? Did you lock up your car in the car park or your cycle to the railings? Of course you did, after all you do’nt want anyone ransacking your home or stealing your transport do you? At work you may have a password on your computer, or codes to get you into various parts of the building.

What if I told you that you were still leaving the door wide open for a malicious attack that could literally cripple your business within hours?

Way back in February of 2013 I wrote a blog asking people not to be the hacker’s best friend and now it is time for a reminder. Since publishing that post, we have been approached nearly every week by a business whose website has disappeared or been pointed to another less than family-friendly site – the heart-breaker is that some of these are our clients, who we have regularly reminded to take backups and perform updates.

Read more »

Windows XP

Date:

Author

Category: IT News.

On 8 April Microsoft will finally cease its support for the struggling operating system Windows XP – a decision that’s bound to be met with a mixed reception around the world.

The software, launched in 2001, is still installed on a third of all PCs globally and only Windows 7 (released in 2009) has managed to have any real impact on its usage, being installed on just under half of all PCs today.

But Microsoft would much prefer that people were using the very latest OS, Windows 8.1 as XP has become known as something of a “zombie”.

In fact, its demise has been a long time coming. Microsoft even released an XP End of Support Countdown Gadget just to make sure everyone knew it was soon to be defunct – and this news could be the gentle nudge that PC users have needed to encourage them to upgrade.

So if you’re one of the many users still loyal to XP, be prepared for vultures in the form of hackers, viruses and malware to begin circling over the rotting corpse of XP as Microsoft stop releasing security patches and updates for the soon to be deceased software.

But what has caused this long overdue fall from grace?

Read more »

Office for iPad

Date:

Author

Category: IT News, Microsoft Office.

Shares in Microsoft have soared following rumours that their Office suite will soon be available to use on the iPad.

So is there any truth in this latest round of Microsoft-Apple gossip? Well, it seems we won’t have to wait long to find out.

Reuters recently reported that Microsoft had a full version of its Office suite ready to release for on iOS, it just wasn’t sure when the company would make the announcement. Well, the answer could well come sooner rather than later.

Microsoft is holding a media event on Monday March 24th in San Francisco to announce what it called “some news related to the intersection of cloud and mobile”.

Read more »

internet cable

Date:

Author

Category: IT News.

On 12 March, 1989 Tim Berners-Lee was working at the Swiss physics laboratory Cern when he produced a technical paper which was the blueprint for The World Wide Web (you may have heard of it).

The immediate response to this ultimately life changing proposal was somewhat underwhelming as his boss commented: “Vague, but exciting”.

Yet 25 years on nobody could have imagined just how revolutionary, groundbreaking and “exciting” this technological breakthrough was to become.

The web has gone from being something that no one had heard of to something none of us can live without – all in a quarter of a century.

From one basic website to almost 200 million around the globe, here are 10 defining moments in the evolution of the World Wide Web – some of which have enabled you to read this blog from the comfort of your home or office.

Read more »

Date:

Author

Category: Customer Service, IT Support.

 

My Brother is a Bit of a Whizz…

… and he tends to help out if I have a problem – so I don’t really need IT Support.

I have heard that phrase (and its slight variations – after all it’s sometimes a cousin) so very often that my heart goes out to all those ‘Bit of a whizz’ relatives out there!

Being married to one such ‘whizz’ I know only too well what it’s like for them.  Friends, relatives and neighbours alike will call whenever there’s an IT panic on for them and, more often than not, expect him to give up some spare time to get them sorted out.

The trouble is – not all computer support problems can be sorted really quickly – and they might happen just when he’s settling down for some hard-earned time off with the
family.

PCSG-Engineers-helping-small-business-compressedSo – on behalf of those ‘Bit of a Whizzes’ everywhere AND to help YOU avoid unmitigated business disaster, here’s what you might want to consider before saying you ‘don’t need Computer Support’:

Think about your PC-savvy relative or friend …

  • Is he/she highly qualified and experienced?  It’s a highly specialised area, and all their hard work over the years is surely worth remuneration – should they REALLY be giving it away FOC?
  • When he/she has put in a full day of Techie Support for businesses – do they REALLY want more of it at home?
  • Are you the ONLY person who calls on them?  They may get a bit swamped with these sorts of requests and be far too polite to say anything!
  • What if something goes very wrong and you lose everything on your PC – which results in the loss of your business.  What’s that going to do to your relationship with your ‘whizz’? Is it really fair to put that level of responsibility on them in the first place?

Think about YOU and YOUR BUSINESS …

  • Is your friend or relative doing PRO-ACTIVE maintenance work on your IT system to ensure things have less chance of going wrong in the first place; saving you time and money?
  • Is your technical friend monitoring your back ups and anti-virus?
  • Do you know what qualifications and experience your ‘whizz’ truly has? Are they currently working in computer support?  If not, how are they keeping up with industry changes that may affect your computer systems?
  • Do they have server experience?
  • Can you get hold of them every minute of the working day?
  • Do they never get sick or go on holiday?
  • Is the software they have installed legitimate? Not only does pirated software pose a threat to you and your business from a legal perspective, it also can’t be updated which means it is vulnerable to virus and malware attacks which could bring your IT system to a standstill.

There are certain things that make a lovely addition to your business – a coffee machine, a water cooler, a good photocopier … but your Computer(s) are not one of these ‘nice’ additions.  They are ESSENTIAL.  Without them you may not have a business.  You may be able to ignore the dust if the cleaner calls in sick – but you’re going to need ongoing maintenance and reliable IT support to keep your business in operation!

Pam Case is the Brand Ambassador at The PC Support Group and loves letting people know how we can help them with their IT systems

– See more at: http://www.pcsupportgroup.com/blog/i-dont-really-need-it-support/#sthash.e8n3Nv0U.dpuf

PC Support

Date:

Author

Category: Customer Service, IT Support.

By Guest Blogger Peter Dean of Debayne Web Design

When setting up a new business the emphasis is often on costs. Thanks to the recent re-emergence of EU funding, there may be some help available and many small banks are now onside offering free banking whilst you find your feet – even small loans to help you on your way.

Because the focus in these early days is often on watching every penny going in and out, there is a temptation to ignore or skate around some issues that, in time, could prove to be a huge blow to the business. One such potential issue is that of protecting the data stored on computers.

When you think of it, many business computers get rather a bad deal, every day they pop into life and perform all of the many tasks that you throw at them with ease and precision, day in day out, many for years at a time.

Read more »

Sins of IT Support Companies

Date:

Author

Category: IT News, IT Support.

Does your IT Support ensure your systems are good enough OR do they ensure that they are actually giving you a competitive advantage?

If something goes wrong – do you rest assured that you have an IT support partner you can rely on?

Not sure?  Then consider these seven signs that mean it’s time to consider a new IT support partner…

1. You only talk to your IT Support when something goes wrong

A good IT support firm will perform preventative maintenance to reduce the chance of things breaking in the first place. You should feel able to turn to them for advice whenever you need it – do you have unlimited telephone contact during each working day all in with the price of your contract?

In short, they should be more than The Emergency Service for your business-critical computers. If they’re not, you can almost certainly get better value elsewhere.

Read more »