Sins of IT Support Companies

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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.

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Facebook Farewell

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Category: IT News.

Did you know that Facebook recently celebrated its 10th Birthday?

Where would we be without 10 years of “pokes”, “likes”, and status updates that have kept us riveted regarding the goings-on of people we barely even know?

Probably a whole lot better off, actually. But that’s not the point.

Facebook has certainly changed the way many of us live our lives and connect with friends and family, but I wouldn’t start planning for its 20th celebrations just yet if I were you.

The site that put social networking on the map may have been conceived in a  Harvard dorm room, before going on to become one of the biggest success stories in recent history with 1.23 billion active users – but already there are dissenting voices suggesting it won’t see another 10 years.

If recent studies are to be believed, Facebook’s days are numbered. With some reports suggesting a haemorrhaging of users, apathy among young users and one even comparing it to an infectious disease.

Astonishingly, researchers at Princeton have even predicted that Facebook will lose 80% of its users within the next three years.

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Bad Password

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Category: IT News, Latest.

A list of the 25 most guessed passwords in 2013 has been released – with “123456” being hacked more than any other.

An unoriginal option, maybe, but it’s proven to be the most common and means last year’s most commonly used password – “password” (ironically) – has been relegated to second place.

Other popular passwords in the running included “abc123,” “111111,” and “letmein”.

The list, which is released annually by SplashData and compiled from files containing millions of stolen passwords, is an attempt to highlight the danger of poor personal security and encourage users to come up with more original, as well as stronger passwords.

So, what can you do in order to keep your computer and valuable information safe at all times?

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Curved Television

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Category: Latest.

At The PC Support Group, while specialising in IT Support, we are constantly on the pulse of the latest technology trends – and a new year means new possibilities. Here’s some things to look out for in 2014.

January. A month of dismal, dank and dark days, never ending sales and even less appealing credit card bills.

But for gadget geeks seeking their annual fix of technological titillation, the month that everyone loves to hate actually provides a ray of optimistic light as the great and good in the world of innovation gather in Las Vegas to display their wares.

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES for those in the know) takes place in the Nevada dessert each year and is a great place to showcase the latest advances and innovations – which may be hitting the shelves in the months to come.

So here are five technological trends that may, or may not have featured, but are certainly worth keeping an eye out for in 2014:

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Category: Data Backup.

Considering the value that the modern day business places upon computer data, you may find it surprising to learn just how many organisations fail to see the importance of backing-up their systems.

Incredibly, it has been found that 53 per cent of businesses do not conduct daily backups – with 32 per cent believing that such a routine is an inefficient use of their time.

At The PC Support Group we know the importance of backing up data on a regular basis and that’s why we’ve produced this infographic; Protect Your Data: Why Backup Matters.

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Broadband Fibre

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Category: Broadband, Business, IT Support.

If your business relies on the internet, then you need to ensure you have a broadband service that is dependable. Many small businesses simply look for the cheapest option and that usually translates to a broadband package designed primarily for residential use. Business broadband packages generally offer a more reliable and more secure service.

Choosing the right package can be daunting but many internet service providers (ISP) now offer exclusive packages that address many of the concerns about running a business online, or being reliant on the internet for information or communication purposes.

Here are some aspects you should consider before selecting a broadband package for your business:

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Category: IT Support, Mobile Computing.

Earlier this year it was reported by the BBC (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-bristol-21629210) that a couple ran up a bill of nearly £2000 because their 5 year old son accidentally made in app purchases on their iPhone.

Most surprisingly was the fact that they had their iTunes account password protected and they thought they were safe. How did this happen and could it happen to you?

What you may have noticed is that once you enter your iTunes account password it remains active for 15 minutes without the need to enter the password again. That means that in this period anyone (including any nearby 5 year olds) can make further purchases without the need for the password.

If you want to avoid this here’s what to do…

On your iPhone or iPad go to the ‘Settings’ app and choose the ‘General’ option. Scroll down and select the ‘Restrictions’ option and then tap on ‘Enable Restrictions’ and enter a 4 digit Passcode.

Scroll iPhone 1down the screen to the option ‘Require Password’ which normally shows a default of 15 Minutes. Select this and change the option to ‘Immediately’ and then go back by selecting the ‘Restrictions’ button at the top left of the screen. The “Require Password” option should now say ‘Immediately’.

Job done!  Now your iPhone or iPad will prompt for the password again the very next time someone tries to download a chargeable app, rather than after a 15 minute free-for-all!

 

 

 

Computer Virus

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Category: IT News, IT Security, IT Support.

The PC Support Group has issued a warning to all computer users about a type of computer virus attack which appears to be affecting an increased number of systems in recent weeks.

This relatively new type of malware is capable of bypassing anti-virus/anti-malware protection by changing its appearance, and until anti-malware software is made aware of the new ‘strain’ it isn’t able to block it.  This process can take hours from when the virus is released and as a consequence there is a window of time where systems are particularly exposed and vulnerable to attack.

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young people coding

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Category: IT News.

The PC Support Group’s Managing Director, Philip Bird, has offered his backing to the BBC’s proposal of getting more young people coding.

30 years on from trying to make computing mainstream by installing machines into the majority of schools across the country, the BBC has announced plans to “bring coding into every home, business and school in the UK”.

Plans for the scheme are, as yet, unclear but it shows a willingness from the organisation to change the way the nation thinks about coding.

In a speech to staff, BBC director general Tony Hall said that the initiative would launch in 2015.

“We want to inspire a new generation to get creative with coding, programming and digital technology,” he said.

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Category: Business, IT Support.

Here at The PC Support Group, we manage IT for hundreds of businesses and one thing that we regularly come across are business owners and managers who are frustrated that they don’t understand IT and so feel incapable of choosing a good IT support provider.

We often hear that they have been “blinded with science” and don’t know what to believe. Most have also had bad experiences with previous IT support providers too.

Of course there are no guarantees of a great service but there are some basic, non-technical, questions that any business should ask an IT support supplier before engaging them in order to improve the chances that they will perform.

This infographic shows 20 great questions every business should ask an IT support company when selecting a new support provider. You can see the full size image by clicking here.

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