For over 30-years, I have been an advocate for Safe, Secure, Effective computing. In the process of witnessing how entrepreneurs cope with the day to day challenges they face and knowing how costly and frustrating computing and technical issues can be for them, I’ve put together this list of the 7 most common mistakes and how to prevent them. With the proper knowledge and preparation, many of these time wasters and money eating events can easily be avoided. Why deal with these issues AFTER they become a drag on your resources? We can make it easy and eliminate the causes and as a bonus, STREAMLINE your daily activities to make your entire computing experience a more favorable one.
The #1 most common challenge that I see is “Lack of Accurate Documentation”. There is no greater time waster than searching for information that you need to complete a computing process. Whether it be usernames/passwords to the computers, servers, websites, e-mail accounts, etc. that you need to do your business, or vendor phone numbers, purchase registrations, warranty expirations, license numbers – you think of the need – an organized system to keep the information easily accessible should be your first priority to help streamline the process.
Number 2 on our list of 7 is “Data backup and preservation”. It is ALL ABOUT YOUR DATA! Hardware, Software, Peripherals – they will all fail and can routinely be replaced.
Your DATA however, this is the meat and potatoes of your business. Being personal and strategic to your business, your data can’t be “purchased” from a 3rd party and provisions for protecting it, preserving it, and controlling it must be made. This means using techniques of Backup and Encryption necessary to keep the data available no matter what the circumstance.
Number 3 – “Data Access”. Controlling who has access to your computers is a key element to protecting them and the data on them. Physical access to computers allows anyone with limited knowledge the ability to do almost anything to them and their contents. It is important that controls be in place to restrict who, when, and what users are permitted to do with your information. When employees are terminated, immediate action steps should be in place to change passwords and access to company property. With Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) now very common in the workplace, Employees often not only have access to e-mail on their Smart Phones, Tablets, and Laptops, they may also have access via remote access to your other data sources. Closing these gaps while first being aware of them is key to a strong “Data Access” policy.
Number 4 – Current “Anti-Malware / Anti-Virus / Firewall protection” is necessary for all endpoints, Servers, and Network Connected Smart Devices. I’ve recommended a “cocktail approach” to layering security using the latest technologies available. So many risks exist today that single vendor solutions often miss intrusions not because they are ineffective, but because different approaches and methods are necessary to identify and neutralize these “attacks”.
Number 5 – “Educating and “Licensing” Users” is a required element in the process. Back in the early 2000’s I created a concept I call “The Personal Computer Driver’s License”. While it has always been a State requirement to gain a familiarity and level of competence with a moving vehicle, I too believe that computer users should also be licensed to “traverse the data super-highway”. Too often, intrusions occur via phishing schemes, e-mail downloads, poor search habits, and other “preventable” actions a bit of knowledge could easily address. Regular training can reinforce the importance of steps that I refer to as “The 2-Minute Pause™” and “The Pushaway™”.
Number 6 – “Routine Maintenance” – Using utilities to help cleanup temp files, surfing histories, old outdated registry entries, etc., running routine scans, and verifying that all necessary backups and programs are updated and running properly are all necessary to keep systems running like new. System inspections, following up on any user reported errors, etc. are measures that keep systems and users content.
Number 7 – “Power Management” – Controlling how systems are powered, cooled, started and shut down are all part of good system management. For Desktop systems and Servers, reliable Battery Backup devices are recommended to control the clean and consistent power necessary to keep systems from “locking up” or shutting down unexpectedly. For those who use Laptops, maintaining proper cooling and air flow is necessary. Users often close the lid of a laptop and “take off” in a rush without waiting for the system to properly “sleep”. For longer term “excursions”, laptops should be placed in hibernation of completely shut off to protect the hard drive.
There is much more information than this article has time to cover on each of these 7 Steps. I am planning a webinar that will elaborate on these as well as provide answers to your related questions. If you’d like more information about the Webinar or to request a personal consult anytime, please complete the Contact form at: http://www.askavie.com/contact/ and mention “7 Steps Webinar” in the Comment section. I’ll be certain to keep you informed.
This is 9th in a series of aSKaVIE articles devoted to your productivity, digital privacy and protection. In future articles, you can look forward to tips and tricks that you can use to make sense out of your digital investments as well as reviews of new and exciting things that will likely provide value to your home and business. I invite you to write me with your questions and feedback. We’ll also be helping and inspiring others by answering your questions and that’s what makes my job so much fun! So stay tuned. Please send your questions to TheRosyReport@askavie.com.
About Avie Uniglicht: For over 30-years, Avie Uniglicht – “Your Tech Concierge™” has provided technology support and solutions to entrepreneurs who don’t have time to worry about the details. Specializing in “White-Glove Remote Room-Service,” Avie’s concept of giving you, his client, virtual “house calls” is cited regularly as invaluable and many of Avie’s clients say they couldn’t live without him on speed dial. Avie graduated Summa Cum Laude from Temple University with a BS in Business Administration. A former auditor for Price Waterhouse and past President of Ace Computer Center Inc., he is also the author of the e-Book, “Your Personal Computer Driver’s License.” Avie’s extensive business background and strong experience in accounting enhances his natural talent for helping his clients see the bigger picture regarding their business. “Your Tech Concierge” helps clients evaluate strategy so that together, they create an action plan with the end in mind. For more information or to “Ask Avie,” please call him at (888)-374-3712, and visit www.askavie.com.