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IT Resourcing and Cyber Security

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NLDC Newsletter

 

Welcome to our September 2016 Newsletter

We aim to provide you with a brief digest of IT information that you will find useful and informative.

Please let us know if this newsletter has been helpful to you. Any feedback will be gratefully received. If there is anything you would like us to address in future issues, please do not hesitate to get in touch. Please email Newsletter@nldc.co.uk or use the Contact Form on our website www.nldc.co.uk.

About NLDC?

NLDC was formed by Neil Davies in 2002 to provide independent IT advice to businesses in the North West. We provide the services of an in-house IT Director, but only when you need it.
 
We pride ourselves on our integrity, competence, value for money and flexibility. To learn more about the kind of things we do, why not take a look at our website www.nldc.co.uk or give us a call on 0161 654 4155, we'll be more than happy to discuss any IT or Telecommunications related queries you may have.

Do you need and IT Director?

If you haven’t already got an IT Director, then the simple answer is “Yes”. But then we would say that wouldn’t we? The issue here is that the vast majority of IT features are now available to businesses of any size. The key is being able to marry up the correct technology with the correct business. As a business leader you will know your business inside out. However, identifying the most appropriate systems and suppliers for your business really needs independent, external assistance.

An IT Director can add significant value to a business by bringing a wider knowledge to bear on your specific problems. Having long serving members of staff is great, but it does mean that your business may suffer from a lack of new ideas. This is especially true in a fast moving environment such as IT. All businesses have to use technology to improve how they operate. Some do this quite well, others are not as successful.

One way to ensure you make the best decision is to add external skills and expertise at strategic points in the development of the business. External high level skills also add another dimension in that they can add significant extra resources. When a system is being changed, there is inevitably a point where internal resources are spread far too thinly because they have to maintain the old system and deploy/develop the new system. The additional resources that an external provider can supply can help you to manage that additional workload to ensure the new system is implemented successfully and with as little disruption as possible.

How can NLDC help?
The biggest challenge any business faces is to decide whether a senior appointment is affordable. With NLDC, IT Director services are provided on an ad-hoc basis. You only pay for what you need.

An IT Director from NLDC will provide strategic guidance and tactical support to help you develop your business whilst all the time making it more efficient. All at a price you can afford.

We have yet to encounter a business that we can’t help, and many appointments have been cost neutral when compared with the direct savings and efficiency benefits that have been realised.

Whether you need a step change in the efficiency of your business, or just want assistance comparing IT solutions, we can help. By being independent you are assured that our recommendations are based solely on your requirements. Please contact us if you are interested and would like more information.

Beware Ransomware

Computer viruses have been around for as long as the PC. However, these days their effects can be quite staggering. In the old days, you would install some software from a disk on the cover of a magazine and your PC would crash. These days, you click on an attachment in an email and all the data on your network is encrypted with a message demanding payment.

Locky, a “popular” strain of ransomware, dominated the email malware lists for the first half of this year, so you can expect it to be received by your email server at some point. If you are the victim of a ransomware attack, your only realistic way out is by resorting to backups. Paying a ransom is never a good idea, just make sure your backups are current and valid and cover every system.

Don’t forget that these types of viruses could well encrypt every piece of data that is connected to your network, so if you backup to disk, your backup copies will also be encrypted. The backups need to be saved to devices that are not readily connected to your network. Using a formal off site backup facility would usually provide this kind of protection as it would only establish a connection when the backup is being transferred off site, not all the time.

It is fair to say that, whilst it is imperative that operating systems are patched and the virus/email protection systems are kept up to date, your main defence is in staff training. For ransomware to run, someone needs to click on a link or attachment in an email. Staff must be constantly reminded never to open attachments in unsolicited emails, unless they are certain the message is genuine. Key things to look for are:-

• Are you expecting the email? – if not then be suspicious
• Is the sender’s domain name incorrectly spelt? – a sure sign that it is fake
• Does the email use language that you wouldn’t associate with the sender or is it very generic?
• Does the email have poor grammar and spelling?

Gartner predicts that 99% of all vulnerabilities exploited will have been known about for over a year. This means that your best protection is simple: educate your staff, keep security systems up to date and make sure your backups are fit for purpose.

And finally...

Do you ever wonder where your surname came from – geographically speaking? Well, as ever these days, there’s an app for it. Named maps where in the UK a surname is unusually common (or should that be popular!).

Contact Us

T: 0161 654 4155                         E: info@nldc.co.uk                         W: www.nldc.co.uk

Our previous Newsletters are available HERE
Why not call us to see how our skills and expertise can help your business.

Copyright © 2016 NLD Consultancy Limited, All rights reserved.


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