Q and A

Questions and Answers about technology and IT solutions from the PremierePC team

Honestly? Not enough. The rumor is that “My business is too small for anyone to try to compromise us.”

Consider this:

“Small businesses are especially vulnerable to threats since they often don’t have the resources for extensive security products or teams like larger enterprises. It’s arguably more important for small businesses to protect themselves, since, unfortunately, when these organizations get hit with malware, it can cripple or end their business entirely.

In fact, 43% of data breaches are from small businesses, according to the 2019 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report. This means SMBs have to be scrappy and do more with less.”

https://www.business.com/articles/malware-small-business-prevention/

More than one-third of small businesses (37%) currently outsource a business process. Outsourcing can not only cut costs and increase available skills but also can present challenges related to information confidentiality, communication, and differing expectations.

Businesses most commonly outsource more technical tasks, including their accounting (37%), IT services (37%), and digital marketing (34%) responsibilities.

https://clutch.co/bpo/virtual-assistants/resources/small-business-outsourcing-statistics

That leaves a large portion of the SMB community to fend for themselves. Most smaller firms are doing their best to maximize each dollar towards growth, but often when we assume a new client, we find many services were purchased that are not performing as expected, were over-sold, or worse, are actually harming productivity.

Having a trusted resource like PremierePC to call when you have questions about your business technology or want to learn what is available in the marketplace can be invaluable. Our service plans were purpose built for the SMB community. As an SMB ourselves, we understand the day to day challenges and work to find solutions that bring real value from day one.

What Is the Best Cloud Email Solution?

PremierePC has been selling and supporting both the Microsoft Office 365 and Google G Suite platform for years.

Both have their place based on the business need and feature set demanded. Over the last few years, Microsoft has done a very good job of building a platform that offers a much more comprehensive feature-set without the privacy invasions of Google which as led us to steer more clients in that direction.

Recently, Microsoft has also brought more value to the non-profit space allowing us to help those firms with the latest software and communication tools at a fraction of the cost.

With the introduction of teams, Microsoft has really become focused not only on Applications, Email, but all forms of communication and productivity.

We find the flexibility of the platform as well as include features in the base plan to fit in-line with out cybersecurity stance.

True, the 365 platform is large and complicated, but working with a partner like us, you get the benefit of a powerful platform as well as a local dedicated resource to call to help implement and support it.

We help with migrations, day to day support, and advanced implementations and integrations with other solutions.

What is the most common, easily fixable lapse in cybersecurity that you see in your clients’ businesses?

Hands down, Two Factor Authentication (2FA) or Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA for short) is one of the single best ways to help keep you and your associated accounts safe, yet it is often the one of the most hated methods.

What is MFA? 
Simply stated, MFA uses a second (or third) device to allow you to authenticate your account. This is most common with Email and Banking applications. When you go sign-in, your MFA device is sent an activation code. This process attempts to ensure that you are the one who is requesting a login.  The logic goes that it is more difficult for a hacker to compromise both your password and your MFA devices.

MFA is one of the most effective tactics used to combat phishing scams.  Let’s say that a user at your firm is targeted and they disclose their password during a scam. While that is a problem, the bad guys would still need the MFA device in order to actually login. During this time, the user can report the disclosure to IT and we can make changes before anything happens.

Why don’t more people use it?
The simple reason is its perceived as a hassle. Having to have your phone nearby to login to email may add an additional few moments to the sign-in process, but in the end it can make your life much more secure.

Complexity weighs in too.  Not knowing how to properly setup MFA and integrate with your applications is a huge obstacle.

Another reason seems to be about awareness.

What are the costs?
Depends on your environment.  Microsoft and Google both offer free MFA as part of their core email offering. Several 3rd party solutions like Duo exist as well.

Can you help?
If you are a managed IT client then yes we can! We are actively advising all our managed clients of the importance of MFA and reviewing the methods we can use.

Our goal is to integrate your on-premise environment and your cloud infrastructure.