Helping clients manage their technology for over 30 years.

Building Better Wireless By Mapping Your Goals

Compass "direction" concept

Wireless chatter really is everywhere: I recently saw an ad from a major pain relief company touting the benefits of its latest product, a “wireless” pain patch

But wireless implementations can be plenty painful, and there’s no magic patch to ease the strain.

When clients ask us the best way to ensure that a wireless service performs as desired, we advise them to begin by asking — in non-technical terms — what they’re trying to accomplish. Continue reading

4 Capabilities to Look For in an IT Staffing Company

Two hands joining together two oversized jigsaw pieces

When it comes to choosing a firm to help with your IT staffing efforts, it’s important to remember that some IT staffing firms do a better job than others. Here’s what you have a right to expect:

1. An IT staffing company should be able to help you strategically plan your IT hiring
This involves a thorough examination of budget priorities, workloads, the skillsets of current team members, and future projects — all with an eye on flexibly meeting both your short- and long-term goals. Look for an IT staffing company that helps you determine what types of special skills you need for your IT projects, the best mix of permanent IT staff and contractors, when you’ll see workload spikes, etc.

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Getting the IT Staff You Need May Not be as Easy as You Think

Man contemplating a decision

According to Computer Economics’ 2014/2015 IT Spending & Staffing Benchmarks report, hiring of IT professionals is finally on the upswing — yet another indication that our long-declining economy continues to improve.

Even so, you may not have an easy time finding the right IT expertise when you need it. That’s because there’s something of a squeeze going on (you know, the one that puts you between a rock and a hard place):

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Are you buying a service — or an illusion?

Handshake in gray

Imagine discovering that for the last 12 months none of your company data had been backed up at your designated co-lo.

Worse, you only found this out because your corporate site has suffered a catastrophic failure. All your data has been lost — and you have no way to retrieve it.

You’re outraged, of course, and you want answers. How could your co-lo provider fail to back up your data? What about your provider’s vaunted disaster recovery service? Who is responsible for allowing this to happen?  Continue reading

When It Comes to Security, Know Thyself

Data Security & Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

“If you don’t understand the risks, you don’t understand the costs,” security guru Bruce Schneier advised during a TED talk.

He was discussing security in the abstract — but it got me thinking about IT security in particular and the difficulty many executives face trying to determine if their organizations are safe from cyberattack.

The problem is that these conversations nearly always turn technical. Soon, a flurry of technology acronyms — confounding but apparently reassuring — begin flying around the room.

And, reports Schneier, it works. People, he says, will “respond to the feeling of security and not the reality.”

So what can a CEO do to understand the reality of security risk and grasp what the actual cost of security failure might do to the organization?  Continue reading

CEOs in the Crosshairs

Writing hand in crosshairs

When it comes to security breaches, CEOs stand in the crosshairs. More than their IT staffs, it’s a CEO who’ll take heat for a breach that exposes customer data or endangers relationships with business partners.

So, unlike plenty of other IT issues that don’t require C-level attention, information security ranks right up there alongside financial issues as something with which CEOs need to be familiar. Yes, information security can be daunting, but so are financial statements — and CEOs have to sign off on those.

Where to start? Here are three questions every CEO should be able to answer: Do you know who your security expert is? Do you have a security policy? Do you understand how it’s implemented, managed, enforced, monitored?

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What’s Happening to the IT Department?

Where once IT departments were the sole source when it came to technology implementation, today technology is finding its way into corporate America through nearly every department.

Marketing folks may have been among the first to leave the IT department fold when they ditched cumbersome CRM systems for easy-to-use, but they were just the tip of what has grown into a pretty big iceberg.

Virtually every day sees a new app available to help workers be more productive — and those workers aren’t hesitating to download those apps and get on with business.

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What makes Cloud Computing different?

The siloed nature of traditional data center architectures has produced “you-can’t-get-there-from-here” IT environments. Too often applications, data, and storage devices don’t interact, resources are wasted (e.g., one workload per server), and complex management hassles often lead to risky administrative lapses that result in security vulnerabilities.

The result: IT infrastructures that are too unwieldy, too expensive, and too slow at a time when agility and responsiveness are essential for success.

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Security holes that’ll keep you up at night: Doing some data breach math

Data Breach Threats Faced By Business IT Infrastructure

Over the last few weeks, I’ve taken a look at what you can do to boost your organization’s IT security. But it occurs to me that maybe I’ve put the cart before the horse.

So I’m going to spend the next few weeks delving into the sort of threats your business’s IT infrastructure faces. And I’m going to start with data breaches and the most recent big-headline example: Zappos (parent company is, which last month admitted it suffered a data breach that compromised 24 million customer accounts.

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Quest’s 10 ways to boost business IT security in 2012: #9 and #10

Ways to boost Business IT Security

For quite some time, small and midsized businesses dared to feel safe from most malicious attacks — thanks to their relative smallness. Over the last couple of years, that’s been changing, because larger firms are tightening defenses and, as I’ve said before, the bad guys exploit opportunity.

Which is why shoddy IT security is a wide open opportunity for hackers to rip you off.

So I’m finishing our list with two elements easily overlooked as you face the hassles of keeping up with criminal creativity.

#9 Educate your employees about security

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