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4 Questions to Ask When Hiring an IT Support Company

Written by Tiffiny Hladczuk. Posted in ITS Blog

it support companyWith search engines being the top driver of online traffic to related websites, it’s crucial for businesses to have a strong IT support company by their side to help support their online presence. IT companies can help can help with almost any computer-related issues, from computer repair to online marketing issues. Finding the best IT support company to fit your needs can be a time-consuming and frustrating task. Fortunately, this article covers a few questions to ask potential IT companies to ensure you pick one that will help your company thrive.

  1. What types of support do you offer and what are your contract options?
    IT support companies usually offer a few choices of service levels to serve different needs and budgets. For instance, there are options that allow you to pay an hourly rate but there are also options that have the IT company actively manage your systems. No matter the level of support you choose, you should be aware of the contract options, including length and any penalties that may arise if you decide to get out of the contract early.
  2. What kind of customer service support do you offer?
    Knowing and understanding things like response times can be a key factor in choosing an IT company. When something goes wrong at your company, you want to know you have IT support you can rely on to fix the issue in a timely manner. In doing this, you’ll reduce the risk of down time and losing profit.
  3. How large is your company?
    As IT companies grow, their ability to offer more solutions and better products grows with them. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean you should go with the largest IT company you can find. Bigger companies sometimes can be faceless and lack the ability to build a strong relationship with your business. You should choose a company that you feel confident will be able to meet all of your needs with the staff they have.
  4. What is and isn’t covered in the contract?
    It’s important to know what your IT services will and will not cover. With that in mind, it’s also important to find out if the company charges extra for devices like printers and scanners. Knowing what is and isn’t covered will help you figure out how much the total cost will be and if you’ll need to pay extra for additional services you require.

Having an IT support company can make a huge difference in company growth. Without having to worry about handling IT issues yourself, you’ll be able to focus solely on managing your company, knowing you have an excellent IT company to help with any issues that arise along the way.

IT Spending Projected to Reach $3.7 Trillion in 2018

Written by Tiffiny Hladczuk. Posted in ITS Blog

digital marketing

Market research firm Gartner reports that global spending on IT services is expected to hit an incredible $3.7 trillion in 2018. This is a 4.3% increase from 2017. While $3.7 trillion is a massive number, it’s actually relatively modest growth for such an all-encompassing industry.

There are 10 markets which will make up most of the IT spending forecast, according to Gartner. Three of these markets consist of Cloud segments — Infrastructure-as-a-Service, Communications-Platform-as-a-Service, and Integrated-Platform-as-a-Service.

John-David Lovelock, Research Vice President at Gartner, said in a statement, “Global IT spending is showing little overall growth, as are traditional markets. These top 10 markets will be the key to remaining relevant and achieving growth in the future.”

Why Your Company Needs IT Services
Investing in managed IT services allows companies to maximize current technology and stay ahead of competitors. Maintaining an in-house IT department can sometimes just be too expensive for small businesses, which is why managed IT services are increasingly the norm in the era of cloud computing.

Considering that, here are a few reasons to use a professional IT provider.

  1. Using an IT service allows employers and employees to focus more on business functions. Spending time on computer maintenance when you have better things to be doing can end up hurting the business. Having experts on call who can come fix your computer problems for you allows you to stop wasting company time on computer repairs.
  2. IT services can help improve your company’s digital marketing. Increasingly, the role of traditional IT companies are expanding towards a more integrated approach. In addition to general computer support and software installation, many IT services allow your business to execute and implement digital marketing campaigns. From web design to search engine optimization, many IT services now include online marketing services as well. With technology constantly evolving, it’s important to have IT support that will help your company keep up.
  3. An external IT service will give your company an extra sense of security. Between 75% and 80% of all vengeful cyber attacks are made internally, not from an external threat. Security auditing and penetration testing are necessary to thoroughly evaluate your IT infrastructure. Considering this, using an external IT provider will greatly reduce your risk of being hacked from within and will give your company peace of mind when it comes to protecting your software, customer information, and data.

Using an outside IT service will not only assist you with tasks like digital marketing and security management, but it will also enhance the overall productivity of your business. Without having to worry about computer maintenance and repairs, you and your employees are free to focus solely on your day-to-day tasks and on making your business as successful as possible.

The Simplest Thing You Can Do To Protect Your Computer Every Day

Written by Tiffiny Hladczuk. Posted in ITS Blog

fix your computerChances are you rely on your computer for a lot of different things. In our digital world, everyone is accustomed to gaining information at the click of a button, and our computers are the perfect vessel for that. Not to mention the fact that they store our massive photo collections, music libraries, and important documents!

Unfortunately, our computers are highly sensitive units and require a lot of care to run properly. Having to fix your computer when you need it the most can be incredibly frustrating, but luckily any computer tragedy can be prevented with simple computer maintenance. And the best thing is, there’s only one thing you have to do every day in order to protect your computer — simply shut it off!

Here’s why it pays to shut off your computer at the end of every day.

  1. Many updates require your computer to restart
    No matter what operating system you use, any computer support update requires the machine to be completely shut off in order for it to work. Plus, you may even have updates that will auto-install every night without you knowing, so it’s best to power off just to be safe.
  2. RAM memory needs to be refreshed on a regular basis
    The memory in your computer, RAM, will degrade over time if it is not continuously refreshed. This means that you’ll potentially lose important data if it doesn’t have an opportunity to refresh itself.
  3. Malware and virus scans start everytime you reboot your computer
    The amount of information you have on your machine is incredibly vast. So, it is crucial to run malware and virus scans to ensure your data is safe and clean. This is especially important if you look up a lot of information on the Internet — considering that 93% of all Internet experiences start with the use of a search engine, you never know what you’ll pick up. So as a rule of thumb, you should have virus and malware scans running at all times on your computer to be as protected as possible.

Maintaining your computer couldn’t be easier than just turning it off every night. Think of it this way: your computer needs to sleep, too!

If you need to fix your computer or have any computer repair questions, don’t hesitate to stop by to talk to our professionals today.

3 Reasons You Should Never Put Off Those Computer Updates

Written by Tiffiny Hladczuk. Posted in ITS Blog

computer helpYou’re probably familiar with this situation: you’re in the middle of working on a document or an email when you’re interrupted by the computer update pop-up window. If you’re like most people, you won’t even think twice about clicking the “remind me later” button. But even though these incessant reminders might be annoying, they serve an important purpose (several, actually!). And by putting off these updates, you may be putting your device — along with your personal information and that of your company — at risk. Let’s take a closer look at why you might want to consider clicking the “update now” button next time.

Updates can fix common issues

Programs and applications are always changing. That’s a good thing, since these improvements are meant to make your life a lot easier. If you’re reluctant to perform an update because you’re worried about these changes, think about some computer issues you might be currently experiencing. Slow operating systems will usually speed up with an update, for example. And strange program flaws will be fixed with patches or system updates, too. By neglecting to update, you’re probably going to make these issues worse. But by saying “yes” to that update, you’ll be giving your computer help that it desperately needs.

Updates provide brand new features

Again, some users are reluctant to make changes, lest they have to ask for computer help to relearn how to navigate a program. But you may want to shift your perspective on this. Your IT support company will likely point out that these newest software versions will offer features that have never been seen before. In many cases, these features will eventually become the standard and may even make your job a whole lot easier. Keep in mind that the older versions will eventually stop being supported by the vendor; in those cases, you’ll have to update anyway. In general, it’s better to get used to a new system right away (and benefit from those added offerings) rather than wait until you’re forced to do so.

Updates will protect your computer

One of the most important reasons to update in a timely manner is that it can protect your computer from malicious attacks. The reality is that 57% of small businesses reported staff-related cyber breaches in recent years. While some of those breaches can undoubtedly be attributed to other factors, failure to update comes with huge security risks. When an outdated program or operating system contains some type of vulnerability, you can bet that cyber criminals are going to find it and try to capitalize on it. Unless you want to deal with the need for emergency tech support (and the fear that your personal or company data has been compromised), you should let your computer update when it prompts you to. Your IT services firm may recommend that you set up your computer to update automatically so that you don’t have to even make a choice.

We know it can be a pain to deal with frequent system updates. However, you should remember that these updates are meant to help you use the device more efficiently and protect it from harm. Make sure to schedule any updates right away and see whether they improve your experience. If you don’t see improvements, you may need additional computer help from an expert.

How You Can Keep Your Business Safe From Hackers, Malware, And Viruses

Written by Tiffiny Hladczuk. Posted in ITS Blog

it security

As a business, protecting your information from hackers is a top priority. Any breaches in IT security can mean the loss of vital client information and company data. If a client doesn’t feel their information is safe with your company, they’ll take their business elsewhere.

Therefore, it’s essential to maintain the IT security of your computer system as a means of keeping your important information safe and to keep your clients protected. But how can you ensure that your company’s information is truly safe from hackers?

  1. Make sure you’re using strong passwords

    Up to 80% of all breaches in IT security are due to admin passwords that aren’t strong enough. If your password is easy enough for you to remember off the bat, odds are it’s also easy for hackers to get past.

    Use admin passwords that have a variation of capital and lowercase letters as well as special characters and numbers. This makes it more difficult for hackers to guess your password. Additionally, ensure that you’re changing your password periodically every month or so. A strong password can only remain so strong until hackers are able to figure it out.

  2. Use the latest software

    Your computer’s IT security is only as strong as its software. Failing to update your software as soon as a newer version becomes available leaves your information vulnerable to hackers and malware. Update your software as soon as possible and run routine scans on your computer system to ensure you catch any tech bugs before they can become a problem.

  3. Contact IT services

    If your computer system’s experienced a breach in security and you’re worried about your data, contact a professional IT consultant as soon as possible. By having a professional look at the problem, you may be able to keep the amount of information stolen to a minimum and may be able to keep viruses off your computer in the future.

Ensuring your online information is safe from hackers, malware, and viruses can help keep your business and clients safe from identity theft and information loss. For more information regarding how you can keep your business safe from hackers, contact the IT consulting services of IT Scares today.