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Protect Your Clients’ Data―and Your MSP―with Layered Security

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As an MSP, you have been long aware that your clients need to increase and standardize their IT security defenses to decrease the risk of cyberattacks and possible regulatory fines.  However, did you know that new regulations could extend this risk to your own business?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (Regulation (EU) 2016/679), which starts to roll out in 2017 and goes into full effect in May 2018, Continue Reading…

Security is an MSP’s Job One

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Security is by far the toughest challenge faced by end user organizations today — which is why so many small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) choose to outsource their security to managed service providers (MSPs). SMBs simply can’t afford the security personnel expense (security experts command top salaries) and don’t have the time to do the constant and detailed work it takes to maintain a safe environment. Nor is this a strategic endeavor for busy SMB IT shops.
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5 IT Cloud Myths and Beliefs – Debunked, Confirmed and In-Between

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The cloud is still full of mystery. After all, you can’t see and touch your applications and data, and you have less control than with their on-premises counter parts. Now that the cloud is maturing, some issues are becoming clearer.

Here is a reality check on 5 cloud myths and beliefs. Continue Reading…

How an IT Inventory Exposes Unprotected Systems, Shows What is Out of Date, Supports Proper Hardware and Software Planning, and Helps you Survive a Software Audit

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We old timers remember the emergence of the PC as an IT force. In mainframe dominated organizations, PCs were snuck in, put surreptitiously to work, and then proved themselves more than worthy.

Today, IT itself deploys myriad devices ― so much so they have a hard time keeping track of their own handiwork. And end users and departments are still bringing in their own machines and applications. This has long gone on but in recent years has come to be called Stealth or Shadow IT.

Meanwhile, the average end user has multiple devices: PC, tablet, smartphone, etc. And they are increasingly adept at finding and using new applications.

All this adds up to a major management headache and security threat. IT must get their arms around this problem if they are to provide a safe and effective computing environment.
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The Beauty of Managed, Automated Security for IT

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Security has gotten too complex for an SMB IT staff to fully manage without help. The threats posed by cybercriminals are worse than ever, and the damage that they do is unparalleled. Keeping up is tough enough. Staying ahead seems near impossible.

Security is Job One

As a member of the IT department, your most important function is to protect the network and safeguard your organization’s critical data. While down servers and unstable applications can make your department look bad, the most visible failure is a security breach. That’s ‘heads rolling’ territory.

Security is also a visibility issue for companies who see their reputation and business possibly ruined due to breach publicity.

These fears are what makes security the number one priority for business leaders and the top way they judge IT.

Meanwhile most SMB IT staffs don’t have the time, budget, manpower or the tools to handle security in an optimum way.

So what’s a responsible IT department to do? Continue Reading…

Turn Managing Office 365 from Bear to Breeze

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Microsoft Office 365 sounds like a piece of cake to install and use. And for a single end user, it can be. But just try and move an entire shop, even a small one, over to the Microsoft productivity cloud suite. The management difficulties can be shocking.

Part of the problem is the administrator skills needed for on-premises Microsoft Office are almost exactly the same as those required for Office 365 – which translates into  a deep mastery of PowerShell scripting and Active Directory. This comes as quite a surprise to many Office 365 customers.

The result? Some customers looking to move to the cloud opt for Google Apps, and live with far fewer features, rather than tangle with the management beast that is Office 365.
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Inside a Next-generation RMM

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Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) solutions are the foundation upon which successful MSP businesses are built.

But all too often MSPs struggle with their RMMs, and devote a full-time admin just to run the darn thing. Complexity is just one thing holding back optimum exploitation of RMM solutions. Other drawbacks of some RMM tools are an inability to scale, less than robust automation, and weak reporting.

The quality of your RMM is critical as it is the main way MSPs produce revenue. That’s why the idea of a next-generation RMM is so important. So what is a next gen RMM? It is one that eliminates the downsides of today’s generation of solutions. Not only that, a next-generation RMM vendor should never stop innovating — always looking for new features that make MSPs’ clients lives easier and their IT more productive.

Did you know that last year, some 59% of managed offerings from MSPs were driven by an RMM, and that revenue grew Continue Reading…

IT Operations Survey Shows Improvement for SMBs

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IT is a tough job no matter where you work. It is especially tough in SMBs which don’t have the staggering budgets and massive and highly specialized staffs of their larger enterprise brethren.

SMB IT pros end up wearing so many hats they can barely walk through the door.

Fortunately, these IT professionals are getting better all the time at their jobs; have better and better tools to manage resources; and often have Continue Reading…

How MSPs Can Make Office 365 Management Easy

office-365There are so many reasons to love Microsoft Office 365. Employees can work remotely and, regardless of device or location, can access all their applications and files. Businesses especially appreciate the scalability and lower infrastructure costs that Office 365 brings to the table.

The problem is that managing more than a few users is time consuming – which is costly and the furthest thing from strategic IT work. Meanwhile, PowerShell scripting is often necessary for true granular control, which means  an additional  cost of learning or hiring someone who does this kind of scripting – something IT can ill afford.

This substandard and complex management approach puts IT at risk because auditing and reporting is either less robust, or entirely non-existent.

A great answer is for IT to put Office 365 into the hands of a Managed Service Provider (MSP). But MSPs find it difficult to manage customers that have moved to Office 365 because
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Latest Research on What MSPs’ Customers Want

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Kaseya recently published its second annual IT Operations Benchmark Survey, which included results from 1,200 small- and mid-sized companies (SMBs) representing over 50 industries and 20 countries.

I thought I would share several insights from the survey that are extremely valuable to the MSPs who are targeting these companies.
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