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How to Make Sound Selections for Your Company’s Hardware and Software [And the Three Places Where You Won’t Want to Compromise]

Written on January 17, 2020

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We’ve all heard the old saying: If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. In the world of information technology, that may be the case more often than you think.

The inexpensive and the inadequate sometimes go hand in hand, which can leave you (as the implementor of the device or software) exposed in ways that could cost you far more in the long run.

While it may be tempting at times, you simply shouldn’t cut corners with your technical environment. You’ll eventually have to face the consequences, and the consequences to your business can be major. In today’s world, security is a necessity—not something that’s just nice to have.

Here are three places where you never want to cut corners with your company’s technology.

1. Equipment

You want to set up a wireless network at the office, but you don’t want to spend more than $50. But while your new, inexpensive router may deliver a wireless signal that reaches every employee, you could be making a huge mistake that may cost you dearly. Cheap routers aren’t notorious for providing the enhanced security features that businesses need.

Instead, consider looking for a router that will complement the firewalls and other security software you have in place. (By the way, you should have firewalls and other security software in place for your business.) You want to obtain equipment for your company that not only makes sense for your business’s network needs, but will also perform securely and with stability.

Routers are a good example of technology you should put extra thought and money into, but they aren’t the only example. This same idea applies to all other equipment and software your business uses. When you cut corners, there’s a good chance you’ll be opening your wallet again in the near future to fix unexpected and unwanted problems.

The bottom line is that buying inexpensive equipment (which could be potentially faulty equipment) could put your data at risk. Do your research, ask questions, and work with an experienced IT advisor to make sure your equipment is up to the job.

2. Scalability

Whether your company is just getting started or you’ve been in business for a while now, it’s important to invest in hardware and software that will scale with your business. It’s safe to say that most businesses want to grow, which means adding more customers and more employees, and that’s when scalability becomes a big deal.

Select your business’s hardware and software by identifying those that are designed with scalability in mind. Opt for the ones that can last for the long haul instead of the ones that will be a quick fix.

Where do you plan on being in three to five years? What are your growth goals? The answers to these questions can help to determine what kind of investment you need to make—whether it’s in billing software, customer service software, workstations or your network infrastructure.

If you don’t think about scalability, you may be hit by growing pains just when your business begins to advance toward your goals. You’ll have to reinvest in technology, and you’ll be spending far more than you needed to: once for the first investment (on non-scalable tech) and once for the second investment (to catch up with your growth). Don’t make this mistake!

3. Data Security

Just because your data is locked away in the back room doesn’t mean that it’s safe.

Small businesses in particular are the biggest targets for cybercriminals because most small businesses skimp on data security, which makes it easy for cybercriminals to steal data (and cause a tremendous amount of problems for you).

To make matters worse, if you experience a cyber-attack or data breach, it can be incredibly difficult to recover from it, and, unfortunately, many small businesses don’t ever recover. They often struggle for a few months after an attack before finally closing their doors.

It’s incredibly important for businesses to invest in:

  • next generation firewalls;
  • malware protection;
  • data encryption;
  • data backups;
  • password managers;
  • patch management; and
  • logging.

Find solid equipment and solutions that are designed with today’s security requirements and reliability in mind.

Moving Forward with Establishing Good Technology Practices for Your Business

Remember, you don’t have to figure it out by yourself. It can be a lot, and as you dive into the topic of data security, you’ll have questions about what’s right for your specific business, and you should work with an experienced IT advisor who focuses on security first.

Partnering with an experienced IT advisor who specializes in security is one of the best things you can do for your business. IT advisors can evaluate your security risk to provide you with a clear picture of what needs to be hardened in your technical environment.

Warren Averett Technology Group hosts specialists in business software, technical infrastructure and security solutions. Warren Averett Technology Group looks at each client as an individual organization with unique needs and budgets. There is no one size fits all, but our approach is with technical security front and center.

Connect with a Warren Averett Technology Group advisor who can help you determine your current level of risk, and an action plan for enhancing the security around your infrastructure and software.

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