I was meeting with an old colleague the other day. We met over Microsoft Teams to just check in and see how they were doing—no real itinerary, just to check in with a familiar face that I haven’t personally talked to in a few years. They had a little trouble getting into Microsoft Teams, since they were used to Zoom. I patiently smiled and helped them through it, and told them “No worries, it’s always the little differences that complicate things!”
At the time, I said this just to be empathetic. At first, the nerdy computer-geek part of my brain told me that the process to get into a Zoom meeting vs a Teams meeting, from their perspective, is exactly the same. But after the call, I really thought about this small interaction, and you know what? Things have gotten complicated.
It’s easy to take advantage of literally anything in our modern world. Take your car, for example. Some of our readers might have a pretty decent idea of how to diagnose some issues with their car, but more likely than not, you probably aren’t going to take apart your engine to replace a camshaft. An even higher number of you will probably just rely on the professionals for just about everything when it comes to your car. And sure, cars have gotten a little more complicated over the years, but the same basic principles haven’t changed much. Still, there’s going to be this layer that you (and the general public) understands, and then a much deeper layer underneath that only a select few understand.
Your computers and your network are the same way. You see and work with one side of it. As a business owner, you might have a little more knowledge when it comes to some of the inner workings—after all, you did have to pay for it. Still, what matters to you is that the outer layer works for you and your staff, and all of the complicated, technical pieces on the inside perform as they are supposed to.
Look at your average desktop, or even your smartphone. Not much has changed in that landscape over the last several years that makes the average user say “Wow, this is so much better than before!” Each subsequent device gets a little better, a little faster, and a little sleeker. Your new phone has a slightly better camera than before, or the stylus it comes with is a little nicer, or the screen is a little bigger. Your new laptop isn’t quite as loud and the battery sure lasts longer, but all in all, any changes just seem arbitrary, right?
I know it seems like I’m saying a lot here, but to get to the point—even as a techy, who eats, breathes, and sleeps IT, I understand where you are coming from.
I’m not talking about computer hardware. I’m not talking about the stuff that you see and touch and use every day. I’m talking about the underlying way that a modern business needs to be set up in order to succeed when it comes to its IT.
Ninety percent of this complication is due to cybersecurity. Nothing has rocked our industry (and the business world in general) more than cybersecurity in a long time. Oddly enough, up until very recently, cybersecurity has all but been ignored by most businesses. It’s seen as a luxury—a nice-to-have expense.
These days, a cybersecurity incident can end up costing a business their reputation, hundreds of thousands of dollars, and can lead to subsequent attacks over and over until the business is forced to throw in the towel.
10 years ago, the standard practices for defending a business were implementing centralized antivirus, running scans regularly, and having the network logs monitored daily. You could establish decent network policies to make sure people only had access to what they were supposed to see, enforce some strong passwords, and maybe implement a firewall and content filter for added security and productivity.
That’s pretty simple. Today, that’s far less than the bare minimum.
You see, computers haven’t changed much on that top layer that we all interact with, but the inside layer that only a select few understand is wildly different. Unfortunately, a portion of the “select few” who understand technology are using it for illegal and otherwise nefarious purposes. They are taking advantage of businesses and organizations that aren’t properly secured.
SouthBridge Consulting LLC can serve as your organization’s technical liaison. Our current clients tend to look at us sort of like an internal IT department that just works in a separate office. We’ve truly worked hard to convey this sort of culture over the years. We’re not a service provider who just does XYZ, gets paid, and leaves. We align ourselves with your organization’s goals, and work with you to personalize your IT to make sure it suits your business. On top of that, we handle the complicated inner workings so you can focus on your business.
If you haven’t tried us out yet, we encourage you to give us a call at (281) 816-6430 for a consultation. We’d love to meet, talk shop, and chat about how we can help give you and your business confidence in its technology.
When you subscribe to the blog, we will send you an e-mail when there are new updates on the site so you wouldn't miss them.