Advantages of Partnering with Managed Services Providers

Advantages-of-Partnering-with-an-MSP banner

Advantages of Partnering with Managed Services Providers

In today’s digital world, it is almost impossible for big enterprises to small and medium-sized businesses to function without technology. With so many different products and service offerings available, most companies have difficulty keeping up with the demand. As a result, many business owners are partnering with managed services providers to take some of the load off their shoulders.

These professionals will handle all technology-related administrative tasks and help you avoid costly IT repairs or system failures.

The Protected Harbor Managed Service Provider (MSP) Partner Advantage program is now available. It is designed to assist your company’s growth by accelerating the time to market, expanding your clientele, and increasing profitability.

This blog post will share some advice on partnering with MSPs for your company and what to watch out for when signing contracts or service-level agreements.

 

What is a Managed Service Provider?

A managed service provider (MSP) is a company that offers a wide range of IT services. There are many different types of managed services. Still, they all have a few things in common: – Service Level Agreement (SLA): This contract outlines the services provided, response times, and any penalties if the company fails to meet those goals.

Customized Plans: Some MSPs will have standardized plans, but most will work with you to create a customized plan that fits your needs and budget.

24/7 Support: All MSPs will provide 24/7 support for their clients. This means you can call them whenever you have a problem, even at 2 AM.

Backup and Disaster Recovery: It’s crucial to have a backup system in place, so you don’t lose any data if your system fails. A managed service provider will have a backup plan with regular tests.

Cybersecurity: With the rise in cyber-attacks, getting day-to-day management services or standard information technology services is not enough. Therefore, you must partner with MSP, which provides all services including cybersecurity.

 

How Can MSPs Help Your Company?

The goal of an MSP is to help you reduce IT costs, improve productivity and reliability, and increase uptime. To achieve those goals, the managed service provider will need to look at your current technology infrastructure and offer suggestions for improving it.

Most MSPs will offer a wide variety of services including networking, infrastructure managementdata security, cloud computing, voice and communications, disaster recovery and business continuity, endpoint management, remote monitoring and management, data management, and application management.

 

Advantages of Partnering with Managed Services Providers middle

Important Questions to Ask Before Signing Any Contract

Before signing any contract, you must ensure that the MSP is a good fit for your company. Here are a few questions when vetting managed services providers: – Is the MSP a good fit for my company? – What is the MSP’s track record? – How does the MSP protect my data? – What are the MSP’s rates and terms? – How will the MSP and my team work together? – Are there any hidden costs associated with the MSP? – How does the MSP handle customer service? – What are the MSP’s cancellation procedures?

 

Reasons to Partner With Us

Extending Your Services Portfolio

 

Multi-tenant, cloud-based solutions that are simple to scale and deploy can be used to improve current services and develop new ones.

A Track Record With Merit

 

Protected Harbor is recognized by industry analysts like Goodfirms and other top companies for its data resilience and performance.

The Best Collaborations

 

The tech platforms used by clients and service providers, such as Microsoft, Amazon, Oracle, SAP, and Google, are supported by us.

 

 

 

Simplifying Advanced Data Systems

 

Our selection of Intelligent Data Services allows you to design data protection procedures for your clients that significantly impact outcomes. You can be confident in delivering services powered by Protected Harbor, from guaranteeing data and application availability to preventing cyber risks and ensuring effective business continuity.

Customize Your Customer Data

 

You can determine how to manage client data with choices like innovative deployment and contactless capabilities.

Adaptable Consumption Models For A Range Of Business Requirements

The architecture of Protected Harbor Services makes it simple to use and lowers the total cost of ownership (TCO). Options for utility subscription contracts increase flexibility and savings.

 

As you can see, partnering with a managed services provider can save your company a lot of money and headaches. The best MSPs, like Protected Harbor, will help you manage your technology infrastructure, reduce your costs, and improve the uptime of your systems. At the same time, you will have the flexibility to handle projects outside the managed services scope.

Protected Harbor engineers are highly skilled specialists capable of application migration, development, and continuing maintenance services. If you’d like to partner with us for your managed services and cybersecurity needs, this is the right time. Contact us today for a free IT Audit and learn how our partner advantage benefits you.

Should I Hire an IT Guy? Should I Hire an MSP?

Should-I-Hire-an-IT-Guy-Should-I-Hire-an-MSP banner

Should I Hire an IT Guy? Should I Hire an MSP?

IT guys and MSPs are popping up everywhere these days. From your local hardware store to the big box retailers, there’s no shortage of places you can find a helpful tech or an experienced service provider (or both!). Even so, that doesn’t mean they’re all equally dependable. With that in mind, here are some pros and cons to hiring IT guys and MSPs regarding your company’s IT needs.

 

Why Hire a Managed IT Service Provider?

Many companies don’t know what they’re doing when it comes to managing their IT needs. They often don’t have a dedicated team working on their technology and flounder in an overwhelmed and unproductive environment.

A managed IT service provider can help you get a handle on your technology and avoid these pitfalls. They may be able to provide solutions that are tailored to your specific needs. With an MSP, you can be sure you’re getting a full-service approach that includes expert advice, total control over all aspects of your technology, and a consistent level of service.

The managed IT service provider can handle more complicated IT tasks like backup and disaster recovery methods, network administration, cybersecurity procedures, data management services, and server management, to mention a few. In other words, think of your internal IT department as your daily IT support provider.

 

Pros and Cons When Hiring an IT Guy or MSP

Like any other business decision, there are pros and cons to hiring an IT guy or an MSP.

Hiring an IT Guy

Pros:

•       An IT guy can assist you with hardware configuration and setup.

•       An IT guy will be available to your business during peak business hours.

·        A good IT person should be able to assist your business and staff members with desktop repair, virus removal, and software issues.

Cons:

• Hiring a single IT specialist with a salary, health insurance, and other perks may be expensive depending on experience and specialty.

• It can be too much work for one individual to be the network manager, infrastructure planner, and IT support person for your IT department.

• The talents of your in-house IT specialist might only be dependent on the work they perform daily; they might not be as quick to adopt new technology.

Should-I-Hire-an-IT-Guy-Should-I-Hire-an-MSP middle

Hiring an MSP

Pros:

•       Managed service providers have access to cutting-edge equipment. Your MSP should be able to support you with workstations, networks, servers, software, and hardware, regardless of the industry you’re in.

•       The most crucial aspect of any organization, continuity, should be protected by your managed IT service provider. MSPs should be able to guarantee that your system is up and operating as much as possible by reducing the risk of downtime.

•       You have access to a group of committed IT experts who work on what they do for at least eight to nine hours daily.

•       Some remote IT support services are accessible around-the-clock.

•       Managed services are available with various services and expertise to pick from, whether in NYC or any other major city.

•       You should receive an SLA (Service Level Agreement) from your managed service provider that outlines the results you anticipate from your collaboration.

•       Managed service consultants bill firms with set monthly fees to help them better control their spending.

Cons:

•       Location is a crucial factor to consider when picking an MSP. We advise businesses to employ MSPs in the region or, at the very least, in the same city. When anything goes wrong on-site and companies have to wait for the MSP to send an IT specialist to assist fix it, the waiting game is a major drawback of joining a managed IT services provider.

•       Service level agreements (SLAs) allow MSPs to function based on the signed contracts. Expect to pay extra fees if your contract doesn’t cover something.

 

Why do you Need a Dedicated IT Team?

You’ll likely need to bring on a dedicated IT team if hiring an IT guy or an MSP. This is because most managed IT service providers will only hire entry-level IT staff. You may consider bringing a CIO or a senior IT executive who can manage other employees.

As an IT department takes shape, you may consider hiring experienced IT executives to oversee specific aspects of your technology. For instance, if your company has a significant revenue stream that relies on technology, you may want to hire someone to manage the revenue stream.

 

Conclusion

Managed IT services are here to stay. But remember that while they are cost-effective and can help your business, they are not a silver bullet. In other words, they’re a great choice to supplement your in-house IT team if you have one.

The best course of action is to understand your business thoroughly. How invested you are in your money’s capabilities, demands, and functions will determine how much you can get out of it. Whether it’s a single IT professional or a team of managed service providers, what counts is that your needs are appropriately handled.

While most MSPs focus on outsourcing technical tasks, Protected Harbor is different. It provides managed security services (MSS) to businesses, offering proactive monitoring of physical and cyber assets. Protected Harbor is the right choice if you are looking for a managed service provider that can grow with your company as it scales.

We work with businesses at all stages, from startups to enterprises. If you need ongoing assistance with managing your IT infrastructure or if you want to outsource a specific task like software development, we can help. We pride ourselves on being a one-stop shop for all your technology needs.

Contact us today for a more hands-off approach to your IT and security needs. Get a free IT Audit here.

The Importance of IT Service Provider: Truth to Power

The Importance of IT Service Provider: Truth to Power

Today’s business landscape is highly competitive, and a company must adopt a strategy to give them an edge over its competitors. Technology has become a primary source of differentiation for companies in all sectors.

You’ve probably heard about the importance of the service-provider relationship. After all, it’s a topic that discussion boards, blogs, and articles have been tackling for years. But how much of this information is theory vs. practice? If you had to implement these strategies tomorrow, would you know what action steps to take?

Welcome to another video in the series Uptime with Richard Luna discussing the importance of service-provider relations and transparency. What’s the truth to power between the promised services and the actual delivery by the IT service providers and MSPs?

 

The Importance of a Service-Provider Relationship

When people in the business world talk about service-provider relationships, they refer to the partnerships businesses build with their partners. These could include vendors, suppliers, distributors, IT service providers, managed service providers, or system integrators. A service-provider relationship is designed to help both parties thrive and succeed.

When you partner with a company to provide essential technology services, like hosting, IT infrastructure, security, or managed services, you’re entering into a partnership that will benefit both of you in different ways. For example, let’s say you run a chain of car dealerships that need an IT infrastructure to process credit card payments and keep your staff connected. If you work with a managed services provider (MSP) to help you with these tasks, you’re entering into a partnership that will benefit you in different ways.

 

Truth in Transparency: Know What You’re Buying

IT service providers are critical to any business’s success, but they are not all created equally. Many service providers offer various technology-related services, each with unique value propositions, business models, and strengths and weaknesses. That’s why it’s important to partner with an IT service provider that is a good fit for your company.

Partnering with a service provider that is a good fit for your company can help you avoid common pitfalls that can disrupt your business and negatively impact your bottom line, such as paying too much for services you don’t need or are overpriced, or not receiving the level of support and maintenance your company needs to thrive.

Before signing up with an IT service provider, ensure you understand exactly what you’re buying to ensure the relationship is a good fit for your business. You don’t want to sign up with a service provider that is overpriced or doesn’t offer a solution that lines up with your business needs.

 

The Importance of a Good SLA

The service-level agreement (SLA) is critical to any managed services agreement. The SLA outlines the service provider’s obligations, such as the level of customer support, the amount of downtime, and the uptime of critical systems. It also includes the customer’s obligations.

It is essential to make sure the SLA is in your favor. If you are a customer working with an MSP, the SLA is your opportunity to hold the service provider accountable for their promises by clearly laying out what you expect from them. It is also an opportunity for you to establish a baseline for performance.

If you are an MSP, the SLA is your opportunity to outline the commitments you make to your customers. It is also an opportunity for you to set a baseline for performance. For example, if your SLA states that you will have a technician respond to an issue within four hours, that is the expectation you need to live up to every single time.

 

Takeaways

It is a strategic technology partner offering more than just a product or service. It is a partner that provides expertise, guidance, and support to help you grow your business through IT services.

Protected Harbor is not your typical MSP. It’s a managed service provider with a twist. The company specializes in cloud-based software solutions, including data backup, recovery, ransomware, and other cybersecurity services. Our team of MSP experts works with you every step of the way.

We conduct a thorough assessment of your business and technology landscape. We then customize a solution that meets your exact needs. Contact one of our experts today for a free IT Audit and discover why we are different.

Non-profit Computer Services

Non-profit Computer Services: Building the Foundation for Your Non-Profit’s Success

Non-profit organizations are often driven by passion, not profits. But that doesn’t stop non-profits from needing technology to operate efficiently and thrive. Technology can support growth in several ways: streamlining operations, making collaboration with partners and volunteers easier, or increasing the organization’s visibility to potential donors.

Whether your non-profit is just starting or looking for ways to improve efficiency, these tips will help you better manage your non-profit’s IT needs. Here is the next video in the series Uptime with Richard Luna. This blog post will cover why your non-profit should invest in IT services and how to find the right partner.

 

All Has to be Seamless

When it comes to non-profit IT services, the tech experience must be seamless for your internal team and end users. Your services should integrate well with your existing tools and be easy to set up. They should also provide a straightforward user experience—whether someone is using your website or accessing a hosted application, they should not be overwhelmed by technology.

 

Provide a Uniform Interface

One of your organization’s most influential services is a uniform interface for managing your environment. You may have one or several application or platform environments. You may also have one or more partner organizations that provide you with internal or external services, such as email systems, hosted applications, and data storage.

These multiple environments and partners may need to be integrated, monitored, and managed in a single interface. Your non-profit IT services partner should be able to help you do this. In particular, you’ll want to ensure the partner can provide a single pane of glass to manage your environments, no matter where they are hosted, so you can have one view of all your operations.

 

Finding the right partner

Finding the right IT partner for your non-profit is more critical than the cost. It’s about meeting your needs, including your ability to collaborate, manage operations, and measure results. Before you begin the search for non-profit IT services, do some self-reflection on your organization’s goals and objectives. Are you seeking a turnkey solution? Will you need to staff the project internally? What are your most prominent non-profit IT challenges? These are all critical questions to consider when looking for the right partner for your non-profit.

 

Conclusion

When it comes to non-profit IT services, you want to be sure to select a partner that will help you meet your strategic goals. You want to make sure the partner can provide the level of service you need and that it can scale as your needs grow. You also want to ensure the partner is committed to positive social impact and can show you how their technology and services are helping other non-profits succeed.

With the right partner like Protected Harbor and the right level of support, there is no limit to what your non-profit can accomplish. Protected Harbor is dedicated to offering scalable and affordable solutions and is aware of the unique challenges faced by non-profit organizations. We have spent years planning IT infrastructures for NGOs to ensure they receive the IT support required for both short- and long-term objectives while being productive.

To find out more about how our IT solutions may assist your non-profit organization in achieving its objectives, get in touch with Protected Harbor for a free consultation and IT Audit.

GoodFirm.co Recognizes Protected Harbor as a Top Cloud Computing Company

GoodFirm.co Recognizes Protected Harbor banner

 

GoodFirms.co Recognizes Protected Harbor as a Top Cloud Computing Company

 

goodfirms logo

Today, Protected Harbor was recognized by GoodFirms, a leading review platform for software and service providers, as one of the Top Cloud Computing Companies in the United States.

GoodFirms is a revolutionary research and review platform with a worldwide database of software service providers. To link service providers and their relevant customers, GoodFirms analyses the company on three crucial parameters: Quality, Reliability, and Ability. Customer reviews and published interview articles are also considered for the evaluation process.

Here is what GoodFirms’ Anna Stark had to say about Protected Harbor’s IT Support and Cloud Computing Solutions:

Started in 2009, Protected Harbor delivers technology stability and durability for organizations, resulting in flawless operations of desktops, data centers, and applications. The company implements a Technology Improvement Plan (TIP) that involves industry best practices to resolve issues. The TIP offers protection with the help of unique Application Outage Avoidance (AOA) technology and support from the Support Resolution Team.

Interestingly, Protected Harbor works with organizations to solve more complex problems and be more responsive. The company focuses on direct end-user support while assuring that the company’s back-end operations like web servers and computer networking run effortlessly.

The team strives hard to resolve issues before they become problems, enabling organizations not to be worried about the technology. The company aims to turn technology back into a benefit and not a cost center. The team finds long-term solutions that help clients focus on their business processes. The clients can have reliable, durable, and secure business technology solutions with Protected Harbor.

Indeed, the Protected Harbor guard businesses and their IT operations from attacks, whether known or unknown, that include Ransomware, Malware, Viruses, and Phishing. The customers can efficiently make their business IT strong and keep their business protected and safe from ransomware attacks, viruses, useless subscriptions, phishing attacks, and end-user problems with Protected Harbour.

 

Protected Harbor aims to ensure clients achieve optimal technological productivity. The company treats clients as partners and thoughtfully listens to the client’s business and technology issues, and delivers technology solutions tailored to the client’s business requirements.

Protected Harbor offers a wide range of secure colocation solutions for healthcare organizations to handle healthcare challenges. Team Protected Harbor enables clients to protect their desktop issues such as ransomware, malware, and virus protection. Clients have complete remote access and 24 hour, 365-day support.

The unified VoIP solution and VoIP software phone system, video conferencing, and mobile app are easy to use and effortlessly protect clients’ phones. Plus, the clients can have the power of desktop QuickBooks and the security and convenience of a remote desktop connection with Protected Books. The protected data center and hosting solution virtually eliminate crashes, failures, and outages.

This one-stop technology company offers solutions that involve software, hardware infrastructure, cloud migration, disaster recovery, security, and cloud back-up. The company offers customers remote cloud access, 99.99% uptime, proactive monitoring, and private cloud backup.

The team of experts enables clients to get value from the virtual office-hosted solutions and efficiently work with businesses of all sizes to carry out business operations faster. The clients can migrate their systems to the cloud to reduce and control IT costs, enhance security and disaster preparedness, minimize maintenance, and increase the workforce’s productivity.

Consequently, the excellent cloud computing services enable Protected Harbor to gain a prestigious position amongst the renowned cloud computing companies in the United States at GoodFirms.

Apart from the services mentioned above, Protected Harbor delivers specialized IT services for small and medium-sized businesses. The certified IT engineers focus on keeping clients’ businesses going. The team builds reliable IT infrastructure with a strategic approach that drives clients’ business growth.

 

About the Author

goodfirm authorWorking as a Content Writer at GoodFirms, Anna Stark bridges the gap between service seekers and service providers. Anna’s dominant role is to figure out company achievements and critical attributes and put them into words. She strongly believes in the charm of words and leverages new approaches that work, including new concepts that enhance the firm’s identity.

Why IT Experience Matters:  

Why IT Experience Matters

Today’s market has become highly cut-throat for small and medium businesses. Keeping up with the furious pace of change and staying ahead is a huge challenge for these organizations. Richard Luna, CEO of Protected Harbor touches on this topic while he discusses the importance of Why IT Experience Matters. You can also find topics like this and more within his video series Uptime With Richard Luna which is posted every Thursday.

To succeed in this digital world, SMBs (Small & Midsized Businesses) need to partner with an IT Service Provider or MSP (Managed Service Provider) to help them manage their technology while also handling all of their day-to-day operational tasks. An IT Service Provider usually comes with several benefits such as cost savings, scalability, and efficiency from an outsourced IT department.

If you’re considering partnering with an MSP or are already working with one, you should know why IT experience matters most when it comes time to choose one. Below we will explain the importance of experience and what you should for when vetting your options.

 

The Importance of Experience

Experience is a crucial factor in determining a provider’s quality of service.

First, it helps you to gauge their level of proficiency. Second, previous experience, especially in dealing with various types of businesses and clients, offers insight into how an IT Service Provider or MSP will approach your partnership. Experience is the key to ensuring that your computers and other IT infrastructure function optimally and are protected from cyber threats.

With experience, MSPs know what works best for different businesses and can help you in selecting the right technology for your particular needs. However, it is also essential to keep in mind that MSPs are not infallible. No one can promise 100% uptime, nor can they guarantee that their clients will not experience any outages or service interruptions because they vary from one MSP to the next. In short, nothing is guaranteed. Even though your MSP can help you avoid many problems, plenty can still occur.

 

The First Rule of IT: Panic

Why IT Experience Matter middle

Panic is the first act when an emergency occurs. This can affect your own staff, and IT staff may not be available at the time. Luckily, MSPs are prepared for any crisis. Most MSPs work with a standard response time of 30 minutes, which applies to a wide range of issues while some promise a faster 15-minute response time. When an MSP works with you, it is essential to understand their response time and the steps they take to resolve an issue. This can be crucial in determining the quality of service that clients receive.

When an emergency occurs, the first question that arises is what’s happening. The most typical answers we get are we just lost a cluster node (a part of the data center) or the main firewall blew up, knocking out thousands of customers.

In this situation, Richard Luna, CEO of Protected Harbor, recommends focusing on what’s working. In a crisis, this is the best thing to do; it will tell you what you can move to, what infrastructure can be used and what’s functional at this point.

 

Emergencies Occur, and They Can be Resolved

Experienced MSPs or IT Service Providers are successful if they have prepared for everything. They understand that emergencies can occur at any time and must be able to respond. Whether it’s a power surge, a flood in the building, a fire, or an earthquake, all of these disasters can cause severe damage to your IT infrastructure, which can impact your staff, your customers, and your business as a whole. All of these issues can be resolved, though, especially if you have an experienced and trustworthy MSP ready to respond.

 

Hiring an MSP is Not Always the Best Solution

When you’re in a hurry to get a new IT infrastructure, you may be tempted to hire an MSP on an “as needed” basis but you may end up paying more for the work performed and not getting everything you actually need in the long run. If you receive services from a third party, you don’t have much say in the configuration of your IT system. You cannot change your hardware or software whenever you need to also, you may not have access to all the necessary backups and other information you need for your business continuity plan. If you work with an MSP on an “as needed” basis, you do not have any guarantee that you will receive the same team in case of a problem or an emergency.

 

The Optimal Solution: Experienced People With A Plan

When working with an MSP, you should look for experienced people with a plan. The team should also have a proven track record of success when working with other clients in your industry. In short, you should look for MSPs with a proven track record. When you work with an MSP, you should be able to trust their team altogether while they should also be able to adapt to any changes and know how to solve problems as they arise. You should be able to work with an MSP without worrying about the issues that your IT infrastructure may face.

“The optimal solution in this situation is a blend.” Richard explains that in order to get the best, you will need to have the best of the minds, experienced people who have been through crises before and understand the long view of the technology, intermixed with fresh minds or a brand new staff will give a terrific blend of a solid, communicative, collaborative team.

This is an approach that we use internally at Protected Harbor.

 

Summing up

How you handle your business’s IT infrastructure can make or break your organization.

The best way to ensure that you have a strong IT foundation is to partner with an experienced MSP. When you choose an MSP with experience, you can be sure that your IT systems will run smoothly and efficiently. You can expect your systems to be managed appropriately, and they can also help you to use resources in your systems more efficiently. With an MSP, you can rest assured that your IT team will be ready to respond when an emergency occurs.

While most IT service providers or MSPs offer a one-size-fits-all approach, Protected Harbor has been set apart from the competition by its focus on providing an individually tailored experience to its clients. Whether it’s an enterprise company or a mid-sized business, you can expect to be treated as an individual.

If you’re looking for managed IT services for your company, you deserve more than a cookie-cutter solution. You deserve a trusted advisor who understands your business and technology challenges and works with you to create a solution that meets your unique needs.

Protected Harbor is not your typical MSP. We have the experience and focus on solving issues for our clients, not selling service plans. We work with you to build a relationship based on trust and transparency. We have a 95% client retention rate and an average of 15 minute ticket response times. Don’t just take our word for it; check our testimonials.

Contact us today to get a free IT Audit and experience for yourself why IT experience matters.

Human IT Errors

Human IT Errors

Human IT Errors:

What the Heck Do They Mean?

Human error is an inevitable part of any complex system, especially one as vast as IT. IT relies on humans to perform even the most minor tasks which unfortunately can lead to both minor and major mistakes under stress or pressure. Even just the slightest mistake can affect an entire organization and its users.

This post will explore what human error is, provide examples of human errors within IT systems, and the best practices to prevent them.

 

What is Human Error in IT?

A human error typically refers to an issue that was brought on by a human end-user rather than by computer technology or software. The abbreviation PEBKAC (Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair) is occasionally used to designate a problem brought on by human mistakes.

Because humans are creatures of habit and occasionally choose to get around security protocols rather than adapt, human errors remain a problem.

Another cause is that people frequently feel both rushed and overworked, which can result in sloppiness, particularly while scrolling through emails. Most individuals by now have probably received some form of training when it comes to recognizing phishing emails. Still, sometimes the simplest of steps are frequently skipped because verifying links and manually typing known, trustworthy domains into browser windows takes time.

Fact check: According to IDG’s 2021 Security Priorities Study, employees falling prey to phishing or other non-malicious security policy violations were to blame for 44% of security incidents in 2021, up from 36% the year before. This was the case even though approximately 50% of respondents gave priority to personnel security awareness and training.

In terms of cybersecurity, the average human error costs roughly $133 per record. And it can take businesses 242 days to find and fix a problem caused by such unintentional actions.

 

5 of the Most Common Types of Human Error in the Workplace

Neglecting Safety

Employees tend to disregard even the most basic safety precautions overtime because they’ve grown either so accustomed to their jobs or they’ve garnered a lack appreciation. Workplace accidents that could have otherwise been entirely avoidable often originate from neglecting implemented safety protocols.

“Messing Around”

Workplace camaraderie can help to increase morale, but when it turns into horseplay, it can be hazardous. Physical and verbal horseplay can be dangerous, resulting in accidental equipment and product damage, co-worker conflicts, and even personal injuries. Aside from physical damage, standard protocols could potentially become slighted if an employee becomes distracted by another co-worker. This could lead to an employee accidentally skipping over a very important safety measure.

Fatigue

Employees are far more likely to have a workplace mishap when they are too exhausted to safely perform their fundamental job duties. Tired employees can disregard the basic safety precautions, nod off at work, or even click onto a link they otherwise meant to disregard. If this happens frequently, it could warrant a human error investigation.

Fast working

An individual who works quickly to finish a task or meet a deadline may intentionally omit essential details. A hasty worker may fail to stop and look over a potentially hazardous email or IT protocol.

Poor Training

Sometimes an employer can be liable for a workplace incident since human error is not just limited to employees. Workplace mishaps can be guaranteed when a manager rushes through employee training or omits crucial training matter.

 

Human IT Errors smallHow to Prevent Human Error in IT?

The most excellent approach for companies that want to protect their sensitive data is to take the proper steps in preventing employee error. It is not acceptable to maintain your cybersecurity policy in its current form only because there was no immediate harm to your company.

Utilizing a sophisticated, comprehensive approach for minimizing insider threats and boosting your cybersecurity is the only method to limiting human error. You can successfully safeguard your business against employee security mishaps by using the following practices and solutions:

 

Update the Corporate Security Policy:

Your security policy should detail how sensitive information should be handled including; who has access to it plus what security and monitoring tools should be used. Review your security policies and ensure the document adheres to all current best practices.

Educate Your Staff:

Inform your staff of the potential dangers and explain the potentially costly and dangerous results of any blunders. It would help if you informed your team of the security concerns that these mistakes entail. Ensure that everyone is aware of and willing to abide by the business security policy.

Apply the Least Privilege Principle:

By denying all access, you may secure data access quickly and effectively. Privileged access should only be granted when absolutely necessary. You can avoid accidental data breaches and data deletions caused by employees who aren’t allowed to deal with sensitive data in the first place if users can only access the data they need for their jobs.

Keep an Eye on Your Staff: To identify suspicious activity and protect your system from hacker attacks and data leaks, you need to use a user activity monitoring software. Staff monitoring software like Protected Harbor is the most dependable solution to guarantee precise identification and avoidance of security mistakes.

 

Final Words:

Don’t Blame the Humans!

This article shows that human error is only natural. It’s impossible to eradicate completely, but there are ways to minimize it. To do this, employ the right people for your open positions, create a culture where mistakes are encouraged but must be learned from, and create a streamlined environment. With these factors in place, you can significantly reduce the number of errors made within your IT department and across your organization.

The strategy we employ at Protected Harbor challenges you to reconsider the way you see human risk. Untrained end-users may be your organization’s weakest security link. Still, with the correct tools and training, you can make them your first line of defence against any attack or breach, protecting your company in the long run.

Effective security awareness training can lower human error. Find out how Protected Harbor helps businesses promote secure behavior with engaging, intelligently automated cyber security awareness training. Contact us today!

Why Microservices Are a Game-Changer for the Future of IT

Microservices Are a Game Changer

Why Microservices Are a Game-Changer for the Future of IT

New IT solutions must handle the ever-increasing volume of data and information while remaining flexible enough to adapt quickly and efficiently to changing business demands.

The need for agility has never been more urgent for today’s businesses. The pace of digital transformation is getting faster and faster with no apparent end in sight. To meet these challenges, enterprises must find solutions that can keep up with the speed of business change. This blog will explain what microservices are, how they can help your organization remain agile, and how they can help you achieve a more nimble IT system as you move forward into the future of your business.

What Is a Microservice?

A microservice is a software system built as a set of small independent modules with particular concerns and functions. Each microservice can be built and deployed independently and work together with other microservices in order to deliver a complete product or service. The main challenge when building software systems is to find the right balance between functionality, quality, and time-to-market. One option is to build an extensive application that can meet all the requirements from the get-go, but this approach is often challenging and costly in terms of resources. Another option is to break down the project into smaller, more manageable pieces and build a set of microservices that can be released and deployed independently.

Why Are Microservices a Game-Changer for IT?

With growing complexity and the need to scale in mind, organizations are now moving towards microservices architecture (MSA) to break down IT systems into smaller, more manageable parts. MSA is essentially a distributed system approach, where applications are broken down into smaller modules (microservices), and each service is hosted in its separate container or virtual machine. The essential factor to note here is that each microservice can be scaled independently, enabling you to handle the growing demand for particular parts of the system without scaling the entire system. By using microservices, businesses can deploy new software solutions much faster and achieve quicker time-to-market. At the same time, microservices are also helping IT systems become more reliable and scalable.

Microservices Are a Game Changer smallWhat Are The Benefits of Microservices?

As microservices help you build more flexible systems, they also help you achieve several important benefits for your business. These include:

  • Greater agility – The ability to quickly change and adapt to your customers’ needs is vital for future business success. With microservices, you can respond much quicker to market changes, new requirements, and customer feedback, thanks to the more elegant nature of the system.
  • Greater scalability – Microservices are particularly useful when you need to scale your system on the fly, especially in cases of high demand. You can scale up or down specific parts of the system as required, and therefore avoid downtime.
  • Improved quality – By designing with quality in mind, you can build a reliable and robust system. End-to-end testing is particularly important when working with microservices, as it helps to ensure the system works as a whole.
  • Improved security – When designed and implemented correctly, Microservices can help make your systems more secure. For example, microservices that handle sensitive information can be securely isolated from non-critical microservices.

When to Use Microservices?

Microservices are particularly useful for complex projects that require scalability, agility, and high levels of flexibility. They make sense, especially in situations where you are working with large and complex organizations where communication between different departments and teams is challenging. Microservices can also make sense in cases where you should be able to scale up or down quickly depending on the level of demand for a particular part of the system.

In general, to decide whether to use a microservices architecture, you should think about the following questions: What are the project requirements? What type of functionality does the system require? Is your team capable of designing a system that meets these requirements? In other words, microservices make sense when you have a large, complex project with significant functionality. At the same time, the project is also highly flexible and can easily be scaled depending on the requirements.

Key Takeaway

Microservices help you build more flexible systems that respond quickly to your customers and business needs. With microservices, you can scale up or down individual parts of the system as required, avoiding downtime. At the same time, microservices are easier to maintain and manage.

Small, autonomous services that are easy to change and upgrade are the new standard in a digital world. The ability to develop, test, and deploy small services faster can impact a company’s bottom line by reducing overall development time and quickening the delivery of new features to customers. The good news is that there are several techniques to speed up the development process of your business. Protected Harbor provides expert-level microservices to help you stay on top of things. We specialize in providing a software development approach that focuses on breaking down large systems into smaller pieces to improve efficiency, maintainability, and flexibility and help businesses achieve improved scalability, reliability, and agility. And that’s not it. We are currently providing free IT audit to the companies. Contact us today for one.

Information Technology IT Trends in 2021

What are the new IT Trends in 2021?

 

We’ve been so deep in this pandemic that some of us have forgotten what life was like before it. Remember we used to get together for lunch, go to a ball game, celebrate holidays together, and not wear masks! 2021 will begin with more of the same of 2020 but will shift towards “normal”.
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

When is anyone’s guess? But what will happen with technology? It can be argued that without technology, the economy and education would have taken even a bigger hit than it did in 2020. Platforms like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Hangouts allowed us to work in a virtual world. Companies like Protected Harbor’s clients who were smart enough to set up a virtual desktop make the move to “Work From Home” seamlessly.
So when the work moves back to normal, what will technology look like? What trends will continue from 2020? What new trends will emerge?

[gem_divider margin_top=”70″][gem_divider margin_top=”70″]
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 1: Drug development revolution with advanced Covid-19 testing and vaccine development

 

Operation Warp Speed changed the way that drugs are developed, tested and trialed. Assuming the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines prove to be safe (and we feel strongly they will), the speed in which vaccines are brought to market will increase dramatically. Both Pfizer and Moderna developed mRNA vaccines, the first in human history! We expect more innovations throughout 2021.

Also, COVID self-tests kits are being developed all over the world. We expect this trend to continue and perhaps move to self-test kits for other diseases.

it technology development
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 2: Continued expansion of remote working and videoconferencing

This area was already gaining lots of traction going into 2020 and grew exponentially during the pandemic.

This area has seen rapid growth during the pandemic, and it will likely continue growing in 2021.  Many of our clients have realized they are just as productive with a remote work force as they were before.  Some of them have permanently moved to a “work from home” environment.

Zoom, which grew from a startup in 2011 to going public in 2019, became a household name during the pandemic. Other existing large corporate tools such as Cisco’s Webex, Microsoft’s TeamsGoogle HangoutsGoToMeeting, and Verizon’s BlueJeans are also providing state-of-the-art videoconferencing systems, facilitating remote work across the globe.

Many new ventures are emerging in the remote working sector. Startups BluescapeEloopsFigmaSlab, and Tandem have all provided visual collaboration platforms enabling teams to create and share content, interact, track projects, train employees, run virtual team-building activities, and more.

These tools also help distributed teams keep track of shared learning and documentation. Users can create a virtual office that replicates working together in person by letting colleagues communicate and collaborate with one another easily.

remote working from home
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 3: Contactless delivery and shipping remain as the new normal

Due to the pandemic, the US has seen a 20% increase in customers who prefer contactless delivery.  Companies who have led in this space are DoorDash, Postmates, Instacard, Grubhub and Uber Eats.  These companies will continue to flourish in 2021.  Trend # 10 (autonomous driving) may be combined with contactless delivery to offer a truly futuristic way of delivering goods and foods.

contatclessdeliveryandshipping
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 4: Telehealth and telemedicine flourish

Telehealth visits have surged by 50 percent compared with pre-pandemic levels. IHS Technology predicted that 70 million Americans would use telehealth by 2020. Since then, Forrester Research predicted the number of U.S. virtual care visits will reach almost a billion early in 2021.

Teladoc Health, Amwell, Livongo Health, One Medical, and Humana are some of the public companies offering telehealth services to meet their current needs.

Startups are not far behind. Startups like MDLive, MeMD, iCliniq, K Health, 98point6, Sense.ly, and Eden Health have also contributed toward meeting the growing needs in 2020 and will continue offering creative solutions in 2021. Beyond telehealth, in 2021 we can expect to see health care advancements in biotech and A.I., as well as machine learning opportunities (example: Suki AI) to support diagnosis, admin work, and robotic health care.

In many ways, patients prefer Telehealth and virtual doctor’s appointments. There’s no more waiting forever in the waiting room, and the doctor simply video calls you when he’s ready.
As Telehealth grows in 2021, tech companies will need to ensure they are HIPAA compliant, and that videos are kept private, and free from hackers.

Telehealth and telemedicine flourish
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

Trend 5: Online education and e-learning as part of the educational system

Covid-19 fast-tracked the e-learning and online education industry. During this pandemic, 190 countries have enforced nationwide school closures at some point, affecting almost 1.6 billion people globally.

There is a major opportunity with schools, colleges, and even coaching centers conducting classes via videoconferencing. Many institutions have actually been recommended to pursue a portion of their curriculum online even after everything returns to normal.

The challenge in 2020 was the availability of high-speed internet, especially in low-income neighborhoods.  As the economy recovers in 2021, we expect more and more households will have this access.

Over time, we expect internet access to be considered just as critical as food, water and electricity.

Online education and e-learning as part of the educational system
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 6: Increased development of 5G infrastructure, new applications, and utilities

There is no doubt that demand for higher-speed internet and a shift toward well-connected homes, smart cities, and autonomous mobility have pushed the advancement of 5G-6G internet technology. In 2021, we will see new infrastructure and utility or application development updates both from the large corporations and startups.

Many telcos are on track to deliver 5G, with Australia having rolled it out before Covid-19. Verizon announced a huge expansion of its 5G network in October 2020, which will reach more than 200 million people. In China, 5G deployment has been happening rapidly. There are more than 380 operators currently investing in 5G. More than 35 countries have already launched commercial 5G services.

Startups like Movandi are working to help 5G transfer data at greater distances; startups including Novalume help municipalities manage their public lighting network and smart-city data through sensors. Nido Robotics is using drones to explore the seafloor.

Through 5G networks, these drones help navigate better and use IoT to help communicate with devices on board. Startups like Seadronix from South Korea use 5G to help power autonomous ships. The 5G networks enable devices to work together in real-time and help enable vessels to travel unmanned.

The development of 5G and 6G technology will drive smart-city projects globally and will support the autonomous mobility sector in 2021.

[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]
[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 7: A.I., robotics, internet of things, and industrial automation grow rapidly

In 2021, we expect to see huge demand and rapid growth of artificial intelligence (A.I.) and industrial automation technology. As manufacturing and supply chains are returning to full operation, manpower shortages will become a serious issue. Automation, with the help of A.I., robotics, and the internet of things, will be a key alternative solution to operate manufacturing.

Some of the top technology-providing companies enabling industry automation with A.I. and robotics integration include:

UBTech Robotics (China), CloudMinds (U.S.), Bright Machines (U.S.), Roobo (China), Vicarious (U.S.), Preferred Networks (Japan), Fetch Robotics (U.S.), Covariant (U.S.), Locus Robotics (U.S.), Built Robotics (U.S.), Kindred Systems (Canada), and XYZ Robotics (China).

Also, as we discuss in Trend # 10 (autonomous driving), AI has played, and will continue to play, a key role in autonomous driving, as cars “learn” how humans react to certain road conditions.

[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 8: Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies usage rises

Augmented reality and virtual reality have grown significantly in 2020. These immersive technologies are now part of everyday life, from entertainment to business. The arrival of Covid-19 has prompted this technology adoption as businesses turned to the remote work model, with communication and collaboration extending over to AR and VR.

The immersive technologies from AR and VR innovations enable an incredible source of transformation across all sectors. AR avatars, AR indoor navigation, remote assistance, integration of A.I. with AR and VR, mobility AR, AR cloud, virtual sports events, eye tracking, and facial expression recognition will see major traction in 2021. Adoption of AR and VR will accelerate with the growth of the 5G network and expanding internet bandwidth.

Companies like MicrosoftConsagousQuytechRealWorld OneChetuGramercy TechScantaIndiaNICGroove Jones, etc. will play a significant role in shaping our world in the near future, not only because of AR’s and VR’s various applications but also as the flag carrier of all virtualized technologies.

[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 9: Continued growth in micromobility

While the micro-mobility market had seen a natural slowdown at the beginning of the Covid-19 spread, this sector has already recovered to the pre-Covid growth level. E-bikes and e-scooters’ usage is soaring since they are viewed as convenient transportation alternatives that also meet social distancing norms. Compared to the pre-Covid days, the micro-mobility market is expected to grow by 9 percent for private micro-mobility and by 12 percent for shared micro-mobility.

There are hundreds of miles of new bike lanes created in anticipation. Milan, Brussels, Seattle, Montreal, New York, and San Francisco have each introduced 20-plus miles of dedicated cycle paths. The U.K. government announced that diesel and petrol-fueled car sales will be banned after 2030, which has also driven interest in micro-mobility as one of the alternative options.

Startups are leading the innovation in micro-mobility. BirdLimeDott, Skip, Tier, and Voi are key startups leading the global micro-mobility industry.

China has already seen several micro-mobility startups reach unicorn status, including Ofo, Mobike, and Hellobike.

[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Trend 10: Ongoing autonomous driving innovation

We will see major progress in autonomous driving technology during 2021.  Tesla has clearly led the way.  Tesla’s Autopilot not only offers lane centering and automatic lane changes, but, from this year, can also recognize speed signs and detect green lights.

Honda recently announced that it will mass-produce autonomous vehicles, which under certain conditions will not require any driver intervention.  Ford is also joining the race, anticipating an autonomous driving cars ridesharing service launch in 2021. The company could also make such vehicles available to certain buyers as early as 2026. Other automakers, including Mercedes-Benz, are also trying to integrate some degree of autonomous driving technology in their new models from 2021. GM intends to roll out its hands-free-driving Super Cruise feature to 22 vehicles by 2023.

The fierce market competition is also accelerating self-driving technology growth in other companies, including Uber, Lyft and Waymo. Billions of dollars have been spent in acquiring startups in this domain: GM acquired Cruise for $1 billion; Uber acquired Otto for $680 million; Ford acquired Argo AI for $1 billion; and Intel acquired Mobileye for $15.3 billion.

[gem_divider margin_top=”70″]

 

Looking ahead

Technology development in 2021 will be somewhat of a continuation of 2020, but the influence of Covid-19 will evolve during the year. Many of our new behaviors will become part of the new normal in 2021, helping drive major technological and business innovations.

Protected Harbor continues to monitor these new technologies and look to bring them to their clients if and when there is a business need.  For more information on Protected Harbor, please visit Protected Harbor