As the CEO, CTO, or owner of your business, you need to have a certain level of trust in your in-house computer guy or outsourced I.T. support company. At J – I.T. Outsource, we know this is important, so our team works hard to earn our client’s trust by working in their best interests. We’ll even go so far as to tell our clients what they should and shouldn’t trust us with.
Who are you trusting with your business? After all, your technology people – whether they are an in-house employee or outsourced I.T. provider – probably has access to all of your company’s data and a good amount of control over your systems.
When Your I.T. Support Has All the Control
But what if that employee decides to quit? Or gets sick or injured? Have they documented (securely!) how to access systems, backups, and product keys? Is there anyone else who knows how things work?
Or what if you’re using an hourly computer guy? Not only do they have the keys to the kingdom, but they’re not even part of “your kingdom.” Do you know where and how they’re storing access to your information? What if they go out of business, get too busy, or just generally go “radio silent?” It happens far too often… many of my clients reach out to me because their repair guy “ghosted” them.
And, what if you’ve got an I.T. support provider, but you’re not really happy with their services? Is turning it over to a new network management company going to be simple and easy? Or are they doing to have to fight to get access to YOUR own business?
What YOU Should Control
Here’s what YOU must have access to, even if you never need it. Take this checklist to your in-house employee, your hourly computer repair guy, or your I.T. support company. If they can’t or won’t show you where this information is securely stored, it’s time to look for someone who will.
- Do you know all the passwords? Every machine and internet-related device on your network has (or should have) a password. If your current provider or employee is the only one who knows what they are then you cannot view, change, or update the system settings. You should also know the passwords to your company’s database and accounting package so you can change them whenever there is a change in I.T. providers.
- Do you know where your backup files are stored and if they are being stored properly?
If you are like most business owners, you’re too busy dealing with the “crisis of the day” to think about system backups and probably leave tasks to your internal expert. If your database gets fried and your tech is nowhere to be found, you might be in a lot of trouble if you don’t know where it is.
- Do you have all the product keys to your software? Product keys are long, alphanumeric codes, usually printed on the back of the software’s packing material, which are required to install the software. Once installed, you don’t need them again…UNLESS your system becomes unstable and you need to reinstall the program. Always make sure you have these stored in a secure location.
- Do you know where all the software disks are stored? For those few programs that aren’t in the cloud, taking a minute to organize and store your software disks in a secure place can save you a considerable chunk of money in the event that you need to restore a program on your computer. If you don’t have the disk, you might be forced to buy the software again.
- Do you know what routine maintenance must be done to your network? We know that the very idea of learning about and keeping track of all the servers, workstations, and peripherals on your network probably gives you a major headache, but it is important information to maintain. If your expert leaves without providing you with this information, you may need to pay a new professional to take this work over. Our on-boarding process includes complete documentation – if needed (and it usually is) – of a new client’s system.
- Do you know how to protect yourself from an ugly security breach if your computer expert leaves? What happens if you let go of your in-house I.T. “guru” and he or she still has access to your company’s network? As soon as humanly possible, you should disable his or her access, including remote access to your network.
If your in-house person can’t immediately show you where they have this information, then they don’t have it organized or just don’t have it and you have a problem. If your current I.T. provider doesn’t want to share it with you, or also puts you off, then you have a problem there. Any I.T. support company who is confident about the quality of their services should welcome the opportunity to provide you with the answers.
If You’re Not a Client, We’ll STILL Help You Take Back Control!
If you are not comfortable with the documentation that your current I.T. support provider has given you… or you’re not sure if what they’ve given you covers what you should have …
If you feel like you get push back from your computer company every time you ask them for a password to YOUR network …
If you are not 100% confident that your current I.T. guru wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize your network or your business…
If you’ve ever been suspicious about the way your in-house computer guy seems to hoard information…
Then you’ll want to reach out to use for a free network policy and procedure evaluation. This audit will provide you with a checklist of items that need to be addressed in order to keep your computer network up and running by preventing outages, downtime and securing your data from loss, hackers, viruses, spyware, and a host of other problems, including a rogue I.T. guy.
Call us today at (559) 485-4335 to find out what you’re missing and how we can help you get it all together.