The worst IT problems in your small business are always the ones that you don’t know anything about, since these are the hardest to detect, and if you don’t know that you have them, they could be causing any amount of damage without you being able to react at all. Here are a few such problems.
Having secure connections is more important in some areas as opposed to others. While you can farm out some of these problems to managed services, it’s also possible often solve these problems on your own. For example, if you’re in a Skype call with a client, it’s often actually less secure than you might think, partially due to the fact that you might be used to more traditional phone services that tend to be more secure due to the fact that they tend to be more secure due to the nature of landlines. But since a call over a VoIP is going over the Internet, security is definitely an issue. This is especially the case if you’re using unsecured WiFi at a hotspot in a local coffee shop or other location that offers this for free. It’s also a good idea to use a virtual private network to rout the traffic through so that it’s more secure, especially one that has decent encryption. Windows 8 has a built-in function for this, though you’ll need to find a network to use.
Another common problem that often tends to leave small business owners behind is the problem of possible data leaks of sensitive information. If you entrust information to other parties, they can always leave out their business computer where it shouldn’t be, or otherwise be less than careful with it. One good solution for this is to allow Bring Your Own Device solutions, or BYOD. This means that you let employees use their own gadgets for accessing information, but you keep that information in a place that isn’t stored on the actual device. This is where you can solve the problem by using cloud storage options. That way, the information stays secure on your server, and your employees can access it when they need to do so. You can set it so they can only modify it internally, without actually take any information out, and you can have the sessions expire after a while so that if they lose the device, the information doesn’t end up in the hands who shouldn’t have access to it. Overall, it’s a good idea to try and watch out for these problems yourself rather than relying on an IT service to bail you out.
Another common issue that often flies underneath the radar of some business owners is the use of illegal software. If you just tell someone to get something like Microsoft Word for a variety of computers, they may end up with illegal versions if they aren’t being careful. There are a number of news stories every year that outline the fact that you can get in a lot of trouble for not having properly registered software.