telanova Blog

telanova: the outsourced IT team that feels like your own

Providing advice, consultancy, helpdesk, monitoring and maintenance, updates, upgrades, security: all the things your in-house team would do, but better and at a fraction of the cost and hassle.

Keep your WiFi and phones running during a power outage

We recently replaced a UPS for one of our customers.

So what’s a UPS? It’s a Universal Power Supply. It’s a giant intelligent battery that keeps equipment going in the event of a power cut - it will shut down the servers before the battery runs out.

Our customer had frequent power cuts and asked if the UPS could also keep the internet and phones powered - that’s at least 5 extra pieces of equipment - for at least 45 minutes. So we identified everything that needed power to keep the internet and phones on and worked out the power consumption. We supplied a UPS with enough capacity to run this and installed it carefully making sure everything needed was connected.

Soon after we installed it they had a power cut. The UPS kept the desk phones and WiFi powered. The servers shutdown without any data loss. Our customer is happy.

VoIP telephones typically just need the internet to work and are often powered by a central network switch. This makes them easy to power via a UPS. Internet components (routers firewalls etc) and Wifi access points (which can also be powered by a switch) can easily be added to a UPS as well.

Telanova will buy your organisation precious uptime for your communication lines in the event of a power cut.

Interested in maximising uptime?

How much damage could a colleague do accidentally or deliberately?

A criminal offered a Tesla employee a million dollars to run a program on his work computer. Luckily for Tesla, they reported it and Tesla worked with the authorities to catch the baddies. If the employee had run that program, Tesla likely would have been held to ransom, had their intellectual property stolen etc.

This is a high profile case against a huge organisation, but it is a sign of things to come and will trickle down to small and medium businesses.

Businesses need to protect their IT from employees in other, more ordinary circumstances, eg:

  • Deleting everything in their email mailbox before they leave because they honestly believe it’s right thing to do
  • Deleting information if they are sacked or about to be
  • Stealing information from the business before they leave a company
  • Access systems after they have left the company

Small businesses are especially vulnerable as many give all employees access to almost everything. One of the best steps any business can take is to adopt a “Principle of Least Privilege”. Each employee has the minimum access to perform their job and nothing more. A good place to start is:

  • Remove admin rights on devices
  • Remove admin rights on cloud/web services
  • Limit access within line of business applications
  • Structure files/folders and limit access

At telanova, we are experts at making sure employees can access what they need to do their job, while limiting access to everything else. Engage telanova as your IT team and we will secure your systems.

Consider blocking USB sticks in your organisation

What would you, or your most trusting colleague do on finding a USB stick in your car park? Would you try and find the owner? Perhaps plug it in and take a look?

One tactic hackers use against valuable targets such as accountants, lawyers, architects, etc is to “drop” a malicious USB stick in their car park. There is a good chance a well meaning employee will plug it in and poke around to try and identify whose it is. Now the hacker has bypassed multiple layers of security and usually the only one left is the antivirus. If that doesn’t catch what’s on the stick then they’re in!

The hacker will then steal your information, attempt bank transfer fraud, encrypt all your information so you can’t access it and hold you to ransom.

Unrestricted USB sticks carry other risks too:

  • Unencrypted personal data could violate data protection legislation leading to fines, disqualification etc
  • A malicious employee can steal data with no/little trace
  • Booby trapped USB devices such as the USB Killer
  • Employee time wasting

So, what can you do? For most organisations, cloud storage such as OneDrive or Dropbox can simply replace USB sticks and then you can block USB sticks outright. If your organisation has some niche need for them, then Microsoft Intune has fine grained permissions - e.g. allow particular employees/devices/usb sticks, while blocking the rest.

Engage telanova to implement security measures appropriate for your organization.

WiFi or wired connections - How to get the best for your organisation?

WiFi is flexible, you can work from anywhere without a network cable. The downsides are:

  • Dead spots.
  • Interference from other nearby WiFi networks, or microwaves, baby monitors etc
  • The more people use it the harder it is to make it fast enough and reliable

A wired connection is much faster than wifi and more reliable, but you can only work where your cable reaches. It can be expensive and disruptive to install cables everywhere they’re needed.

WiFi is well suited to organisations with open plan offices with laptops and hotdesks who use only small files. Enterprise WiFi solutions typically have multiple WiFi access points and a central WiFi controller. Not only does this make sure the whole office is covered but also spreads the load and improves reliability.

Whereas a graphic design firm with powerful workstations will be transferring large files and would benefit from wired connections.

Getting the best balance between cost and performance can be tricky especially with a mix of different requirements. In a business environment a DIY approach doesn’t make sense: the business will spend time, money and energy on the wrong solutions. Instead, engage telanova as your IT team.

Why would I need a powerful computer?

A common misconception from businesses that only use web applications is that they don’t need powerful computers. It’s not true!

  • Many websites actually run code directly on your computer, some examples are: Salesforce, Google Mail / Docs. A powerful processor will speed these up.
  • The number of web browser tabs you can have open at the same time is affected by the amount of memory you have.
  • Zoom, Teams and other collaboration tools need powerful computers.
  • Startup, Shutdown, and Restart will waste working time if the processor and disk is too slow.

A good starting point is

  • Intel i5 / Ryzen 5 CPU
  • 8GB RAM
  • 256GB SSD

In a business environment, it does not make sense to analyse everyone's requirements and decide on a suitable model yourself, you’ll spend time, money and energy on the wrong solution. Instead, engage telanova as your IT team.

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