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We help our clients with 

Managed I.T. Services

We provide both blocktime service and monthly service contracts, so that you pay for what you need, and nothing more.

Computer Repair Service

Computer down? One of our knowledgeable specialists can help you to identify and resolve the problem in a timely fashion.

Network & Email Security

We’ve partnered with the best names in security to ensure that your network, email and business data have the highest level of protection.

Cloud Consulting

Cloud computing offers a lot of benefits for businesses big and small. With Office 365, enhanced security, and the option to work collaboratively from anywhere in the world, the cloud can seriously improve your business’ productivity levels.

Backup & Disaster Recovery

In case of emergency, you want your business to be prepared and secure. Red Five provides multiple disaster recovery and backup services to make sure that your business maintains productivity even in the event of an emergency.

Help Desk Services

As a client of Red Five, you will have access to our help desk support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, via phone, email or our online ticketing system. We provide you with the best help support, for exactly when you need it.

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LATEST RED FIVE I.T. NEWS

Best practices for data safety in a remote work environment

February 26, 2021
Best practices for data safety in a remote work environment Do you have staff working from home? Of late, due to the Coronavirus crisis a lot of businesses shifted to the remote working environment. While it raises some data security concerns, they can be overcome by following a few best practices. Formulate rulesYou can start by formulating rules that define the extent and manner in which personal devices may be used for work purposes. Who are allowed to use personal devices for work? Spell out the regulations that they must follow. For example, regular checks for malware and updates to anti-malware software, etc., If there are restrictions to the device type, software or operating systems that may be used, out of security concerns, then that should be addressed. Focus on the 2 Ts of cybersecurity Train your staff: The first T is training your staff on how to identify IT threats and cybercrime activities that they can be a victim of. Examples include phishing emails, dubious attachments, clone sites, etc., Another area to train your staff is free/public wifi. They need to know that public wifi can be a gateway for hackers and cybercriminals into your system. Accessing emails from the airport’s waiting lounge or the mall’s food court, can expose your business to IT threats. Teach good password hygiene: This is the second T. Help your employees understand how important password strength is. They should be able to identify weak passwords and steer clear of them. Also, they need to know that no matter how urgent the situation seems, password sharing is not acceptable. Similarly, mistakes such as repeating the password for multiple accounts, not changing the passwords frequently, etc., can make a cyber criminal’s job easier. Keeping things under control You can conduct monthly audits of the devices your employees will be using for work purposes. Arrange for regular security patch implementation, firewall installation and software updates. Install quality anti-malware software, firewalls, and make sure email security systems are in place. Even in the remote environment, you can ensure appropriate data access through role and permission-based access control measures. All of this may seem new, and tedious, especially for businesses that are looking to recover from the effects of the on-going pandemic, which is why it is a good idea to team up a managed services provider to help set up a strong, secure, work-from-home environment for your business.

Multi-Factor Authentication 101

February 19, 2021
Multi-Factor Authentication 101 You have probably already come across the term multi-factor authentication. The concept is not new, but has caught on really quick of late. In this post, we will discuss what multi-factor authentication is and why you should be adopting it. What is multi-factor authentication?Multi-factor authentication is basically the use of more than one credential to gain access to data. It is a combination of multiple access credential types. For example, instead of gaining access to an email account by just typing your username and password, you will be asked to further verify your identity by entering some other information, such as a pin or a one-time password (OTP) that was sent to the phone number linked with the email address you are trying to log into. Why do you need multi-factor authentication?Multi-factor authentication offers an additional layer of security. Simple access control measures such as logging in with user ID and password are increasingly being breached by cybercriminals because no matter how much we condition ourselves to follow good password hygiene, sometimes, we slip up. Have you ever been guilty of Writing down your password so you don’t forget it Sharing your password with someone just to get the work done faster Used the same password for multiple accounts just because it is easier to remember Creating a password that was obvious/easy to figure out. Examples include your date of birth, numbers or letters in sequence, your name, etc., Multi-factor authentication can help prevent cybercrimes that happen due to leaked/hacked passwords. How does multi-factor authentication work?The working of multi-factor authentication depends on a combination of the following 3 elements. What you know What you have Who you are The user has to prove their identity by answering the questions related to each of these 3 elements. User IDs, passwords, secret questions, date of birth, etc., fall in the first category (What you know), while OTPs sent to your smartphone, a physical token or an access card belong to the second category (What you have) and the third category (Who you are) includes biometric authentication such as retina scan, fingerprint or voice recognition. Multi-factor authentication is no guarantee of data safety, but it certainly reinforces your data security. While there are tools available in the market that you can purchase and deploy, you could also connect with an MSP to help you implement multi-factor authentication across your network smoothly.

Why MSP relationships fail

February 5, 2021
Why MSP relationships fail A lot of SMBs opt for managed service providers who can help handle their IT requirements, and for the most part, it works well. Almost everyone knows the benefits of having a MSP manage your IT. Increased cost savings, ability to focus on your business without worrying about IT, better IT support and expertise, and so on. But, there are times when the managed IT services model fails, leaving business owners to wonder what went wrong. This blog discusses some key reasons why MSP relationships fail. You didn’t do a reference checkDid you just pick the first MSP you found on the Google search? Did you just go by the presentations they gave you, or the information on their website? Always remember to ask your MSP for references. Talk to someone they work with and get feedback. They don’t have enough staffIf your MSP is short of staff, they won’t be able to give you the attention you need. One of the biggest advantages of bringing an MSP onboard is having someone who proactively manages and monitors your IT requirements– something you cannot do without a full fledged IT department. So, it is important that your MSP is well-staffed. They are not experienced enoughBefore you bring an MSP on board, make sure you pay attention to how long they have been in business. This is important because the whole idea behind hiring an MSP is to leverage their knowledge and expertise. Secondly, someone who has been in the business for quite some time is more likely to be able to scale with you as you grow. They said they will be there, but…You want your MSP to be available 24/7, because with IT, you never know when the problem will arise. Not only should your MSP be proactively monitoring your IT infrastructure to ensure everything runs smoothly, they should also be able to resolve IT problems when they happen–time and day notwithstanding, so that your business is back up and running as soon as possible. They are not able to provide you with all that you needSometimes, as you grow, your IT needs change. You may need much more support and new technologies that you didn’t think you’d need earlier. In such cases, if your MSP is not able to grow and scale with you, then the relationship won’t work. When choosing an MSP, think of the whole process as a partnership, and not a one-time deal. When you look at the relationship as a long-term one, you are more likely to consider all the factors that go into making your relationship with the MSP work in the long run.

Cyber hygiene: The key to your business’s good cyber health

January 29, 2021
Cyber hygiene: The key to your business’s good cyber health We all know that basic hygiene is a must to lead a healthy life. Did you know that the same rule applies to IT as well? There’s something known as cyber hygiene that plays a key role in keeping your business healthy from the IT perspective. So, how do you ensure your business doesn’t fail when it comes to cyber hygiene? Here are a few tips. Follow industry benchmarks and standardsRemember that if an IT practice has gained industry-wide recognition and adoption, it is because it certainly offers some benefits. Protocols like the HTTPS implementation, SSL security certificates, CIS Benchmark, etc., are examples of industry standards that you must follow to maintain good cyber hygiene. Following these standards enhance your cybersecurity quotient and also play a positive role in helping you win your customer’s trust. Stronger IT administrationThe role of an IT administrator is very critical in any organization. IT administration involves exercising control over most of the IT activities with a view to ensure the security of your IT environment is never compromised. Make sure your IT admin rules and policies are clearly formulated and covers everything including- Clear definition of user roles Permission levels for each user role Restrictions regarding download/installation of new software Rules regarding external storage devices IT Audits Conduct regular IT audits to spot vulnerabilities and gaps that may threaten the security of your IT infrastructure. During the IT audits pay special attention to- Outdated software or hardware that is still in use Pending software updates that make an otherwise secure software vulnerable Fix what you can and get rid of what is too outdated to be made safe. Password policy adherenceWhen it comes to cyber hygiene, passwords are the weakest link as often, people compromise on the password policy for convenience’s sake. Here are a few things to look into at the time of your IT audit to ensure your password policy is being adhered to. Check if passwords are strong enough and follow the standards set for secure passwords Discourage password repetition or sharing Ensure multi-factor authentication, where apart from the password, there is at least one more credential, such as a secret question, a one-time password (OTP) sent to the user’s mobile phone, or a physical token or QR code, to verify and approve data access Ensure basic security mechanisms are in placeAs a part of your cyber hygiene check, ensure you have all the basic security mechanisms in place. These include Anti-malware software programs Firewalls Data encryption tools Physical security and access control tools like biometric access Pay attention to what happens with obsolete dataHow do you get rid of data you no longer need? Even though old data may not be of any use to you from the business perspective, a breach of that data can still hurt you legally. Ensure you get rid of old data safely. It is a good practice to deploy data wiping software and also

Free Internet Access? Don’t fall for this one

January 22, 2021
Free Internet Access? Don’t fall for this one One of the popular internet scams that has been doing the rounds since 2017 is the one about “Free Internet”. This scam seems to resurface and somehow manages to claim quite a few unsuspecting victims. Here’s how they catch you. Ads are created on Google, Facebook, popular search engines and social media platforms advertising free internet hours. The ads look professional and show up on general searches and on social media when surfing. This offers a sense of validity. Once you click on the ad, you will be taken to their website, where you will be asked to perform an action, such as Filling out a form with your Personally Identifiable Information (PII) Sharing your credit card information, and though you will be promised that your card won’t be charged, you may end up signing up for something or subscribing to a service for which your card will be charged later. Sharing a few email IDs or phone numbers–basically contacts with whom you will be asked to share the message in return for free internet service. How to stay safe?As always, remember no one offers something for free. Whether it is free internet access or tickets to a concert, if it is something of value, then you will be expected to provide some value in return. Steer clear of offers that seem too good to be true. If you receive a message from someone you know and trust, please let them know that their link may be a problem. No matter what, don’t open a link from anyone if you aren’t entirely sure the links are valid.

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