‘Twas the fifth of December and all through the company, our holiday lunch and learn filled us with glee. That’s right, at this month’s lunch and learn series, we were practically brimming over with holiday spirit as we peppered our regular tech talk with plenty of seasonal cheer! Alongside a meal of hearty holiday favorites, we doled out a smorgasbord of IT insights on information security and wireless networks. And to make sure everyone could have a good holiday, we collected donations for Toys for Tots and the Good Samaritan Network as well!
First up, we heard from AT&T’s Steve Hoffman about the changing landscape of information security. There’s never been a better time for small business owners to reevaluate their network protection strategy. Malware and hacking techniques are growing more sophisticated and complex every day, which means that your security approach needs to be flexible — and up to date — to counter an ever-moving target. Here’s how it all breaks down.
- Small businesses are at a particularly high risk for the latest security attacks. Attack methods are constantly evolving to outwit new security procedures, which means business owners and IT admins have to continually strive to stay ahead of the latest security threats. In particular, small businesses face an elevated risk of ransomware attacks. And research shows that these kinds of attacks hit SMBs the hardest, since they lack the confidence in their protection methods and the resources to handle the aftermath.
- Keeping up with the newest security measures is a big job for small business IT teams. Meanwhile, SMB IT admins often struggle to keep up with preventative measures, such as installing software updates, making firewall improvements and other protocols that can keep attacks like these at bay. Security innovation moves faster every day — so staying on top of these updates takes a whole lot of vigilance!
- It’s okay to ask for some help. Lastly, Steve led us through his requirements for SMBs — and enterprise-level businesses — that want to stay safe in a landscape of growing security concerns. For instance, all organizations should invest in 24/7 network monitoring and install email gateways that scrub inbound and outbound emails. These measures help to secure your server from virus attacks, keeping your organization running smoothly and fluidly.
Next at the podium was our own systems administrator, Trey Womack, who’s been with us at Taylored since 2011. Trey walked us through some of the basics of networking — and what’s coming down the pipeline for business wireless.
- Your wireless may not be as cutting edge as you think it is. Mainstream wireless typically maxes out at speeds of about 1 gig per second. But new top-tier wireless products are capable of speeds seven times faster than that, with bandwidth to spare. These high-speed wireless connections are particularly useful in boardrooms and living rooms — anywhere where streaming video plays a crucial role.
- Even network design processes are evolving to be more efficient. Wireless network site surveys, a plan that technicians develop pre-installation (and continue to improve throughout the installation phase), help ensure that the design is as efficient and error-free as possible. But there isn’t just one type of survey — active, passive and predictive surveys all make up the lifespan. Predictive surveys, in particular, can help you plan for your network’s future, long before the first access points go in. And that means fewer fixes and updates in the future!
- Updated wireless networks come with new requirements. At the end of his talk, Trey ran us through the requirements for a modern high-speed network. Those include, at a minimum, two Cat 6A cables per access point. Furthermore, businesses that offer free wireless to customers while on site need to make sure to bulk up security practices — after all, a safe visit is the best gift of all!
Mark Your Calendars for March’s Lunch and Learn
Missed the last lunch and learn? Don’t worry! We’ll be back at it in March with new discussions about moving physical security systems onto the cloud and live demos of cloud-based security access control and video solutions.
Moving your access control, 4K and hosted video surveillance solutions off of your servers and into the cloud saves money, time and frustration. Cloud-based security products offer the ability to track keys and manage ownership more efficiently — without the burden of maintaining physical servers. We’ll be looking at the evolution of physical security products as they converge with IP and demonstrating a few of the latest tools during the session. And of course, we’ll top it all off with a hot lunch, drawings for prizes and plenty of great conversion with our staff and fellow attendees!
March 2018 Lunch and Learn: Physical Security Converging With IP
When: Tuesday, March 6, 2017
(11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.)
Where: Taylored Systems
14701 Cumberland Road, Ste. 100
Noblesville, IN 46060
Visit our Lunch and Learn page for more information and to register for the seminar. See you there!