Downtime not only costs your business money but valuable customers too.
We believe a proactive approach is always best when it comes to technology. Therefore, we monitor your network to maintain technologies to Netitude health standards and reduce vulnerabilities.
Before breaking down how we maximise your uptime, let's take a look at the causes and effects of downtime to get the best understanding of what is needed to combat these problems.
What causes business downtime?
There are several causes of downtime. Some of the leading causes are explained below:
Human Error: Whether accidental or due to negligence, human error is one of the most common causes of unplanned downtime. An employee unintentionally deleting data, accidentally unplugging a cable, or not following standard protocols can lead to costly downtime. Human error is unavoidable, but its frequency can be reduced with regular training and a well-documented IT checklist or policies.
Hardware/Software Failure: Outdated hardware or software increases the chances of application failure and system outage. Obsolete hardware and software also result in inefficient performance, significantly impacting productivity. In addition, if patches are applied without proper testing, it can corrupt the entire application.
Device Misconfiguration: Device misconfiguration is another major cause of unplanned downtime. Configuration errors can create security gaps in your network, making it vulnerable to cyberattacks. You can avoid misconfiguration errors by automating the process instead of setting the parameters manually. Before implementing the changes, you should also test the configurations in a trial environment.
Bugs: Bugs in your operating systems can impact its performance and lead to security issues. If you don't apply patches on time or without appropriate testing, it can corrupt applications and lead to server failure.
Cybersecurity Threats: Cyberthreats, including sophisticated phishing and ransomware attacks, are among the most dangerous and common causes of IT downtime and can stop your organisation in its tracks. Malicious actors can easily exploit vulnerabilities in your network, infiltrate systems and gain access to confidential data. However, employee training and security solutions, such as multifactor authentication, spam filters and file encryption, can go a long way towards overcoming cybersecurity challenges.
Natural Disasters: Natural disasters, such as floods, earthquakes and hurricanes, can disrupt power supply and communication or damaged hardware. This can have disastrous consequences on your business if downtime extends for a prolonged period.
Costs and Effects of Downtime
Apart from financial losses, downtime causes other impacts that unprepared businesses must deal with if unprepared. Depending on the frequency and extent of downtime, it can have short- and long-term effects on your business. Listed below are some of the significant consequences of downtime.
Lost productivity: When downtime due to equipment failure or network outage occurs, mission-critical systems become unavailable for use. As such, employees are left twiddling their thumbs for the duration of the downtime.
Lost opportunities: In today's connected world, where businesses rely heavily on application uptime and availability, a moment of downtime can negatively impact your business. Downtime can lead to experiences like your clients not being able to access your products or services. Such instances can quickly drive away clients and prospects.
Damaged reputation: Customers expect a quick, seamless experience every time. A single downtime event can put your organisation's reliability and reputation at risk in such a scenario. Repeated downtime can lead to unhappy customers, quickly translating into bad customer reviews and a tarnished reputation.
Data loss: Downtime affects not only your business but your clients too. Unplanned downtime, such as a server outage, can potentially expose your sensitive data or create security gaps, which cybercriminals can exploit to gain unauthorised access.
How does Netitude minimise downtime?
Downtime is unpredictable and can happen to any business. So how do you prepare for the unexpected? Here's what Netitude do for ourselves and our clients to minimise the risk and impact of downtime.
Regular Audits of your entire IT Estate
We run quarterly audits to align our client’s technology with their business needs and goals.
Our IT audits offer an in-depth analysis of your company's IT policies, operations, and infrastructure. Our security audits also ensure that you are aligned with Cyber Essentials compliance measures to pass the certification criteria.
Monitoring, Alerting and Remediation
Cybercrime doesn't only operate between 9 AM and 5 PM. Having a 24/7/365 Security Operations Centre (SOC) team means that there is always someone on the lookout for any potential or suspect behaviour in your systems. They'll immediately investigate and mitigate the issue before it leads to problems that cause downtime. 24/7/365 SOC are the eyes and ears your business needs to protect its data.
Anti-Virus (AV) and Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR)
Sadly, security measures that were once sufficient can now easily be bypassed by today's hackers. Meaning prevention tools like Anti-Virus no longer cut the mustard. To combat this issue, we pair Antivirus with EDR solutions. AV provides the ability to detect and respond to malware on an infected computer using various techniques. EDR incorporates AV and other endpoint security functionality, providing more fully-featured protection against a wide range of potential threats.
One of the most common ways malware enters a network is through email scams known as Phishing. We implement email protection solutions that filter emails before you receive them. These services specialise in email protection and are updated to catch even the most advanced email compromise attempts.
Human error is one of the leading causes of downtime. However, the frequency of human error can be significantly reduced with frequent employee training.
We run regular stimulated Phishing campaigns to teach your employees to recognise and report phishing attempts, reducing the risk of your business becoming compromised.
We regularly update and install patches for operating systems, hardware and software to ensure the stability and security of your devices. Staying up to date with system upgrades and regular maintenance will help maintain the health of your devices and enhance performance.
Regularly Test Backups
When downtime occurs, your backed up data is your last resort. However, your data won't be helpful if you can't restore the data when you need it the most.
We test your backups regularly to ensure your data recovery works and data lost is measured in minutes rather than days or weeks.
Backup and Disaster Recovery Planning
Your business is only as resilient as your business continuity and disaster recovery strategy. Having a comprehensive BDR plan in place will help you prepare for unforeseen downtime events and enable you to take appropriate action when downtime does occur. As well as regularly testing your backups, we'll design you a BDR plan to get you back on your feet and minimise disruption to your business and clients.
What can you expect from Netitude?
As a Managed Service Provider (MSP), we know we make a juicy target for cybercriminals. This is why we take our own security position seriously. We use all the tools found in our Managed Cyber Security packages to protect our business and yours. As a result, we exceed the criteria needed to pass the Cyber Essentials PLUS certification and have passed our external assessment first time every year.
Is it our social responsibility as an MSP to ensure we practice what we preach and secure our own house. However, not all IT partners do the same, so if you're unsure what your IT supplier does to protect themselves and your business, it's time to ask them about compliance.
If you don't feel your current IT partner has your best interests at heart regarding security, it's time to put your business first and look for a proactive IT support partner.
Netitude's IT support packages include security features, such as those mentioned, needed to help combat today's ever-changing cybersecurity threats. If you'd like to learn more about our services or how we can best serve your business, request a call from one of our experts today!