The Cyber Threat Landscape

Multiple reports have been published recently covering the cyber threat landscape for businesses, including the Verizon 2016 Data Breach Investigations Report and McAfee Labs 2016 Threats Predictions. These reports have unveiled some of the major cyber threats businesses face today, as well as why human error is such a big issue. For example, 63% of confirmed data breaches involve using weak, default, or stolen passwords, and 26% of miscellaneous human errors involve people mistakenly sending sensitive information to the wrong person! As technology advances, the cyber attack surface will only expand and these statistics will become increasingly unacceptable. It’s more important than ever to, at the very least, implement basic defenses and avoid human-based vulnerabilities as much as possible. Let’s look at some of the common threats today:

Phishing

Phishing continues to be an effective tool for attackers, as it can very quickly compromise a business network, and attackers can target specific people or organizations. Phishing is a primary method of infecting victims with malware, working by spreading as a trojan whose payload is disguised as a seemingly legitimate file, often coming to the user from a spoofed email address that looks like a legitimate sender. The email tends to carry a malicious attachment or instruct users to click a link that allows a virus to enter their machine. A huge issue here is the human error because many business users are unable to identify phishing emails. In the past year, 30% of phishing messages were opened by users, and 13% of those went on to click to open a malicious attachment or link!

Ransomware

Ransomware is a growing threat, with attackers wanting fast cash. This effective type of malware restricts access to a user’s PC, applications, or files and demands that the user pay a ransom to the malware operators to remove this restriction – it also works on a business-wide level, impacting an entire network. Crypto ransomware encrypts files on the hard drive and requires payment of the ransom for decryption, while locker ransomware locks the system and displays messages to scare the user into paying. Criminals often attack Microsoft Office, Adobe PDF, and graphics files, which are typically found in business environments. These targets will expand in coming years.

Extortion Hacks

With extortion hacks, attackers threaten to release sensitive company or customer information if the victim doesn’t pay. Even with backed up data, this presents a threat to a company whose reputation and customers are suddenly at risk. Common examples of extortion hacks include the Sony, Ashley Madison, and InvestBank hacks. This method works because it creates fear. Organizations fear the exposure of private information, which could lead to angry customers and lawsuits, and even executives losing jobs.

What can you do?

These reports have made it clear that no system is impenetrable, and difficult-to-detect attacks are growing more common. However, even the most basic defenses deter cybercriminals, who will often look for an easier target. But you don’t have to stick to the basic defenses – in fact, we suggest you move beyond those. There are many tools businesses can use to better prevent, detect and respond to attacks. Reports like these have allowed us to find patterns and better understand how cybercriminals operate. The Verizon report offered some useful tips for protecting a business against these growing cyber threats:

  • Research and familiarize yourself with the common attack patterns in your industry
  • Use two-factor authentication for your business systems and applications
  • Monitor all inputs
  • Patch promptly
  • Encrypt business data in flight and at rest
  • Train staff on the threats and steps they can take
  • Know what data you have, and protect it accordingly
  • Limit who has access to what – not everyone needs access to everything

How HTG Can Help

Backup

Many security experts have designated crypto ransomware as the greatest security threat to organizations today. HTG’s Cloud Backup solution can protect against this and is a reliable way to recover files following an attack. The solution provides organizations with a seamless and secure backup of their data to HTG’s cloud. HTG takes care of all the management, monitoring and dependability of the customer’s backed up the environment. Cloud Backup is secure, encrypted, scalable and efficient.

Recovery

Any business continuity plan should have the file-level backup, but another key component is disaster recovery. Cloud Recovery is designed for large-scale failures and true disasters, rather than single-item restore – depending on the extent of the situation, this solution may be necessary. Together, Cloud Recovery and Cloud Backup can create a well-rounded business continuity plan for a cyber attack.

Cloud Security

HTG delivers nothing but the highest quality protection for customer data and information. We have equipped ourselves with government-grade facilities to hold sensitive information for safe, encrypted storage in SAS70, SSAE 16 Tier 3, Class 1 data centers. Every one of these data centers features on-premises security guards, keycard protocols, biometric scanning protocols and round-the-clock interior and exterior surveillance monitor access. The facilities are engineered to the highest of standards in order to ensure customers’ businesses are running 24x7x365.

 

Previously posted on HTG Blog:

 

Chris Ichelson

HTG – HTG 360

Direct: +1-866-278-5578

Cloud Computing: The Change, The Impact

Cloud computing is changing the way we live and do business. It is quickly being seen as a key to business success. It has impacted the way businesses are run and supplied. Benefits from cost efficiency to security are prevalent with cloud computing, but what about the impact and change it has on day-to-day life?

Social

Social media has impacted how people interact in today’s world. Without knowing it, people use cloud-based communication methods on a day-by-day, hour-by-hour base. Via the Internet, people can easily communicate, check their emails, tell the world about their day, stream videos/movies, and more. The social impact of cloud computing opens up long-distance relationships by enabling simple communication between friends, family, coworkers, partners and others who may live on the opposite side of the world. Reaching people is just easier and faster. Global platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more have helped news travel faster, and businesses can take advantage of these by acting in real time with their audience.

Online Storage

Cloud computing has influenced the way people store their valuable data, photos, music, and much more. Common online software resources like ShareFile, Flickr, and many more make that possible. Instead of relying on a personal flash drive that can go missing at any moment, cloud storage is accessible at any time as long as you have the Internet.

Education

Registering for classes online? Emailing a professor? Taking digital notes? Accessing homework or a syllabus through a Web portal? Anyone doing these activities is an active cloud user. Cloud computing has enabled educational institutions to prosper through the adoption of trends like BYOD. It has impacted the way students take their notes, enroll in classes, and participate in group activities by accessing data anywhere, anytime. Teachers use cloud computing in their role as well, with the ability to upload resources to be accessible to students, track grades and activities online, and access email and data from anywhere.

Health

Healthcare organizations use cloud-based methods as well. Cloud offers the ability to keep patients’ documents in a secure, organized, virtual space, rather than in piles of paperwork that get cluttered and easily lost. Cloud computing has impacted the way patients create appointments by eliminating excessive time and paperwork. Scheduling appointments, making referrals, or completing patient history are all made easier through the cloud. Doctors use cloud computing solutions to manage their patients’ data and securely share it with patients or other medical professionals to check status and follow-ups.

The cloud is extremely prevalent, even for those that haven’t realized it. Cloud computing is part of how we live our daily lives and is key to our daily routines. If it’s that ingrained already, imagine the impact it can have if strategically implemented in your organization. Learn more about our Cloud Services page!

 

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Moving Healthcare Into The Cloud

Many industries today are becoming more aware of the benefits that the cloud computing world provides. Cloud computing has become an important source of both reliability and a competitive advantage. It is an especially great option for an industry like healthcare.

83% of IT executives in healthcare organizations report they are using cloud services today.Healthcare organizations are known for storing massive amounts of data, and storing such critical data can be a lot easier with a cloud solution in place. It can provide a simpler way to collect and coordinate the medical data and workflow that is necessary, and facilitate safe storage and transfer of information between medical professionals and their patients.

A report conducted by Markets and Markets has predicted that the healthcare cloud computing market will produce $9.48 billion by 2020.

Moving Healthcare into the Cloud

According to a report conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit, 61% say cloud computing will be a decisive factor five years from now. More than half of organizations will be making the transition to the cloud, thus making it crucial for healthcare providers to have a strong understanding of what it can provide.

There is a new era evolving within the healthcare industry that involves the adoption of electronic healthcare records (EHR), which replace all the clutter that comes with using traditional methods of storage and documentation. Supporting EHR, the cloud helps unburden hospital IT departments. The ability to analyze and track information in the cloud helps improve treatments, boost performance, reduce costs, discover trends and more. The cloud serves as a new solution for the healthcare industry to help manage data and streamline processes.

Another positive impact of the cloud is the ability to create more efficient healthcare services and improve the doctor-patient relationship. Information that is geared towards a patient’s diagnosis and treatments can be made securely available from the touch of a button on any device, like a phone, tablet, computer, etc. 53% of healthcare employees use three or more devices for work already. Doctors can stay connected and collaborate accordingly with their colleagues and patients easily, freeing up their time to focus more on providing quality health care than on filling out paperwork or transferring files. Daily tasks like setting appointments, making referrals, or completing patient history can be completed anywhere at any time in the cloud.

Moving forward, cloud solutions offer the healthcare industry the tranquility of easily managing all critical data in real time. Cloud computing offers infrastructures that allow the healthcare industry to expand computing resources at a low cost while bringing down the barriers to innovation and modernization.

Privacy and Security

In the healthcare industry, security is of the utmost importance and at times can cause healthcare providers to take a huge step back when considering the cloud. However, with the right cloud provider, security shouldn’t be a cloud barrier. Solutions like ours include:

  1.  Client-side encryption of data
  2. Multi-factor authentication
  3. Data loss prevention tools
  4. Full credential limited access to data centers
  5. Biometric scanning systems
  6. Exterior security systems
  7. Around-the-clock interior and exterior surveillance monitor access
  8. Redundant HVAC systems

Legislation 

Guidelines are a given when dealing with protected health information. The Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is a U.S. law that healthcare organizations must abide by. It protects patient privacy by mandating and enforcing strict privacy and security rules on how medical information is being collected, used, and disclosed. Cloud solutions can help make it easier to meet HIPAA requirements, especially when you work off of HIPAA-compliant infrastructure like ours.

Cloud computing offers numerous significant benefits to the healthcare industry, providing a great opportunity to improve and grow services for patients and employees while adding great operational efficiency. Head to our Industries page to learn more about how the cloud can impact healthcare and other major industries!

Interested in a Cloud Computing Review?  Click Here.

How Can Cloud Increase Business Value?

Cloud computing is a resource that meets the needs of companies with growing employee bases and departments. It can be used as an exceptional technological tool to measure company value if the company takes advantage of the value provided. With the ups and downs of the world’s economy, affordable and reliable technology is more and more necessary. Cloud computing fills that void.

If used strategically, cloud computing can provide true business value. Let’s review how:

Fuel Top-line Growth

Value can be seen through the increase of business agility, reach, and scalability. Agility can be difficult to quantify, but it is a real win when it comes to cloud computing. It can facilitate exactly what your business wants/needs – how much CPU, what type of application configuration is required, and how you want to distribute these. Cloud computing also drives business growth and value by helping businesses develop rapidly, transition into a new market, integrate applications, and much more. Agility provides great value to those that are competing in an environment of uncertain high-growth markets. Increased innovation creates great value for businesses alongside improved communication and collaboration. According to IBM, leading companies are 73% more likely to rapidly innovate products and services via the cloud. Having agility can improve business services at an increasing speed, reducing delivery time from months to just weeks.

  1. Enable innovation of new services
  2. Differentiate with new technologies
  3. Enhance business resiliency by improving data center/application uptime

Improve Bottom-Line Economics

With cloud computing you pay only for what you consume, when you need to consume it – that’s the pay-as-you-go model. By reducing total cost with cloud solutions, resources can be utilized more efficiently. Cloud solutions replace on-premises applications, which increases your reach and scalability and increases value. By eliminating expensive maintenance issues, which would normally cost the IT department time and money, the cloud offers great efficiency and true value to a company.

  1. Improve resource lifecycle management
  2. Eliminate constant, expensive upgrades
  3. Pay as you go
  4. Experience TCO reductions greater than 50%

Bring Forth Collaboration

Cloud computing also provides the ability to reach your customers at any time. A reliable solution transfers all data securely into the cloud and can be accessed by any authorized client, partner, or employee. Barriers between once-separate departments are broken down, which allows for sharing of expertise and business information. This level of collaboration effectively leads to a dynamic workforce.

With a strategic, focused approach to cloud computing, it can power transformation within the digital and business worlds, and increase business value.  

Discuss driving revenue with use of cloud technologies with HTG by clicking here.  

Contact HTG

866-278-5578

info@htg360.com

A Sustainable World With Cloud Computing

Sustainability and cloud computing are coherently trending together!

Cloud computing is advancing our economy forward in many ways, including its inherent sustainability. The cloud’s “green” quality comes from moving hardware and software into a virtual environment. So instead of relying on local servers, the work is transferred through the Internet to store, manage, and process the data. Research conducted by Google shared that businesses can save more than 65% on energy costs by moving to the cloud!

Sustainability continues to be an added benefit of cloud computing for companies and their IT departments. Businesses of all sizes are becoming more aware of their carbon footprint and are putting in place long-term strategies to reduce it. With more sustainable services, like cloud-based solutions, they can. Research conducted by Global E-sustainability Initiative states that if 80% of world enterprise adopted cloud computing and powered down local servers, we would see around a 4.5 megaton reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

Energy and resource efficiencies come more naturally from cloud infrastructures. With the cloud, businesses can save energy by reducing the number of physical resources they rely on, which can ultimately save energy, money, time, and waste.

Having the ability to reduce hardware helps companies also reduce costs and remove any sort of maintenance and management they were previously dealing with. Carbon Disclosure Project found that cloud computing can help companies realize $12.3 billion in energy savings. Placing critical data in a secure, remote location rather than in-house offers the ability to reduce computing management time and expenses with greater flexibility and effective energy savings. According to Pike Research, due to the continued adoption of cloud computing, data center energy consumption will decrease by 31% from 2010 to 2020.

Another benefit that comes from adopting this sustainable solution is the additional benefits that cloud can offer, like the ability to interact and collaborate easily through mobile devices, allowing a tremendous increase in productivity. Studies by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Northwestern University have found that if 86 million U.S. workers were moved to the cloud, they could save enough electricity annually to power a great city like Los Angles for a year! Allowing employees to work productively in the cloud, with tools like file sharing, word processing, and CRM software, can cut down IT energy consumption significantly.

Although sustainability might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of cloud computing, it’s a valuable side effect. Taking a closer look at the technology will expose many of its eco-friendly benefits, like reducing your carbon footprint, energy usage, spending, time, and waste. This is all a result of moving to a virtual platform, shared resources, efficient equipment, digital operations and a pay-as-you-go model. If you want to boost your sustainability initiative, cloud computing is the perfect step.

HTG 360 (HTG) – Click here for more info!

The Role of IT in the Cloud

Cloud computing continues to grow. The power it holds is creating new opportunities for businesses of all sizes to innovate and transform. Cloud computing not only redefines a company, but it is also redefining what IT can bring to the table. In this day and age companies are seeking out a more strategic and influential IT professional who operates with speed and efficiency in a proactive matter. According to Cisco, the cloud will represent nearly 30% of all IT spending by 2020.

IT leaders are looking to cloud computing in order to pivot the way business processes and outcomes are delivered. It’s no longer in your best interests to simply look to IT to manage and troubleshoot technology. Instead, increase productivity by shifting IT’s focus to advancing revenue and innovation through technology like the cloud. Transforming IT from reactive to proactive has greater value not only for the IT department but for a business overall.

The cost efficiency that comes with cloud computing is changing the IT department into a profit center, rather than a cost center. The need to purchase new hardware and software, and deal with installation and maintenance is no longer a requirement, nor is waiting around for trouble tickets to be resolved. IT personnel can grow into leaders and strategists instead of repairmen. They have the opportunity to achieve this by strategically analyzing business requirements, recommending new services and investments, managing overall policies, and more.

IT departments can focus on establishing flexible infrastructures as well as endorsing the partners and services, that are needed to guide a business to success. IT professionals become the leading advisers on how to effectively integrate new technology that leads to innovative and positive change.

Cloud computing is changing the IT role, but it’s not threatening it. Cloud computing demonstrates the value and demand for IT to be shifted to a more strategic role. It helps redefine the effectiveness of IT and better connect the department with its business counterparts. Through cloud computing, IT can achieve:

  • Cost efficiency
  • Increased revenue
  • The transition from reactive to proactive
  • Productivity
  • A strategic role
  • Improved customer experience

Modern IT professionals are guiding business transformation that is now a requirement for an organization to remain competitive. The role isn’t phasing out. Rather, it’s gaining great importance.

Would you like to learn more about HTG Cloud and IT Services? Click Here…

Enterprise For The Cloud

The power of the cloud is undeniable for business and technology leaders in the enterprise world. According to Forbes, 69% of enterprises are relying on cloud computing to launch business models. Enterprises can utilize the cloud for a competitive advantage with the opportunity to save money, innovate, experience speed and agility, and boost collaboration with business partners.

The cloud helps modernize and provides platforms that allow enterprises to better manage their critical data. The cloud continues to change the face of IT and a copious amount of enterprises are predicted to make a heavy cloud investment in coming years, as they are already taking the first steps.

The days of IT being so expensive are quickly fading out with the emergence of cloud computing. As the cloud matures, enterprises continue to see the opportunities to achieve cost savings. The traditional approach to infrastructure and software can get extremely expensive with all the updates, maintenance, hardware and more. Constantly having to toss out or repair hardware and software can be problematic and creates a setting of overly-complex enterprise-level infrastructures. This can be costly and difficult to manage from an engineering and financial standpoint.

Cloud computing can solve these complex problems in many ways – it leverages the “as a service” model for things like infrastructure and software, and has the ability to scale to the capacity that is needed at any given time.

Cloud computing’s costs are stable and predictable, giving great value to enterprise-level businesses. Rethinking the value to the end users of your business is also a great benefit achieved with cloud computing solutions. These solutions give enterprises the ability to be on their toes and view every angle of the business.

Enterprises are demanded to innovate as the market grows, but failure to move at the same pace as the cloud market can be catastrophic – will your enterprise stay in the past or will it innovate?

Would you like to have a cloud review for your enterprise?  If so, CLICK HERE!

Chris Ichelson

Certified Engineer

HTG 360

866-278-5578

 

Business Innovation in the Cloud

Cloud computing is widely recognized as a game changer in the technology world, and executives have changed how they approach technology because of it. The cloud delivers rapid ways to engage with customers and the pace of doing business becomes drastically faster.

Having access to vast amounts of storage and computing power on demand drives innovation for businesses of all sizes. According to a survey conducted by IBM Institute for Business Value, 16% percent of businesses are using the cloud as a tool to innovate.

A virtual platform enables businesses to rapidly develop and distribute, and ultimately experiment and innovate more. It creates a foundation of flexibility that taps into next-generation systems to operate email, social networking or collaboration with employees, partners, and customers. Innovation begins when production is a creative use of critical data that companies collect internally and externally.

The cloud enables business models to transform quickly by introducing opportunities like Bring Your Own Device to the playing field. There’s a vast opportunity to connect anywhere at any time with any device. BYOD allows businesses to save money by giving employees the opportunity to use their own device to complete work regardless of their location. Mobile is a major opportunity for innovation, and it influences the connection between both customers and employees.

Another way that clouds computing encourages business innovation is that it offers a platform of tech experimentation that releases corporate IT budgets from being tied up in maintenance. Instead, they can be turned to more of the production aspects of a business. Businesses can save money and time, all at once.

The cloud tends to be initially adopted for efficiency and cost-saving purposes, but it also lays a foundation for innovative serendipity. It enables connections in order for businesses to collaborate and share knowledge. The cloud has emerged as a powerful source of innovation and can be used for much more.

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Top 4 Myths of Cloud Computing

Cloud computing can be prone to some misconstrued perceptions due to confusion and hype that often comes with it. Although cloud computing is growing rapidly, with IDC predicting cloud IT infrastructure spending will reach $53.1 billion by 2019, these cloud myths can dangerously hinder a business from real innovation and outcomes.

Let’s review the top four myths that revolve around the cloud and see if you’re dangerously living under those misconstrued perceptions!

Myth 1: Cloud is Less Secure Than In-House Infrastructures

The biggest apprehension when it comes to the cloud is security. Its ability to store important and sensitive information in a safe and secure environment is the main concern for business leaders, and rightfully so. This misconception about a lack of security comes from the misconception that the cloud is a place that everyone has access to, leading to stolen or changed data. This is inaccurate. Traditional infrastructures hold data in a vulnerable location that can be physically breached, or harmed by natural disasters. Cloud environments, on the other hand, hold data in a virtual space where it cannot be harmed, with multiple safeguards in place to prevent any outside access.

It’s all about security management. That is where an excellent cloud provider comes in. HTG offers the highest quality protection when it comes to client data and information. A customer’s information is secured to multiple layers of both physical and network security. Our cloud solutions are powered out of fully redundant Tier 3 Class 1 data centers that have multiple physical security measures in place. Only authorized data center personnel are granted access to the data center facilities, who must have prior clearance and an escort.

This quote explains it perfectly: “Cloud providers are often more secure because they dedicate themselves to security in ways many firms don’t, since a loss of security credibility would be death for a cloud provider.”

Myth 2: The Cloud Is Costly

When considering any kind of technology installment or environment change, money is a huge component that a business considers. Many think that moving to a virtual environment will mean massive costs. While costs will depend largely on the exact solution a business chooses, cloud, in general, shifts a lot of capital expenditure to operational expenditure, which often reduces costs and makes them more predictable.

On-site, physical infrastructure is actually the culprit that’s eating away at your budget. Not only is it a massive upfront investment, but it needs to be regularly upgraded, refreshed, maintained and fixed. This means spending on hardware, upgrades, replacements, space, energy, and more. It’s a waste of both money and valuable time.

In contrast, cloud computing is scalable, allowing expenses to adjust with resource needs. A business has the ability to consume and pay as their demand for services goes up or down. Our cloud solutions offer a pay-as-you-go plan, leading to a create deal of cost agility. Additionally, you’re no longer the one making the huge technological investments. The provider takes care of that, both paying for and managing the infrastructure and all that comes with it.

If that doesn’t have you convinced, then perhaps this stat will: 88% of cloud users point to cost savings as a cloud benefit.

Myth 3: The Cloud Is Too Confusing

According to a recent survey conducted by Wakefield Research, 1 in 5 Americans confessed that they’ve pretended to know what the cloud is and how it works. Most people, not knowing to relate the cloud to IT and business, related it to the weather. Confusion can impede a business from moving forward, so let’s clear this up:

Cloud computing is a technology that uses a network of remote servers to store, manage, and process data, rather than the traditional local servers you might have on-site today. It functions through the Internet. All of the data that businesses store in their own in-house servers transfers instead to a cloud provider’s infrastructure, which is secure and constantly taken care of by that cloud provider’s team – therefore releasing a business from wasting energy, resources, time, money, and personnel on tasks that are unnecessary for it to do itself.

If we do relate this back to the weather to better understand it, than think of the “cloud” as a metaphor for “Internet” – that’s how businesses and users access these resources.

Cloud computing provides businesses with growth opportunities, high performance, quality, affordable prices, easy collaboration, and simple data access.

Myth 4: My IT Team Disappears

Another very false but important myth to underline is the fear that IT is removed. While businesses could use the cloud as an opportunity to shrink staff, that’s not actually necessary with the cloud move. Instead, the cloud takes care of the basic IT tasks that tie up your employees’ time. It frees up their time, so IT personnel can instead innovate and focus on things that are more prudent and strategic for the business.

The cloud allows businesses to eliminate the need to continually update its own technology infrastructures and software. This relates back to cutting down cost. Cloud minimizes IT costs. It doesn’t have to eliminate your IT team but instead allows IT to focus on their more business-enhancing tasks instead of worrying about traditional, old ways of updating, managing and fixing your infrastructure.

The benefits of cloud computing are undeniable, and we hope we busted a few common cloud myths for you. Cloud is common in the business world today. It’s no longer brand new, and it’s certainly not a fad. Don’t let the myths get in the way of finding a suitable cloud solution for your organization. Chances are it can address the majority of your business problems. Want to learn more about the benefits of cloud services? Visit our Managed Cloud Services page!

Financial Benefits of Cloud Computing

Cloud solutions inherently provide countless benefits for businesses. They allow your company to focus on the most important objective: increasing profit.

Finding ways to cut down on costs is something all businesses look for. Well, look no further. Cloud computing offers numerous financial benefits to your business. It provides major savings, better IT services and higher levels of reliability and productivity. Cloud users are pointing to cost savings as a major cloud benefit, and most agree that cloud services have also helped them boost profits. Additionally, many organizations are reinvesting their savings back into the business to continue improving.

Here are some of the financial benefits of cloud computing:

Greater Cost Agility

Cloud computing scalability allows expenses to adjust as needed. If your demand for services goes up or down, so will your cloud costs. RapidScale’s cloud solutions allow you to pay as you go according to your business needs – that’s the cloud model. It offers you the opportunity to scale up or down in your time frame, based on your needs. Traditionally, organizations often overspend or underspend because they’re forced to predict their needs ahead of time. The cloud’s cost agility fixes this problem. Better yet, as you implement cloud, your employees are no longer chained to their desks. Their business information or applications can be accessed virtually on their own device! This can cut down the cost of businesses providing hardware for employees.

Amplified Productivity with Reduction of IT Management

Stop investing so much in IT management. When your IT team has to constantly maintain on-site servers, it wastes valuable time, focus, and yes, money! Productivity can be improved in the cloud environment, and this ultimately leads to profitability. The cloud frees up your IT team to focus on strategic business tasks and lowers maintenance costs for your business. Since the cloud resources are accessed virtually, a business receives management and maintenance benefits automatically because that’s all taken care of by RapidScale. More than half of businesses that have moved to the cloud said that it reduced the need of their IT team to maintain infrastructure, and this has given them more time to work on strategic tasks and innovation.

Decreased Hardware Costs

On-site hardware is in constant need of maintenance, replacement, and updates. With physical hardware also comes power, cooling and space costs. By moving to the cloud, you replace your on-site hardware with virtual cloud resources, which eliminates a lot of spending and time on your end and gives you access to the latest technology – not to mention that you also lower chances of being affected by disasters or failures that could affect your location. Infrastructure cost reduction is one of the top five benefits of cloud adoption for nearly 75% of IT professionals.

Operational Expenditure

Eliminating hardware and moving into the cloud lowers the need to administer, maintain and upgrade traditional technology, which moves you away from a capital expenditure model into an operational expenditure one. As we described above, the cloud uses a pay-as-you-go model, which is similar to how you’d pay for your water or electricity – your monthly costs are based on your needs. Moving to OpEx gives you the opportunity to free up cash that can be concentrated in other parts of your business.

Benefit from cloud computing by lowering costs, scaling as needed, and producing higher levels of productivity and profitability. Cloud computing is a proven innovative tool that saves businesses money today. 88% of cloud users point to cost savings as a cloud benefit, and with the right cloud solution, you can be among them too!

The First Steps into the Cloud

The cloud computing world is increasingly familiar and important for small, medium, and large businesses. Just this year alone, the market has grown by approximately 16.5%. Cloud is a competitive advantage, as well as a secure solution. It offers many core services such as Infrastructure as a Service and Desktop as a Service, but today let’s focus on how to ease into the cloud.

Two basic but important things to have within a business are effective communication and security of data.

These two can be easily accomplished with Hosted Microsoft Exchange and Disaster Recovery as Service solutions, which are both great first steps into the cloud.

Hosted Microsoft Exchange

An easy first step into the cloud is RapidScale’s sophisticated CloudMail, or its Hosted Microsoft Exchange solution. Most organizations require business email, and moving this function to the cloud is simple and more efficient than traditional methods. CloudMail provides office workers efficient access to email, calendars, contacts, and tasks. They can be accessed on any device: laptops, desktops, smartphones, tablets and more. Communication is a key to success for employees and customers, and CloudMail provides the ability for real-time decision making, and constant communication and collaboration between a business and its employees or external contacts.

CloudMail enhances business-class email, and it also securely transmits sensitive data. It’s an easy-to-use solution that enhances productivity. Enrich your business with CloudMail at a lower cost than in-house Exchange, which only consumes your budget and IT team’s time.

With RapidScale’s cloud solutions you pay as you go according to your business’ needs, allowing you to scale up or down on your own schedule.

CloudMail doesn’t require a big initial commitment to the cloud, but it does offer many benefits:

100% uptime Service Level Agreement
U.S.-based support
Anti-spam and anti-virus protection
Unlimited Active Sync licenses
End-to-end administration
Cost efficiency
Scalability
24×7 backup
Disaster Recovery as a Service

Don’t want to risk losing your data, ever? RapidScale’s Disaster Recovery as a Service solution, CloudRecovery, gives businesses the ability to quickly and easily recover from a disaster or emergency situation. It’s more than just a backup – it allows businesses to implement disaster recovery in the cloud to keep primary production servers, storage, and applications in secure and redundant infrastructures that can be up and running in no time following a disaster. Statistically, businesses without a disaster recovery plan in place that experience a data disaster are more likely to go out of business than those with a plan – so which situation would you rather be in if disaster strikes?

CloudRecovery ensures an easy way to recover and protect your business’ data from any site failures. RapidScale protects your critical data off-site in Tier 3, Class 1 data centers that keep your information safe and sound, no matter what the situation is. CloudRecovery maintains and secures your data for you, while you focus on running your business.

With your business data protected off-site, virtually, you can access any of your information via the cloud, or the Internet, creating a fast and secure way to keep track of your critical data. You no longer have to take on the responsibility of making sure nothing happens to your data – this management and monitoring are handled by professional cloud and disaster recovery experts, RapidScale’s cloud engineers.

Benefits of Disaster Recovery:

100% uptime, Fully replaces traditional disaster solutions, Remote protection, Scalability, Cost efficiency
Anywhere, anytime secure access to data and Reliability.

Staying connected and making sure your company’s critical data is covered are important considerations for any business – and it just happens that those important parts of keeping a business running can be easily managed in the cloud. Reap the benefits of freed up time, money savings, and boosted security that CloudMail and CloudRecovery give you. Once you take your first cloud step and realize how your business can benefit from this modern technology, you can look ahead and consider your next moves!

93% of businesses move to the cloud to increase productivity outside of the office, as well as improve security, efficiency, and scalability.

Many industries today are joining the innovative cloud computing world. 93% of businesses move to the cloud to increase productivity outside of the office, as well as improve security, efficiency, and scalability. Cloud computing is important to gain reliability and a competitive advantage. Here are ten industries that can benefit from the cloud:

1. Hospitality

The global hotel industry produces approximately 400 to 500 billion dollars each year. Distinguishing yourself with high guest satisfaction is extremely important for organizations in this industry. Connecting quickly and easily with guests is something that can be achieved with cloud solutions. When a hotel implements BYOD solutions, guests can sign up for appointments or order room service at the touch of a button. And the cloud makes it easier on the business side to. Many hospitality organizations have already moved to the cloud because they realized it can improve their spending and overall internal efficiency, while boosting the guest experience.

2. Healthcare

61% say that cloud computing will be a major player in the healthcare industry in the next five years. One of the greatest benefits that cloud computing offers the healthcare industry is the delivery of efficient health services and improved doctor-patient relationships. With the cloud, information regarding patients’ diagnoses and treatments can be made available, securely, from the touch of a button on their phone, tablet, computer, etc. Cloud also creates a one-on-one connection between the doctor and patient. Doctors can stay connected and communicate with their patients easily. Cloud computing also frees up time for doctors, allowing them to focus more on their patients, rather than spending excessive time on paperwork. Tasks like scheduling appointments, making referrals, or completing patient history can be completed anywhere at any time with greater efficiency.

3. Automotive

Making sales is huge for the automotive industry, and having constant availability of data is big part of producing sales. Cloud computing migrates data to the Internet using remote servers, giving automotive businesses the ability to access inventory or other necessary data easily. Employees will have the information they need at any given time, even if they’re on the floor with a customer. Sale reps will be prepared constantly, generating sales successfully. With this competitive advantage, it’s easy to direct customers to their perfect car. Instant access of information closes deals faster, and the cloud makes this possible.

4. Real Estate

Communication is key in the real estate industry, and cloud computing can be a lifesaver for real estate agents. These professionals are constantly out in the field with customers, and they need easy access to information to share with clients on the spot! Accessing business files, customer information, or listings is quick and easy in the cloud. Agents can remain focused on sharing the best information with clients and closing deals. Agents can maintain access to customer and prospect information, new listings, and efficient marketing platforms. Everything is centralized in the cloud.

5. Financial and Banking Services

Cloud computing offers the financial and banking services industry the agility to innovate and scale rapidly. And an industry with so much important data can’t afford to lose access to it. With access to virtual infrastructure through the cloud, the financial sector can maintain privacy and security of customer and business information, while also accessing efficient, modern computing solutions. Our cloud solutions come with 24x7x365 support and monitoring, and multiple layers of security and disaster recovery services. This allows the financial world to focus on the customers.

6. Education

The technology world is constantly advancing, creating new, innovative ways for students to learn. It’s important for students to keep up with technology and the education industry is starting to include this more and more today. 43% of higher education institutions have already implemented or are maintaining cloud computing. With the cloud, communication will evolve between staff, students and parents, and all parties will develop greater knowledge on today’s modern technology solutions and maintain quick and easy access to the information they need at all times. With cloud solutions, students can access their assignments and resources from any of their Internet-connected devices, and teachers can assign and upload materials to one central location. It’s that easy!

7. Legal

Implementing cloud solutions in the legal industry allows law firms to store client data, financial records, legal documents and more in a central, virtual location, securely. When you look deeper, cloud computing services are actually proving to be more secure than traditional on-site infrastructure. Since the legal industry holds a lot of sensitive data, secure accessibility is key. Thanks to cloud solutions, you can achieve this today! Through secure client portals, authorized users can access necessary data from any location, at any time, using any Internet-capable device. Our cloud solutions include advanced backup and recovery services, and multiple layers of enterprise-grade security. This makes the cloud accessible for any legal firm.

8. Manufacturing

Manufacturing depends heavily on suppliers, distributors, and customer interactions. Accuracy, speed and knowledge are all key in this sector. Cloud-based systems allow manufacturers to focus more on efficiency and the creation of new products. They often face the challenge of handling multiple locations and supply chains, and all of the communication that goes on between them. Cloud computing generates real-time data, places it in a central location, and allows all team members to collaborate, communicate and share information easily, from afar. Cloud syncs files in the central location so users can access them on any device, no matter where in the world they are. Cloud computing creates a big competitive advantage for manufacturers, as they can experience increased efficiency throughout all operations and improved communication.

9. Nonprofit

It is crucial for nonprofits to stay connected and innovative using technology. They face a demand for transparency, either in competition for funding or accountability for organizational outcomes. However, nonprofits also rely heavily on low budgets and this has traditionally been a barrier when it comes to investing in new tech. With our cloud solutions, we can eliminate this barrier. The cloud offers nonprofits mobility, accessibility, efficiency and productivity for prices they can afford. Collaboration can occur 24×7 via the Internet, allowing for real-time management, insight, and action.

10. Insurance

In the insurance industry, cloud computing can reduce the total cost of IT operations, engage customers more effectively, and handle peaks in demand with unlimited scalability. The cloud offers the opportunity for real-time communication between a business and its employees and customers, and allows customers to have constant access to their accounts and information. It allows insurers to better address the demands of consumers, achieve faster speed to market with new products or services, and achieve efficiency overall.

Want to learn more about how cloud computing is impacting business across all industries? Visit our Industries page!

Vulnerability and Penetration Testing (VMaaS) Announced by HTG 360 Helps Client’s Proactively Identify Security Risks.

HTG 360 ( www.htg360.com ), a Phoenix-based company, announces that Vulnerability Scanning and Penetration Testing (VMaaS) is now being offered to businesses for as low as $300.00 per month. HTG 360 found that businesses are seeking a cost-effective way to eliminate security breaches and data leaks. Vulnerability Scanning and Penetration Testing is the first step for an organization to start the process of mitigating risk, protecting company assets and showing the community that they are doing business with a proactive security plan.

HTG 360’s Vulnerability Scanning and Penetration Testing will show client’s where currently security measures are lacking, where malicious activity could be present and what steps can be taken to prevent data breaches. HTG 360’s Security Team will provide monthly reporting that will describe what security issues are new to the network and what security changes are overdue.

Chris Ichelson, CEO of HTG 360 stated the following, “As an organization, we are very excited to offer our clients a solution that will help identify areas within their network that are most vulnerable to attack. Consumer’s need to be confident when doing business with organizations and HTG Security (www.htgsecurity.com) has provided the next step in showing our clients how to have a proactive security posture. I am very excited for this announcement as this helps provide a well-rounded security approach.”

About HTG 360:

We are committed to working with our clients to be the only All-In-One technology firm offering a complete portfolio of Security, Network, and Cloud Products and Services. HTG 360 can deliver multi-level technology solutions for any client worldwide. Would you like to learn more about HTG and also discuss your security and data protection plans for 2015-2016? Contact us now at www.htg360.com.

Services Provided:

Network Security, Firewall/UTM/NGFW, IDS/IPS, Email and Web Security, DDoS Mitigation, DNS/DHCP/IPAM (DDI), Advanced Malware Detection, Secure Wireless, Secure Networking, Network Change Management, Remote Access, Network Access Control, System Security, Anti-Malware, Vulnerability Management, Change Management, Systems Access Management, Host IPS (HIPS), Secure Platforms, Secure Interfaces, Secure Storage, Endpoint Security, Endpoint Suite, Host IPS (HIPS), Advanced Malware Detection, Patching and Configuration, Disk Encryption, Application and Device Control, MDM/MAM, Endpoint Virtualization, Application Security, Web Application Firewall, Web Application Testing, Mobile Application Testing, Client/Server Application Testing, Secure Development and Methodology, COTS Testing, Data Security, Discovery and Classification, Data Loss Prevention (DLP), Encryption, Database Protection, File Integrity Protection, User Security, Authentication, Authorization and Accounting (AAA), Federation, Provisioning, Training and Awareness, Network Services, Dedicated Line Access (T-1), Dedicated Internet Access, Ethernet over Copper, Fiber, Metro Ethernet, MPLS, IP-VPN, IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, DRaaS, Networking Hardware, Cloud, Private Cloud, Managed Information Technology

By Phone: +1-866-278-5578

By Email: info(at)htg360(dot)com

By Website: https://htg360.com/vulnerability-and-penetration-testing.html