After our last post, something told me to count how many articles we had written, and I was shocked to see the number was 49. Wow, I thought to myself, #50 had better be good!
So, what advice could we give on this gold anniversary that would be most beneficial to you? Here is the best advice we can offer:
First, it is often said that you should change your password, but why is that? The reason we it people say this is not because someone is actively trying to hack into your system, but because password lists are sold often on the dark web. That is why you should change them at least annually, preferably every six months.
Secondly, what are all your passwords and are you the owner of your accounts? When we work with clients, we ensure that they’re listed as the owner of the account, and we are merely technicians responsible for the technical aspects of the solution.
The same rule applies for documentation. You should be the owner of all your organizations data, and your IT team should be responsible for documenting any changes that they make. I know this is an issue because when we provide infrastructure documentation to a new client, most say that they have never received anything like it from any support company.
If you don’t know where to find your IT related documentation, or if you are not sure what to look for, here are some guidelines to use.
Start with the basics…
What software do you have?
What is your internet service provider’s configuration?
Where is your firewall configuration backed up?
What are the passwords for all systems? These could include:
- Internet Service Provider
- Phone Provider details
- Website Hosting Provider
- Email Provider (Administrator logon credentials)
- Email Spam Filtering Provider (Administrator logon credentials)
- Backup Solution Information (Accompanying documentation is beneficial)
- Internet Registrar where your Domain Name information is accessed (Such as GoDaddy, Network Solutions, Wix, Registrar.com, etc.)
- Anti-virus Provider
- Anti-malware Provider
- Software Vendors (Both on premise and cloud-based solutions)
- Hardware Vendors (Warranty information for all hardware is quite helpful)
- Hardware Key Locations (Some servers, racks and other hardware items have key lock options)
- Hardware passwords (routers, firewalls, switches, servers, laptops, desktops)
- Most Importantly, Server and/or Firewall “Administrator” logon credentials
…and build your documentation from there. Most importantly, changes to this document should occur frequently after any change to your system information.
What ends up happening to organizations over the years is that financial information will be handled by one person and documented in one place, while marketing was documented by another person and saved to a different location and so on.
Small and medium businesses that do not have this information readily available are forced to pay dearly for this lack of prior proper planning when unexpected issues arise.
It is imperative that all your information be in one place and accessible to you from multiple locations for you to truly be in control of your IT environment.
It just takes a little bit of time on your calendar to ensure that you are aware of how organized your infrastructure is.
Thanks for reading my friends and as Jonny said to Ponyboy, stay gold.
We at Advanced Systems Solutions have helped many organizations streamline their processes. If you’re looking for an IT support company to keep your organization running optimally, with unmatched customer service, contact us. We love to help!
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Disclaimer: The above information is not intended as technical advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an IT Professional before acting or relying on any information in this communiqué.