Natural Disasters Can Destroy, But Your Data Is Safe If It’s In The Cloud
This past hurricane season has brought some of the most harrowing, widespread destruction the southeastern United States has ever been forced to weather. But, despite the enormous, tragic cost of these natural disasters, the people of these communities persevere. In the wake of widespread wind damage and flooding, communities have banded together. Thousands of volunteers and neighbors are working as one to rebuild and find the way forward. There is no doubt, however, that the havoc wreaked by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma will produce aftershocks that will echo through affected areas for decades.
To anyone who turtled up in their attic in the middle of the storm or just saw a picture of the wreckage in the news after the hurricanes departed, the physical damage caused by the storm is obvious. What’s less obvious is the effect these storms have on the futures of the survivors, the reverberating impact that cuts thousands of life plans short and forces individuals to completely change their course in a cruel reversal of fate.
“Forty percent of small businesses don’t survive these events,” said Russel Honore, the previous Joint Task Force commander for Hurricane Katrina. The electrical grid is knocked out for days, and businesses are forced to close the office for what they hope is a temporary period due to flooding.
Each day that a business can’t provide service, it’s bleeding money — a cost that many businesses, especially the little guys, can’t absorb. So, they close for good, their buildings go up for lease and those who were once the heads of promising young businesses are now unemployed, in the market for a job in a city up to its neck in water.
Just as common is a business that finds its central data structures wiped out by physical damage. Following a hurricane, most businesses near the storm should have little trouble cleaning up and remodeling following nasty flooding, but if their servers, computers and network infrastructure have been wiped out, it’s a completely different story.
Oftentimes, a catastrophic loss of data will shutter a business for good. A 2010 report by technology research firm Gartner Group stated that 43 percent of businesses went belly-up almost immediately after a “major loss” of data, while 51% shut down within just two years. That leaves a measly 6% survival rate for businesses that suffer company-wide data loss.
These are scary numbers, to be sure, but there is good news: Businesses that migrate their data to the cloud are at significantly less risk of losing vital data. This is not only because your typical cloud service will back up your up-to-date data with several levels of redundancy, but because most cloud services are actually more secure than their on-site counterparts in general.
And make no mistake, businesses with on-site data are susceptible to loss far beyond physical disasters like hurricanes, flooding, earthquakes or solar flares. Don’t forget the risks disgruntled employees, freak accidents and, especially, hackers pose to your precious data. While it’s true that all of these risks still exist with cloud-based services, they’re much reduced. A 2012 Alert Logic report stated that “on-premises environment users actually suffer more [hacking] incidents” than cloud-based users, while also being subjected to “significantly more brute force attacks.” When you think about it, this makes sense. With your entire system backed up on a number of off-site locations, it’s much more difficult for hackers to encrypt the entirety of your data and hold it for ransom.
That said, not every business absolutely needs the cloud to stay secure. Certain business models need on-site structures for various reasons, and a few find it more cost-effective. Still, the cloud is definitely something that any savvy business owner needs to examine closely as a potential option. It could mean the difference between flourishing in the next fiscal quarter and going under.
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Engage Others: Learning From The Pros
Did you know that Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone and Charles Lindbergh were all close friends?
It’s true. They all had homes in Florida and often fished, dined and socialized together. These four men, all incredibly successful, shared similar interests and philosophies. Through their individual perspectives, they challenged, sharpened and expanded one another’s thinking.
These men all knew that we become greater by association with those who are great. Connecting with others and building mutually beneficial relationships can not only help you live a fulfilled life, but leverage your efforts to realize your full potential.
My new book, The Potential Principle, offers several powerful tools for creating breakout improvement on your journey toward bettering your best. One of the most important of these is to “engage others to avail yourself of their wisdom and help.”
Sure, if you want to be all that you can be, you need to take responsibility for your own success and do the work it takes to achieve your dreams. But at the same time, you can and should look to others for ideas, mentoring, coaching, encouragement and friendship. Engaging the right people will certainly help you go farther, faster.
The knowledge you can glean from the experiences of someone you admire and respect will cut years off your learning curve. It will help you replicate their victories and, hopefully, avoid a few of their failures.
But as my friend Larry Winget says, be careful who you take advice from. Listen to people who have actually done something, not someone who just talks about doing it. To become the best, engage only with the best. Ask yourself, who are the best people in your field or area of interest? Are you familiar with the top performers? Look to them as an example to learn from and emulate. Consider asking one of these winners to advise, coach or mentor you on a regular basis.
A good mentor will put you miles ahead on the road to success. Anders Ericsson, author of Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise, writes, “The most optimal way to improve your performance is to find a teacher who has been teaching other people to reach the level of performance that you want to attain.” Makes sense, right?
Remember, others can help you get better, but that can’t make you actually get better. Their concern, aid and support can only benefit you if you are willing to do what is necessary to reach your goals. If you’re up to the challenge, however, engage others as you strive for improvement. It will turbocharge your efforts and enrich your life!
Mark Sanborn, CSP, CPAE, is the president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an “idea studio” that seeks to motivate and develop leaders in and outside of business. He’s the bestselling author of books like Fred Factor and The Potential Principle and a noted expert on leadership, team building, customer service and company change. He holds the Certified Speaking Professional designation from the National Speakers Association and is a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame. Check out any of his excellent books, his video series, “Team Building: How to Motivate and Manage People” or his website, marksanborn.com, to learn more.
Avoid This Critical Security Mistake
If you have employees carting around laptops packed with data sensitive to your business, you should be taking added security measures. It’s all too easy to nab a laptop from a vacant chair while the user isn’t looking. No matter how strong the password, it will almost certainly be cracked, leaving anything unencrypted on the laptop ripe for the taking.
To avoid this, it’s a good idea to keep all your sensitive data in one secure cloud service, meaning it’s never actually on your employee’s hard drive at all. When an item goes missing, you can easily revoke access from that machine.
How To Fix Your Slow Home Internet
Network a little sluggish? First, head over to SpeedTest.net and run a test. Do the resulting numbers align with the Internet speeds you’re paying for? If so, you might just need to upgrade. If that’s not the issue, turn both your modem and router off and power them on again, making sure to let the modem power fully on before powering up the router once more. Is the Internet slow on all your computers? If not, it’s likely a hardware problem on a particular machine. You may also just be suffering from a weak WiFi signal, requiring some careful repositioning of your router. Make sure there aren’t any bandwidth hogs running in the background. System update downloads, file-syncing services and BitTorrent are common culprits. If none of these work, it may be time to get on the phone with your Internet service provider and work it out with them. Lifehacker.com 8/24/17
97% Of Business Owners Cannot Spot This Threat To Their Business
The most common ways businesses get hacked isn’t some elaborate scheme, it’s as simple as clicking a link. Phishing, where hackers trick employees of a business into clicking a link containing malicious software (often masquerading as a regular email from internal staff), is on the rise. Even more troubling is recent data from company Inspired eLearning that shows that as much as 97% of individuals can’t identify a typical phishing email. To avoid this, train your employees to keep an eye out for these sneaky emails. If staff receives an email that requests sensitive or personal information, such as passwords, they are typically phishing emails. Employees should never click a link from a source that seems even remotely suspicious or strange, regardless of who it’s coming from. smallbiztrends.com 8/18/17