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Windows Server 2003 End of Life. What does this mean for your business?

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2Apr 2015
IT Support, IT Trends, Our blog, Windows Server 2003 Comments Off on Windows Server 2003 End of Life. What does this mean for your business?

Windows Server 2003 End of Life. What does this mean for your business?

There’s only 74 days to go before Microsoft ends its support for Windows Server 2003.

On July 14, 2015, Microsoft will be terminating its “Extended Support” For Windows Server 2003, a platform which despite stalwart service for over 10 years is beginning to show its age. Given that “Mainstream Support” for this application was ended back in July 2010, this is a date which has been creeping up on us for a while.

Why should you be looking to migrate to a more modern solution? Microsoft will no longer be delivering security updates for any version of Windows Server 2003, which could leave your organisation susceptible to security risks; not to mention the expense and difficulty of maintaining legacy hardware and compliance standards. With products such as Windows Server 2012 R2, Azure or Office 365 offering a far more efficient and up to date solution, to maintain functionality the time is now to begin renovating your infrastructure.

Give us a call, and we can talk you through the best roadmap for your business to avoid the risk and cost of maintaining an outdated service.

1Apr 2015
business, Our blog Comments Off on Save up to £3000 off your Broadband installation with BDUK

Save up to £3000 off your Broadband installation with BDUK

Today it was announced that Sheffield has joined 49 other UK cities in the Government’s Super Connected Cities programme run by Broadband Delivery UK (Part of the Dept. for Culture, Media & Sport). Highlander I.T. & Telecoms are delighted to have been selected as a BDUK registered partner.

We are therefore able to help you benefit from up to £3000 off your quoted upgrade cost through the Connection Voucher scheme, a government incentive providing financial support to get your business upgraded to SuperFast broadband in select cities.

All you need to do is contact Highlander…we will do the rest.

Call us today on 0114 292 3800 or email business@highlanderuk.com

26Mar 2015
IT Support, Our blog Comments Off on Pro-active Remote Management

Pro-active Remote Management

Do I.T. problems get in the way of the smooth running of your business?

  • Does your business suffer from downtime because of failing I.T. systems?
  • Do your staff have to take time away from what they’re doing to call your service provider when an issue occurs?

read more

3Feb 2015
Our blog Comments Off on Welcome to our new website

Welcome to our new website

We are delighted to bring you our new website.

2nd February sees Highlander I.T. and Telecoms launch it’s new website, part of our continued commitment to providing better services and tools for our customers and prospective customers. We hope you enjoy it…your feedback is always welcome!

 

22Oct 2014
Our blog Comments Off on Trends and forecasting in today’s business world…

Trends and forecasting in today’s business world…

The old adage of ‘time flies when you’re having fun’ comes to mind (honestly!) as our business passes another financial year end.

At the end of the year we conduct a full business SWOT and make our improvement plans for the year ahead.

We should also take a little time to celebrate success, however due to the nature of the team, we rarely do too much of this and it’s usually a brief nod and a wink, a pat on the back, and then away we go again.

At this time our forecasts are also set. Or are they targets? Whatever they are, they are decided upon, written down and we work to them.

I reflect upon ten years ago when it was quite simple to lay out the forecast; Inputting the sales from where we knew they were going to come, adding in the costs where we knew we’d need to spend. All very easy back in the day.

How times have changed.

We turnover more now, so that in itself makes the task harder, however it’s the uncertainty from customers that leads to forecasting being an altogether more difficult task.

Client wallets, or in particular thoughts on when they are going to spend, have tended to stay closed a lot more in recent years.

Economic uncertainty, I.T. becoming more reliant, our ability to give quicker DR solutions should a catasrophe arise have all contributed to this as well. Now we see more ‘we’ll spend it when we have to!’ budgeting.

The impact of this can be great to a service delivery organisation. If clients aren’t sure when they are going to upgrade, add new businesses or develop systems then we can never be sure on when to ‘staff up’ or invest too.

Not only this but trends on technical fault calls into our business seem to follow very little pattern these days. Gone is the Monday rush, the Friday afternoon relax, and the weekend ‘shut up shop’.

Customers now work flexible hours in flexible locations and rarely follow the traditional rush hour, all enabled by the I.T. and telecoms we provide and support of course.

So we’ve set a forecast for this year like we always do. We have a plan to follow in terms of staff recruitment, our own internal systems investment, our own technical training and our marketing funds. We have also listed how many technical faults we believe our clients will have, on each day of each month…

I now forecast that by the end of the 1st quarter an additional urgent client request for a new system, a customer call regarding a business they’ve just purchased, a new client out of the blue requiring an urgent overhaul and the latest technology requiring plenty of investment for staff training, will have turned that forecast upside down, and time will continue to fly.

That’s modern business in this sector, and it’s our response to this that sees us continue to grow and retain clients and staff alike. Sitting in this industry and simply following ‘the forecast’ is a recipe for disaster.

That’s why I love coming to work in a morning.

Steve Brown – MD

 

27Feb 2014
Our blog Comments Off on 50% Grants Available for ICT Projects for SME’s in the East Midlands!

50% Grants Available for ICT Projects for SME’s in the East Midlands!

Are you planning an ICT project but don't have the funding?

If you are looking to spend bewtween £4,000 and £20,000 on an ICT project, have less than 250 employees and your business is located in one of the local authorities detailed below, then you may be eligible for 50% matched funding.

Aim of the Scheme:

The aim of the scheme is to provide financial support to eligible businesses who are introducing and developing new systems to improve business performance. The funding should either help businesses get the most from their existing I.T. with the implementation of new systems or software or to assist with the implementation of new ICT resources.

Criteria:

Applying businesses must…

  • Have been trading for at least 12 months at the time of making the application
  • Provide a business plan which outlines their project
  • Clearly demonstrate how the ICT project will improve the business
  • Provide up to date financial accounts
  • Demonstrate the commercial viability of the project
  • Apply for a minimum of £2000 (i.e. investing a minimum of £4000 to be awarded a £2000 grant)

Eligible Local Authority Areas:

  • Ashfield District Council
  • Bassetlaw District Council
  • Bolsover District Council
  • Boston Borough Council
  • Chesterfield Borough Council
  • Corby Borough Council
  • Derby City Council
  • East Lindsey District Council
  • Leicester City Council
  • Lincoln City Council
  • Mansfield District Council
  • Nottingham City Council
  • Oadby and Wigston District Council

How to Apply:

Contact a member of the eBusiness Club team on:

Tel: 0844 225 1959

Website: www.ebusinessclub.biz

 

 

16Jan 2014
Our blog Comments Off on Don’t Become a Victim of Cryptolocker

Don’t Become a Victim of Cryptolocker

Millions of I.T. Users in the UK Being Targeted in Mass Spam Campaign!

 

Last week the UK's National Crime Agency warned that tens of millions of customers were being targeted by the Cryptolocker malware. Worryingly the primary targets seem to be small and medium businesses. This is a highly aggressive form of 'ransomware' and can leave an entire organisation without access to its files.

 

What does it look lik and how does it attack?

Cryptolocker uses various tactics to lure its victims through email communication. The emails will contain a .zip file which the receiver is encouraged to open (a voicemail message, an unpaid invoice etc). Once opened the malware can encrypt the entire organisation's files with no way of retreiving them (apart from paying the ransom). This is a severe and aggressive form of malware with emails often looking like they come from a legitimate source (UK Banks for example.) 

 

How do I reduce my risk?

Refrain from opening any unsolicited emails

Ensure your files are always backed up

Call Highlander if you are concerned – we will run a FREE security audit and check your vulnerability.

Call one of our friendly experts today: 0114 292 3800