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Archive for the ‘disaster recovery’ tag

What is Ransomware?   no comments

Posted at May 16, 2017 @ 10:12am internet security

What is Ransomware?

Over the past few years malware infections have seen an exponential growth. They are becoming more sophisticated, using newer methods that are not only harder to detect, but also require less user interaction. One of the more prominent forms of malware, especially in recent days, is called Ransomware.

 

Ransomware is form of malware, or malicious software, that carries out its attack by encrypting the data on a computer or server, then blocking access to that data until a ransom is paid.

 

Security researchers report attackers are not only upgrading their ransomware to make it more unbreakable, they are also using unique methods of distribution. In some cases, these methods require no user interaction at all. In the past, most ransomware infections occurred via phishing attacks, which required a user to click on a malicious website or email link. But these newer attacks are less dependent on user interaction and more dependent on unpatched software or Operating System vulnerabilities or poor security practices.

 

Ransomware is spreading faster and is self-replicating within organizations and businesses before coordinating ransom demands. It is critical that companies take the needed steps to prepare and protect their network as well as their local and cloud-based servers. The damage of ransomware encrypting and disabling all of your corporate data within seconds or minutes is real and has lead to some high profile cases including hospitals being locked out of all their data due to ransomware.

 

There are some easy yet vital best practices you should follow to protect yourself and your company from becoming victims of ransomware. First and by far the most important, backup your data. Second, consistently keep your software and systems up-to-date. Third, make sure you are utilizing some form of antivirus and malware protection software on your PC’s and servers. Finally, BACKUP YOUR DATA! Yes, I know I said that already, but this step is so critical it’s worth mentioning twice. If you don’t currently have a backup solution, there are many cloud-based disaster recovery and backup options to choose from, such as TurnKey Vault.

 

Your primary goal is to protect your users, not just your network. Whether they are on a laptop, tablet or smartphone, your users need to be protected everywhere.  However, it is unreasonable to assume that you will be 100% protected from every threat that exists. New more advanced methods to attack computers and encrypt their files are popping up everyday. This is why your number one priority should be to backup your data regularly.

 

Make sure whatever backup solution you deploy offers data encryption, supports both desktop PC’s and Macs, as well as Linux and Windows based servers. A backup solution like TurnKey Vault offers live cloud replication which will get you back on your feet in minutes in case of a true disaster by creating a live cloud-based copy of any PC workstation or Server accessible from anywhere over the Internet to get you access to your data and applications quickly.

 

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Written by David Maurer on May 16th, 2017

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Disaster Recovery Plan: Is Your Business Prepared?   1 comment

Posted at Sep 1, 2016 @ 8:44am disaster recovery

Disaster Recovery Plan

Disaster can strike at any time. From earthquakes to tornadoes to hurricanes, there is a wide variety of natural disasters that can take place and cause incredible damage to a business. In addition to natural disasters, businesses may also be harmed by fires, floods or IT issues. It is essential that businesses of all sizes have a comprehensive Disaster Recovery Plan.

Here are some of the issues that a business may face following a disaster and how they can ensure business continuity in the aftermath.

 

Dealing With Displacement

Many disasters can result in major physical damage to buildings and stores. This means that companies should have both an evacuation plan in place and a plan for dealing with the displacement that generally comes with major damage to a building. It may be days or weeks before a building is suitable for people to work in after a fire or a flood, and employees will still often still need a centralized location to work out of.

Organizations should determine ahead of time if employees will be expected to telecommute, if arrangements will be made to rent other facilities or if staff will be routed to other business locations. Some businesses may want to find a middle-ground where employees meet at certain locations a few times a week but do the majority of their work from home.

 

Employee Communication Systems

One of the major issues that companies run into, even when not dealing with a disaster, is how to communicate effectively. In many cases when there is a disaster, employees are no longer able to go to their normal workplace or call into a specific office to find out what is going on. Therefore, it’s important that a communication system is set up before a problem arises and one is needed.

There are a variety of ways to tackle communications following a disaster, including having a certain phone number that employees call to find out updates about the business. Alternatively, a mailing list or web page can be set up that allows employees to find out the status of a business and what they are expected to do.

 

Keep Copies of Physical Records

Although the paperless office has been a dream for decades, few businesses are completely digital. Most companies offer paper invoices, and customer contracts are almost always printed and signed in pen. This means that there is often a large amount of paperwork that should be stored in a computer but is not.

To ensure that physical records will still be accessible after a disaster, businesses should have a system in place for making and keeping copies of paperwork. A scanner can be employed to capture images of paperwork, and there are object character recognition software suites that can turn the scanned images into text. Once paperwork is in a computer system, it can then be uploaded to the cloud.

This brings us to one of, if not the most important component of a successful Disaster Recovery Plan, utilizing the cloud

 

Take Advantage of The Cloud

Cloud computing has changed the way that many businesses handle disaster recovery and business continuity planning. One of the biggest changes that being able to use a cloud backup has brought to the business world is the ability for smaller organizations to use the type of data recovery systems that historically were only available to large organizations.

Now, any business’ disaster recovery plan can include complete data backups that are off-site and redundant. Prior to cloud backup systems, businesses were often limited to storing data backups on-site. If a fire broke out or servers were damaged in some other way, on-site data would be lost. Off-site backups frequently required manually making copies of data and/or moving storage media to a different location before cloud computing streamlined the backup process.

The cloud now allows data to be saved automatically, and many businesses are working off of cloud-based systems at all times. Another major benefit of using the cloud for backups is that many other types of data storage have significant failure rates. Tapes, in particular, were used for decades as a method of storing backup data, but it has been found that they have about a 10 percent failure rate.

Cloud computing offers redundant file storage, so unlike with tapes or even hard drives that could potentially fail, data saved to the cloud is almost guaranteed to always be available. Systems can be set in place to back up data automatically, and cloud storage allows you to keep multiple copies of records with different time-stamps.

Another major benefit of using these types of backup systems is that they can be used almost anywhere. So long as an employee has access to the Internet, they should be able to log into the cloud and access business files and applications.

The Cloud is helping businesses recover their most critical systems and data faster, while also avoiding the expensive infrastructure costs of onsite or in-office datacenters. Leveraging the cloud is by far one of the best, most cost effective ways to protect your company and ensure business continuity when disaster strikes.

 

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Written by David Maurer on September 1st, 2016

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Moving your Business to the Cloud – Why it Makes Sense   no comments

Posted at Aug 23, 2016 @ 8:16am cloud

cloudknife

Today’s fast-paced and competitive business market demands that you keep up with the latest technology if you want to outperform your rivals. One of the greatest challenges with running a business today centers on storing your business’s information securely and efficiently. Rather than get bogged down with costly, time-consuming, and outdated IT infrastructures, you can increase your profits, expand your brand, keep your information secure, and outpace your business competitors by moving your small business to the cloud today.

 

Serving Your Customers Better

Time is money when it comes to serving your customers. When your IT infrastructure goes down, you are unable to help your clients and thus end up losing money that your business needs to survive and grow. You could even lose sales and profits to your competitors.

Because it is not prone to costly, time-consuming outages, the cloud proves to be the better, more affordable option for your business. You avoid losing time and money and your business can grow and profit at a pace that is not available with outdated database technology.

 

Growing Your Corporate Brand

Onsite or in-office data centers only allow your business to grow and expand so far in the market. When you want your company to go beyond your current limitations, you can go just about anywhere when you move your business to the cloud.

With its mobility, easy access, and user-friendly design, the cloud does not limit you to a physical location or within a specific boundary in the local market. You can access your company’s information from any location as well as send out projects to your employees regardless of where they are when you move your company’s operations to the cloud. This mobility puts you on target to reaching more customers and getting your business’s brand before an even larger audience.

 

Staying Up with the Latest Trend

You are not alone in your decision to move your business to the cloud. In fact, you will find yourself in great company as more business owners likewise decide to take advantage of this technology.

The latest studies show that more companies of all sizes are deciding to switch to cloud technology and away from outdated, costly, and time-consuming IT databases. By 2020, close to 80 percent of all businesses worldwide will have made use of cloud technology. Why be one of the last ones to take advantage of the newest and most innovative technology when you can make the switch today to the cloud? By moving your business to the cloud, you stay on top of your competition and make available technology that will let you serve your customers better and increase your profits to even higher levels.

Running a business of any size today requires that you make use of today’s most innovative and affordable technology. Whether it’s to improve performance or Disaster Recovery planning, utilizing cloud-based servers and backup solutions is essential. When you want to expand your brand without putting a lot of money into a restrictive and outdated IT infrastructure, you can stay at the top of your competitive game by moving your company to the cloud today.

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Written by David Maurer on August 23rd, 2016

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TurnKey Internet, Inc Launches Cloud Backup with Business Continuity Service   no comments

Posted at Sep 22, 2015 @ 2:54am backup

TurnKey Internet, Inc Launches Cloud Backup with Business Continuity Service

turnkey-vault-logoLATHAM, NEW YORK (September 22nd, 2015) – Sustainable IT solutions provider TurnKey Internet, Inc. announced today the launch of their TurnKey Vault Secure Cloud Backup service. The all new product delivers next-generation online backup services focused on business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) to individuals, businesses and large scale organizations across the globe.

TurnKey Vault offers next-generation backup technology including bare metal recovery, Linux, Windows and Mac operating system support, encrypted data protection, as well as backups for enterprise databases such as Oracle, MSSQL and MySQL. TurnKey Vault fills the void that exists with typical online backup solutions, by offering true business continuity disaster recovery (BCDR) through next-generation Virtual Disaster Recovery combined with live cloud replication to provide instant recovery to businesses by restoring any server, PC, or laptop into a cloud-based virtual private server that is accessible via the Internet.

TurnKey Vault’s live cloud replication allows instant restoration of your operating system, files, configuration, registry files, software programs, licenses, and everything to bring your laptop, PC, or server back into full production without any additional hardware or IT staff.  Your fully restored cloud-based server, PC or laptop is cloud-ready and accessible via the Internet via any mobile phone, tablet, PC using remote desktop protocols or any web browser to access your entire system.

”Data loss is a reality – you are more likely to lose your business data in the next 7 years than get audited by the IRS.” said Adam Wills, CEO of TurnKey Internet. He continued, “The reality of the current generation backup solutions out there is that it’s not enough to just backup your data and hope to put the pieces back together after disaster strikes- that can lead to countless days or weeks of lost business productivity and expensive IT support staff time. With our TurnKey Vault technology combined with our cloud-based datacenter services, we can literally restore an entire office building of lost servers and PCs back into fully accessible and functional copies so your business can get back up and running fast.”

TurnKey Vault offers a free for life 10 GB plan with all enterprise features enabled and a reseller system for VAR’s and channel partners to offer private label branded Secure Cloud Backup services to an unlimited number of clients or devices. For more information visit https://TurnKeyVault.com.

 

About Turnkey Internet

Founded in 1999, TurnKey Internet, Inc. is a full-service green data center and leading provider of sustainable web hosting and IT solutions. From its SSAE 16 Type 2 and ENERGY STAR® certified facility in Latham, NY—New York’s Tech Valley Region—TurnKey offers cloud-based hosted services, web hosting, communication services, web-based IT systems, software as a service (SaaS), enterprise colocation services, and computing as a service to clients in more than 150 countries. For more information, please call (518) 618-0999 or visit www.turnkeyinternet.net/media.

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Written by Adam on September 22nd, 2015

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Advanced Cloud Backup for Servers, PCs, and your Office to achieve full Business Continuity   no comments

Posted at Mar 1, 2015 @ 11:45am backup

cloudbackupIn the past, I’ve spoke to you about purchasing backup software. I’ve compared having backup software for your server like having car insurance. I’ve also spoken with you about the different type of backup technologies that exist. I went into details about a few different types of technologies. These were the following:

 

 

  1. Bare Metal backup/restores
  2. Cloud Backups
  3. Virtual Server backups

For more information, check it out at TurnkeyVault.com

You can read about these technologies on our blog here For this article, I will be talking about a new type of backup software. A brand new product that I’m very excited to announce that combines many of the different backup technologies and creates a new, hybrid backup system. A system that allows you to ensure business continuity for your customers. For those of you who do not know what business continuity is, I shall explain. Business continuity means that your business goes on even if your systems fail. Restores are therefore fast and even if the system is down, continuity means you still have access to key piece of business data. Maintaining business continuity should be one of your main focuses as a business owner.

 

Our new backup product helps to ensure business continuity by combing the best of the backup technologies presently on the market. To do this, our software must have address the following needs

 

  1. Ability to create server backups and workstation backups
  2. Ability to create backups locally as well as to the cloud
  3. Ability to only backup files that have changed in a system

turnkey-internet-backup-solutions

In order to show you the greatness of the new software, I will go through each ability listed above and show how these 3 key areas combine to provide you with unparalleled continuity for you business. Shall we begin?

 

Ability to create server backups and workstation backups

 

Server backups are the main component of any data protection installation. Servers are where all of the data resides. This includes current, recent and in many cases, older data. The server also is where operating systems, applications, configurations and system states reside. Ensuring these assets is the main job for any business owner or solution provider. Now while most business owners ensure that server backups exist, many over look their individual workstations. This includes the workstations in the field, home offices and satellite facilities. The data on theses PCS and workstations may contain important projects, critical documents, and irreplaceable creative works. Sometimes, even workstations in the home office or headerquarters may be overlooked, despite being tied directly into the corporate network.

 

Ensuring that you have backups for both the server and the workstations is one step to ensuring business continuity. Our new backup product allows for backups of the servers and the workstations. The backups can be stored locally on an in house backup server or backed up directly to the cloud, otherwise known as a disk-to-disk-to-cloud backup solution. This ensures that even if your local backup system fails, you will have another set of copies of backups stored in the cloud that you can easily deploy. This leads us directly into the next feature that is required for business continuity.

 

Ability to create backups locally as well as to the cloud

 

Until rather recently, in the last few years, the main option for backups were to do it all locally or on-premises. The backups were usually stored on a disk or even an additional tape drive. Larger businesses may have had another tier that sent backups off site for achriving. Research conducted by technology research firm of Gartner Inc, shows  that backups in an average data center only worked about 85% of the time. Remote offices were even worse at 75% of the time. Making matters worse, is that you do not know if you have a bad backup until you attempt to restore it.  With the introduction of the cloud, the game has changed. You can now backup fast and secure to a hybrid cloud backup. What do I mean by hybrid cloud backup?

 

The hybrid cloud backup or disk-to-disk-to-cloud, allows you to maintain an initial disk backup, which is still down in house, but has an additional tier that stores the backup in the cloud. This tends to be the best of both worlds as the cloud tier is scalable, easy to manager and guarantees data restores properly. Restoring from the cloud is perfect for remote offices that aren’t near the local disk backup. The main benefit of being able to restore a backup from disk or tape, is the speed of the restore. Our new backup software addresses the speed issue by only restoring the changed blocks on a system, which increases the speed of the restoration dramatically. How does only backing up the files that have changed on a system speed up the restore process?

 

Ability to only backup files that have changed in a system

 

What determines the speed of a backup? One factor would be the speed of the connection between the device or devices being backed up and the backup device itself. Another factor would also be the speed of the I/O(Input/Output) determined by the quickness of the disk. However, the biggest factor of them all when addressing the speed of a backup is the amount of data being backed up. Now, when you first create a backup, there is little that you can do to change the size of the data volume except for compression. The intitial backup copies the entire data set. There isn’t any way around this. Once the full backup is in place, maintaining the backup up is done by sending over only the changes of files.

 

Our new software does things a bit differently. Instead of backing up the changes to the file, the software instead only sends over changes to the blocks. Blocks are much smaller than a typical file. To put this in perspective, say you have a word document that is 300 KB in size. You edit the file and change one word in the file. A typical backup system will see the file has been changed and resend that entire file over to the backup software. That essentially won’t change the size of the file. What our new software does is looks at the changed block, representing the one word and send that over to the backup. This may not sound like a lot, but say you have thousands of files and have to resend every file, every time it has been changed. The size of the data will add up very quickly.  The sending over of updates to only blocks of data is called Deep deduplication. Deep deduplication allows for a great savings in disk, or if you’re backing up in the cloud, service costs. It also means your network isn’t bogged down by having to transport massive data sets. Also, these smaller data volumes allow for increase longevity to your local backup system as you’re taking maximum advantage of your space.

 

 

To summarize, our new backup software addresses the main issues when discussing business continuity. Having business continuity for any business is a competivite advantage that every serious business owner must consider. Having a disaster recovery solution in place that you can deploy in a matter of minutes, will go a long way to ensure that your business is running at optimum efficiency. We’re calling our new backup software(Insert name of backup software). You should head over to (Insert URL to backup software) purchase some business continuity insurance for your business

 

For more information, check it out at TurnkeyVault.com

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Alan’s Cloud Tip of the Month — April 2013   no comments

cloud and exclamation sign illustrationWhy move to the cloud? Here is April’s cloud tip:

A disaster recovery plan helps to restore data quickly…

For your cloud network to be as successful as it can be, a pre-configured disaster recovery plan is must. Cloud disaster recovery plans work automatically, at the time your server or data crashes. This helps in restoring at the earliest time possible. Incorporating such back-up and recovery applications makes the cloud an efficient platform for competitively managing IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS.

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Written by Alan on April 17th, 2013

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The Disaster Recovery Trivia Challenge has a new home   2 comments

Hey there, everybody who has been playing our weekly Disaster Recovery Trivia Challenge! Hey, also, everybody who should be! If you’re confused, you should read this article, explaining what the Disaster Recovery Trivia Challenge is. Trust us, it’s not something you’ll want to miss out on. Especially if you like T-shirts and/or United States Dollars in quantities of one hundred.

Now that you’re up to speed and that we’ve gotten the more unfortunate news out of the way, we can proceed to the purpose of this article.

Our Disaster Recovery Trivia Challenge has been such a success, everyone! This is a fact that we are beyond psyched about. However, it’s outgrowing its home on our social sites faster than you can say “Disaster Recovery Trivia Challenge”, so we decided it’s time to relocate it to somewhere it has a little more room to breathe… like our blog, for example.

The game is the same in all other aspects; this is just a relocation of the weekly facts and answer reveals. You can still feel free to chat away on social media, since we–quite obviously–love to.

Here’s a round-up of what has happened so far:

torfDR1

torfDR1-a

And the winner is… BILL Y.!

torfDR2

torfDR2-a
And the winner is… DAVID W.!

torfDR3

torfDR3-a

And the winner is… NICK J.!

torfDR4

torfDR4-a

And the winner is… ALEX E.!

torfDR5

torfDR5-a

And the winner is… Russell G.!

torfDR6

torfDR6-a

And the winner is… Mike H.!

torfDR7

torfDR7-a

And the winner is… DARREN C.!

torfDR8 (2)

torfDR9-a

 

And the winner is… Empty Mirror Books!

 

Now that we are up to speed, here is this week’s TRUE or FALSE question:

torfDR9

So what do you think? Is it TRUE or FALSE? Tell us, and you could win a T-shirt and a shot at the grand prize of $100! You can post your guess here, or continue the conversation on our Facebook and Twitter pages. We don’t care how, we just want to give away T-shirts! Check back here later in the week to see if you’re our new winner! GOOD LUCK!

Even though the Disaster Recovery Trivia Challenge has a new home, you should still follow our social sites. We’re constantly on the look-out for share-worthy content on a vast array of super-cool topics–everything from hosting to gadgets to sustainability–and we’d love to hear your voice in the crowd.

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Swing by our social sites, play a game, get a t-shirt… win $100…   16 comments

True or false?Big news, everyone! Starting Monday, February 25th, 2013–also known as next Monday–we will be holding a contest on our social sites!

After the panic that both Hurricane Sandy and Winter Storm Nemo brought about, it has become clear to us that far too many people are uninformed about the importance of being prepared. Back up your data, guys! Prepare for disaster! It’s so, so imperative in running a business successfully, and ensuring its continuity. You wouldn’t drive a car without insurance, would you? Maybe you would, how would I know? But if you do, cut it out.

With that being said, we decided to take action. Introducing: The Disaster Recovery Trivia Challenge!

HOW TO PLAY:

–   Every Monday morning, stop by our Facebook and/or Twitter page(s). There, among the piles of awesomeness, you’ll find a fact about disaster recovery, or businesses’ lack thereof.

–   Read the fact, and decide if you think it’s “True” or “False”.

–   Once you’ve made up your mind, tell us what you think! You can submit your guess on Facebook in the comment section of the fact post, or tweet it to us on Twitter. Luckily, both “True” AND “False” are 140 characters or less—for all you little blue birdies out there. Phew!

Casting your guess (when and IF—that’s a big “if”, see?—you “like” us on Facebook or “follow” us on Twitter…or both, if you just really like hanging out with us) automatically earns you an entry to win— DRUM-ROLL, PLEASE…

SAMSUNG

Oooooohhh…

SAMSUNG

Aaaaaaahhh…

GTP1R *

Wooooowww…

—A free shirt! As a proud owner of one of these babies and a lover of all items acquired through winning giveaways, I can confidently tell you that you shouldn’t sit this one out.

At the end of every week, also known as Friday, we will not only be revealing the answer, but choosing a winner at random. Did you see I said “every week”? That means that with every new fact that we present, comes another opportunity for you to win. So, if you play and aren’t selected, bet your bottom dollar that the sun will come out next week.

We have 10 disaster recovery facts to talk to you about, so that means there are 10 chances to win. That also means that there will be 10 winners of TurnKey finery when all is said and done. However, we want to have a grand-prize winner, because, well… why not? At the end of this 10-week period, when we’re done making it rain T-shirts on you all, we will draw one grand-prize winner from the pool of weekly winners. That one, final, lucky winner will receive $100! Don’t spend it all in one place! Unless you’re spending it at TurnKey Internet, that is.

So what do you think? Will you play along? At the very least, check in on Fridays for some valuable information that just might end up saving you.

 

 

* Recognize this image, anyone? This T-shirt is the answer to this week’s  “Guess that photo” puzzle! For those of you who haven’t heard yet, “Guess that Photo” is another game we play on our social sites! Tune in every week for a new picture, and see if you can guess what it is.

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