Published 16th December 2021 | Cybersecurity, Managed IT Support

What is your MSP doing for you over the Christmas break?

What risks does the holiday season bring? 

Before we look at the risks themselves, it’s important to note that the festive season doesn’t necessarily mean more targeted attacks on SMEs themselves. 

However, who among us hasn’t done the odd bit of lunchtime shopping on company devices or personal devices used for work? And it’s this clandestine bargain hunting that poses the problem. It gives cybercriminals a route into your business. 

Phishing scams

Phishing scams are a year-round problem. But during major retail events like Black Friday, the chances of a successful attack grow exponentially. With so many of us frantically shopping around for the best deals, our ability to spot the telltale signs of a scam often diminishes as quickly as our bank balances. 

It’s a simple but potentially disastrous equation. If you’re in a bit of a rush, you’re not in the best frame of mind for considered judgements. And, if you’re already shopping, a fake email claiming to relate to what you’re doing online might not set off the alarm bells it normally would. 

Fake online retailers

Black Friday often comes with a deluge of fake websites claiming to sell this year’s must-have products at bargain prices. Unfortunately, most of these are simply fronts for cybercriminals to acquire consumers’ data or launch attacks. Like phishing scams, these can be hard to spot in the hurly-burly of major retail events, making a successful attack much more likely. 

Outdated software 

Again, this is a problem 365 days of the year. But the festive season provides the perfect cover for hackers to test out the vulnerabilities of popular software. 

Firstly, because technical teams’ attention tends to be focused on ensuring apps can handle the sudden surge in demand rather than security. Secondly, because many consumers will suddenly be using apps they haven’t used or updated in months, often on devices with access to your business data. 

Public and home networks

You probably have decent network protection in your physical workplace, but do your staff working from home? And does the cafe around the corner with the free WiFi that everyone uses?

Unsecure public and home networks don’t stop being a problem for the rest of the year, but during busy retail periods, when people are much more likely to shop online, the risk is heightened. It gives cybercriminals an unbelievably simple way to hack into any unsecured devices on the network. Once in, they’ll be able to get to any company assets accessible from that device. 

Weak passwords

You’ll hear us talking about the importance of strong passwords a lot. It’s the simplest thing you can change to improve your cybersecurity. However, passwords become doubly important in busy retail periods due to the amount of traffic on popular sites. It’s the perfect setting for cybercriminals to try out large-scale brute-force attacks and find out whose passwords aren’t strong enough. 

Managed IT services are always an essential asset for your small and medium-sized business. They’re convenient, dependable, and don’t require an in-house IT team that needs space and benefits. However, managed IT services become an even more crucial player in keeping your business running and safe during the holidays.

Here’s how managed IT services can keep the holidays jolly:

Cybersecurity

Widespread cyberattacks include ransomware, cryptoware, and viruses. Unlike your employees, cybercriminals don’t take a vacation, and they don’t sleep. They’re also constantly adapting to the latest malicious trend in technology.

Luckily for you, managed IT services are there to meet cybercriminals every step of the way. Managed service providers, like Tech Rockstars, are up 24/7 monitoring your systems, which means you can enjoy Thanksgiving dinner and opening presents without stressing that your system will shut down or be corrupted.

In a survey of cybersecurity professionals at various organizations across nine countries, researchers found that 89% were concerned about cybersecurity with the impending holiday season. However, several organizations admitted that they have no plan in place to deal with a possible attack. There is no better time than the present and managed IT services will outline a plan with you.

Business Continuity

Managed service providers stay ahead of cybercriminals and keep up-to-date on the latest research and trends. If the holidays are your busy season, they’ll make sure business continuity is possible. And during business hours, they’ll maintain systems so you can take advantage of the extra sales opportunities over the holidays.

Cyberattacks can slow down or completely shut down your business operations. With managed IT services, you’re able to keep doing business while they work everything out for you. 

Preventing Downtime

When your employees can’t perform necessary work due to technological issues, this downtime is costly and puts unnecessary strain on your business. If November and December are busy months for your business, you must ensure that you can make the most of your time and have everything functioning properly.

Managed IT services like Tech Rockstars can keep your business running smoothly during the holidays. With their latest technology and cyber experts, they’re able to provide you with end-to-end support that ensures you stay lit up all season long.

Data Backup and Recovery

When it comes to data backup and recovery, there is no room for error. Whether you need to recover a single file or an entire system, managed IT services can get your staff running quickly and efficiently.

With more customers making purchases online or during peak hours, data backup and recovery are vital to keeping your business safe from potential threats that can corrupt systems. When your managed IT services partner is there to support you, you can be stress-free during this busy time of year.

With advanced monitoring systems and cutting-edge cyber security infrastructure, managed IT services can meet your business virtually anywhere.

Make it a Safe and Successful Season

Technology is at the core of your company’s success during the holidays. With managed IT services, you’re able to secure systems for peak efficiency while keeping up-to-date on the latest threats and trends.

Next steps

Here at Alliance Solutions, we offer complete outsourced IT management for our clients or deliver specific services as and when needed.

We welcome the questions prospective clients ask, as it gives us an opportunity to showcase exactly what we offer, and our understanding of how important an effective relationship with an MSP is to wider business delivery.

If you’d like to know more about our IT solutions and services, please contact us on 0800 292 2100 or via email at contactus@alliancesolutions.co.uk.

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