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Backup Disaster and Recovery

How to Calculate the Cost of Downtime for Your Clients

Featured Post

How to Calculate the Cost of Downtime for Your Clients

As your clients' trusted partner and managed IT services provider (MSP), you're responsible for minimizing service disruptions and unplanned downtime.

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The Worst Passwords You Could Possibly Use Are…

Posted by Lily Teplow on June 7, 2018

The Worst Passwords You Could Possibly Use Are

You tell your clients all the time about good password policies. You tell your friends and family. You may be able to rattle off in your sleep “unique, long strings of varied characters with multiple numbers, capitals, and special characters.” But just how many people are heeding the call for better security? Has the public started taking cyber security seriously?

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security

The Basics of Cyber Security Training for End-Users

Posted by Lily Teplow on May 10, 2018

The Basics of Cyber Security Training for End-Users

What’s the biggest risk to an organization’s information security? Hint: it has little to do with the technology. Rather, it is the action—or inaction—of their employees.

Human error has become a major weak point today; one that is easily exploited by cyber criminals. In fact, almost 90 percent of cyber attacks are caused by human error or behavior. Therefore, it’s vital that businesses have some form of cyber security training in place to educate employees on the importance of protecting sensitive information and what malicious threats to look out for.

As an IT services provider committed to protecting your clients and their business, the task of security education and training falls into your hands. Keep reading to discover which essential elements you should cover when providing security awareness training.

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

5 Core Components to a Cyber Security Offering

Posted by Chris Johnson on May 1, 2018

5 Core Components to a Cyber Security Offering

My career path has shifted in recent months, from running my own managed services company to jumping into the security space as a managed security services provider (MSSP). During this time, I’ve come to learn which tools are needed for the job and how to best utilize them to define a cyber security offering. 

The tools and resources an IT security provider leverages should be tied to both securing your business and protecting your clients, which means selecting the right ones is extremely important. For any foundational security offering, I’ve found that the following five tools and components are most essential to thriving, and surviving, in this market.

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Topics: Data Protection, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

The Top 5 MSP Blog Posts of April 2018

Posted by Lily Teplow on April 27, 2018

Monthly-Blog-Roundup-April-2018

The month of April brought us many things: the start of baseball season, the oncoming of warmer weather (for most of us), and yet another 30 days filled with valuable, business-driving content on the blog! MSP sales and marketing seems to be the theme of this month’s roundup. Our most popular posts cover topics such as the keys to success in managed IT services, how to generate more leads, how to better prepare for sales conversations, and much more.

Read on to discover the top five blog articles our readers couldn’t get enough of this month, with special bonus content at the end of this post!

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Blogging

Explaining the Cloud to End Users: 4 Things to Cover

Posted by Joseph Tavano on April 24, 2018

Explaining the Cloud to End Users: 4 Things to Remember

While cloud integration is virtually ubiquitous in modern computing, it is often misunderstood or misinterpreted outside of the IT industry. Outside of the sphere of tech insiders, where acronyms, jargon and abstract product names are commonplace, the idea of “The Cloud” can be shrouded in mystery from years of pop-culture confusion and misuse in fiction.

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Topics: Data Protection, Cloud Computing

Phishing Scams: What You Need to Know to Avoid Them

Posted by Hunter Smith on April 11, 2018

Phishing-Scams-and-How-to-Avoid-Them

As a managed IT services provider (MSP), there are a myriad of security threats that you and your clients face today. One threat that constantly comes up is phishing scams. These scams can be fairly simple, yet very effective at duping the user and capturing their private information. Even the slightest clue to a username and/or password can give hackers all they need to break into private systems and steal information from companies and individuals—and for this reason, it’s crucial to be aware of phishing schemes, tactics and best practices for avoidance.

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Topics: Tech Quick Tips, Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

Top 3 BDR Posts for World Backup Day 2018

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 30, 2018

Top 3 BDR Posts for World Backup Day 2018

What would you do if you lost everything? This is exactly the question that World Backup Day prompts you to consider when you land on their awareness website. Data is such a business driver today, but one small accident or failure could cause productivity and profit to come to a complete halt. For MSPs, an essential first step in building a successful business continuity plan for your clients is helping them recognize the need for backup and disaster recovery (BDR)—and what better day to start than the day before World Backup Day?

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Topics: Industry News, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

What to Do with All of That Data: Retention Best Practices

Posted by Lily Teplow on March 22, 2018

What to Do with All of That Data: Retention Best Practices

Data and corporate information are the lifeblood of your clients’ business—there’s no denying their importance. Today, organizations across all industries are tasked with ensuring that data is protected, retained, and accessible when needed, yet many lack the appropriate archiving and retention policies.

As an MSP, it’s your job to be your clients' strategic advisor and help them understand exactly what their retention requirements are for various business needs and data types. So, in honor of spring cleaning season, we’re providing you with best practices to help you tidy up your clients’ IT environment and implement retention policies for more secure, accessible data.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

The Journey to GDPR Compliance [PODCAST]

Posted by Brandon Garcin on March 7, 2018

The Journey to GDPR Compliance Podcast

If there’s one acronym we’ve heard time and time again this year, it’s GDPR. Standing for General Data Protection Regulation, GDPR is one of the more prominent discussion topics in our industry right now, and there’s a lot that both MSPs and vendors must do in order to show compliance when doing business with European citizens.

On this special podcast episode, we bring you a Q&A discussion between Paul Balkwell, Vice President of International Sales at Continuum, and Hunter Smith, Chief Information Security Officer at Continuum. Paul and Hunter discuss Continuum’s journey to GDPR compliance, provide a status update to our European partners and answer some frequently asked questions. Tune in now to learn more!

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Topics: Industry News, Data Protection

Can You Spot the 6 Security Flaws in This Photo?

Posted by Lily Teplow on February 23, 2018

Can You Spot the 6 Security Flaws in This Photo?

As the cyber threat landscape continues to evolve, so too does the sophistication of cyber attacks. We’re all aware of the ongoing work that needs to be done to keep sensitive information safe from hackers and stay ahead of the threat landscape, but there’s another side to the coin, and that’s physical security.

Many offices don't enforce best practices for physical information security, and frankly may just not be aware of them. As their MSP, your job is to educate them on these best practices, both from a technology standpoint and from a physical standpoint.

So, it’s time to put your knowledge to the test. Can you find the six security flaws in this picture?

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

Protect Yourself and Clients from Malware

Posted by Hunter Smith on November 30, 2017

"Attention! We've detected malicious activity on your computer. Download antivirus now."

Spyware, Keyloggers, Scareware (described in example above), Ransomware and more. It seems like malware, or malicious software, lurks around every corner of the Internet, be it in a threatening email attachment or false online advertisement. There are now newer, subtler ways for your clients to have their personal data stolen, and few will be able to detect the warning signs of the various types of malware attacks before the damage is done and the data is lost. It is time to teach yourself and your clients how to prevent malware from causing unnecessary problems on your computers and servers.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Mobile Device Management and IT Mobility, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

The Future of Cybersecurity Is Intelligent, Integrated and in the Cloud

Posted by Dawn Farrell on September 29, 2017

The Future of Cybersecurity Is Intelligent, Integrated and in the Cloud

There’s no arguing that technology is increasingly evolving and shifting. In recent years, we’ve seen this as a shift towards the cloud, providing many advantages and offering an agility never seen before in computing. As a natural progression, it makes sense that security solutions are being offered from the cloud, in the ‘as a service’ format. Experts predict this will grow at five times the rate of traditional software delivery.

Cloud-based technologies have the upper hand in the fight against malicious attacks and software vulnerabilities. The remarkable speed in reaction, along with the abilities to analyze vast amounts of data, are compelling benefits. There is also a welcome factor of convenience. Service providers can deliver a truly scalable solution to clients, enabling business expansion and an increase in revenue streams. Let’s take a deeper look into the future of cybersecurity and how service providers can capitalize.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Mobile Device Management and IT Mobility, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

10 Security Questions That Will Help Prospects Realize Their Need for Your Services

Posted by Lily Teplow on August 17, 2017

10 Security Questions That Will Help Prospects Realize Their Need for Your Services

One of the biggest challenges for managed services providers (MSPs) looking to add new clients is that prospects don't always realize their need for managed IT services. A business that may be a prime candidate for your services may be operating under the mindset of, "I've come this far without your help, why should I pay for it now?" The tough part is getting these prospects to answer that question for themselves.

So, how do you go about getting your prospects to that "aha!" moment? You need them to truly understand the risks that are facing them. Once they do, there is a very good chance that they will realize that they can't afford to risk data loss, data breach or the downtime that many of these vulnerabilities present. Instead of preaching to your prospects for hours on end, try challenging them to answer a set of security questions for you to make them realize just how ill-prepared they may be.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

The Next Big Thing for Continuum BDR? Introducing Archive.

Posted by Joseph Tavano on June 28, 2017

The Next Big Thing for Continuity247® Introducing Archive

As you already know, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for the backup needs of small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Even the name of the SMB category itself is representative of this scenario. With an array of company sizes in various industries, the backup requirements will differ for numerous reasons.

To meet that demand, Continuum BDR is expanding to offer even more options for backup with its latest add-on, Archive. With Archive, MSPs using Continuum BDR are now able to offer a long-term backup and restore option for less time-critical data, all at a low cost. And, because it can be added to any Continuum BDR package (Local, Solo, Complete, or Flex), it can augment new or existing Continuum BDR end user packages in a variety of ways.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Simplifying 3 Trends That Are Changing the IT Landscape

Posted by Meaghan Moraes on April 21, 2017

Simplifying 3 Trends That Are Changing the IT Landscape

Let’s face it, modern IT is complicated. With new components being continuously added to the mix, managing and securing the IT landscape requires new tools fit for the challenge. However, the last thing managed services providers (MSPs) need is yet another disparate management tool that adds more complexity to their services. Without cohesive IT and service level management, there will be serious disconnects—from servers and networks, to storage and end points. 

Amidst the changing tides of technology, MSPs can help their clients ensure IT service and business success with an integrated approach. The following are three growing trends that MSPs should understand how to embrace and capitalize on in order to achieve sustainable profitability and business growth.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, SMB Trends, Mobile Device Management and IT Mobility

Backup to the Future Part IV: How the Cloud Will Continue to Impact BDR Services

Posted by Joseph Tavano on April 12, 2017

Backup to the Future Part IV: How the Cloud Will Continue to Impact BDR ServicesA few years back, everyone was welcoming you to the cloud. Now that we’re all “here,” cloud services are evolving. For MSPs, this affects everything from pricing and packaging BDR products to everyday service delivery. Let’s explore a few ways that the cloud has impacted and will continue to impact BDR for managed IT service providers.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Continuum BDR

Scalability, Cybersecurity & Cloud Services: Three eBooks to Support MSP Growth in 2017

Posted by Brandon Garcin on February 21, 2017

Three-eBooks-to-Support-MSP-Growth-in-2017.pngThe managed IT services industry is constantly changing, and it can be difficult to stay up-to-date on the latest changes, trends and best practices. Today, things like cloud computing, an increasingly-complex cybersecurity landscape and other pressures are forcing MSPs to rethink their approach to service delivery, sales and marketing, and other key aspects of the business.

To help you stay ahead of the curve and set yourself up for success in 2017, we’ve compiled three of our most popular eBooks. Check them out below!

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

GitLab Data Deletion Incident Demonstrates Need for True Business Continuity

Posted by Lily Teplow on February 2, 2017

GitLab Data Deletion Incident Calls for True Business Continuity.png

Have you ever experienced a major un-oh moment? You know, when something goes completely awry and your mind starts to race, palms start to sweat and the classic Homer Simpson “d’oh” echoes in your head. Well, that’s what I imagine recently happened to one of the system administrators at GitLab, a web service for hosting and syncing source code. News broke on Tuesday that GitLab had suffered a major backup restoration failure following an incident of accidental data deletion. According to the tech news site The Register, the incident was caused by an admin who was working late and might have accidentally deleted the wrong folder in a planned maintenance operation.

Whoops! It’s a textbook case of human error that can happen to any business – no matter how technically advanced or experienced. Nevertheless, this unfortunate incident highlights the incredible need to provide true backup and disaster recovery (BDR) to your clients so they don’t become the next headline.

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Topics: Industry News, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Data Loss

How Often Should You Test Your Disaster Recovery Plan? [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on January 13, 2017

How Often Should You Test Your Disaster Recovery Plan chart.png

Are your clients willing to test their luck this Friday the 13th? As a savvy MSP, you know that having an effective backup and disaster recovery (BDR) solution and disaster recovery (DR) plan is a necessity in today’s business landscape – just in case your client opens an umbrella indoors and their whole IT network crashes. However, having these reliable solutions in place is of no value if the processes aren’t regularly tested. So, the question is this: what does your clients’ DR plan look like and when was the last time they had a DR drill test performed?

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, MSP Sales Chart

Who Do You Need on Your Incident Response Team?

Posted by Joseph Tavano on January 5, 2017

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As the calendar switches over to the New Year, many business owners are taking account of their processes and preparing for success in the coming year. But how many are preparing to get hacked in 2017? Security experts are predicting that data breaches will continue to increase in frequency in the coming year, so the answer is: not enough.

Unfortunately, this means that the odds of your clients suffering a data breach are higher than ever. The days of SMBs assuming “it could never happen to me” have passed, and it’s time to have a plan in place to handle a nightmare situation like a data breach. One of the first components of that plan is to build an Incident Response Team.

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Data Loss

IT Security On-the-Go: Your Travel ITinerary

Posted by Mary McCoy on December 29, 2016

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Suitcase: check. Phone charger: check. Boarding pass: check. When traveling, do you make a mental list of everything you need to remember to bring? With any business trip, there's a fair amount of planning involved, whether it's memorizing a conference schedule or booking lodging accommodations. Often, though, travelers forget about IT security, neglecting to properly prepare their devices for departure. 

According to the Kensington IT Security Survey Report, 25 percent of company employees reported IT theft in cars and transportation and more than 15 percent reported devices were stolen from their hotel or at the airport. Are you or your clients practicing unsafe IT habits on-the-go?

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

Is Hard Drive Failure a Reality for SMBs? [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on November 11, 2016

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As an MSP, you understand how crucial business continuity and disaster recovery are for modern businesses. You’ve seen the downtime stats and you’ve dealt with disasters, but what does this look like from your clients’ point of view? Selling backup and disaster recovery (BDR) is a challenge for many MSPs, but it might be because small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) don’t fully understand the need for continuous uptime. If your prospective clients don’t have a business continuity plan in place or take for granted their ability to access data 24x7x365, ask them, “could your businesses survive a disaster?”

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Data Loss, MSP Sales Chart

6 Important OS Hardening Steps to Protect Your Clients

Posted by Hunter Smith on November 9, 2016

6 Important OS Hardening Steps to Protect Your Clients.jpg

According to the 2016 Duo Trusted Access Report, fifty-three percent of Mac OS users are running either the fully patched, latest version of OS X, or the previous version, compared to thirty-five percent of Windows users on Windows 10 and 8.1. That means the majority of these operating systems are outdated.

As you know, proper patch management is critical to protecting client data and uptime, but it's just one of many security considerations. With Ransomware-as-a-Service and Angler, Bedep and Neutrino exploit kit adoption on the rise, MSPs must strengthen client defenses against outside attack. When attempting to compromise a device or network, malicious actors look for any way in. Unbeknownst to many small- and medium-sized businesses, operating system vulnerabilities provide easy access. In order to provide clients with peace of mind, safeguard their sensitive information and differentiate your security services from the competition, here are six ways to harden customers' operating systems: 

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

4 Essentials MSPs Forget When Disaster Recovery Testing

Posted by Mary McCoy on October 26, 2016

4 Essentials MSPs Forget When Disaster Recovery Testing.jpg

By now, most MSPs recognize that offering backup is table stakes. Your clients can receive this service from any number of your competitors. In order to stand out and increase monthly recurring revenue (MRR), focus on the disaster recovery (DR) aspect of backup and disaster recovery (BDR). Offer your clients DR testing!

To fully capitalize on the advantages of DR testing, keep the following four best practices in mind when adding this service to your IT portfolio. 

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Why Small Medical Practices Struggle with HIPAA Compliance [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on October 21, 2016

Why Small Medical Practices Struggle with HIPAA Compliance.jpgDo you serve clients in the healthcare industry? As their MSP, you’re well aware that these organizations have a responsibility to their customers and patients to maintain the security of their data – which means that they must be HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliant. HIPAA has completely changed the way electronic medical and health records are created, received, modified, transmitted or stored, yet many practices still struggle to become and remain HIPAA compliant. Not only do they face exorbitant fines for violating HIPAA law, healthcare companies also can’t afford to lose clients’ trust in their ability to safeguard patient information. So how can your managed IT services help them do just that?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Healthcare IT, MSP Sales Chart

Mirai: The IoT Botnet Malware Behind Recent DDoS Attacks

Posted by Tyler Moffitt on October 18, 2016

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Recently, the source code for the Internet of Things (IoT) botnet malware, Mirai, was released on hack forums. This type of malware was used last month in an historic distributed-denial-of-service (DDoS) attack against KrebsOnSecurity, which was estimated to have sent 650 gigabits per second of traffic from unsecured routers, IP cameras, DVRs and more to shut down the domain. Thanks to DDoS prevention measures by engineers at Akamai, the company protecting Krebs, the attack was unsuccessful; however, they report that this attack was nearly double the size of the largest one they’d previously seen.

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

4 New Encrypting Ransomware Variants to Watch Out for

Posted by Courtney Margossian on October 13, 2016

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Each day, Webroot discovers 6,000 phishing sources, 80,000 new malware and potentially unwanted applications and 51,000 new mobile malware. 

Cyber threats are even more sophisticated than they were last year and as they continue to grow, the business is ever-changing. And I do mean business. With payouts in the thousands of dollars and fewer barriers to entry, cybercrime has become a lucrative opportunity for the masses. Dubbed Ransomware-as-a-Service, there are now portals where anyone can create a ransomware payload for free. No coding or scripting knowledge is required. Instead, you simply have to input your specifications for the amount to charge, ransom payment window, late fee and more. What's the catch? The portal creator gets a cut of the profit you make. Still, the payout is significant and as business ventures like this grow in popularity, ransomware will become increasingly common.

To help protect your clients against the latest attack tactics, Tyler Moffit, Senior Threat Analyst of Webroot recently joined us for the webinar, Crypto Ransomware - The Who, What, Why and How. There were many takeaways from the program, available for download below, including overviews of four new encrypting ransomware variants. 

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

How to Calculate the Cost of Downtime for Your Clients

Posted by Mary McCoy on October 11, 2016

How_to_Calculate_the_Cost_of_Downtime_for_Your_Clients.jpgHow can you help your clients truly understand how downtime hurts their business? For companies today, there is only one universal standard by which they will "get it." That standard is money. The impact on the top and/or bottom line is often the deciding factor in any business decision, including the decision to purchase your business continuity services. As your clients' trusted partner and managed IT services provider (MSP), you're responsible for minimizing service disruptions and unplanned downtime. In order to do this, you first have to help your clients understand exactly what a downtime event can cost their business.

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

How BDR Can Protect SMBs Against Unplanned Data Loss [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on October 7, 2016

Do you struggle with selling your backup and disaster recovery (BDR) solution? If so, you’re not alone. Selling BDR to small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) is a major challenge for many MSPs, especially when you’re overwhelmed with common excuses like “backup isn’t that important,” or “data loss could never happen to me!” So how can you effectively combat these misconceptions and convince potential clients that they need your managed IT services?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, MSP Sales Chart

Mr. Robot is Shining a Light on Cybersecurity

Posted by Joseph Tavano on October 6, 2016

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image: http://www.usanetwork.com/mrrobot/photos

The show creators are paying attention to the IT industry, so it might be time to pay attention to them.

One of the breakout cable TV show hits of 2015, Mr. Robot wrapped up its second season (don’t worry, no spoilers in this article), and has been gaining traction with viewers ever since the show premiered. The show centers on Elliot Alderson, a cybersecurity engineer by day and a hacker by night. The plot has tons of twists and turns, making it easy to binge watch over the course of a rainy weekend.

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

4 Simple Steps to Evaluating Cloud IaaS

Posted by Meg Swanson on October 4, 2016

When you make decisions about extending your infrastructure footprint into the cloud, you do so very intentionally. You hunt down analyst reports, ask peers for recommendations, and seek out quantitative research to compare the seemingly endless array of cloud-based options. But how can you be sure that you’re getting the most relevant information for your business case?

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Continuum BDR

Will You Be Prepared When a Downtime Event Strikes? [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on September 23, 2016

Did you know that 50% of small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) have no backup or disaster recovery plan in place? With all the risks that come with severe data loss and extended downtime, it’s surprising that these people aren’t doing more to safeguard their business. If you have clients or prospects that may be hesitant to invest in a backup and disaster recovery (BDR) solution, use this chart to help make the sale!

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, MSP Sales Chart

How MDM Can Fend off Threats to Endpoint Security [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on September 16, 2016

Mobility is a necessary part of the modern workplace. Mobile devices improve business efficiency and productivity, but they also have the ability to expose and compromise company data. If your client’s endpoints aren’t being protected by a solution like Mobile Device Management (MDM), vulnerabilities have a higher likelihood of being successfully exploited. To determine if clients and prospects are ready to invest in your MDM solution, ask them this: are you fully protected against today’s endpoint security threats?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Information Security, Mobile Device Management and IT Mobility, MSP Sales Chart

Addressing Data Security Threats from Shadow IT

Posted by Franklyn Peart on September 13, 2016

According to IDC, business file sync and share is one of, if not the most popular cloud service with small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). However, this solution often causes shadow IT–related problems and unsanctioned company data access, though it is viewed by businesses as a productivity enabler.

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Navigate 2016

Why SMBs Need to Disaster-Proof Their Business [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on September 2, 2016

Are your clients’ businesses going to be able to operate normally after a disaster strikes? Catastrophes such as floods, employee error and hardware failure can wreak havoc on businesses of all sizes if their data isn’t secured properly – making the recovery process very demanding, time-consuming and expensive. This is especially true for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) who haven’t taken preventative measures and preparations. Without a reliable backup solution or disaster recovery plan, how can your clients ensure that their data is protected from the elements?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, MSP Sales Chart

The Internet of Things and Untapped MSP Opportunities

Posted by Joseph Tavano on August 24, 2016

How can MSPs gain traction in new areas of technology, such as the Internet of Things? Intel's Eric Townsend sits down with Nate Teplow and Joe Tavano to talk about this, the MSP channel, and much more.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Podcast, Internet of Things

Why SMBs Need Business Continuity & Data Management [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on August 19, 2016

Have you and your clients grown numb to statistics showing the amount of digital data being generated in today’s IT landscape? The small-and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) you serve rely on 24x7x365 access to a myriad of data for day-to-day operations, customer understanding and essential business metrics. Due to the abundance of business-critical information, protecting and managing big data has become their top priority. However, many SMBs have not fully connected the dots between developing and implementing business continuity as a data preservation strategy and growing business profitability as a result.

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, MSP Sales Chart

How to Discuss (and Sell) Cloud Services to SMBs

Posted by Joseph Tavano on August 17, 2016

What are SMBs looking for when they say they're interested in cloud services? Chris Rimer of IBM sits down with Nate Teplow and Joe Tavano to discuss this and much more.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Podcast

Why BDR is the Answer to Costly Downtime [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on August 5, 2016

Do your clients know what an hour of downtime could cost their organization? Outages can impact businesses of all shapes and sizes and however major or minor, ultimately lead to downtime – which can be quite costly and potentially destroy a business’ margins and reputation. Without a proper backup solution in place to safeguard their valuable data, businesses risk closing up shop when a disaster strikes.

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, MSP Sales Chart

IT & MSPs: Does It Make Sense to Build It All Yourself?

Posted by George Bardissi on August 4, 2016


When I first started my MSP back in the early 2000’s the “guys” that were really progressive were renting data-center space, installing servers, managing the back-end and providing hosted solutions to their customers – all before the marketing term “cloud” even picked up traction. Back then, not many businesses were willing to go down this road on their own because it was a massive investment of time and capital. Moreover, ongoing labor was needed to make that happen, and many were still concentrated on on-prem solutions.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing, Navigate 2016

Why IT Security Is a Top Concern for SMBs [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on July 29, 2016

Although security is one of the most talked about topics in the IT channel today, there’s a widespread lack of education and awareness in the workplace. Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are welcoming more technology into their everyday environment, but the rapid development of this technology is also accompanied by changes in cybersecurity and Internet threats.

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Information Security, SMB Trends, MSP Sales Chart

Are Your Employees Risking Sensitive Company Data? [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on July 22, 2016

In today’s job landscape, the ability to access work files and email on-the-go has become part of everyday operations. Smartphones and tablets continue to flood the workplace, and your clients’ employees are storing a lot of important data on them. So how can they ensure that the corporate data being accessed through these mobile devices stays secure?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Information Security, Mobile Device Management and IT Mobility, MSP Sales Chart

Data Casualties in Healthcare Cyber Attacks [CHART]

Posted by Mary McCoy on July 15, 2016

Do you have any upcoming, in-person meetings with prospects in the healthcare vertical that you're hoping to close into clients? If so, you're probably working out your plan of attack. Distributing printed collateral is smart, but I recommend you also develop a formal, company-branded presentation that draws your audience in. In developing the content for your deck, keep it as customer-centric as possible. What's going to resonate with the audience you pitch to? What do they need to know in order to understand the value of your managed IT services?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Information Security, Healthcare IT, MSP Sales Chart

HIPAA Business Associate Violation Results in $650K Fine

Posted by Mary McCoy on July 7, 2016

The HIPAA Security Rule is in full effect! The first Business Associate HIPAA penalty made news Tuesday, following a data breach incident two years prior. Who's atoning for this cardinal data sin? The Catholic Health Care Services (CHCS) of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, a nonprofit organization now forced to pay a $650,000 fine. As a business associate legally obligated to adhere to federal regulation, CHCS is being held financially responsible for the breach of six nursing facilities, compromising 412 patients' Protected Health Information (PHI).

While many MSPs are compelled and encouraged to meet the demand for HIPAA compliance by serving the lucrative healthcare vertical, let this ruling serve as a wake-up call that there are costly consequences when MSPs themselves aren't compliant. What led to this unprecedented turn of events, and how can you prevent your MSP practice from suffering the same fate? Here's the Who, What, When, Where, Why and How, our data breach MSP debrief!

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Topics: Industry News, Information Security, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Healthcare IT, Data Loss

Ransomware Meets Healthcare: How We Protect Patient Data

Posted by Jaq Baldwin on July 6, 2016

This month a hacker with the handle "Dark Overlord" has been making news after successfully stealing thousands of healthcare records and holding them for ransom. According to Boing Boing, Dark Overlord was able to acquire 48,000 records from a healthcare organization in Farmington, Missouri; hundreds of thousands from Atlanta, Georgia and the Central/Midwest US as well as nine million patient insurance details. As if that weren't enough, on Tuesday the notorious hacker also stole the information of 34,000 New York healthcare patients. And just what kind of payout is up for grabs for greedy ransomware authors looking to exploit healthcare institutions? Dark Overlord is demanding 750 Bitcoin (or $513,682.50)! So what does this mean for MSPs?

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Topics: Data Protection, HIPAA, Healthcare IT, Continuum BDR

Human Error: The Biggest Risk to Client Data?

Posted by Lily Teplow on June 30, 2016

We all make mistakes. I mean, we’re only human after all. But did you know that according to CompTIA’s Trends in Information Security study, human error actually accounts for 52 percent of security and data breaches? Yikes, looks like being human can be a big cause for concern when it comes to any business’s data security.

Although human error is normal and inevitable in some cases, it can be more of a threat to businesses than most are aware of – including your clients! Backup and disaster recovery (BDR) plays an important role in ensuring that these mistakes don’t turn into serious problems. Read on to discover how you can inform your clients of these threats and protect them against potential data disasters.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Data Loss

MSPs, There's a Better Way to Sell BDR!

Posted by Ron Vaughn on June 29, 2016

Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) is an important business practice that ensures business continuity. Backups are saved copies of data that can be restored in the event of it being tampered with, lost or damaged. Disaster recovery deals with recovering that data after a disaster, like a system failure, fire or power outage. BDR also has virtualization capabilities. In simple terms, it acts as an extra server while the main server is down, allowing businesses to get back up and running with minimal downtime.

Disasters can obviously happen to any person and any business...so why don't people take more action? And, how should you sell your BDR solution to these people?

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Covering Your Webcam and Other Tips to Keep Out RATs

Posted by Yves Dorleans on June 28, 2016

Some people do it during meetings. I do it myself if I don’t want to be seen during a meeting. Even FBI Director James Comey claims that he does it sometimes!

The Internet has been buzzing about the need to cover your webcam and microphones ever since Mark Zuckerberg, whose Twitter and Pinterest accounts were recently breached likely due to poor and weak password complexity security, was spotted with a taped up webcam and microphone jack on his laptop a couple of days ago. This raises the question, are people just paranoid, or is this a best practice to stress to your clients? Is Big Brother watching you? Are there any risks of unauthorized users and intruders gaining access to your webcam and microphone to secretly eavesdrop on unsuspecting users?

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

From the Backup Archives: 5 Must-Read BDR Blog Posts

Posted by Mary McCoy on June 20, 2016

Backup and disaster recovery (BDR) is like life-insurance for a small business. Outages can be costly, and it is up to MSPs to ensure that their clients are protected in case of a data disaster. With cyber threats becoming more and more prevalent, BDR is a front-of-mind issue for MSPs. Side note: that's why we have a whole session devoted to marketing and selling BDR at our annual user conference, Navigate, which kicks off in 100 days!

With the lucrative potential involved with adding business continuity as a revenue stream, what better time for us to head into the Backup Archive and dig out these must-read blog posts on BDR? These articles cover a wide range of topics, including fully-managed BDR solutions, business continuity planning, the advantages of cloud computing and more. So dive in and make sure your clients are doing the most they can to keep their information safe and secure! 

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Topics: Data Protection, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery

How to Tell Clients Google Drive isn't BDR

Posted by Joseph Tavano on June 16, 2016

In just a few short years, services like Google Drive, Dropbox, iCloud and Microsoft OneDrive have changed the way everyday people think about file storage. No longer are devices beholden to carry the burden of being a repository for the totality of one’s digital life. Nowadays, desktops, tablets and mobile phones are vectors, similar to old-style terminals, for accessing your cloud-based digital life.

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

3 Common Backup and Disaster Recovery Objections - and How to Handle Them!

Posted by Brandon Garcin on June 14, 2016

Buying backup and disaster recovery software is a little like buying health insurance; sure, it feels like an unnecessary purchase right now, and nobody’s ever happy about paying monthly premiums. But, just like insurance, everybody neglects backup and disaster recovery or considers it to be a superfluous luxury...until they really need it.

And, let’s face it: if your clients think “This will NEVER happen to me!” the odds are stacked against them. Consider these eye-popping statistics about disaster recovery and business continuity:

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Marketing and Selling Business Continuity: How to Prove Value

Posted by Brandon Garcin on June 9, 2016

Marketing and Selling Business Continuity: How MSPs Can Demonstrate ValueFor organizations across nearly all industries, data is one of today’s most valuable business assets. Businesses and consumers demand 24x7 access to information and applications, regulatory restrictions around data retention are becoming increasingly strict, and the potential risks and penalties associated with any data loss can be severe. The need for effective backup and business continuity planning—particularly in the SMB space—is clear; but that doesn’t mean it’s easy for MSPs to actually sell these services to small businesses.

BDR sales can be difficult, and the technology doesn’t sell itself; without an effective value proposition and marketing strategy, it can be difficult for solution providers to break ground in the market. When bringing a BDR offering to potential customers, there are a number of important things to keep in mind:

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

7 Steps to Avoid a CryptoWall or CryptoLocker Infection

Posted by Hunter Smith on June 9, 2016

The big words in malware these days are CryptoLocker and CryptoWall, the two stalwarts of an emerging group of malware known as “ransomware.” And that term is a very apt categorization of what this type of malicious software does: it literally holds your data and files hostage, demanding ransom payment in order to unlock and regain access to your personal information.

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Topics: Tech Quick Tips, Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

What MSPs Can Learn from the TeamViewer Breach

Posted by Mary McCoy on June 8, 2016

Last week's unsettling discovery of the TeamViewer data breach caused widespread anxiety and public outcry about the remote access tool's network security. While the remote access software company firmly denies any allegations that they were hacked, countless users (including many in the U.K.) flocked to Reddit and other social media sites to report that their accounts had been compromised, giving hackers remote access to their desktops. Although TeamViewer has faced backlash for blaming the breach on careless user behavior, no matter who's to blame in the scenario, this attack highlights the need to teach users stronger password management policies and the importance of a BDR solution. What else can MSPs take away from the TeamViewer breach, and what do users need to know?

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Topics: Industry News, Data Protection, Information Security, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Data Loss

Watch These People Try to Explain the Cloud [VIDEO]

Posted by Brandon Garcin on June 3, 2016

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The cloud can be a mysterious and confusing concept, even for those in tech and IT services. And while there’s no denying the advantages presented by cloud computing, it’s not always easy to actually explain what the cloud is to colleagues, peers or potential customers.

To find out once and for all what the cloud actually is, our own Brody Rhombus hit the streets of Boston and asked people how they define it, how it works and how they’re using it. Not surprisingly, the responses were pretty mixed – and some were pretty hilarious. Tune in now to find out what we learned!

P.S. In reality, these people are no different than your clients and end users. If you're trying to sell cloud-based IT services and solutions, you need to know how to effectively define your offerings and speak their language. If you’re looking for real advice on how to explain cloud computing to your prospects and customers, check out our eBook below.

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Topics: Data Protection, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery, IT Community

The Intangible Costs of Data Breach and Data Loss

Posted by Joseph Tavano on June 2, 2016

The monetary cost of a data breach or data loss, and all the concomitant penalties that arise with it, are substantial and well documented. A single data breach can cripple or close a small business. However, for the smaller percentage that manages to survive, there are also numerous issues to deal with following a data loss event that could lead to significant monetary loss.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Continuum BDR, Data Loss

What Does Ransomware Cost SMBs & What Can You Do?

Posted by Courtney Margossian on June 2, 2016

About 60-70 percent of ransomware is deployed via email phishing schemes, with the remainder largely spread through malicious online downloads  Do you own a computer, iPad or smartphone? Do you have an email address? Then you are a target for ransomware, or a type of malware that locks and compromises files or entire systems unless users pay a ransom. MSPs understand this, but prospects and clients at small-and medium-sized businesses don't necessarily. Maybe they know it's a risk, but they don't think it's one they have to worry about. Have you ever heard people say they're safe because Macs don't get viruses?

In reality, cybercrime is running rampant today, and no one is safe. Ransomware, recently named the biggest cybersecurity threat by Kaspersky Lab's IT Threat Evolution in Q1 2016 report,  can infect individuals, companies, government offices and hospitals that don't enact appropriate security policy and protocol. And the costs are significant! In a recent webinar, George Anderson, Director of Product Marketing at Webroot, led a discussion on the various business consequences to educate clients about, as well as outlined how to prevent and fight ransomware. To learn more, keep reading!

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

Top 3 Questions MSPs Have About HIPAA Compliance

Posted by Hunter Smith on June 1, 2016

HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliance is a complex, but critical issue for many businesses. For many of these businesses who outsource their IT management needs, the onus for ensuring HIPAA compliance falls on these managed services providers (MSPs), like yourself. Your clients in the healthcare industry will likely pepper you with lots of questions and concerns around staying HIPAA compliant and avoiding the costly consequences of a HIPAA violation.

Here are the three most commonly asked questions about HIPAA compliance for MSPs. 

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, HIPAA, Healthcare IT

Why Businesses Need Backup and Disaster Recovery [SlideShare]

Posted by Mary McCoy on May 18, 2016

Are you ready to have the backup and disaster recovery (BDR) discussion with your clients and prospects? Maybe you've already tried to win them over, but haven't had any success. Why is that? More often than not, MSPs fail to sell their BDR and business continuity services because they fail to establish the need within their prospect base. As should be the case with any solution you sell, step one involves knowing who it is you're selling to and identifying what they need to know in order to be convinced.

Does the average small- and medium-sized business (SMB) you target know what BDR is or how it differs from a local backup only solution? Are the business owners you speak to aware of all the possible threats to their company's sensitive data? Do they know what's at stake if their organization experiences data loss or a breach? Probably not, yet this information all speaks to the value of your BDR solution. So to help you out, we've created this explanatory SlideShare, sharing useful messages and statistics to leverage in your next BDR sale.

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Topics: Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery

4 Need-to-Know Ransomware Trends & Findings

Posted by Mary McCoy on May 12, 2016

Ransomware is everywhere right now. Whether it's in the news coverage of latest exploits or in that seemingly harmless attachment sitting in your inbox, malware is running rampant! But beyond the ransomware basics like "email phishing is a major threat vector" and "cybercriminals demand Bitcoin to unlock files," what else do you need to know? What malicious trends are on the rise and how do they impact the way you position your data security services to prospects and clients? We've scoured the Web (well, not the Dark Web) to deliver the latest cybersecurity and ransomware findings!

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Data Loss

Managed IT & Cloud Services Marketing: Navigating the Buyer's Journey

Posted by Todd Hussey on April 22, 2016

Now that you have transformed your premise-based IT solutions to the cloud, and your product-focused business to a recurring revenue services model, there is one more transformation you must make. You must transform your marketing approach in order to attract and engage new prospective buyers of your cloud services.

To compete effectively in the age of digital marketing, it is vital that you fully leverage your website as a vehicle to find, nurture, qualify and convert new opportunities for your cloud solutions. Your website is a powerful asset that can function as a sales and marketing engine to drive new deals at a very low cost of acquisition - assuming you know a few basic principles of online marketing.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Sales and Marketing, Cloud Computing

3 Ways to Stay Secure When Using the Cloud

Posted by Matt Mainhart on March 30, 2016

Last month, I wrote a blog post about how to better understand the cloud, what it is and what it does. This time, I'm covering how your clients can stay secure once they move to the cloud. Having the ability to connect from anywhere certainly has its advantages, but only if potential security risks are managed and thwarted. Do your clients know how to keep themselves and their company data safe in the cloud? Share these useful tips to help ease their transition and demonstrate your authority as their strategic business advisor!

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Topics: Tech Quick Tips, Cloud Computing, Client Quick Tips

Helping Clients Understand Cloud Computing and Cloud Technology

Posted by Matt Mainhart on February 17, 2016

What is the cloud? Does my data really sit on fluffy white clouds and float above the world? What happens when an airplane drives through my spreadsheet, or a bird gets stuck in my document?

The scope of cloud technology and cloud computing is growing, as is its adoption. Your prospects and clients could be using it right now and not even know it. When working with the right IT services provider, cloud technology helps small-to-medium-sized businesses scale up the IT needs of their companies much faster than setting up new hardware.

But what does this term “cloud” mean to your clients?

We wrote a whole eBook about how to explain the cloud to your clients, but here are four quick tips to help them better understand the role the cloud plays in their workday. Download our white label version at the end to use in your next email send!

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Cloud Computing, Client Quick Tips

What's the Future of the MSP in a Cloud World?

Posted by Geoff McQueen, CEO of Accelo on February 16, 2016

After years of hyperbole and derision, most technology professionals would now agree that the cloud has moved well beyond the hype curve and is now firmly in the heart of the industry - and will, along with mobile, be the dominant force shaping our sector for the foreseeable future.

Just as the likes of Dell eroded the profit margins of VARs in the late 90's and helped create the MSP revolution, the direct-service SaaS model of products like Office365 promises to disrupt the MSP business model in the years to come.

After working with hundreds of MSPs around the world from my base in the heart of tech disruption here in San Francisco, I've identified a number of patterns that smart MSPs are getting out in front of - while none of us have a crystal ball, I hope these are useful for you and your business!

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing

Top 2016 Cloud Computing Predictions Straight from IT Experts

Posted by Mary McCoy on December 21, 2015

Before you hunker down to watch the ball drop with noisemakers (man, those things are annoying) and a bottle of bubbly this New Years Eve, consider that 90% of organizations surveyed in the 2015 State of the Cloud Survey by RightScale are running applications or experimenting with infrastructure-as-a-service. Clearly, cloud computing adoption is on the rise, but what's in store for 2016 and what can MSPs do about it?

Louis Armstrong reminds us of the cloud every year when he croons "I see trees of green, and clouds of white," but we wanted to dive deeper into the cloud discussion. We asked a slew of IT experts what they expected and compiled their answers here!

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Explaining the Advantages of Cloud Computing

Posted by Mary McCoy on December 17, 2015

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So you're trying to get existing or prospective clients to move to the cloud, but they're skeptical and resist. Perhaps they think cloud computing and cloud storage are just some fad that will disappear as fast as it rolled in. Sure, the cloud has become a bit of a buzzword, but that's because those who use it rarely understand what it actually is or does. It's as mystical to them as a unicorn galloping in a forest while pigs fly overhead.

In order to convince more businesses to move to the cloud, you have to convince them of its business value.

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Topics: Information Security, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery

VIDEO: The Great Cloud Debate 2015

Posted by Tim Lewis on November 10, 2015

The presidential primary debate season is well underway with another Republican debate taking place tonight – and while we’re not expecting the candidates to spend too much time focusing on IT, there’s no shortage of tech issues to debate today.

In the spirit of the political season, we’ve put together our own debate around one of today’s leading IT topics – the cloud. Watch below as public, private and hybrid clouds each make their case for why they should be the go-to platform of choice and debate the merits of their respective architectures!

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Topics: Information Security, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Video

Why You Won't Sacrifice Security for Scalability in a Public Cloud

Posted by Mary McCoy on November 3, 2015

Why You Won't Sacrifice Security for Scalability in a Public Cloud

According to Q3 data from Synergy Research Group, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft, IBM and Google "together account for more than half of worldwide cloud infrastructure service revenues." AWS leads the pack of well-established public cloud providers with over 30% of market share. Clearly, the public cloud approach is becoming increasingly popular with MSPs today. Why are more of your peers pivoting to this newer model? These clouds help IT solutions providers scale and grow their businesses. That's the easy sell, but what about security in a public cloud? Is there a trade off? 

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery

How to Evaluate Cloud Hosting Platforms for Your Backups

Posted by Mary McCoy on October 28, 2015

Data is not automatically secure and accessible once it's backed up. I don't need to tell you that. When offering your end users a backup and disaster recovery (BDR) solution, you have to consider which data storage option is optimal. If you're like many MSPs, you know that the future of efficient data storage lies in the cloud, but which kind—public or private? What constitutes a protected environment, and how can IT solutions providers marry data security with scalable data management?

To help you deliver a competitive business continuity offering, we've compiled key requirements you should look for when scoring existing cloud platforms. 

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Continuum BDR

3 Core Cloud Security Considerations for MSPs Who Offer BDR

Posted by Mary McCoy on October 22, 2015

For every action of threat, there should be an equal and opposite reaction of protective countermeasures.

OK, so that's not exactly how Isaac Newton envisioned the application of his third law of motion, but for MSPs, this must ring true. You can't afford to move to the cloud without first understanding that security is of utmost importance when dealing with any client data. Just as the scope of IT will continue to become increasingly complex and intertwined, so too will the threat landscape. Attackers will find new access points to compromise and new ways of gaining access to these entry points, all the while endangering your clients' sensitive data stored in the cloud. That's why your cloud defense strategy must be a proactive, multilayered approach. Bad guys don't think in one dimension, and neither should you.

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Topics: Information Security, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Breaking Down Public and Private Clouds

Posted by Ben Barker on October 20, 2015

Public or private? That is the question. When talking about cloud backup, you need to fully understand the differences between public and private clouds and which makes the most sense for your business. As is the case with many business decisions, there are pros and cons for both options. However, the private cloud is starting to look like an outdated, expensive alternative to the public cloud.

Let's find out why.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Scaling Your Business through Better Security

Posted by Dima Kumets on October 19, 2015

Another Navigate conference in the books...and what a fantastic event it was! In case you missed the three-day event that took place in Las Vegas almost three weeks ago, check out this short recap! As always, we were incredibly excited to see so many of our OpenDNS partners — and meet new ones. While there were many great presentations and talks, I did notice one particular theme I think is most relevant to Continuum MSPs: the focus on growing and scaling your business.

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Topics: Information Security, Cloud Computing, Navigate 2015

Your Solution Roadmap to the Cloud - Advice from Peers

Posted by Lisa Person on October 13, 2015

Changing your business model certainly isn’t easy. Those solution providers who moved to the cloud or added a cloud practice can validate the work and complexity required to do it successfully. Whether they were responding to their clients’ current (and/or future) needs or retooling to improve their own business prospects, the path can be a bumpy one.

Today’s VARs and MSPs have to be increasingly intuitive to survive in a highly competitive business environment where customers have so many choices and so many continually shifting priorities. That’s why cloud practices are so useful today, offering the flexibility providers and their clients need to thrive. Of course, those offerings need to be continually evaluated and adapted to ensure they’re successful.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Navigate 2015

Why Cloud Security Isn't Just an MSP Fad

Posted by Webroot Ghost Blogger on July 14, 2015

Why Cloud Security Isn't Just an MSP Fad Webroot

MSPs accustomed to managing on-premise security solutions take note: your business is moving to the cloud.

Security in the cloud is growing steadily. Gartner Inc. predicts that the cloud-based security services market will grow to $3.1 billion in 2015, up from $2.1 billion last year. The company notes that growth in cloud security will “remain strong.” Market researcher Infonetics affirms that trajectory. The company states that cloud-based security service revenue will expand at a 10.8 percent compound annual growth rate through 2017, when the company projects the market will reach $9.2 billion.

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Topics: Industry News, Cloud Computing, Navigate 2015

The Top 5 MSP Blog Posts of June 2015

Posted by Alicia Lazzaro on July 1, 2015

With June wrapping up, we have a lot to look forward to in the coming summer months: weekends away at the beach, barbeque's that last all day and roasting marshmallows by a campfire. Even though there is a lot of fun to be had in the summer, there is still work to be done and lots of blog posts to be read. Check out some of these highlights from June, including why break-fix services are bad for your business, ways to stay secure online and the most common types of user error and how to prevent them.

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Topics: Cybersecurity and Threat Management, Data Loss, Workforce Optimization and Employee Retention

Which Cloud Based IT Service Is Right for You?: Coach's Corner Episode 9

Posted by Ray Vrabel on June 23, 2015

Bring it in, team. In this latest episode of Continuum Coach's Corner, we're going over the many cloud based IT services you can provide to your clients. Huddle up with me, Coach Raymond Vrabel, Director of Technical Account Management at Continuum, as I give you the lowdown on the various types of cloud service offerings. You're the technology expert, but it's vital that you can explain cloud computing to business professionals and decision makers who aren't necessarily savvy on the topic. As a technology expert, you'll need to advise them on which form of cloud computing is best suited for their needs. Tune in!

 
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Topics: Cloud Computing

Using the Cloud for Scalability: So You Think You’re Secure…

Posted by Adrienne Merrick-Tagore on June 15, 2015

Most MSPs think they are providing their customers with a solid security posture by providing regular patch management, by using antivirus on endpoints, and by using firewalls to secure their customers’ networks. These are all necessary solutions, yes, but they require another layer of protection. Ideally, you’re ahead of the game and using RMM to operationalize your workflow and manage your customers’ IT. But the thing is, you need to proactively manage your security too. Firewalls and antivirus alone don’t cut it anymore.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Navigate 2015, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

MSP Myth Busters: Debunking "The Cloud"

Posted by Christina Hurley on May 26, 2015

Of all the tools in an IT arsenal, none in the past decade has been quite as hyped up or misunderstood by end-clients and non-technical folks as “The Cloud.”

For some, it’s a magical silver bullet solution that is never to be understood but always to be trusted. For others, it’s an unnatural behemoth that has more harmful gaps than the Ozone layer. And still, for some unfortunate souls, it’s an impossibly complicated technology that is somehow negatively impacted during stormy weather. No, seriously.

While you’ll likely never be able to clear up all of the myths that each end-client comes across, here’s a look at some of the most common misunderstandings floating around the world of cloud computing.

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Topics: Information Security, Cloud Computing, Backup and Disaster Recovery

Enable Your MSP Business with a Cloud Data Integration

Posted by Lisa Falcone on May 18, 2015

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“Data are just summaries of thousands of stories – tell a few of those stories to help make the data meaningful.” -Chip & Dan Heath, Authors of Made to Stick

According to Webopedia, “Big data has the potential to help businesses improve operations and make faster, more intelligent decisions.” As MSPs, the success of your clients is dependent on the reliability of your own business data. As you provide services to an array of clients, management and maintenance of all that client data can become a challenge. Keeping records up-to-date, accurate, and reflected across your business is key. That’s why many MSPs are taking interest in a data integration of their cloud softwares to streamline and simplify many of their core functions – and alleviate the need for continuous manual data entry.

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Cloud Computing

How to Increase Profitability & Maintain Your Competitive Edge with Cloud Strategies: MSPtv Episode 42

Posted by Tim Lewis on May 11, 2015

 

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What is your cloud strategy? In this week’s MSPtv episode, we’re joined by Chief Advisor of Clarity Channel Advisors and Navigate 2015 speaker, Jim Lippie. Clarity Channel Advisors helps IT service providers remain relevant when increasingly, large cloud providers are dominating the market and taking revenue opportunities away from MSPs. Learn more about this phenomenon Lippie refers to as the "channel eclipse" and how you should respond. Hint: It's not enough to merely acknowledge the burgeoning cloud market by offering cloud solutions like online backup and Office 365. Reselling alone won't give you a competitive advantage and help you optimize profitability. How then do you proceed? Tune in to learn how to take advantage of the cloud opportunity by formulating effective strategies that ensure your business longevity and success!

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Cloud Computing, Video

4 Ways Microsoft Is Investing in Data Security & Compliance for Office 365

Posted by Mary McCoy on April 27, 2015

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The month of April has seen its fair share of Microsoft announcements. Between Lync Online's transition into Skype for Business and the tech community's first look at Exchange Server 2016, you may have missed or already forgotten about the key product enhancements coming to an Office 365 near you. MSPs can rejoice in the new data security measures the cloud service email provider has on their road map for the remainder of the year.

Because Microsoft understands the need for privacy in a public cloud infrastructure, especially among IT service providers who are held to strict compliance standards, Office 365 will soon be unveiling features geared at increasing administrators' control over their clients' email environments and the safety of their associated data transactions. 

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Topics: Industry News, Information Security, Cloud Computing

Why Should OE Dealers Consider Managed IT Services? MSPtv Episode 38

Posted by Tim Lewis on March 10, 2015

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If you're still on the fence about adding managed IT services to your hardware-centric business, fear no more! The benefits greatly outweigh the disadvantages. However, it's not something you can just jump right into as an Office Equipment (OE) dealer or Telecom provider. The focus of a sales conversation can drastically change depending on who you're talking to. For example, an office manager may have different motives than a system administrator. Matt Hubbell, Senior Account Manager at Continuum, sits down with us to explain how to approach these different types of prospects, why you should consider adding managed IT services to your arsenal, and how to best retain your clients. Tune in! 


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Topics: Cloud Computing, Office Equipment, Video

What is Web-Scale IT and Why Does it Matter to us Mortals?

Posted by Christina Hurley on February 19, 2015

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As if we needed a new buzzword to scratch our heads at, the emergence of the term “Web-scale IT” has many doing just that. Gartner defines web-scale IT as “a pattern of global-class computing that delivers the capabilities of large cloud service providers in an enterprise IT setting.” Oh, now I get it… NOT! 

Basically, Web-scale IT is a term created to describe what titans like Google and Amazon are doing in order to achieve their head-spinning levels of scalability and agility. It’s through a series of new processes, architectures, and practices that these high levels of effectiveness in cloud services are possible. Cloud computing, agile development, DevOps and continuous delivery deployment are a few of the components that come together to form the foundation of the Web-scale IT mindset.

That’s all well and good for the giants of the software industry, but what does it mean for you? To be blunt, what this really amounts to is a new way to handle the same old problems, which simply means higher expectations for us mere mortals.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing

The 3 Choices All MSPs Must Face with the Rise of the Cloud

Posted by Chip Reaves on February 3, 2015

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We know we have to change. That’s part of the deal when you pursue a career or business in IT, you know it will always be changing.

In 2015 though, we face not just change, but choices. In particular, the rise of “The Cloud” is pushing IT Solution Providers to make choices that will define their business for years to come – choices that may determine whether their business will succeed or fail. 

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing

DaaS + Data = Added Value for Your Clients

Posted by James Lippie on January 19, 2015

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I am a big believer that in order to survive and thrive, MSPs must find new ways to add more value to their clients as their current service offerings become commoditized. Service providers have been overlooking a key asset they have had access to since the inception of managed services; their client’s data. By helping your clients collect and analyze the important metrics that affect their business, you add significant value to the relationship and to your client’s operation.

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Cloud Computing

Having Trouble Keeping Up with IT Labor Demands? Cut Costs with the Cloud!

Posted by James Lippie on January 15, 2015

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Many service providers view the cloud as the enemy because it has commoditized many of their revenue drivers. I’m not going to sugar-coat it; it does. But, what cloud-resistant service providers fail to understand is that they can leverage the right cloud offerings to decrease their costs and deliver satisfactory profit margins.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Industry News, Cloud Computing

Attention MSPs, Opportunity Is Knocking. Are You Equipped to Answer?

Posted by James Lippie on January 6, 2015

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Server 2003 will reach end of life in July 2015. Microsoft estimates that there are as many as 30 million instances of Server 2003 still active. In anticipation of this date, many MSPs have been capitalizing on upgrade projects for the last few years, but another important opportunity awaits. The technology landscape has changed dramatically over the last few years and has intensified over the last 12 months. As cloud options have become more cost-effective and reliable, small businesses are now contemplating if this is the right time to move their IT needs to the cloud. Opportunity is knocking!

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing

Are You Prepared for the "Channel Eclipse?" Market Consolidation and the MSP Impact

Posted by James Lippie on December 10, 2014

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Every industry evolves. Companies that prepare prosper, those that don’t perish. Take the office products industry (OPI), which used to be highly fragmented with thousands of independent stationers throughout the country selling supplies to businesses. Then, in 1986, Staples created the office supply superstore. I joined Staples in 2006, twenty years after its inception, they were the biggest, most profitable of the major players including Office Depot, OfficeMax and Corporate Express. In those twenty years, four companies had essentially consolidated an industry. Today, the evolution of the office products industry continues, with Amazon becoming a major threat and talk that Staples should acquire the combination of both Office Depot and OfficeMax.  

By now you’re asking yourself, what does any of this mean to me as a technology service provider? On the surface, not a lot, but look deeper. This is a cautionary tale.

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Topics: Industry News, Cloud Computing

Transforming Your Business for the Cloud: MSPradio Episode 25

Posted by Nate Teplow on October 13, 2014

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There's a lot of talk about the cloud these days. It's obviously a big topic and is changing the IT channel drastically. There's many different theories on what the cloud will become and what the best way is to prepare for it, but ultimately, MSPs must be ready for change and be prepared to take advantage of the opportunities presented.

On this episode of MSPradio, we chat with Tim Brewer, a former MSP owner who now works with MSPs, vendors and technology companies to help them change their business model and leadership strategies. Tim tells us a little about what's going on in the cloud market and how MSPs can be ready for change.

 

Tune in this week and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes.

Android users: Get the Stitcher App and subscribe to our channel

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Podcast

Why Buying Direct From Cloud Providers Doesn’t Make Sense for SMB’s

Posted by Doug O'Flaherty on August 14, 2014

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Your customers are talking about The Cloud. The power of marketing has turned ‘the cloud’ into a bulldozer of a phenomenon that is on the tip of everyone’s tongue. The Cloud promises easy deployment and infinite utility.

As a result, businesses are scrambling to take advantage of this sudden need to be ‘in the cloud’. The big names are well known, and SMB’s are starting to make cloud decisions on their own.

In most cases, SMBs going direct to a large Cloud provider does more harm than good. They increase their business risk, over-pay, and under-deliver. Here’s Why.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Data Protection, Cloud Computing

Managed IT Services Weekly Recap: Week of July 14th

Posted by Mary McCoy on July 19, 2014

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It's that time again. Here is your weekly serving of the hottest stories in the MSP biz! This time, we're sharing IT security vulnerabilities and cloud clickables. Have a comment about one of these headlines? Drop a line in the comments section below! Without further ado, may we present your MSP weekly digest...

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability, Information Security, Cloud Computing

Managed IT Services Weekly Recap: July 7th

Posted by Mary McCoy on July 12, 2014

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It's that time again. Here is your weekly serving of the hottest stories in the MSP biz! This time, we're sharing market trends and managed IT services best practices among other notable topics. Have a comment about one of these headlines? Drop a line in the comments section below! Without further ado, may we present your MSP weekly digest...

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability, Information Security, Cloud Computing

An In-Depth Look at the Cloud

Posted by Tim Lewis on July 11, 2014

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If your haven't made the decision to offer Cloud services to your clients yet, now is the perfect time. The Cloud gives you and your clients a chance to streamline your operations, leaving room for you to expand your MSP business. Still having second thoughts? Take a look at this week's episode of MSPtv, where we speak with the CEO and President of Commercial IT Solutions, Niklas Rosen. Watch as Nicklas gives us an in-depth look at this growing business, explaining everything from the very definition of "Cloud" to the future of the Cloud services.

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Topics: Cloud Computing, Video

MSPtv Episode 25: Increasing Your MSP's Visibility Online

Posted by Tim Lewis on July 3, 2014

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What is the most used search engine? If you guessed Google, you'd be correct. The second most used? Surprisingly, YouTube! If your MSP isn't taking advantage of this lucrative SEO potential, now's the perfect time to jump on the bandwagon. In this week's episode of MSPtv, we join Aaron Booker of Varvid to discuss how having a video presence in addition to a website presence can significantly increase your business's online visibility and exposure to potential new leads.
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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Sales and Marketing, Cloud Computing, Video

7 Reasons to Move Your IT Services to the Cloud [Slideshare]

Posted by Mary McCoy on June 29, 2014

Cloud IT Services

Cloud computing is undeniably one of the most talked about topics in business technology circles today. Nearly all small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) have heard that the cloud is transforming the way their peers do business, and most have been inundated with talk of how the cloud enables smaller organizations to cut IT costs and improve operational efficiency. Still unsure if a cloud computing initiative is a smart move for your business? 

Here are the 7 Reasons to Move to the Cloud…

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Topics: Cloud Computing

Managed IT Services Weekly Recap: June 30th

Posted by Mary McCoy on June 28, 2014

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Happy 4th of July weekend all! While you dig into barbecue leftovers, enjoy this serving of MSP stories and blog posts! Think we missed a notable headline? Drop a line in the comments section below! Without further ado, may we present your MSP weekly digest...

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Topics: Industry News, Tech Quick Tips, Information Security, Cloud Computing

MSPtv Episode 23: Professional Tips from SMBNation's Harry Brelsford

Posted by Tim Lewis on June 20, 2014

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With a new era of technology upon us, it's an exciting time to be an MSP! Gone are the days of on-premise equipment and Windows XP operating systems. The Cloud will soon help store and manage your data, leaving you to focus on your priority: the customer. Making this transition to mobility and security will only help your business. In this week's episode of MSPtv, SMBNation's Harry Brelsford provides insight on the future of MSPs and what everyone can do to continue improving their business.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Cloud Computing, Video

Can't-Miss Highlights from Autotask's Community Live! Event

Posted by Mary McCoy on June 17, 2014

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Last week, we sponsored and attended Autotask's annual Community Live! conference in Miami, Florida. Were you unable to keep up with our Twitter coverage of the event? No worries! We've compiled a "Tweetstory" for you.

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Topics: Business Development and Growth, Revenue Growth and Profitability, Industry News, Cloud Computing

Congrats to Dee Zepf, Named to 2014 CRN Women of the Channel List

Posted by Mary McCoy on June 9, 2014

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As leader of the Product team at Continuum Managed IT Services, Dee touches almost all of our partners. Last week, she was named to the 2014 CRN Women of the Channel list. The annual list highlights the accomplishments of female executives within vendor, distribution and solution provider organizations, and the impact they are having on the advancement of the IT channel industry as a whole. Dee was also recognized by CRN for the same award in 2013, as well as a 2014 Channel Chief.

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Topics: Industry News, Cloud Computing

The Top 5 Blog Posts of April

Posted by Nate Teplow on May 1, 2014

It's Nate here, your friendly Continuum blog manager. We've had some great blogs this month, and I wanted to recap them for you in one post. From vocab tests, to statistics and important business strategies, we covered a lot this past month, and had contributors both inside and out of Continuum.

Here are our top 5 blog posts from the month of April!

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Topics: Revenue Growth and Profitability, Industry News, Cloud Computing

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