VTS IT and Telstra: Your Cloud, Your Way

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Your gateway to a hybrid cloud

Simply and securely connect to multiple cloud environments – all from one place.

Cloud Gateway and insights from Jeremy Howe

Build flexibility in your cloud

Cloud Gateway provides you with private and dedicated connectivity to multiple cloud platforms. You’ll also benefit from our end-to-end service including data carriage, configuration and support.

It enables you to enjoy simple access to your chosen cloud platforms – with improved security and application performance.

Secure and reliable private connection
Easily access your chosen cloud platforms with a network that you can rely on. Our Next IP network can give you improved security and application performance.

When you’re accessing and managing public and hybrid cloud environments, you’re presented with a range of challenges. You need to consider the reliability and security issues of public internet – while managing multiple vendors, portals and contracts. At the same time, you need to aim for high levels of performance and operational efficiency.

By deploying different cloud platforms, you can enjoy a number of business benefits. And with Cloud Gateway, you’ll have reliable, private and secure connectivity across them all – plus the ability to manage bandwidth across those platforms.

By bringing cloud and network together, Cloud Gateway gives you the tools to truly embrace rapid and dynamic test and learn environments. It also enables you to bring new products or services to market faster, through public and private clouds.

The Telstra Advantage

Simplifying Hybrid Cloud

Your gateway to multiple clouds

Fast and scalable private connection to one or more of your cloud providers via a single point of contact and with 24×7 support.

Secure and reliable private connection

Easily access your chosen cloud platforms with a network that you can rely on.

Our Next IP, Ethernet and Optical connectivity options give you improved security and application performance.

Flexible and integrated solution

Cloud Gateway lets you take advantage of the flexibility and scalability of a hybrid cloud strategy. Maximise flexibility with a choice of secure and reliable network-integrated cloud services – via a single service management experience.

How Cloud Gateway works


 

 

Making it easy to move to cloud

Cloud Gateway offers you a simple way to connect to, and manage bandwidth across your chosen cloud platforms, providing flexibility and scale to suit your business needs. And by using a private connection versus public internet, you benefit from greatly enhanced application performance. Not to mention superior security, thanks to our enterprise-grade solution.

For any more info, please give us a call on 1300 830 887, and let us help you move to the Telstra Cloud.

A Mid Year Update from VTS IT

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2016, what a year it has been so far! VTS is surging ahead with our two key focuses.

No. 1 – Managed Services. You have heard about it before and as the market turns to op ex and outsourcing more and more, VTS finds itself fielding a huge surge in interest around the country. Customers are trying to navigate what has been a quick change from on premise server based computing to cloud services. If you haven not figured out “Why Cloud” yet, below are a few key reasons you should be looking:

No.2 – Telstra. VTS has become one of the top 5 Telstra Business Partners in Qld and NSW due to a growing relationship with Telstra Account Executives around the country. We spend much of our time working with Telstra clients, assisting them with cloud migrations, site audits, network recommendations and project management. It has become a strong part of our work and something we are building on every day. Telstra as a business has transformed from a Telco to a Major ICT business leveraging partners like VTS IT to consult and deliver services. We have a team of Telstra Experts on staff at VTS IT to assist you and ensure you are getting the best bang for your buck with the dollars you are spending.

Cloud Tips

Work Load Migration – Many clients are looking to move some workloads off their servers to get more life out of their hardware investments. Less load = More Life. Moving your email to Office 365 as an example provides a fairly risk free way to move some of your world to the cloud and start to understand what it might mean for the rest of your applications.

Hardware Refresh – I am not sure I have had a conversation with a client in the last 12 months that did not include some form of migration to the cloud with most saying that they can’t see that they would need to refresh their hardware ever again. For those that do choose to stay with onsite hardware or need to keep some hardware on site, servers are so much more capable than they were three years ago, that what required 4 servers can in many cases consolidate down to one with back-up and disaster recovery services being offered from a number of vendors to do this for you over the wire. This is a huge cost saving for the end user!

Application Migration – Many clients are looking to try and move more applications to the cloud but in some cases this means that they need to review what is on offer in the market. Many legacy applications are not offering cloud or hosted options so clients are looking to move to those that do. Why would you have an application that is bound to onsite server hardware that requires maintenance when you can offload that function to a cloud provider? Accounting software vendors in most cases offer an on premise and a cloud version.

Working to migrate your business to applications hosted by a vendor offers additional benefits such as Opp Ex based costs but also a much more flexible work environment for your staff. If you can access your information from a website then you can effectively work anywhere. Now you can look further afield for staff and resources to join your teams.

Don’t stop at the applications. Telephony has become part of this with PABX style systems becoming less appealing to the market with many looking to hosted voice platforms. My extension is on my personal device and that allows me to take calls anytime I make myself available. Any time, City , State or Country. Most of the advance functionality of call groups, queuing and call centre functionality is still there. It is just hosted giving you far more flexibility than ever!

So how do you get there? Well that is where we come in. Our Managed Clients enjoy full access to our team to help guide and advise them. In many cases the products we recommend do not come from VTS so our interest in the products we select are with you in mind, not the margin we make. Feel free to give us a call to see how we might be able to assist you in this process.

BUT, there is a word of caution. With all these savings you need to consider how you connect. Public internet connections are just not up to task. Yes it might work but it is based on how many other people are using the contended service. Before you jump, consider business grade services that have service level agreements and “Up Time” statistics that are what you require as a business.

 

For more information, give me a call on 1300 830 887, and find out what we can do for you🙂

Ian Hurley

National Sales Manager

13 must-take steps to combat physical and digital theft while traveling

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By Rieva Lesonsky, President and Founder of GrowBiz Media

Whether you’re traveling for business or leisure this summer, chances are that as a small business owner, you’ll be working on your trip. But with unsecured Wi-Fi hotspots and the potential for physical theft, among other risks, there are several steps you need to take to ensure security issues don’t interrupt your productivity.

Use these tips to keep your devices and data safe on the road.

Before you go

  1. Back up your devices before you leave, and make sure current, updated security software is installed—including on your phone and tablet.
  2. Ensure your current data and documents are stored securely in the cloud so that you can access your files from a borrowed device or computer even if you lose your laptop or tablet.
  3. Set up features that enable remotely locking and wiping devices in case they’re lost or stolen.
  4. Secure all your devices with a password or PIN. You may not use a password to log in to your laptop every day at work, but on the road this additional step adds a layer of protection.
  5. Encrypt your mobile devices (go to settings/security).
  6. Set up a virtual private network (VPN) at work that you can use on the road to connect to the Internet. The VPN encrypts everything you do online, protecting your data and devices.
  7. Bring only what you really need. You probably don’t need both a laptop and a tablet. The more you bring, the greater your risk for physical and digital theft.

On the road

  1. Keep your eyes—or your hands—on your device at all times. It sounds paranoid, but physical theft is as big a risk as data theft. Never leave your laptop, phone, or tablet lying around, even for a moment. The cafés, coffeehouses, airports, and hotel lobbies that travelers frequent are home to pickpockets and thieves waiting for someone to get distracted. When leaving your hotel room, put electronics you’re not taking in the in-room safe.
  2. Turn off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth when you’re not using your devices to prevent them from accidentally connecting to a cybercrook’s network.
  3. Stay off public computers. If you must, assume everything you do is being watched, so don’t input any sensitive information or connect to your business network.
  4. Avoid public wireless hotspots. If you must use this type of network, never buy anything, connect to your business network, or input passwords.
  5. If you don’t have VPN, Use secure browsing, which you can set up within the “preferences” of your Internet browser. (You’ll know you are browsing securely if the URL of the webpage you’re on starts with HTTPS instead of HTTP.)
  6. Look under “settings” on your smartphone to see if your phone enables setting up a private mobile hotspot. Most newer phones offer this feature, which provides added security.

Take these precautions before it’s too late—it’s expensive and potentially damaging to business if you learn the lesson the hard way. Even if you can’t take every one of these steps, each one you do take increases your chances of keeping your business information safer while you’re on the road.

This post originally appeared at http://blogs.microsoft.com/work/2015/06/26/13-must-take-steps-to-combat-physical-and-digital-theft-while-traveling/

Top 3 reasons your AV isn’t stopping fastbreak phishing and other spam – from our partners at Mailguard

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Your antivirus software can’t always stop fastbreak phishing and other spam attacks like Cryptolocker.

Many Australian businesses rely on desktop antivirus software and security appliances to protect them from email that contains a nasty malware. Some are adding cloud security services to the mix in an effort to bolster their defences.

IT managers may feel this is enough to protect the business, but if the business is still receiving fastbreak, phishing and other spam containing malware such as Cryptolocker, they need to reassess their defences.

MailGuard CEO Craig McDonald says “Cyber criminals use a variety of methods to infiltrate businesses. Phishing scams – emails that look legitimate but bait recipients – use deception and social engineering to trick users.”

These emails, text messages or website links may appear to originate from companies that the victim may know.

Phishing affects businesses by stealing personal information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details.

Malware includes computer viruses, worms, ransomware and Trojan horses that are specifically designed to disrupt, damage or gain control of computer system or data.

Fastbreak or zero-day spam is a major problem for businesses. A zero-day threat is a previously unseen malware variant that antivirus software vendors do not yet have defenses against.

What is Cryptolocker?

Cryptolocker and Cryptowall are types of ransomware that typically enter through a phishing email. The recipient is then tricked into clicking a link within the email.

The link takes someone to a forgery of a legitimate web service and tricks the user into downloading damaging applications such as Cryptolocker. Once executed, Cryptolocker then encrypts and locks individual files before demanding a ransom in order to have files decrypted.

Here are some examples of recent Cryptolocker zero-day email scams which have successfully tricked thousands of users into downloading ransomware:

The Australian Federal Police Are The Latest Target In Another Cryptolocker Scam

It is the responsibility of the Australian Federal Police (AFP) to protect us from crime. How ironic that in the latest fastbreak Cryptolocker email scam, cyber criminals have adopted the identity of the AFP and are using it to trick unsuspecting recipients into paying them money. (Read more here…)

Russian Cyber Criminals Target Australians Again With Cryptolocker Virus

Just when you thought it was over! Cyber gangs based in Russia are targeting Australians again after a couple months of peace for us down under. These criminals have been focusing on targeting USA and Europe most recently. (Read more here…)

Antivirus software isn’t entirely effective at blocking spam containing malware such as Cryptolocker. While malware attached to an email can usually be stopped effectively using standard antivirus software, it’s less effective at blocking spam that directs the user to a malicious website using a link.

Let’s take a closer look at the 3 core reasons why businesses are still receiving fastbreak spam containing phishing and other malware such as Cryptolocker.

1. Cyber Criminals Have Access To The Same Defences You Do

Cryptolocker pictureAntivirus software can stop spam and defend against spam containing malware. However, it works by comparing the malware to previously seen or known malware. Cyber criminals know this. They are using the same tools to test whether their new spam or malware variant can penetrate antivirus software defences.

Although AV vendors try to respond as quickly as possible to new variants, hundreds if not thousands of scam emails containing malware or links to malware make their way into inboxes around the globe.

2. AV Can’t Keep Up With The Window Of Time Vulnerability

As an IT manager, you are responsible for ensuring your antivirus software is constantly updated to ensure the greatest chance of being protected from cyber attacks. But there is a window of time from when a new variant is detected, to when the AV vendor discovers it, and releases an update that is deployed to the end user.

During this window, the business can be vulnerable to a fastbreak malware or phishing attack.

By implementing cloud antivirus protection such as email and web filtering, businesses have access to security software that is updated automatically and in real-time. This closes the time window of vulnerability and removes the burden of updating software. This is why security software vendors are continuing to acquire cloud security firms to augment or complement their software and security appliances.

MailGuard Fastbreak Zero Day Timeline

3. AV Vendors Are Limited To Their Own IP

Businesses understand the risks from fastbreak spam containing zero-day malware so many employ both on-premise and cloud protection for their network security. If the cloud security solution is delivered by the same vendor as the on-premise security, your business is relying on the intelligence of one company to identify and protect against the new fastbreak variant.

Cloud and Desktop with Same AV Vendor crossed outWorking with just one vendor alone makes security weaker than using two or more independent vendors. Today’s threat landscape means you need to defend against motivated and resourceful adversaries that have access to the same defensive tools and strategies you have. But using a multipronged solution that takes advantage of the cloud where software is constantly updated and employs several different security tools can overcome these adversaries.

Australian business face different threats to overseas businesses. Vendors that are focused on attacks that are targeted at Australian business are more successful at blocking these targeted threats. Many overseas security software vendors consider the Australian market too small to focus on. However criminals are specifically targeting Australia and Australian business clients.

Give Your Business A Fighting Chance

Specialist cloud security vendors should come with a team of dedicated cloud security experts who scour the net constantly seeking out and blocking new threats as they emerge, and not relying of technology scanning alone.

It may be difficult to outsmart cyber criminals but by complementing your antivirus with cloud, or layering specialised services that are much faster at detecting fastbreak scams, you can give your business a head start against cyber criminals.

If you would like to discuss the ways you can significantly decrease the risk from fastbreak phishing and other spam containing malware affecting your business, you can book a FREE consultation with a MailGuard cloud security expert by emailing expert@mailguard.com.au, give us a call on 1300 830 887. If you’d like more information, please download the fact sheet below:

Why use Cloud Email Filtering?

This article originally appeared on the Mailguard Blog

Cryptolocker Ransomware Warning

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It has come to our attention that some businesses in our region have been infected with a variant of ‘Cryptolocker’. This is a Ransomware computer virus that effectively locks down your data until you pay the hackers to release it. If you do not pay, your data is corrupted beyond repair and the only option is to restore from backups.

This variant is coming as an E-mail, which purports to be a notification of a traffic infringement fine from the Australian Federal Police:

Australian-Federal-Police-Cryptolocker-Email

It asks the user to click on the link within the email, which will take them to view their infringement notice.  This is not a real infringement notice. It will take you to a download page for a .zip file, similar to this:

Australian-Federal-Police-Cryptolocker-Fake-Website

This .zip file will, when opened, download malicious software to your machine.

While it appears to be a legitimate site and notice, the AFP have advised that traffic infringement notices will never be sent via email.

It is important to advise your users not to open attachments in any email they think could be suspicious, and if in doubt consult a colleague or the IT team.

For more information on this specific variant, please go to: http://www.mailguard.com.au/blog/the-australian-federal-police-are-the-latest-target-in-another-cryptolocker-scam/

We also advise that you do not click links within emails that:

  •  Are not addressed to you by name or have poor English
  • Are from businesses or users that you were not expecting to hear from
  • Ask you to open any .zip or .exe files, unless you are expressly waiting on those file types.

For information or advice, please phone our Helpdesk on 1300 887 229, or visit our Mailguard Partners at http://www.mailguard.com.au.

Compete Big with HP’s Just Right IT

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Compete big – at any size

The right IT for your top 4 business priorities

Stay in front of a fast-moving marketplace. Use the right IT to master the dynamics of your business and drive winning outcomes for SMB.

VTS is hiring!

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The VTS IT Group is seeking Business Development Managers and Sales Support staff.

We are looking for an experienced communications BDM, an experienced BDM, and a sales support officer to join our team.

We offer ICT Managed Services, Managed hardware and software, and specialised solutions nationally to corporate commercial, educational and government clients. Part of our offering includes specialised sales across the entire Telstra portfolio.

The successful candidates will be based in SE QLD (Toowoomba) and have the following:

  • The ability to work autonomously and as part of a team
  • Skills in sales administration, proposal building, CRM, account planning and details
  • The desire to network with the business community and actively seek new opportunities.

For more info, click the links:

Business Development Manager Info

Communications Business Development Manager Info

Sales Support Info

 
Join a growing business with a fantastic offering to market. Take the next step in your sales career.
Contact Ian Hurley, National Sales Manager at ian.hurley@vtsit.com.au