Technology Advisor Blog

What's the difference between Internet providers?

Posted by Ann Westerheim on 1/22/18 12:44 PM

Internet Speed.jpgWe're often asked about the different options available for Internet access.  You may be moving your office, or perhaps you need an upgrade in speed and reliability because you're going with a VoIP phone system.  You may also have moved to a cloud-based mission critical business application and you want a secondary connection for redundancy.  

Typically the speed of the connection is the most obvious factor, but there is more to consider.

General technology options:

  1. Low cost "best efforts" services.  These are business services which are slightly better than the home services, but essentially using the same technologies as offered to homes, but a good fit when low cost is higher priority than reliability, uptime, and high priority service restoration.
    • These services include Comcast “Business Class”, Verizon FIOS, all DSL services.  Generally these services are attractively priced, provide pretty good uptime, but service interruptions can and do occur.  Comcast business does have outages that can be hours, and if you have an interruption on say a Friday night, you might not get service restored until sometime on the next business day (possibly not until later in the day).  Verizon FIOS is excellent, but even so, we have seen rare situations where service was down for days.
  2. High reliability/ fast response/ high priority services.  These are services intended for customers for whom uptime, high reliability, and service responsiveness are of paramount importance.  These types of services require what they call "5 nines" reliability ( 99.999% ) uptime.
    • Examples of such services include traditional T1 circuits, and now Lighttower, and Comcast Enterprise fiber products.
    • These solutions are provided as a result of better quality equipment, redundancy, better monitoring of circuits, quick failover, and adequate staffing, better training, and also high priority of service response.
    • These services have what is called a Service Level Agreement (SLA) which provides guarantees of reliability and fast service restoration.
    • You pay a premium for this, but the benefit is uptime is virtually guaranteed, and outages are in minutes per year rather than frequently hours or possibly days of outage in a year.

We advise planning weeks in advance to change or add an Internet provider.  Also consider that many office locations don't have all the options you may be expecting.  Before considering new office space, make sure you can get the connectivity you want at a price that fits your budget.  Also, even if you aren't planning any business changes, if its been years since you last made a change, you may be pleasantly surpised to get a lot more performance for even less cost than you're paying now, so explore your options.

Tags: Internet Outage

10 Ransomware Statistics ALL Businesses MUST Know

Posted by Ann Westerheim on 1/2/18 1:56 PM

10 Ransomware Statistics.jpgIt's a new year, and a great time to evaluate what's working well in your business and what could be better.  If you don't have a robust Cybersecurity plan in place for your business, now is the time to get started.   

Today's Cybersecurity experts blame a lack of training world wide as part of the epidemic.  Someone in your business will click on just about anything.  Do you have a training program in place?  The MA Data Security Law, HIPAA, and other Industry specific regulations require ongoing employee training, but most small businesses haven't put a plan in place.  Phish your employees to train them so they don't get phished by the bad actors.  These days, cyber threats are automated, and no business is "under the radar".  

Step one:  Get the facts by downloading the report.  10 Ransomware Statistics All Businesses MUST Know

Less than one third of all ransomware cases are reported to authorities.  Ekaru offers a full range of technical solutions to help secure businesses, but the human factor is often overlooked.  An important and affordable way to help prevent attacks is to stop them before they happen with employee training.

Ready to sign up for training?  Sign up for Training


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