Windows 7 End Of Mainstream Support (Questions/Answers)

Microsoft announced they are stopping mainstream support for Windows 7. This is a popular operating system, so this creates concern for many. All support for Windows 7 will end on January 14, 2020.

What Does Support Ending Mean?

This means that you won’t get bug fixes or security updates from Microsoft. Over time, the security and reliability of Windows 7 will make your computers vulnerable:

  • Your computers could be infected by malware,
  • Your antivirus won’t be updated,
  • Your online banking transaction protection may expire, and
  • Your financial data could be exposed to theft.

Does This Mean Windows 7 Won’t Be Reliable?

Yes – your applications may not be updated, your other software could be incompatible, utilities won’t be supported, and new devices may not connect to your system.

Computer manufacturers will no longer support Windows 7. This means things like printers, desktops, laptops and more won’t be guaranteed to work as they should. Your security programs and third-party browsers won’t support Windows 7. When you browse the Web, you could be exposed to cyber threats. All of this will take place over time.

Should You Purchase A New Computer?

It’s not too early to upgrade to Windows 10. Just be sure that your hardware will support it. If you’re using Windows 7, getting a new device with the Windows 10 operating system is recommended. Today’s computers are faster, more powerful and durable.

Newer computers also have longer battery life and provide increased security. Modern computers are typically less expensive than they were 8 years ago. The total cost of ownership studies concludes that it’s wise to replace your computers at least every four years.

What Are The Benefits Of Upgrading From Windows 7 To Windows 10?

Upgrading from Windows 7 to 10:

  • Makes computers run smoother and faster.
  • Provides a more economical use of memory and disk space.
  • Improves security.
  • Boots up your computer from sleep mode faster than before.
  • Provides many other benefits.

You can also benefit from features that Windows 7 doesn’t provide:

  • Use Cortana – a personal assistant that runs on artificial intelligence (AI).
  • Search the Web right from your desktop.
  • Get reminders based on time, places, or people.
  • Quickly add a virtual desktop.
  • With Windows Apps new applications are available on all of your devices.
  • A brand new browser – Edge – that’s better suited to the modern web.
  • Track packages, teams, interests, and flights.
  • Create and manage lists.
  • Chit chat and play games.
  • Find facts, files, places, and info fast.
  • Open any app on your system.

With Windows 10’s new application programming interface called Windows RunTime, your Windows Store Apps are remotely installed and updated. They can also be cleanly uninstalled.

There are RunTime apps for Mail, Photos, Maps, Calendar, Groove Music and more. And you can easily download any of the 700,000 applications from the Windows Store.

How Long Will It Take To Upgrade To Windows 10?

This depends on the age of your computer and how it’s configured. It should only take an hour to do after you’ve downloaded the operating system. New devices upgrade much faster. This is another reason to consider a new computer if it’s 4 years old or older.

Do You Have More Questions About Upgrading To Windows 10?

Every Windows operating system has a lifecycle. Alltek Services will keep you updated on important lifecycle dates. We can help you make informed decisions about when to update, upgrade or make other changes to your software or hardware.

Contact us today at {phone} or send us an email at {email}.

Microsoft announced they are stopping mainstream support for Windows 7. This is a popular operating system, so this creates concern for many. All support for Windows 7 will end on January 14, 2020.

Is Microsoft Office 365 The Right Choice For Your Central Florida Business?

Microsoft Office 365 Florida

Microsoft Office 365 is a powerful choice for businesses that want to leverage familiar productivity apps and take advantage of collaboration features. The cloud-based program suite gives your business access to more functionality and helps your employees be more efficient, productive and effective.

Many Hillsborough County and Polk County businesses turn to Alltek Services to configure, manage, monitor and maximize Microsoft Office 365. In 2019, Microsoft Office 365, and other cloud-based Microsoft tools can give your business the competitive advantage it needs to stand out.

How Does Microsoft Office 365 Work?

Microsoft Office 365 Business is a web-based tool that provides online access to all the familiar Microsoft Office apps, including:

  • Word (word processing)
  • Excel (spreadsheets)
  • PowerPoint (presentations)
  • Outlook (email)
  • OneNote (note-taking)
  • OneDrive (file hosting and synchronization with 1 TB of storage)
  • Access (database management, for PCs only)

With the Premium package option, users gain access to more applications and tools, including:

  • Exchange (mail server and calendaring management)
  • SharePoint (website building tool to share, organize, store and access information)
  • Teams (a relatively new product for collaboration, meetings, chat and communication)
  • Planner (task and teamwork management)
  • Invoicing, booking and business intelligence tools
  • Customer relationship management functions

How Does a Business Implement Microsoft Office 365?

Working with a proven, established technology partner like Alltek Services lets you quickly migrate from an in-house solution to Microsoft Office 365. Our experienced engineers and technicians coordinate your migration and manage the application for you in the cloud. Our teams manage licensing, security monitoring, updates and users remotely, letting your employees focus on core business objectives.

We develop a streamlined migration plan that minimizes disruptions and downtime for your business, employees and customers. You’ll be up and running with email, documents and communications tools that are fast, reliable and accessible from any browser on any device. For employees traveling, working remotely or hired as freelancers, your teams can access information and collaborate on projects easily.

Our Office 365 experts are ready to assist your users with all the features, benefits and advantages that make a migration an important investment.

What Is Microsoft Teams?

Launched in 2017, Microsoft Teams combines functions for teams to communicate, collaborate and work together better via shared tools and information. It includes the Skype for Business functions that Microsoft had previously offered.

Teams allows for team chat, better connections among team members and more productivity. It’s designed especially for teams with employees at different locations and freelancers. With its group chat rooms, team members can engage in threaded conversations and access shared content stored in OneDrive, all without leaving the app. Team members can review and edit documents together. And if they decide they need to talk things over, they can switch to a video call with the push of a button.

Teams has some overlapping functionality with other Microsoft apps, such as Yammer, Outlook and SharePoint, but is very effective for smaller teams that need to interact frequently. The Teams functionality is accessible via browser, desktop app or mobile app.

There are four key components:

  • Channels. Create different channels for each project a team is working on. Every channel has its own email address. When you email the address, it creates a new team conversation.
  • Tabs. Configure team projects with the tools or services the team regularly uses.
  • Connectors. Access services like PowerPoint or Excel without leaving the Teams application.
  • Chatbots. Want to automate simple work like meeting scheduling or team updates? Chatbots gather necessary information and complete basic tasks.

Are There Any Recent New Features to Microsoft Office 365?

One of the advantages of subscribing to Microsoft Office 365 is that updates and new features are automatically made available without the need for cumbersome downloads, patches or new purchases. Microsoft regularly updates its applications to add new functionality and improve performance. Here are a few of the improvements added in early 2019:

  • A new Outlook calendar function that lets users build in travel time (5-10 minutes) by default between meetings
  • An Ideas button in Excel that looks for patterns in your data and makes personalized suggestions and visualizations
  • Transform a Word document from a static element to a shareable web page

Generally, Microsoft adds new features every month to some of its Office 365 products.

I’m Not Sure Our Small Business Needs All Those Features. Are There Other Options?

Microsoft offers a cloud-based subscription service very similar to Office 365 designed especially for smaller operations. Microsoft Office ProPlus gives your company licenses for 5 PCs, 5 tablets and 5 smartphones. It provides desktop, web and mobile versions of the four most popular Office tools — Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook — and the 1 TB of storage. It’s a great option for smaller businesses who want a predictable monthly software expense and global connectivity.

How Does Microsoft Office 365 Manage Email Accounts?

Microsoft Office 365 business versions come with Microsoft Exchange Online, which offers full administrative capabilities, including:

  • Anti-spam and anti-malware mailbox filtering
  • Permissions management
  • Compliance management
  • Mobile device management, including approved device lists, PIN lock enforcement and removal of confidential information from lost or stolen phones

Exchange Online provides globally redundant servers and disaster recovery tools to protect your information and make it available when needed.

Are you looking for IT and Microsoft Office 365 support in Polk County or Hillsborough County? Alltek Services has served local businesses for years, delivering IT strategy and solutions that help companies achieve greater success. To learn more, connect with our team today for a free consultation.

Microsoft Office 365 delivers powerful tools to your Central Florida business to collaborate, connect and manage projects with support from Alltek Services

Is My Company At Risk If I Don’t Have A Managed IT Services Company?

Managed IT Services

Of the risks your company faces on a regular basis, those associated with your IT department are likely a low concern and priority. The fact is, in today’s world most office professionals are capable of conducting the majority of their own IT work as needed for their individual devices. However, that isn’t their primary job description; their time is better used for the projects they were hired to do. There is also a matter of uniformity and consistency with how work is performed. When these issues are considered, it begins to make sense as to why a designated IT team is generally a worthwhile investment.

What Are Managed IT Services?

Just like employees are specialists in their own job description, IT people also tend to have specialties. Although IT people have the training and education required to work in any field, their personal expertise depends on their individual professional experience. Someone who has worked in architectural offices, as an example, may have a bit of learning curve when dealing with medical software and equipment. That’s not to say they “can’t” do the job and do it well, but they will take longer and likely have to correct some errors after initial setup. Hiring an outside source with specific industry experience for managed IT services is recognized as a solution for these and other problems that arise when using an in-house team.

Budgeting and Accounting for IT Expenses

With an in-house IT department, you know what you pay the employees who conduct the work, but are you aware of how much you’re really spending regarding efficiency? This can include issues with how much downtime the IT team has, and how much time other employees are spending to do some of the work themselves. Many office needs can be provided with an app, but what happens when the marketing department is using one app while the sales team uses a different app? Then you have to consider the time spent when they work together to make their work compatible with each other. An in-house IT team will likely work with each department individually rather than pointing out how efficiency would be boosted if they both agreed to use the same programming. Having an outside managed IT resource is going to be more likely to assure such inconsistencies are corrected.

Maintaining a Secure Network

To the layman, “Secure Network” can vary according to each person’s concerns. Cyber attack is something everyone who uses a computer is aware of, and certainly a threat every company faces. But there are other ways in which a network can be insecure. Imagine the nightmare of having a major system-wide failure and losing important client information. Such an incident might happen from a computer crash due to improper setup, outdated software, or even a natural disaster. It’s important to remember information has to be backed up, securely, as insurance might cover the physical damage of a flood or fire but no amount of insurance payment can cover the cost of lost data when hardware is destroyed in such a scenario.

Keeping a Backup Plan in Case of Emergency

There always has to be a backup plan in place for such an emergency. One of the worst things that can happen to a business is for clients to lose faith in the company’s ability to provide their service, and that’s what happens when you lose data. Think about how you would feel if an investment adviser had to ask you to resupply all your information with an explanation it had been lost in a network failure. You probably wouldn’t feel comfortable continuing to work with that company because even though they might be really good with financial advice, they aren’t completing the job by keeping your investments secure. Likewise, your clients are going to wonder about your professionalism if you lose their information.

Specialized Services for Your Field

Specialized services are the new norm and expectation of every business, and this concept holds true for IT personnel as well. To return to the previous example, the IT person who works with an architect knows how to set up a plotter to make blueprints, and they understand how to use software toward making graphic designs for presentational purposes. They have an aptitude for such things which is why they went into the IT business, but they still don’t have the experience to set up medical equipment and even though some software might be the same or similar, it’s going to be used differently by a doctor’s office. Someone with a specific specialty working with people in your field is merely going to be more efficient for your needs.

Trying to “Figure It Out on the Fly”

Having office workers conduct their own IT work can potentially be even more disastrous toward office morale and overall efficiency. Most people have a familiarity with computers and equipment and can figure out how to get it working, but might take all day or even settle for a less than perfect setup. Have you ever seen someone print a 20-page document one page at a time because they can’t get the printer to print the entire project as a single function? Now imagine that situation with over a hundred pages, and what else they could be working on instead of manually printing each page and then having to put the papers in proper order after spending half a day trying to make it work. An IT person fixes it by spending five minutes to clear old data and restart the printer.

Conclusion

The rest of your company is specialized by department, so should your IT. A managed IT services company can provide for your needs and due to the nature of the work, makes more sense than allowing the job to be conducted in-house. You end up with oversight for your network by specialists not only in IT work, but how it pertains to your business needs.

Of the risks your company faces on a regular basis, those associated with your IT department are likely a low concern and priority. The fact is, in today’s world most office professionals are capable of conducting the majority of their own IT work as needed for their individual devices. However, that isn’t their primary job

How Can I Tell If My Business Needs Managed IT Services?

Most of us, when asked if we would prefer to pay for something we could theoretically do ourselves, will opt to take care of the task personally – even if it’s not our strong suit, or indeed, if we lack all experience entirely. This is often the case with managed IT services.

Managed IT Services

Whether your company has an in-house IT team or is small enough that you hire only one person, chances are good you don’t spend much time thinking about whether you should update your approach. That could spell disaster for your company, though, especially in this day and age of cyber attack and data breach.

Here’s a quick look at what most people get wrong about IT management and six of the most common signs your company needs it.

Why Does IT Require So Much Management, Anyway?

The root of many companies’ unwillingness to bring on IT help stems from a fundamental misunderstanding about its nature. Most people think of computers and other technology as a blank canvas of sorts. You put your applications and software on them, type messages, input information, manage spreadsheets and message others using the systems IT makes available to you. But you rarely think about the systems themselves.

That’s a problem. If we compare it to dentistry, you’ll see why. No one would claim that you can eat and eat all day without ever worrying about your teeth. Taking care of your teeth requires both daily maintenance and constant vigil, looking out for any problems that might be headed down the pipeline. Brushing your teeth isn’t enough to stay safe and healthy, but neither can you neglect to brush your teeth simply because you watch for cavities.

Managed IT is like any other sphere requiring both care and prevention. Your daily activities are the food. Your hardware and software and network security protocols are the teeth. If they don’t stay healthy, you won’t have the tools to eat for long.

Sadly, most companies have neither the expertise nor the resources to care for your company’s IT the way it needs. The result is that they use IT systems until they break, at which time they cast about wildly for the quickest possible fix, so they can go on with business as usual. Sometimes your in-house team can handle it, but more often (at least when the problem is serious), they can’t. As for preventing those problems in the first place, that’s usually more than one small team or a single individual can handle on behalf of a company.

5 Signs Your Business Needs Managed IT Services

That’s where managed IT services come in. When you outsource your IT needs to an outside company, you have access to a true wealth of expertise and professional tools. Rather than the limited knowledge and skills of one person – and whatever budget you can put toward information technology in-house – you now have an entire business on your side.

Still, think you don’t need outsourced IT services? Here are five signs you do.

  1. Tech issues stop productivity in its tracks: You’ve been there. The day was going just fine, and suddenly someone’s computer manifested a weird bug … and then everyone’s computer seemed to have it. Or maybe your SSL certificate grew outdated and no one fixed it; the network went down and no one could figure out why; half the people in the office were locked out and asked to create new passwords for no reason. These “temporary” problems might have solutions, but that doesn’t make them easy to deal with. If you’re facing a lot of them, it’s time to do something about it.
  2. Your “IT guy” doesn’t have experience in your niche: It hardly bears saying that banking IT and artisanal grocery IT are not the same thing. While both require careful safeguarding of customer information, the former industry manages far more detailed, and personal data is under much greater scrutiny and is subject to particular federal laws regarding the safeguarding of information. To keep your company aboveboard, you need someone who knows exactly what they’re doing, both on the day to day, and in extreme situations or crisis.
  3. You don’t have a security plan: One of the primary responsibilities of an IT staff is to ensure you have a good security plan and robust software to back it up. If you don’t have a strong defensive approach, you could find yourself at the mercy of cyberattackers and data thieves, so don’t wait for that to happen before contacting a real IT provider.
  4. Your maintenance plan is casual at best: Again, many companies use a “break it, fix it” model, in which they turn a blind eye to systems until something goes wrong. With preventative maintenance, however, you can avoid many (if not most) of those breaks – but you need someone who knows what they’re doing. An expert can help you configure your systems most intelligently, reallocate resources as your company grows, protect new vulnerabilities that open up and stay on top of updates, so you’re always protected and functioning at the highest level of productivity.
  5. You’re paying too much for IT: If you’ve ever asked yourself “Why does it cost so much to deal with this?” that’s a bad sign. Believe it or not, it often costs less to pay for outsourced IT, because you have access to economies of scale that you just don’t have if you employ a few people in-house. We challenge you to do a cost comparison and see what happens.

Don’t Wait to Get Started with Managed IT Today

In the end, your decision to outsource your IT services to a professional provider should be an easy one. It’s like getting a dentist. Is there really any doubt that your company needs one to stay healthy now and in the future?

Hint: The answer is no. If you want to stay safe from attack, steer clear of potential disaster and keep your business humming along at the most productive rate, it’s time to make the switch today.

Most of us, when asked if we would prefer to pay for something we could theoretically do ourselves, will opt to take care of the task personally – even if it’s not our strong suit, or indeed, if we lack all experience entirely. This is often the case with managed IT services. Whether your company

Network Bottlenecking: How to Find & Fix the Hidden Culprits Slowing Down Your Company Network

Common Network Bottlenecks & What You Can Do to Fix Them

Identifying network bottlenecks and developing concrete strategies to remedy them

Chances are, you or members of your team would agree that while your network holds all the resources you need to get work done, it sometimes doesn’t operate at the most efficient or productive speed. This may not seem like a huge issue, but when it comes to pursuing business goals and driving business growth in a competitive marketplace, a lagging network and the corresponding downtime can have negative impacts on your company’s prosperity.

That’s why coming to understand the exact reasons your network is falling behind and developing strategies for remedying these issues is critical. Network bottlenecks can seem like a tedious and complex problem to address and overcome, but the reality is, once you develop a process for identification and response, fixing even the trickiest of bottlenecks is possible.

Alltek Services believes strongly in connecting business professionals with useful and practical information that will help them maintain stronger and more productive business networks. Information is power, so we’ve created a foolproof guide to help professionals like you understand what network bottlenecks are, and how you can remedy them, and ultimately prevent them for good.

The Basics: What is A Network Bottleneck Anyway?

Simply put, a network bottleneck is any condition – obvious or unseen – through which data flow becomes limited thanks to insufficient computer or network resources. Network data flow is controlled by the bandwidth allotted to various resources and devices on the system. When a high volume of data is trying to flow through the network and there is insufficient bandwidth support, bottlenecks and network congestion are bound to occur.

Network bottlenecks manifest because of a variety of different network issues. The trickiest part of dealing with network bottlenecks is that sometimes the issues are obvious and easy to identify. However, other times pesky network bottlenecks are hidden and some digging is involved when trying to identify and resolve them.

Some of the most common network bottlenecks are caused by:

  • Server configuration
  • Communications hardware like VoIP phones
  • Numerous access points
  • Bandwidth overload or improper segmentation
  • Underequipped network switches or faulty hardware
  • Any network resource that is insufficiently designed to support network speed and data flow

The fact of the matter is, even companies who are paying for top-tier Internet speeds could be experiencing much slower speeds than expected if network resources aren’t properly aligned and bottlenecks are building up. That’s why developing a game plan for identifying and responding to the bottlenecks specific to your company network is critical to maintain a productive working environment and get the most value out of network speed investments.

Concrete Strategies for Easing Your Network Bottleneck Issues

As mentioned, the network congestion caused by bottlenecking is a common problem that will inevitably impact the networks of all business professionals at some point and to some extent. Because the impacts can be frustrating for your team and detrimental to overall office productivity, having concrete strategies for responding to network bottlenecks and eliminating network congestion is critical.

Check out these concrete ways you can get on top of common network bottlenecking issues:

  • Monitor network traffic

The first step is all about keeping an eye on your network traffic in order to identify problem areas and gain insights about the nature of network congestion in your system. By monitoring your network, you’ll be able to determine the distribution of network traffic and reduce congestion.

  • Segment your network strategically

Network segmentation involves breaking your larger network off into smaller sub-networks to avoid an overflow of network traffic congestion. By segmenting your network, you can group resources into specific areas which will allow for easier monitoring and more strategic insights. Then, you’ll have eliminated much of the guesswork and will be able to reduce congestion by segment.

  • Deploy a Content Delivery Network (CDN)

A content delivery network (CDN) can be extremely useful in terms of monitoring and optimizing the flow of static content. A CDN stores static content on edge servers, meaning a decrease in requests bombarding the network. CDN’s can also be a useful tool when it comes to bandwidth management. Overall, the use of a CDN can be a strategic asset when trying to reduce network congestion.

  • Reconfigure network settings

As data traffic moves through your network, some devices send and receive information at different speeds. This can result in some serious network congestion. Adjusting the TCP/IP settings to better sync requesting and receiving speeds can be useful in helping your network better process data traffic and reduce congestion.

  • Prioritize network traffic

This strategy is all about determining which network traffic is most important for your business. For instance, if your organization uses VoIP phones, and this traffic is the priority, your network router can be configured to prioritize this flow of data. The prioritization of network traffic can be used to better utilize and optimize bandwidth and prevent congestion before it begins.

  • Assess your hardware

Once you’ve identified trouble areas on your network, established the plan of action to remedy each bottleneck, and reconfigured your settings, it’s important to take stock of your hardware and determine what needs your attention. Are there any upgrades, updates, or replacements necessary? Stay ahead of common network bottlenecks by giving attention to your hardware and avoid congestion at this source.

Using these strategies as a guide is a great start when it comes to better understanding and responding to frustrating and tedious network bottleneck issues. While network congestion can seem like an impossible and annoying challenge to overcome, relying on practical strategies like these ones will help you feel more empowered and in control of your network hang-ups.

Looking for Local Tech Support to Start Eliminating Network Bottlenecks?

When it comes to tackling pesky tech issues like network bottlenecking and congestion, it’s never a bad idea to reach out to a team of IT professionals. Partnering with experts can make a huge difference in terms of strategically identifying bottlenecks, and optimizing your approach to fixing them.

The team at Alltek Services has immense experience working with all different types of business professionals to track down network congestion culprits and deploy strategies to restore adequate data flow and network speed. In fact, we recently put together a brief video on some of the most common bottlenecks we encounter when working with clients. If you think our team could support your effort to optimize network traffic and eliminate annoying bottlenecks, don’t hesitate to give us a call anytime at (863) 709-0709.

Did you find this article informative? As always, we’re happy to help! If you liked this, check out these other articles we think you’ll love:

https://www.alltekservices.com/2019-tech-plan/

https://www.alltekservices.com/business-it-services/

https://www.alltekservices.com/stop-letting-being-busy-paralysis-you-from-being-productive/

All modern business professionals have dealt with this issue at least once before. Right in the midst of a busy day or season, the company network seems to be lagging at unusually slow speeds. Colleagues start getting frustrated, important tasks get put on the back-burner and employee morale hits an all-time low. The worst part is, no one can seem to pinpoint what is causing the network slow-down.

Local Waste Equipment Company Taps Alltek To Resolve Networking Challenges

For a business with multiple offices in Lakeland, Florida, or in Polk County, the State of Florida, or even another state, secure networking between offices is essential. A local waste equipment company recently learned just how important. They contacted Alltek Services for solutions to resolve its networking challenges and got it. Here’s why this local waste equipment company — with multiple offices — needs secure networking and why your business needs it, too, especially if your business has one or more satellite offices.

What are common network challenges facing businesses with multiple offices today?

All businesses today have some network challenges. The IT world is ever-changing and ever-advancing. With these changes and advancements come the challenges. Knowing what the most common network challenges are — specific to a company with satellite offices — is your starting point for meeting the challenge and overcoming it.

Network Challenge #1: Security Risk

IT network security is the number one challenge facing almost any company, whether or not the business has one location or multiple locations. But this challenge increases with each additional office site, especially when the satellite office is across town or in another state. The more connections your business has to the internet, the more your company is exposed to security risk. Security risk materializes in different forms for companies with multiple locations, both externally and internally.

External Security Risk

There can be any number of external security risks, like weather-related events that shut down your system. But one external security risk that exceeds all others is the risk of being hacked.

Hackers seek confidential information. Unfortunately, so many small businesses believe they are not a target of hackers because they believe hackers are more interested and likely to target big companies, like Target, Yahoo!, and other major national and international corporations. The problem with that belief is: it just isn’t true. Hackers will hack you, too, to steal your confidential information. And they do so because often smaller businesses are more accessible to hackers.

Internal Security Risk

Internal security risks is something many small businesses fail to consider and, therefore, plan for. Like external security risks, internal ones can materialize in different ways, but your number one internal security risk is almost always going to be your employees, whether it is intentional or not — and in nearly all cases it is not intended.

Employees pose a serious security risk, especially to small businesses with multiple sites. Some employees are unlearned when it comes to using computers and security risks. They may share information they should not. They may use unsecured websites during work. They may create simple, easy passwords that are easily hacked. A recent study as reported by Security Magazine found that employees’ negligence is a top information security risk to U.S. businesses. But it does not end at negligence. Some employees may even become disgruntled for one reason or another and purposefully do something to expose your network to risk.

Network Challenge #2: Risk Management

Risk management is a network challenge that is aligned directly with security risks. Managing your network is the key to securing your network, but many small businesses, especially those with satellite offices, fail to provide their business with a network management plan to effectively and comprehensively address, prevent, and counter risk. Failed risk management often materializes because there is no central strategy or central management of the company’s network, and this poses serious problems.

Examples of failed risk management include:

  • Security Breaches
  • Failure to identify risk
  • Failure to counter the risk
  • Software failure.

Identifying risk is the first step to risk management of your IT network system. The National Institute of Standards and Technology provides a thorough overview of risk management, its problems and its solutions for businesses.

Network Challenge #3: Connectivity

Connectivity is a problem for many businesses with multiple locations. And this is the one network challenge that is always on the minds of the business owner and its employees because it is the most prevalent and in-your-face network challenge. When you are not connected or when your offices are not connecting, you know it, you feel it, and so does your company and its clients or customers. The network challenge of connectivity is the most basic and most real challenge that connects you to the world and to the network challenges of security risks, which is directly linked to the network challenge of risk management.

Solve your connectivity issues is often your first step toward solving other network challenges. Preventing connectivity issues, likewise, is your first step to preventing and addressing other network challenges.

How can these network challenges be solved?

Addressing and solving your network challenges is fundamental to a successful business with multiple sites — it’s the same even if you do not have a satellite office. But how do you do it? The answer does not need to be complicated. The answer lies in finding the right IT services and support company — one that offers options.

First and foremost, as noted above, you need to make sure you are connected and that that connection is safe, secure, reliable. From there, you want to make sure you know how to manage your risks, particularly security risks. Alltek Services provides you with services and support to ensure you are connected and stay connected. Structured cabling, which makes sure you have the connection you need and managed IT services, which takes care of network planning and security, are provided — and this can be ideal for any business with one or more satellite locations throughout Florida and beyond. If you are located in Polk County or Hillsborough County and have network challenges that you need to be addressed or solved, contact us. We make it our business to make sure your business is connected and connected securely.

A local Florida waste equipment company needed to resolve its networking challenges and contacted Alltek. Those challenges are addressed with immediate solutions.

The 2019 Cyber Security Guide For Financial Professionals

The 2019 Cyber Security Guide For Financial Professionals

The securities industry has been as vulnerable to cyber attacks in 2018 as any other industry. According to the SEC’s Enforcement Division newly created Cyber Unit (formed in 2017 to enhance the ability of the Commission to identify and investigate all cyber-related threats to firms), 20 actionable cases were brought forward in fiscal year (FY) 2018. 225 open investigations are also being conducted by members of the Cyber Unit at the close of FY 2018.

Firms have an affirmative duty to establish policies and procedures designed to detect and deter cyber-threats. These include both the Safeguards Rule and the Identity Theft Red Flags Rule. Failure to put in place necessary protections designed to safeguard customer information and prevent fraud may result in enforcement action by the SEC.

SEC Cyber Security Enforcement Actions

This was the case with an enforcement action taken against a Des Moines, IA-based firm fined $1 million for its failure to put in place proper cybersecurity policies and procedures. The action came as a result of a cyber intrusion that fraudulently reset customer passwords. This allowed the cyber thieves access to more than 5,600 of the firm’s accounts, which allowed new profiles to be created and specific access to private documents of three customer accounts. The failure to have in place proper procedures in keeping with regulatory requirements made what was preventable inevitable.

As the old year ends and a new one begins, what are some of the cyber threats facing investment professionals? In keeping with mandated requirements from the SEC, FINRA, and state securities commissions, what should be done to keep ahead of the growing potential of a cyber attack or unwanted intrusion that threatens customer safety, privacy, and the integrity of U.S. financial markets?

The State of Cyber Security in 2018

A recently discovered data breach of Marriott International’s Starwood Hotel guest reservation database comprised the information of nearly 500 million customers. A Federal Trade Commission (FTC) consumer advisory released on December 4, 2018, announced that the breach, which began in 2014, impacts all hotel registrations made up to September 10, 2018.

Information that hackers were able to access includes customer names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, passport numbers, dates of birth, and the gender of the reservationist. Additionally, any Starwood loyalty program account information and reservation information entered was taken and for some customers, payment information (and possible expiration dates).

The compromise of Starwood customer information by hackers is just the tip of a very tall iceberg of incidents that took place in the U.S. and across the globe. Cybersecurity issues touched nearly every industry sector and business size, from Texas-based Jason’s Deli to social media giant Facebook. State-sponsored attacks have also been exposed in 2018, validating concerns about the integrity of the U.S. election process and the continuing influence of bad-faith actors such as Iran, Russian, and North Korea.

Those issues affecting business worldwide are those that affect financial professionals and the securities industry. Efforts must be taken to tighten up required controls that detect and deter cyber attacks. Paying lip service to these issues will result in the loss of customer confidence as further attacks expose vulnerabilities.

Cyber Security Issues for 2019 Affecting Financial Professionals

There are at least four specific cybersecurity issues that financial professionals should be aware of heading into 2019:

  • Testing a firm’s cybersecurity policies and procedures to ensure
  • Leveraging technology to police technology
  • The impact of artificial intelligence by hackers to access client accounts and information
  • The growing influence of the “Dark Web” and the exposure of personal and private information

These issues may be of particular concern for financial professionals looking to maintain strong customer relationships. Awareness of the potential for attack must be met with definitive action to strengthen systems and hold back minor and major intrusions that could have a long-term effect on business and the confidence the investing public has in the U.S. financial system.

Establishing and Testing an Investment Firm’s Cyber Security Policies and Procedures

The SEC noted in its enforcement actions taken against firms in 2018 that failed to protect client data that the failure stemmed from the lack of sufficient cybersecurity policies and procedures. Such policies and procedures are only one part of the solution to building robust IT systems capable of withstanding dedicated cyber attacks.

In addition to well-documented policies and procedures specifically tailored to the financial systems, firms and financial professionals must also work with their IT teams to test their ability to detect, address, and defeat cyber attacks. The loss of customer information to a data breach through a system vulnerability that could have been prevented hurts not only the entity breached but the industry as a whole.

As firms increasingly rely on technology to conduct business, greater reliance must be placed on constant vigilance. The mentality cannot be that since an attack has not occurred, there is no problem; it must be that an attack may happen at any time.

Using Technology to Defeat Technology

Cybersecurity issues cannot be regulated away. The establishment of policies and procedures, as discussed, is one of the ways to identify the severity of these attacks and their potential impact on business. Working on using technology to prevent technology from causing cyber attacks and other unwanted intrusions is the next level for financial professions.

It stands to reason that these attacks are the result of machines finding ways to invade other devices. This may be to spread viruses that cripple or disable a recipient system for a period of time, or to disrupt business operations by denying access to customers, or to set in motion ransomware or other types of malware for the purpose of extortion. Policies and procedures establish recognition of the potential for harm but technology sets in place the necessary firewalls and disaster recovery processes for business to continue operating (with little to no disruption).

Artificial Intelligence

Machines, currently through the aid of those with ill-intent, lead the attack on financial systems, threatening the privacy of customer data. Artificial intelligence (AI) or the ability of machines to develop routines and learning processes that make devices less dependent on human input is also growing as a potential threat.

Facebook confronted this issue in the summer of 2018 when its Facebook AI Research Lab (FAIR) was forced to shut down a project involving the use of AI known as chatbots. Chatbots are a type of AI where programs that are automated to complete a specific task can communicate with each other to make the routine more efficient. The FAIR project attempted to add a negotiation element between the chatbots, which to the horror of researchers, resulted in the AI developing its own language at a rate that was faster than what humans could anticipate and control.

The growing presence of AI in technology and the use of robots, specifically chatbots, to complete basic tasks may very well be the way of the future. Its existence, however, should raise legitimate concerns and warrant additional protections and regulatory action to ensure that the results of an accidental experience (like the outcome of the FAIR project) does not set in motion a sponsored attack that could have the potential of taking down the U.S. financial system in 2019 (and beyond).

Dark Web

The dark web, which refers to encrypted information that is unavailable through traditional internet search engines. A part of the deep web, it is a facility for transactions in private data (most of which is financial in nature) that has been stolen and may be purchased with cryptocurrency such as bitcoins. eCommerce on the dark web has grown exponentially – the Economist reported that between 2012 and 2016 the sale of illegal drugs through the darknet increased from $12 – $17 million to $120 – $180 million in four short years.

Data breaches that have occurred with all too regular frequency in 2018 have produced information that has found its way to the dark web. The marketplace for compromised identity information (i.e., social security number, date of birth, payment information, etc.) is growing at a rate comparable to what the Economist reported for illicit drug sales. Financial professionals, particularly in the age of anti-money laundering (AML) programs required to prevent terrorist financing and other illegal financial activities, will be challenged to verify the legitimacy of customer information and protect against the introduction of dark web data used to illegally open accounts or engage in financial transactions.

These are only a few of the cybersecurity issues facing financial professionals entering 2019. Greater awareness and vigilance is required of everyone within the industry to get in front of the growing influence of technology on our lives. Protecting the integrity of financial systems is more than good business. It may very well be what prevents a global financial disaster from happening, the scale for which would be unprecedented.

The securities industry has been as vulnerable to cyber attacks in 2018 as any other industry. According to the SEC’s Enforcement Division newly created Cyber Unit (formed in 2017 to enhance the ability of the Commission to identify and investigate all cyber-related threats to firms), 20 actionable cases were brought forward in fiscal year (FY)

How Can Local Companies Best Use Outsourced IT Services?

Outsource IT

Outsourcing IT services involves hiring third-party IT companies or specialists to handle IT-related tasks. A growing number of companies are opting to outsource their IT department to experts who can fully focus on a company’s IT needs while company employees concentrate on promoting the company’s goods and/or services, generating sales, providing customer service and other essential tasks.

There are numerous outsourcing business models to pick from, enabling a company owner to select the best option to meet his or her company’s specific needs. Some companies opt to outsource one-time IT tasks and then handle their regular IT tasks internally. Other business owners have found that outsourcing some ongoing IT jobs while keeping others in-house is the best option while still other businesses opt to outsource their entire IT department to a reliable third-party service.

What IT Tasks are Typically Outsourced?

Almost any IT job can be outsourced, but some are more frequently outsourced than others. These include:

  • Website design, development and hosting
  • Technical support for company staff members
  • IT security, including the provision of back-up and recovery services
  • IT training for in-house employees
  • Helpdesk services
  • Network management
  • Application and database development
  • Telecommunication services
  • Cloud storage

What are the Benefits of IT Outsourcing?

Companies that specialize in offering outsource IT services have trained, experienced experts who can handle a company’s IT issues quickly, efficiently and with relative ease. The ability to obtain expert services without having to pay for and train fulltime workers enables many companies to save money that can then be used to generate revenue and/or attract investors.

IT outsourcing enables a company to use cutting-edge IT equipment and technology without having to regularly update computers and software programs to stay in step with new technological developments. What is more, outsourcing saves time because business owners do not have to learn about IT hardware and software options; instead, IT management is handled by those who have the skills needed to make wise, well-informed decisions.

Many companies that handle outsourced IT jobs offer scaled services to enable business owners to select the services that meet a company’s needs at any given time. A business that needs more cloud storage space, for instance, would simply need to rent this space from its IT service provider. An entrepreneur who needs additional customer service assistance on a seasonal basis can obtain it by asking the IT company to assign more representatives to his or her business for a particular period. Conversely, a company can easily eliminate specific IT tasks without having to lay off employees and/or sell IT equipment.

IT outsourcing also improves IT security. Third-party service providers stay abreast of IT security developments and can help any company to prevent malware and ransomware attacks, breaches and other issues that would slow services and damage a business’ reputation. Furthermore, IT experts can train a company’s employees in IT security issues such as proper email management, internal and external communications procedures and file storage and backup procedures.

However, the best reason for a company to hire outside experts to handle a company’s IT services is that proper IT management can mean the difference between success and failure for any business in any industry. Just about every company relies on IT technology to manage customer databases, track inventory, manage company websites and other integral tasks. This technology needs to be regularly maintained, checked and updated by an expert whose sole job is to keep IT operations running as they should. Dedicated third-party IT service providers are experts in their field who can keep any company’s IT department running at optimum speed and efficiency levels. Without their help, it would be impossible for many business owners to stay a step ahead of the competition. This is particularly true for small to medium-sized businesses that cannot afford to hire experienced, full-time IT workers.

Are There Any Disadvantages to IT Outsourcing?

While IT outsourcing has much to offer any business, there are some pitfalls that business owners need to be aware of when choosing an IT service provider. These include:

  • Hiring a company that is based overseas. IT offshoring may result in language and cultural problems as foreign IT professionals who aren’t familiar with a company’s business model will need training in how to adequately handle company data, equipment and/or services. Furthermore, time zone differences can make it hard for a company’s employees to communicate with overseas IT personnel as needed.
  • Choosing a company that does not have the expertise needed to take on specialized IT services. Healthcare organizations need to work with an IT company whose technicians are familiar with local compliance regulations. Companies offering legal services will require an IT company that specializes in legal matters.
  • Picking an IT service provider based on price rather than the quality of service offered. A good IT company will offer an uptime guarantee. Furthermore, it will offer in-house assistance rather than outsourcing its own services to contractors.

Is outsourcing IT services to a third-party provider a good idea? Many business owners have found the answer is a resounding yes. The advantages of outsourcing far outweigh the disadvantages. Even so, it is important to choose an IT service provider with care. Doing so will enable a company to obtain the best possible assistance both now and in the future.

Outsourcing IT services involves hiring third-party IT companies or specialists to handle IT-related tasks. A growing number of companies are opting to outsource their IT department to experts who can fully focus on a company’s IT needs while company employees concentrate on promoting the company’s goods and/or services, generating sales, providing customer service and other essential tasks.

Top Concerns CISOs Face With Cybersecurity In 2019

Cybersecurity Concerns 2019

Chief information security officers face new and stronger threats to systems in 2019. Not only are hackers deploying more sophisticated attacks, but attackers have new targets in their sights. Also, geopolitics and consumers will continue to play an outsized role in discussions of cybersecurity issues.

Knowing what horizon issues will help CISOs to plan accordingly and deploy solutions that are ahead of the looming problems.

What New Technologies Are Hackers Using?

One growing threat is botnets, in which hackers compromise hundreds, thousands or millions of infected computers. Hackers run command-and-control networks to manage these zombie computers.

One widespread use of botnets is distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, which flood domains with so many requests that they can’t handle real inquiries. Often websites crash and are not recoverable unless a ransom is paid.

Botnets are delivered via worms, which attack spreadsheets and documents, and viruses that target systems, destroy data or make networks inoperable. Once implanted in a system, viruses and worms spread, infecting more computers and doing more damage to files.

The challenge for CISOs is to remain ever-vigilant in this front line of attack. Anti-malware software that is continuously running in the background and automatically updated is one key solution. However, companies large and small also need to stay on top of the software, hardware and operating system upgrades, making sure that all devices and programs are updated. These protections need to be in place both for core system servers and end-user devices.

Finally, an in-depth defense should involve regular, meaningful and compelling personnel training that makes employees aware of how to avoid phishing traps and remain suspicious of unknown or unfamiliar emails and attachments.

Are There Other Risks from Hackers?

Hackers frequently use the Dark Web to trade, share and buy information. As defenses get more complicated, hackers become more determined to find new ways to thwart preventative measures.

Take, for example, exploit kits, which are traded regularly on the Dark Web. Hackers do not issue attacks in one fell swoop. Instead, they sniff and explore different aspects of a target. While malware and phishing schemes target end users, other tools are deployed to explore the system’s website and perimeter.

Exploit kits are self-contained, all-in-one tools that are developed with discretion in mind. If a hacker finds a vulnerability on a website, it can attack the server that hosts said site. When a victim visits the website, they are redirected to a rogue server instead, which gathers information about the victim. The exploit kit identifies and delivers an exploit that is attached to the victim and downloaded onto the victim’s computer, often via a software security hole.

Another example is an APT (advanced persistent threat). Another stealthy hacker tool, the APT can enter a system network and lie dormant until activated. APTs don’t do file damage but steal financial and other critical information. When login credentials are taken, the APT can dive deeper into a system to compromise even more data.

Then there’s the drive-by download attack. Such attacks don’t require any action on the part of a user. Malicious code is downloaded automatically upon visiting a URL via a browser, operating system or app. Often these attacks contain multiple pieces of code that infiltrate the system in the hopes that a few get past your defenses.

Stopping these attacks means updating browsers, using anti-malware tools and deploying sophisticated firewalls that monitor and protect the network’s perimeter. Intrusion detection systems and alerts can identify, contain and neutralize many of these threats before they cause significant damage.

What About Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Defense?

The growing application of blockchain technology in many areas has led to new opportunities for theft of these assets. While blockchain can be difficult to hack, mining for cryptocurrency is a lucrative endeavor.

The challenge with mining for crypto is it takes a tremendous amount of computing power. Hackers are hijacking (cryptojacking) corporate and personal computers to take advantage of their processors to mine. It’s a passive way for hackers to make money, but can dramatically slow down computer performance and add to utility costs. As long as cryptojacking remains profitable, it will be a headache for CISOs.

Do I Need to Worry about Cloud Data?

More companies have shifted data and applications to the cloud, breathing a collective sigh of relief that the protection and monitoring of that information are in the capable hands of a trusted third party. However, companies often deploy cloud data solutions without investing in the underlying security, particularly encryption. That means many companies have unsecured information stored in the cloud that is easily accessible to anyone who might want to use, steal, manipulate or alter it.

Hackers are shifting their tactics about how to disrupt data. Instead of stealing it, they are manipulating data. Data manipulation attacks can do serious harm to company reputations as data users question the reliability and accuracy of data sources. The impact on information providers, financial institutions and medical practices and hospitals could be devastating if data are altered such that an organization’s integrity is questioned.

What About Data Regulations?

In 2018, two significant regulations came into being. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) governs data protection and privacy for citizens of the European Union and affects any organization that does business with said residents. California passed a sweeping online privacy law that affects consumers and requires companies to disclose on demand specific uses and sales of consumer information.

More regulation is likely. With more regulatory complexity will come additional challenges for CISOs.

Consider that Europe, China and the U.S. have very different approaches to data and its regulation. China takes a very nationalistic view of data, seeing it as something to be protected and contained within the country’s borders. Europe considers data as something that needs to be highly protected and kept secure.

The U.S. has seen data as a commodity to be commercialized, sold and leveraged for financial gain. There is very little unifying federal guidance on data security like Europe’s GDPR.

In the U.S., companies could face different data privacy requirements from each state if others take California’s lead.

What does this mean for companies? A complicated regulatory landscape. There will be difficulty in gathering, storing and using data from multiple jurisdictions. It could also lead to greater compliance issues as companies need to grapple with similar but distinct reporting standards for different states, countries or regions.

What Political Concerns Affect Cybersecurity?

The U.S. is embroiled in several controversies with other nation-states related to cybersecurity. Ongoing investigations about Russian intervention in elections, trade wars with China, and concerns about trade agreements in North America and Europe add to a climate of political uncertainty. Cybersecurity will likely continue to be a political issue both domestically and internationally throughout 2019, especially in the lead up to the 2020 presidential elections.

How Are Consumers Affected?

As consumers and companies become more interconnected, hackers are shifting their targets away from corporations to consumer devices. This concern becomes more significant with the vast proliferation of the internet of things. With smarter, connected devices in use comes added vulnerability. Hackers could, for example, attack a smart television and hold it for ransom. Connected toys could become a target for child predators. Already there is an increase in sextortion attacks designed to shame victims into believing their visits to porn sites were recorded and will be released if a ransom isn’t paid.

While these consumer-based issues may not directly affect CISOs, they will if the attacks come from your devices or services or a result of data stolen from your company.

What Issues Arise from Passwords?

In recent years, multi-factor authentication has grown. Simple passwords continue to be a prime target of hackers. Password theft and password-related breaches become less prevalent and relevant for companies that deploy low-cost multi-factor solutions.

How Can We Combat Shadow Systems?

Ego, internal politics and budget often make it challenging to address rogue and shadow IT systems. The reality is that shadow IT systems not governed, maintained or monitored by central IT staff are a significant liability. With increased awareness and understanding of cyber threats, CISOs should use 2019 as a time to finally pull the plug on rogue systems.

Each year brings new complexities and challenges to IT security officers. Getting ahead of these issues and making sure your organization is ready to address them is a valuable new year’s resolution.

Chief information security officers face new and stronger threats to systems in 2019. Not only are hackers deploying more sophisticated attacks, but attackers have new targets in their sights. Also, geopolitics and consumers will continue to play an outsized role in discussions of cybersecurity issues. Knowing what horizon issues will help CISOs to plan accordingly

Alltek Services Pleased to Sponsor Toys for Tots Charity Event at Cardel Homes!

On a special day this holiday season, Tim Higgins began his day at 5:00am, checking on the brisket, pulled pork, and slabs of ribs that have been marinating all night. He loads up the smoker and BBQ supplies and heads to Riverview to set up for the annual Big Shiny Toys event; a charity event to support Toys for Tots.

Even though the event isn’t set to start until 10:00am, Tim takes his BBQ responsibilities seriously, so he starts smoking the meat immediately upon his arrival. By 9:30am the entire area in front of the Cardel Homes headquarters smells of delicious BBQ as visitors begin to arrive.

Tim Higgins: Network Engineer by Day, BBQ Master Around the Clock

If you’ve ever tried some of Tim’s BBQ, you’re probably convinced that this is his full-time job. Not only is his food perfectly smoked and packed with mouth-watering flavor, but he also has all of the top-of-the-line BBQ equipment you would expect from someone that does this for a living!

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In reality, though, Tim is a Senior Network Engineer at Alltek Services and is the architect behind many complicated and large computer networks. BBQ is just a hobby that he happens to be very good at – and those lucky enough to have tasted his BBQ’d selections know exactly what we’re talking about!

When Tim’s good friend Rob Revoy from Cardel Homes invited him to put his BBQ skills to work for a holiday charity event in support of local children, Tim was more than happy to oblige. Tim’s generosity and talent were an inspiration to our entire team, and Alltek Services was happy to come on board and sponsor all the meat for the event. The meat provided by Alltek (and perfected by Tim), helped to feed over 100 visitors and raise hundreds of dollars to support local children this holiday season!

Overall, the event was a huge success. Our BBQ master Tim got to do what he loves, Alltek was able to give back to the community, and Alltek team members got in the spirit by showing up to help. Of course, and most importantly, visitors at the event got their hands on some really good eats, all while supporting the children in our community who need it most this season.

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Fun for Kids of All Sizes: Alltek Services Brings Lunch & Cardel Homes Hosts a Car Show

In addition to the wonderful BBQ fundraiser that Tim spearheaded, the Big Shiny Toys event also featured a big shiny car show! The participation at the event doubled from last year, which means even more support for Toys for Tots! Not to mention, the car show put a bunch of ‘grown-up toys’ on display to bring out the child in all event participants. Check out some of the slickest cars that were entered in this year’s charity show:

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Alltek’s Commitment to Community Involvement: Why We Believe in Community Sponsorship

When Tim approached the rest of the Alltek team to request support for the Toys for Tots event, he didn’t need to say anymore. We were immediately on board and excited to learn how the Alltek team could best support this important organization. Toys for Tots is an incredible program that brightens the holidays for underprivileged families and gifts toys to hundreds of millions of children every year.

Alltek Services may just be a computer network support company, but we’re committed to offering much more than these network services to our community. We know there are so many ways for us to give back, and so much more than we can offer to enrich the lives of those around us. So, an opportunity to provide great food and charitable support for a holiday event benefiting local children – what more could our team ask for?

Whether it’s providing meat for a BBQ because Tim loves to share his cooking creations with those in need, or donating money for a golf tournament because our owner loves to put in some strokes for a good cause, Alltek is continually engaged with our community and does not plan on slowing down anytime soon. Check out Tim and our team in action at the Big Shiny Toys charity event in the video below. Warning, some images in this video may induce serious BBQ cravings!

Giving Back, Taking Action & Encouraging Other Lakeland Professionals to Do the Same

Our support of Toys for Tots isn’t the extent of our commitment to community engagement, either. This year alone, Alltek Services has had the opportunity to provide support to a variety of local organizations and important causes including:

  1. Leading Edge Take Heart Walk
  2. Kids Pack in Lakeland
  3. Boys and Girls Club of Lakeland and Mulberry
  4. Strings in Need
  5. Young Life
  6. Explorations 5

These are just some of the organizations we’ve had the opportunity to support. The Alltek team knows just how important support from local businesses can be for charitable groups of all shapes and sizes. The reality is, it would be downright selfish not to give back to a community that has given our business so much.

In addition to the direct charity and sponsorship work that we do, Alltek also provides a significant discount to the nonprofit and government clients that we have serviced for years. We understand that nonprofit organizations will not have the same technology budget as a private business in most cases, but they need support just as much to facilitate the amazing work they do all year long.

The goal of this post is not to humblebrag on how much we contribute. Its purpose is simply to highlight the importance – and fun – of giving back to one’s community. We’re just doing our part, in support of the community that we love, and we encourage all other growing businesses to give back as well – in whatever way they see fit!

To learn more about Alltek Services and our commitment to community engagement and charitable support, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team any time at (863) 709-0709. We look forward to hearing from you!

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On a special day this holiday season, Tim Higgins began his day at 5:00am, checking on the brisket, pulled pork, and slabs of ribs that have been marinating all night. He loads up the smoker and BBQ supplies and heads to Riverview to set up for the annual Big Shiny Toys event; a charity event