When it comes to solving a mystery there are two key questions to answer. First of all, you have to know that something happened. Secondly, and probably the most difficult question to answer is “what caused it”. This is a very cut and dry example of making a general diagnosis, but at the core, these are two things that need be identified to find a resolution. So whether you are a doctor making a health recommendation or a detective working on a case, these two items will be at the top of your list. The same is true, and becoming inherently more imperative, for small business network and technology management.
Based on today’s complex IT infrastructure, even for small and medium sized businesses, expanding knowledge gaps and more recurring delays make these answers harder to find. At the same time, this same infrastructure is critical for just about any core business service. Let’s take a closer look at these two questions and how they correspond to your business’ IT security.
Locating The Problem
Finding the problem has been widely solved by monitoring software. However, as stated above, the expanded scope of business technology has created too many moving pieces (and a corresponding amount of monitoring software) to provide comprehensive visibility. All of these different products and elements attempting to work together can often lead to blind spots and false alarms that can lead you away from the actual issue. The problem in locating a security or network issue stems from an overall lack of data. To make this even more difficult is the need to fix problems quickly. The amount of damage that can be done in a short amount of time can bring a business to its knees. Whether it’s a cyber-threat, data breach or something that will take your network offline, time is of the essence.
Determining What Has Changed & How to Correct It
There are two types of changes that can occur within your IT infrastructure. The first is a change that you strategically make. The second is a change that occurs as a result of a problem, accident or error. What compounds the problem of determining what has changed and whether it is potentially damaging or not, is that Software-Defined Networks (SDN) strategically makes frequent changes. This can make discovering a problem that much more difficult. Understanding baseline performance, when that basis is in constant flux makes pinpointing a threat challenging. Recognizing anomalies can lead you to the root cause of an issue. However, what qualifies as an anomaly largely depends on the ebbs and flows of your business. Your “typical” baseline can and does likely adjust as a result of the time of day, week or year. So recognizing a normal performance metric, like speed, as it relates to a busy time can let you know if there may be a potential problem.
These are only a couple of the challenges that face small businesses in regards to their network security and performance. Of course managing all of this on-site can be an expensive drain on resources, but at the same time cannot be ignored. When it comes to managing technology for small to medium sized businesses, AtlasOne Technologies has the tools, experience and expertise to provide a secure, efficient and effective management strategy. AtlasOne offers cloud solutions, data backup and managed IT services.