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Welcome to the Cloud Services Community

The Cloud Services Community is where IT Partners, Born in the Cloud Partners, Service Provider Agents and MSP’s come to learn how to build and grow a thriving Cloud Business. The community provides peer-to-peer guidance, help and advice from the CEO’s of successful Cloud partners and delivers unique opportunities to collaborate on the best Cloud practices.

Cloud Service Community Blogs

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Fighting Back Against Shadow IT: Part 3

Help your customers embrace cloud services to serve business stakeholders In Parts 1 and 2, we outlined the steps involved for you to help customers reduce their shadow IT and position yourself as a cloud services thought leader. In part 3, we discuss how you can work with the business units to understand their unique needs as well as empower development within both IT teams and business units. Work with Business Units to Understand Unique Needs In fighting back against shadow IT, it is vital that you create a process where the IT organization remains aware of applications and the handling...
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Fighting Back Against Shadow IT: Part 2

Help your customers embrace cloud services to serve business stakeholders In Part 1 we outlined how the rise of shadow IT affects both your customer’s and your business. You can help customers assess the situation to determine the extent of its use inside their companies and position yourself as a trusted cloud advisor. In Part 2 we will examine how to help customers identify mission-critical applications and which to host in the cloud. Identify Your Customer’s Mission-Critical Applications The second step in controlling this cloud-driven onslaught of shadow IT starts with helping your customer identify and acknowledge those applications and processes...
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Fighting Back Against Shadow IT: Part 1

Help your customers embrace cloud services to serve business stakeholders Introduction The term Shadow IT describes the use of IT systems, software or other solutions used inside an organization without knowledge or approval by the IT organization1[CG1]  This situation is arising because of the changing technology and services landscape. Business users are avoiding formal IT processes and procedures because their demand for technology to achieve business outcomes is outstripping an IT organization’s capacity to supply. Today, shadow IT may manifest itself through unauthorized applications, the storing and transferring of sensitive data outside of a secure network, or the spinning up of...
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Top Ten Commandments for Disaster Recovery Planning

Sungard Availability Services (Sungard AS) invented the concept of disaster recovery, defining and refining what the industry now knows as IT disaster resilience. After more than 30 years of delivering world-class disaster recovery (DR) services, we’ve boiled down what we’ve learned into 10 clear-cut rules for DR that every one of you should live by to ensure that customers’ have fully-recoverable production environments. Do you follow the 10 laws for disaster recovery when advising customers?  Don’t confuse backups with data recovery. Remind customers that having a copy of their data stored offsite is the only first step to data recovery. They also...
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Cyber-threats in 2016: Evolution, Potential & Overcoming Them pt 3

previewThe Dummy Malware Prevention Strategy for Everyone: Stay Awake! Cybercrimes breed when business environments are not prepared for illicit intrusions. Vintage anti-virus versions, unstructured BYOD culture, confusing cyber-security policies, multiple unauthorized users and lack of security training add up to losing critical enterprise data. Latency in preparing for emerging malware threats means a slow response, leveraging malware with more time to make inroads into your data silos. We recommend being proactive: Immediately report any irregularity in your data access paths or sharing platforms. Report any unwarranted network activity like new browsers, new toolbars, or search engines leading to suspicious webpages. Any...
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Cyber-threats in 2016: Evolution, Potential & Overcoming Them pt 2

previewThe First Step to Cybercrime Diagnosis: Accept your Infection!   This might sound like a healthcare discussion but the comparison actually makes sense. For a moment, relook at cyber threats—they are like a chronic disease, invasive and capable of rendering long-term damages. Ghostware or Blastware, you are looking at an IT infection that is carcinogenic, highly toxic and self-sustaining. Diagnosing it is not easy. By the time you realize that critical data has been leaked, hacked or accessed illegally, the damage has been done and little can be done to redeem the lost data or its integrity. A malware infection can...
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Is password length more important than complexity? A guideline for password creation policy.

Image care of WordPress Orange County, CA - I just read a summary of research on secure passwords vs. weak ones that get hacked. If you are looking to create your own secret password or if you are a network administrator looking to enforce secure password policy then read on. These results are from a study on 10 million passwords that have been breached in recent years. In summary, if you want a weak password, then use: Words Names Verbs Colors Animals Fruits “Love” phrases Superheroes And days of the week Leet speak, the act of using informal language or code in which standard...
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Cyber-threats in 2016: Evolution, Potential & Overcoming Them pt 1

previewThe contemporary business environment is essentially a small subsystem in the larger cyber world. Every enterprise, no matter how technically progressive or apprehensive about technology, is connected to and handles different streams of data. The current IT landscape is highly disruptive but it does promise better business outcomes for those who are IoT ready and ready to embrace Big Data. However, there are some apprehensions about this more connected, omnipresent and easily accessible data— it opens many doors to hackers, creating room for Cyberthreats to seep in. PWC’s Global State of Information Security Survey: 2015 underlined the seriousness of this pattern—...
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Welcome to our sponsor page!

Hi Everyone, Welcome to our sponsor page!  We look forward to meeting and working with the community in order to build relationships and make your business more successful by partnering together.  MySQL Enterprise Edition can reduce customer’s cloud expenses, protect them against security breaches and ensure that customers continue to meet their uptime and SLAs for public, private, and hybrid cloud deployments.  Please stay tuned for more info on our site and do not hesitate to reach out to use with any questions you may have.  -Nick   
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An experienced cyber insurance broker's reply to my blog

previewThis reply to my blog, Should I buy cyber insurance? is written by David McNeil, principal, of EPIC Insurance Brokers & Agents. He brings 20+ years of professional industry experience to the topic on cyber insurance. Some of Alvaka Networks' clients have been utilizing Dave's services for many years. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hi Oli, Always enjoy your insights and thoughts on Tech-related subjects.   Lately, the plethora of headlines regarding cyber-related issues has meant the interest in cyber-insurance has reached a new level. This is a huge topic and this comment can only scratch the surface. That said, a bit of an insider-view may...
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Should I buy cyber insurance?

A friend of mine asked me if he should buy cyber insurance for his business. Whether your need is for a self-hosted/owned, cloud or hybrid infrastructure this is not an easy answer. As I thought about it, I decided this is probably a topic of interest to many financial managers at small to mid-size enterprises. How should you decide this question and who can you seek for legitimate counsel that is qualified to answer this question without having a conflict of interest? I decided I am possibly one of the most qualified people, more so than the insurance broker, and I...
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Straight Answers to Your Customers’ Top 6 Private Cloud Computing Questions

“What do you mean you aren’t using private cloud? Everybody is migrating to the cloud these days.” Questions like this can make your customers cringe, especially if they have questions about what private cloud is but are afraid to ask them for fear of looking stupid. Here’s where you come in: There really is no such thing as a dumb question – and asking questions about private cloud computing before deciding whether or not to dive in is just good business. As a reputable, reliable cloud computing partner, you can help your customers navigate through questions like this – and find the answers they need to...
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Aldridge CEO to participate in Cloud Services Community Roadshow

Summary: Aldridge CEO, Patrick Wiley, will be a panelist for the Cloud Services Community Roadshow where he and two other cloud business owners will discuss how they make money in the cloud. Aldridge CEO, Patrick Wiley, will be a panelist for the Cloud Services Community Roadshow at the Dallas Tower Club on Thursday, June 23. The panel, “Where is the profit?” will include two other cloud business owners and will feature a discussion of how these entrepreneurs make money in the cloud.  The Cloud Services Community was started in September 2012 by Baptie and Co. The community grew out of a...
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When Will You Be Served ?

Ian Moyse,  Sales Director Axios Systems  Rated #1 Social Influencer on Cloud, #16 on IOT (Onalytica), Board Member Eurocloud   & Cloud Industry Forum   We often hear the buzzword phrases, Customer Service, Quality of Service (QOS) , Customer 1st, NPS (Net promoter Score), etc and the market both B2C and B2B has been constantly changing driven by more demanding customer expectations with the bar being set ever higher by new disrupters.  Take the age old example of Blockbuster video, a model and brand that was globally successful and known, quickly disrupted when newcomers set the defacto bar to be – download...
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Is Your Customer’s Recovery-as-a-Service (RaaS) Actually Recoverable?

“How recoverable are your customers, really?” Before you answer that question, it’s critical to know exactly what goes into recovery – from their virtual and physical environments to their data to their systems to their people. Without a holistic view of recovery, the next outage or incident could reveal some unwelcome surprises. The challenge today is that there are a lot of recovery-as-a-service (RaaS) providers in the market, all of whom are promising “recovery solutions.” But do they deliver? The fact is, there are various elements to recovery and not all providers address all those elements. The image below shows the...
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50 Questions You Must Ask Before Engaging In Cloud Computing Services

If you are selecting cloud computing services or if you want to improve your ROI in the cloud... it's more like 50 shades of gray then black and white. So, here are the 50 questions you’ll want to ask! Get the white paper with the answers to these questions and more when you join our group! Business Objectives – Identifying Why You Are Moving Into The Cloud 1. There are as many business objectives for the cloud as there are shades of any color, such as capex to opex budgeting, flexibility, agility, high availability, etc. Why do you want to move to...
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2016 Global Azure Bootcamp - New York

Global Windows Azure Bootcamp in New YorkLimited Spaces Available – Register Now!Global Azure Bootcamp is a training event that takes place at 200+ locations worldwide on Saturday April 16th 2016. We're happy to announce that Nimbo and Microsoft are sponsoring, catering and running the New York based Global Azure Bootcamp from Microsoft’s Office. WHAT IS WINDOWS AZURE BOOTCAMP?A one day deep dive class to help thousands of people get up to speed on developing Cloud Computing Applications for Microsoft Azure. In addition to this great learning opportunity, the hands on labs will feature pooling a huge global compute farm to perform research for...
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Sungard Availability Services – Not Your Father’s Disaster Recovery

Sungard Availability Services is honored to be the newest sponsor of the Cloud Services Community. As part of our sponsorship we’ll be sharing information, best practices and selling techniques that help you recommend and sell production and recovery cloud services plus managing applications in the cloud, such as SAP and Oracle. We are also looking to collaborate with the community on ways to help you enhance your services portfolio. What can Sungard AS do more of or differently to help you enhance your own cloud practice? What new products, services or other offerings can you provide that increase profitability and position...
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MSP's Adapt or Die

  Guilty to an Advantage: Cloud is Blurring the Line Separating IT Infrastructure & Business Operations From healthcare carriers to public sector entities, the last decade witnessed businesses investing heavily in enterprise applications to ease workflows and increase productivity and efficiency. Oracle acquiring PeopleSoft is a common example of this. The major problem with this strategy was the speed at which these strategic acquisitions quickly lost their relevance, sometimes never getting off the ground at all. The reason lies in the costs to support, maintain, and integrate these type of applications. Customers quickly found it was increasingly difficult to customize...
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  In today's World nearly half of the global population is online! As of 2015, 3.2 billion people were online with the global population standing at 7.2 billion (Source: International Telecommunication Union). With this comes additional reflections that around 1/5th have an active Facebook account (1.39 billion), Twitter runs at around 305 million penetration and Linked in has 414 million users, with Instagram just behind at 400 million in the same timeframe. Millennials and the Z generation have a high % uptake, having hardly known a time when social media was not in existence and taking it as a normal...
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