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As we start 2021, let’s reflect on all the changes 2020 has brought. Most of us are still scrambling to deal with the effect COVID-19 has had on our businesses. Supply chains were halted in place, and many of us found ourselves dealing with reduced revenue and staff.

In addition to that stress, researchers soon started to realize that these changes were leaving open unprecedented vulnerabilities, making our systems more accessible to hackers and malicious actors. The number of unsecured remote desktops increased by more than 40%, which quickly led to an incredible 400% increase in the number of attacks on them.

Our IT departments have been busy trying to implement IT solutions that close these gaps, in addition to their regular duties. However, if your IT infrastructure is vulnerable or if you don’t have a robust strategy, you’ll quickly find yourself playing catch-up rather than making sure your IT supports your business goals.

Let’s take a moment to get our IT systems in order and develop a proactive growth plan for the new year.

Our Top 5 2020 Takeaways

The Amnet team has already been busy this year, working with businesses all over Colorado Springs to help them develop the proactive IT solutions that have gotten them through this unique year. We’ve noticed the following 5 trends emerging this year, and we think they’ll only continue to impact more of the IT landscape in 2021.

Take a look at this list, then talk to your IT team and let us know if we can help you navigate any of these important IT topics in 2021.

Cybersecurity

One of the most important things that any proactive IT department should be paying attention to in 2021 is cybersecurity. Many bad actors have taken advantage of confusion and stress related to COVID-19 to gain access to sensitive data. In addition to remote protocol desktop attacks, email phishing has also increased, with one company finding a 667% increase in phishing scam attempts in March 2020 alone.

If you don’t want your company to be the next one to have to pay out millions in ransoms or lawsuits, you need to ensure your company is safe from these 3 key dangers:

  • Disruption: an overdependency on technology that is easily disrupted
  • Distortion: the spread of misinformation that makes it difficult to identify bad actors
  • Deterioration: the rapid elevation of technology security demands that make it easy to fall behind

A robust cybersecurity plan will help you stay safe from these evolving threats. If you don’t already have one or if it’s more than a year old, get in touch with an Amnet cybersecurity expert to help you bring it back up to speed.

Microsoft/Office 365

One of the easiest ways to make work simpler is to automate it with business applications you already have but aren’t using to their fullest potential. If you have a Microsoft Office 365 subscription, learning how to leverage every tool will ensure you’re not missing out on opportunities you’re already paying for.

If you’re not already using tools like Microsoft Teams or Outlook, we can help you by reviewing your business goals and recommending applications that will help you get there. With the help of a Microsoft Silver partner like Amnet, you can reduce your dependency on paper-based processes, which increases productivity, especially when your team is working remotely.

Business Continuity

With COVID-19 poised to be an ongoing disruption in 2021, businesses should be prepared for any eventuality. Although the Colorado fires didn’t quite make it to our area, it was a not-so-gentle reminder that many factors can disrupt your IT environment.

Many businesses rely on business continuity plans that are dangerously out of date and don’t take into account the rapid speed of business or the high costs of downtime. When was the last time you updated your business continuity plan? Before the new year, partner with experts from Amnet to create a new business continuity plan, test your existing one or adjust it until it’s perfect.

Cloud

A great way to help keep your business flexible and agile is to move it to the cloud. Cloud computing is poised to become the global standard, with 59% of tech buyers saying they plan to transition their company to the cloud, either mostly or entirely, within 18 months.

Despite its benefits, this is an area where many IT professionals lack experience. To reap the benefits of a cloud system, you should take a look at your current IT environment with an expert who can recommend the best solution and oversee the migration. Our cloud computing experts are always available to help you get started or monitor your system once it’s up and running.

Compliance

2020 may have changed the location and method of our work, but it hasn’t changed the compliance requirements in industries like healthcare, manufacturing or finance. If anything, it’s made adherence to these compliance processes and requirements more challenging, since the majority of workers are now working outside of a traditional office environment.

If you’re in healthcare, adherence to these standards is more important now than ever before. Enforcement in 2020 was at an all-time high, and that trend will only continue into 2021.

At Amnet, our experts are well-versed in IT compliance for many different industries and would be happy to give you support where you need it most.

Let Amnet Help Steer You into 2021

If you haven’t yet had time to unpack the changes that your company has gone through in 2020, now is a great time to start. By examining the challenges you faced, you can better prepare your IT strategy to cope with the ever-evolving landscape of 2021. Amnet has helped many small- and medium-sized businesses in and around Colorado Springs meet their IT challenges head-on. We can take on challenges your IT department is too busy to handle or stay behind the scenes by taking on key tasks like cloud migration. To get a comprehensive end-of-year checkup with an Amnet IT expert, call us today.

When It Comes To Your Business IT Systems, Don't Blindly Trust The First IT Guy You Meet.

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