5 essential tips for backing up data

Tips for backing up data

Data backup should be a priority for every Australian business. Viruses, hardware failure, and accidental deletions are just a few ways that your files can disappear. Should the unthinkable happen, it doesn’t mean your business operations have to be severely impacted. Instead, take some practical steps to prevent the future loss of data. We’ve pulled together five of our best tips for effective data backup.

1. Setup automated backups

Manually backing up data is tedious and often gets overlooked. Instead, ensure that your files are automatically backed up regularly. If you’re unsure how to set this up, call our team to discuss backup solutions that provide peace of mind.

2. Understand what data is important

Take some time to analyse your files and decide what’s important and needs to be preserved. Anything you’re unable to recreate easily or can’t do without should be backed up.

3. Reduce risk with an offsite backup

It’s good practice to backup data locally, on a physical server, so that you maintain control of it. But keeping a copy of your files offsite will avoid headaches if the local backup fails or your hardware lets you down. Also, in the event of an office fire, you’ll be back up and running much quicker with an offsite copy of everything.

4 Encrypt backups

When backing up data offsite, send it as an encrypted version. If hackers ever access your files, they won’t be able to use them. Encrypting backups won’t require extra work once automated, and it is an excellent way to secure your data.

5. Verify backup success

Although backup systems usually verify success on completion, this isn’t a stone-clad guarantee. Be sure to run a restore test at regular intervals to ensure the files are recoverable if the need arises.

Data loss can cost a business time and money without an effective backup system. Keep it simple and automate processes wherever possible. Taking some risk-reduction steps in advance will ensure that your business has minimal disruption should the unthinkable occur. If you’re short on time, then check out our managed services that take care of the job for you.

How to choose the right tech for your startup

right tech for your startup

Gathering enough resources for that business idea you have taken years to develop cannot be complete without the inclusion of tech. Generally, contemporary businesses revolve around technology, so it takes the right tech to run your startup successfully. Check out this beginner’s guide for your startup business:

Choosing the right platform

If you want to choose a great platform for your product or service, consider whether it will be a good fit on mobile and/or web.

Sometimes, going for two platforms that can coexist is an even better decision as that helps to create a more flexible product. It’s easy to choose tech when you are starting up since you can build a complementary web page or app any time after launching the product. Advice from a local firm that provides small business IT services is vital here.

Note that going for a web app first is much safer, considering that web apps are more flexible and better when it comes to fixing errors. Also, they don’t have any Android/iOS cross-platform compatibility issues.

Choosing the devices

Your startup needs safe, reliable and powerful devices for handling clients and company data. So, for IT security and unwavering business continuity, here’s what we recommend:

Devices: From desktops and laptops to smartphones and tablets, make sure you start only with the number you need. This should include at least one well equipped desktop computer.

HR management software: Startups usually lack a fully-fledged human resource team. That’s where HR management software comes in. It can do nearly everything, for example, schedule employee shifts, send announcements, collect bank account data for direct deposits, etc.

Scheduling software: This tool can help you establish a strong presence for your startup on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. It will schedule and publish posts, interact and engage with your audience, monitor feeds, view analytics and more.

Video conferencing software: With the Covid-19 pandemic, video conferencing software is perfect for communicating with your remote team and meeting with clients, potential employees, consultants, etc. Remember to buy software with IT security in mind to keep hackers at bay.

If you need more details and help with equipping your startup business with the tools listed above, contact us for the best small business IT support in Melbourne and other cities across Australia.

3 ways a managed service provider can grow your small to medium sized business

grow your small to medium sized business

Many small to medium businesses are seeing the benefits of outsourcing their tech support to a Managed Services Provider (MSP). This IT support takes all the stress out of your IT servicing, is cost-effective and provides a proactive service that manages IT issues; improving productivity, deciphering between necessary and unnecessary upgrades and increasing cost-effectiveness so that you focus on what you do best – increasing business growth.

Improved productivity

By outsourcing your IT, you allow your employees to be more efficient in the office. An MSP refines systems and processes, keeping things up to date to guard against preventable IT problems. Working on an as-needed basis, you can contact your MSP as soon as a problem arises and leave the resolution to the experts. This improved office productivity enables your staff to focus on their tasks at hand.

Decipher between necessary and unnecessary upgrades

Without an MSP, it is tempting as a business to jump on board the best new technologies being offered. IT support providers are aligned with your business objectives and their industry knowledge can help you navigate around what new technologies are sustainable and financially efficient for your business, and what is simply unnecessary – saving you undue stress and costs.


MSP keep their staff regularly trained in ever-changing technologies and systems so that they can keep up with your needs and provide your business with the best service. This is more cost-effective than hiring a full time IT person to manage your systems in-house. Your IT support team should also be sending you periodic reports on risk, systems and servers specific to your small to medium business so that you can see what value they are adding.

Benefiting from outsourcing to a team of IT industry experts and drawing on their IT support as needed, allows your business to focus and grow. Through improving productivity, deciphering between necessary and unnecessary upgrades and increasing cost-effectiveness, a significant part of the business is being taken care of.

For reliable, efficient and effective IT support, contact Rapid IT Support so that we can discuss how we can best assist your business needs.

3 things to watch out for when trying to fix computer issues

trying to fix computer issues

Every computer owner at some point notices how the performance of their computer system decreases with time. It can be inaccessible internet, programmes running slowly, freezing, malware issues and many more. Not all computer issues especially complex ones need the owner to try and fix them. Looking for a professional IT service is always the right thing to do.

Most people who turn to DIY for computer solutions make the following mistakes:

Forgetting important basic checks

Many computer issues come from simple errors or mistakes that users make. For instance, people often mistake their sudden Wi-Fi signal loss for faulty Wi-Fi hardware or software. When in fact, they have accidentally switched off their Wi-Fi switch using the physical button whilst carrying their laptop around. People also assume the same when the monitor screen goes black whereas the monitor cable might have just wiggled loose.

Not using security software

It is unbelievable but true that some people don’t think that it’s necessary to protect their computer with security software. For others, these programmes use up a lot of system resources and also cause other programmes to load slowly or freeze. These are issues that can be solved by simply increasing RAM. Note that without using an anti-virus, you could trigger malware to damage your system while you’re trying to fix your computer by yourself, something a professional IT security provider won’t do.

Starting without backing up data

Beginning your computer repairs without backing up your important data is a serious mistake that will cause you to lose vital information. This includes passwords, financial records, essential images, videos and other documents. Our professional IT security managed services usually have offline and/or cloud backups for every valuable piece of your data.

We recommend that you contact our professional IT security support team to get the best managed IT services in Australia instead of fixing your own computer system problems by yourself. This is the ideal way to prevent costly damage, future issues and also save time. At our online-only IT helpdesk, we offer small to medium business computer support services. For more information or an appointment to fix your computer needs, contact our expert team today.

Types of computer infection and how they impact your computer

computer infection and how they impact your computer

Determining whether malware such as viruses, spyware, worms or Trojans have attacked your computer can be a daunting task. Authors of malicious software usually disguise their work sophisticatedly though signs of computer infections are identifiable. It’s useful to know the different types of computer infections and the ways they can negatively affect your computer, so let’s explore.

Types of computer infection

Viruses designed to infect computer systems

These viruses attack one computer after another through shared links as well as uploaded and downloaded files. When people link and share information carelessly without using a potent antivirus for protection, they spread these programmes to other users.

Spyware, adware and ransomware

Spyware is malicious software designed to attack your computer and collect sensitive data to forward to a third-party.

Adware is not really a malware per se, but it can become malicious and harm or slow your device down or even hijack your browser and install viruses.

Ransomware is a form of malware that blocks access to a computer system and threatens to publish sensitive data until a ransom is paid.

Worms similar to viruses

Computer worms are standalone malware computer programmes that duplicate themselves in order to spread to other devices. Worms typically use computer networks to spread themselves. They usually rely on security failures in the host computer to spread to other computers.

The impact of computer infections

Once a virus or malware infects your computer, the extent of the impact is based on the scope and type of infection. Below are a few possible negative effects of computer infections:

Slow performance: When malware infects your computer, the processing speed slows down. So, doing your usual work or checking a quick fact on your computer may begin to take an increasingly long time.

Loss of functionality: A virus-like Trojan can degrade the performance or programming of your computer to the extent of even damaging it permanently.

Exposure to other malicious software: Some malware is designed particularly to lure you into downloading even more malicious software.

Loss of information: Certain viruses end up deleting stored files or data in your devices, causing you to lose essential personal and company information.

Breach of privacy: Certain infections are there to gather your personal or company data such as bank or credit card information. Hackers steal your identity for fraudulent purposes like spending your money at your expense.

Whatever your personal or business computer IT security needs may be, our online-only IT Helpdesk is your go-to remote service to get the best 24 hours small business IT support and services in Australia.

3 ways to secure your virtual meetings from any intrusion

Hackers have found ways to wreak havoc on the remote business world. They now invade company virtual meetings if the remote systems have inadequate or no IT security protection. Keep on reading to learn three ways to secure your virtual meetings from any intrusion.

1. Choose a secure platform for your virtual meetings

With COVID-19, many companies and organisations are conducting virtual meetings for the first time. Some are making the mistake of using consumer-grade software with little IT security for business meetings. However, you can still use a consumer product but before that, do some research. If you find that it has adequate security protection and an excellent security response team to quickly solve any problems that may arise, go for it.

2. Create a password for entering the meeting

Making sure every participant of the meeting uses a password to log in, keeps hackers away. For instance, only Zoom meetings that do not require passwords to join can be auto-hacked by malicious programmes. Even a weak password of “1234” gives more protection than no password.

We suggest that only your internal team should know the password in use. You can take an acronym that is easy to remember and turn it into both an inside-joke and a password for the meeting platform. This strategy is better than using a password that requires copying and pasting because of its complexity. Besides, you shouldn’t be re-sharing such a password, as it lessens security.

3. Watch out for duplicate members and uninvited guests

Be watchful in order to notice when your meeting is being bombed by hackers even if they are disguised. Always check the attendant list for uninvited guests or guests who do not have a camera image. Keep an eye on cases of meeting member duplications, for instance, one or more members having two entries and two cameras during a meeting.

These hackers use clipped images, videos and at times digitally doubled videos which disguises them into glitching legitimate attendants. The best IT solution here is to boot and then ban such extra accounts.

For more information and strategies to keep your small to medium business virtual meetings secure everywhere in Australia, contact our online-only IT helpdesk professionals for enterprise-grade outsourced IT support services.

Setting up a new IT solution

new IT solution

As businesses change, so too should the technology that supports them. As your business grows, you should also consider a more robust IT package, to assist in being as efficient as possible. With your managed service provider, you can develop a plan of how to achieve this; in today’s article, we want to give a brief overview of this process.

1) Budget

Before considering specifics, you should consider what sort of financial outlay you are willing to make to set up your new IT solution. This is of critical importance since your managed service provider (who you should be consulting throughout the process) will have many ideas and needs to know what is financially feasible, and what is out of reach.

2) Consider goals

If you are a new business without an IT package, or an established business wanting to upgrade, the question should still be the same; “what do I want to achieve with my technology?” By answering that question, you can ensure that you set up a technology mix that meets those goals. For example, you may want your technology to track your stock or process sales invoices. In addition to hardware, you’ll need software that achieves this, and if you don’t consider this, you might end up unhappy with your solution. In extreme instances, this could cost tens of thousands of dollars as the process is restarted.

3) Consult with your MSP

As we suggested earlier, you should be consulting with your managed service provider throughout the process, but doing so at this stage is most important. This is where you will be making more specific decisions, such as what technology to buy, when it is going to be purchased, and how the implementation is going to occur. For example, you might want a staggered implementation, with new items being brought in overtime, or you might want to have everything installed over a weekend. What is best for you isn’t necessarily best for everyone, so you should consider your specific needs

4) Implement the plan, and have a backup

As explored in step 3, you should have a plan for implementation at this point, which should be actioned. The key though is to ensure that you have a backup / “Plan B” of some kind. This ensures that if something goes awry, you can still operate as a business, even if at limited capacity. This might be as simple as leaving one computer up and running throughout the implementation, separate from the rest of the network.


Implementing a new IT solution is tough, but absolutely possible. It is made easier by far when consulting experts, such as Rapid IT. If you have been considering an upgrade to your technology or you’re a new company looking for its first IT solution, give Rapid IT a call today, on 1300 727 430.

Top 3 things a managed service provider can do for you

managed service provider can do for you

As a managed service provider, Rapid IT is poised to help with an extremely wide variety of things that will help your business today. In this article, let’s go over 3 of the top benefits that an IT helpdesk can provide you.

Cost savings

IT support services are an expense, but would you have thought that they could make you money? For starters, being able to get back on your feet quickly is a blessing. A 2016 study suggested that the average cost of IT downtime across all businesses is about $9,000 per minute. So if a service like an MSP can get you back up and running as quickly as possible, that is surely an advantage. In addition, managed service providers can assist in creating more efficient processes using technology. If technology can help your business complete tasks even 10 or 20% faster, that’s effectively money in your pocket.


We can all agree that a small business of only a few employees is going to need a less complex IT solution than an organisation of tens or hundreds of employees. In this sense, an MSP is going to be perfect, since its services can scale according to your needs. Only need to get access to support services occasionally? That’s doable. Need to implement a new IT solution and work through that process with experts? Managed service providers can assist with that as well. That flexibility and scalability is a pivotal reason that a managed service provider isn’t just for one business type or size.


For those who didn’t grow up with technology, software can often be hard to use. To this end, managed service providers can assist in providing training packages to your staff. This can be especially valuable in the scenario where you have just implemented a new IT solution that includes a complex piece of software, such as an enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite. As experts in the field, your IT helpdesk can organise training accordingly and get your staff up to scratch.


Managed service providers perform a very wide range of services, and we have covered a suite of these in other blog posts. This article has covered the top three reasons – the ability to save you money, the fact that MSP services scale, as well as offering comprehensive training to staff. Can you afford not to hire an MSP? If you haven’t got an MSP yet, give Rapid IT a call today, on 1300 727 430.

How to learn more about computers

learn more about computers

At Rapid IT, computer tutoring is a service that we offer to everyone. That, along with self-teaching, can be extremely valuable ways to learn. Let’s discuss some key methods which you can implement in your office, or even personally, to learn more about IT services.

Identify needs

The first step to learning is by understanding what your organisation is going to need you to do in an IT context. For example, if your boss is looking for you to write emails all day, spending hours (and possibly money) on an Excel tutorial (a program for spreadsheets) is going to be fruitless. The opposite is of course also true. By identifying your IT needs, will lead to directed learning from the ground up. To achieve this, consider what your daily tasks are, and how these will be achieved through computer use. From there, learning materials can be found accordingly.

Start with the basics

Computers and IT generally are very much topics that you either know about, or you don’t; so there’s no shame in not knowing, but wanting to learn. If you really don’t know much about computers, be sure to start from the ground up. There are plenty of resources out there to help with this, and as an example of this, there is this basic course offered by GCF Global. This sort of information/training is perfect for a new hire who may not have had the opportunity to learn about computers, but is eager to get started.

In-person training

Having a trainer on-site to teach staff about computers or computer systems can be invaluable. This is especially true with industry-specific solutions, such as enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, which is often extremely complex for even experienced computer users. So, hiring a managed service provider, such as Rapid IT, to assist with training is going to speed along the learning process significantly. Being experienced in computer tutoring, managed service providers have heard it all before, and are amply prepared to help your staff be as efficient as possible.

Learning about computers when you don’t know much to start with can be extremely tough. However, by identifying key learning opportunities, starting by learning the basics, and enlisting expert assistance, it is indeed possible to learn a lot about IT services. For more information on this subject, or for anything else, get in touch with Rapid IT today, on 1300 727 430.

Why Windows Defender is perfect for small businesses

Windows Defender is perfect for small businesses

Windows Defender is a piece of anti-virus software that comes pre-installed with Windows 10. Being ‘free’ (since it comes with the operating system, which does need to be paid for), it is a very tempting option to use for your organisation’s IT security, but is it worth it? Price is the obvious benefit, so let’s discuss a few other reasons as to why we think that it is worthwhile, especially for smaller organisations.

Easy to use

Since Defender comes pre-installed on Windows 10 machines, the installation process is as simple as it gets, and it is enabled automatically. Its interface is easy to use as well, for both novices and IT professionals alike. Another advantage is that Defender comes with standard operating system updates.

Strong protection

Windows Defender offers protection against malware, so combined with Windows Security more generally, it helps to provide holistic protection. That being said, Defender received a perfect score from independent organisation AV Test [https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/business-windows-client/windows-10/june-2020/microsoft-windows-defender-antivirus-4.18-202513/]. This also, as an aside, included very low-performance impact as compared to the industry average, likely due to the integration with Windows itself. With it being a free product, having a fantastic protection rating is extremely heartening.

Limited reporting tools

For very small organisations, not having a detailed reporting system of threats and similar may be sufficient, since you may not be that interested in the granular detail. For medium or larger organisations though, having a more robust reporting platform is going to be valuable, and this is where Defender does fall short, since reporting capability is limited. Defender will tell you the status of past and present virus scans, but that’s it. If you are in a position where network security needs to be analysed, a more robust platform such as Kaspersky or Symantec is likely more suitable.


Windows Defender is a free anti-virus program which has an extremely robust anti-virus system. This also comes with an extremely easy to use platform, making it great for smaller organisations. However, for larger organisations that need reporting tools to properly defend their network, the solution will not be sufficient. If you want to customise Windows Defender for your needs, or if you think that you need a more complete security solution, get in touch with your local managed service provider, Rapid IT, on 1300 727 430.