Running a small business is undoubtedly stressful, yet it’s crucial business owners and employees find time to get away for a vacation from time to time, especially with Labor Day upcoming. A vacation can often turn into a “workcation” if critical customer and operational issues need to be addressed immediately. To this end, we have a few tech tips and tricks which will allow you to stay connected while “off the grid” and ensure your technology is reliable, cost-effective and safe.
The Technology Set Up
Taking a laptop on vacation without the proper set up could lead to a cyber security disaster. For example, a laptop may be left at an airline club table, or on a towel near the beach. While the intention is to have easy access to your hardware, bringing your technology on vacation and to unusual places leaves it vulnerable to be picked up or mined for information.
Protect your laptop by upgrading to the latest release of Windows 10, and ensure it is password protected. If possible, use a data back-up product like DropBox, which minimizes the amount of information that could be mined by thieves. Furthermore, products like DropBox allow you to wipe the correlating data remotely if stolen.
The Connection, Virtual Private Network (VPN)
Connecting to the internet via unknown networks while on vacation is risky. An easy way to access a secure connection is via a Virtual Private Network (VPN). VPNs create a secure connection between the laptop and a server in the cloud. It is almost impossible to hack this type of connection.
It’s also no longer necessary to purchase expensive hardware and software to create in-house VPNs. Sign up for a cloud-based VPN offering like Private Internet Access (PIA) or NordVPN.
For the international traveler, you should select a VPN that has servers in the countries where you will most likely be visiting. This ensures higher connection speeds, and you can configure the VPN to auto connect to a server in the U.S. to ensure easy application log-in.
Support for Small Business Owners and Employees to Stay Connected During Vacation
Technology issues happen, and when they strike it can easily turn into a desperate situation without the right IT support.
Most small businesses cannot afford to hire internal resources to provide 24/7 support to vacationing employees, especially factoring potential time zone differences.
Small businesses can consider finding remote-access, 24/7 on-demand IT support from companies like EVAN®, who can help traveling employees when in a pinch.
Sedana Beusch, CEO of CTS Travel supports the on-demand IT support system, saying “I was on a cruise in Alaska, when one of my clients became stranded in China. My PC wasn’t connecting to our business travel system over the internet. EVAN fixed the problem in less than ten minutes, and I was able to get my client home.”
Finding safe and reliable technology solutions for small business owners and employees to stay connected during vacation doesn’t have to be hard or expensive. Small business owners can enjoy time away whether the vacation becomes a “work-cation” or not.
Fifteen years ago, Bill Aimone joined the partnership of Deloitte Consulting. One of the perks of being a partner at the world’s largest professional services firm was having a hotline access to IT support. Time was money for the partners and ensuring immediate access to IT assistance was paramount. Fast forward 8 years and Bill left Deloitte to co-found Trenegy, a management consulting firm. Finding IT help for the cadre of consultants at Trenegy was difficult. After frustrating cycles through various managed services firms and frazzled independent IT guys, IT support was brought in-house. The epiphany came as we thought, “what if we had an on-demand IT support model for small businesses? Then small businesses can get the same level of support only afforded by Big 4 partners at a lower price!” This epiphany was the genesis of EVAN®. Today, Trenegy and many other small businesses are getting the IT support they deserve.