Are you ready for Christmas?

A festive office deskAs we start winding down for Christmas, breaking out the egg-nog and succumbing to the distractions of last-minute gift shopping and Christmas parties, it’s important to make sure your business is ready for the festive break. Here are our top IT tips on how to safeguard yourself and your system against potential yuletide blunders.

Set up your autoreply
If the office is closing over the Christmas period, make sure all of your employees set up an ‘out of office’ autoreply, just in case any clients or business partners are working through the holiday season. If they try to get in touch, you don’t want them to feel like they’ve been ignored. An automatic reply letting them know when they can expect a response is an essential professional courtesy. It also means you won’t be frantically checking your inbox when you’re supposed to be playing charades with the family!

Beware the Christmas hackers
Believe it or not, Christmas is a very popular time of year for cybercrime, so it’s important to stay extra vigilant against email scams and viruses masquerading as festive cheer. In 1987, a seemingly-innocuous Christmas greeting known as CHRISTMA EXEC turned out to be an email-aware worm which went on to infect IBM’s network, forcing them to shut down 350,000 machines. Make sure your antivirus software is updating itself automatically while you’re away. This is also a good time to update your operating system, which will help to safeguard your network against new threats. After all, company-wide data recovery doesn’t make for a very happy new year.

Save energy
If you’re shutting up shop for Christmas, you may want to save energy, money and the risks associated with unsupervised electrical equipment by shutting down all non-essential devices such as monitors, printers, scanners and projectors.
Who’s backing up your data?
Christmas can get a bit confusing. Schedules will no doubt be changing left, right and centre, which means your back-up schedules might need changing too. Do you have a physical backup which is removed from the premises by members of staff, and if so, do they know who they are?

Who’s looking after things?
Is your IT being monitored while you’re away enjoying Christmas? Knowing that somebody’s keeping an eye on things will certainly give you peace of mind as you tuck into that turkey. In order to minimise downtime and ensure that no problems arise over the Christmas break, we monitor all of our clients’ networks and keep things running as they should.

If you have any concerns about how the Christmas break is going to affect your IT system, don’t hesitate to get in touch. As usual, we’re here to worry about your IT so that you can get on with what’s important – in this case, crackers, stuffing and mulled wine!