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Complacent Colorado: Now Thinking About Disaster Preparedness and Business Continuity

Fires raging just west of Colorado Springs have really brought disaster preparedness to the forefront here. In Colorado Springs, we are pretty insulated from most disasters. We are too far inland for hurricanes and big earthquakes. We don’t get tornadoes like the mid-west. We get a little snow here, but it has been fifteen years since we had a decent blizzard so we Coloradoans get a little complacent about disasters and disaster preparedness.

As of today, the Waldo Canyon Fire has consumed nearly 6,000 acres and is only 5 percent contained. While no homes or businesses have been destroyed (yet), entire cities and neighborhoods have been forced to evacuate. Highway 24 west of town has been shut for days and one of my employees lives on the other side of the roadblock. He was able to go 80 miles around the roadblock to get a hotel in town.

What if your business building was intact, but the police or fire department was going to keep you out of it for days or even weeks? Could you still serve your customers? Probably not, if you own a restaurant, retail store or hotel. Of course, that answer varies depending on what type of business you have and whether or not you have remote access.

Does your insurance cover a situation like this? Loss of Business Income Insurance does not typically cover your financial losses in this situation unless your structure is damaged which caused your losses. You may want to add this coverage if this is concern to you.

Picture Taken Yesterday from the Interstate Near My Home

Here are some questions that you should ask yourself and then document your answers as part of your business continuity plan.

What would you need to do in the first 24 hours, after 3 days, after one week? These answers will probably be different.

What are some likely scenarios? Start with these.

What are some extreme scenarios? Don’t leave these out, but certainly cover the likely ones first.

What documentation have you done of your business assets and IT infrastructure?

Do you have a process to contact your clients and your staff?

What would you tell your staff to do?

Who has access to your Business Continuity Plan if you are unavailable?

This is just a short list of questions to get you thinking. Remember, everything you do before a disaster strikes determines the likelihood of remaining in business after the disaster.

These homeowners were evacuated at 1:00 a.m. the night the fire started. What would you grab? What would you leave?

Tags: Technology


If you think your business is too small to be of interest to cyber hackers, think again. A new trend in cyber crime shows hackers are targeting small businesses because of their lack of security protection. According to an article in The Colorado Springs Business Journal, cyber criminals are hacking into small business computers for client information, money and control of computer systems to help them commit crimes. If your company does business over the internet, or is on the internet, it is a potential victim of cyber crime.

How can this affect your business?
  •         Litigation – If you have any proprietary client information on your system and it gets compromised, you face a huge financial liability. Court rulings on cyber crime hold companies liable for the information stolen from them. If a court determines your company was negligent in protecting client information you are responsible for any damages caused.
  •          Damaged Reputation – Colorado law states any company that has been a victim of cyber crime must notify the clients whose information was stolen. Not only is this process costly to your business, but it damages the trust built between your business and the client.


Outsourced IT departments, like Amnet, ensure that your systems are protected from viruses, spam, malware, Trojan horses and all the other invasive technologies that brilliant but devious minds come up with. Contact Amnet for a full assessment of your office systems, your vulnerabilities to current and future threats, and most importantly, how to protect yourself, your company and your clients from cyber crime.
*For more information, and to read the entire article see: Cyber Attacks Spawn Niche Business Opportunities


Tags: Technology

Outlook Autocomplete

If you’re a regular Outlook user, you know that when you compose a new email message, when you start typing in the To: box, Outlook will try to complete the address for you. Here is an example:


Use Remote Geeks To Your Benefit

If you’ve used recent versions of Internet Explorer, perhaps you have noticed that there is a feature called InPrivate Browsing. If you haven’t seen it, in Internet Explorer, you can tap your ALT key and go to Tools and you should see an option for InPrivate Browsing:


Use Remote Geeks To Your Benefit

Most of us have a friend or family member that is a whiz at solving computer issues. Unfortunately, that person is not always available or nearby to give you the assistance that you need. Instead of lugging that computer down to your local PC shop to show them a problem, wouldn’t it be great to just be able to reproduce the problem you’re experiencing and then send that to your friend for them to look at when they’re available? With Windows 7, it’s incredibly easy to do this!


Fixing the Blue Screen of Death

When your computer misbehaves, it’s often challenging to put into words exactly what transpired with your computer. Many people tell support their system blue-screened when an application only hung. Others may say that their computer crashed, when it just froze up. So, what is the difference between all of these bad behaviors?


Using PDFs

At one time or another, you’ve most likely opened a PDF file. A PDF document is a file format developed by Adobe that is independent of software, hardware, or operating systems. This means that if you open a PDF file on your Windows 7 computer at home, it should look the same if you open it on your iPad or your Android phone.


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