Protecting Your Business with Anti-Ransomware Software


Anti-Ransomware Software: Protect Your Phoenix Metro Arizona Business

We’re in a digital era, but keep in mind that it’s a double-edged sword. There’s a lot of good with digitization, but unlike in the past, cyber-attacks are more frequent and sophisticated. Ransomware is among the most devastating of cyber-attacks, with the potential for significant damage to a Phoenix area business. But how can Arizona businesses defend against ransomware attacks? Usually, the answer is anti-ransomware software.

A ransomware cyber-attack can halt operations and compromise sensitive data. The resulting cost to the businesses could run into thousands of dollars to regain access to encrypted files.

But is the software a competent safeguard on its own against ransomware attacks? We explore more on the topic.

How Does Anti-Ransomware Software Work?

Anti-ransomware software is among the cybersecurity tools designed to protect against ransomware attacks. This program works by monitoring your network and computer for suspicious activity that could indicate the presence of ransomware. When such attacks are detected, the software immediately stops the attack in its tracks. 

But how does the anti-ransomware software detect ransomware attacks? The answer is the use of signature-based detection and behavioral analysis techniques. 

Signature-based detection is a fancy way of saying “programming.” The anti-ransomware programming is designed to compare the code of a file or program against a database of known ransomware signatures. When the program scans the files and programs and any of the code matches any of the signatures in the known ransomware database, the software will block the program or file from executing.

Because this aspect of the software relies on a database of known ransomware, it is crucial that the ransomware software is updated routinely so it always has the most current database of known ransomware.

The other aspect of anti-ransomware software is behavioral analysis. The anti-ransomware software analyzes the behavior of the files and applications on your computer or network. It looks for patterns that are consistent with ransomware attacks. This could include increased network traffic and sudden changes in file encryption. If it strides like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it’s definitely a duck!

When anti-ransomware software detects suspicious activity, the next step is to prevent the ransomware from infecting your computer or network. This could involve quarantining the affected files. The software can also stop the ransomware process or even shut down the entire system to prevent further infection. 

The Benefits of Anti-Ransomware Software

Using anti-ransomware software comes with its advantages. For example, it can prevent unauthorized encryption of important files and keep your data safe from cybercriminals. Preventing encryption is a vital safeguard because once your files are encrypted, there’s no way around it except to pay the ransom. 

On the other hand, anti-ransomware software helps you avoid the reputational and financial costs associated with a ransom attack. Your reputation is the currency for customer loyalty and should be guarded at all costs. Therefore, preventing a ransom attack can save your business tens of thousands of dollars and a potential loss of customer trust and goodwill. 

The Limitations of Anti-Ransomware Software

Keep in mind that anti-ransomware software is not the silver bullet. Undoubtedly, anti-ransomware software is an essential component of a layered cybersecurity plan, but it’s not foolproof. 

Skilled hackers can find ways to infiltrate a computer or network through other means. For example, they can exploit vulnerabilities in outdated software or use social engineering tactics to trick employees into inadvertently downloading malicious software. When a skilled hacker figures out how to get behind your anti-ransomware software, they can deploy their ransomware attack undetected.

So, what do you do? 

In addition to the anti-ransomware software, implement multiple layers of security measures as well. Ensure regular software updates and employee training. Also, implement intrusion detection systems, a Security Operations Center, Application Whitelisting, and more. All these measures can significantly reduce the risk of a successful ransomware attack on your establishment. 

Ransomware attacks can be devastating for Arizona businesses. However, anti-ransomware software can help protect your business from ransomware attacks. But keep in mind that anti-ransomware software may not be effective in isolation. Instead, implement all 15 cybersecurity measures for more comprehensive protection for your business. 


AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies of Mesa, AZ, is a leading provider of Managed IT services and technology solutions for businesses. AZCOMP’s mission is to help enterprises to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase cybersecurity through innovative tech solutions.

AZCOMP Technologies has provided technology solutions and services to businesses since 2000. AZCOMP employees offer our services in Mesa, Tempe, Scottsdale, Chandler, Phoenix, Glendale, Apache Junction, Queen Creek, San Tan Valley, and Gold Canyon. Request your IT consultation today!

Affordable IT Services in Arizona

IT Services

A Local AZ IT Services Company that Offers Affordable IT Services

In an increasingly digitized world, technology has become the extra limb for your Arizona business, regardless of size or industry. Your business gets more done with technology – more employee productivity, more sales, effective delivery, and efficient operations. IT services can help streamline these processes. 

A better working technology gives your business a much-needed competitive advantage in your industry. But there are times when technology may not work for you as expected. 

For example, technology may get in the way or cause time wastage and frustrations because of persistent IT issues. In such a case, IT acts as a barrier and hurts your business. 

Ways That Businesses Address Their IT Needs

Some of the ways Phoenix Metro Arizona businesses address their IT needs fall into four categories: 

● You may have hired an employee for a role other than IT, but the individual doubles up as the “IT guy” because they are “pretty good with computers.” 

● You hire an employee who is either trained or not trained to act as your dedicated, on-staff “IT guy.” 

● You outsource third-party IT services from a company or individual, or 

● You use some combination of the first three mentioned options

A logical argument can be made that the first 2 options are the least cost-effective and have the worst results. Sometimes, the on-staff “IT guy” might be the business owner or the president, making it an even more costly option. IT management is sensitive and time-intensive, so there may not be enough time to do it effectively. 

Our case study of an OB-GYN clinic in Gilbert, AZ, in 2019 had owners doing all the IT stuff independently. However, they had HIPAA compliance and cyber security concerns, and various issues affected their productivity. The staff at the clinic were spending too much time troubleshooting and attempting to solve the problems with the IT hardware and software. 

The third option may seem like the safer bet, but it could also turn out bad when outsourced to the wrong company or individual. Just because an outsourcing firm offers the cheapest services doesn’t mean they are the best or will benefit your business. 

Picture this:

● Suppose one IT services company provides IT services to your business for $500 per month, but your employees are still unproductive. In that case, your security posture is still weak, and nothing has improved for your business. Is that $500 well spent?

● Suppose a different IT services company provides IT services to your business for $2000 per month, but your employees are now productive with the technology. In that case, security is improved, and your business is noticeably more efficient and effective due to the enhanced technology process. Is that $2,000 a better value than the $500?

What Your IT Professional Should Do for You

The IT personnel play a vital role in the success and continuity of the business. But what do they do, or what should they do?

The IT consultant or manager ensures your computer systems work efficiently and effectively. As a result, they ensure other employees work smoothly and productively on their computers without headaches. 

It is up to them to limit disruptions, downtimes, and lost productivity due to poorly managed or faulty tech. 

If there are faulty tech or systems, the IT staff should assess the risks and determine the best way to address them cost-effectively. It is the job of your IT team to keep track of everything and ensure the systems and hardware are well-maintained and up-to-date. 

Your IT staff should make the work of crucial managers easy because they’re not spending a lot of time deliberating on IT issues. They should identify problem areas, new or current risks, new solutions, and areas for improvement. Your IT people should prepare a plan or a budget and implement the project. Their primary role is to make IT better and better and better.

In summary, it boils down to these 6 points:

● Reduce IT Frustrations:

Better working IT systems and infrastructure is an asset for any Arizona business. However, the people working on such systems are as important. Getting someone to handle your systems and infrastructure because they’re “pretty good with computers” is never enough. It is a recipe for IT frustrations and can hurt your business. 

Before we became their outsourced IT partner, the staff at the Lily of the Valley OB-GYN clinic in Gilbert, AZ, were not tech-savvy, and issues with the equipment would cause frustrations and delays. These frustrations would spill over to patients and reduce their service satisfaction. 

So, does your IT provider ensure the systems are working effectively and efficiently to support productivity? If not, they’re not helping your business, and you must rethink your IT strategy. 

● Improve Employee Productivity:

Like others, your business looks to continually improve productivity to grow and succeed in an increasingly competitive market. Good working IT systems and support are the foundation of such productivity. 

Therefore, investing in technologies, tools, and IT support can automate repetitive tasks and streamline workflows. Your employees can then focus on strategic and more important issues, which increases their productivity. 

● Enhance Operations:

You can achieve business growth by enhancing operations, and your choice of IT support services has a big say. When technology and tools are used right, businesses can optimize processes, automate routine tasks and streamline operations. Qualified IT staff can help implement enterprise resource planning (ERP) tools for inventory, supply chain, and financials. Or even customer relationship management (CRM) to track sales, automate marketing campaigns, and manage customer interactions. 

Combining tools and IT services can reduce costs and improve operational efficiency. They can also help your business make better decisions based on real-time data. 

● Better Customer Service: 

Your customers are the lifeline for your business, and the goal is to establish long-lasting relationships with clients. Unlike in the past, customers now have higher expectations of the quality of customer service you offer. They expect the service to be responsive, fast, and personalized across multiple channels. 

But how can your business achieve this? 

By leveraging technologies that offer seamless customer experiences, such as social media, chatbots, and mobile apps. Efficient IT support services can ensure you use customer feedback tools correctly and securely. This helps you measure customer satisfaction and point out areas for improvement. 

● The Burden of IT Management is Removed from the Owner:

IT issues can take a considerable chunk of your time which you should use in other vital areas. But by outsourcing your IT management, you leave the technical aspects to experts, and you can shift your focus to other core competencies. Competent IT service providers can manage IT networks, infrastructure, and systems, ensuring they’re up-to-date, secure, and functioning correctly. You can therefore improve system reliability and reduce costly downtimes. 

● Predictable IT Expenses:

Not knowing how much it will cost you to keep the IT systems working can be a source of anxiety. On the other hand, managed IT services with flexible pricing and custom services can help you budget and plan effectively. Your IT expenses become predictable, and you avoid unpredictable costs such as IT emergencies and downtimes. You can then invest in IT infrastructure to take your business to the next level. After all, you know that no IT issue will surprise you, and you can only go up. 

Dedicated in-staff personnel that most often fulfill all the above roles are not budget-friendly. That’s where managed IT services come in. 

Why You Need Managed IT Services

One of the reasons the popularity of managed IT services is busting in popularity is its cost-effectiveness and efficiency in technology management. 

The affordability of IT services is a significant issue for small businesses with limited resources. The cost of hiring a full-time IT employee or outsourcing the services can be pretty prohibitive to some companies. So, what do you do? 

AZCOMP Technologies is a local IT services firm that prides itself in affordable IT services to small and medium businesses in Phoenix and surrounding areas.

AZCOMP Technologies – Providers of Affordable IT Services

Affordable and quality IT services for your business are not always readily available; if they are, they may not be the best fit for your business. So why choose AZCOMP Technologies?

● Affordability: AZCOMP Technologies have been providers of cost-effective and efficient solutions for businesses for a long time. While it doesn’t necessarily mean that our services are the cheapest, we offer the best value at a fair price. 

We achieve all the objectives of what an IT manager should do, so we have a process for doing it well. This means we achieve good results and can repeat the process with any company – predictable results every time. It doesn’t mean we’re cheap, but we deliver exceptional results at a fair price. Our range of managed IT services is available at competitive prices to help your business get the most out of technology investments. 

Our managed IT services use the best team of qualified IT professionals who do away with the cost of hiring full-time IT personnel. Our pricing options are flexible, transparent, and straightforward. There are no hidden fees because we aim to help your business achieve its objectives and goals while keeping your IT infrastructure reliable, secure, and efficient. 

● Expertise: we have a dedicated team of qualified IT professionals who provide customers with the highest level of service and support. AZCOMP Technologies works with businesses of all sizes, from startups to huge corporations. We pride ourselves on offering customized IT solutions that meet your business’s unique needs. Our expertise and professionalism have kept our clients happy and confident about their IT and business. 

● Proactive IT management: working with AZCOMP benefits your business in various ways, including a proactive approach to IT management. That means we take action before something happens that affects your IT systems. The result is fewer disruptions, less downtime, and increased productivity. 

● A range of other IT services: AZCOMP’s services available to your business include data backup and recovery, network security, cloud computing, and more. We ensure that your IT infrastructure is reliable, secure, and efficient. We aim to help you leverage technology cost-effectively to achieve your goals and objectives. 

● 24/7 support: we understand that IT issues don’t wait for work hours to happen. You don’t have to suffer through the weekend or the night before you can get IT solutions. AZCOMP support is available throughout so you can reach out in case of any challenge or query. We provide regular reports and updates to keep you in the loop about our progress and ensure you get the most from our services. 

So, are you after affordable IT services for your business and quality, proactive, and professionally managed IT services?  

Contact us at AZCOMP Technologies today to learn how we can help you with your IT infrastructure to achieve your goals and objectives. 

About AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies of Mesa, AZ, is a leading provider of technology solutions and services for businesses of all sizes looking to automate their processes. AZCOMP’s mission is to help enterprises to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase cybersecurity through innovative tech solutions.

AZCOMP Technologies has provided technology solutions and services to businesses since 2000. AZCOMP employees provide our services in Mesa, Tempe, Scottsdale, Chandler, Phoenix, Glendale, Apache Junction, Queen Creek, San Tan Valley, and Gold Canyon. Request your IT consultation today!

Phishing Scams Exposed: How to Keep Your Data Secure

Phishing Scams - Secure Data

How to Keep Your Data Secure From Phishing Scams

“Congratulations, Tom! Your Lucky Number 73789 was drawn. Get your iPhone 14 here: <URL>”

Chances are that you’ve also received an email or text message saying you’ve won a contest or prize. But could you be so lucky to win something you never entered? No! Don’t fall for it! It’s a phishing scam!

These types of mail and text messages are sent out with a hidden agenda, which is to steal your personal information. They then use the information for malicious purposes.

Sadly, many people become victims of these scams.

The cybercriminals may ask for your bank information or Social Security number, claiming to verify your identity. In reality, they are collecting these to sell on the dark web.

Phishing Scams Affect Businesses as well

Phishing scams affect not only individuals but also businesses in the Phoenix metro area. Symantec Security Center estimates that the average employee will receive at least two scam emails every week. That means an organization with 10 employees would be targeted more than 1000 times within a year!

But does it mean employees are too trusting online?

Not exactly! All it takes is one click to open the network to various cybercrime attacks. That one click tells the sender the account is active, and they can focus more on spam and attacks.

In the worst-case scenario, a single click could download spyware, ransomware, or virus that compromises an entire network. This could result in recording passwords and other login information to access bank accounts and client databases. The employee could also enter sensitive information into a scammy website that appears legit.

The US Small Business Administration estimates that these attacks cost small businesses over $2.8 billion in damages in 2020. Verizon says the costs were up to $653,587.

What can Businesses do to Safeguard themselves from Phishing Scams?

Not having sufficient protection and proper training can be disastrous for any business. Preventive measures can prevent millions in losses and keep your business running.

Wouldn’t these preventative measures cost an arm and leg?

Indeed, there are easy and free ways to protect your business and employees from phishing scams and other cyber risks. These measures include:

  • Employee awareness: make sure all your employees are aware of scams in general. Have them read articles like this to make sure they understand what a scam is. You’d be surprised how many adults are naïve about scams.
  • Employee training: properly training your staff about cyber threats and the best practices for a safer online workspace can significantly reduce the risks of an attack. Your employees should be taught how to be vigilant and recognize signs of a scam email.
  • Technical solutions: Technical solutions such as prohibited access to illegitimate sites and spam blocking can play a vital role in keeping your business safe. While most email providers offer built-in spam filters, additional protection measures are essential.
    • Other protection measures include antivirus software, firewalls, and intrusion detection systems.
  • Ensure network security: You can significantly reduce the risk of a cyber-attack by keeping the hardware and software up to date. Conduct penetration audits and regular security audits to point out any threats.

Best Practices You Can Implement for Your Employees

Your employees should be educated on identifying suspicious emails, attachments, and links. Provide them with guidelines on steps to take when they encounter suspicious emails and activity.

Some of the best practices your establishment should implement include:

  • Verification of the sender: The employee should first verify the sender before they can open the email. Check the sender’s email, and contact them through a different channel just to be sure.
  • Be extra cautious with emails requiring personal info: emails requesting banking information, social security number, and credit card details should be treated with a pinch of salt.
  • Never click on suspicious links: All staff members should be advised never to click on any attachments or links inside the email from unknown sources. Phishing scams capitalize on malicious attachments and links to hook victims and collect personal information.
  • Anti-spam filters can filter out or block unwanted or suspicious emails and keep their inboxes clutter-free.

Cyber threats are a genuine concern for any Arizona business, and staff awareness is vital to ensure a safe and secure workspace. At a minimum, employees know how to identify cybersecurity risks and what they should do. Conduct regular training and implement technical solutions to secure the data and systems.

The cost of a cyberattack is much higher than that of technical solutions and proper employee training. Simple preventative measures can prevent business closure. It’s a simple choice, really!

To see how to stop being a sitting duck and instead take control of your security, simply call AZCOMP, and we’ll walk you through your options.

About AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies opened its doors in 2000 and has been providing managed IT services to companies across industries in Phoenix, Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert, Tempe, and Scottsdale. Most of our time is spent working on our client’s computers and networks to prevent unexpected interruptions and cyber risks. We ensure organizations do business with peace of mind.

Contact us today for more information about managed IT services in Phoenix.

Maximize Your Medisoft Experience

Medisoft Software

Maximize Your Medisoft Experience: 6 Benefits of Switching to the Medisoft EDI Clearinghouse

With so many variables to consider, independent medical practitioners are walking on eggshells when making decisions that affect their practices. There is so much complexity to running a medical practice, and Medisoft can help!

For example, costs are increasing, and it feels like getting squeezed from all sides. So, medical practices must ensure they have mastered their billing processes to get reimbursed on time. But this is not always the case. There are challenges!

Most medical billers may find it challenging to manage claims and reimbursements efficiently. This is where a state-of-the-art clearinghouse like Medisoft EDI can make all the difference.

What is Medisoft EDI clearinghouse?

Medisoft EDI is a cutting-edge clearinghouse fully integrated with Medisoft billing software. With Medisoft EDI, billers can access tools unavailable with any other clearinghouse. As a result, the claims management process is much faster and more efficient.

Unlike other clearinghouses, billers can use Medisoft EDI to perform all major billing functions within Medisoft. The benefit is that medical practices can increase revenue and avoid costly mistakes.

At AZCOMP Technologies, we’ve helped thousands of medical practices maximize their billing process since 2000. We’re proud to offer Medisoft EDI, the clearinghouse explicitly designed to work seamlessly with Medisoft.

Medisoft EDI will help you verify eligibility faster, submit claims more quickly, manage rejections or denials easier, get reimbursements faster, and improve your cash flow.

Top 6 Reasons You Want Medisoft EDI for your Clearinghouse

Top 6 Reasons to Switch to Medisoft EDI

So, how does switching to Medisoft EDI benefit your medical practice? Here are six good reasons:

1.   Automated Eligibility Verification

With Medisoft EDI, eligibility verification is automatic and can run directly from the appointment scheduler. This means that patient demographics are automatically provided for new charts, eliminating the need for manual data entry.

Medisoft EDI allows you to schedule eligibility batches, which run on a routine basis without any manual intervention required. This feature allows you to check the patient’s eligibility without making phone calls or visiting different websites. The result is reduced time and effort needed to manage the eligibility verification process.

2.   Claims Sent Directly from Medisoft

Unlike other clearinghouses, Medisoft EDI allows a one-click direct claims submission from Medisoft. No need to log into another website or download batch files and then upload them to external websites – it’s all done automatically without leaving Medisoft.

The one-click submission feature significantly reduces the time and effort required to manage claims. You get more work done in a shorter period.

3.   Reports Automatically Download into Medisoft

Medisoft EDI automatically generates and downloads reports into Medisoft. There’s no manual intervention required. In other words, you won’t have to log into another website, download reports, and then upload them to Medisoft. This feature saves you time and effort and allows you to focus on other essential tasks.

4.   Claim Status Automatically Updates in Medisoft

One of the most frustrating aspects of claims management is waiting to find out whether a claim has been rejected.

With Medisoft EDI, claim status is automatically updated in Medisoft, so you’ll know immediately if a claim has been rejected. Automatic claim updates help you stay on top of the claims process to ensure you can take action quickly if a claim is denied.

5.   ERA Files Automatically Download into Medisoft for Electronic Posting

Electronic Remittance Advice (ERA) files can be challenging to manage, particularly if you have multiple accounts in Medisoft.

Medisoft EDI automatically downloads the ERA files and separates them by account. This eliminates the need for manual separation of data – ERA reports automatically show up within Medisoft. Just 1-click to review the ERA, and 1 more click to post all the payments and adjustments to all patients associated with that ERA file. With this feature alone, your staff will save hours.

6.   Complete Portal Visibility and Other Online Features

In addition to the above features, Medisoft EDI offers a range of other online features that can help you manage your claims more efficiently. For example, you can access a timely filing letter template to ensure that claims are submitted on time.

The Patient Responsibility Estimator and Denial Manager tools are also incredibly helpful. These tools make managing your claims easier and ensure you get paid quickly.

These are the 6 biggest ways to save time and increase productivity. But there is much more to Medisoft EDI than these 6 simple bullet items.

Overall, Medisoft EDI offers a range of features that aren’t available in any other clearinghouse. By simplifying the claims management process and reducing the time and effort required to manage claims, Medisoft EDI can help you increase revenue and improve your practice’s bottom line.

If you would love to know more about how Medisoft EDI can help your practice, contact AZCOMP Technologies today to schedule a demo and get a custom quote for your business.

Possible meta tag description:

Looking to reduce rejections, improve cash flow, and get paid faster for your medical practice? Switching to Medisoft EDI, a fully integrated clearinghouse, can save you time and increase revenue. As a Medisoft user, find out why Medisoft EDI is the better option for your practice and contact AZCOMP Technologies for a custom quote and demo.

Maximize Employee Productivity AND Satisfaction With This 3-Step System

Unlock Maximum Productivity AND Satisfaction

Chances are that you’ve come across the phrase, “Get with the program!” It’s a common term used to get individuals to align with how things should be done at the establishment. Of course, there’s always a way that things should be done to ensure consistency in productivity. You can call them the best practices.

Unfortunately, most Phoenix Metro businesses (small and big alike) lack a straightforward program for the staff to follow. The result is inconsistent and unsatisfactory results. Both employer and employee get frustrated, and productivity suffers.

With rising inflation, bank failures and a turbulent stock market the current economic environment is not at its best.As a result, businesses should ensure all their employees are “with the program” by doing what they should do to optimize results. There’s no longer a place for hires that aren’t “with the program.”

What it Means to Get with the Program

For most people, a program sounds like a strict step-by-step manual for every little task. But that’s not the case. A program involves a well-thought-out and clearly-communicated set of expectations and results for every staff member. It’s more in line with a job scorecard.

For example, the reception’s central role should not be restricted to answering calls to the business and ushering in visitors. It’s more than that. The receptionist must be the director of first impressions. They should ensure that all prospects and people calling the office get the best image of the business. The callers shouldn’t get lost in the phone tree maze.

Most Phoenix Metro businesses may ask their new hires to the receptionist role to ‘just answer the phone.’ But anyone can do that, even those with no idea about the intricacies of customer service. How often have you asked to speak with sales, or customer service, only to be left enraged? You get the idea! It’s not about who can do the job but who can do it as it should be done. That’s where a scorecard comes in!

In a nutshell, a job scorecard provides the most straightforward mission definition for any position. It also defines the key results to be achieved and their specific responsibilities.

The Job Scorecard

As mentioned, how a job scorecard defines a role is typically three-pronged:

  • Based on the position’s mission: why does the position exist? Is it to delight customers, grow sales, or ensure repeat business? This is your starting point before you start filling positions.

The benefit of knowing the position is that it eliminates ambiguousness. Employees understand the bigger picture and their role in the company’s success. Why should they report to work daily, year in and year out? Does it mean something to work for your business?

  • Based on the key results: once you identify the mission, the next step is to articulate the key results. What should your personnel achieve? And is it measurable? As Peter Drucker famously said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.”  

For sales and marketing professionals, securing a certain amount of new sales or generating a certain number of leads might be the result. They’re measurable. For example, secure $500,000 in sales for the first quarter.

For customer service representatives, quantifiable results might be something like a decrease in canceled services. It could also be increased upgrades or subscriptions after an encounter with the customer representatives.

Everyone understands what they need to do to succeed in their role and how far they are from achieving it. The key result for leaders is hitting profitability and revenue targets. When goals are quantifiable, the drama or disagreements in performance evaluations reduces or is no longer there.

  • Based on responsibilities: particular responsibilities define the tasks, actions, and duties that every employee must fulfill. Well-defined responsibilities are vital for the smooth running of operations. It prevents a case of overbooked tasks and dropped balls. The workers understand what’s expected of them, and it serves as motivation to achieve the desired results.

Once you have the scorecards and roles, share them with the entire team to create a culture of accountability.

For our business, we are leveraging a dashboard tool called BrightGauge to help us with our scorecard. BrightGauge connects directly to our main business management software and gives us real-time statistics to measure our performance. With this, most team members have a way to see their results easily and then easily report to the whole team  every week.

We simply use an Excel spreadsheet located on our company SharePoint site. That way all employees can access the sheet and enter their metrics for that week. On Tuesday of every week, our designated team member sends a broadcast email to all employees at AZCOMP with the summarized report for our element of team accountability. It’s simple that way.

Your business can do something like this too. We understand that all businesses are not made equal, so we offer customized solutions. When we have IT strategy sessions with our clients, we help discover the best collaboration tools and strategies to unlock maximum productivity.

Your success as a business depends on a straightforward program that everyone follows. It’s vital that everyone ‘gets in line!’ We’re talking about a job scorecard to define the mission, key results, and particular responsibilities. This is a success factor.

Your business could benefit significantly from the collaboration tools. Keep everyone on track and accountable today. Contact us at AZCOMP for a personalized consultation to help you explore and leverage the various tools for productivity.

About  AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies Mesa, AZ, is a leading provider of managed IT services, technology solutions, and services for businesses of all sizes. We’ve helped many businesses automate their processes and achieve productivity.

AZCOMP’s mission is to help enterprises to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase cybersecurity through innovative tech solutions. We’re your partner for success.

AZCOMP Technologies has provided technology solutions and services to businesses since 2000. AZCOMP employees offer our services in Mesa, Tempe, Scottsdale, Chandler, Phoenix, Glendale, Apache Junction, Queen Creek, San Tan Valley, and Gold Canyon. Request your IT consultation today!

Is an Antivirus Software Really Needed?

Antivirus software

Why You Need an Antivirus Software

While increasingly advanced technology is making work easier and more convenient, it has risks. It is a double-edged sword. Cyber attacks are now more common, which is why a robust security system is vital for any Arizona business. Read the 15-Ways to Protect Your Business From a Cyber Attack article on our site to learn how to protect your business from potential threats and how antivirus software can help. 

Your first line of defense is usually antivirus software, but there are other safeguards you need to keep secure. 

Free Antivirus Programs Are Not Enough

While free antivirus programs are bundled with many Windows computers, they’re not sufficient on their own. In other words, free antivirus programs cannot protect your computers or network from cyber-attacks. Your antivirus software is just one of the many tools you must have in your entire security system.

Many still think that antivirus software is all that’s needed to keep your enterprise safe. This is mainly because 20 years ago, that was the only security tool available. However, antivirus software is insufficient to defend your network from most cyber-attacks. You need a comprehensive security system with many defensive layers.

Antivirus Software Only Identifies a Defined Set of Threats

An antivirus program works because it is programmed to identify a defined set of threats like worms, Trojans, adware, and more. Anti-ransomware software is different and is programmed to detect various threats. Suppose a threat is something other than what the antivirus software is programmed for. In that case, it will not detect the risk, and the cybercriminals will get past your antivirus program. 

Once cybercriminals can access your computer or other systems, they can do whatever they want. Your antivirus program is useless at that point.

Failure to Keep Antivirus Software Updated and Monitored is a Major Risk

Among common mistakes Arizona computer users make regarding antivirus software is that they do not keep it up-to-date. Sometimes, they have no idea if it’s even on or working. To maintain security, the computer user or IT professional must monitor and manage the antivirus program. When available, updates must be installed, and someone needs to check it on a routine basis (preferably daily!) to ensure that the system is running and identify any threats.

It is common for weeks, months, or even years to pass by without anybody checking to see if the program is on or doing anything. This means that your system has been vulnerable during that period. It’s scary to think that your business would have been attacked, and your antivirus program would have done nothing to stop it.

Continuous Monitoring of Antivirus Software

When meeting with prospects for the first time and assessing their system, we encountered situations where an antivirus program was disabled for over a year. The particular server had been infected with a virus, causing them problems. To make matters worse, they didn’t even know about it. 

IT professionals should have a way to monitor your antivirus program continuously. They should receive alerts if anything is wrong with the system and fix it remotely. AZCOMP monitors all our clients’ antivirus programs remotely and receives alerts when the program has gone offline, hasn’t been updated, or if any threat needs to be addressed.

Do you have any questions about your antivirus software or any other aspects of network security? Feel free to call for a free cybersecurity consultation anytime.

About AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies of Mesa, AZ, is a leading provider of cybersecurity solutions and services for businesses of all sizes. AZCOMP’s mission is to help enterprises to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase cybersecurity through innovative tech solutions.

AZCOMP Technologies has provided technology solutions and services to businesses since 2000. Request your IT consultation today!

If I’m Going to Get Hacked Anyway, Why Bother Spending Money on Cyber Security?

Cyber Security

Is it Really Worth it to Spend Money on Cyber Security?

Although the colossal cyber security threats businesses face in the age of automation and artificial intelligence, many continue to overlook the importance of cyber security protection. The excuses given against investing in professional cyber security are numerous. 

A common justification our IT experts at AZCOMP Technologies often encounter is, “If I’m going to get hacked anyway, why bother spending on cyber security?” Many businesses don’t want to spend money on cyber security. 

But why is this the case, and what are the repercussions for adopting this thinking? 

Unwillingness to Spend Money on Cyber Security Protection

“If my business is going to get hacked anyway, why bother spending on cyber security?” 

As a business owner, this is one of the most flawed ways of thinking for several reasons. 

For one, making business decisions out of the desire to avoid spending money on cybersecurity protection can be costly. But let me explain. 

Failing to invest in the right cyber protection measures can be the difference between staying in business or shutting it down after a cyberattack event. 

In his hardcover, The Road Less Stupid, Keith Cunningham says that making it in business is about “doing fewer dumb things” and “doing more smart things.” Choosing not to invest and put weight on cybersecurity protection add to the “dumb things” you do, as the author suggests, and the repercussions are anything but pretty. 

Hackers will not overlook your business because it is a small player in the industry. You’re at risk if you use the internet in your business, use email, and have customers and a bank account. You’re even more at risk if you’re processing payments, have client lists, use online banking, or have any other accounts you’re logging onto from your computers. Every business has something valuable for attackers.

Digital assets such as credit cards, medical records, social security numbers, customer information, lists of email addresses, lists of passwords, and more are all valuable to the dark web. 

Ransomware and Dark Web 

Cybercriminals target millions of small businesses yearly because they’re easier targets. You see, the primary thinking of small business owners is that they have nothing of interest to attackers. But there’s always money to steal from your business or information to sell on the dark web. That makes small businesses an easier target in the mind of a cybercriminal because you’re not protected in the same way as larger corporations. 

For example, attackers can hold your information at ransom because they know how valuable it is for continuity in your industry. In the ever-competitive business space, a downtime event due to ransomware can cost you new sales and loss of revenue due to the inability to serve your customers. 

A ransomware attack generally makes it impossible to run your business. This means you’ve basically lost your ability to generate income which can be crippling.

Ransomware poses a real threat and can be devastating for any business. Imagine a situation where all business emails and work files disappear. Where do you start? The price of recovering from a cyberattack can be so significant that it takes years to get where you were. 

Investing in professional cybersecurity protection services can prevent such devastating events for your business. The amount you’d spend on the protection pales in significance to how much you’d pay to recover from an attack. It’s a simple choice, really!

We’ll Just Get an Insurance Policy, Back Up the Data, and Take the Hit

This is another common excuse by business owners that never hold water. It is a flawed plan for several reasons. 

Insurance firms are not in the business of paying out claims but making money. Picture this: the profits for most cyber insurance carriers have been from 70% of premiums. What’s paid out is only 30% of the claims. 

While those figures have recently changed, it doesn’t get any better. The CEO of Zurich Insurance Group predicts a future of uninsurable cyberattacks. So where does that leave your business that solely depends on insurance in case of an attack? 

On the other hand, there are minimum requirements to fulfill when taking a cyber insurance policy, and ignorance doesn’t count among them. A cyber liability policy demands proof of having security measures in place, such as endpoint protection, multi-factor authentication, password management, and tested and proven data backup solutions. 

Most carriers will also want to see a WISP or business continuity plan, cyber security awareness training, and phishing training. The list can be longer depending on the coverage you’re contemplating. 

While backup plans seem like a failsafe plan, hackers are usually a step ahead. They create ransomware that also takes out your backup by corrupting the data they hold. 

Access to backup files means the attackers have a free hand with your critical information. For example, they can release client contacts, employee lists, and all email communications or financial information. Insurance carriers cannot cover that, so your competitors would have a field day!

One of the newer fads in ransomware attacks is for the criminals to threaten their victim with the fact that they will run a negative publicity campaign against you and release all the information they stole from you to the public if you don’t pay the ransom. So, even if you can wipe your entire system and restore your backup to circumvent the ransomware attack (which is still a massive ordeal, by the way), they still inflict significant amounts of pain on you by destroying your character and credibility, and business by releasing everything. It’s better to prevent a ransomware attack than just letting it happen and dealing with the consequences.

Having cybersecurity protections is no guarantee of never getting hacked, but it helps significantly by blocking many attempts. The protection also prevents the extent of the damage and your business from becoming a low-hanging fruit. The protection also enables you to demonstrate good faith in case of any lawsuits or with getting your insurance to pay out on the claim.

Think of cybersecurity as wearing a seatbelt, practicing good driving habits, not texting while driving, and investing in a safe vehicle. While all these measures will not guarantee you’ll never get into an accident, they significantly reduce the risk of death and severe injury. Cybersecurity protection is the security measure that may prevent the loss of your livelihood – the death of your business. 

Book a consult or call us to discuss custom cybersecurity protection for your business. Remember, if you’re connected to the internet, are using email, and have a bank account, you’re a cybercrime target. Are you protected? 

About AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies of Mesa, AZ, is a leading provider of technology solutions and cybersecurity for businesses of all sizes. AZCOMP’s mission is to help enterprises to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase cybersecurity through innovative tech solutions.

AZCOMP Technologies has provided technology solutions and services to businesses since 2000. Our experienced and committed professionals spend most of their time working on clients’ computers and systems. 

Contact us today for more information about our cybersecurity solutions in Phoenix. 

Automation Strategies Businesses Must Have Now

Automation Strategies

3 Tech And Automation Strategies Businesses Must Have Now To Stay Competitive, Profitable, And Thriving This Year

While the Covid-19 pandemic significantly impacted every aspect of life, it ushered in an era of doing things differently. For many, this has meant accelerating automation strategies and new technologies to remain relevant in an increasingly competitive business space. 

While automation tech, including machine learning and artificial intelligence, has been around for some time, Covid-19 was the single event that fast-tracked its adoption. This is particularly true for startups and small establishments without the deep pockets of large organizations. Businesses must leverage automation technology for efficiency, cost reduction, and streamlined operations. 

There’s no turning back with the new ways of doing business, and you might as well adapt to stay profitable and maintain growth. A whole heap of these changes is here to stay!

Here are three tech and automation strategies that your business must have to keep its head above the waters of an increasingly competitive market:

Cybersecurity Protection

Warren Buffet has two rules for making money: the first, don’t lose money, and the second, don’t forget the first rule. 

Spending money on cybersecurity protection is the least favorite for most business owners. After all, nobody thinks they’re at risk of an attack until they become victims, and it costs them an arm and a leg to salvage their business. Cyberattacks on businesses have increased in frequency in the wake of the pandemic, especially during the lockdowns. This was when droves were forced to embrace remote working with unsecured home Wi-Fi and other devices. 

A Trend Micro Annual Cybersecurity report identified 16 million cyber threats in 2020 alone. Another report by Business Wire said that 81% of global organizations faced increased cyber threats, and 79% of them experienced downtimes. Whenever there is downtime and whenever there is a security event, it’s going to be costly to the business. Costly in the form of losing actual revenue due to the business losing the ability to operate, and costly in terms of having increased IT expenses to fix the cybersecurity mess.

But you can stop this loss of money by investing in adequate cybersecurity measures such as VPNs, firewalls, antimalware and antivirus software, application whitelisting, and many other security tools. Stop becoming the latest cyberattack victim who gets robbed blind and taken out. Have a plan in place and invest in the proper cybersecurity protection. If you need ideas on where to get started, check out our 15-ways to protect your business from cyberattack infographic. In addition, equip your employees with the necessary cybersecurity skills through regular cybersecurity awareness training.

Using Tech to Get More Effective with Fewer Staff

At the start of 2020, the US unemployment rate had been steadily declining to as much as under 3% from 10%. The Covid shutdowns briefly covered up the deficit. Fortunately, the shutdowns are behind us, but lingering issues remain. The labor shortage is crippling for businesses trying to pick up from wherever they left off or operate at full capacity. The issue isn’t only with finding the right people but also with the growing salary demands and other hiring costs. 

So, what are businesses doing to circumvent this hurdle? They are implementing artificial intelligence and automated systems to compensate for the deficit and reduce labor costs. 

New software is regularly becoming available with impressive capabilities that can help any business. For the most part, these new tools don’t necessarily eliminate the need for employees, but they can help a growing company continue to grow without hiring new employees, or they can help a company with no growth shave off a percentage of employees to help keep costs low. 

Automation and AI-driven software are streamlining processes and getting more productivity for businesses.

For example, in our business, all departments (marketing, sales, admin, and service delivery teams) have implemented new software programs to help us get more done and deliver better service.

As one simple example, our support team recently implemented TimeZest. The main reason we implemented this was to allow customers the ability to schedule an appointment with one of our support engineers without having to talk to anyone or send emails back and forth. This has lightened the load of our support coordinator and is one way we’re able to support more clients with the same number of staff.

Systems like TimeZest and many other tools achieve efficiency and productivity by reducing the “paperwork” and the manual labor tasks that take up most of the working hours. We’ve grown without needing to increase the number of employees as we would 5 years ago. 

Online Ordering and Fulfillment

With lockdowns and other restrictions, businesses had to adapt quickly or perish. There was no way in between. Online order fulfillment emerged, and those who embraced it thrived. For example, large brands such as Camping World, which were able to transition swiftly to online ordering and fulfillment, took an early lead against the competition. 

Also, at this time, many restaurants started or increased online ordering and delivery. Some even became pickup-only establishments without indoor seating and service. 

Even if you’re not an online retailer like Camping World or a restaurant, each business industry has so much new technology to help facilitate selling their products and fulfilling their services to their customers.

No matter what industry your business is in— big or small, new or old, B2B or B2C, there is AI-driven and process-based automation software and project management software that can help. There is a wide range of online tools like remote doctor visits, online self-serve scheduling, automated quoting, contract delivery, automatic payment collection (or at least online payment requests and collection) that are connected to your accounting software, document sharing, and on-demand video training. These software solutions can also automate all or a portion of your sales process and fulfill your products and services to your customers.

Businesses in any industry that doesn’t embrace the new way of doing business risk being permanently left behind and struggling to stay afloat. 

As an entrepreneur, asking yourself how to add online, digital, or automated ordering and fulfillment is overdue. Embrace the technology available to help your business so that it is easier for your customers to do business with you and easier for you to deliver your products and services to them.

As you ponder investing in technology and automation (always keeping cyber security in mind 😉),  book a consultation or call us to discuss your ideas or questions so we can help you implement new technology into your business.

About AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies of Mesa, AZ, is a leading provider of technology solutions and services for businesses of all sizes looking to automate their processes. AZCOMP’s mission is to help businesses to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase cybersecurity through innovative tech solutions.

AZCOMP Technologies has provided technology solutions and services to businesses since 2000. Our experienced and committed professionals spend most of their time working on clients’ computers and systems. 

Contact us today for more information about our cybersecurity solutions in Phoenix.  

Medisoft Password Requirements

Medisoft Support: New Password Requirements in Medisoft v26+

password management

Password Management

password management

Believe it or not, we still talk to people on a routine basis that thinks their digital security is “done” because they installed a free anti-virus program on their computer a while back. Protecting your business from a cyber attack is a much more complicated task than you might realize, which is why we produced this guide called The 15 Ways To Protect Your Business From a Cyber Attack. Having all these different ways to protect your business is called a “layered approach” to security. In this article, we’ll be discussing layer #1 – password management.

As you might imagine, there is a lot to consider as it relates to password management, but it is pretty straightforward. Here’s the outline of what password management covers.

  1. Use complex passwords or passphrases
  2. Use unique passwords or passphrases
  3. Critical accounts deserve better passwords
  4. Change your passwords
  5. Use a password manager

Let’s jump into the details!

Creating Complex Passwords or Passphrases

As mentioned in the 15 Ways to Protect Your Business From Cyber Attack article, the first step in password management is to create strong passwords or passphrases.

Here are some points for creating strong passwords, or passphrases:

  • Use a blend of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, symbols, and spaces.
  • Make your secret word at least 12 characters long, but the longer the better!
  • Avoid using dictionary words or everyday phrases. But, you can take everyday dictionary words and give them a twist. If you really like the word “password” for your passwords, then give it a little upgrade. For example, “Pa$$ w0rD $$” could be a way to mix it up a little bit. That is a 12-character password that uses upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.

Did you know that hackers have special software to crack passwords?

If you use passwords with all lowercase letters that are only 8 letters or shorter, the password-cracking software can figure out your password nearly instantly.

If you use a 12-character password that has a combination of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols, it would take 3,000 years to crack the password.

Check out this chart produced by to get a sense of how using complex passphrases is an absolute must!

Time it takes to hack a password

Use Unique Passwords

For every website or app that you have an account with, you should have a unique or different password for that account.

This means that you should not use the same password for your Netflix account and your banking website account.

This isn’t just a weird rule a crazy IT guy came up with to ruin your life and make you miserable. There is a good reason for this, and it is quite simple.

It is very common that a large site will get hacked, like Target. When this happens, huge amounts of usernames and passwords get leaked. Now the bad guys know your password and the email address associated with your Target account.

From there, the bad guys can now try that same username and password on all the banking websites, Gmail, Microsoft, Amazon, all retirement management and stock management sites, etc. etc.

If you used the same password on your banking website as your Target account, then you’re in trouble.

The bottom line, use different passwords everywhere.

Critical Accounts Deserve Better Passwords

A password with 12 or more characters that include lower and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols is obviously a very strong password. When it comes to your more critical or sensitive accounts, you should do better than that though. Consider at least 16 or even 20+ characters.

Your most critical accounts include things like your Windows login on your computer, your QuickBooks account, your retirement account, your banking account, your company financial institutions, your company CRM, your email accounts, and any other account that has sensitive information. Accounts like these are gold mines for hackers, so do everything you can to protect them well.

Changing Your Passwords Regularly

Finally, regularly change your passwords to ensure that they remain secure. As a rule of thumb, change your passwords every three to six months. This can help prevent hackers from guessing or cracking your password and protect you if your password is somehow compromised.

Use Password Management

If you use a unique and complex password for every account that you have, and if you change that password routinely, I’m pretty sure that nobody has a good enough memory to remember all those passwords.

Don’t write your passwords down on a sheet of paper. Don’t store all your passwords on a spreadsheet on your computer or your phone. Instead, use a professional password manager.

Before I started using a password manager, I tried so hard to not write them down somewhere, and I tried to not enter them into a spreadsheet. I knew that both of those things were a bad idea, but I didn’t know what else to do. Remembering passwords was one of the biggest frustrations in my life.

Now that I use a password manager, passwords are only slightly annoying to me. It’s the safest and most convenient way to store all the passwords to all your accounts.

Feel free to do your own research on which password management tool to use. There are a lot of articles that have been written giving full reviews of all the most popular management tools. The password manager we recommend to our clients is called Keeper.

About AZCOMP Technologies

AZCOMP Technologies opened its doors in 2000 and has been providing managed IT services to companies across industries in Phoenix. Most of our time is spent working on our client’s computers and networks to prevent unexpected interruptions. Our task is to ensure establishments do business with peace of mind. We’re partners to your success!

Contact us today for more info about managed IT services in Phoenix.