OMNI Solutions Group Blog

OMNI Solutions Group has been serving the Washington D.C. metropolitan area since 1994, providing IT Support such as technical help-desk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Situations Can Quickly Deteriorate When Employees Attempt to Resolve IT Issues

Situations Can Quickly Deteriorate When Employees Attempt to Resolve IT Issues

In a world where businesses either pride themselves on their security solutions, or have woefully unsecured networks, you need to understand that one of the most common threats to sensitive corporate data comes from within your organization. User error is the leading cause of data loss and security-related problems, although, it’s important to remember that they often have good intentions that may result in an unfortunate outcome.


One way this happens is with what’s called shadow IT. This is the implementation of technology solutions that may not be sanctioned by your organization’s IT department. For example, an employee might choose to download a free antivirus if they see that their workstation’s antivirus software license has expired. Or, if they don’t have a word processing solution, they may look for alternatives on the Internet. While they may have only good intentions when implementing the solution, this can lead to several security discrepancies that could put your data at risk.

Another way that this might happen is when an employee is working hard on a project in order to meet a deadline, but the software license expires and they are no longer able to access the tools they need to continue working. Rather than go through the proper channels (especially if IT is bogged-down with work, and is unresponsive to urgent requests), the employee might choose to take matters into their own hands and find a solution that works. The employee can now get back to doing their job, but they’ve just implemented shadow IT, which is a major red flag for businesses.

When it comes to shadow IT, the primary concern is the source of the solution. Where did the software that your employee found come from? Depending on what exactly they downloaded, it could be a seemingly-benign open-source software from a reputable website. However, if they found it on some ad-encrusted sketchy corner of the Internet, you might be in trouble. Freeware is often exploited by hackers to spread their influence, knowing full well that people will download it and use it, rather than pay for a software license from a reputable vendor.

The best way to prevent shadow IT is to control the permissions that you provide for your employees on their workstations. Downloading a new software solution often requires administrator permission, so when you remove these permissions from a workstation, you’re forcing the employee to go through the proper channels when requesting a new software to work with. It also helps to educate your employees on how to use the technology solutions your business has adopted--as another reason why they might choose to use something different could be the fact that they’re unfamiliar using other applications.

In general, having a responsive IT department can minimize the trouble that your team has with its IT solutions can be a great deterrent for shadow IT. When they don’t run into hiccups, and they are comfortable using your business’s technology solutions, they won’t feel the need to implement additional solutions that can put your company’s data at risk.

To learn more about shadow IT, and the threats that it poses for your business, reach out to us at 301-869-6890.

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Sandra Hopper
There are situations that can quickly that can be deteriorating when their employees have to resolve the IT issue. I have to get t... Read More
Thursday, 23 May 2019 05:23
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Tip of the Week: Don’t Be Caught Off Guard By What People Online are Saying About Your Business

Tip of the Week: Don’t Be Caught Off Guard By What People Online are Saying About Your Business

Every business owner understands that having a good reputation is paramount toward their success. Yet, some business owners may not fully grasp just how much the Internet influences their company’s reputation in today’s business environment. In order to find out what the people of the Internet are saying about your business, you have to manage your company’s online reputation.

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Tip of the Week: No Internet? No Problem! 3 Ways to Be Productive Without the Internet

Tip of the Week: No Internet? No Problem! 3 Ways to Be Productive Without the Internet

Most modern businesses need access to crucial parts of their infrastructure in order to keep operations moving forward. For example, your building’s electricity is necessary to power your technology, and without an Internet connection, you could be losing out on hours of potential productivity. What can you do to minimize downtime and make the best out of a bad situation?

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You Need to Take Into Account Every Possible Risk to Your Data

b2ap3_thumbnail_your_business_backup_plan_400.jpgYour business’s data is its lifeline. Without it, you can’t hope to continue functioning, especially if you’re unable to recover it following a data loss disaster. Businesses that experience a devastating data loss incident, and are unable to recover, are likely to go out of business within one calendar year following the incident. Is your business prepared to tackle a data loss disaster?

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Use This Test to Calculate Your Employees’ Risk Levels

b2ap3_thumbnail_risk_for_employers_400.jpgWhen it comes to your business’s data security, there can be no room for error. October is Cyber Security Month, so there’s no better time to ensure that your business is taking all of the proper precautions to maximize security protocol. However, there’s an often-forgotten aspect of cybersecurity called employee risk management, and it’s more complex than you might think.

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3 Ways That Your Business Can Improve Innovation

b2ap3_thumbnail_innovation_brings_profits_400.jpgWhen it seems like every idea has already been patented or brought to fruition, that’s a key indicator that innovation in your company is lacking. Traditionally, advancements in business technology have driven innovation for companies. If your company’s innovation well is running dry, then there are measures that your business can take to become more innovative.

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It Takes 10-12 Positive Customer Reviews to Make Up for One Negative Review

b2ap3_thumbnail_unhappy_clientele_400.jpgWe all like to think that our businesses are the most influential in our chosen field. However, the true scope of how true this is, lies not only in your expertise, but also with your clients. If they aren’t satisfied, you can be sure that this fact will reflect itself in your sales figures.

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Your IT Department Should Be Your Allies, Not an Afterthought

b2ap3_thumbnail_it_that_works_for_you_400.jpgHow involved in your operations is your IT department? Does your SMB even have an IT department? Many organizations tend to consider IT an afterthought because they don’t believe themselves to be targets for hackers, or don’t anticipate costly technology issues. However, these business owners underestimate the power of complete transparency between an organization and IT.

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Your Legacy Technology Could Be Holding You Back

b2ap3_thumbnail_let_down_by_old_tech_400.jpgWhen was the last time you provided your business with improved technology that offers a great return on investment? If your business is using software and hardware that hasn’t been updated in several years, the same technology that’s necessary for your operations could be holding you back from achieving optimal efficiency.

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How Your Business Can Benefit from Unified Communications Solutions

b2ap3_thumbnail_unified_communications_for_you_400.jpgIn business, the importance of using a unified communications system cannot be understated. Without this necessary common ground within your office, you’ll potentially run into complications when it comes to communicating with your employees. It doesn’t matter if you have ten or even a hundred employees; you should consider setting up a unified communications solution for your business, and quickly.

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3 Signs Your Business is On Its Last Leg

b2ap3_thumbnail_start_up_problems_400.jpgWhen you first considered starting your own business, you thought nothing could possibly go wrong. You had so much hope for the future. But, things are a lot more complicated than that. You start to think the worst - your business is failing, and you don’t know what to do about it. When times get hard, do you throw in the towel, or persevere?

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The Internet of Things Now Includes the Rainforest

b2ap3_thumbnail_this_is_big_data_400.jpgBig data is changing the way that the world works. Businesses are looking at big data to discover new trends in various industries. Additionally, big data is being applied to maintain the health of both humans and the environment, including the endangered rainforests.

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Does an Unlimited PTO Policy Sound Too Good to Be True?

b2ap3_thumbnail_unlimited_vacation_time_400.jpgPaid time off is somewhat of an anomaly to the business owner. They don’t want to provide too little and destroy morale, yet they don’t want to lose capital by providing too much to their employees. It might seem strange to suggest unlimited paid time off, but according to some business owners, it might be a quality solution to this dilemma, with enough care put into its integration.

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Study Shows that an Open Office Can Hinder Productivity

b2ap3_thumbnail_open_office_400.jpgThe open office is convenient for a number of reasons. It is far more space-efficient, and it makes collaboration easier among coworkers. However, did you know that the open office can make people worse at their jobs? In 2002, a study in the journal Environment and Behavior tracked employees as they were moved from a private office to the open office, and the results were less than desirable.

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