12 Computer Maintenance Tasks

All computers need maintenance regularly.  This keeps them secure, running error free and optimised and updated with the latest features.  Below is a list of tasks that Networkz.com.au can compete on your PC to keep it running great.

  1. Check for Virus
    The obvious first item to check on all computers. Involves ensuring Anti-Virus software is up-to-date and configured correctly.  Full scans completed and results actioned where required.  Ensuring software is running real time monitoring and within subscription periods.
  2. Malware and Spyware
    Similar to Anti-Virus but not always running in real time.  Full computer scans and actioned where required.
  3. Security Checks
    Checking your computer Firewall and hardware appliance.  Ensuring no unnecessary open ports or applications or custom rules and further advanced tools are configured to reject attacks.
  4. Backups
    Check the PC has scheduled automated full backups of all hard drives.  The ability to take these backups off-site or to a cloud provider
  5. Temp Files
    Clean up all system temp files for smooth running
  6. Fragmentation
    Full system defrag to speed up system response times
  7. Error Checking
    Checking Event logs for errors and repair where needed. Includes patching and registry edits
  8. Check for disk errors and system file checking and memory error checking
    Using the built in Microsoft tools to ensure the systems integrity and error free running
  9. Optimise Start-up Items
    Remove application with start-up items that slow down system response times
  10. Software Updates
    Updates fall into several categories.  OS updates, Application updates and Driver updates, these can really improve system stability and features.
    –   OS Updates released by Microsoft or your operating system provider
    –   Application updates such as Browser, Database applications and Runtime
    –   Driver updates for system hardware such as Wifi, main board or video devices
  11. Remove unwanted and old programs
    Uninstall outdated and unwanted old applications. often these applications get installed without the users knowledge such as hidden add-ons to downloaded applications
  12. Physical Clean
    Remove dust from the PC chassis using compressed air, clean Keyboard and Mouse and Monitor

4 Steps to Better Email Security

I was reflecting over the weekend of the mid and late 90’s when the internet was rolled out in mass around Australia.  How wonderful and innocent it was. Email was amazing with the ability to send messages around the planet in real time from the comfort of your home, and security was a word in the fine print and certainly not something the end user need worry about.

A few of us dared to examine the depths of what is possible and we quickly realised the internet will quickly become a playground for anyone wanting to mess with it.  Today there is no escaping it.  The threats are increasingly real and sophisticated and a company’s only real defence is a vigilant usage policy coupled with technology, design and education.  I tell my small business clients that being vigilant is half the battle so finding a balance between security and the ability to conduct business freely is essential.  This short guide is about finding that balance.

STEP 1.  PROMOTE A ROBUST EMAIL POLICY
Computers don’t send email, people do therefore it is important that everyone in your organisation understand exactly what is acceptable when using email.
A good policy should be:

  • Clear and concise to understand with no room for interpretation
  • Realistic based on all areas of your business to reflect the way you work
  • Flexible to change as your business changes
  • Up-to-date covering all new threats
  • In-your-face, an effective policy is seen on induction or bulletin boards or newsletters within your business

Step 2.  BE CLEAR ABOUT THAT YOU’RE DEFENDING AGAINST
Your email security strategy should cover everyone of these threats

  • Virus, Trojan and Bots
  • Spam and Phishing Attacks
  • Spyware
  • Denial of Service Attacks
  • Confidential Data Leaks
  • Hatemail and Pornography
  • Illegal Material and Stolen Files
  • Regulatory Breaches

STEP 3.  MAKE YOUR DEFENCE SUITABLE

Your email security strategy needs to be suitable for the rest of your business process. No point deploying a robust security system that gets bypassed when users work from home or on the road.  An email security strategy needs to be easy to deploy, monitor and manage, automatically update and span departments.  You need to choose the right deployment options such as Software, Applications and Managed Services. Only you can decide on the right method or which combination.

STEP 4.  MONITOR, CHECK AND REPORTING

So now you have a security policies in place and a robust security system, what’s next.  Who is monitoring it?  Regular checks from a qualified professional still need completing and tweaks, updates and refining need attention.  For small business who do not have full time IT staff, this may be as simple as employing IT professionals such as Networkz to check systems.

  • Regular computer scanning and monitoring
  • Email server updates and refinement
  • Company policy updates
  • Staff education