November News:

On The Calendar As the holidays kick off this month, we hope you are penciling in much needed time to slow down, unplug and share joyously with family and friends!  We pick the pace back up again in December so be sure to save the upcoming dates: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. will be next month's DFW Business Intelligence Luncheon at Noah's Event Center in Irving. RSVP from our Events page today, for a behind the scenes look at what powers SQL Server 2017 for Linux and Windows. Wednesday, December 13, 2017 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Las Colinas Country Club in Irving, Steve Meek with The Fulcrum Group will be speaking at December's North Texas MGMA Luncheon on Improving Time Management and Communication in a Busy Hospital or PracticeSee our Events page for more details and to register. Quick links to our social media pages are accessible right from our website and in every monthly newsletter email you receive from us. If you're new to our newsletter and you'd like to subscribe, let us know.
Top 5 Reasons To Complete A Business Impact Analysis Business Impact Assessment from The Fulcrum Group Business Impact Analysis (BIA) is a process to determine and evaluate the potential operational and financial effects of an interruption to critical IT operations, systems, and processes as a result of a disaster, accident or emergency. A BIA is essential in developing your Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan; no organization has unlimited budget for Disaster Recovery planning, so you must focus on the highest impact areas first. Impacts to consider include:
  • Lost sales and income
  • Damage to reputation or goodwill
  • Increased expenses (e.g., overtime labor, outsourcing, expediting costs, etc.)
  • Regulatory fines
  • Contractual penalties or loss of contractual bonuses
  • Customer dissatisfaction or defection
  • Delay of new business plans
Here are our Top 5 Reasons to Complete a BIA:
  1. A BIA helps you identify critical business processes. Before you can craft your Disaster Recovery plan, you have to identify the business functions that your company depends on, along with your revenue.
  1. A BIA helps you find the potential threats to critical business processes. Once you’ve identified your critical business processes, you can identify risks associated with each one. The risk assessment lists all potential threats that can interrupt one or more vital business processes. It also assesses the relative probability of each threat.  External threats are often the more obvious: natural and man-made disaster such as earthquakes, floods, even prolonged power outages. Internal risks include failing hardware, inadvertent data corruption, and cybersecurity breaches.  Some threats, like hackers and disgruntled employees, can be either external or internal. The risk assessment uncovers potential disruption risks that are often overlooked.
  1. A BIA helps you understand how much potential threats could cost you. The BIA should give you an objective look at operational and financial impacts resulting from disruption of IT operations, systems, and processes, should a disruption actually occur.  Knowing the potential costs of such events makes their danger very real.
  1. A BIA helps you prioritize your Disaster Recovery planning budget. The BIA provides an objective way to assess which functions do (or do not) need detailed recovery plans, and to prioritize developing their individual mitigation and recovery plans.  Your budget will be prioritized around those critical IT operations, systems, and processes with the highest impact to the organization if there is a disaster, accident, or outage.
  1. A BIA helps you determine RTO and RPO for Disaster Recovery. When considering Disaster Recovery planning, the BIA will inform your process of the requirements for Recovery Time Objective (how long can we be down) and Recovery Point Objective (how much data can we afford to lose).
We hope we've underscored the value with you in taking these solid steps in your Disaster Recovery planning.  Always know you can reach out to us with any questions you might have!
Fulcrum Group & Webroot - Improving End User Security   The Fulcrum Group is continuously evaluating our IT security tools and systems to ensure optimal protection for our clients.  The increase in malware, ransomware, and other cybersecurity threats has lead us to evaluate our desktop antivirus solution. Most of our clients are currently running Symantec EndPoint Protection.  While we feel that Symantec EndPoint Protection is a good solution, our evaluations have led us to another solution that provides a heightened level of end user security while reducing the performance impact on our end users’ computers. Webroot SecureAnywhere® Business Endpoint Protection is multi-vector protection that secures endpoints and users across all stages of a cyber attack.  Modern threats use multiple vectors to attack, from malicious email attachments to infected web ads to phishing sites. Criminals combine a range of threat technologies, deployed in numerous stages to infect computers and networks. Webroot SecureAnywhere® Business Endpoint Protection offers a unique security approach that protects against threats across numerous vectors; including email, web browsing, file attachments, hyperlinks, display ads, social media apps, and connected devices like USB drives, as well as other blended threats with the potential to deliver malicious payloads. Using our always up-to-date, cloud-based technology, Webroot is able to detect, analyze, categorize, score, and highly accurately predict the threats each endpoint is experiencing in real time. By combining Webroot SecureAnywhere file pattern and predictive behavior recognition technology with cutting edge machine learning and the processing power of cloud computing, Webroot effectively stops malware and zero-day threats at the moment of attack. The Webroot approach is more effective and accountable than single-vector competitors. You no longer need to rely on an outmoded detection model that is easily overwhelmed by today’s malware—a model that yields unknown dwell times, can’t protect users until after malware has already infiltrated the system, and doesn’t alert on attacks until long after the infiltration has occurred. Because Webroot SecureAnywhere Business Endpoint Protection is fully cloud-based, there are no definitions or signatures to deploy and manage. Malware detection occurs continuously in real time, so performance issues fade away. Scheduled systems scans are normally around 18 seconds and never impact device performance, even on virtual desktop and server environments, as well as embedded operating systems. The software agent itself happily coexists with other antivirus solutions, so there’s no need to rip and replace an existing solution. If you’re a Fulcrum Group SPOT Client, your Fulcrum Group account team will be reaching out to let you know of the upcoming change.  The transition will be seamless, and there will be no downtime or increase in cost.  If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us.
SPOTlight On: Meet Our New Client Experience Manager, James Bryan We'd like to take this opportunity to introduce The Fulcrum Group's new Client Experience Manager, James Bryan, to you with a few fun facts:
  • James comes to us Security+ certified, allowing for a better understanding of important current security principals, which enable him to mitigate expense security threats for clients at an expert level.
  • Reading, traveling, watching football, and working out when time allows are James' fav ways to relax - in fact, he and his wife are looking forward to a trip to Boston in March, during St. Patrick's Day!
  • Priding himself on consistently reaching higher accountability standards, James feels this attitude helps everyone on the team, in turn, rise to the occasion for success.
We're always happy to embrace that kind of outlook - welcome, James!
  More Than Tech Tips: Are You Taking The Section 179 Tax Deduction? Business Tips From The Fulcrum Group Section 179 of the IRS tax code allows businesses to deduct the full purchase price of qualifying equipment and/or software purchased or financed during the tax year, up to $500,000. In other words, if your business buys or leases a piece of qualifying equipment, you can deduct the full purchase price from your gross income. The U.S. government created Section 179 to encourage businesses to spend money on equipment and help boost the economy. Section 179 is ideal for small and medium businesses looking for a tax advantage in 2017. Please remember, the $500,000 limit and 50% Bonus Depreciation are promised through 2017!  Beginning in 2018 the $500,000 will remain in place, however, Bonus Depreciation will go down in phases: 40% in 2018 and 30% in 2019. Always feel comfortable picking up the phone to discuss with us at 817.337.0300 or reach out to us via email if you have any questions at all.  More info can be found on the Section 179 page on our website.
  Did You Know...Business Impact Analysis The Fulcrum Group Dallas Fort Worth IT Outsourcing Managed Services Did you know…that a Business Impact Analysis is the 1st step in starting your Disaster Recovery planning?  To get started today, contact your Fulcrum Group Account Manager via email or at 817-337-0300.