A Cybersecurity Plan Is NOT Optional – No Matter What Size Your Organization Is!

In 2016, cybercrime was on the rise, and within the past 5 years, the main targets have become smaller organizations.

As organizations attempt to educate themselves on this evolving threat, computer hackers are hard at work looking for new vulnerabilities to exploit. IT professionals and business owners need to keep track of ongoing trends in cybercrime and cybersecurity. Although most data breaches that reach the headlines are large organizations, don’t be fooled – small and medium business (SMBs) face a high level of risk.

Mitigating your risk is an important strategy and now is the time to begin planning for the year ahead.

All equipment must require login with a complex password or pass-phrase. Ideally, each of your passwords would be at least 12 characters, and contain a combination of numbers, symbols, uppercase letters, lowercase letters, and spaces. The password would be free of repetition, dictionary words, usernames, pronouns, IDs, and any other predefined number or letter sequences.

All potential points-of-entry should be protected and have detection capabilities. Cyber criminals work digitally — through viruses, spyware, malware, etc. – to extract information without ever physically entering your office. Bryley Systems provides a multi-layer, multi-point of entry approach to protecting our customers’ data.  This approach provides multiple layers of both hardware (network and web access) and software (anti-virus and anti-spyware) protection which are constantly updated.

Security logs should be monitored to detect threats and achieve compliance. Organizations are under constant pressure to protect data and crucial IT equipment. Monitoring logs is a critical component of a security strategy and a requirement for regulations such as PCI DSS, GLBA, HIPAA, SOX and others.

When putting together a cybersecurity plan, it is important to use these guidelines:

Identify. You need to know exactly what you have that is worth protecting. This identification step should include transmitted and stored data, networks, all endpoint devices, machines, users, and systems. Once all assets have been identified, you should perform a security assessment to locate each potential weak link within the assets you have identified.

Security Assessment. A security assessment will give you a clear view of your current weaknesses, potential points of entry for hackers, and the strength of your current security measures.  Computer security is an ever-changing world. Utilizing a layered approach is the best defense against cybercrime. Every organization, regardless of size, should continually manage, evaluate, and update their security infrastructure to lessen the threat of a cyberattack.

Protect. Once you understand what you need to protect, you can take immediate steps to secure those items. Protection involves a variety of measures, including implementing authentication and applying patches and updates to all equipment and software. Some assets may require upgraded technology to achieve the necessary security standard.

Detect. After you have put security measures in place, the next step is to implement the technology to monitor your environment for threats, such as firewall intrusion, distributed denial of service (DDoS), and ransomware attacks.

Respond. There is a saying in the cybersecurity community: “It is not a matter of whether your organization will experience a cyberattack. It is a matter of when.” No matter how good your cybersecurity plan is, you may still experience a threat or a breach. Therefore, it is crucial for your organization, or a designated third party, to decide how to respond to each type of threat. For example, your security tools may handle a threat automatically in one instance, but require a technician’s response in a different type of situation.

Recover. If your organization does experience a breach, you will want to have a recovery plan in place. The plan should spell out what actions should be taken, what tools should be used, and which person or partner will be responsible for recovering data, systems, and applications.

If you would like to improve your 2017 cybersecurity plan, or to inquire about Bryley’s full array of our Managed Cloud Services and Managed IT Services, please contact us at 978.562.6077 or by email at ITExperts@Bryley.com. We’re here for you.

Case Study – Transportation Company Relies on Bryley Systems to Stabilize Technology

The Company: RTA Transit Services, Inc., a private company operating on behalf of the Worcester Regional Transit Authority

The Worcester Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) service area includes over half a million in population and is the second-largest regional transit authority in Massachusetts, serving 35 communities. WRTA maintains a fleet of 47 buses including four clean diesel-electric hybrid buses for 23 fixed routes in Worcester and 10 surrounding communities. WRTA also provides para-transit and special services for elderly and disabled passengers. The organization is a state-run agency, and as mandated by federal law, is operated by a private company—RTA Transit Services, Inc.

The Challenge: Build a Stable, Redundant and Scalable IT Infrastructure

To help manage WRTA daily operations, RTA Transit Services previously relied on a variety of software solutions that each functioned on separate hardware system in the data center—with each software vendor specifying its own needs. To address the issue, RTA and its previous IT solution provider deployed virtual machines to handle the application load. But the architecture did not account for future growth, and the two host virtual servers operated independently. A hardware failure on either one would have taken down half the operation.

“We wanted to transform our data center into a more robust platform that could scale easily and adapt to new technologies as our needs change over time,” said John Carney, RTA Transit Systems General Manager. “We also wanted to add a high level of redundancy since it’s critical that we maintain service to our customers in the event of a system failure or a power problem at one of our operation centers.”

At the time that RTA Transit Services considered these changes, the IT team also planned to deploy a new intelligent transit system from Clever Devices that helps manage bus maintenance and provides bus-schedule updates to customers via the Internet and digital signs at stations. In addition to ensuring Clever Devices would run properly, RTA also needed to migrate all of its operational software systems to the new platform.

This included CyberAudit by Videx for security; a PTM Brokerage Services system that interfaces with an SCM Elderbus system for handling transportation services for handicap passengers and requires virtual-private-network connections; and a HASTUS group-scheduling and planning solution from GIRO that helps with bus scheduling and operations.

“Finding a new technology partner with the expertise to help us build a platform that could handle all of these systems was critical since the level of service we received from our previous IT support vendor had reached its limit,” Carney said. “We also wanted to partner with a solutions provider that could work within our budget but still design and deploy an effective solution.”

The Solution: A Virtual Server Data Center Designed by Bryley Systems

RTA Transit Services appointed a committee to search for an IT solutions provider and considered multiple firms. Bryley Systems won the project based on its ability to offer a team with a wide breadth of experience across all the different technologies involved in the project. “Bryley also has the ability to provide remote support and fix problems behind the scenes, which is important for us going forward,” Carney said. “When we submit a request, Bryley assigns an appropriate-level resource with the right expertise to address the issue.”

Bryley first assessed the overall server infrastructure at WRTA and designed a new platform that could run all of the various software applications effectively and scale as needs emerge. Bryley also documented the components that required upgrades and provided a blueprint for how to add computing resources in the future.

“Bryley developed a comprehensive plan and recommended clear steps to advance to where we wanted to be,” Carney said. “They then broke it down for us into components to help us determine what we could reasonably do so within our budget.”

Because of the complexity, the WRTA hired a consultant to assist its internal resources with the project. The consultant’s recommendations confirmed the need to deploy the infrastructure that Bryley recommended. “The consultant’s viewpoint confirmed that Bryley had the expertise we would require over the long term and gave us confidence that the project would be handled effectively,” Carney said.

The Deployment: Project Moves Forward Even When Unplanned Roadblocks Occur

Based on the value of the Bryley assessment and design as well as the consultant’s recommendation, RTA then asked Bryley to deploy the new data center infrastructure. Bryley deployed a VMware-based virtual server environment with a P4500 series storage area network from HP. The design also included five HP DL360 servers running Microsoft Windows Server operating systems, and high-end Cisco firewall equipment. In addition, Bryley created a dual-location disaster recovery solution with completely-redundant systems and full failover capabilities between the WRTA operations and call-center locations.

As part of the project plan, Bryley assembled the virtual server rack and shipped it to Clever Devices in New York where Bryley experts worked side-by-side with the Clever Devices team to configure the servers. Clever Devices then installed their solution on the servers, which were then shipped back to WRTA.

When the rack arrived back at WRTA, it had sustained minor damage during the shipping process, and the ramps that allow the racks to be rolled into place were missing. But Bryley adjusted quickly and was able to move the rack into place without the ramps. Bryley also assessed the damage to help WRTA with the insurance claim.

“Bryley reacts to changes like this very well and can address project-schedule adjustments caused by circumstances outside of their control,” Carney said. “They helped keep the project moving forward and demonstrated solid project management skills in addition to their technical capabilities.”

Bryley also evaluated the connectivity circuits between the operations and call-center sites and established a virtual-private-network connection between the two buildings that can be accessed by key vendors such as Clever Devices and Elderbus. Bryley then updated the system security with a Cisco ASA appliance and set up 10 desktops from which RTA personnel manage the Clever Devices software.

The Benefits: New Infrastructure Platform Enables Improved Customer Service

WRTA now has 21 virtual Windows servers running on five physical servers at its Grove Street location and three physical servers at the Main Street location. The agency also now has a stable platform on which RTA can run the business as well as add on to in order to meet future needs. RTA will also continue to consult with Bryley when working with software vendors to ensure any new solutions are deployed correctly within the new infrastructure

“Bryley helped us greatly in organizing and stabilizing the environment,” Carney said. “They know how to utilize hardware effectively and prepare for the future by designing scalable systems. In addition to adding high-level redundancy, we also eliminated unnecessary hardware so that we have a data center that’s much easier to manage.”

The Clever Devices application, powered by the platform designed by Bryley, allows bus passengers to use smartphones to check on bus schedules. The software also processes next-stop announcements on buses and next-arrival announcements at stops. In addition, the application also counts passengers.

“With the new technology platform empowering Clever Devices, we are greatly enhancing the level of service we offer to our customers,” Carney said. “By using smartphones, the Web or viewing digital signs, passengers can now see the status of any bus at any moment. This not only helps customers avoid missing buses that are ahead of schedule but also eliminates the frustration of arriving too early for a bus that is running late.”

RTA also plans to rely on the Clever Devices solution to replace its radio system with a VoIP solution. The complexity of this project generated a lot of logistical challenges for which Bryley provided its expertise. “We were not sure if we should replace our radio system with a Verizon VoIP system,” Carney said. “But Bryley met with us and Verizon to help us understand how the solution works and confirm VoIP was the way to go.”

The server infrastructure that Bryley designed and deployed is now the backbone that keeps all IT systems running at WRTA. The overall system also helps improve services to disabled people since RTA has backup systems for monitoring customers that might need rides to medical care appointments. RTA can also move the phone system to a new location if it there’s a problem at the main phone center.

“Bryley has turned out to be the perfect IT partner for us,” Carney added. “They first helped us develop a plan for future technology investments that we can consider as our budget allows. They then built an IT infrastructure platform that supports technologies that allow us to improve the services we offer to customers and ensures we have sufficient redundancy in place should any of our systems experience a failure.”

Major Benefits—WRTA Technology Platform Designed and Deployed by Bryley: 

  • Stability: Enables applications that run the business to perform consistently
  • Sustainability: Supports future enhancements as business requirements change
  • Redundancy: If main location goes down, system automatically fails over to backup site
  • Improved Customer Service: Supports applications that enable efficient phone, texting and Web services to provide passengers with immediate access to bus information

 

For more information on how Bryley can assist your organization with IT goals, please contact us at 978.562.6077, or email us at ITExperts@Bryley.com.

Are You Considering Outsourcing IT Services for Your Business?

If you’re not considering outsourced IT, you should be!

Here are 5 reasons to choose Bryley Systems as your Managed IT Service provider!

  1. Predictable cost

Managed IT Service providers offer “packaged” services for a fixed monthly fee. Budgeting your IT doesn’t get any easier than that!

  1. Improved operational efficiency

Your staff will experience minimal downtime if you have a Managed IT Service provider who performs proactive maintenance and remote remediation services.

  1. Enhanced security and compliance

Every Massachusetts company, by law, is required to have IT security policies in place. Qualified Managed IT Service providers will minimize security risks by implementing these policies for your business. Watch our video on how the law applies to your business.

  1. Trained and certified staff

Reputable Managed IT Service providers invest in training and industry standard certifications for their staff, while also providing an environment in which their team members gain experience. Founded in 1987, Bryley Systems has certifications with the following partners: Microsoft, VMWare, HP, Cisco, Untangle and much more!

  1. Stay focused on your core business

Time and resources are limited in every organization.  Let Bryley Systems focus on your IT so you can do what you do best!

To find out if Bryley Systems is the right Managed IT Service provider for your organization, call the Bryley team at 978-212-5806, email us at ITExperts@Bryley.com, or contact us online.

P.S.: Read more about the value of outsourced IT.

Top 5 Common Support Questions – Asked and Answered

Why, Why, Why? These are the questions the Bryley support team hears every day. We know the answers!

1. Why did it fail?

Computers are extremely complex systems.  As complexity increases, so does the likelihood of failure.  A computer depends on many things to go right for it to work properly.  If the smallest thing goes wrong, it can cause failure of the entire system.  The FRU’s (Field Replaceable Units) within a computer system are becoming fewer and fewer such that if something does go wrong, replacing the entire system is often the best option.  Having done failure analysis in a previous life, I can attest to the fact that the process is difficult and the results are not guaranteed.  Sometimes, my best explanation for failures is “cosmic radiation”… or more likely, a defective hard drive.

2. Why didn’t you know this problem was happening?

Bryley Systems monitors feedback from systems covered under a CSP (Comprehensive Support Program) agreement.  There are a variety of alerts that create service tickets for us to investigate.  Results from Patching, AntiVirus and Malware logs are reviewed to insure issues are addressed before they become major problems.  We can’t possibly see everything that’s going on, but we do have a hand on the pulse of our clients’ systems and we monitor their systems on a regular basis.  If you encounter unanticipated or spurious problems, we respond promptly with the expertise and determination to get you back up and running as soon as possible.

3. Why can’t my AntiVirus and AntiMalware protect me from all the Internet Threats?

This is indeed a common question.  Why not one and done?  The reason is that the threat landscape is changing constantly.  There are hundreds of thousands of virus and malware signatures that are used to protect a single system… but that is not always enough.  Dozens if not hundreds of threats appear daily.  There are Cyber-Crime Syndicates in Russia and the Czech Republic that are selling Ransomware tools to anyone interested in cashing in on the encryptions  for money schemes rampant on the internet today.  Symantec estimated that their clients alone are paying more than $500,000 to these criminals each month.  We work on the principal of minimizing your surface of vulnerability.  Criminals are not lazy, but they will opt for the low hanging fruit every time.  We chose AVG and MalwareBytes as our AntiVirus and Anti-Malware software because they are leaders in the industry.  But unfortunately, there are Zero Day Threats that someone has to receive before the signature can be recognized and distributed to protect other unsuspecting folks.  There are vendors working on “Behavior Recognition” to detect suspected Virus or Ransomware behavior that is now being released.  MalwareBytes is working on a module that will likely be a part of their current offerings to conduct similar detections.  Here at Bryley Systems we are constantly watching how effective these new and yet to be proven products perform and will insure that our clients are provided the best protection we can offer.

4. Why don’t we contact the Police or FBI about this Ransomware infection?

Many people, businesses, and institutions have been affected by Ransomware in the past year.  The criminals usually trick you into running their specially crafted code, and then unbeknownst to the victim, this code encrypts every file it can find that could possibly be useful on the system and on the network.  Each new variant is more clever and devious that the previous.  The victim ends up with folders full of useless files they can no longer open or use and they are forced to pay a ransom to the perpetrator.  We at Bryley do not recommend that you pay.  Although you have suffered loss that is often significant, the dollar threshold for reporting this crime to the authorities, Local Police, State Police, and FBI, is $10,000.  You need to prove this loss before you can open the door.  Unfortunately the door has been left open and the impact is profound.   The best way to thwart this kind of attack is to have a good backup system.  That system should be independent of your working environment to maximize isolation from the attack.   We provide a BUDR (Back Up and Disaster Recovery) solution to minimize the impact of an attack such as this.  In addition to protecting important data from everyday disasters, it will allow our clients to restore their files and get them back up and running in a very short time without paying the ransom demand.  Always have backups.  Make sure they cannot be touched by a malicious attack on your systems.  Someday you may be thankful you did.

5. Why do I need a Password to access my system?

In the spirit of best practices and minimizing your surface of vulnerability, you want to close the door to accessing your system by unauthorized personnel.  Most security breaches occur from the inside.  It could be an employee who is in no way malicious, perhaps just walking by and noticing that your system is open while you’re out to lunch.  They didn’t plan to access your personnel records, but the opportunity presented itself.  The criminals have many ways to attack you.  It can sometimes be easy for them to breach your first line of defense and gain access to your network remotely.  Why make it easy?   Protect yourself and your data with Layers of Security, including passwords that are hard to crack.

Bryley Systems can be YOUR Trusted Advisor.

4 Reasons you need a local managed it service provider

Haw far are you from Hudson MA? Keeping IT local really does matter? Here’s why:

1. Quick Response Time in an Emergency – How far are you from Hudson, MA?

While it’s true that we live in a virtual world where remote access is becoming the norm, there are many situations that are best be handled at your location. For example, if your system has been hacked, remote access may be compromised. As your Managed IT Services provider, a Bryley Systems technical support expert can be quickly dispatched to your offices and have hands-on access to your network to resolve the problem. On-site support will significantly reduce your downtime. And we all know that downtime is a cost you cannot easily recoup.

2. Understanding Your Local Business Environment

As your local provider of Managed IT Services, we are operating in the same geography as you are. If, for example, National Grid is experiencing a problem in a snow storm, Bryley will have the most up-to-date information on the scope of the problem and an ETA for bringing the electric grid back up. You won’t need to sit on hold waiting for “the next available agent” to answer your call. Because Bryley will already know the answer. That’s our job as a local services provider.

3. Proactive Maintenance

Yes, there are routine checks that are performed remotely, but when you need someone on site, your local provider can be there quickly. The ability to work in your physical server room is often the only way a problem can be resolved. Of course, Bryley provides proactive maintenance that will help prevent issues before they occur. But when all else fails, we can just drive over to your office and fix the problem. We know your system. We know your business. We know your people and you know us. It’s an up-close and personal relationship. And that provides a much higher level of confidence and comfort than a voice on the phone.

4. Local Support = Cost Effective Support

IT support services are generally billed hourly and include travel time and expenses. In order to keep your costs down, Bryley has chosen to serve customers within a prescribed radius of their Hudson, Massachusetts office. This translates into a cost savings for you. We’re not flying people out to visit you. We’re not putting our team up in hotel rooms. We’re local and we value your time because time is money. If we’re a bit too far for comfort from your location, we partner with other top-notch service providers who share our “client first” values.

You may be wondering if a local provider of Managed IT Services has the same expertise as some of the “big players” who offer the same services. The short answer is that we do. We’ve been serving the area around Hudson, Massachusetts for nigh unto 30 years! We have all of the requisite certifications and decades of experience that we bring to bear for each and every client. Bryley Systems is an award-winning Managed IT Services provider and Managed Cloud Services Provider recognized for excellence by CRN, Penton Technologies, MSPmentor, and Clarity Total IT Services Provider (TSP) List.

 

Please call the Bryley team for more information at 978-562-6077. Or contact us by email at ITExperts@bryley.com.

Five reasons to consider Managed Cloud over Public Cloud

Gavin Livingstone, Bryley Systems Inc.

Public Cloud – hosted and provided primarily by Amazon (21% market share), Microsoft (12%), Google (8%), and other large organizations1 – is growing, and many are taking advantage of its scalability, security, and availability.

However, Public Cloud services are not for everyone; for the uninitiated, they can be a confusing list of acronyms and options.  For example:

  • The options at Amazon Web Services (AWS) spread across 14 categories (Compute, Storage & Content Delivery, Database, etc.) with 73 different services (Amazon EC2, AWS Lambda, Amazon Route 53, etc.).
  • Microsoft Azure offers 12 categories (Web + Mobile, Intelligence + Analytics, Developer Tools, etc.) with 74 services; two of which have four sub-services.

Pricing is workable; for most services, you pay for what you use with no up-front costs and (usually) no termination fees, but it is typically a per-minute billing that needs to be monitored closely (similar to electricity and other metered utilities).

Although Public Cloud vendors use top-notch security and state-of-the-art data centers, there are some considerations with Public Cloud services:

  • The geographic location of data (data residency) can be out-of-country
  • Service Level Agreements (SLAs) can be somewhat restrictive
  • Multitenancy can lead to slowdowns and security concerns
  • Support can be subpar and, potentially, offshore

Managed Clouds2 are often built on Private Cloud platforms with dedicated hardware owned by the Managed Cloud provider, although some location-indifferent Public Cloud services (like encrypted backups and Active/Passive failover3) may be incorporated.  These services are customized to meet the exact needs of the client organization and are often billed at a fixed monthly fee that scales by end-user or by resource needs, rather than per-minute usage; Managed Cloud services allow the organization to focus on its business and leave the IT/Cloud management to a trusted partner.

Five reasons to consider Managed Cloud:

  1. Data residency can be restricted to in-country only
  2. SLAs can be aligned with the client’s business goals
  3. Technical support is typically dedicated and top notch
  4. The dedicated hardware in a Private Cloud can be more secure
  5. Proactive maintenance leads to greater optimization, reliability, and security

1For current Public Cloud market share and future predictions, please see Joe Panettieri’s article Cloud Market Share Research:  AWS, Microsoft and Business Adoption from July 10, 2016 in CHANNELe2e.

2See Taylor Rhodes of rackspace® HOSTING in her June 4, 2014 article “What is Managed Cloud”.

3Please see Wikipedia’s High-availability cluster.

What Does a Virtual CTO Do for Your Company?

Roy Pacitto
V.P. of Business Development

When and why would you need to hire a Virtual CTO?

In an age where the technology landscape is moving faster than ever, having a clear strategic direction and solid plans for execution are mission critical.

Virtual CTO (vCTO) or Virtual CIO (vCIO) professional service partners provide cost effective expertise and solutions that enable competitive advantage via technology.

Basics of vCTO services include working closely with senior management to:

  • Establish governance process and clear direction
  • Evaluate the “As-Is” IT infrastructure
  • Determine the optimal “To-Be” IT infrastructure and requirements to meet company goals
  • Establish, prioritize and assign time-frames to the list of IT initiatives that enable achievement of stated business goals
  • Effectively execute to plans

A successful vCTO partnership yields results and accolades:

  • A vCTO service pays for itself multiple times over as important initiatives get proper attention and the resources necessary to accomplish goals, at a reasonable cost
  • “We now recognize we’re not technology experts and are each best focusing on our individual areas of expertise!” This Bryley client can now utilize people and skillsets where they are most needed and to their fullest advantage.
  • Identifies when existing IT systems approach capacity and prevents failures
  • Evaluation from a happy Bryley client: “Our vCTO service ensures advanced
    planning of technologies necessary to support future company growth that may not otherwise be realized.”

What would having your own vCTO service mean for your organization? In 3 words: Peace of Mind!

Migrating Postini users to Google Apps for Business; also, an alternative

As mentioned in our August 2012 Bryley Tips and Information, Google has moved Google Message Security (GMS)/Postini into Google Apps for Business and will migrate all GMS/Postini customers to Google Apps for Business by the end of 2013.

 

Google will migrate GMS/Postini users gradually, focusing initially on its large, direct-billed customers and eventually tackling those customers purchasing through GMS/Postini resellers (Bryley Systems is a GMS/Postini reseller.).  By December 31, 2013, all former GMS/Postini customers should be migrated.

 

Google has not yet disclosed significant details about this migration process, but we believe that it will require, at a minimum, these steps for each customer:

  • Setup a Google Apps for Business account
  • Export GMS/Postini rules and import them into Google Apps for Business
  • Migrate user accounts from GMS/Postini to Google Apps for Business
  • Change the MX Record for the email-server address

 

If you use Microsoft Exchange or Lotus Notes for your email, the email-protection-and-filtering component of Google Apps for Business will be available at the same price through your agreement term.  However, your price could increase if you add any other Google Apps for Business features to your account.

 

McAfee, a security company owned by Intel Corporation, offers an alternative to those that do not wish to migrate to Google Apps for Business.  Their service is McAfee® SaaS Email Protection and Continuity(MEPC).  (Bryley Systems is a long-term reseller of MEPC and other McAfee security products.)

 

MEPC features include:

  • Spam filtering,
  • Protection against malware and SMTP-based attacks, and
  • Continuity.  (Continuity provides web-based access to email, both receiving as well as sending, when your email server is down.  Also, once your email server is running, your web-based emails automatically resynchronize with your email server.)

 

McAfee also offers:

  • McAfee® SaaS Web Protection – Web-content filtering
  • McAfee® SaaS Email Archiving – Stand-along email archiving
  • McAfee® SaaS Email Encryption Service – Email encryption add-on to MEPC

 

For details, please call us at 978.562.6077.  Or, email Sales@Bryley.com.

Windows Server options

Microsoft Windows Server 2012 will be released September 4th.  Microsoft streamlined server-edition options to four and discontinued Home Server, Small Business Server, and Enterprise Edition.

 

Windows Server 2012 editions:

  • Foundation – Up to 15 users; OEM-only, so purchased with hardware
  • Essentials – Up to 25 users with cloud-enablement features
  • Standard – Unlimited users; includes two virtual instances
  • Data Center – Unlimited users and virtual instances

 

Server discontinuations:

  • Windows Small Business Server (SBS) 2011 will be discontinued on June 30, 2013.  To get SBS functionality, you will need to purchase Windows Server and Exchange Server separately.  (Software Assurance, Microsoft’s maintenance option, for SBS has been discontinued as of July 31, 2012.)
  • Windows Enterprise Server has been discontinued
  • Windows Home Server has been discontinued

 

Specific editions with pricing are noted atWindows Server 2012 Editions.

Google moves Postini spam-filtering into Google Apps

Google purchased Postini in 2007 to provide spam-filtering and related security and compliance services to Google enterprise-services clients; they initially branded Postini under Google Messaging, but have now integrated Postini into Google Apps for Business.  They will retire the Postini brand name in 2013.

 

Users of Google Message Security (spam filtering) will be transitioned into Google Apps for Business; Google Message Discovery (spam filtering with archiving) users will be transitioned into Google Apps for Business and Google Vault.

 

Pricing will stay the same for users of spam filtering and archiving.  Those that expand into other Google Apps for Business services (like Google Drive or Gmail) will see a price increase on their next renewal date.

 

The announcement from Google’s Adam Sawes, Product Manager – Google Apps, is at Continuing the transition from Postini to Google Apps.  For additional information please visit the Postini Transition Resource Center provided by Google.

 

Our belief: While Google will continue to provide Postini to customers under the Google Apps for Business banner, they will recommend migrating to other services within Google Apps for Business and will make it harder to remain Postini-centric within the Google Apps world.