Archive

Archive for August, 2011

Phishing

August 31st, 2011 No comments

Surfing the Internet poses some very real dangers - one of those being phishing. The sole purpose of phishing is an attempt by a criminal to trick you into revealing personal information, while appearing to be from a valid or legitimate source, such as your ISP, hosting provider, financial institution or consultant.

I recently took an online test to determine - my ability to recognize phishing emails or websites. I aced it, but I’ve been in this industry for some time. Countless individuals fall prey to phishing schemes everyday.

Identity theft is on the rise. Don’t be it’s next victim! Do NOT give out your usernames and passwords, financial information, PIN numbers, your mother’s maiden name,  Social Security number, birthday, pet’s name or any other personal information that may help identify you. This information is used by phishers in an attempt to steal accounts, money, credit card information or your identity.

Please be wary of any message that asks you for personal information.

Categories: Security Tags:

Executing Marketing Strategies

August 29th, 2011 No comments

Marketing is critically important - to jump-start any new business. Broad access to cutting edge technology has made it increasingly possible for start-ups to compete with established brick and mortar establishments.

Understanding your market - What niche do your competitors own? Would you fare better competing for that niche or creating your own? What will make you remember-able in your prospects eyes? What value could you add to entice them to go with your firm or organization?

Constantly refine your strategy - Once you’ve settled on your initial marketing strategy, tracking and measuring its success is essential. You can’t grow your business on a marginally successful strategy. Marketing strategies need to be refined, to eliminate what doesn’t work from what shows promise.

New businesses are created every day – that could use your products or service - Every new business has to procure products and services somewhere, and if not from you, certainly from your competitor. If you’re not reaching out to every newly registered business in your local community, you’re missing out on a huge sector of the market. And it’s so easy to find them. Every new business in the U.S. has to register with their respective Secretary of State. These registrations are farmed by local chambers of commerce and directory services. I’ve seen lists that sell for as low as fourteen cents per contact. In many cases, one new client from that list could pay for an entire campaign.

Once you’ve established your niche - tweak your approach and close techniques, identify what works and repeat that over and over and over and over. Persistence is key.

Categories: Business Tips, eCommerce Hosting Tags:

Hostirian LLC Announced Today That It Has Become a Sponsor of Capital Innovators. Hostirian Will Award $5,000 in Services to Five Selected Entrepreneurial Candidates

August 25th, 2011 No comments

Hostirian LLC, a leading provider of business-class shared, VPS, dedicated servers, collocation and cloud-based hosting platforms, announced today that it has become a sponsor of Capital Innovators. Hostirian will award $5,000 in services to each of the five selected entrepreneurial candidates, to be announced on August 31, 2011.

St. Louis, MO, August 25, 2011 -  Hostirian LLC (http://www.hostirian.com), a leading provider of business-class shared, VPS, dedicated servers, collocation and cloud-based hosting platforms, announced today that it has become a sponsor of Capital Innovators (http://capitalinnovators.com). Hostirian will award $5,000 in services to each of the five selected entrepreneurial candidates to be announced on August 31, 2011 at the Jazz Bistro Theatre, located in the historic Grand Center district in St. Louis. The event is hosted by Tech.li, an upcoming online news service for tech startups. For those that want to attend the event, please visit EventBrite.com.

Capital Innovators provides funding, resources, and a community of support to take startup ventures to the next stage. Capital Innovators offers entrepreneurs the unique opportunity to receive both funding and mentoring services for their potential high-growth technology start-up venture while also providing numerous supporting services and resources so that the entrepreneur can focus on the core business rather than worrying about administrative functions.

“We recognize the importance of Capital Innovators’ success in assisting the emerging high-tech companies of St. Louis and want to help,” said Brian L. Matthews, Hostirian LLC. “Capital Innovators’ approach prepares up-and-coming companies for the next stage of capital investment and scaling their businesses.”

In addition to the funding, mentorship and office space provided by Capital Innovators, its local business sponsors provide accounting, legal, marketing and IT services for each class of portfolio companies.

About Hostirian LLC:

Hostirian LLC, a division of River City Internet Group (www.rcig.net), was founded to meet the needs of regional businesses seeking a local web hosting partner capable of providing state-of-the-art and cost-effective hosting facilities.  Hostirian offers shared and managed web hosting services to businesses operating mission critical, multi-functional websites. Hostirian’s core focus is to offer its customers comprehensive outsourced website and application hosting solutions.

About Capital Innovators:

Capital Innovators is part of a joint effort to provide micro-seed capital investments in companies that are developing information technologies. The founders Judy Sindecuse and Hal Gentry sought to remedy an existing gap in funding and mentorship for emerging IT companies. Capital Innovators is dedicated to fostering very early-stage technology innovation and growth in the Saint Louis region.

Capital Innovators is a part of Start-Up St. Louis, which aims to foster entrepreneurship in the Greater St. Louis region, and is supported by its civic partners: The St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association (RCGA), the Partnership for Downtown St. Louis, and the St. Louis Development Corporation.

###

Hostirian LLC
Brian L. Matthews

Capital Innovators
Judy Sindecuse

Categories: Hostirian LLC Tags:

System Monitoring Services Explained

August 24th, 2011 No comments

In today’s competitive global marketplace, it is essential to ensure that your customers can see you at any time, day or night. Even short outages impact your business.

System monitoring services provide everything from simple to very advanced server, network and website monitoring and reporting services with a fast, effective and automated method for checking a variety of services. Whether you are monitoring a single server or hundreds of servers distributed around the world, these packages make it easy to manage your monitoring configuration and view real-time monitoring data.

The number and types of services that monitoring packages track varies, but most offer at least three monitors that are checked in varying intervals (generally one to fifteen minutes).

These services and others should be a part of your disaster recovery and business continuity plan.

Advanced Solutions

If your business depends on your online presence, you need an advanced solution that monitors your entire online infrastructure. Today’s websites are becoming increasingly complex, incorporating dynamic content derived from multiple sources, backend web services, email, chat and other communication mechanisms.

There are lower end packages offered FREE, as well as advanced options that track your entire infrastructure.  Some of the services most commercial packages track are HTTP and HTTPS, POP and Secure POP, IMAP and Secure IMAP, SMTP and Secure SMTP, DNS, FTP, SSH, MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQL Server databases, RTSP streaming media, ICMP ping, and arbitrary TCP/IP ports.

Options

The types of options offered are generally shorter intervals between monitoring, the number of monitoring locations, alerts by email, additional monitors, web page content filtering, HTTP password protection monitoring, monthly reports, online statistics, a control panel, DNS monitoring, public statistics, ping monitoring, alert failure limit, custom time zones, error details, web server monitoring, POP3 and SMTP email server monitoring, FTP server monitoring, multiple alert contacts, XML/RSS statistics and a statistics download.

With some you can create user accounts with restricted access. With others you can follow 301 or 302 redirects and monitor the resulting web page.

How far back can monitoring statistics and reports be archived?

Free plans are typically only archived for a few months, but with most packages, detailed statistics can be archived forever.

What about failover?

With many packages, their monitoring infrastructure is architected to withstand failure of any component. If one monitoring node is inaccessible, checks begin immediately from a alternate node and continue until the original node returns to service so that your servers never go unmonitored.

Intelligent Services

Some packages can actually analyze your online presence and intelligently determine the services that need to be monitored. Even with the most basic of online businesses, there can be 15 or more critical services that can impact your business.

What is it you need to know and why?

You need to know the status of your network (network performance) and availability every single minute so you can react immediately to any service disruption. It’ s always better to know first before your clients starting calling with issues. Monitoring packages also help determine hosting company’s compliance with their Service Level Agreements.  (SLA)

False Positives

Are these packages failsafe? False positives have been a problem with some packages, but as global resources become more affordable, confirmation of service outages has become more reliable.

Other uses for monitoring packages

You can extract sales and marketing data about the quality of your infrastructure

Use the same tools to gain more knowledge about the infrastructure of your competitors.

Use as evidence with suppliers of your infrastructure.

As a manager

As a manager you may already have tools for monitoring your infrastructure from the inside, but these packages give insight to the end-user experience. You’ll not only be able to properly analyze the availability of your company’s services and estimate lost revenue, but you’ll also have the information you need to make demands on external network and service providers if they’re not living up to your expectations, or their SLAs.

What are some the packages available?

  • NPG   Network Management and Monitoring
  • Panopta
  • Pingdom   Pingdom Web site monitoring for 100% uptime. Measure your downtime.
  • AlertSite   Web Site Monitoring and Web Performance Management Solutions From AlertSite
  • Internet Uptime Monitor   Internet Uptime Monitor – Monitoring Server Software for Your Website
  • Hyperspin   Hyperspin Website Monitoring, Web Server Monitoring Service
  • Site Uptime   SiteUptime – Website Monitoring Service
  • Alertra   Alertra Website Monitoring Service
  • Uptime Auditor   Uptime Auditor – Check if your website is online now!
  • ezwebsitemonitoring   EZ Website Monitoring • Free Keyword Tracking & Uptime Checking
  • ServerMojo   Remote server monitoring – check your dedicated or virtual server uptime and get notifications for free – servermojo.com!
  • Nagios   Nagios – The Industry Standard in IT Infrastructure Monitoring
  • Cacti   Cacti: The Complete RRDTool-based Graphing Solution
  • Zenoss  Zenoss Open Source Server and Network Monitoring – Core and Enterprise
  • PRTG   PRTG Network Monitor – intuitive network monitoring software
  • MRTG   Network Admins’ favorite free tools – Scrutinizer and MRTG
  • Hyperic   Systems Monitoring, Server Monitoring & Systems Management Software | Hyperic
  • Webmetrics   Website Monitoring, Load Testing & Web Performance Management | Webmetrics

Categories: Featured Articles Tags:

Is Your In-House IT Department Prepared?

August 23rd, 2011 7 comments

Is your in-house IT department prepared – for brown outs, black outs, personnel shortages, ISP issues, internal and external sabotage, equipment failures, new regulations (email retention) and a whole host of other issues?

Recently, an Internet forum with – thousands of members was hacked, and in the process the criminals deleted their backups, stole email and credit card information, then disseminated it across the Internet. Could this happen to your in-house network? Hackers are constantly on the prowl looking for openings to exploit internal networks as well. Is yours protected?

How would you as an owner know if your IT department was prepared? Do you have disaster recovery and business continuity plans in place? Are they routinely reviewed and updated? Do you strategize with your IT personnel, or do they basically run the show? If they said you needed to be PCI DSS compliant, would you know what they were talking about?

Managing IT for multiple departments requires some give and take - Is your IT department empowered to make smart decisions? Not all IT geeks are business savvy, so my question to you would be, “Do your departments talk to each other?” HR certainly has unique requirements, as do Sales, Customer Support and Admin. Do they operate in a vacuum or together as a cohesive unit? An appropriate amount of give and take between departments increases awareness of your business’s core focus and mission.

Primary Network Completes Comprehensive Redesign of its Corporate Website

August 19th, 2011 No comments

Primary Network, a leading provider of Internet access solutions, announced today that it has completed a comprehensive redesign of its corporate website, featuring a sophisticated, yet easy-to-navigate layout as well as customer-specific product sections that intuitively take visitors to information about its diverse connectivity products, from high speed DSL services to nationwide T-1’s.

Saint Louis, MO (August 19, 2011) - Primary Network, a leading provider of Internet access solutions, announced today that it has completed a comprehensive redesign of its corporate website, featuring a sophisticated, yet easy-to-navigate layout as well as customer-specific product sections that intuitively take visitors to information about its diverse connectivity products, from high speed DSL services to nationwide T-1’s.

The redesigned site reflects Primary Network’s commitment to excellence, providing visitors with greater value for their connectivity experience. The new site features Primary Network’s Forever Support. It also features LiveChat, which is set up for Pre and Post Sales Level 1 and Level 2 Support.

“We were one of the first Internet Service Providers in the industry to consistently provide business class solutions and best practices to everyone who visits our website,” explained Ken Cox, Vice President of Operations. “As a pioneer in the ISP industry, we’ve always felt that it’s our responsibility to provide content that helps visitors make informed decisions.”

Major improvements to the Primary Network site now include more relevant, meaningful content to different connectivity sectors. Information is grouped by market segment and solutions where visitors can get the information they need quickly.

About Primary Network
Founded in 1995, Primary Network provides nationwide and regional Internet connectivity solutions from its geographically centered St. Louis data centers. Leveraging an advanced routing technology with fiber connectivity to multiple carriers, Primary Network empowers businesses with multiple enterprise class access solutions, designed for stability, security and scalability.

In addition to offering T-1 dedicated Internet access services in thousands of communities throughout the U.S., Primary Network also offers a “Next Generation” Metro Ethernet Service, Remote Network Monitoring Service and High-Speed DSL Internet Service. We make this commitment to each and every customer – to provide around-the-clock knowledgeable support, when you need it and how you want it.

###

Contact Information

River City Internet Group
Ken Cox
(800) 615-9349
ken.cox@rcig.net
http://www.rcig.net

 

Categories: Primary Network Tags:

Getting Yourself Out There

August 19th, 2011 1 comment

I read a lot – of articles everyday. Some strike home harder than others. I read something this afternoon that took me back to the ’80′s and my fist formal sales training in Chicago. It reminded me that you can’t be everywhere at the same time, but you do have to be on your prospects mind, in some manner, when they’re ready to buy. How that happens is what separates average sales reps from sales champions.

Prospects more often buy – from a sales rep or company they know, like and trust. Even though it seems that everyone buys on price alone, many successful reps and businesses sell on value, offering business class solutions that fill a void, resolve issues or provide a growth opportunity.

I’ve heard that sales is simply a numbers game – spread the word, maximize appointments, make the appropriate number of proposals, then statistically expect a resulting number of closed deals. If only it were that easy. There is a psychology to sales. Certainly, getting yourself out there is important. Keeping yourself out there is so much more important. By that, I mean when the time comes for that prospect to pull the trigger, will you be in their sights? If they’ve opt’d in to your monthly email broadcast or have a scratch pad with your picture and contact info on it sitting on their desk, would that help put you on their short list? Being in the right place at the right time should not be an accident. It should be a strategic component in your overall plan to augment your sales efforts.

Categories: Business Tips Tags:
Privacy Policy | TOS