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Proactively Managing Security Risks in an Evolving IT Landscape

The last year has changed the way we see and understand the world. It has proven that technology can be a game changer for economies, governments, enterprises, and people.

In today’s IT landscape, it has never been more important to stay ahead of the curve, and organisations are increasingly looking for support from managed IT service providers (MSP). An MSP can proactively monitor your IT infrastructure for updates or potential threats, seamlessly fill in-house skills gaps, and provide support to remote workers.

As remote and hybrid working is being implemented widely, it is important to understand how these new work practices could dramatically increase organisations’ exposure to cyberthreats. In the wake of numerous high-profile breaches and rapid digital transformation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, organisations across industries are looking to increase investments in security measures. According to a 2020 PwC survey, more than half (55%) of technology and security executives plan to increase security budgets in 2021. Now is the time to create a resilient cyber security programme that can help your business stay safe and protect your confidential data.

Given the rapidly changing technology landscape and increasing number of cyber threats, hiring an MSP can help businesses remain agile, control costs, quickly respond to competitive opportunities, get ahead of potential threats, and align IT with evolving business objectives.

In this blog we highlight the top five benefits of working with a MSP:

1. Increased transparency while working remotely

Due to the reduced accessibility and visibility that comes with remote working, more often than not, internal IT teams do not have the capacity to keep up with the latest cybersecurity concerns, such as firewall management, endpoint protection, malware updates, and advanced threat prevention. This is where an MSP specialising in security comes in. They can proactively monitor advanced threats and offer incident response and event investigation services to easily manage security and IT risks while working from home. This provides more transparency and prevents enterprise-wide intrusions.

They can also enhance endpoint security by enabling server security, patch updates, firewalls, and installing software against viruses. If data is compromised, it can lead to irreparable losses and damage brand reputation. Therefore, it is vital to have a secure connection and end-to-end transparency of all the devices being used for work purposes.

2. Improved cybersecurity

An MSP can take a lot of work off your hands when it comes to detecting and addressing vulnerabilities by using a more proactive approach and anticipating potential threats, especially for targeted cyberattacks.
Another added benefit – they are available (up to 24 hours a day in some cases) to take calls and resolve issues on the go, no matter where you are located.
Some MSPs, including Paradyn, can provide advanced cybersecurity offerings such as CIS Controls, to provide highly integrated approaches to security there. CIS Critical Security Controls are a globally recognised recommended set of actions for cyber defence that provide specific and actionable ways to stop today’s most pervasive and dangerous attacks.

3. Helps with compliance

Most industries are becoming increasingly regulated, particularly in terms of safeguarding customer data. It can be difficult to implement cyber security plans that also ensure compliance. If your cybersecurity infrastructure does not adhere to new and updated compliance terms, you might find yourself in breach of those regulations. Again, your MSP can come to the rescue as they stay on top of such changes in the industry, providing expertise and systems to help your company meet the various regulations, such as GDPR compliance,.

4. Access to the latest developments in the IT industry

MSPs are equipped with the latest knowledge and skills required to solve IT issues. They are highly trained and accredited, are aware of evolving trends and closely monitor the cybersecurity landscape. As a result, they can provide your business with the proactive support and systems your business needs. Additionally, as subject matter experts, they are capable of providing the best advice relating to your IT needs and safeguarding your data.

5. Peace of mind for businesses
Using a managed IT service provider can give businesses the time to focus on what they do best – running their business – and in turn, free up staff to focus on their core roles. Internal IT teams can use their time to extend services and innovate, rather than having to deal with added strain.

Additionally, as more organisations choose to stay remote or adopt hybrid models, business owners have the reassurance that their data and devices are protected by a dedicated team.

While the past year has posed a number of challenges, it also gave rise to new business opportunities and expedited developments in cybersecurity. In 2020, Paradyn launched its TotalView Operations Centre in response to the significant increase in malicious threats being faced by businesses during COVID-19.

This new facility has increased Paradyn’s managed service capability and is helping Irish private and public sector organisations to remain secure against an increasing volume of cyber threats. It also enables proactive monitoring of the potential cyber threats associated with remote working. This includes the overview of mobile device management solutions, which ensures that staff working from home can only access company networks through authorised and secure devices.

The TotalView Operations Centre gives organisations a 360-degree view of their network through Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) modules. Simply put, it helps with real-time visibility across the organisations information security systems. It also provides endpoint patching – a process of distributing and applying updates to software. These patches are often necessary to correct vulnerabilities in the software. To add to these features, the TotalView Operations Centre can also provide a broad set of integrated functionalities within a single platform with Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR). The end goal of using a SOAR platform is to improve the efficiency of physical and digital security operations. Ultimately, this level of integration and always-on monitoring system helps organisations get the most value of their cybersecurity investments.

Paradyn’s managed security services can provide a holistic view of your business environment, no matter how simple or complex it is. Why not contact us today to find out how we can improve your operational security while reducing costs.

Click here to contact us today to to discuss your security from Paradyn

The Security Process with Paul Casey – Paradyn COO

Paul Casey, chief operations officer, Paradyn: ‘A lot of cybersecurity is about getting the boring stuff right’

As anyone in the industry will tell you, there is more to cybersecurity than simply information technology: human factors are the main vector for attack, and, in the world today, the technology is the business.

 

Paul Casey, chief operations officer at Paradyn, said that with its security service practice, the goal is to help its clients with a holistic and best-practice framework to secure business assets and resources.

The bulk of Paradyn’s clients are in the government and enterprise sectors, both areas in which cybersecurity has shot up the agenda of management.

“From an IT or cybersecurity point of view, they tend to be more sophisticated than a mom-and-pop shop on the corner and would tend to have some level of internal IT, whether it’s focused on infrastructure or even has some focus on cybersecurity,” he said.

The company works with its clients to understand the business, where and how it is exposed to threats and then from there develop a strategy for keeping things secure.

Even organisations at this level where security has never been skimped on have had to learn lessons of late. And it is a tale that will be familiar to just about everyone.

“The last 18 months have put the focus on cybersecurity so much. Working practices have changed. Previously, most organisations had everyone inside the castle. Yes, you had some remote workers on the road, but generally you had a lot of control. Then a switch was flicked,” he said.

With the shift to remote work, new opportunities were created not only for businesses to move online and workers to consider relocating, but also for criminals seeking to profit from confusion and uncertainty.

The organised crime aspect of cyberattacks is what is truly different from the past, when hackers worked for bragging rights or simply to be a nuisance.

“Cybercrime is a business and a lot more money is involved [than before]. You can contract and hire ransomware organisations and split the profits. Frankly, it has been commodified,” Casey said.

The rational response to this world of professionalised crime is to accept the arms race is going on and to respond with equally professional countermeasures, he said. However, this requires more than throwing resources at the problem. Instead, the first step is to understand the risk.

“Obviously everybody is worried about ransomware, but it’s at the end of the process. It’s what happens after someone has given away credentials, clicked on something they shouldn’t have or something hasn’t been patched. We’re looking to take a step back and take a deep look at the business.

“It’s easy to get caught up in thinking ‘there’s a shiny firewall I need to buy’ or ‘I can get this software, but, ultimately, cybersecurity is a much wider thing. It’s about company culture, it’s about leadership, and it’s about business processes. A lot of cybersecurity is about getting the boring stuff right,” he said.

Casey recommends businesses look at the Center for Internet Security’s list of Controls, version eight of which is now available free online.

“CIS Controls is a set of best practices, and it forms part of what we use to identify, develop, validate, promote and sustain best practice solutions for cyber defence,” he said.

Paradyn uses a three-stage ‘gap analysis framework’ derived from the CIS Controls, during which it reviews clients’ IT infrastructure estate in order to chart the gaps in not only systems, but also processes and policies.

Casey said that the question of people and processes was too often ignored: “You do need the server guys, you do need the firewall people, but you also need to get the business processes right.”

Of course, with remote working the question of processes becomes even more urgent.

“If you look back ten years ago, what were you securing? You had on-premise users and an on-premise e-mail server, and possibly an on-premise database server. Now you have cloud to manage, possibly multiple ones, plus people all over the place, then the CEO comes down and says they want Outlook Anywhere or Office 365,” he said.

From inventory and control of hardware and software assets up to penetration testing, the right controls help protect organisations, and they also enable compliance with measures such as GDPR.

GDPR, though, is not the be all and end all of data, and issues such as intellectual property should be in the frame.

“GDPR is good, as it brought great emphasis on data, [however], the thing that I talk to companies about is that GDPR is concerned about PII [personally identifying information], but there’s more to data than PII. A lot of organisations put a lot of work into GDPR compliance, but it stops there,” Casey said.

“Cybersecurity is not just three things, it’s a thousand small things,” he said.

Click here to discuss your security requirements in more detail.

Paradyn secures €2.8 million in managed IT security deals with local authorities across Ireland

Paul Casey, Chief Operations Officer, Paradyn, and Cillian McCarthy, CEO, Paradyn

Paul Casey, Chief Operations Officer, Paradyn, and Cillian McCarthy, CEO, Paradyn

 

Paradyn has completed 14 security deals with local authorities worth €2.8 million in the past year

Paradyn, Ireland’s only end-to-end IT and communications service provider, today announces that it has won €2.8 million in new IT security contracts with local authorities across Ireland over the past year. With an increased need for comprehensive cybersecurity protection for local authority staff and citizens accessing online public services, Paradyn has secured new and enhanced contracts with 14 local authorities across Ireland.

The provider has seen a significant increase in demand for services such as managed firewall, security event monitoring and alerting, integrated network and endpoint security, and security operation centre (SOC) as-a-service.

Paradyn has also launched a new service based on CIS Critical Security Controls, which allows them to deliver a recommended set of actions for improved cyber defence for local authorities that are based on global best practice guidelines. Five local authorities have signed up for this service with combined deal values of over €150K.

The new and enhanced security offerings from Paradyn has helped to allow secure remote working for local authority staff, vastly improved email and web defence, provided proactive and reactive support for IT problems, reduced cyber-attacks, and enhanced protection of citizen data.

By leveraging Paradyn’s expertise in the area of managed IT services, local authorities have also been able to free up their time to focus on key administration and governance tasks, thus allowing them to provide better and more efficient services to citizens. It also mitigates security risks and reduces network downtime, meaning employees and citizens availing of public IT services, such as library or council office Wi-Fi hotspots, can enjoy a safe and secure user experience.

Last year, Paradyn designed and built a Security Operations Centre in Cork to actively monitor, alert and remediate security threats for customers in real-time. Additionally, it also established a TotalView Centre as a response to the significant increase in malicious threats being faced by Irish organisations during the pandemic, particularly with the shift to remote working.

Cillian McCarthy, CEO, Paradyn, said: “It’s reassuring to see that so many local authorities across Ireland are investing in proactive and integrated security defences to protect their systems, data and people. With remote working and online self-service options for the public becoming so important over the past 12 months, local authorities understood that they needed to considerably improve the security protection they offer both staff and citizens.

“We’re delighted that so many local authorities have turned to Paradyn to gain a more proactive and holistic approach to cybersecurity., particularly for CIS Controls which allows them to benchmark their security capabilities against global best practices.

“Over the years we have worked with many local authorities across Ireland, we value their partnerships and always deliver services that match their evolving needs. Our specialist expertise allows us to deliver high-quality managed security services, especially as we face increased security challenges due to changing ways of working and the move to online public services.”

Click here to discuss this project or any other Paradyn projects in more detail.

Simplify GDPR compliance with CIS Controls

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was first introduced in Europe on 25th May 2018. Since then, every organisation that handles E.U. citizen data has been responsible for implementing appropriate technical and organisational measures to ensure that data processing is performed in accordance with the regulation.

The nature of the internet is fragile thus making cybersecurity and compliance a very important function of business strategy for any organisation in 2021. GDPR is considered to be the most important change in data privacy regulation in 20 years as it helps protect personal information of all E.U. citizens and notifies them of any data breaches.

In our previous blog we discussed the many ways in which CIS Controls can help with securing the IT infrastructure. In this blog, we highlight the range of resources CIS Controls can offer organisations to comply with GDPR. The controls outline the best practices in cybersecurity solutions that not only make your organisation compliant but can also help in dealing with cyber-threats that could emerge in the future.

BUILDING TRUST

The unprecedented ransomware attack on the HSE demonstrates just how devastating cybercrime can actually be. According to PwC’s 2020 Irish Economic Crime Survey, 51% of more than 70 organisations surveyed in Ireland said they had experienced some type of cyber fraud in the past two years.

Cybercriminals just need one chance to enter IT systems, whereas defenders must be constantly vigilant against any potential intruders. By implementing best practice CIS Controls, organisations can enhance compliance with existing security requirements and build-in a more holistic control framework within the organisation.

With the GDPR governing every piece of data from an E.U. citizen, companies worldwide have the opportunity to approach data with a more ethical, customer-first attitude, and build trust during the process.

HELPS WITH DECISION-MAKING

The 20 CIS critical security controls (CSC) ensure the application of cybersecurity practices to the most vulnerable areas in the organisation. The controls are grouped into three tiers: Basic Controls, Foundational Controls and Organisational Controls. Once the Basic Controls are implemented, you’ve met the minimum standards needed for cyber security. By using a layered approach, IT leaders can be more proactive and future-proof their organisations against increasingly powerful and complex threats.

The same protocols can also guide organisations in building a robust compliance framework that can help with GDPR regulations and data privacy. They also increase visibility across the IT infrastructure of the organisation.

By implementing CIS Controls, organisations can take control of their cybersecurity landscape, while ensuring they meet increasingly stringent compliance regulations.

UNLOCK MORE ORGANISATIONAL VALUE

So three years in, we can confidently say that GDPR has changed the way organisations look at privacy now. However, as we all know too well, threats keep escalating and it’s increasingly difficult to remain fully secure. Given the scale of remote working since the pandemic and the additional risks this can also bring the need to address cyber threats remains top priority.

That’s why CIS Controls are so effective in adding much needed layers of protection. Cyber criminality is only going to increase as hackers use increasingly sophisticated methods to make their attacks. However, they typically target areas of weakness and that’s why it’s so important to ensure your service provider implements an integrated security approach across your entire infrastructure.
With increasing volumes of online data to be securely managed in a hybrid working world, we highly recommend CIS Controls. They provide a holistic and best-practice framework to securing your business assets and resources, no matter how complex.

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CIS Controls: The Guide to Safeguarding Your Organisation

The last year and all that came with it caught everyone off guard. No matter the size, every organisation had to accelerate the pace at which they adopt digital technologies, making it a very interesting time for IT companies managing this change.

As cyberthreats become more sophisticated in a remote working world, organisations cannot afford to be complacent about their cybersecurity plans. One such offering that promises to optimise the cybersecurity landscape of your organisation is CIS Controls. The CIS Critical Security Controls are the recommended set of actions for cyber defense that provide specific and actionable ways to stop today’s most pervasive and dangerous attacks.

These set of controls are globally accepted best practices that help in achieving compliance and gives you more control over your organisations systems. They are also regularly monitored and updated to keep up with the ever-changing cyber security ecosystem.

WHAT CHALLENGES CAN CIS CONTROLS SOLVE?
The are many challenges associated with getting the right cyber-security program for your organisation particularly if you have moved to a fully remote or hybrid work environment during the COVID-19 pandemic.

CIS Controls can help identify, develop, validate, promote, and sustain best practice solutions for cyber defence.

By implementing CIS Controls one can get a 360-degree assessment of the gaps in the organisation and take the right steps to address those issues. Typically, the provider would carry out a comprehensive assessment of your organisation’s IT and security infrastructure to judge the resilience towards cyber threats.

WHAT ARE THE STEPS INVOLVED?
Drawing from a practical implementation, one of Paradyn’s customers needed a solution that would provide them with the right framework and set of controls that they could apply across the entire organisation to take a more holistic and proactive approach to managing its complex security and compliance.

Paradyn conducted an online workshop to understand the customer’s current ICT controls, systems, and processes. As a next step. they presented a Business Risk Report that identified specific areas that needed improvement and areas in which where they were performing well. Finally, Paradyn’s security team carefully analysed the gaps in their IT infrastructure and recommended a phased implementation and remediation plan, highlighting areas that needed immediate attention and rectification. To ensure complete accuracy of the results, Paradyn reviewed their customer’s IT infrastructure estate against the 170+ CIS Controls.

BENEFITS OF IMPLEMENTING CIS CONTROLS
From malware, email, and web security to employee awareness training and penetration testing, the controls help to protect organisations against the most widespread cyber-attacks while aiding regulatory compliance with measures such as GDPR.

Paradyn’s deployment helped the customer build a robust framework for cybersecurity and take a more proactive approach towards cyber threats.

The solution has benefits even beyond securing your devices. It helps in informing management objectives, prioritising areas that need help and overall enables better ways of working and efficiency for your employees and stakeholders.

As security challenges evolve, so do the best practices to meet them. CIS Controls is equipped to make recommendations along the way to deal with newer challenges and acts as a guide to benchmark against peers. It can also provide a holistic and best-practice framework to secure existing and planned business assets and resources, no matter how complex.

By using a highly proactive and collaborative approach, Paradyn is helping organisations protect their customers and the way they interact with stakeholders, to successfully implement CIS Controls. If you would like to know more about how we can help you with CIS Controls, click below!

Click here to contact us today to to discuss CIS Controls from Paradyn

Paradyn Boosts Connectivity and Security for Donegal County Council

L-R: Fergal Meehan, Head of Sales and Support – Public Sector at Paradyn, pictured at Lough Eske, Co Donegal, with Sean Dunnion, Project Leader Information Systems at Donegal County Council, at the announcement that Paradyn has delivered a new connectivity and cybersecurity solution for Donegal County Council in a deal worth €80,000.

 

Paradyn Boosts Connectivity and Security for Donegal County Council

Ireland’s only end-to-end IT and communications service provider, today announces that it has delivered a new connectivity and cybersecurity solution for Donegal County Council in a €80,000 deal over 3 years.

Following a competitive tender win, Paradyn designed and implemented a robust and high-speed Wide Area Network (SD-WAN), for the Council to deliver greater connectivity across more than 25 office locations, including Lifford, Letterkenny, Donegal Town, Carndonagh and Dungloe. This will enable improved communication and collaboration for the Council′s 900+ employees.

The next-generation technology will also increase productivity, availability and accessibility of vital applications and services for remote workers. In turn, this will enhance the service that the Council provides to 160,000 citizens in Donegal and create a much better user experience for members of the public.

Furthermore, this project has connected Arranmore Island to the Council’s corporate network for the first time ever, establishing a virtual private network (VPN) from the island’s library access point in the Community Centre to the Council’s corporate network. As a result, this connection will deliver greater accessibility to Council services to the island and its inhabitants.

The new network leverages Cisco Meraki enterprise technology and is delivered via a cloud platform. It will strengthen the Council’s security, mitigating the risk of cyber-attacks and delivering more visibility across the network and devices. The solution does not require configuration backups by third parties and gives more control to the IT team who will be able implement changes to the network remotely. Paradyn is also providing proactive support from its Security Operations Centre.

Donegal County Council will reduce its connectivity costs through the unified solution with an expectation to get a full return on its investment over the next two years.

Sean Dunnion, Project Leader Information Systems, Donegal County Council said: “We wanted to ensure that our staff and the public have high quality and secure access to our services across the entire county. This investment helps us to deliver the highest levels of service to our citizens and allows our staff to be more connected, secure and productive – whether they are working from home or in the office.

“By choosing Paradyn as our IT partners, we are futureproofing our services and reinforcing our alignment with the Donegal Digital Action Plan. We are also ensuring that our systems are both accessible and protected in this age of remote working and communication.”
Fergal Meehan, Head of Sales and Support – Public Sector, Paradyn, said: “We are delighted to have won this tender with Donegal County Council. It is already starting to deliver very positive results and is benefitting the Council, its staff and the wider public.

“As well as enabling greater accessibility and productivity, this unified solution delivers extensive insights across all connected devices and seriously strengthens security. With this implementation, Donegal County Council can now enjoy the benefits of a highly connected communications infrastructure which delivers greater capabilities and a higher return on investment.”

Click here to discuss this project or any other Paradyn projects in more detail.

What are managed services and what can they do for your business?

Daniel O’Neil, Head of Managed Service Provision, Paradyn, explains what managed services are and how managed IT services can benefit companies across a range of business areas.

The fast-moving world of IT has become incredibly complex. Be it new methods of cyber-attacks or evolving cloud technologies, it can be hard for organisations to keep up with the latest technology trends. Managed services have emerged as the most viable solution for the majority of organisations looking to keep their IT environment up-to-date with prevailing best-practices.

Managed services allow you to delegate IT operations to a third-party provider with a specialised IT skillset. The level of support from these managed service providers (MSPs) can vary and is usually agreed upon in a Service Level Agreement (SLA) with the customer paying a monthly fee for receipt of these services.

When effectively executed, a managed service provides you with all the capability of a well-resourced IT department to ensure the smooth functioning of your daily IT operations. This enables you and your internal IT team to focus on strategic projects that can add value to your business and help achieve growth and long-term success.

As more and more business functions become reliant on technology, the pressure grows on IT managers to meet performance, reliability, user-experience and security requirements. Today, more people than ever are working from home or remotely, further adding to the IT teams workload. It’s wise to take stock of your IT assets and network, and critically assess what areas of your environment are underperforming or are at risk. Having assessed your needs, it may be worth exploring how an MSP could help you to resolve issues, address weaknesses or free up time for your IT team.

Here are three key pillars of IT operations that an MSP can assist with:

1. Infrastructure
A well-functioning IT system is built on solid infrastructure. Depending on size, location, customers, industry and objectives, a business’s IT infrastructure needs can vary greatly. The cloud holds many advantages for businesses; building the required infrastructure and managing a customer’s migration to cloud is becoming a common task for MSPs. Likewise, an MSP can help to optimise your on-site servers or build a hybrid environment.
Working with an MSP can help you to decide the best set-up for your needs while mapping out a roadmap to change; helping to get the most out of your existing systems while managing risk and assessing new technologies.

2. Connectivity
Data is the lifeblood of organisations today and it’s vital that businesses get the most out of their internet connection. In order to stay productive, employees require reliable, fast and scalable internet access. This can become especially complex for organisations with multiple office locations and many turn to an MSP’s specialist knowledge in this area for support. Managed wide area networks (WAN) and Software-Defined WANs enable your business to improve bandwidth use and performance for critical applications across multiple sites. Businesses can leverage an MSPs specialist knowledge in areas like this to gain access to a high capacity, secure and cost-effective connectivity solution.

3. Security
It can be difficult to stay abreast of the latest cybersecurity trends with cybercriminals continuing to develop new methods of attack and refine their ways of targeting and exploiting weaknesses. But it has never been more important to ensure you have a holistic view of your business environment with users, customers, devices and data all adequately protected. Apart from the financial damage, security breaches can have a huge impact of your organisation’s reputation.

While there are a huge number of security functions that can be delegated to an MSP, some key areas include managed firewall deployment and services, integrated network security, cloud security, compliance assistance and device management. The world of IT security is constantly changing and given the importance of staying protected, this is a very commonly outsourced function to a specialist cybersecurity services provider.

Tailored managed service
No two companies have the same IT requirements and the first step to engaging with an MSP should always be an in-depth consultation so they can evaluate your environment before determining how they can assist and present you with a proposed agreement tailored for your unique needs.
Paradyn is Ireland’s only end-to-end IT and communications service provider and offers one unified solution to all of your IT needs. Speak with a member of our team today to learn more about our high quality IT service offering and to discuss what we could do for you!

Daniel O’Neill
Head of MSP, Paradyn
Daniel provides the expertise in the development and management of LANs, WANs, corporate storage, Operating Systems, public/private cloud and security systems. Skilled in designing infrastructure and implementing technology to support businesses in core and edge site topography. Adept at translating business needs into technology requirements to enable the achievement of business objectives and in managing all phases of technical & business projects. Cluster and Storage expertise across numerous designs/technologies to enable business productivity achieving high grade SLA’s.

Click here to contact us today to to discuss Managed Services from Paradyn

How to unlock the full power of Microsoft Teams for business

How to unlock the full power of Microsoft Teams for business

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the popularity of Microsoft Teams has skyrocketed. With north of 115 million daily active users, the collaboration platform has emerged as an essential tool for organisations seeking business continuity as their employees work from home. In the absence of face-to-face meetings, Teams allows an employee to make a voice over IP (VoIP) call to any other team member using a PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad or Android powered device.

However, through the free version of Microsoft Teams these VoIP calls are essentially limited to internal communications as the app is not connected to the public switched telephone network. Without an assigned phone number, no one from outside an organisation can directly contact a Microsoft Teams user. This has created a challenge for organisations who can’t easily connect their existing telephone system without additional licencing from Microsoft.

For those organisations that find themselves with both a legacy telephone system which is difficult to access by remote users, and Microsoft Teams used by staff to collaborate internally, a solution that combines these systems is of huge value. We recommend that companies in this position integrate their existing telephone system into Microsoft Teams, to create a single fully featured telephone and collaboration platform.

Benefits of bringing together Microsoft Teams and business telephony system

By integrating your existing telephony system with the Teams app, your users can avail of team collaboration, video conferencing and meetings, unlimited phone calls and anywhere access all through an easy to use interface which they are familiar and comfortable with.

The benefits of this set-up include:

Empower remote working with integrated collaboration and communication from one interface
Keep your phone numbers and calling plans
Quick and easy deployment and setup
No hardware required – Per user subscription
Seamless number porting
Managed Service – deployment, porting, securing your numbers, managing your numbers
Flexible call packages and/or rate cards tailored to your business needs (domestic/international and landline/mobile blends)

Businesses who integrate their existing telephone system with Teams, will maintain all of the call features they are accustomed to, but now can enjoy them through the Microsoft Teams Phone platform. These features include: call forwarding; call hold; call screening; voicemail to email; group call pickup; conference calls up to 250 participants and much more.

Paradyn has researched and developed the very best value options for unlocking the true value of Microsoft Teams for businesses by seamlessly integrating the platform with company telephone systems.

Click here to contact us for your Microsoft Teams requirements.

Viatel acquires Irish Telecom Services

Cillian McCarthy, managing director of Paradyn and Irish Telecom Services, with Viatel chief executive Paul Rellis

 

Paradyn announces the sale of Connectivity Group Company Irish Telecom by The Viatel Group

 

Paradyn today announced that The Viatel Group acquired group company Irish Telecom Services Limited. As Paradyn increasingly focuses on end-to-end IT security and managed services, Viatel emerged as the perfect home for Irish Telecom’s connectivity customers.

Irish Telecom customers include well known enterprise clients such as Folens Publishers, Irish Continental and Booking.com along with leading Credit Unions and public sector organisations.

With offices in Dublin and Cork, Irish Telecom Services, trading as Irish Telecom, has been delivering high speed, high performance networks for over eleven years. In 2018, Irish Telecom Services joined forces with Exigent Networks and Netforce to form Paradyn.

Cillian McCarthy, Managing Director of Paradyn and Irish Telecom Services, commented: “We built Irish Telecom into a leading high speed business connectivity provider for the Irish market based on our ethos of putting customer service and quality of connectivity first. Our customers use us for their mission critical business operations. In Viatel they will find a partner that will continue to deliver the quality and service they love, but also offer them excellent onward connections into the UK and Europe. This will allow us to concentrate on our main business of IT, voice and security managed services.”

Making the announcement, Paul Rellis, CEO of Viatel said “I am delighted to welcome Irish Telecom customers to the Viatel family. We are committed to enabling and supporting their plans and ambitions. Together we can build something special. We trust we will delight them with the service and expertise they can expect as Viatel customers.”

About Paradyn – Pardayn is Ireland’s only end-to-end single source provider of ICT, network and telecoms solutions. Working closely with customers, across a range of industries, a highly experienced team build, monitor, support, secure and maintain all aspect of IT, network and telecoms infrastructure.

About Irish Telecom – Irish Telecom was founded in 2009. With offices in Dublin and Cork, Irish Telecom designs networks delivered on carrier grade licensed radio and resilient fibre to guarantee performance and reliability. Irish Telecom clients include leading Irish businesses and bodies such as Folens Publishers, Irish Continental and Booking.com along with leading Credit Unions and public sector organisations.

About Viatel – Viatel is the leading independent, Irish-owned provider of connectivity, cloud and security solutions. Viatel serves respected Irish companies, multinational corporations and public sector bodies. The group employs over 150 people across Ireland with offices in Dublin, Dundalk and Limerick. A Deloitte Best Managed Company, Viatel operates a national and international network alongside a data centre facility located at their Blanchardstown site. Viatel’s valued customers include Centric Health, CPL, Voxpro, Kingston International and the Departments of Agriculture and of Education.

Click here to contact us today.

How Do You Get The Most Benefits Out of Office 365 For Business?

Daniel O’Neill, Head of Managed Service at Paradyn, provides five tips for businesses to maximise the value of their Microsoft Office 365 licence.

According to Microsoft’s latest results, Office 365 now has 200 million monthly active users. The suite of business products is the most used business process app in the world and its continual growth is thanks to the diverse range of tools it offers commercial users. However, not every business is utilising Office 365 to its full potential. There are many more features outside of just sending emails and creating documents that are readily available to users.

Here are 5 top tips to get maximum benefits out of your Office 365 subscription

1. Take advantage of anywhere, anytime access

With remote working more common place than ever before, Microsoft’s cloud-based products have become more increasingly helpful. Office 365 online is perfect for all business scenarios – whether working from home, in the office, or on the move – employees can seamlessly access the full suite of Office apps and services. By simply signing into Office 365 online from any device, users can access all features including opening, using and sharing company files, data and emails.

2. Collaborate easily with colleagues

The ability to efficiently collaborate with colleagues – no matter where they are located – is especially important during these times. Businesses should ensure they are utilising all of the features and tools that Office 365 makes available for them. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, daily users of Microsoft Teams are up by 70% and it’s easy to see why. Create groups and conversations, schedule meetings, share files seamlessly and work effectively on group projects – all within a structured hub. By using other apps like OneDrive and SharePoint, you can avoid confusion and multiple versions of documents in circulation by making use of co-authorship features with colleagues to ensure changes are tracked in a productive and easily managed way. These advantages of Office 365 have a daily impact on productivity making it a winning business process app.

3. Securely store sensitive data

While providing emerging tools and technology to aid employee collaboration and productivity is important, it’s also imperative that your organisation’s security isn’t compromised. Microsoft weaves in security measures across its product suite to help safeguard data, devices, apps and users. As the platform is cloud based, many of these features will be updated automatically. However, it’s important to take time to review your security settings and enable features such as multi-factor authentication, identity and access management, and endpoint protection to improve security on remote devices.

4.Analyse business performance

Across our personal and professional lives, we are producing more data than ever before. With the right tools and capability to analyse large volumes of data, businesses can make far more informed decisions. Microsoft Power BI and Workplace Analytics are examples of powerful analytic tools available to Office 365 users. These applications allow for a data-driven culture that enable businesses to see the bigger picture, monitor and track performance over time, and have more confidence in their decision making. Not only does this benefit end users as well as stakeholders it can actually save businesses and organisations money.

5. Create a home for everything important

One of the biggest benefits of Office 365 is its ability to help improve productivity through clever and efficient applications. OneNote is an excellent organisational tool that helps you to keep pace in a world of information overload. Employees can take notes, build lists, access content from anywhere at any time, seamlessly integrate notes with other application and share information easily with co-workers. 74% of Companies Plan to Permanently Shift to More Remote Work Post COVID-19, so the features and advantages of Office 365 as an organisational and project management tool are essential.

From collaboration to security to analytics and organisation, Office 365 allows you to do more, from anywhere securely, in less time. We’ve only touched on some of the hidden and less well-known features which all add up to significant gains in user experience, productivity and performance. A dedicated technology partner can help implement these tools, onboard employees and manage continued software innovations to help you to maximise the value of your Microsoft 365 licence. Contact Paradyn today to learn more about what we can do to help.

Daniel O’Neill
Head of MSP, Paradyn
Daniel provides the expertise in the development and management of LANs, WANs, corporate storage, Operating Systems, public/private cloud and security systems. Skilled in designing infrastructure and implementing technology to support businesses in core and edge site topography. Adept at translating business needs into technology requirements to enable the achievement of business objectives and in managing all phases of technical & business projects. Cluster and Storage expertise across numerous designs/technologies to enable business productivity achieving high grade SLA’s.