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Email Data – Things SMB Leaders Should Know About IT – Blog Series #1

Series: What Small and Mid-Sized Business Leaders Need to Know About Their Company’s IT – Email Data

There is one simple concept that law students learn in their first weeks of criminal law class: Ignorance of the law is no excuse. The same goes for IT and Business Leaders. Gone are the days where you can say, “I’m an Executive. I don’t need to know about IT.” We expect business leaders to be stewards of data just as they are with inventory, accounting, bank accounts, etc. The foundation of being a good steward of a company’s data is knowledge about the company’s IT. Even if you have the best IT guy, you should still have some basic knowledge about your company’s data and IT systems. 

Unfortunately, there are very few places a business leader can go to learn the fundamentals of IT. Business leaders are often not the most technical person in their company which means they must trust the advice, knowledge, and execution of their technical employees or IT service providers. 

So, we’ve created this guide for Business Leaders in Small and Medium Businesses (SMB’s). Our goal is to give you, the business leader, the ability to “trust but verify” the technology, your internal staff, and their data security.

Ask yourself: Where is your company data and who owns it?

Data comes in a variety of flavors, and it’s usually in a multitude of places.  In this series, we will talk about some different kinds of data that your company may own or use.

Data example #1: E-Mail

Why EMAIL matters: Email is considered the lifeblood of business communication and it’s also the most likely place for a malicious attack on your business to originate. Phishing attacks, accidental deletions, hackers, etc.

What you must know:

Where is your company email hosted?

Laymen’s terminology:

“Hosted” the place (aka server) where email is stored.

Possible answers:

GoDaddy, Microsoft Office 365, GSuite, your company’s exchange server, some guy’s computer in a basement somewhere, a server in a data center, etc.

Business Continuity Concerns:

If your email goes down, or more specifically if your email server goes down, how fast could it be resurrected?

Trust but Verify:

If your email is anywhere other than Microsoft’s Office 365 Services or Google’s G-Suite for Business, you really need to know why. Is your host secure? There also needs to be an Email Security program over top of your chosen host. Do you have a security product like Barracuda ESS in place?

Barracuda ESS is part of Auxiom’s Best Practice Toolset for all our Managed Service Clients

What you must know:

  1. Who has the ability or rights to manage your company email? Hint: There should be more than one person who has access to manage this.

  2. Who can move, add, change, or delete emails and email users from your company email systems?

Possible answers:

You, your person, a third-party Managed Services Company

Business Continuity Concerns:

What would happen if the person who managed your email disappeared tomorrow?  Or what if that person went rogue?

Trust but verify:

You need to make sure that you or someone else in your organization can access your email management system in the case of your employee leaving.

In the event of losing data contained in emails, business can be lost. In the event of data contained in emails being leaked, reputational risk is a major concern.

Email data

Stay tuned for our next blog post about the data from your website.

Are you tired of having recurring IT issues? Do you want to have more time to focus on your “real” job instead of having to be your company IT guy? Do you have internal IT but would like to take some of the weight off of them so they can work on things that really matter to you? Managed IT Services can get you there. Call Auxiom today!


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