VelocIT Launches Virtual Office, Helps Companies Adapt During Pandemic and Beyond

Technology solution empowers remote teams to work more efficiently

CRANBURY TOWNSHIP, NJ (May 21, 2020) – The COVID-19 pandemic has introduced a new way of working for many teams.  Teams have adapted to working remotely with higher levels of efficiency than expected. As companies across the country adjust to the new normal, VelocIT Virtual Office, a new product from VelocIT, will give business leaders the freedom to quickly enable their mobile workforce with equipment, security, the latest software, and 24/7 IT Support that’s a click or phone call away.

With VelocIT Virtual Office, companies that were spending thousands of dollars in physical office space will now have the option to save money on rent, mortgage, and IT infrastructure by enabling their teams to work from anywhere while maintaining security and efficiency.

“Many companies have realized that their team is just as, if not more, productive working from home. For most of these companies, reducing or eliminating their square footage will save them money, which they can reinvest into their business,” said Darek Hahn, President and CEO of VelocIT. “We’ve taken best in class tools and combined them into VelocIT Virtual Office. It is a one-stop, fully supported, solution for companies that are looking to “unplug” from the traditional office setting.”

Virtual Office is a fully virtual technology solution that gives teams the ability to work from anywhere with no hardware beyond their end-user devices. The basic product bundle includes onboarding, help desk support, email management & security, Microsoft 365 for email, secure email & endpoint backup, antivirus, endpoint encryption, content management, patch management.  Additional services for remote users include, corporate home firewall to separate work from home traffic, Virtual Desktop & Server solutions, extended service hours, virtual phone services.  For those that need to keep a small office place for storage, meetings or touchdown places for employees can also add office network management. For any hardware needed VelocIT can work with a ‘Bring Your Own Device’ option or can setup lease or rent options for companies that do not want to own any hardware.

To learn more about Virtual Office, visit the VelocIT website at velocitmsp.com.

About VelocIT

VelocIT’s unique managed service delivery model builds trust. Our goal is to help you grow your business through IT Leadership. From infrastructure to end-user support, VelocIT partners with you to meet the unique technology needs specific to your business. Our integrated approach to Information Technology Support consistently reduces operational costs while increasing end-user satisfaction for our partners.

Microsoft Teams VS. Zoom

Read our latest White Paper on this Subject.

Both platforms have their unique advantages and disadvantages, and from our experiences and research we’ve determined for most of our clients it actually makes sense to use both.  

In the midst of a shutdown unlike anything we have seen before, video conferencing sites have exploded in popularity.

In the vertical of video conferencing platforms two have distanced themselves from the rest:  Microsoft Teams and Zoom.  It would be remiss not to mention Skype, Google Hangouts, Facetime or OoVoo – all of which are or were at one time popular video chatting services.  In terms of current applications within an American professional organization it is typically a coin flip between Microsoft Teams and Zoom, whose total users jumped from 10 million in December 2019 to 200 million in March 2020.

The two platforms have been thrust into “essential” level status as tools for workplaces and many business leaders aren’t entirely familiar with the options available.

Microsoft Teams comes included with MS Office 365 and integrates quite well within the system, making Teams a suitable option for in-office use and communication.  Microsoft Teams is optimized for secure, internal collaborations.  Calls with Teams can have up to 20 users on at once.  

Zoom, on the other hand, is more of a jack-of-all-trades video conferencing tool that can be used for both internal communication and external personal use.  It can handle up to 49 users on a single call as well as breakout rooms for users to split into smaller groups.  Zoom offers a free service with up to 100 participants however it is limited to 40 minutes per call.  For unlimited calls and webinars the pricing increases starting at $14.99 per host per month.

Zoom made headlines recently due to concerns of security.  Some Zoom encryption keys were generated in China which caused concerns for many users as to who had access to their data.

Another concern with Zoom was the prevalence of so-called “Zoombombers” entering private video conferences at will.  Zoom does in fact have ways to prevent that exact kind of malicious activity and always has; however the default privacy settings on Zoom are set to open instead of closed.  These can be adjusted to give meeting hosts the ability to set up passwords for meetings and review new guests in a waiting room before they are allowed on the call.   Zoom addressed these issues with software updates in April.  We recommend checking your settings in Zoom to make sure that the security measures are up to your company’s standards.  

A reason many organizations use Teams could be out of convenience, as the service comes free along with MS Office 365 and integrates smoothly into company calendars and email accounts which makes scheduling and sharing files a breeze.  Like Zoom, there are waiting rooms and passwords to keep out unwanted guests and keep your data safe.

Companies have unique challenges and needs so there is no blanket answer to which service is better.  If your company is already using MS 365 then you already have Teams to integrate into the rest of the Microsoft apps.  If you are looking to use video conferencing outside of work or are curious to see how Zoom performs then download the free version and give it a try.  At VelocIT we prefer to remain agnostic in regard to our video conferencing tools as our clients use several different platforms.  It’s very commonplace for companies to use Teams internally and Zoom for communicating with clients and vendors.   For the majority of our clients it does make sense to use both to their advantages as the two services compliment each other quite well.

Don’t forget to follow the VelocIT for more updates and other relevant tech laws.

How the EARN IT Act is Threatening End to End Encryption

In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, anything that doesn’t have much to do with the virus isn’t making news. One such thing is the introduction of the EARN IT act.

So what exactly is the EARN IT act, and why is it such a threat to end-to-end encryption? Let’s take a look.

Before we get any further, let’s make sure we all understand end to end encryption.  End to end encryption is a way of protecting information from 3rd parties.  Simply put, end to end encryption scrambles data from one source or “end” and does not decrypt the message until it reaches the other end.  This protects companies and their data from malicious activity, but it also allows cybercriminals to store and share illegal files and data freely.  That is where the debate on end to end encryption begins, and why the EARN IT act has been proposed.

What is the EARN IT Act?

The Eliminating Abusive and Rampant Neglect of Interactive Technologies Act, or EARN IT Act, is a bill designed to require tech businesses to take child sexual exploitation with more seriousness. Essentially, the act would create more incentives for businesses to earn liability protection for law violations that relate to online child sexual abuse material or CSAM. According to one of the legislators that introduced the bill, member Dianne Feinstein, companies “must do more to combat this growing problem on their online platforms. Our bill would allow individuals to sue tech companies that don’t take proper steps to prevent online child exploitation, and it’s an important step to protect the most vulnerable among us.”

So what bad could possibly come from this act? Unfortunately, many believe the bill is a thinly-veiled attempt to disrupt end-to-end encryption.

Why is the EARN IT Act Such a Threat?

The EARN IT Act New Jersey bill is a noble cause, but tech experts are wary that the bill could violate free speech and damage security protections on the internet.

The bill itself could be seen as an attempt to chip away at end-to-end encryption by targeting Section 230. Section 230 is a vital part of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, an act that protects free speech by giving tech leaders and companies immunity from liabilities that may be associated with content that is posted on their respective platforms.

The Justice Department has been saying for quite a while that end-to-end encryption presents a roadblock for investigators that need to gather evidence to catch internet criminals. With no compromise in sight, the EARN IT Act seems to be a way to force tech companies to take more responsibility for what is posted on their platforms. Section 230 essentially states that liability falls on individual users, rather than the owner of the platform that user content is posted on. The bill will make it possible to sue tech companies that aren’t taking more steps to prevent child exploitation– which could lead to a widespread end to end-to-end encryption so that tech platforms can protect themselves legally.

What do you think of the EARN IT Act? Do you believe it will help fight online child exploitation or break down end-to-end encryption and internet privacy?

Don’t forget to follow the VelocIT for more updates on the Earn It Act and other relevant tech laws.
Photo source: Pixabay

VelocIT Implements Online Chat and SMS Texting

VelocIT has adopted online “texting” and SMS texting to enhance their client communications

CRANBURY, NEW JERSEY — VelocIT, a New Jersey-based managed service provider and technology partner, announced today new communication methods for their customers.  Not only can customers use the traditional methods of picking up the phone or emailing to contact them for support, VelocIT has implemented Online Chat and SMS Texting to reach a live agent. Channels like online “texting” and SMS texting are great options to communicate with customers making it easier to obtain support.  There are 3.5 billion phones world wide, 96% of Americans currently own a cellphone of some kind and 81% text regularly.  This makes it an excellent option for better communicating with VelocIT clients.

“Obtaining IT support should be simple and quick.  This capability makes it simple and quick.” says Glenn Kupsch, Chief Operating Officer of VelocIT.

Over the course of the next several weeks, VelocIT will be communicating this new communication platform to their existing customers.

Mike Bucciero Promoted to Vice President of Client Services

CRANBURY, NEW JERSEY — VelocIT, a New Jersey-based managed service provider and technology partner, announced the promotion of senior team member, Mike Bucciero, to VP of Client Services. Bucciero joined the company more than 20 years ago as an intern and is excited to take on a new role and get back to more client-facing responsibilities. 

Bucciero started with the company on the ground floor when he joined as an  intern. Through the years he has moved into new roles within the company to  challenge him and force him to grow. As a seasoned professional and veteran employee, Bucciero has reached a level of success and a step on the corporate ladder that he feels will invite him to use his skills to help lead a team of professionals in reaching their potential. 

“I have been at this company for so long because I believe in our team and what we do,” commented Bucciero when asked about his promotion. “I am very excited to get back to playing a more advisory role and continue helping our clients make the best possible decisions when it comes to leveraging technology.”

In his new role, Bucciero will be a more client-facing asset, offering his skills and
expertise to guide clients and help them understand their technology integration
options.

CEO Darek Hahn spoke highly of Bucciero and his ongoing contributions to the
company: “We appreciate Mike’s long-term commitment to the company and all he has given us over the years. He is no stranger to putting in the hard work. And, we truly appreciate his growth and ability to lead internally and work directly with clients.” 

ABOUT VELOCIT

VelocIT’s unique managed service delivery model builds trust. Our goal is to help you grow your business through IT Leadership. From infrastructure to end-user support, VelocIT partners with you to meet the unique technology needs specific to your business. Our integrated approach to Information Technology Support consistently reduces operational costs while increasing end-user satisfaction for our partners.

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