FreeClix Accredited to Buy Local Norfolk Network

We are delighted to announce we are now a member of Buy Local Norfolk. Buy Local Norfolk is a not-for-profit social enterprise that aims to raise the profile of businesses truly local to Norfolk. All Buy Local Norfolk members have proven their commitment to supporting the local economy.

Buy Local Norfolk has developed a unique accreditation process which only businesses genuinely local to Norfolk can meet. To be accepted into the scheme, a business has to show that it is genuinely local, independent and based in Norfolk.

For the growing number of businesses and consumers to whom buying local products and services is important Buy Local Norfolk has a member’s directory listing businesses truly local to Norfolk.

FreeClix achieves ISO 9001:2008 certification demonstrating commitment to continuous service improvement

In another important milestone FreeClix is proud to announce its achievement of ISO 9001:2008 certification following independent and external audits by Alcumus ISOQAR.

FreeClix’s investment during 2015 in resources and tools has underpinned the implementation of a robust quality management system governing all its business processes and operations. The team have worked since July 2015 to engage in continuous improvement on those processes and obtain training to increase customer satisfaction.

“FreeClix is all about quality products and services. Obtaining our ISO 9001:2008 certification validates our ability to continually improve our services and assure that customers continue to receive the very best. At the start of the process we set out to bring genuine value to our customers rather than focusing on the certification as a tick-box exercise. We’re particularly proud of the praise given to us by the lead auditor for our creation of a highly relevant quality management system which was produced completely in house without use of an external consultant.” – Managing Director, Peter Freeman.

ISO 9001:2008 is a quality management standard that is designed to help organisations improve business processes and provides a structure and tools for organizations who want to ensure that their products and services consistently meet customers’ expectations and continually improve.

The key principles of the ISO 9001:2008 standard include; customer focus, leadership, involvement of people, process approach to management, continual improvement, decision making and supplier relationships

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Certificate Number: 14096
ISO 9001: 2008

FreeClix Selected for New Public Sector Supplier Framework

FreeClix Selected for New Public Sector Supplier Framework

FreeClix Limited has been awarded a place on the Government’s new Digital Outcome and Specialists Framework as a supplier to the UK Public Sector.

The agreement, which is available from the middle of April 2016, provides a simple, clear and fast service for public sector organisations looking to find and buy specialist digital services.

FreeClix passed the rigorous supplier selection process of the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) by demonstrating its methodology met the Government Service Design Manual and the Digital by Default Service Standard for new or redesigned digital services.

FreeClix is well placed to help public sector organisations in its awarded Digital Specialist category of Cyber Security Specialist. It will offer IT consultancy services enabling Public Sector Organisations ensure they are Cyber Secure.

Managing Director Pete Freeman said “We’re proud to be one of the few Norfolk based organisations to have been awarded a place under this new framework and think it’s fantastic the government are giving businesses like FreeClix the opportunity to provide cyber security expertise to the public sector.”

“We’ve got great technical talent in the business and we always work tremendously hard to deliver innovative and flexible solutions for our customers diverse needs. We’re really excited about how we can use our cyber security experience and skills to benefit buyers in the Digital Marketplace.”

The Digital Marketplace is where central government, local authorities, devolved administrations, arm’s length bodies and wider public sector bodies can commission suppliers to work on digital projects via the Digital Services framework (DSf). It enables buyers to either contract with suppliers for individual roles to join their existing digital teams, or create entire digital teams to work on a project.

FreeClix offers a range of cyber security products and services including penetration testing and consultancy to both private and public sector organisations across the UK.

FreeClix Exhibit at Norfolk Chamber Business Breakfast

FreeClix Exhibit at Norfolk Chamber Business Breakfast

FreeClix were delighted to be an exhibitor at the recent Norfolk Chamber of Commerce Cyber Smart Business Breakfast. Excellent talks were given by both Stuart Sullivan of SGS Legal and Lynsey Sweales of SocialB Ltd with both giving some real insight into the threats of cyber-attacks.

With the focus of the morning being on ways to keep your business safe from Cyber-threats we took the opportunity to launch our new infographic highlighting our four stage security review. The review enables us to examine not only your business’ physical infrastructure but also any software and policies that may put your business at risk of a cyber-attack. If you haven’t had a chance to see our new infographic yet, here it is!

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The morning, which was presented by Rachele Kelsall of Hugh J Boswell was a great success and we had a great time both exhibiting alongside The History of Advertising Trust & Norfolk County Council and listening to the guest speakers. We had the pleasure of meeting some really great people from a wide variety of businesses as well as enjoying a lovely breakfast! Thanks go to Norfolk Chamber of Commerce for having us along.

Focus On: Hosted Acronis Backup Cloud

Focus On: Hosted Acronis Backup Cloud

Ensuring our customers always have the right product to suit their business is one of our top priorities. Earlier this month we identified a customer which had an aged backup solution which was unreliable, out of date and lacking in security; it was failing once a week. As a result of these frequent failures manual intervention was required to get the software back up and running causing increased support costs and lost time to their business.

By offering the Hosted Acronis Backup Cloud customers can enjoy:

  • A cloud managed service
  • Fully flexible storage to suit your needs
  • Restoration to any PC
  • Fully secure 2048-bit encryption
  • Prices start from as little as £5.00p/m +VAT and set up time can be less than an hour

Do you want to know more about our hosted backup solutions?

Call 01603 703340 or email us at sales@freeclix.com so we can discuss your needs.

Telecoms Fraud

We have recently been made aware of a number scams taking place involving 070 numbers; These are Non-geographic numbers (not mobile) that are charged at higher rates.

The known scams include prospective customers asking to be called back on 070 numbers, this can sometimes be via email where they suggest they are interested in your products and services.

Known target types include but are not restricted to: Hotels, Car dealerships, Telecommunication suppliers and Letting and Estate Agents.

During the calls the scammers try to keep you on the phone as long as possible or request other colleagues to be added into a conference call, then hanging up whilst keeping everyone else on the line. This can then result in very long calls and charges.

The regulator for 070 numbers has been making attempts to close down the numbers used in recent suspected scams, but the threat remains that new numbers could be used.

Please remain vigilant of any call back requests which use an 070 number and if you’re using a conference call ensure all parties have disconnected before hanging up yourselves.

We love ESET’s Easy-to-Use FREE scanner

If you’re looking for a quick, easy and most importantly FREE way to detect and remove malware on your PC then look no further.

ESET are offering a powerful and user-friendly tool that uses the same ThreatSense® scanning technology and signatures as ESET Smart Security and ESET NOD32 Antivirus – just by using your web browser.

Key features of the online scanner include:

Enhanced Browser Support – Running scans in your favorite browser, such as Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Netscape, and more.

Destination Scanning – Select specific files or folders for quick scanning of suspicious objects.

Anti-Stealth Technology – Detect and clean hidden threats automatically from your system with ESET’s anti-rootkit technology, built on a key component of ESET’s Smart Security and ESET NOD32 Antivirus programs.

Quarantine – Delete or quarantine infected files into a special folder, where they no longer pose a threat to your system. Quarantined files can also be restored.

Want to know if your computer is clean and check the files on your PC?  go to http://www.eset.com/int/online-scanner-popup/

Want to to safeguard endpoints, servers, or your company mobile fleet? Talk to FreeClix to see how we use Eset to keep your company data a safe distance from from threats.

What’s new in Office 365?

If you think you have a good handle on what’s available in the Cloud, think again.  The Cloud that you investigated 12 months or 6 months ago might now have service offerings that you’re not aware of. Nothing demonstrates this increased pace of technology change as well as Office 365 does. So let’s look at some of the new Office 365 features that have been introduced in the last 12 months. Because it’s a whole lot more than just hosted Exchange and SharePoint.

Delve – Search on steroids. Traditionally if you wanted to find some information, you’d go to the place where that kind of data was kept and use that product’s search function (eg within Outlook or File Explorer). Delve sits instead an Office 365 tenant and analyses all of the data you have access to in one search pane. Information is beautifully presented, whether it was in your mail file, a shared mailbox you have access to or a SharePoint document library. This breaks information out of silos and is especially handy for highlighting information provided by colleagues and stored in places you may not have thought to look (as long as you have access).

Sway – A new way to tell your story. Also available as a standalone product, Sway is now integrated into Office 365, appearing in the app picker. Labelled a ‘digital storytelling app’, some have wondered if this will bring an end to death by PowerPoint. Sadly, it lacks the ‘clicker’ integration for delivering a live presentation. What does shine is the automated information layouts that bring beautiful ‘readability’ without you needing to be a website developer.

Power BI – Display & query your data like never before. OK so this one’s a little older than 12 months and is also available as a standalone product. The Office 365 power comes from using this powerful tool to display stunning representations of your data real-time inside your SharePoint Online portal. Natural language query lets you filter and redisplay that data.

Office 365 Groups – Groups, but not as you know them. This is truly an Office 365 innovation, not available anywhere else. They’re not security groups and they aren’t mailing groups. Office 365 Groups bring a collection of team resources to one place for you to access (emails, shared calendar, shared documents etc.) The most brilliant part is that a new person to the ‘team’ (Group) gets access to all of the historical data including previous emails sent amongst the group. This works well for team members that don’t all work in the same office, but is only available to users within your Office 365 tenant.

Office 365 Planner – Team task management. This is the newest baby, not available in even First Release tenants until next quarter. Office 365 Planner is what you get if Project and Pinterest had a baby. It’s not designed for complicated projects, but it provides a great team space for task creation, allocation and updates.

Mobile Device Management – BYOD fans are going to love this. While Mobile Device Management has been an Enterprise offering in the past, now an Office 365 subscriber can take advantage of some of these capabilities. Under the hood it will look strangely like Windows Intune (because it is). Bringing it to Office 365 makes it affordable for more organisations, but the killer feature is the ability to selectively wipe enrolled devices.  So when staff have an Office 365 license on their phone, not only can you enforce passcodes if you wish but you can delete all synced files and emails if their phone is lost .. without wiping out the family photos in their camera roll.

Additional administration and protection features. Office 365 now lets administrators configure self service password reset for users who have a secondary validation method (eg a mobile number or alternative email address). Custom branding is also available, to make people feel like they are logging onto one of the company’s systems. And data loss prevention has now extended beyond just email and is available in SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business, suggesting or blocking information from being shared outside of your organization.

Has this changed your perception of Office 365?

Can you see a use for any of the new features within your own organization?

If the answer is yes then get in touch now. As a Microsoft Partner FreeClix can offer a wide variety of Office 365 packages, from the basic Office 365 Business to the more advanced Office 365 Enterprise packages.

 

St Modwen Properties Case Study

FreeClix were contracted to replace the legacy unmanaged data network spanning the four Technology Park buildings.  FreeClix led on the design and implementation of a new combined Data and Voice network capable of gigabit speeds to the network edge with 10 gigabit core switching.

The project mandate stipulated that the Technology Park rents office space to over sixty small businesses (referred to as tenants from now).  To identify any complex network configurations and extended change windows of these tenants, FreeClix issued each tenant with a digital ‘SurveyMonkey’ questionnaire and collated their responses into quality controlled work packages on the project plan.  The mandate also specified that guest WiFi network was required.  FreeClix provided the customer with a detailed proposal covering legally compliant social WiFi through our preferred supplier.

At the project scoping and planning stage FreeClix discovered that the existing ISP would need to allocate a different Internet address subnet for the new network.  To mitigate this risk, FreeClix designed and implemented the second network alongside the existing one.  This ensured that the small businesses were able to continue their BAU activities while the new network was physically installed and tested.  This resulted in two active data networks where tenants were able to perform acceptance testing in good time prior to the changeover date.

FreeClix proposed that the Technology Park should be provided with a resilient primary and secondary Internet link through one of our carriers to replace the existing single point of failure at the project scoping and planning stage.  However, the customer chose not to proceed with this work due to internal affairs.

As per the FreeClix Quality statement, we ensured that an excellent working relationship with all parties was cemented through unambiguous, open communication.  This greatly assisted with managing the existing Voice provider’s work package to migrate the onsite IP telephony system onto the new network.  This supplier was also subcontracted to replace the campus’s network cabling.  We used our positive relationship with them to ensure that only the structured cabling that failed testing was replaced.  This resulted in a significant cost saving for the customer and reduced the project’s timescale.

To satisfy the varied IT needs of the tenants identified through our questionnaire, FreeClix installed a secure wall mounted network cabinet containing a Gigabit capable PoE access switch (uplinked to the Park’s new ten Gigabit core switch infrastructure) and patch panel in each office space during the project’s implementation.  We also used the tenants’ information to scope and configure the Technology Park’s new firewall and bandwidth management hardware to allow tenants choice in their network implementation.  FreeClix provided tenants with the ability to access the Internet securely with or without their own firewall.  We identified those tenants with their internal IT companies and planned in site visits and conference calls to ensure their transition to the new network was painless.

FreeClix provided inter-building network links using full duplex gigabit Microwave links.  We used a single brand and model that we have successfully implemented at many other sites including our own core network in Norwich.  This communications medium provides a very cost effective, high bandwidth solution that does not require expensive maintenance or civil engineering works to install.

The new data network utilised a single brand of enterprise switch hardware that FreeClix are very familiar with and have used in other installations and our own network for over 15 years.  This maximised device compatibility and so the implementation activities were quick to complete and test.  This also allowed preconfigured redundant equipment to be held onsite that can be quickly installed in the event of physical hardware failure.

Ongoing relationships with tenants and the customer are very good due to our proactive support driven by the industry standard network monitoring platform that we installed and configured at the Technology Park, our knowledge of the network technologies at the site, remote management and FreeClix’s desire to engage with the tenants to provide excellent customer service.