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Off the hook: 6 Tips to avoid Phishing scams

Off the hook: 6 Tips to avoid Phishing scams

It has come to our attention that many of our customers have seen an increased number of phishing campaigns over the last few weeks and it has become clear that there is some concern regarding the best way to deal with these emails. As an IT organisation ourselves, we know for a fact that security issues come in many different forms and it just so happens to be the case that phishing has the potential to be a very devastating variation of a cyber-attack. In the opening months of 2018, extremely convincing phishing campaigns have been catching vulnerable business off guard so we thought it would be prudent to provide some insight and practical advice when it comes to spotting and overcoming these manipulative messages.

 

1: Train your staff to know what to look for

Training your staff to be aware and vigilant of all attachments and links from unsolicited emails can be a great way to start preventing the possibilities of a potential phishing attack. All emails with attachments should be treated with caution, even those from friends, family and colleagues. Make sure you can spot common aspects of phishing emails, for example very unspecific information such as “take a look at this”. Phrases like this should raise concern, but whether they are hostile or not can be easily verified by replying to the email asking if the assumed contact actually sent the email. When you respond to these emails, the real person will receive the question and the virus or phishing attempt won’t receive your response. If the person says they didn’t send the email – good job – you just mitigated a potential dangerous attack.

 

2: Deceptive URLs and domain names

It is imperative that all links in emails or documents, recognised or not, are checked and verified. This is very easy to do. By hovering over links, you are able to identify the actual site the link will take you to, and if it looks suspicious simply do not click it. In addition to this, if a link takes you to a site asking for a username and password be wary. Check the address is correct and know that people might use very similar (misspelled) variations to fool their victims. Another common URL trick is to hide the address bar so you can not verify if you are on the wrong page.

 

3: The message contains poor spelling and grammar

Large organisations usually review every email, letter and notification for spelling, grammar and legality issues amongst a wide variety of other things. If an email contains poor grammar or any spelling mistakes, it’s likely that it’s illegitimate.

 

4: The email makes offers that sound too good to be true

If you get an email offering technology for extremely low prices (for example at a 90% discount) then you know it’s a scam. These emails usually tell the recipient that there is a “deal for a limited time” and often catch people out on their impulses for gratification. It’s highly likely they just want to steal your card details.

 

5: Asking for money to cover costs

Over the last few weeks, a wide number of phishing emails asking for payments to cover costs have been plaguing businesses all over the UK. The senders of these emails usually mimic an email address of a colleague (such as your boss) and will send you an email asking you to make the payment. These emails usually look extremely convincing and will base their attachment design off common invoices from banks, service providers and websites. The senders of these emails gamble on you not questioning the request of your superiors, as they pretend to be a trusted colleague, and therefore are one of the most manipulative.

 

6: The message is random and uninitiated

Phishing attacks often leech off of the popularity of services such as the lottery or other competitions to steal personal information. An example of an uninitiated attack would be receiving a message in an email claiming that you have won a competition even though you never entered one. These attacks can be successful because many people do enter competitions and draws such as the lottery, so there is a high chance the recipient can be fooled.

 

If you have any concerns or questions don’t hesitate to call us on 01189 186822 or contact us by email on hello@nouveau.co.uk.

Microsoft Gold Certification

Microsoft Gold Certification

We are delighted that Nouveau Solutions has been awarded the Small and Midmarket Cloud Solutions competency at the Gold level for Office 365.

This accreditation allows Nouveau to join an elite group of partners who are awarded a Microsoft Gold competency.  Gold partners must demonstrate proven expertise in delivering quality solutions in a specialised area and meet certain criteria including performance metrics, pass technical competency exams and provide a number of customer references.

“We are delighted that we have earned our Small and Midmarket Cloud Solutions competency.  Many of our customers are looking to move to a hosted platform and we have helped to transition thousands of users to Office 365.

The addition of this accreditation further strengthens our partnership with Microsoft and demonstrates our capability to deliver solutions and services that our customers can rely upon.  The flexibility and support we can offer via our Cloud Solutions Provider platform provides prospective customers with complete peace of mind that Nouveau are the right partner.”  Berni Maguire, Head of Marketing

To support our plans to expand our Cloud solutions and services we are looking to extend our team with more Azure and Office 365 specialists – send your Curriculum Vitae to hr@nouveau.co.uk if you would like to be considered.

To learn more about our Cloud solutions and services go to: https://www.nouveau.co.uk/solutions/cloud-managed-services/

Getting to know Ian Johnson

Getting to know Ian Johnson

Ian Johnson, Business Development Manager

1: What attracted you to Nouveau Solutions Ltd?

What initially interested me in Nouveau was the fact that it was an established business, management owned and funded that was just celebrating its 25 years.  My last employer whom I’d worked for 12 years had been through a number of acquisitions which is quite an unsettling experience, so the fact that Nouveau had the same management team in place who founded the company provided me with the comfort and stability that I was looking for.

Having worked with Berni (Head of Marketing) in my last company, she kindly provided the introduction to the rest of the Management Team to explore the company and the opportunities potentially available to me.

What became very apparent during my initial informal discussions with Leigh (Sales Manager) and Andy (Managing Director) was that there was a clear mutual understanding of the business and the direction/growth they desired and they were looking for individuals who were forward thinking and creative who’d bring ideas/suggestions to the management team to improve the business.

 

2: How’s it going so far?

You’d have to ask Andy and Leigh ?

I’m happy with the way I’ve integrated into the company.  I feel like I’ve already been here for years, which is a huge compliment to everyone in the company.

 

3: What do you enjoy about being a Business Development Manager?

For me it’s all about on-boarding new clients… from seeking out new clients, opening dialogue, understanding their business and becoming a trusted advisor is a process I find very rewarding.

 

4: What do you see as being the biggest IT challenge for organisations?

I think the biggest challenge currently facing many small to medium sized businesses is the lack of financial IT budget to support IT Managers.

IT is so fast moving and is a fundamental part of any company helping with customer experience, productivity, growth and how an organisation can differentiate themselves. Most IT Managers I speak to, have the best intentions and want to build/provide systems that enable and work for the business, however there seems to be a view that IT is a cost outlay rather than an investment.

 

5: If you weren’t in Sales, what other role could you see yourself doing?

I think I would still be in IT, but maybe within a role in Vendor Management or Engineering.  I like working within the IT industry as it’s so fast paced and constantly evolving which keeps me on my toes to constantly refresh my understanding and keep abreast of new trends which I can share with customers and colleagues. As a people person I enjoy building relationships with my clients, suppliers and colleagues and hopefully to be viewed as a trust advisor and expert.

 

6: If you could have 4 famous dinner guests, who would they be, past or present?

David Attenborough: HERO! No more to be said than that.  You only need to look at the impact he made on the recent Planet II by demonstrating the damage that plastic materials is causing to marine life!

Marilyn Monroe: Aside from the obvious! I believe her amazing stories about the people she met during a game-changing part of history (JFK, Elvis, Rat Pack and many more) would be thoroughly entertaining.

Dwight D Eisenhower: No dinner party would be complete without some discussion around politics.  He would provide some amazing insight from his days as the leader of WWII Allied Forces and US President!

Steve Tyler: One of my musical heroes who has been in the industry for over 45 years, so I’m sure we’d be able to persuade him to get his guitar out at some point and have a great Jam.

 

7: What technology device could you not live without?

My Smartphone, and it has to be Apple… I have adopted the full Apple suite – yes, I’m an iSheep!

 

8: How do you unwind at the end of a day?

Listen to music and building Lego (with my 5 year old son) ?  

 

 

If you want get in touch with Ian, don’t hesitate to contact him at:

(e) ian.johnson@nouveau.co.uk

(t) 01189 186822

or visit his LinkedIn here.

 

Nouveau Solutions Celebrate 25th Anniversary with the Launch of a New Website

Nouveau Solutions Celebrate 25th Anniversary with the Launch of a New Website

As we entered our 25th year in business, we believed it was an opportunity for us to think about how the industry has changed significantly since Nouveau Solutions was founded. The IT industry is fast-paced and our passion for it drives us to ensure that we constantly evolve our business in response to industry trends and customer demands.

With this in mind, we are delighted to announce the launch of our redesigned website! We felt that the previous website did not accurately portray the breadth of IT solutions that we offer, and feel confident that the new website provides a more accurate picture of the IT services we provide for our customers.

The new website has been created with users at the front and centre of our thinking, and during our scoping process for the new website, we requested feedback from our customers to ensure the site would meet their needs and requirements when searching for IT services. We are committed to providing IT managed services around two key objectives, and this has been the focus of our new website:

• Create a user experience that is meaningful and enabling;
• Design a service aligned to your business goals and objectives.

We wanted to help users find the information they need quicker, making the process of implementing IT solutions as easy as possible. Throughout our 25 years of operation we have always strived to deliver to organisations a high standard of service, and to be at the forefront of innovation within the IT sector. Our new website has enabled us to showcase our expertise and show how we’ve kept up to date with industry changes, particularly around security and the cloud.

Previously, the structure of Nouveau Solutions website was focused primarily around on-premise IT security solutions for our customers, cloud adoption and the rise in the multitude of security threats has meant that our business has seen a big shift to providing more security managed services and supporting our clients as they embrace the benefits from implementing cloud technology.

46% of UK businesses have suffered a cyber-attack of some sort, and without comprehensive cyber security, many of these businesses have suffered as a result, making it imperative that we are providing our customers with a complete managed IT security solution.

Berni Maguire, Head of Marketing at Nouveau Solutions says “As this year marks the major milestone of our 25th anniversary, we felt it was an ideal opportunity for us to rebrand our business and launch our new website, one that will take us forward into the next stage of our business success, whilst retaining much of our heritage and the core values that our business was built upon.

With a nod to our company name in French (new or modern, or wine to some) our new brand is fresh, modern, bold and simple. Quite simply, Nouveau will power your IT whenever you need us. We hope you like it.”

We have some exciting times ahead of us as we go into the next stage of our company transition, and we hope that you can join us as we head in to our next 25 years.

For more information about any of our new IT services don’t hesitate to explore the new website. Alternatively, you can get in touch with our expert consultants on 0118 918 6822 or fill in our contact form.


” I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all the prompt assistance you provided us with during this project.

Could you kindly express our gratitude to your engineers for the excellent work they carried out for us. “

Farhad | London Borough of Hounslow

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” Being responsible for IT in an organisation which is very tech dependant is a real challenge, especially having no formal IT experience myself.  Having the Nouveau team at the end of the phone is a real-life saver and I have needed a life line many times.  I most appreciate the accessibility, knowledge and friendliness of the team. “

Judith Ball | CFO | Aspen Worldwide

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Euronics Logo
” The company I work for has been using Nouveau Solutions for the past 15+ years and I have had the pleasure myself to build up a good, close relationship with them for about 12 of those years.

Nouveau Solutions have dedicated teams for each different area that are made up of very knowledgeable technicians and engineers that specialise in their specific area of expertise. It is due to this that I always feel confident that Nouveau Solutions will be able to deliver us any IT services that we may request from them (there has been a lot over the years).

They have always gone above and beyond to deliver high quality professional IT services to meet any requirements that we throw at them within any timeframes that we may set.

On top of the ad-hoc IT services we request from Nouveau Solutions, they also monitor, manage, maintain and support some of our network infrastructure and have always been on hand to resolve any issues that may be noticed via their monitoring or raised by us within a timely manner.

We also purchase the majority of our IT equipment including hardware, software and licensing through Nouveau Solutions which is always at a reasonable price and always received within a timely manner.

Since day one of our relationship with Nouveau Solutions we have been appointed to the same one account manager which has allowed him to get to know our business very well. The service that has been provided by him to us has been nothing but exceptional. He always comes across as knowledgeable in any business discussions that we may have and has always been happy to take the time to communicate with us, make us aware of anything that we need to be aware of, or provide us with updates on anything.  I have always had the impression that his main priority is to ensure that we are happy with everything that Nouveau Solutions provides to us and he will do anything to ensure that is the case.

All in all, I have nothing but praise to offer for Nouveau Solutions and would highly recommend them to any company that was looking for an IT services company.  There are definitely no plans here to switch to a different IT services company for the foreseeable future.

Here’s to many more years with using Nouveau Solutions! “

Lee Burgess | IT Systems Administrator | Combined Independents (Holdings) Ltd

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” Nouveau have been brilliant from start to finish – very professional and competitive with their service and pricing. We needed a large number of Firewalls to deploy across our global company over a very short time period and thanks to Jack’s excellent availability, Nouveau’s turn-around time was extremely swift, even with nearly no notice. Nouveau not only provided us with the hardware  – one of their competent technicians supplied us with some design work in the past to help with our data centre firewalls replacement project! Nouveau have been great to work with. “

Hassan Ashraf | IT Service and Infrastructure Manager | Everlight Radiology

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” In the summer of 2017, I approached Nouveau in the hope of finding a competent partner that could help us through an upcoming hardware refresh. A priority of ours was to discover a local business (within 20 miles) that excelled and specialised in HPE, Dell, Fortinet and Microsoft/Office 365 as we planned to refresh our whole core infrastructure,. This included storage, infrastructure hosting and networking (core, access and perimeter) for our headquarters and our other branches. After an extensive phase of speccing, detail planning and quoting, Andy Swain and his team were able to offer a “spot on” solution for our demands with a very high cost/value ratio. This project led to a very open and trusting partnership with Nouveau and made them our No.1 partner within IT. “

Stefan Nader | Ensilica

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