Avoid Being Scammed by One-Man-Band IT Companies
COVID-19 has seen plenty of cyber criminals attempting to prey upon businesses who might be under threat. Between ransomware attacks rising and business’ cyber defences lowering due to a combination of factors, there have been many different dangers for companies to navigate their way through.
Another longstanding threat is that posed by con men and women. Recently, Neuways has come across a business that was sold a server for a huge six times the price of its real value. The business believed they were paying close to the true value of the item as they trusted their one-man-band IT guy. But upon closer investigation of the situation, Neuways discovered that they had been completely overcharged.
This type of scam has been going on for years, but to avoid it continuing, Neuways wants to issue the warning signs to look out for whenever you are considering working with an often cheaper one-man-band.
Once the decision has been made as to the new equipment required in your business, a thorough selection process should be carried out to ensure equipment is purchased from the most reputable supplier at the best possible value.
It’s essential to obtain an IT strategy document from your incumbent supplier with a range of price and capability options. This will give your business adequate information to select the plan that works best for you. If this range is not provided, then your business risks selecting an option that is both unsuitable for its needs and out of its price range.
To avoid being scammed, we also recommend you run any options provided by your one-man-band past the expert eyes of an independent IT support company. This will give you a well-rounded idea of how much you will need to be spending, whether the capabilities of your chosen technology are fit for your purpose and what will be received in return. By taking this approach, your business is benefitting from the advice of several organisations and not just taking the word of a one-man-band.
Choosing the Right IT Partner to Avoid Being Scammed
Before partnering with somebody, a business must do its research. Search for a customer list on any prospective partner’s website and read any available case studies. If there are none published, then find contact details and directly contact any customers for a reference.
Additionally, a sign of the supplier’s quality can be seen through any awards and qualifications they have won/received. If the supplier has a wealth of industry-recognised commendations, then a business can engage in discussions over IT equipment feeling a lot more comfortable.
One-person suppliers simply will not have all of the required IT knowledge and experience for a business to benefit from. This is due to the vast disciplines, from innovation and cyber-security, to business continuity and ERP, they may well claim to be experts in – a supposed ‘jack of all trades’ may well be a master of none.
To avoid being scammed, it is important to remember to never be afraid to walk away if anyone within the business gets a bad feeling. Our warning is to make sure due diligence checks are always made around the validity of anyone the business is prepared to spend thousands of pounds with.
The Neuways process is to understand a business’ goals and strategies, and purchase hardware that will help them achieve those goals. As a result, we offer a range of solutions that fit a business’ budget.
If a supplier approaches the business in a more direct manner and immediately wants to talk money, then it might be time to back out of negotiations. They more than likely will not have the business’ best interests at heart, and may be trying to vastly overcharge. If your business has already been conned out a sum of money, as the business we mentioned at the start of this advisory had been, then we would advise pulling the plug and finding a more reputable supplier immediately.
This supplier can then review your business’ systems, and provide some suggestions for improvements – it might turn out that other areas of the business’ IT functions have been affected by the scammers and further damage than was initially thought has been done.