Category Archives: Business

Updated Privacy Legislation Comes into effect on 12 March 2014

All organisations and businesses should be aware of upcoming changes to Australian Privacy Laws. There are now 13 privacy principles, which are divided into 5 distinct categories:

  • General
  • Data Collection
  • Use of Personal Data
  • Integrity of Data
  • Access and correction

An excellent free summary available via the Association for Data-Driven Marketing & Advertsiing [ADMA] Knowledge Lab is worth downloading and reading from this link

For more detailed information, including background, please visit the Website of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner

At the very least all companies should update their privacy policies, and seek information from their particular industry bodies which should already have in place templates and documentation.

Over time there is no doubt that that any breaches (such as via a businesses’ customers personal information being hacked and for example distributed online) that hefty fines will apply. It would seem that outside any financial cost to an organisation such a breach would, as it already is, be harmful to that particular company’s reputation.

It is also worth reading ITNews Darren Pauli’s Article “Privacy Act Audits Will Consider Infosec Budgets”

Can I run my business in the Cloud?

I am often asked if it is possible to run a business using only cloud technologies and online services.

The simple answer is yes. Furthermore, if you are a business starting out one should ask the question why wouldn’t you? There are significant cost-savings, and less potential anguish for business owners if set up correctly.

If you were a new business you could be pretty much up and running within 24 hours!

Businesses no longer need to have an on-Premise Server (and all the management this entails). It should be noted that Microsoft’s Small Business Server as a product ended on 31 December 2013. Businesses requiring a Server can still have all the functions provided by SBS as standalone products e.g. Microsoft Exchange, but with costs of licensing increasing, set up costs & ongoing maintenance, it would seem no longer a feasible cost to bear for SMBs.

Many businesses have already started migrating some technologies to the Cloud, in particular Microsoft Exchange (either Hosted or via Office 365) or Google Apps for Business, i.e. they are running a hybrid system (some on site and some in the Cloud). If a Server is required maybe worth considering having a physical Box installed at a Data Centre, or run a Virtual Server (in the Cloud).

For a new business husbanding cash is an important consideration. So why not move from a Capex model to knowing ‘exactly’ what you are spending each month, whilst also allowing the flexibility to gear up quickly if business is a success, e.g. adding additional employees. So you have cost savings and flexibility.

Whilst any individual can set this all up themselves I have found there are many pitfalls if you try to do so. Better to spend some of the money you have ‘saved’ on purchasing expensive equipment on an IT Professional whom has done this for others previously and can put it all in place for you, and have it set up properly at the start. This allows the business owner to get on with running and marketing their business.

So what does a New Business require?

  • Register a Company and/or Business Name, including an Australian Business Number [ABN];
  • Register a Domain Name;
  • Set up email;
  • Create a Website,;
  • Marketing and Promotion of your business online & offline;
  • Purchase Hardware – Laptop, Tablet, Mobile Broadband, Printer, SmartPhone, External Hard Drive(s);
  • Software – Internet Security, Password Management, Online Backup, Remote Management, Microsoft Office, Specific Line of Business [LOB] Software related to your Business type;
  • Virtual Assistant;
  • Accounting System;
  • Business Cards;
  • Put others to work for you and project manage your tasks;
  • If your business requires an office then an ADSL2+ Connection, requiring then a likely wireless/modem Router, or renting a Serviced Office to meet prospective customers. Increasingly, with Mobility does your business (at least at the start) require physical premises? Would you purchase or lease an ISDN Phone connection? Unlikely. So what about VoIP, which can be set up for use no matter where you are physically located.
  • A social networking presence.

With the right guidance a new business can be up and running using the range of tools & services of today’s Internet almost before one knows it.