Cyber Attacks: 3 steps to protect your business

Date: August 14th, 2017

As we’ve been hearing in the media, cyber attacks directed at businesses are on the rise. The impact of these viruses and malware is potentially damaging, but your business needn’t become victim if you follow a few simple steps.

Impact of a cyber attack

The impact of a cyber attack can be as minor as your device running slowly or as major as lost data, stolen money and damage to your reputation. At worst, cyber attacks can shut down your business and have lasting impacts on people’s lives.

According to a 2016 Norton New Zealand SMB Cyber Security Survey, almost one in five small businesses in New Zealand have been targeted by a cyber attack, with an average loss of $19,000.

The Wannacry ransomware in May this year, which denied users access to their online files until a ransom was paid, is just one example of how malicious software can damage a business.

How to protect your business

There’s no sure-fire way to prevent an attack. However, we suggest these three simple, practical steps to reduce the risk.

1. Back up data and services

Backing up your computer, phone, apps or other devices means copying and storing the information in a separate location like cloud storage or a separate hard drive. If you are hit by ransomware attack, you won’t lose your data or be forced into paying money to get it back.

More about storing and protecting your data

2. Use up-to-date operating systems

If one of your devices alerts you to an update, don’t ignore it. The latest updates or versions often patch or repair any new vulnerabilities to cyber attacks.

Sometimes updating your system is as easy as restarting your computer or device. Other times, you may have to manually accept any new updates. You may be able to set your device’s system preferences to update automatically.

3. Keep your passwords safe

  • Use long, strong passwords, eg, mixture of upper and lower case, digits and other random characters such as #$@%.
  • Change any password that comes with a new device as soon as you get it.
  • Don’t use the same password for all your sites or staff. Hackers could get access to all your most sensitive information in one hit.
  • Do not store your passwords on your online systems or devices — this makes them too easy to find.

What to do if you get attacked

Report any cyber security problems to CERT NZ using their free online tool, or by phoning them on 0800 CERT NZ (0800 2378 69) within NZ, or +64 3 966 6295 from overseas. They’ll help you identify the problem and how to resolve it. CERT NZ works closely with partner agencies like Netsafe and NZ Police, and will pass on incidents as required.

More information from CERT NZ

Recent threats and what to do

Cyber security and your business

Getting started with cyber security

Posted in: Latest News

Arrowtown Engineering – Alistair Chalmers

Date: July 30th, 2017

Owner of Arrowtown Engineering, Alistair Chalmers, is a very clever engineer. He can tackle tricky projects and provide smart solutions that will have you thinking, “I wish I could have thought of that”. Based in Arrowtown this engineering firm have many local projects under their belts and are highly regarded engineers in the area.

We asked Alistair his thoughts on working with Findlay & Co, and this is what he said:

“We have worked with Scott for several years now, he is very good and we are very, very pleased!

“We feel as if Scott takes a very personal interest in our business, he is personable and he genuinely cares about the success of our business. He is patient in explaining things, he uses layman’s terms and he is careful to make sure that we understand before moving on.

“Scott has made me think about my approach to business and taught me to prioritize my time. He provided progress reports to show me where we were going and guidance to make significant changes.

“The office girls are excellent, nothing is ever a problem, they are incredibly helpful.

“Scott convinced us to move to Xero and it is the best thing we have done, it makes life simpler. The monthly payment is a wonderful idea and the charges are reasonable and fair.

“Scott is a very personable, likeable fella.”

Posted in: Clients

Custom Digital – Kristan & Ryan Jones

Date: July 30th, 2017

As specialists in superior multi-room audio systems, home theatre and home and commercial automation, Custom Digital ensures your home technology is suited to your lifestyle and is simple to use, so you can relax and enjoy it.

They offer expert advice and start-to-finish solutions from the initial consultation and design plan to the selection of products, installation and, importantly, follow-up support.

Their business has gone from strength to strength over the past few years and Findlay & Co have enjoyed being along for the ride. Custom Digital work with Phillippa and Scott for their accounting and bookwork. Kristan says, “As a small business, Findlay and Co have given us great advice, support and steered us in the right direction.  Their support is fantastic, constantly 100%.”

The best thing about working with Scott and the team is that Kristan and Ryan know with Xero, the books are spot on.  Kristan says she regularly contacts Philippa, “I can contact her any time for help with coding or any curly questions.  I am comfortable the year-end process will be straight-forward and not time consuming as the accounts have been correctly dealt with throughout the year.”

It sounds as if Ryan and Scott have a bit of fun when they get together too, they said, “The staff at Findlay & Co are always personable and very friendly. It’s enjoyable to sit down and have a meeting with Scott. He’s approachable, knows what he’s talking about and we have a bit of a laugh with him! It’s not all business!”

Thanks for the nice feedback Ryan and Kristan, we look forward to seeing you soon.

Posted in: Clients

Bradford Travel – Debbie Bradford

Date: July 30th, 2017

Debbie Bradford is a travel broker based in Cromwell; she runs her own successful business under the NZ Travel Broker banner. Debbie has taken her experience living and travelling overseas, attending international sporting competitions, organising business travel, conventions and family holidays, and turned it into a career.

Her key focus is helping clients travel successfully by listening to their needs, being creative and having an exceptional attention to detail. Debbie has worked closely with Wayne now for several years and she says the best thing about working with Findlay & Co is that they are a friendly team who are always available for advice and assistance. They have good communication and always keep in contact.

We asked Debbie how Findlay & Co have helped her business, she said,” they have excellent systems and simplistic results driven strategies to fine tune your business.” The two words Debbie uses to describe Wayne are relaxed and informative.

If you need to relax we suggest booking your next holiday through Debbie at NZ Travel Brokers. Thanks for the feedback Debbie!

Posted in: Clients

Optum Plumbing – Kevin Henderson

Date: July 30th, 2017

Kevin founded Optum Plumbing in 1996. He has a reputation for being professional and customer focused. Kevin has a passion for environmental and renewable energy technologies and has invested significantly in understanding and delivering the best systems to meet his customers’ requirements and ensure their homes are comfortable and energy efficient.

Kevin’s main role within the business is advisory and as Optum’s customer consultant for architects and homeowners he helps them to create great total plumbing & heating solutions. Kevin was once a semi-professional footballer and is now a keen marathon participant. Here at Findlay and Co we love this kind of drive!

We asked Kev the best thing about working with Findlay and Co, here is what he said:

“Findlay & Co really spent the time to get to know our business, what our goals are and what we want to achieve with our business. When they had that understanding, they were able to set the right structures and accounting packages to suit our needs and set about helping us focus on the financials and trends. This has been invaluable as we have grown our business.

“The whole team is really approachable, friendly and keen to help us achieve our goals. They respond quickly to calls and emails and their knowledge with Xero has helped our admin team understand their way around the software.

“Findlay & Co have helped us to grow our business by focusing on the financials and using “Spotlight” at the end of each month to keep an eye on the trends as they happen in real time and not at the end of the year when it might be too late to make the changes you need to make. We recently bought another business and used the expertise of Wayne and his team to go through the financials and business possibilities. This allowed us to make a decision based on fact and not fiction and to put a value on the purchase of that business. A year on and the numbers have all stacked up just as Wayne predicted they would!

“I believe that it does not matter what stage you are at with your business it is absolutely necessary to have the financials carried out regularly and backed up with the right knowledge and actions to take to keep on the right path. Findlay and Co has helped me understand what the numbers mean, which ones to focus on, and that there are no stupid questions. Their friendly manner and willingness to help make it easy for any of my team to call and get the answers they need.”

When we asked Kev to give us two words to describe Wayne he said: Honesty and Integrity. Keep up the great work Kev and thanks for the kind words!

Posted in: Clients

Break One – Blake Holden

Date: July 30th, 2017

Blake and the team at Break One have a passion for Clay Target Shooting and they are keen to share it. They are a family run business that offers a unique and action-packed activity for visitors, locals and folks from all walks of life to enjoy! With over 12 year’s experience, Break One Clay Target Sports has grown from what was a ‘hobby’ to introducing over 5000 people a year to their favourite sport.

Clay target shooting is the art of shooting at special flying targets known as clay targets or clay pigeons with a shotgun. These are thrown from a ‘trap’ or machine and come in a variety of forms simulating the flight of a duck or pheasant or the run of a rabbit.

Blake works closely with Wayne on the business. Blake says after his 25 plus years in business, Wayne and the team at Findlay and Co make accounting easy.

He says, “Findlay and Co have helped me understand the important numbers in my business by setting up easily understood reports, they have cut the time I spend on accounting matters in half at very competitive cost.”

When we asked Blake about Wayne he said, “working with Wayne is easy, he is very approachable, easy to understand, and always returns my calls.”

It seems these two can talk duck shooting and business, a recipe for success.

Posted in: Clients

Business Development

Date: July 18th, 2017

We offer business advice to help you meet your business objectives. We take a strategic view to drive your business in the right direction.

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Bookkeeping Services

Date: July 18th, 2017

We have a team of bookkeepers, pay roll specialists and Xero trainers on hand to help manage your day-to-day business tasks.

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Date: July 18th, 2017

We offer accounting packages to suit your needs. Our fees are transparent so you know what is involved.

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Date: July 18th, 2017

We offer educational courses and classes to help you manage your business better.

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