Universal Remotes: Four Reasons Why You Should Buy One Now

Universal remotes have been around for a while, and for some reason, some people are still wary of them. The wariness stems from an inability to properly program and receive support for the remote. If properly programmed, however, the Universal Remote can quickly become your best friend. Here’s why:

One remote, just one, for everything!

That’s right. It doesn’t matter if you have VHS, Roku, Cable, DVD Player, Blue Ray Player, a Sound System AND satellite TV for good measure. Your universal remote can be programmed to control all of these devices, leaving you with a lack of remote clutter and a lot of space. Not only will you no longer face a veritable pile of remotes every day, you will also never have to go through the agony of choosing the right remote for the right device or the humiliation of ineffectively pressing a remote, only to end up frustrated to realize that it belongs to another device.

A single pair of batteries

You will no longer have to spend a fortune in buying batteries and maintaining a little stockpile to keep all your remotes recharged. Just a single pair of batteries or as many as are required by a single remote will be sufficient. Not only will you save on batteries, you will also help the environment by not consuming vast quantities of batteries. Batteries are hard things to dispose of safely and are toxic pollutants. Universal remotes not only save you from spending too much money on batteries, they also help you become more environmentally responsible

Easy-to-use

With a universal remote, instead of teaching yourself the idiosyncrasies of multiple remotes, you only have to learn the functioning of one. And an easy-to-use one, too. Most universal remotes are designed with ease-of-use in mind and also with the idea that they have to be device agnostic. You’re more likely to find it easier to use your universal remote for your TV than the TV remote itself.

New technology

The best part about universal remotes is that just as technology evolves, they evolve too. You can program them to help support a higher number of devices than before and some come with options to help program light fixtures and ambient settings. Others have touch screen interfaces for easy usage and customization options for each of the devices connected. The new interface also helps solve old customer complaints of the previous interface being difficult to use.

With all these new options and the original ease of use, universal remotes are better than ever. Go out and get yourself one today!

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Benefits of Setting up an Alarm System at Your Office

Offices are visited by many people, including employees, clients, workers and contractors. An office is constantly exposed to people who are unknown to you or people who have access to various areas of the office. It is not always possible to keep an eye on every new person who enters the office, or on all your employees while they are at work. Your office may also be vulnerable to external threats when you are not around. That is why it is essential to get an alarm system installed in your office space.

Still not convinced? Here are a few more benefits of having a good security system in place at your office.

Advantages of having a security system installed at your workplace

  • Decreases incidences of theft, mishandling and wrongful behavior among your employees while in the office.
  • You will be able to insure your office space for at a less cost if you have a security system in place. Many insurance companies have this clause in their policies for businesses.
  • Having security systems in place can help deter or reduce the incidence of theft and burglary when you are not around and the office is locked. If such an incident does occur, your cameras will be able to provide you with crucial proof for insurance claims and evidence to give the cops.
  • You can monitor your employees and all others who enter your office during work hours. It will help you know if employees are engaging in any kind of wrongful activities.

Things to keep in mind about security systems

  • Always choose a security company that has been around for a while, has good references and has made a name for itself.
  • Choose a company that you trust completely. Your security company will be looking after the complete setup, and will know the space inside out, so you need someone you trust.
  • Look at various options and choose a security system that makes the most sense for your office space. You can ask the company you hire for suggestions on what will work best for your space.
  • Keep the system well maintained and serviced for best results.
  • Understand that burglars and hackers are also equally familiar with latest technology. You cannot expect 100 percent protection.

Getting a security system in place for your office will give you some peace of mind and secure your office space even when you are not around.

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Benefits of Using a Universal Remote Control

A remote that lets you control several devices is referred to as a universal remote control. The remote control comes pre-programmed for many devices or you can add additional systems to it depending on its design. Universal remote controls offer a number of benefits to users.

Ease of use

One big advantage of a universal remote controls is the ease of use. Now you don’t need to fumble around different remotes for your television, home theater, gaming console and other entertainment systems. Nor do you need to learn the workings of different remotes. Whatever devices you have connected to your universal remote, you get the benefit of ease. Universal remotes also come with large buttons so these are easier to use for people with weak eyesight or arthritic fingers. You can also use a universal remote with special features that allow you to hook it up with your phones or locks. There are many different types of universal remotes available in the market and you can purchase one that suits your needs.

Convenience

It is of course convenient to use just one universal remote than several to control each of your devices. Now all you need is one universal remote and you are all set. These are especially great for the elderly to use. If you are an elderly person living alone constantly or at least most of the time, a universal remote can be a great convenience to have around you. These are also great to have around assisted living facilities or homes for seniors. These universal remotes are also great to use if you have kids in the house.

Inexpensive to use

Powering one universal remote is more economical than spending money on batteries for each of your remotes. The cost of batteries can be significant in the long run. If you buy a universal remote with rechargeable batteries you end up saving even more money along the way.

Eliminates clutter

One remote can be neatly placed at a convenient place, which all family members can access easily. This ensures that you have a neat space be it your living room or your bedroom. As it is hooking up several entertainment systems and consoles requires the use of many wires and cables and they require a streamlined arrangement or else your house can look a tangled mess. Add to it several remotes scattered here and there and you get a messier room cluttered with unnecessary items.

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Effective Ways To Backup Your Files

You probably don’t realize it, but as long as you work with a computer, your data is always at risk of getting lost. There are plenty of ways in which you can lose important data from your computer. That’s exactly why you need to start taking data/file backup seriously.

Losing files can cause serious damage to your work and even to your personal life. For example, if you’re the accountant of a company and you store all the files in your system, a data loss scenario could put you out of a job and even shut down the business. So, the next time you’re on the computer, try and follow these simple data backup strategies. They are highly effective and will go a long way in protecting your data.

Local backup

If you can’t use complex back-up mechanisms, then don’t worry. Just create a local backup by transferring your files to an external hard disk. This is the easiest way to backup data without any hassles. However, do make sure that the disk is accessible only to you, especially if you’re transferring sensitive files. Also, handle the disk with care. Moving it around too much can cause damage. Backing up your data this way can save you time and also, make the data available to you immediately.

Cloud backup

The advantage with cloud backup is that there are no risks of physical failure, unlike the risks you have with a hard disk or CD. Plus, cloud storage is more of a service offered by providers, which means they’ll pay extra attention to the security of your data, leaving you with very little to worry about. Even the security infrastructure is maintained by the cloud service provider, which means robust protection for your files. However, a cloud service will require you to have a constant connection to the internet and if you deal with large files, then you’ll need a seriously fast connection. Above all, you may have to pay for the service.

Use both

If you can afford it, then there’s nothing like having a remote backup along with a local backup. This way, you can be sure that at least one of them will be available to you during a time of crisis. Plus, you also get the flexibility of choosing between the two backup options depending on circumstances. For example, if you’re travelling to a remote location with no internet, then the local backup in your external hard disk will come in handy. Similarly, you could use the cloud backup to access your files at work and leave the hard disk at home. That way, your hard disk won’t be at constant risk of physical damage.

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Cellphone Signal Boosters: A Necessity

Often where there is no signal or network it can render a fully functioning phone into a useless device. Situations like these lead to disconnected calls and can be a major hassle to daily social or business calls. In these cases, the cellphone booster technology comes into use. A cellphone booster is a device that is used to boost the signal of a cellphone, through an internal antenna, a reception antenna and a signal amplifier. They work on the same principle of a signal tower, but on a much smaller scale. What cellphone boosters do is that they take the weak reception from your phone, increases its amplification and broadcasts it again.

With the advance in technology, cellphone boosters are being increasingly commercialized and in the current market, there are advanced versions available that can boost the signal of more than one device at a given time. Among the several brands that sell cellphone boosters, Wilson Technology and Z Boost have introduced their device which can be used for a small office or for home use. The device is roughly priced at around $300 in the market and using its specifications you can delve further into the advantages of cellphone boosters.

Advantages of cellphone booster devices

  • Cellphone boosters give an increased reception indoors and in areas where there is very bad reception.
  • They decrease the number of missed calls marginally and lost connections rarely occur while using a cellphone signal booster.
  • Data and media can be downloaded faster, due to better reception and it saves the tedious loss you often undergo due to slow downloads. It is because the use of a cellphone booster not only increases the speed of your internet, it also stabilizes your connectivity.
  • Calls made and received are crystal clear when a signal booster is used.
  • They increase the battery life of your cellphone, which increases its usability for a longer duration.
  • It is a compact device and is portable, which means it can be carried and used anywhere where there is a lack of good signal.
  • They have low maintenance and can be installed and used without much difficulty.

The device by Wilson Electronics and Z Boost offers all the above advantages. It is designed for use within a small room, but you can opt for different models depending on your consumption. The signal increases by more than ten times, making it one of the best devices in the market to opt for.

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Disaster Recovery – Overloaded VPN

In today’s world, companies are constantly in touch with their employees irrespective of their location. To keep their top performers and provide seamless solutions to clients, companies provide work from home facility to a few employees. To provide this option to around 10-15 percent of their employees on a temporary basis, companies configure their wide area networks to provide required bandwidth to remote employees.

How companies prepare to handle disaster

When there was a swine flu outbreak in 2009 network managers of large companies found themselves facing the likelihood of large number of employees requesting work from home option. As most companies had limited facilities in their remote network infrastructure it was impossible for them to allow all their employees to work remotely simultaneously. So they resorted to a rotational system wherein groups of people worked remotely while others worked at office and vice versa.

When Cisco conducted a survey the same year to study use of remote working facilities it found out that only three out of four could provide remote access to all their employees and could not handle expansion beyond a certain point of time. Though technology is available to allow employees to work from home through virtual private networks or (VPN) several factors must be taken into consideration before using the facilities.

Supporting remote workers through VPN during disaster

When you face a surge in demand for remote work, first check with your service provider for options they can offer to handle large requests for network access. The next step is to check with your equipment suppliers about the ability to provide network licenses and other equipment within a short period of time. This will prepare you to handle responses from employees with the right kind of bandwidth and equipment. In order to have a situation wherein your employees are never short of connectivity with the company then keep a backup that can take care of VPN issues in case your regular service provider or equipment provider is not able to cope.

Maintaining communication with managed network

To manage a surge in demand for remote , companies can also employ services of network service firms which offer remote access on demand. Then can help firms deal with an emergency surge in demand by connecting their employees to the corporate network through secure VPN which are managed by third parties. Advance planning is necessary to evaluate available sources that can help you manage the surge in demand for remote connectivity. This way you can either use managed networks or get a hybrid arrangement wherein existing infrastructure can be clubbed with cloud-based network providers.

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Surveillance Cameras For Your Home or Business

Given the numerous choices in the world of home security systems today, it’s not unusual to find homeowners in a fix when it comes to narrowing down to one. There are various factors that come into account while choosing home security cameras, and we explain what you need to take into consideration when you go shopping for one. When you’re ready to choose the right camera system give Owyls a call at 985-231-6095 and put the video surveillance system professionals on your side.

What type of security camera should you choose?

The first thing to look for in security cameras is the lighting of the area where it will be installed. You want to make sure that the camera offers clear footage in all lighting conditions, even if the artificial lighting in the ambient area is not present during power-cuts. You may also want to look at night-vision cameras if required. Another point that needs to be considered is if you want a camera that is fixed or has features like pan, tilt and zoom features. For an outdoor camera it’s also important to ensure that it’s IP66 rated to ensure it is fully weatherproofed.

Secure installation of security camera

Installation of your security system is just as crucial as choosing the right one for your home. Often, the security camera is installed in vulnerable positions when homeowners take the task upon themselves without any prior experience. The difference between a security camera that is installed by an someone less experienced vs the professionals at Owyls is that it may not be properly wired, pointed or secured.

What about monitoring?

A security camera is not of much use if it cannot alert you when you are outside your home. In case you are not at home and someone breaks in, the camera immediately captures the footage and alerts security personnel at the monitoring station, so they can call the cops. There are also security systems where footage from the camera can be viewed live on a secure site so homeowners know exactly what is happening and that their home is secure even when they are out on a vacation or busy at work.

Owyls Security offers the most advanced security system in Mandeville, LA and Covington, LA and Slidell, LA and New Orleans, LA and Hammond, LA – call us today 985-231-6095 and let us setup a new alarm system for you!

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Creating A Design Language

Greetings and thank you for giving me some of your time to give this blog a read! My name is Christian White and this is my very first time posting a blog on our website. I am one of the four co-founders of Owyls. I currently serve as our Chief Sales & Brand Officer (I’m still unsure how I feel about being an “officer” it just sounds weird to me) and Creative Director. Basically to spare you a ton of wordy elaboration it’s my duty to make us look good. I have a very extensive background in the world of design and any project that I take on I do so with the utmost focus and attention to detail. I want to take a few moments to focus on that word: Design. Design, by it’s very definition, is the planning, or intention that exists or is thought to exist behind an action, fact, or material object. When you hear the word design the first thought that comes to mind is of course the aesthetics. We all want design that looks great and makes a brand eye catching, flashy, and representative of the purpose they serve. Naturally, that should be the intention and goal of anyone designing something is to create something that’s attractive to the viewer of course. When I began this project, which though it feels like I’ve been working on this forever is still in it’s infancy; I did so with a greater intention than crafting something that simply looks good. I’ve always strived to go beyond creating something just for the sake of creating. And there’s lots of labels out there these days for the current trends in designs like: “It’s sleek, it’s modern, it’s minimal” etc. and don’t get me wrong I think that all of those are great. But my intention here is for our design to exude what we strive to accomplish as a company. I believe that design, which in my opinion is the single most important priority for any brand, should personify the qualities of your brands’ purpose.

That leads me into the next part of this article which if you’re not familiar with us please allow me to get you up to speed. Some of you are probably wondering: “Okay this all sounds great, and deep, and stuff…but what is Owyls? What’s up with the weird spelling? Is it still pronounced like the bird?” To answer the most frequent of those questions yes it’s pronounced just like owls and the “y” is silent but it holds a purpose. I’m going to touch base on all of those questions, but I’m going to take on the first question of explaining what Owyls is. Because honestly whenever I am asked what exactly it is that we do or in particular what my job entails, sometimes there’s a brief pause that exists between me and the asker. I stop to always consider the audience that I am answering because more often than not I wonder: “Will they think that I’m vain if I sit and elaborate on how great we are or worse think I’m a typical sales person? Am I going to successfully get the point across of how we strive to better both the knowledge and convenience of technology for our clients?” So because I have to be respectful of peoples time and because there’s not always a chair to pull up for someone to get comfy, I will review a few of the core services that we provide and close the conversation with something along the lines of: “We’re a technology and media company with a wide portfolio of services for homes and businesses and providers of media digest content online”. And that is the short answer. So I feel an obligation that the representation of our brand must embody that passion when you only have time for selective wording vs. everything that you wish you could say. Your brand should give your audience a positive first impression so that they want to delve deeper into the premise. At Owyls we deliver the very best of technology and make it more approachable for all. Rather than using lofty words like goals, striving, etc we make it simple for our clients and do what we promise to do. The team at Owyls are confident, intelligent, precise, and friendly people there to answer all of your “why?”, or as it’s displayed in our name: “y”, questions toward technology. Owyls is an acronym we came up with that stands for “Our Wisdom, Your Life, Smarter”.

So now that I’ve gotten you a little more familiar with what Owyls is, I’d like for you to take a stroll down the road so far with our branding. Like most companies making a final decision on how to perfectly display yourself is an extremely difficult task. It’s next to near impossible for you to leave it up to solely your design to define you and if you’re like myself you never know when to say that you’re really finished with a project. I’m probably more obsessive over the unnoticed details than most so please excuse me if at any point I obsess over something that at the end of the day to most serves no purpose. To myself, every single detail no matter how minute it may seem caters to the final product which in my opinion gives it a great purpose. But before I get too deep into our new design philosophy allow me show you our very first (BTW for all images if you want a closer look at them just click on each):

Our First Logo

Owyls First Logo

 

Barn Owl

Barn Owl

We made the decision to use a barn owl for a few reasons. First off, most logo’s that use owls tend to use your standard horned owl as the subject matter. I felt very fond of the barn owl because of it’s heart shaped face and overall simplistic beauty. I’ve always had a strong belief that whatever it is you decide to do in life to make sure that it’s done with love. I couldn’t imagine a more appropriate representation of that love than a heart being very subliminally hidden within our mascot. My partners supported the direction behind the decision and we’ve used a barn owl since. This logo was outsourced through a very talented graphic designer that we stumbled upon and served it’s purpose for quite a while. At that time my hands were buried deep in other avenues of our company’s start up so I could not contribute my full focus or time on that logo. Even though I had much input on how it turned out I always felt like there was something missing from it. It’s a clean and simple logo but I didn’t feel that it represented our brand properly. And “Whoo You Can Turn To”… maybe not the best idea that I’ve contributed! Some time after I decided to take it upon myself to set aside the time to work on a new logo that represented our desires of striving toward perfection. I know that nothing is perfect but the effort to always want to be better is the perfect attitude. When I thought on that concept and how that could tie directly back to design I immediately thought of a circle. Circles commonly represent unity, wholeness, and infinity. Without beginning or end, without sides or corners, the circle is also associated with a sense of precision and perfection. I gravitated toward that and began to research and build upon the concept of a logo with a composition made completely out of circles. I found that many of the most popular and widely recognizable companies out there used circle construction for their logos as well, but very mildly. So after countless hours of research, the input of my partners, and all of us tossing around ideas of how exactly we wanted to be represented I came up with the following:

Owyls Process

Owyls Process

 

Owyls Logo

Owyls Logo

We’ve gotten so many compliments on this logo and I’m delighted that the reception has been so positive. It’s a clean, simple yet strong logo that we’ve been very proud of. We’ve used this current logo for almost two years now and in that time I’ve continued researching ways to refine it even further than it is now. I wanted us to not just retain the current qualities of our logo but elevate those details to a new level of polish and perfection. To do that I did some very heavy research on a design grid system called the Golden Ratio. In the world of art, architecture, and design, the Golden Ratio has earned a tremendous reputation. To spare you a bunch of elaborate mathematical explanation the Golden Ratio is used for it’s “divine proportion” and in theory accomplish the closest that the human eye can perceive perfect ratios. That being said the Golden Ratio was used along with the circle construction to achieve this guy:

Owyls Logo 2015 Process

Owyls Logo 2015 Process

Owyls Logo 2015 Process Close Up

Owyls Logo 2015 Process Close Up

You’ll notice that yellow grid system front and center. I’m sure that some of you are saying “It looks really close to the last one” and you’d be mostly correct with that conclusion. The idea here was not to re-invent, but re-define a logo that we were already quite pleased with. What we end up with now is a logo that’s construction is more logically laid out, exceedingly more proportionate, and above all much more graceful and elegant. The next step in the project was to repeat this same level of detail in the new typography. Literally each and every character found on a standard keyboard all designed with the same intention and refinement as the new logo. So lots of coffee and hours of frustration later and this was the result:

Owyls "Symmetry" Typeface With Guidelines

Owyls “Symmetry” Typeface With Guidelines

Owyls "Symmetry" Typeface

Owyls “Symmetry” Typeface

We call the new typeface “Owyls Symmetry” and we’re quite proud of it. When you look at the guidelines you’ll notice that each character is constructed using a very precise placement of circles. Once the placement is set each character goes into a standard gridline placement along with a second look over using that same Golden Ratio grid system. The result is a typeface that is not only aesthetically pleasing but because of its circular nature scales efficiently for maximum legibility at all sizes.

Grid System

Grid System

With this latest rendition of our logo we wanted to accept nothing but the absolute best of ourselves. I wanted to craft branding that highlights confidence, intelligence, precision, and friendliness just like us and I do believe that we’ve hit the nail on the head with this one. It’s makes me so proud to finally show of our latest version of an already beautiful logo:

 

Owyls Logo Refined 2015

Owyls Logo Refined 2015

 

I could not be more happy with the results. Since the beginning of trying to conceptualize our brand almost 3 years ago I finally feel like our logo feels complete. But of course this is only the beginning of the creation of a design language. The intention is to have a design philosophy that speaks to the viewer where each design element that you see from us will have the same level of polish and refinement as the next. A design family that keeps the same level of consistency throughout and is automatically recognizable as Owyls design. I want to express my gratitude to everyone that’s put input and time into this project. It’s taken a ton of effort to get to this point and we have quite the workload ahead of us. In the coming weeks and months be on the lookout for a complete refresh of all of our current branding materials and digital advertisement along with a brand new website built from the ground up. I can’t wait to show off everything that we create and I hope that everyone enjoys it as much as we’ve enjoyed creating it. Thank you so much for giving this a read and please feel free to drop some feedback my way at [email protected] And as always if you’re in need of anything that involves technology you can count on Owyls to elevate what’s possible. Thanks!

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Do You Have a Disaster Recovery Plan in Place?

As a company, you will definitely face the risk of losing data at some pint or the other, whether due to a virus, machine error, power failure, natural disaster and so on. Below are some statistics to give you an idea about how businesses deal with data loss disasters:

  • 90 percent of business firms which lose data owing to a disaster have no option but to close down in a time period of two years.
    The rate of survival for companies which do not have a disaster recovery backup plan is lower than 10 percent.
  • Merely 44% of business firms could successfully retrieve data following a database recovery effort.
  • 53% of the claimants are never able to recover from the losses suffered as a result of a disaster.

The statistics mentioned above give a fair bit of idea on the magnitude of losses your business could incur (from significant financial failures to complete shutdown) when you don’t have a disaster recovery plan. But these statistics are only a part of the whole picture. You need to understand what disaster recovery plan looks like and the need for such a plan. How can it help your business be safe and secure?

What is a disaster?

First and foremost, it is vital to comprehend the meaning of a disaster. Disaster can be defined as any sort of event which interferes with your ability to keep the business running.

When you realize that a disaster can be anything which disrupts the normal functioning of a business, you come to accept the actual value or importance that a disaster recovery plan has.

When you consider major natural disasters (earthquakes, tornadoes, storms), you feel disaster recovery to be hopeless and extremely overwhelming. In addition to this, it would also be very expensive. A lot of time and investment would be needed to revive and even get the critical business processes back to minimal operational order.

Why you need a recover plan

Understand this that you’re not exactly planning to deal with a tornado which wipes off your business. You want to keep yourself prepared for each time that any of the servers fail, or the system gets hit by a virus, or a power failure occurs , or even if an enraged employee decides to delete sensitive files.

In any of the above mentioned events, your business will suffer losses. These events can interrupt the smooth functioning of your business, waste precious resources and prevent customers from investing in your product/service.

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Does Your Business Have a Disaster Recovery Strategy?

No business owner likes to think of the possibility that their business may be brought to its knees by a disaster, either man-made or natural. However, this is not a good enough reason to remain blind to this very real possibility. A business disaster recovery strategy is much like your life insurance policy. You don’t want to think about your death, but you still plan for the contingency and this is exactly what you should do with your business too- prepare and plan ahead for the worst. A disaster recovery strategy is your best move to ensure that your business can remain as sustainably on course towards its goals as possible despite disruptions to operations. Take a look at some of the advantages of having an effective plan for your business.

Understand the limitations of your present system

Working on a disaster recovery plan for your business forces you to analyze what could happen if a major event happens. In many businesses, there are weaknesses that remain concealed while normal operations are being carried out. These lapses become glaringly obvious when disaster strikes and they could become the reason why the business folds up. For example, a business that cannot recover customer contact information loses its ability to market its products effectively. When you setup a disaster recovery plan, you are forced to analyze every aspect of the business and this brings to your notice the issues that you may remain unaware about until it is too late.

Minimize the disruption to your business operations

Imagine this scenario- an unprecedented snow storm has frozen the city, shut down roads and none of your staff can reach the office. You have client needs to be fulfilled within strict deadlines. If you had planned ahead for an event that could keep your staff out of the office, you may have setup a cloud based system that can give your staff access to everything they need to complete the most critical deliveries, right out of their homes. There are many such ways in which disaster recovery planning can help you minimize the disruption to your business operations and enable you to at least get the most critical jobs done even when your business is in shut down mode.

Keep customers informed and happy

One critical requirement for any business is to keep its customers informed of why it is unable to cater to them. This is especially important if the disaster is not a statewide one or nationwide one and it only affects your business (like a virus attack on your systems). You could potentially lose hundreds of customers and erode the trust and goodwill you have built-up in the marketplace if you keep everyone in the dark about what is happening and when you will be back in business. Keeping your customers informed, explaining the steps you are taking to protect their privacy and giving them a clear picture of the entire situation is possible if you have planned ahead for such a contingency with your disaster recovery plan.

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