Spring is the time to fling open the windows, dust away the cobwebs, and start over after the cold months of winter have passed. And while the majority of IT professionals agree that maintaining the IT house is a 365-day effort, spring serves as a reminder to pull out the gloves and dig deeper into the dusty nooks and corners of your datacenter – from operational/structural debt to cyber risks, and obsolete policies to organization.
Make cleaning your IT system an annual occurrence. Use the following list of topics as a guide during your spring cleaning journeys:
Reevaluate Policies and Procedures
Many of these policies and procedures are put into place for a variety of reasons – some of them never to be looked at again. This could include someone needing a new report type or custom workflow, but it also includes reviewing and reevaluating important policies – such as passwords, security awareness training, backup schedules, DR plans, and more.
A common issue is that once adoptions are made, many IT departments rarely look back to them – occupied by the new task at hand. Make sure these policies and procedures still align with where your company is today and is prepared for any potential incidents.
Update Passwords & Enable Multi-Factor Authentication
Every day you use a weak password or don’t utilize two-factor authentication, you’re putting yourself and business at risk. And as data breaches and large-scale cyberattacks become more regular, part of this will remain beyond our control.
Make your passwords complicated by using a combination of numbers, letters, and symbols. Yes, it may be harder to remember, but it’s significantly more secure. Passwords should be changed every six to twelve months to decrease the possibility of cyberattacks. However, the more frequently you change your passwords, the safer you’ll be long-term. Using a password manager, such as LastPass, can assist you in managing and storing this information.
Clean Your Browser
As you use your browser, unused data will eventually begin to pile up, causing the browser to get slower and congested over time. This can become problematic and stressful, but there is a way to resolve this issue. Erasing your history, cached files, and cookies will help you regain that space and, ultimately, speed. It’s recommended that you should do this at least once a month. Not only will this clean up the ad targeting by refreshing your cache and cookies, but it will also alert you to any new security features that have been introduced, such as multi-factor authentication.
Clean Your Equipment
While the previous topics cover digitally cleaning your equipment, here I’m referring to cleaning your equipment in a physical manner. This could include dusting, sweeping, organizing, labeling, and more. Not only will this help the appearance of your systems, but it can also prevent future problems that could cost a lot of time and money. This type of preventative care significantly reduces risks – both physical and digital – and overall money expenditure,
It’s simple, yet frequently overlooked – If you want your car to run smoothly, you should service it once a year; if you want your house to stay clean, you should dust it on a regular basis; and if you want your computers and IT systems to stay fast, efficient, and responsive, it requires its own maintenance – a digital spring cleaning.