Why Prevention is the Key to Maintaining Your Tech Equipment

Do you have a preventive maintenance plan to keep your tech equipment functioning properly? Perhaps you have a solid warranty for your most expensive components, but that’s not enough. A warranty will get you back up and running after a breakdown, but it’s better to prevent those breakdowns from happening in the first place.

Some breakdowns can be permanent

Without a preventive maintenance plan, your devices are at risk. Not all breakdowns are recoverable; certain breakdowns can do permanent damage. For instance, one cyberattack can render a device inoperable, which is why prevention is so critical.

Tech equipment requires regular maintenance

Tech equipment will inevitably break down at some point and this is beyond your control. However, some breakdowns are preventable. Also, certain types of equipment require regular maintenance or they will break down.

When your tech equipment malfunctions, it can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars to fix. If you want to avoid repair-related expenses and extend the life of your tech equipment, you need to focus on preventive maintenance.

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What is preventive maintenance?

Preventive maintenance is like tuning up your car once in a while – hardware gets tightened, dust is cleared, firmware gets updated, and other things are done to make sure your equipment continues to function.

For instance, if you’re doing preventive maintenance on your server room, your machines will get dusted, connections will be tightened, and the airflow will be optimized.

Predictive maintenance takes prevention to new levels

Predictive maintenance, according to Cetaris, is a “strategy that relies on collecting sensor measurements, calculating future performance, and then scheduling the actual maintenance work to take place at a time it would provide the most benefit for the least amount of cost or downtime.”

In a nutshell, IoT sensors, combined with monitoring equipment, feed live data to a predictive maintenance application that automatically calculates and schedules the maintenance work.

If you run expensive tech equipment, you may want to look into predictive maintenance. This technological advancement is truly one of the best forms of prevention. Humans can’t manually sense and predict when equipment needs repairs the way automated sensors can.

For instance, if you don’t physically touch your servers multiple times a day, you’ll never know when one is overheating. However, a sensor will know immediately and will alert you according to its program.

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Remember cybersecurity prevention

Certain types of cyberattacks can damage your physical hardware and firmware, so don’t forget to include cybersecurity in your prevention strategy. For instance, if your servers or laptops fall victim to a ransomware attack, you may need to replace them.

Although ransomware attacks promise to restore your data after you pay a ransom, this is the worst type of attack you could possibly experience. It’s not wise to pay ransoms, as there is no guarantee the hacker will unlock your files. Also, paying the ransom just gives them incentive to continue their exploits. The more people pay ransoms, the more cybercriminals continue using ransomware attacks to exploit others, knowing people will pay.

How preventive maintenance works with cybersecurity

You can use predictive maintenance to prevent cyberattacks of all types, including ransomware attacks. It’s not hard to implement when you have the right software and a strong IT tech to set it up for you.

Periodically, here are some simple actions that will help keep your tech equipment safe from cyberattacks.

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  1. Run antivirus scans regularly

Running antivirus software is critical and should be the foundation for all your cybersecurity efforts. You’ll want to scan every device that connects to your network and every device your employees use to perform work, even offline. If you’re running a business with employees, for example, you’ll want to run regular antivirus scans on their machines to make sure they’re clean.

You’ll want to do the same with your servers, if you have any. It’s also smart to review your cybersecurity policies once in a while with your employees. For example, remind them of your policies for not sharing login information, not transmitting unencrypted, sensitive data over emails, and the like.

  1. Back up your data regularly

Data backups are a critical part of preventive maintenance where cybersecurity is concerned. Periodically, you’ll want to back up your files in full, including your website files and all databases. This backup should be stored offline, so it’s not connected to the internet and therefore vulnerable to cyberattacks.

You can keep a working backup on an external hard drive or keep a backup in the cloud. It really depends on how much data you need to store. Cloud backups are great because you can run them automatically and download them as you wish. Backups on physical hard drives are limited by space constraints and require manual effort.

  1. Get cybersecurity insurance

You can also get cybersecurity insurance as a preventive measure. Since 95% of cybersecurity issues are caused by human error, this insurance policy is a must for any business. No matter how robust and effective your security systems and applications are, it only takes one small human error to leave your data vulnerable to attack.

Preventing cyberattacks is critical

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As discussed earlier, certain cyberattacks can actually damage your hardware. For example, if you have several IoT devices that are still using the manufacturer’s password, those devices might get bricked by malware like BrickerBot. Bricking is unrecoverable. Once a device is attacked, it can’t be fixed; the damage is permanent.

The only way to prevent your devices from getting bricked is to change the default password. This should be included in your preventive maintenance plan and immediately executed when you get any new device.

Preventive maintenance will keep your tech devices healthy

Whether you’re manually scheduling routine maintenance or setting up automated sensors to schedule it for you, preventive maintenance is the key to keeping your tech equipment working. If you haven’t already developed a maintenance plan for all of your devices, it’s worth the time and effort.

In the end, it could save you time, frustration, and most of all, money.