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3CX – Affordable Business VoIP Solution

Communication is an essential part of any business. With the rapid pace in which technology is developing at the moment, there are several different communication channels one can utilise. Nevertheless, the importance of the telephone is something which will never be overlooked and so it lies at the heart of a company’s communication.

3CX is a global leader in business VoIP and Unified Communications (UC) technology and is the preferred VoIP solutions for many businesses. It is trusted around the globe with more than 250,000 businesses, in more than 190 countries, across almost all industries. This is comes as no surprise as it offers their clients a highly affordable and easy to use system, meeting all communication standards and needs. Along with the reduced costs, 3CX is guaranteed to increase productivity and positive customer service feedback.

VoIP

It is no surprise that the industry has recognised 3CX as the best option for VoIP, and therefore, has awarded numerous awards each year. If you would like to see these prestigious awards, click here.

Additionally, there are a growing number of positive case studies from almost all areas of business, including leading brand names, and even governmental institutions. If you would like to read up on these case studies, click here.

Before we go deeper into what 3CX has to offer, let’s have a look at the most commonly asked questions on VoIP in general.

What is VoIP?
Voice over Internet Protocol, or Voice over IP, is a technology which converts speech into computer data packets so it can be transmitted over computer networks and the Internet. For years Skype have been providing software that utilises VoIP technology to enable users to communicate over the internet with phones and video calls. Use of these technologies has boomed since the advent and more widely take up of broadband solutions for home and business users.

Why Switch to VoIP
There are many reasons why you should switch your traditional business phone system to a VoIP system. The pure practicality of them is a major factor in making the switch. For example, VoIP allows you to make and receive calls, even when you are away from the office. Due to VoIP being internet based, it allows you to connect to any internet device and make those important calls over you VoIP telephone network. Costs of calls are also reduced do to it being based over the internet. It can even allow you to make cost effective long distance calls.

One of the major benefits of switching to a VoIP system is that you can easily add on extensions onto the system when new employees begin with your company. This means that it can dramatically reduce costs on the additional cabling that would be needed with a traditional system.

Installing a VoIP system can completely change the way all of your business calls are handled. VoIP allows you to set up call forwarding if there is no one to take a certain call. This is especially useful in a sales environment when telephone lines are busy. The caller can be diverted to a receptionist who will take down the customer’s information and schedule one of the sales team to call back at a specific time.

Another benefit of VoIP is that it makes it easy to collaborate with other colleagues in real time. It also gives the option of video conferencing with is useful when doing demonstrations.

One of the major key benefits of implementing a VoIP system is that it allows employees to be more productive by allowing them to make and receive calls anywhere, as long as there is a data connection that will enable them to make the call. This is just the tip of the iceberg in relation to the capabilities of installing a VoIP system. There are many more features that make them a no brainer. In addition to these benefits, VoIP systems are relatively cheap and very easy to use which is why thousands of companies worldwide are benefiting from this technology.

Advantages of VoIP
The principal benefit to VoIP is price.

VoIP services have the ability to offer discounted calls, as well as many common phone features at extremely low monthly prices. It is becoming clear that traditional phone companies cannot compete.

  • National  – 85%
  • International (Depends on destination) – Up to 80%
  • Cellular – 55%
  • Pure Per second billing vs Telkom charged in 30second increments

Location independence.
A 087 number is not tied to a specific area or line, you will appear to be a national company and you can keep the same number wherever you go. Because a VoIP system works primarily off of an Internet connection, the system isn’t able to distinguish how far away the recipient of the call is in relation to the caller, making each phone call standard and affordably priced. You do however have the option for other numbers such as 011, 012, 021, 031 etc – just enquire with your provider.

Using existing infrastructure
Voice traffic requires a minimum of Cat5e cabling, Layer 2 Network Hubs to maximise voice quality alongside data traffic on the same cable and preferably POE switches. One network point is shared between the Phone and the computer desktop / Notebook.

Focus on core business capabilities
By removing the worry and maintenance of phone systems, organisations can better focus on their core business capabilities. The management of these increasingly complex business communications systems is outsourced and handled offsite, so the telephony system continues to work while employees can get on with their jobs safe in the knowledge that the telephony system will just work, whenever they need it to, and they can access features like voice and video without having to know why and how they work

Now that we have a better understanding on what VoIP is, let’s get into further detail on 3CX Phone Systems.

3CX Phone System for Windows is an award-winning software-based IP PBX that replaces a proprietary hardware PABX. 3CX’s IP PBX has been developed specifically for Microsoft Windows and is based on the SIP standard, making it easier to manage and allowing you to use any SIP phone (software or hardware) from any vendor, VoIP service providers and VoIP gateways to connect traditional PSTN lines.

3CX Phone System is far less expensive than a traditional PBX and can reduce call costs substantially by using a VoIP service provider. Its web-based administration makes phone system management easy on location or remotely, making 90% of supports remotely saving on technician call out time.

3CX Phone System for Windows delivers Unified Communications technology by unifying voice mail, fax and email; as well as providing presence information.

With 3CX, employees can easily see the presence of other users and avoid unnecessarily making or transferring calls. Presence is displayed in any standards-based IP phone, as well as in the 3CX Phone user portal. Furthermore, 3CX unifies voice mail and faxes with email by delivering them to the user’s inbox.

3CX Phone System includes enterprise-level features as standard. Businesses do not need to pay extra for advanced features or add-ons, as these are incorporated in the software:

Conference Calling, Call Recording, Built-in fax server, Voice Mail, Central Phonebook, Digital receptionist (IVR), paging/ Intercom, Call Logging, Call Reporting, Call Forward on Busy or No Answer, Caller ID, Music on Hold, Follow Me / forward to Mobile and more.

Tele-work – Traditional telephony systems are highly desk bound, which in today’s world is no longer the ideal scenario. A 3CX VoIP solution gives businesses the ability to gain access to constant connectivity and productivity anywhere, anytime, whether employees are at their desks, in the boardroom or on the road. Workers can access the communication features of the VoIP system no matter where they are, improving productivity dramatically.

Porting your existing number, what does this mean?
Porting is the ability for customers to transfer their geographic telephone numbers (012, 011, 031) between Network Operators when they switch from one fixed line Network Operator to another. When you change networks but keep your number(s), you “port” your number(s) to another Network Operator.

Why would I port my number?
There are a number of reasons for porting your number to 3Gi VX network in particular:

  • Increase overall savings by routing all in and outbound calls via 3Gi VX network, without publishing a new number
  • Use an alternate telecoms provider other than the current network operator
  • Improved service compared to current network operator
  • One point of contact for voice and data requirements, no need to involve other network operators
  • Detailed and informative reporting on voice
  • Proactive monitoring on the voice service
  • Redundancy for voice

If I port my numbers, what numbers will reflect on the recipient phone?

  • By default, CLI will be activated to show the main number only or any DDI number
  • If it is a requirement, CLI can be blocked to show “Private Number”

Maintenance and support
By removing the worry and maintenance of phone systems, organisations can better focus on their core business capabilities.

3CX has a build in network monitoring system that enables us to set triggers against certain critical components of the solution. The system will send E-mail alerts to key people when these triggers are hit. B&D System Engineers would require remote access to your system where 95% of support on a 3CX solution can happen within minutes remotely.

3CX Delivers Unified Communications Out of the Box
Until very recently, voice and data communications in the business environment were not unified. Telephones were simple black boxes sitting on the users’ desks, connected via their own network and completely isolated from the company’s computer data network.

With the evolution of telephony toward IP (internet protocol), the integration of both communication worlds has become possible, allowing for companies to transform their business processes. This development of breaking down communication barriers and allowing people using different forms of communication, different devices, and different media to communicate to anyone, anywhere and at any time is known as Unified Communications.

3CX Phone System for Windows is a revolutionary IP PBX that delivers unified communications technology by merging voice and data networks, allowing businesses to simplify real time delivery of information and ensure ease of use. With 3CX IP PBX, collaboration between co-workers is made easier and cooperation with business partners and clients becomes more direct, even when the parties are not located in the same place.

Microsoft Outlook Integration
3CX Phone System includes full Microsoft Outlook CRM integration as standard with all commercial editions of version 10. To integrate Outlook with 3CX, you will need to use 3CX Phone, which comes bundled with 3CX Phone System 10.

This article demonstrates how to integrate Outlook using 3CX Phone, how to launch calls, what in-bound call pop-ups are and how to view all calls via Outlook’s journal.

The Benefits of Integrating Microsoft Outlook with 3CX Phone System

Integrating 3CX with Outlook provides the following features:

Click-To-Call 
To call a customer within Outlook, simply click on the customer contact. There’s no need to input the customer’s number into your phone, which saves you and your employees time.

Call Pop-ups 
In-bound calls will pop-up on your screen, letting you know which customer is calling. This saves your company time, as your customer’s details are instantly brought up on the screen. If you do not have the customer’s details stored within Outlook, you can create a new contact record.

Call Journals 
All in-bound, out-bound and missed calls are stored in the customer’s contact journal, allowing you to track the calls that were made to that customer.

For the PBX and the STD edition, you can download the 3CXPlugins. For the PRO edition you can download it within the management console.

3CX Pro Edition
The 3CX Phone System Pro edition provides professional call center features at an affordable price for any size of business. Boost your customer care agents’ productivity by reviewing real time queue and agent statistics. Supervisors can review the number of calls in a queue, how many calls have been answered or unanswered, average and longest wait-times and more.

Experience premium call Center features such as:

  • Advanced Contact Center Reporting
  • Advanced Queue Strategies and Real-Time Statistics
  • Call Back feature, customers can hang up after a configurable length of time and maintain their position in the queue.
  • Listen feature, supervisors have the ability to listen in to calls.
  • The Whisper feature allows the supervisor to speak directly to an agent, giving them vital feedback whilst on the call and without the customer hearing.
  • The Barge feature allows the supervisor to enter the call and assist the customer further.
  • Get instantly notified when callers have been in a queue beyond the set SLA time.
  • Review the time your staff logged in and out of queues.

The above features are just the tip of the ice-berg, with many more options available. With more detailed call center driven reports, you’re always up to date with how your customer care is developing.

3CX Pro Integration 
Integrate your favourite CRM system with ease as no plugins or manual configuration is required for any of the users. Staff can save time using click-to-call from customer records and customer call history. Management can view staff activity with detailed automatic inbound and outbound calls.

3CX Web Conferencing Made Easy
3CX’s easy to use video conferencing solution, 3CX WebMeeting, enables businesses to save time and money by hosting virtual meetings, whilst enjoying the benefits of face-to-face communication.

3CX WebMeeting can be used for a wide variety of everyday communication needs, from enriching a standard phone call with video, to visualising a sales pitch with a product presentation. Businesses can host webinars or online trainings using the Virtual Classroom features, or even provide technical support by taking control of a participant’s desktop to fix or show something on their computer.

Video conferences can easily be launched through the 3CXPhone client with a few mouse-clicks. Fully integrated with 3CX Phone System, 3CX WebMeeting is delivered as a hosted add-on, meaning that 3CX customers can easily enjoy the web conferencing feature without installing additional server hardware or requiring additional bandwidth. All 3CX customers are automatically licensed to hold video conferences with 3CX WebMeeting for a low six month or yearly cost, offering excellent value for money

Web Conferencing

3CX Hardware

To view our available SIP phone systems, please see here.

If you would like more information on 3CX or if you are ready to get your business VoIP solution, contact us on info@3gi.co.za.

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Ransomware – what to expect in 2020

Ransomware attacks continue to become more damaging and complex throughout recent years.  According to Cyber Security Ventures, a new organization will fall victim to ransomware every 11 seconds by 2021, with no signs of slowing down. While the primary targets are typically businesses, it is important for everyone to understand the dangers of malicious attacks. 

What is ransomware?

Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts a user’s files, preventing them from accessing their data or system. The attacker will then use the encrypted files as a means to solicit money from you, in order for you to regain access to the data. Ransomware enters your system through a corrupted file or link, typically through an email. Victims are then given instructions on how to pay the attackers, and this is commonly done via cryptocurrency – namely Bitcoin. The cost per ransom depends on the cybercriminal and the amount of data that is held ransom.

While attacking your personal computer may be the prime goal, the targeting of mobile devices is increasing each month.

Below are some frightening statistics of ransomware from last year:

  • 1 in 10 URL’s are malicious
  • Ransomware attacks have increased by 97% in the past two years
  • 40% of ransomware victims end up paying the amount requested
  • Over 98% of ransomware payments are done in Bitcoin
  • Ransomware costs business over R115 billion in the past year
  • The average costs of ransomware attacks are R1 632 567
  • Ransomware makes up of 56% of malware attacks
  • The global spending on cybersecurity is over $14 billion


There are many different types of ransomware out there, but most fall into the below 3 categories, ranging from annoying to company destroying:

Scareware

Malicious software designed to trick users into believing that they need to buy or download unwanted software through scare tactics such as the perception of a threat on your pc. Most people have experienced scareware at a point during their online activities as it typically comes in the form of a pop-up. The best course of action is to ignore the pop-up, especially since you should already have reputable security software installed.

Screen Lockers

As the name suggests, this ransomware typically locks your screen on your computer while displaying a message designed to scare and threaten you. The most common example of this is users getting a pop-up window telling them they have been involved in illegal activities and claiming to be from a legit legal department. Screen lockers are less common these days but do still affect a number of users each year.

Encryptors

The most common and threatening form of ransomware. As explained above, encrypting ransomware takes your data, encrypts it so that you do not have access to it anymore and forces you to pay in order to decrypt. This method is the most dangerous because once the attackers have your files, there is nothing that you or your security software can do to regain access. Even upon payment, there is no guarantee that the cybercriminals will release your data.

What can you do to stay safe?

Here are some tips that everyone should know:

Never open email attachments from an untrusted source.

Many ransomware attacks happen through email attachments as attackers will disguise the malware as financial or important documents. Always double-check with the sender of the email, if you are unsure.

Never open email attachments from an untrusted source.

Internet security software and anti-virus programs play a huge role in helping you divert these attacks from your personal computer and network. Make sure to always keep them updated with the latest patches.

Do not trust every link.

It is very important to be wary of random links and URLs sent your way. Just like the email attachments, if you do not know or trust the source then it’s always better to verify with the sender and avoid opening anything.

Back up, back up and back up!

Always try to have your latest work and data backed up. Since 100% is almost impossible, the best course is to regularly back and save as you never know when an attack will come.

To conclude, it is of utmost importance to protect yourself, your business and your loved ones from cybercrime.

The best tool is always awareness and educating yourself and those around you. If you would like more tips and recommendations on keeping yourself, as well as your business, safe from cybercriminals, read our previous blog on how you can protect your business from cybercrime.

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Protecting Your Business From Cybercrime

Last year, we published a blog on basic security precautions and how to keep thieves and hackers at bay. The mentioned blog was targeted at individuals and the general public, with the primary message of prevention being worth much more than a cure. This year, the focus will be on businesses and how one can protect their data from cybercrime.

It’s important to note that while prevention is crucial and needed, 100% prevention is impossible and any company that claims otherwise is not being truthful.

Cybercrime is increasing at a drastic pace each day, and many businesses are struggling to handle it. Today, business owners have more reason to fear hackers and cyber criminals than burglars that come to your store. The loss of your data and sensitive information can cause irreversible damage compared to the loss of property. While many insurance companies do cover cybercrime and intellectual property, it is difficult to gain trust and reputation back from such an incident.  

A common mistake with small to medium business owners are thinking that they are too small to be targeted, which leads to less effort being put towards protecting themselves. According to Keeper Security’s 2019 SMB Cyberthreat Study, 66% of business leaders at SMB’s don’t believe that they will be affected by cybercrime. For this reason, small businesses are a prime target for attackers.

Here are some interesting statistics on cybercrime from last year:

  • Ransomware attacks on businesses occur every 14 seconds in 2019.
  • Cybercrime will cost up to $6 trillion annually by 2021.
  • 43% of cybersecurity attacks are directed at small businesses.
  • Hacker attacks occur every 39 seconds.
  • Public administration organizations in 2019 received one malicious email for every 302 emails.
  • IoT devices can be hacked within the first 5 minutes of connecting to the internet

While the above may seem alarming, there are many ways that you can protect yourself from attacks. Below are 7 tips that every business owner and leader should be aware of:

  1. Software updates
    Attackers often look for exploits within your system and software. It is imperative to constantly keep abreast with the latest patches and updates. Make sure that all the software used in your company is on the latest version.
  2. Train and educate your staff
    Human error plays a large part in cybersecurity. Over 90% of security breaches happen through an employee who unintentionally gives access and information to an attacker. You can be up to date with the latest security software and still be at risk of an attack. For this reason, it is important to train your staff about cybercrime and security, especially when it comes to phishing emails and weak passwords.
  3. Encryption is key!
    Data is typically a company’s most valuable asset and protecting it should be as important as protecting your physical offices. It is advisable to keep your data as safe as possible within your system. This can be done by dividing it into segments, adding extra layers of security and encrypting it so that even if it is accessed, it cannot be used as effectively. A common mistake is storing the keys that you use to encrypt your data in the same place as where the data is kept, this should never be done as it renders the encryption useless. Lastly, remember to constantly back up your data as you never know when you will need to restore something.
  4. Third-party risk
    If your business has to work with a vendor or a third-party, make sure to always assess the risk involved. This can be done by adding strict criteria to the vetting process and paying attention to their security defenses. Be sure to ask important questions about how they handle and protect their own data, as well as your own. Remember, you are only as strong as your weakest link.
  5. Utilizing a virtual private network (VPN)
    A VPN will help you create a secure connection to your business servers, and prevents people on the internet from intercepting your data. In the modern age, every employee will have their smartphone or laptop at work with many having direct access to the work server. Creating a safe network with a VPN will help you deter hackers and cybercriminals from seeing your unencrypted data in the first place.
  6. Manage user privileges and set up limitations
    Every business needs to know which employees have access to what, in terms of rights and privileges within the organization and network. High-level system privileges should be meticulously monitored and controlled. The best measure is to work by least privilege, this is the bare minimum access a person needs to function in their role.  Additionally, employees should not be able to install software without authorization and approval from a system manager.
  7. Threat monitoring
    It is advisable to set up a complete 24-hour monitoring system, that can help you notice suspicious activity and even attacks before they can escalate and cause further damage. Utilize popular software to monitor or consult a third-party specialist such as a Security Operations Centre.  A common saying is “Prevention is ideal, but detection is a must”.

Ransomware
One of the most common and dangerous forms of cybercrime, where attackers encrypt your data and files and demand payment in order to decrypt and release the data back to you. Each year, more and more business fall victim to ransomware attacks. Last year, a staggering R115 billion was spent by SME’s and large corporations to ransomware attacks. For more information and tips on how to avoid ransomware, read our latest blog on the matter.

To conclude, use the above tips and recommendations to keep your business and data safe from a cyber-attack. The solutions will depend on certain factors of your business, such as the field of work, number of employees, location of the business, etc. Utilize and adapt the cyber defense tactics to suit your business needs and prepare yourself for the future.

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Cell C Termination Notice

CellC to cancel fixed LTE

We would like to inform you of the latest LTE update from Cell C.

Network provider, Cell C, has recently announced the termination of their fixed LTE services, which will be affecting all resellers such as ourselves. Cell C will be terminating all 100GB and 200GB Fixed LTE services at the end of November 2019.

In light of this announcement, and without the need to terminate your services, we will be transferring all of our LTE clients to super-fast MTN LTE SIM packages. 

Clients using the 20GB and 50GB Cell C packages will be offered the same deal when their current service is terminated, and will remain active until March 2020.

Considering the above, we believe now is the perfect time to assess your satisfaction with your LTE services and if you would like to upgrade or top up.

For more information on LTE, please click here or contact our support team at support@3gi.co.za

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10 Ways to keep working during load shedding

Loadshedding

South Africans recently experienced another round of national rotational power outage and it definitely won’t be the last time. The timing couldn’t have been worse as Matric students were writing their exams and the Rugby World Cup was on. Worst of all, the many people who work from home, and rely on a constant internet connection, could not do their jobs when needed. While some people made a plan by getting a generator or by going to a different area, many did not have that option.

For these reasons, it is important to be prepared and plan for the worst situation. The situation depends on the stage of load-shedding you are in:  

STAGE 1

Requires the least amount of load-shedding (up to 1,000 MW) and can be implemented three times over a four-day period for two hours at a time, or three times over an eight-day period for 4 hours at a time.

STAGE 2

Will double the frequency of Stage 1, which means you will be scheduled for load-shedding six times over a four-day period for two hours at a time, or six times over an eight-day period for four hours at a time.

STAGE 3

Will increase the frequency of Stage 2 by 50 percent, which means you will be scheduled for load-shedding nine times over a four-day period for two hours at a time, or nine times over an eight-day period for four hours at a time.

STAGE 4

Will double the frequency of Stage 2, which means you will be scheduled for load-shedding 12 times over a four-day period for two hours at a time, or 12 times over an eight-day period for four hours at a time.

Below are 10 ways that you can continue working during a power outage/load shedding: 

1. UPS

Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) provides emergency power to your computer or router when your main power fails. The UPS will automatically switch over without interruption and can give you additional hours of power, depending on the size and output of the UPS. The smaller UPS, for routers, has been gaining popularity as the prices are very competitive, starting from R299. See the different options here: https://www.3gi.co.za/hardware/

2. Notebooks + Laptops

Self-explanatory. Notebooks and laptops are portable computers that run on their own power supply, just remember to keep them charged!

3. LTE

Long Term Evolution (LTE) provides a fast, mobile internet connection via a 4G wireless communications standard. Its about 10 times faster than 3G and can be carried with you. Coupled with a laptop and UPS system, you can stay connected and keep working. LTE prices are getting cheaper by the month and can start anywhere from R99. To view LTE packages, visit our website here: https://www.3gi.co.za/lte/

4. Get the EskomSePush App

The most reliable mobile application for load shedding schedules. Its completely free and gives you enough time to make alternative plans.  Simply add your area and you will get notifications whenever you are affected.

Website link: https://sepush.co.za
Playstore: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ashwhale.sepush.eskom 
App Store: https://apps.apple.com/za/app/eskomsepush/id968648379

5. Note down Wifi hotspots near you 

It could be a café, restaurant or a public place such as a library and community center. Do some research and visit these areas to see what works best for you, in terms of comfort and accessibility.

6. Go green!

Invest in a solar panel kit, one that aligns with your budget, and use it to keep the lights and important devices on during a night time outage. 

7. Keep your refreshments available

Don’t miss out on your coffee break because of load shedding. Simply keep a thermostat coffee mug or container filled with hot water, just before the power cuts, and enjoy your tea or coffee break from work. The same goes for gas stovetops so that you don’t go hungry while working.

8. Keep your work backed up online

Regardless of load shedding, it's always advisable to keep your work backed on an online server. Cloud and file hosting services are a must-have in the modern age as you don’t have to worry about server downtime and losing your work. 

Our recommendations:
Egynte: https://www.3gi.co.za/cloud-document-hosting/
OneDrive: https://www.3gi.co.za/office-365/

Read our blog on file sharing and internet security here: https://www.3gi.co.za/egnyte-file-sharing-for-business/

9. Keep your devices charged!

Always try keep your electronic devices fully charged. A charged laptop or tablet, that you use for work, will typically cover the entire duration of load-shedding, especially with a handy UPS system as mentioned above.

10. Surge protection

Load shedding can easily damage your equipment with electric surges. It is always a good idea to install surge protection on your device, distribution board or specific power outlets that you use for work. 

We can’t always control what happens in situations like this, such as load shedding, but we can definitely prepare for it and make it easier for us. I hope this blog helps you during these dark times. If you would like to read more of our blogs, kindly visit our website here: https://www.3gi.co.za/blog/

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Egnyte – the no.1 file sharing platform for businesses

Egnyte

Internet security is a main component of any modern business, regardless of size. Working online holds many cyber risks and with technology improving every day it is crucial to provide and work in a safe workplace. For this reason, secure tools and applications are used by businesses and employers to keep a safe environment. Engyte, a recognized partner for secure and reliable file sharing, is currently the top-rated platform for secure file sharing and is used by many of the prominent brands around the world.

Egnyte is one of the few highly secure file-sharing platforms that was built specifically for businesses and boasts very high standards in terms of reliability and performance. Users can safely store and share files on the cloud or on-premise while having the ability to sync between the two, with no restrictions on locations and devices.

The most important part of any file sharing platform is security and Egnyte knows just how to do it. By enforcing strict security policies and meeting global industry data regulations and standards, it is no wonder why Egynte is known for their stringent security procedures. Your data and intellectual property are completely protected and you have full data visibility. Egnyte is HIPPA and GDPR compliant and can completely scan your documents for sensitive information. Additionally, using admin privileges, a superior can invoke higher level security policies and permissions to further protect your files and employees. External file sharing can also be safely done through content permissions.

A breach within your company can have more problems than just the risk of financial loss. Below is a part of an infographic from Egnyte depicting the additional risks involved:

The Impact of a Breach
Source: https://www.egnyte.com/corp/infographics/the-rise-of-insider-threats.html

The following key features are experienced when using Egnyte:

Share and Collaborate

Share and discuss important documents and files through secure email links, allowing team members and business partners to safely access, download and edit files.

Retrieve vital information

Using the Egnyte Upload Link feature, users can safely request private and important information from various parties. Uploaded files are organized into secure subfolders, therefore, keeping the information confidential and private.

Any device and location

Collaborate from anywhere and from any device with the Egnyte mobile application. Users can access and share files from an Android, iOS or Windows device, regardless of location. This feature is perfect for users who often travel while dealing with sensitive information.

Secure files

The Egnyte Storage Connect features allows users to remotely access, edit and share on-premise sensitive information with password protected links. This means that no file goes through the cloud and remains in the same place.

Monitor and control

Managers and administrators have the ability to optimize and control procedures for their team, allowing them to gain insights and analytics on company usage patterns. This features allows admins to have control over how company employees share and access files.

Integration

Egnyte allows you to integrate many popular tools and apps from trusted partners such as Microsoft (Office 365 + Teams), Google Apps, DocuSign, Salesforce and more. All integrations and add-ons can be found here: https://us-partner-integrations.egnyte.com/appstore/#/apps

Activity Stream

This features keeps you up to date on what is happening within the folders you are working on. Activity stream updates on any recent file actions such as comments, uploads and changes.

Premium Support

New and existing users can explore multiple sources of useful information to help better understand and use Egnyte. Utilize the many resources such as live training, infographics, demos, webinars, whitepapers, e-books and more. Immerse yourself even further by joining the Egnyte Community and University!

As many of us are aware, data is quickly becoming the worlds most valuable commodity and, therefore, the security of data is paramount in virtually any business. If you are a business owner then you should be asking yourself if you have done enough to protect your data and intellectual property.

If you are interested or would like more information, contact us on 012 663 2500 or support@3gi.co.za

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What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is a cloud-based collaboration tool that holds a number of uses for your work or business. As an integral part of the Office 365 suite, Teams offers many unique features and applications designed to help your business and workforce communicate efficiently and with increased productivity. The capabilities of Microsoft Teams keep increasing with each year as more features are implemented.

Communication is key in any business and Microsoft Teams focuses on this by streamlining teamwork in any workplace, either with remote teams or within an organization. Microsoft Teams utilizes the latest technologies and internet applications to stay up to date with the modern way of working, completely unifying all areas of successful business practices in one online platform.

Teams can either be used as a free stand-alone application or as a fully integrated Office 365 hub, making use of the many Office suite applications.  As a stand-alone application with modern communication features, Teams gives you necessities such as business chat, video calling and meetings, cloud storage and screen sharing.

Benefits of using Microsoft Teams


The following advantages come with the use of Microsoft Teams in your business:

– Collaboration

Streamline collaboration with easier work processes by finding out what works best for your team. Using the right Microsoft Teams collaboration tools and applications creates a unified workplace, resulting in work being done faster and easier.

– Office 365 Integration

Most businesses are already familiar with the full Office 365 tools such as Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel. Utilize the variety of services available with the applications that your team already uses.

Microsoft Team offers many features and possibilities through third party applications. Integration between Teams and other applications does not only apply to Office 365 suites. As of October 2019, there are 224 possible app integrations, bots and applications available with more being developed at a very fast rate. Users can explore all the applications from a single portal and choose which would suit their business needs, either through free or paid options.  

– Communication

Communication goes hand in hand with collaboration and Teams helps you combine the two to its best ability. Enjoy a variety of communication features such as voice calling, video conferencing, messaging, mentions and more.

The following areas of communication are enhanced by utilizing the appropriate Microsoft Teams features:

Meetings

Online meetings
Live broadcasts
Meeting spaces
Cloud video interoperability
Audio conferencing
Recording

Calling

Phone System
Direct Routing
Calling Plan
Team devices

Devices

Work faster and connect from anywhere
Team rooms
Desk and conference phones
Peripherals

– Productivity 

Save precious time by customizing your workplace and having every tool at your fingertips.

Microsoft Teams Research
Image source: Forrester study: The Total Economic Impact™ Of Microsoft Teams.

How to use Microsoft Teams?

The following video is a tutorial on how to use Microsoft Teams: Watch Video

Office 365 Business Premium

  • Chat-based collaboration

    - Unlimited messages and search
    - Guest access
    - 300 Max number of users
    - Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote Online Apps in Teams (with desktop versions)
    - Exchange email hosting and custom email domain (Plus web and desktop versions of Outlook)
    - OneDrive, SharePoint, Planner, Yammer, and more Office 365 services
    - 140+ integrated apps and services
    - 1 TB per organization plus 10 GB per license
    - 1:1 and group online audio and video calls
    - Channel meetings
    - Screen sharing
    - Scheduled meetings
    - Meeting recording—available with Microsoft Stream
    - Audio conferencing (add-on)
    - Availability in more than 150 markets and 44 languages

  • Security and Compliance

    - Region-based data residency
    - Data encryption at rest and in transit
    - Enforced multi-factor authentication for all users
    - Single sign-on to all business apps and services
    - Advanced auditing and reporting

  • Administration and Support

    - Admin tools for managing users and apps
    - Usage reporting for Office 365 services
    - 99.9% financially-backed SLA uptime
    - Configurable user settings and policies

Office 365 Business Essentials

Microsoft Office 365 Business Essentials has the same features as Microsoft Office 365 Business Premium with the only difference of Essentials using web versions of the Office applications – Word, PowerPoint, Excel and Outlook instead of the desktop versions.

If you are interested or would like more information, contact us on 012 663 2500 or support@3gi.co.za

Here are our top 10 picks for needed Microsoft Team integrations:

(Please note each business might have unique and different needs and certain applications might not apply to them.)

Slack

Slack

Simplify everyday tasks like checking your calendar, collaborating on files, letting teammates know you’re busy and more. Teamwork in Slack happens in channels — a single place for messaging, tools and files — helping everyone save time and collaborate together.

Zoom

Zoom

Zoom is currently seen as the leader in enterprise video communications, offering you the opportunity to connect with people outside of Microsoft Teams. Zoom boasts an easy to use interface for video and audio conferencing, helping you set up a secure business video call in seconds.

Mindmeister

MindMeister

MindMeister is an online mind mapping tool that helps team members develop and share ideas in a visual platform. Use the mind map editor to take down and compare notes, brainstorm and plan your projects from a single shared page. With over 10 million users, it is no surprise that MindMeister is on our recommendation list.

Attendancebot

AttendanceBot

Many employers fear the adoption of a digital workplace will create opportunities for team members to slack off. AttendanceBot covers this by making it really easy to clock in/out and by getting organized timesheet and payroll reports

SoapBox

SoapBox

SoapBox is the ideal app for managers, designed to improve communication in terms of one-on-ones, team meetings and discussions. Use SoapBox to manage meetings and discussions by setting agendas and getting feedback from the team, to better see where room for improvement lies.

DocuSign

DocuSign

Save time by signing or sending documents for eSignature without ever leaving Microsoft Word!

Jira

Jira

Designed for software teams, Jira is the leading agile software development tool that allows bug tracking, issue tracking and agile project management. Jira is completely customizable which allows you to set it up to your teams need.

Lucidchart

Lucidchart

Lucidchart is a visual workspace that combines diagramming, data visualization, and collaboration through working together in real time and clear information sharing.

Salesforce

Salesforce Lightning

If your company is already using Salesforce, the Salesforce Lightning integration is one of the simplifies ways to boost productivity and efficiency of Outlook in Office 365. It enables you to view all accounts, custom objects, contacts, opportunities, and leads associated with appointments and emails without ever having to close Outlook.

GitHub

GitHub

GitHub is a perfect tool for developers to work together on projects by sharing code for collaboration between different developers or teams, allowing developer teams to work together from anywhere in the world.

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3CX – increase productivity, communication, and efficiency!

Companies are always looking for new ways to help their employees become more productive and efficient, and sophisticated technologies play a crucial enablement role in this process. Hosted 3CX phone system is just one such tool that helps businesses revamp their communications.

3CX is an open standards IP PBX that assists any business or industry, no matter the size, on all their communication needs.  3CX completely helps you manage and maintain your PBX systems enabling you to effectively and easily boost your team’s productivity and customer control, all at a reduced cost.

With over 250 000 instillations and over 10 000 partners, it is no surprise that many businesses are switching over 3CX.

Below are the top 8 benefits of incorporating 3CX into your business:

Stay on call
Working with a hosted 3CX phone system means that you no longer have to rely on copper wire to conduct phone conversations. Hosted systems transfer data by digitizing it before sending it down the same cables that are used for broadband. By running all your calls through an online platform, you can establish sound and reliable systems that are impervious to bad weather or broken phone lines.

A faulty phone system can wreak havoc on your ability to deliver customer service. Instead of jeopardizing your company’s reputation, why not implement a phone system that won’t leave you hanging?

Easy to manage
You can control your hosted phone systems through a simple web portal. This allows you to configure your ICT needs much more easily than traditional hard-wired infrastructure and change as you grow. You can also easily access other features such as billing information and data usage. The ICT advantages don’t stop there, software updates can be installed automatically, and new features can be ready to be implemented immediately.

Remote workers will thank you
Hosted 3CX phone system allows remote employees to securely access the company’s communication system through an app on their mobile device or software on their laptop. Calls can be routed from their desk phones to another device, so they aren’t desk-bound for fear of missing calls. If employees are spread across the country or the globe, they can stay connected to each other and your customers.

Hosted 3CX Phone system with 3Gi Internet Services
3CX communication solutions offer cost-effective workforce connections and will integrate seamlessly with other systems such as CRM, collaboration within Office 365 networks, instant messaging, web conferencing, WordPress Integration – the ability to chat & talk with website visitors, voicemail to email and more.

Click to call from any browser or CRM
With the 3CX Click to Call extension for Chrome and Firefox, you can make calls directly from any browser or CRM via the 3CX Web Client. Make outbound calls with a single click of the mouse and eliminate the need to copy and paste numbers.

Integrated, Free Video Conferencing
Video conferencing has become an essential part of daily business communications. Whether it’s to catch up with a team member who is traveling or to give a sales presentation, no one can argue that it’s become a part of the norm. 3CX’s integrated video conferencing is easy to use and enables businesses to save time and money by hosting virtual meetings, whilst enjoying the benefits of face-to-face communication.

Video conferences can be easily launched through the 3CX web client with a few mouse-clicks and can be used for a wide variety of everyday communication needs to boost productivity and efficiency.

Hassle-Free Video Conferencing with WebRTC
3CX harnesses Google’s revolutionary WebRTC technology, which enables high-quality video and voice communications to take place through your Web browser. Participants will be able to seamlessly join meetings without the need to download any additional software or plug-ins, enabling a better user experience for your partners, customers and employees.

Advanced Features for Ultimate Collaboration
3CX’s video conferencing is feature-rich and user-friendly. Participants can enjoy video communication without the need to log in anywhere and easy setup of ad-hoc meetings makes launching conferences ever so easy for both participants and organizers – employees can even use their mobile devices to join meetings.

If you are interested in integrating 3CX into your business, please visit  https://www.3gi.co.za/get-3cx/

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What to watch on Netflix South Africa – September 2019

Since the last blog post, Netflix has been busy pumping out some really interesting titles and there is simply not enough time to try out everything. Reading critics reviews and website scoring is clearly not the way to go, as seen from Dave Chappelle’s latest stand up special, Sticks & Stones, where Rotten Tomatoes displayed the critic review score of 0% and a user review score of 99%. Therefore, coming from humble users such as yourselves, here are our latest top 10 recommendations, in no particular order:

1. Stranger Things | IMDB 8.8

2. Better Call Saul | IMDB 8.7

3. Mindhunters | IMDB 8.6

3. Dark | IMDB 8.7

4. Ozark | IMDB 8.3

5.  Money Heist | IMDB 8.6 

6.  The Spy | IMDB 7.7

7. Dave Chappelle: Sticks & Stones | IMDB 8.6

8. 13 Reasons Why | IMDB 7.8

9. Sex Education | IMDB 8.3

10. Glow | IMDB 8.0

This above list has many different genres to suit your mood, all binge-worthy and highly acclaimed. The 3Gi team has successfully tested all of the above mentions and will be spending the next few weekends at home! Watch out for our next update, coming soon.

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Old pictures of Pretoria compared to today

Church Square (then – 1920s)
Church Square (now)

Stabze Bopape. formerly known as Church Street (then – 1880)
Stabze Bopape. formerly known as Church Street (now)

Pretoria Central (then – 1940s)
Pretoria Central (now)

Union Building (1920s)
Union Building (now)

Arts Building at the University of Pretoria (1890s)
Arts Building at the University of Pretoria (now)

Voortrekker Monument (then – 1940s)
Voortrekker Monument (now)

I hope you enjoyed the blast from the past and that you think of these images next time you visit one of the above locations. I will be doing a Cape Town and Johannesburg version this year (2019), stay tuned by following the 3Gi social media pages:

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/3Giinternetservices/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/3giServices

Alternatively, visit the website here: https://www.3gi.co.za/