How Velocity Tech Solutions Saved Spring Break

Spring Break is upon us. Each year around this time, I think about one of my favorite Velocity Tech Solutions “saving asses among the masses” stories.

This is Minnesota and spring break can feel more like winter solstice, so when families can actually get a room at the Water Park of America they feel like a Florida vacation without being in Florida. That is a BIG Deal!


I was the lucky one to carry the emergency phone that night. I happened to be at a social event with our President, Kay Winchell, which was a bonus for the customer since she is a network engineer in disguise.

I answered the phone at 10pm and I heard panic. A server was down and so was the Water Park of America! Kids were crying, parents were screaming, parents were weeping. It was pandemonium! The tech from Water Park of America was beside himself. He had spent the entire day dealing with another vendor and paid for parts to be couriered across the Twin Cities multiple times and the server was still not repaired. That vendor had not asked questions and just kept throwing parts at him without helping troubleshoot the issue.


We met him at the office and he was so exhausted he couldn’t remember the model of the server . We walked around our warehouse for an hour (It’s a big warehouse!) and he finally saw the server that was the same model.

Kay grabbed the server, I grabbed the parts and we went through creating his error. Within minutes we discovered the issue.

The tech rushed back with the cache module that was needed and within an hour the Water Park of America  was up and running and our customer was ecstatic! (And so were the parents that promised the kids the water slide that was as dry as a bone all day long!) We helped the tech become the Hero instead of the Villain. The only thing that could have gone better was if he had found us much earlier!

That night, it was decided, we don’t just sell servers, we provide the “WOW” experience and it became our #1 core value.




Cyber Security- The Ostrich Approach is hurting the world


Image result for ostrich with head in sand



How important is cyber security to you?  You folks in education, and healthcare how about you? IT professionals, I know you have your pretty little firewalls, but seriously does your software update every minute so it catches every threat out there? Perhaps its “good enough”  It’s 2018, in case anyone hasn’t noticed and Cyber Security continues to be a huge issue for every business that has a network. That means EVERY business out there is subject to these threats.

In 2017, hackers stole $172 BILLION dollars from people all over the world according to an article from MIT Technology Review. $19.4 Billion happened in the United States. I am willing to bet that in each of these threats, those pretty little firewalls were up and running and all the lights were flashing that all was good in the world.
The forecast for 2018 isn’t any better. According to Forbes, education and healthcare are going to be big targets this year. Educational institutions lack resources to defend their endpoints. school systems are a lightly secure network of endpoints that contain personally identifiable information on students, parents and staff.
The increased use of IoT in the healthcare industry will also create data security concerns in 2018. In the era of connected devices, the healthcare industry needs to make patient security a top priority by increasing security protocols. To combat this, businesses should look to third-party security providers to encrypt these devices and monitor with live ethical hackers that can actually see an intrusion and catch it BEFORE it infects  your network or brings it down.
So stopping it BEFORE devistation?? What a novel idea.
So why are we taking the Ostrich approach again? The pretty little firewalls we have so much faith in are obviously not getting the job done. Oh, oh wait it’s too expensive, right? Once a school is hacked and the child’s data is in the wrong hands, have you figure out what that childs value is? How much money does it cost you to be down?
Sometimes its expensive to be cheap.  For a few hundred, maybe a few thousand dollars,  you can stop adding to the billions lost. Get a pen test  or have your network monitored.
Anne Tarantino


Hey You Get Outta that Cloud- or at least ask some questions before you get hung up there

For those of you that went to the cloud, or are thinking of moving to the cloud, can you answer with certainty who owns your data? This isn’t a new question or new controversy, as big data gets bigger, as more data is stored in the cloud, as  more devices hit the market and as more hackers are getting into our banks and government servers  do you own your data and if not who does and where is it?

Over the past few years there has been controversy over the “Cloud” and who owns what data where.   For those willing to play “who’s data is it anyway”, the legal issues aren’t getting any clearer.

As a consumer user of the cloud -posting my so important pictures of my yellow lab Riley on Facebook

rileyhead Riley, the best dog ever!

or using my Gmail account or the obsessive habit of using my Amazon prime account so I can feel like a kid at Christmas every day seeing a box on my doorstep, I fail to realize the pain of this issue: probably because it’s so convenient. I then suggested the cloud as a solution for one of my customers.  That’s when it hit me.

As someone working in technology (ok I’m a sales geek) I need to really think about how real and complicated this issue is to better serve my customers by educating them in the pros and cons of using the cloud

For those thinking of going to the cloud, it seems like such and easy thing. So you call Mr. Cloud company and say “Mr. Cloud company, I want to put my data way up in the cloud so no one can get it.” Mr. Cloud says ok “we’ll store your data and all will be safe in the world forever and ever amen.” You sign the contract there, you’re in the cloud. You’re happy your data is safe, no one will ever get your data, you will have access to it at all times and you don’t have to hire and pay someone to support it.

What you don’t ask Mr.  Cloud company is “what is the trail of your cloud”? Why would you ask that? What is the “trail of the cloud” Clouds don’t trail! Have you ever looked up and seen those long skinny clouds? Yeah, they trail.


In some cloud companies you give your data to a cloud provider who then outsources its work to another storage or process provider, who’s responsible if your information is lost or damaged? What if that outsourcing happens in another country? So if data is created in one country, but then stored in another the legal rules that apply become blurred. YIKES!!

Now you worry about your data. You call an attorney. What area of law is this? Cloud law isn’t a thing……yet. There are 3 main areas of law (and maybe more) that cover this: Copyright, Confidentiality and Contract. So do you need 3 attorneys? Also if your data is stored or outsourced in another country do their rules apply?



In speaking with a customer of mine from a University, he mentioned real concern about security in regard to the cloud. He mentioned his concern regarding student personal information as well as student loan information. Once student loan information is breached now we have a tax payer issue, and as he put it, “now we have a federal issue”.

There are guidelines from PTAC – the US Department of Education’s Privacy technical assistance center. But it gets a little “cloudy” regarding the cloud.

What it boils down to is Data Mining or Big Data.  In the education world to use as an example; this is a huge no no as it violates the “no commercial use of student data” policy.  According to Education Weekly when the litigation started in 2014, consent was not given to scan or index emails under the Google for education platform.

This issue isn’t any clearer in 2016 as UC Berkeley has this lawsuit pending for the same thing, called. “UC Berkeley students sue Google Alleging their emails were illegally scanned”.

I have only discussed a bit of the issue, but how about your industry? How about your data? Think about what you personally put out there? Your buying habits, your search habits. What about when you are in crisis? Is that something we want out in the “cloud”?

Should you decide to go to the cloud, read your contracts, ask some questions. Make sure the provider can specify who will be responsible for the data should it be lost or stolen. There should also be a provision in that contract as to who is responsible if the cloud company goes bankrupt, or is purchased by another cloud company.

If you need some help to get started in this process, help is here just give us a call.