Can You Trust the Internet for Critical Applications

by Jeff Brodie

There has been a growing trend toward the reduction of operational computing costs in small and medium sized businesses for the last 15 years. Drops in hardware and software costs have fueled this reduction. Enterprise computing has come down to the smallest of enterprises. The low cost and easy access to high speed internet has accelerated thegrowth of iternet applications. Both of these trends have lowered costs.

Today the internet is relied on for every type of business transaction that you can think of through to credit processing between businesses and banking institutions. Yes the internet is an infrastructure that hold the veritable panacea of applications for one low price per month. I can run Virtual Private Network (VPNs) over the internet. I can run my corporate web site on the internet or access my CRM (Customer Relations Management) application. Backup is possible over the net for my mission critical sensitive data to offsite vaults to protect my business. My email communications, fax communications, voice communications and video communications are all running over the public internet. Post and courier services no longer carry messages and data to remote locations when we can simply transfer gigabytes of data across the public internet.

The internet provides immense opportunity, security not withstanding. With the cost of entry being small the growth of internet interaction has accelerated between individuals either through instant messaging or socialnetworking. Indeed a number of subscribers of Skype are making free net calls al over the world.

The challenge in running your business or mission critical applications is the fact that all internet connections are created equally. One can have the problem of old cabling and underground cable for the last mile to your operation. In this area all providers are not created equally or over the same time frame. It is wise to diversify your last mile connections to give your much more reliability and protection.

fYou are at risk for packet loss or diminished voice communications if you are running all your traffic over the same internet or voice over internet protocol connection. Web browsing,email,file transfer and backup applications are built to operate if the connection is mostly stable. The same cannot be said for voice which requires no packet loss or dropped connections. It is wise to consider alternatives such as point-to-point connections to give you maximum flexibility and quality of service.

All carriers are not the same, as well as all service and connections. Diversify your efforts by using the cost reductions technology has provided you to give you enhanced security and access.

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