Monthly Archives

June 2011

The Columbus Partnership and thinkCSC

By | Community Involvement

by Tom Hastings
Recently I was invited to attend a Columbus Partnership leadership retreat at Harvard. My experience was eye opening and encouraging! The Columbus Partnership is a civic organization of community leaders whose goal is to improve the economic vitality of Central Ohio. Although The Partnership has many guiding principles & initiatives, their current focus is with economic development in Central Ohio-which is being executed. through the Columbus 2020! Plan.

I had an amazing surprise right off the bat – I was invited to fly on Les Wexner’s private jet with Partnership members. I definitely count this as a top five business experience! We flew to Cambridge and met for two days with Harvard Fellows and Professors who talked about business development, leadership and many other important topics. The conference provided a great opportunity for me to grow professionally and personally.

My initial take away from the leadership retreat is the humility of this group of leaders. The prevailing attitude was, “We’re here to learn because we believe that leadership is a journey and not a destination.”   Their concise focus and mission is to develop Columbus & Central Ohio into the greatest community in the US to both work and live.

The Partnership retreat started with a roundtable discussion about the generations from Baby Boomers to Generation X and Generation Y and the differences on how people think based on their generations. We dovetailed into how each generation works and what they expect from the companies where they work. I found it fascinating: We are all the same and yet we are not-based on the generational timeframethat each of us was raised.  Generational leadership is blossoming in Columbus, and to have this conversation with Harvard Fellows about what makes each of us tick is applicable to Columbus and our workforce.

Three successful city leaders led another discussion on where government and business work well together and where they don’t. The Partnership can take this information and knowledge and apply it to Columbus. When city government and business community leaders work together, long-term goals can be realized more effectively.

The Partnership believes – and I agree – that community involvement is good business. The biggest gift you can give and the biggest difference you can make is your time. Whether it’s reading to a second grade class or meeting with juniors and seniors who are contemplating college, the time and experience you share with students is invaluable.

I learned much at this leadership retreat-the value of trans-generational communication, the importance of humility & the positive impact and outcomes of community involvement.

CSC is already drawing up a plan to participate in Columbus education programs and expects to become more proactive and impactful in the daily business objectives of Columbus – I hope that you do too!

Implement Security Before a Breach

By | Cloud Services | No Comments

security breachE-mail is a cornerstone of business communications, and obtaining your customer’s email address is a privilege that allows you to personalize your marketing efforts and learn details about your target market and gain insight that might otherwise be difficult to obtain. How do you assure your customers that their email address (and all the other information they share with you) is secure?

Right now, Sony is busy doing damage control over the security breach that occurred on the PlayStation 3 that let user information, including credit card numbers, escape their grasp. Last month, many financial institutions and retail stores were scrambling to reassure customers and apologize for a breach that occurred when their email company, Epsilon, was compromised and hundreds of thousands of names and email addresses were stolen. While only names and email addresses were accessed and not credit card information, there was a lot of placating to do to reassure uneasy customers. The month before that, admitted that their email provider had experienced months of irregular activity before revealing that their customers email addresses had been accessed and compromised.

As a business, ensuring the security of your internal email as well as the information you maintain about your customers has to be a primary concern – something you think about doing before there’s a risk for a breach. The question is, can you really create an environment that provides you with the security you need to offer the reassurance your customers and your investors want? It’s a matter of choosing the right hosted e-mail service that provides you the best possible security.

Here at thinkCSC, we have biometric security in place that ensures that only certain people can access the data center and firewalls. We run regular backups, but our backups are completely encrypted, so even the information stored on our back up server is safe from harm. Even if someone were to break in and physically steal our servers, the thieves would not have access to anything because all of the information on it is encrypted. We’ve literally locked out the hackers from the get-go.

We can actually run a piece of software from your location that encrypts your data before it is sent over the internet. When it gets to our site, even we can’t access it unless we have that encryption password. Most of the time, we are taking care of your whole network environment, so we will be the ones managing that password, and we have layers of security protocols in place that keep you protected. But we can also provide you with complete control, and can set it up so you’re the only who has the password.

The choice is simple: you’re either aggressively protecting your customer’s information by having the best email security available, or you’re preparing a letter to your customers to apologize to them after their information was stolen.