2013 – The year of unrealistic plans

Posted on Dec 18 2013 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on 2013 – The year of unrealistic plans

This year hasn’t been too shabby for the UK. We witnessed the proud moment when Andy Murray lifted the Wimbledon trophy in July and subsequently winning Sports Personality of the year. We also waited in anticipation as Prince George was presented to the world by William and Kate.

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Meanwhile in the UK comms industry, it seems the year has been full of the Government’s unrealistic plans. Here’s a little reminder of some of the key events.

The Snooper’s Charter

The draft Communications Data Bill, also known as the “snoopers’ charter” was first proposed by the Home Office back in June 2012. It was described as a ‘vital tool’ to help police and snoopers catch paedophiles, terrorists and other serious criminals.

The Bill, which expanded on the existing Internet snooping laws (RIPA), required ISPs to collate information by law on the activities of customers and store the information for up to a year. Authorisation to access this information was self-authorised by senior members of the police, intelligence agencies and the tax agency.

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How important is a network anyway?

Posted on Sep 05 2013 by Steve Lalonde | Comments Off on How important is a network anyway?

A customer once said to me (in quite colourful terms actually) that he couldn’t care less who owns the network, what technology it uses, where it is or how much it had cost to build-out, as long as it works. To most customers – and thus by default most resellers – that is fundamentally all that matters.

Steve Lalonde, Chief Technical Officer

Steve Lalonde, Chief Technical Officer

I’ve heard similar views expressed plenty of times and it’s easy to sympathise with this standpoint. From the end customer’s perspective, all that matters is that the service ‘does what it says on the tin’, as it were; that it delivers what it’s supposed to deliver. But to the partner, the network can make a distinct and vitally important difference.

The first and perhaps the biggest differentiator the network can give resellers is flexibility. Most service providers offer their partners a range of services, but they’re almost always quite tightly defined in terms of the bandwidth, usage allowances, thresholds, SLAs and other features. This is because the actual network belongs to someone else. If you wanted to tailor connectivity to suit a particular set of requirements, it might be possible, but there would almost certainly be limitations and restrictions on what you could do.

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ASA broadband advertising guidelines – any clearer now?

Posted on Mar 28 2013 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on ASA broadband advertising guidelines – any clearer now?

Last year in April the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) and CAP (Committee of Advertising Practice) released new guidelines governing the advertising of broadband speeds and ‘unlimited’ broadband packages.

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

In a previous article ASA broadband guidelines – What will it mean for resellers? we discussed the details of the guidelines, the likely impact on end users and for the industry and what they would entail for resellers. We came to the conclusion that although we recognised that the ASA and CAP were attempting to protect consumers and prevent them from being misled, the guidelines would cause further confusion and could potentially have a negative impact on the digital divide in the UK. We feared that these guidelines would put a lot of providers off advertising altogether and that this could lead to speed information being withdrawn completely. A year on we review the situation and see what the effect has been.

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Adopting cloud computing – what’s holding your customers back?

Posted on Jan 23 2013 by Guest | Comments Off on Adopting cloud computing – what’s holding your customers back?

There’s no denying that cloud computing is a profitable and rapidly growing market and one that is covered on almost a daily basis by the industry press. Entanet recently partnered with Outsourcery, a leading cloud computing provider, to ensure their high quality hosted services are backed up with reliable connectivity that’s fit for purpose, providing their channel of resellers with a complete business solution for customers adopting this popular new approach.

Claire Mitchell, Outsourcery

Claire Mitchell, Outsourcery

Yet, while we continue to see growth in this market, there are still many business customers that appear to be holding back from the obvious benefits that cloud computing can provide. In this guest blog from Claire Mitchell, Product Manager for Connectivity at Outsourcery, she describes why she thinks this is the case and how it can be overcome to encourage end user business customers to take the plunge into hosted services.

Is a lack of time a reasonable excuse?
Over the past few years there has been a sharp rise in the number of businesses adopting some aspect of cloud computing. Most businesses have initially adopted one or two cloud solutions and grown from there once they have gained confidence in their decision to adopt a cloud approach to their business. Our experience shows that once businesses learn more about the cloud solutions that are available to them and the benefits they bring, they are eager to adopt more. This brings with it profitable opportunities for our channel partners.

At Outsourcery companies usually approach our partners with one specific service in mind but are not always aware of the additional options open to businesses that have adopted or want to adopt a cloud approach.

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VoIP Fraud – Are you at risk?

Posted on Sep 26 2012 by Jon Farmer | Comments Off on VoIP Fraud – Are you at risk?
Categories : Featured, Security, VoIP

It’s no secret that VoIP fraud is a growing problem within the industry. It’s estimated that telecoms fraud can cost operators $40billion a year worldwide and IP based services contribute a significant proportion to that total. But as a VoIP reseller how can you protect yourselves and your customers from VoIP fraud?

Jon Farmer, Voice Technical Lead

Jon Farmer, Voice Technical Lead

In a recent interview with Comms Dealer magazine (August 2012 issue), FCS General Manager, Michael Eagle highlighted this issue and calls for every stage of the supply chain to become more vigilant against fraud. He states “The FCS view is that each member of the supply chain has responsibilities and an important part to play in preventing and dealing with fraud. Accordingly, FCS wants to establish clarity of responsibility and best practice at each level to prevent, restrict or mitigate the losses which would otherwise be suffered by innocent parties.”

Mr Eagle goes onto suggest that wholesalers have an obligation to set up “effective systems in line with agreed industry standards to detect, report and automatically block any unusual call activity as soon as it occurs”. Similarly he argues resellers need to be fully informed and able to react to intelligence as soon as it’s available and end user customers have a responsibility to ensure security and prevent hacking, cooperating with their providers effectively.

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