A new Dental Office client came to us for help with their network, as existing systems, software and training were very out of date and prone to failure, not to mention the risk of data loss.

After a careful assessment, 604 Consulting laid out a prioritized plan to improve not only system performance and productivity but security, business continuity and communications.  This assessment included recommendations such as:

  • Centralized user security measures and folder security
  • Business Continuity Plan, including offsite backup, disaster response strategy and on-site backup appliance
  • Advanced Security Firewall
  • Management and monitoring of all servers and workstations
  • Hardware and software upgrade roadmap for warranty protection and licencing compliance

Our first priority item was to put adequate backup in place; the client had over 200GB of business critical data protected only with an external USB drive, that was both insecure and required manual operation. 

Despite our best efforts, the client opted for a minimal solution where data was backed up off-site, but the other action items were shelved for future implementation.

In dental terms, this is the equivalent to getting a root canal but not having a crown done. Just a few short months later, a user unknowingly became the victim of ransomware – the proverbial tooth had fractured.

Because user-based security measures had not yet been implemented, this made the virus’ reach spread across their entire dataset. When the client phoned us in a panic, the entire office was paralyzed and unable to work. Scheduling, patient data, billing and insurance submissions, everything was inaccessible. Administrative duties were piling up, patients were getting frustrated, and business costs were mounting by the minute.

Thankfully, they had chosen the minimum action recommended, we were able to recover the data. While they were able to resume normal operations later that day, there was still a significant cost impact due to the resulting downtime and emergency support, both from us and software vendor. All of these costs could have been prevented.

As a result, the client chose to adopt our comprehensive technology plan as originally proposed; they have been event free ever since.  Prevention and proper maintenance is critical in a rapidly changing environment, both in computers and in mouths!