Ava Blog

Get your business moving fast at little or no cost.

Friday Friday, May 1, 2015 by Administrator

If you have business internet connection issues: then you may be eligible for a grant to up to £3000 for a new superfast broadband connection. Internet connections have moved on in the past few years. If you are a start up or an existing company with a poor internet connection, there are two things you can do to transform your business internet connection at little or no cost.

Go to a broadband speed check site:

Broadband speed test/ Is a good example. All you need to do is enter your postcode and you will more than likely get a range of extremely affordable options to get a very fast and usually reliable service.

What you probably don’t know is that irrespective of your supplier, your service will be almost certainly be maintained by a company called “open reach” who proved the maintenance service for almost all broadband services through your local telephone exchange.

The thing that makes the difference in your overall reliability is the quality of the guys that do the installation service and in our experience the Sky installers are a cut above the rest.

Alternatively you might get all this for free though a Government grant of up to £3,000:

connectionvouchers co uk just put in your postcode to see if it is available to you and then follow the instructions.

Two simple checks, is your web site working for you

Tuesday Tuesday, April 7, 2015 by Administrator

Concerned about how good your web site is?


In the past year Goole has made two significant changes concerning where your web site appears when people search for it. This is also known as ranking. Both these changes reflect how browsing habits are changing.  Simply, how people are using the web is changing.

The most recent one is: does your web site work on a mobile device? This is simply known as being responsive.  You can check this on a special “developers” page provided by Google, but anyone can use it:

All webs sites we supply for our customers are mobile friendly and pass this test.

Our results are at the bottom of this page.

The second change is a continuing one. Google are progressively giving secure sites higher ranking or better visibility. How do we know if a site is secure? Simply instead of the address starting http: it is https: A padlock appears in the address bar of your browser and the address bar may turn green. It says two important things. One your site is who it says it is in the address bar and this has been checked by a reputable organisation. Two the messages between you and the web site cannot be eavesdropped or interfered with by bad people on the net, just like when you browse your Bank’s web site. It is now a legal requirement in the UK and EU for any site that passes any personal information to be secure. The Ava supplied web portals or customer web sites are all fully secure.

To see the results for Ava:

Google.co.uk webmasters tools mobile-friendly ava.co.uk

Or for an un-stylised version of our customer web sites:

Google.co.uk webmasters tools mobile-friendly transport.ava.co.uk

To see your site, just put in the URL for your site instead.

 

This may also interest you: steps taken to ensure that the padlock in the address bar really means something

Securityweek Google revoke trust cnnic certificates
Google online security.blogspot maintaining digital certificate security

Mobile _Friendly _Test

 

 

 

Ava are proud to announce the initial launch of their advanced agency web staffing system

Wednesday Wednesday, February 18, 2015 by Administrator

Ava are proud to announce the initial launch of their advanced agency web staffing system for temping agancies and staff banks. Original planning for this product started over four years ago. It has been used by selected customers for over a year. It takes full advantage of the low cost structure that a fully web based temporary staff system can offer. It is probably the easiest system and the fastest system available anywhere in the world. It will take you from the initial request for shift staff to the payroll and invoice information in the shortest quickest route with the lowest amount of administration. It will give instant full compliance checks for staff. It will give instant lists of those matching the booking vacancy request with compliant available workers or compliant registered workers. It has individual pages for customers and workers at no extra cost.

HMRC withdraw some penalties for late PAYE information and refund some previous ones

Wednesday Wednesday, February 18, 2015 by Administrator

HMRC will no longer impose PAYE filing penalties for short delays from March 2015 and if they have been already imposed during the period 6 October 2014 to 5 January 2015, employers are requested to appeal.

There appears to be a small outbreak of sanity at HMRC possibly because of a court ruling or possibly because of a coming election?

To read more:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/hmrc-will-not-impose-paye-filing-penalties-for-short-delays-from-march-2015

VAT rules change on January 1st 2015

Friday Friday, December 5, 2014 by Administrator

It hasn’t received a lot of coverage in the press, but to combat the likes of Amazon and other on line retailers using tax avoidance techniques, the EU has changed the VAT tax rules.

This is becoming known as VATMOSS short for VAT Mini One Stop Shop.

If the customer is a private individual, then suppliers will be required to account and charge VAT in the (Member) State where the customer resides.

This does not affect Ava customers as they come under the B2B heading.

 

For further information:

Register-and-use-the-vat-mini-one-stop-shop (Gov UK web site)

the Guardian comment

 

 

How can and do Cybercrimes affect us

Sunday Sunday, November 2, 2014 by Administrator

It’s true that a significant proportion of adults in this country feel they have a poor understanding of the internet. Even as an IT professional in a world where detailed knowledge is becoming more fine grained and specialist, there are areas where personally I know I have only a superficial understanding. So even a superficial (but correct) understanding can be helpful to us or our businesses avoid becoming victims of Cybercrime.

The BBC has commissioned a series of programmes tucked away on the BBC News channel; which are delving into the murky and nefarious world of Cybercrime.

 

I watched the first episode yesterday and can say it’s entertaining, informative and couched in terms most people should be able to understand.

bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b04p23mv/cybercrimes-with-ben-hammersley-1-darknets

 

It’s available for another 6 days. There is a programme web site

bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04p2l66

 

And to find out more there is some help on the Open University web site (ironically you may get a security warning as we can only link to secure sites from our secure site).

open.edu/openlearn/whats-on/tv/ou-on-the-bbc-cybercrimes-ben-hammersley

 

 

 

 

Security and server reboots

Saturday Saturday, October 25, 2014 by Administrator

As most of you will no doubt know, it is essential to host personal data on a secure (https) certified web site, as opposed to a standard http site.

This is mandated in the UK by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

It’s also important not to just pay lip service to security concerns. Over the past few months, we have applied about a dozen security patches to the various software packages that provide our services.  Unfortunately this usually requires restarting our servers for the updates to take effect. So we had to do this again this week.

Our servers were down for about one minute between 3pm and 4pm on Saturday whist this rebooting took place (25th Oct 2014).

Our apology if this has caused any inconvenience. Unfortunately these reboots seem to be required more regularly in our efforts to keep the bad boys out.

 

Data protection in the UK: Information Commisioner's Office


 

Ava unable to open mail merge templates after domain move

Friday Friday, September 19, 2014 by Administrator

Moving the windows version of Ava from one domain to another is generally a very simple task. However there can be security issues if the appropriate permissions are not granted.

This is especially true of access to mail merge templates. Microsoft has an article here on setting up trust for shared folders.

http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/excel-help/create-remove-or-change-a-trusted-location-for-your-files-HA010031999.aspx

 Please ensure shared folders are consistently mapped for all Ava users as both read and write and that any other necessary domain security permissions are granted as appropriate.

 

 Steps to check for sucessful mail merge:

  • Update and Template drives are available for the user and they have the correct letter or unc paths are being used.
  • The user has the sufficient permissions to open the documents needed.
  • The documents open and the user can edit the file.
  • The template documents are in a trusted (folder) location.

 

 

 

Why you should use different passwords for different accounts

Wednesday Wednesday, May 28, 2014 by Administrator

A significant number of users have received ransom notices to get the use of their iPhones back. 

This sort of thing is not the first time this has happened to iPhone, iPad, Mac products. It seems the most likely path to them being hijacked is hacking of other accounts where they used the same password.

Read more: cut and paste to your browser

 

www.infoworld.com/d/mobile-technology/apple-devices-held-hostage-using-find-my-iphone-243133

 

 

Getting free security updates for windows xp until 2019

Tuesday Tuesday, May 27, 2014 by Administrator

Ok well we are still testing for compatibility with Windows XP and indeed Internet Explorer 7. Our customers in the NHS use this technology so we have to test against it. We would like it to be a secure as possible.  In fact the systems we test against are "Virtual" machines. They are run on known virus free fully patched PCs. Still it was interesting to find that there was a simple way to maintain the robustness of the XP testing machines against future threats.

 

If you would like to know too then here is the link to copy and paste into your browser:

http://betanews.com/2014/05/26/how-to-continue-getting-free-security-updates-for-windows-xp-until-2019/

and here it is again complete with the Microsoft response:

www.zdnet.com/registry-hack-enables-continued-updates-for-windows-xp-7000029851/

 

 

 

Contact Information

To find out more about Ava solutions you can contact us in a number of ways:
Follow Us...