Search
Close this search box.

BUI Announces Commitment to Respecting Data by Becoming a 2024 Data Privacy Week Champion

BUI Announces Commitment to Respecting Data by Becoming a 2024 Data Privacy Week Champion

This year’s initiative emphasises educating businesses on data collection best practices that respect data privacy and promote transparency

BUI announced its commitment to Data Privacy Week 2024 by registering as a Champion. As a Champion, BUI recognises and supports the principle that all organisations share the responsibility of being conscientious stewards of personal information. Data Privacy Week is an annual expanded effort from Data Privacy Day – taking place from 21st – 27th of January 2024. The goal of Data Privacy Week is to spread awareness about online privacy among individuals and organisations. The goal is twofold: to help citizens understand that they have the power to manage their data and to help organisations understand why it is important that they respect their users’ data.

How To Prioritize Data Privacy With Your Customers

The US National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCA) recommends adopting the following market leading practices:

  • Be transparent about how you collect, use, and share consumers’ personal information.
  • Think about how the consumer may expect their data to be used.
  • Design settings to protect their information by default.
  • Communicate clearly and concisely to the public what privacy means to your organization, as well as the steps you take to achieve and maintain privacy.

Engage the experts

Remember that most employees aren’t privacy or security experts. You will need to build in mechanisms that make it easy for them to report privacy and security concerns to your experts. Just like tools for preventing privacy incidents are critical, tools that easily empower employees to report are necessary in your company’s privacy toolbox, too.

Outsourcing to professional cybersecurity companies takes a load off your plate and ensures you have the data protection you deserve.

Take Control of your data

All your online activity generates a trail of data. Websites, apps, and services collect data on your behaviours, interests, and purchases. Sometimes, this includes personal data, like your Social Security and driver’s license numbers. It can even include data about your physical self, like health data – think about how a smartwatch counts and records how many steps you take.

While it’s true that you cannot control how each byte of data about you and your family is shared and processed, you are not helpless! In many cases, you can control how you share your data with a few simple steps. Remember, your data is precious, and you deserve to be selective about who you share it with!

Follow these steps to better manage your personal information and make informed decisions about who receives your data.

About Data Privacy Week

Data Privacy Week began as Data Privacy Day in the United States and Canada in January 2008 as an extension of the Data Protection Day celebration in Europe. Data Protection Day commemorates the 28th of January 1981, signing of Convention 108, the first legally binding international treaty dealing with privacy and data protection. NCA, the nation’s leading nonprofit, public-private partnership promoting cybersecurity and privacy education and awareness, leads the effort in North America each year. 

For more information, visit https://staysafeonline.org/data-privacy-week/.

About the National Cybersecurity Alliance

The National Cybersecurity Alliance is a non-profit organisation on a mission to create a more secure, interconnected world. We advocate for the safe use of all technology and educate everyone on how best to protect ourselves, our families, and our organisations from cybercrime. We create strong partnerships between governments and corporations to amplify our message and to foster a greater “digital” good.

For more information about Data Privacy Week and how to get involved, visit https://staysafeonline.org.

Improve your cybersecurity posture with an expert partner.

Cybercriminals are targeting enterprises big and small to try to gain access to sensitive, confidential, or proprietary data and resources.

How are you protecting your IT environment? Stay ahead of threat actors by choosing a managed detection and response service from BUI.

BUI supports global security awareness campaign

BUI supports global security awareness campaign

BUI is proud to participate in Cyber Security Awareness Month as a Champion Organisation for the sixth consecutive year. Founded in 2004, Cyber Security Awareness Month (held each October) is the world’s foremost initiative aimed at promoting cyber security awareness and best practices. The campaign is a collaborative effort among businesses, government agencies, colleges and universities, associations, non-profit organisations, communities and individuals to educate others about online safety.

“Knowledge and vigilance are essential when it comes to cyber security,” says BUI Global CEO Ryan Roseveare. “You need to know what to look out for. You need to know what to do when you see a red flag. And you need to be alert whenever you’re online. Cyber Security Awareness Month plays a key role in educating the public about common cyber risks and encouraging everyone to become more vigilant. BUI is pleased to join the international community in this focused effort to improve cyber security awareness worldwide.”

From smartphones to web-enabled home devices, technology is deeply intertwined with our lives. And while the evolution of technology accelerates, cybercriminals are working just as hard to find ways to compromise technology and disrupt our personal and business activities.

Cyber Security Awareness Month aims to highlight some of the emerging challenges that exist in the world of cyber security today and provide straightforward, actionable guidance which anyone can follow to create a safer, more secure digital world for themselves and their loved ones.

Starting this year, the new theme of Cyber Security Awareness Month is Secure Our World. The main messaging revolves around four cyber security practices:

  1. Creating strong passwords and using a password manager. The strongest passwords are long and unique, with a mixture of character types (lowercase letters, uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols).
  2. Enabling multi-factor authentication whenever possible. Multi-factor authentication, or MFA, adds an extra layer of security to digital accounts by making secondary authentication mandatory.
  3. Recognising and reporting phishing. Public awareness is essential as cybercriminals continue to refine their tactics for phishing scams conducted through emails, text messages, chats, and phone calls.
  4. Keeping software updated. The latest updates and security patches are important to install to ensure that operating systems, internet browsers, and applications are safeguarded.
  5. Cyber Security Awareness Month continues to build momentum and impact with the goal of providing everyone with the information they need to stay safe online. BUI is proud to support this far-reaching online safety awareness and education initiative, which is co-managed by the Cyber Security and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the National Cyber Security Alliance.

    For more information about the 2023 Cyber Security Awareness Month campaign, you can visit the CISA and Stay Safe Online websites. You can also follow BUI on LinkedIn, Facebook and X (formerly Twitter) for helpful tips and resources throughout October, and join the global conversation by including the hashtag #CyberSecurityAwarenessMonth in your own social media posts.

Improve your security posture with an award-winning technology partner.

Cybercriminals are targeting enterprises big and small to try to gain access to sensitive, confidential, or proprietary data and resources. How are you protecting your IT environment?

Stay ahead of threat actors by choosing a comprehensive managed extended detection and response service from BUI. Contact our team to explore Cyber MXDR today.

BUI earns ISO 22301 certification

Our commitment to ensuring business continuity – even in the face of disruption – has been recognised by the British Standards Institution.

We’re proud to announce that we have earned ISO 22301 certification after a rigorous independent evaluation by the British Standards Institution last month. The ISO 22301 badge is recognised internationally and sets the standard for Business Continuity Management Systems.

“This certification highlights the strength of our company’s business continuity strategy,” says Gayle Roseveare, our Chief Operating Officer (COO) here at BUI. “It proves to our staff, partners and customers that we’re prepared for any eventuality – and that we’re able to serve and support the people who rely on us, no matter what. Our ISO 22301 badge represents our commitment to effective risk management, organisational resilience, and reliability – even in the face of disruption,” notes Roseveare.

What is ISO 22301?

Developed by the International Organisation for Standardisation, ISO 22301 lays out a framework to help companies like ours create, implement, and maintain a comprehensive business continuity management system (BCMS). The main aim is to ensure that companies are protected against unforeseen business challenges and equipped to respond and recover when such events do occur.

“BUI is a global company with offices in East Africa, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States,” says Roseveare. “On any given day, our teams are provisioning cloud infrastructure, monitoring and securing digital environments, and delivering a wide range of IT services to customers. We operate around the world and around the clock – and we have to be able to do so continuously. Whether there are power outages in South Africa or internet connectivity issues in Europe, we need to ensure we can deliver uninterrupted services to our customers. Our ISO 22301 certificate validates our planning for disruptive incidents and disasters.”

Why is ISO 22301 certification important?

“In an unpredictable business climate, it pays to be prepared,” explains Dhiren Boodhia, our Group Governance and Compliance Manager. “And that goes double for service providers like us. To earn our ISO 22301 certificate, we had to demonstrate that we have a thorough BCMS in place; that the staff in our various offices understand the BCMS and the processes required to sustain it; and that we are focused on maintaining business continuity and sustainability regardless of market uncertainties and challenges. I think the ISO 22301 badge is an important differentiator – especially when customers are looking for a steadfast technology ally that is as dedicated to legal and regulatory compliance as it is to protecting the business resources of the organisations it works with,” he says.

For customers who choose to partner with BUI, there are five key benefits, adds Boodhia.

  1. Consistency. ISO 22301 emphasises the importance of consistency when it comes to best practices and business processes. “We’ve been assessed on our capabilities around risk assessment and impact analysis as well as our strategies for mitigating disruptions. Our teams excelled in every area – and that means our customers can expect the highest standards of service and care from everyone at BUI,” says Boodhia.
  2. Data protection. With the cyber threat landscape evolving so quickly, data privacy and data security are critical considerations for customers. “ISO 22301 includes extensive conditions for data protection and data recovery,” notes Boodhia. “Our ISO 22301 badge, together with the ISO 27001 certification we achieved for our commitment to information security management, should give our customers even greater confidence: we handle all data respectfully and safely.”
  3. Faster recovery. “ISO 22301 requires us to have a holistic strategy in place to deal with disruptions and disasters. It also mandates a detailed recovery plan to ensure that downtime is minimised – for our company and for the business organisations we serve,” says Boodhia. “BUI customers can be assured that, in the event of an issue, our teams will follow a step-by-step framework to resolve the problem as quickly as possible.”
  4. Greater compliance. By achieving ISO 22301 certification, BUI has met the global benchmark for business continuity management, adds Boodhia. “Many of our customers operate in highly regulated industries, like financial services and healthcare, and they must adhere to their own standards in terms of the services they provide to their clients. BUI is committed to maintaining essential functions during adverse circumstances – and that’s a big plus for customers who have strict compliance obligations.”
  5. Peace of mind. ISO 22301 calls for certified organisations to update and improve their business continuity processes to ensure that their strategies remain current, relevant, and effective. “We’re obligated to adapt and enhance our BCMS plan as our company grows,” explains Boodhia. “It’s good news for our customers because it means we’re always prepared. Whatever happens, the BUI services and solutions that so many businesses utilise every day will be available.”

Our commitment to your success

ISO 22301 may be our newest certification, but it’s also a testament to our unwavering focus on our customers, notes our COO. “To be a dependable, reliable technology partner, you need to anticipate the challenges you’re going to face and then take the necessary steps to ensure that you can address those challenges as soon as they arise. We’re being proactive today so that we’re ready for tomorrow – and always on hand to help our customers be productive, secure, and resilient,” Roseveare concludes.

Do you have a disaster recovery plan in place?

Our experts can help you craft a comprehensive backup strategy aligned with your business structure, your IT resources, your budget, and your goals.

Contact our team to arrange a discussion today.

BUI achieves Fortinet’s Cloud Security Specialization

We’re pleased to announce that we have achieved Fortinet’s Cloud Security Specialization as part of the Fortinet Engage Partner Programme. We’re the first Fortinet partner in South Africa to earn this level of recognition and one of the few partners in the EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa) region currently holding this particular specialization.

Fortinet’s Cloud Security Specialization is awarded only to those partners who have demonstrated the advanced knowledge and skills required to deploy and manage Fortinet’s range of cloud security solutions effectively.

“We’re thrilled with this achievement, and we’re so proud of our people,” says Donovan Vernes, BUI Service Delivery Manager (Network Operations). “Fortinet has very strict qualifying criteria, from technical expertise and experience to sales alignment, and we met every single benchmark.”

Cloud security specialists

The BUI Network and Security teams are already highly certified, with credentials that span the full breadth of the Fortinet certification path, but Vernes emphasises the significance of our new Cloud Security Specialization. “It’s a validation of our cloud capabilities and an acknowledgement of our commitment to deliver the best possible cybersecurity solutions to our customers.”

Cloud adoption continues to accelerate as customers modernise and transform their operations, notes Vernes. “We’re seeing more and more business organisations with public, private, hybrid and multi-cloud environments in play. These complex systems can be challenging to secure – and even more so when there are diverse technologies involved… That’s why customers need experts they can count on to provide consistent, quality service and support. By earning the Fortinet Cloud Security Specialization, I believe BUI has distinguished itself as a trusted security advisor and guide,” he says.

The cost of cybercrime

The cost of cybercrime is predicted to hit $8 trillion this year – and no company is immune to the threat posed by cybercriminals. “Organisations of all sizes, across sectors and industries, are potential targets,” warns Vernes, citing statistics from Fortinet’s recent research.

“According to The 2023 Global Ransomware Report, half of enterprises fell victim to a ransomware attack in the last 12 months, and 46% were targeted by ransomware two or more times,” he says, adding that phishing, access via vulnerable ports, and remote desktop exploits were the most common tactics observed.

“Now, more than ever, enterprises should strive for unified security,” advises Vernes. “By integrating your security tools, technologies and systems, you can gather relevant, actionable data from your business sources and gain deeper insights regarding potential threats. This will allow you to close security gaps, enable faster detection and response, and minimise your attack surface.”

Fortify your defences

As a Fortinet partner, BUI offers professional consultations, reactive support, and managed services tailored for each customer’s security journey. “Our comprehensive security expertise, our advanced security solutions, and our ability to help customers improve their overall security posture sets us apart,” says Vernes.

Comprehensive security expertise

Cybersecurity is a critical profession in this digital age, but there aren’t enough professionals to meet the global demand. “The skills shortage is a major concern for customers, who want top talent to protect their business resources,” says Vernes.

“As a Fortinet Select Partner, BUI is required to have top talent… Experienced technologists who have undergone specialised training to address the unique security challenges of hyperconnected workplaces. Customers who choose BUI are choosing a team with deep cloud and security expertise and a track record of success.”

Advanced security solutions

As a Cloud Security Specialization partner, BUI has access to Fortinet’s advanced security solutions, including FortiGate Cloud (for the management and maintenance of Fortinet’s FortiGate Next-Generation Firewalls), FortiCASB (Fortinet’s Cloud Access Security Broker for monitoring security risks), and FortiCWP (Fortinet’s Cloud Workload Protection solution). 

“There’s a wide range of Fortinet tools available to give customers greater visibility across their cloud infrastructure and greater control over their connected systems,” explains Vernes. “Customers who choose BUI can benefit from single-pane-of-glass cloud management, streamlined network and security operations, and holistic protection with cutting-edge technology.”

Improved security posture

To maintain business continuity in a world of evolving cyber threats, organisations must ensure the security of their cloud environments. “A clear understanding of the enterprise security posture is vital,” says Vernes.

“Customers need to know how effective their defences really are so that they can adjust their IT strategies accordingly. We can help them find the right Fortinet products to support their security goals, and ensure that the requisite network, application and platform solutions are correctly integrated and fully optimised,” he concludes.

Let’s secure your business organisation today.

Looking for a technology partner to enable comprehensive protection for your organisation’s users, devices, applications, and network edges?

Book a consultation with us to explore Fortinet’s cutting-edge security solutions for public, private, hybrid and multi-cloud environments.

Data Privacy Week: How to earn customer trust

Respecting the privacy of your customers, staff, and all other stakeholders is critical for inspiring trust and enhancing reputation.

According to the Pew Research Center, 79% of adults report being concerned about the way their data is being used by companies. By being open about how you use data and respecting privacy, you can earn customer trust and stand out from your competition.

How To Prioritize Data Privacy With Your Customers

The US National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCA) recommends adopting the following market leading practices:

  • Be transparent about how you collect, use, and share consumers’ personal information.
  • Think about how the consumer may expect their data to be used.
  • Design settings to protect their information by default.
  • Communicate clearly and concisely to the public what privacy means to your organization, as well as the steps you take to achieve and maintain privacy.

How To Prioritize Data Privacy With Your Employees

Additionally, you can also focus on upskilling your employees in the following ways:

Start Raising Awareness  

A privacy awareness campaign can empower your employees to make the best cybersecurity choices.

Share messages about privacy in places employees will see them: on internal social media, around the office, on employee intranet portals, in company newsletters, and emails.

Use our resources or look for other resources online. You shouldn’t have to start from scratch, and there are a lot of materials available for free, especially leading up to Data Privacy Week in January.

Organize privacy training

Privacy is moving quickly. New legislation and regulations are always in the works, and your business doesn’t stand still either.

You may be launching a new product in a country or state that has privacy laws you’ll need to comply with. Find privacy training that fits your culture.

There are many providers and while the meat of the message is largely similar, the way it’s delivered varies. It’s a question of style and tone: do you want friendly and animated, or a more buttoned-down e-learning course?

Pick what’s right for your organization, not just in terms of covering all the facts, but culturally as well. That way the training is more likely stick and give you the ROI you’re looking for.

Add privacy to the employee toolbox

Make it easier to prioritize privacy. Provide your employees with the tools they can use to improve their privacy, such as company-branded camera covers, privacy screens for their devices, and virtual private networks (VPNs) to secure their connections, or password management software.

Many of these tools will cost the company money, but the peace of mind is well worth it. And the costs pale in comparison to dealing with an incident or breach.

Engage the experts

Remember that most employees aren’t privacy or security experts. You will need to build in mechanisms that make it easy for them to report privacy and security concerns to your experts. Just like tools for preventing privacy incidents are critical, tools that easily empower employees to report are necessary in your company’s privacy toolbox, too.

Outsourcing to professional cybersecurity companies takes a load off your plate and ensures you have the data protection you deserve.

Become a Data Privacy Champion

Another way to differentiate yourself within your market is by becoming a Data Privacy Week Champion.

Data Privacy Week began as Data Privacy Day in the United States and Canada in January 2008 as an extension of the Data Protection Day celebration in Europe. The National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCA), a leading nonprofit, public-private partnership promoting cybersecurity and privacy education and awareness, leads the effort each year.

The NCA is a non-profit organization on a mission to create a more secure, interconnected world. They advocate for the safe use of all technology and educate everyone on how best to protect themselves, their families, and their organizations from cybercrime. They also create strong partnerships between governments and corporations to ensure cybersecurity for all.

For more information about Data Privacy Week and how to get involved, visit https://staysafeonline.org/programs/data-privacy-week/.

Improve your cybersecurity posture with an expert partner.

Cybercriminals are targeting enterprises big and small to try to gain access to sensitive, confidential, or proprietary data and resources.

How are you protecting your IT environment? Stay ahead of threat actors by choosing a managed detection and response service from BUI.

Practical pointers to help you improve workplace data security

Businesses that take a proactive approach to cybersecurity are better equipped to safeguard sensitive data and spot suspicious activity.

Keeping sensitive data safe and secure is a challenge for businesses of all sizes. Major shifts in the workplace – from in-person to remote and hybrid productivity – forced companies to change, or at least re-assess, their cybersecurity practices and protocols. And far too often, they were not adequately prepared for the evolving cyberthreat landscape.

In fact, according to CyberEdge’s ninth annual Cyberthreat Defence Report, more than 80% of organisations suffered from a successful cyberattack in 2021. With data privacy and data security top of mind, businesses are looking to strengthen their defences against cybercriminals. Here are four simple steps you can take to better protect your workplace data.

1 | Identify the ‘crown jewels’ of your business

Knowing what kind of data cybercriminals want is an essential part of your defence strategy. Therefore, creating an inventory of your so-called crown jewels (the most valuable data and data-related assets within your organisation, including hardware and software information) is important.

In addition, you should have a current (and actively maintained) list of every end-user who has access to your critical business data. Keep accurate records, with device and location details, so that you can carry out the necessary forensic investigations in the event of a data breach.

 2 | Make sure you’re updating and authenticating – always

Keep your operating systems, software packages and web browsers up to date and ensure that all devices have automatic updates enabled. When your connected environment is well maintained, with patches and updates carried out timeously, then your overall security posture is that much stronger.

In addition, make sure that your staff use multifactor authentication (MFA) when they log in. Simple username-and-password combinations are not enough to keep cybercriminals at bay, and MFA could mean the difference between a successful or an unsuccessful hack.

3 | Actively monitor your connected environment for suspicious activity

You should monitor your IT environment continuously to detect misconfigurations, vulnerabilities, breach attempts, and cyberattacks in real time. If you have dedicated cybersecurity personnel, they can implement endpoint security technology to help monitor your network. If not, you can bring in SecOps experts to actively identify, investigate, and mitigate cyberthreats 24/7/365.

Moreover, make sure that everyone in your organisation understands the importance of good cyber hygiene and is following the security policies you have in place. When your people know how to spot phishing attempts, for example, then they can respond appropriately.

4 | Prepare your response plan in advance

No matter how many safeguards you have in place, the unfortunate reality is that cyber incidents still occur. However, responding in a comprehensive manner will reduce the impact on your business and send a positive signal to your customers and employees. Therefore, you should have an incident response plan prepared in advance.

This document should be stored safely and your dedicated response team should be able to access it quickly when the need arises. Make sure your incident response plan includes clearly defined technical, operational, legal, and communication-related steps for your team to follow.


BUI is proud to be a Champion organisation for the 2022 edition of Cybersecurity Awareness Month. This article was originally provided by the National Cybersecurity Alliance and is republished here with permission.

Improve your cybersecurity posture with an expert partner.

Cybercriminals are targeting enterprises big and small to try to gain access to sensitive, confidential, or proprietary data and resources.

How are you protecting your IT environment? Stay ahead of threat actors by choosing a managed detection and response service from BUI.

Three awards for BUI as Microsoft SA honours top partners

We scooped three prestigious accolades at the 2022 Microsoft South Africa Partner Awards.

We’re excited to announce that we won the Azure Infrastructure Partner of the Year Award, the Modern Work Partner of the Year Award, and the Security Partner of the Year Award at the FY22 Microsoft South Africa Partner Awards on 28 September 2022.

The gala dinner and prizegiving ceremony took place at the Marriott Hotel Melrose Arch in Sandton, where members of the local Microsoft Partner ecosystem gathered together, in person, for the first time since 2019. Microsoft SA’s awards evenings in 2020 and 2021 were held virtually as lockdown protocols remained in place at the height of the coronavirus pandemic.

Celebrating innovation

The Microsoft SA Partner Awards are presented annually to acknowledge the partner organisations that have excelled in delivering Microsoft solutions over the past 12 months. Award submissions are reviewed by a panel of judges and entries are evaluated in terms of partner competencies, cloud transformation, entrepreneurial spirit, and sales performance, among other factors.

This year, Microsoft SA CEO Lillian Barnard praised partners for pushing beyond all limits to modernise, transform, and enable success for enterprises in South Africa and around the world. In her opening speech on the night, Barnard remarked: “Let me start first by just expressing my gratitude on behalf of the Microsoft company for all that you’ve done in our markets, and in our business. The work that you continue to do in our country is just simply inspiring. You are driving digital transformation and innovation, and you are doing this with a deep sense of commitment.”

Driving transformation

BUI was named Azure Infrastructure Partner of the Year for its proven success in helping customers modernise their infrastructure and migrate their applications and data to the cloud. “We’re always thrilled to receive this award,” says Managing Director Ryan Roseveare, highlighting the ninth time that BUI has won this award.

“This accolade is a tremendous achievement in recognition of our team’s focus and positive outcomes. It’s also a validation of our consistency, our high standard of work, and our dedication to our customers. We’re actively driving digital transformation by helping businesses to become more agile and more resilient with Azure’s extensive range of solutions,” adds Roseveare.

Enabling productivity

As the Modern Work Partner of the Year, BUI was acknowledged for enabling performance and productivity with Microsoft’s comprehensive set of cloud-powered tools for the modern workplace. “From Office 365 to Microsoft Teams and Microsoft Viva, we’re empowering customers with the technology they need to communicate and collaborate effectively in remote and hybrid scenarios,” says National Sales Manager Paul Wallett.

“We’re also supporting our customers as they adapt to new ways of working, and making sure that they’re able to leverage the full power of the cloud and the Microsoft resources at their disposal to take their enterprises to the next level,” he continues. “The whole BUI team is invested in creating real value for customers – by delivering cutting-edge business solutions and world-class service.”

Accelerating security

Roseveare is thrilled to take home the Security Partner of the Year award yet again – especially after the recent expansion of BUI’s security portfolio. “In an environment where the right skills are harder to find than ever before, we’re putting more energy and focus into our security solutions and services – because customers are looking for trusted partners to help them protect their digital environments. From our own Cyber SoC and MDR facilities, and as part of Microsoft Security Experts, we’re helping businesses to manage and strengthen their cyber defences,” he says.

“We’ve earned our reputation as a leader in the security space by combining talent and technology,” notes Wallett. “Our security operations division includes some of the most highly skilled and highly certified professionals in the country, and we’re constantly innovating with the Microsoft stack to offer our customers bespoke solutions to accelerate their security.”

With three new Microsoft Partner of the Year awards to celebrate, Wallett and Roseveare are quick to praise the BUI team. “I’m so proud of everyone,” says Wallett. “It’s rewarding to receive these accolades and to be acknowledged in our industry, but none of it would be possible without the dedication shown by our people every day.” Roseveare agrees. “It’s wonderful to see the team’s efforts honoured by Microsoft. We look forward to another year of collective success as we continue to support customers through every stage of the cloud journey,” he concludes.

Improve your cybersecurity posture with an expert partner.

Cybercriminals are targeting enterprises big and small to try to gain access to sensitive, confidential, or proprietary data and resources.

How are you protecting your IT environment? Stay ahead of threat actors by choosing a managed detection and response service from BUI.

BUI is proud to support Cybersecurity Awareness Month for the fifth year in a row

This year, Cybersecurity Awareness Month is geared towards empowering individuals and organisations to improve their cybersecurity through simple, actionable steps.

BUI is proud to be a Champion organisation for Cybersecurity Awareness Month in October 2022. Launched in 2004, Cybersecurity Awareness Month is held annually in October, and is regarded as a leading global initiative in the promotion of cybersecurity awareness and best practices.

The Cybersecurity Awareness Month Champions Programme is a collaborative effort among businesses, government agencies, industry associations, non-profit organisations, universities, and individuals. This year’s theme for Cybersecurity Awareness Month is “it’s easy to stay safe online” and Champions – including BUI and technology giants like Microsoft and Cisco – will be sharing actionable advice to help people improve their digital safety.

“We’re excited to take part in Cybersecurity Awareness Month for the fifth consecutive year,” says BUI Managing Director Ryan Roseveare. “Worldwide campaigns like this, which are designed to drive public awareness and public action, show that cybersecurity really is a team effort. We all have a role to play in protecting the devices, applications and networks that enable our personal and professional activities.”

From smartphones and wearable devices to home-automation systems, technology is becoming more intertwined in our lives every day. And while the evolution of technology is accelerating at a rapid pace, cybercriminals are working just as hard to find ways to compromise technology and disrupt business operations.

Cybersecurity Awareness Month aims to highlight some of the emerging challenges in the world of cybersecurity today, and provide straightforward and actionable guidance that anyone can follow to create a safer and more secure digital world for themselves and their loved ones.

This year, Cybersecurity Awareness Month will focus on four key areas:

  • Recognising phishing, which remains a popular tactic used by cybercriminals;
  • Understanding the benefits of strong password management practices;
  • Enabling multi-factor authentication on personal devices and business networks;
  • Installing software updates on a regular basis and turning on automatic updates.

Now in its 19th year, Cybersecurity Awareness Month continues to build momentum and impact with the ultimate goal of providing everyone with the information they need to be more secure online. BUI is proud to support this online safety awareness and education initiative, which is co-led by the National Cyber Security Alliance and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) of the United States Department of Homeland Security.

For more information about Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2022, visit the staysafeonline.org website. And be sure to follow BUI on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube for helpful cybersecurity tips and #BeCyberSmart resources throughout the month of October!

Start planning your StorSimple data migration today

Microsoft support for the StorSimple 8000 series will end in December 2022. Have you started planning your data migration yet?

On 31 December 2022, Microsoft will end support for all StorSimple 8000 series devices and StorSimple Data Manager and Snapshot Manager software. This end of support (EOS) date will coincide with the discontinuation – or end of life (EOL) – of the StorSimple service.

If you’re using StorSimple as your hybrid cloud storage solution, then it’s important to understand how EOS for the 8000 series and EOL retirement of the service itself will impact your enterprise. Here’s what you need to know…

EOS for the StorSimple 8000 series is effective on 31 December 2022. On that day, Microsoft will end support for:

  • StorSimple 8000 series (8100, 8600, 8010, 8020) devices
  • StorSimple Data Manager
  • StorSimple Snapshot Manager

EOL for the StorSimple service is also effective on 31 December 2022, which means the following will no longer be available:

  • All cloud management capability
  • Access to live data and backups
  • Access to customer support resources (phone, email, web)
  • Hardware replacement parts and repair services for StorSimple 8000 series devices
  • Software updates for StorSimple 8000 series devices

StorSimple users are being encouraged to finalise a migration strategy as soon as possible to avoid losing critical stored data when the StorSimple service is discontinued at the end of the year. Today, we’re answering the most common questions about StorSimple migrations to help you take your next steps…

Q. Why is Microsoft ending support for the StorSimple 8000 series?

A. The StorSimple 8000 series follows Microsoft’s Fixed Lifecycle Policy. Mainstream Support ended on 1 July 2020 and Extended Support will end on 31 December 2022.

Several other StorSimple products – including the StorSimple 5000 series, 7000 series and 1200 series – also follow Microsoft’s Fixed Lifecycle Policy, and adhere to their own EOS timelines:

Since its launch in November 2014, the StorSimple 8000 series has been embraced by enterprises looking for the best of both worlds: the scalability of cloud storage for limitless capacity, and on-premises physical or virtual storage arrays for performance and flexibility. Now, as Microsoft continues to expand its portfolio of Azure hybrid storage capabilities with new services for data tiering and cloud ingestion, there are more options for customers to store data natively in Azure.

Q. I have data stored locally on my StorSimple device. What will happen to that data, beyond the StorSimple EOL date in December 2022?

A. You will lose all data stored locally on your StorSimple device, which has a limited, local cache capacity. Microsoft has advised customers: “Once the StorSimple cloud service is shut down, you will not be able to access tiered files that your local device only holds a cloud reference for… Eventually, the device will stop working when it is no longer able to reach the cloud service.” To preserve your data, you need to migrate it into a new solution before the StorSimple EOL date in December 2022.

Q. I have a StorSimple 8000 series device on-premises. What will happen to it, beyond the StorSimple EOL date in December 2022?

A. Depending on your contractual obligations, you may be able to keep the device hardware. Microsoft has indicated that it will not ask for leased devices to be returned. Bear in mind that your device will stop working; the StorSimple service will stop working; and hardware and software support will no longer be available from Microsoft.

Q. What are my StorSimple migration options?

A. As a StorSimple customer, you have a range of choices for migrating your data – but the right choice will depend on your particular business environment. You’ll have to evaluate your existing StorSimple deployments and workloads, and then match them with an alternative solution that can support your current file-storage demands and scale to meet your future requirements. Need help? Talk to our experts, who can recommend the right solution for your enterprise and customise a migration strategy to streamline your StorSimple move.

Q. How long will it take to complete my StorSimple migration?

A. Every StorSimple migration project is different and time-to-completion will depend on the structure of the existing StorSimple deployment, the data volumes in play, and any bandwidth limitations, among other factors. The depth and breadth of the planning and preparation done beforehand will also affect the speed and progression of the migration, so make sure that you engage with your cloud solution provider in advance.

The timelines announced by Microsoft (EOS for the StorSimple 8000 series and EOL for the StorSimple service) are concrete – and there are only a few months left until yearend. If you haven’t started planning your StorSimple data migration yet, then you should prioritise the task immediately so that your stored files remain accessible beyond 31 December 2022.

‘Find your passion and make it your life’

BUI Technical Consultant Emily Bekker tells us how she embraced her inner nerd and defied expectations to pursue a career in technology.

“I did one of those aptitude tests in high school and the recommended job for me was ‘mechanic’ or something hands-on like that,” says BUI Technical Consultant Emily Bekker as she describes an early discussion about her career path. “The test revealed that I used both sides of my brain equally… Left and right, or logical and creative, pretty much the same. I was advised to look at professions where I’d get to use the two abilities together, but I already knew I wanted to work with computers. I knew that my analytical nature would serve me well,” recalls Bekker.

When she matriculated in 2005 and announced her plans to pursue CompTIA’s A+ and Network+ certifications, there were a few raised eyebrows in her Free State hometown. “My family and friends were supportive, but they were also really surprised. There were a lot of conversations that started with ‘why’,” laughs Bekker. “Even in the early 2000s, I guess the idea of a young woman wanting to study something so technical was a bit strange to people. And maybe there were expectations for me to explore art instead,” she muses.

Bekker comes from an artistic family and has been drawing and painting since childhood. “When I was little, I wanted to become a graphic designer,” she confesses. “But I got my first computer in primary school and I was fascinated by it.” Bekker’s PC DOS 6.1 provided hours of entertainment when it worked – and when it didn’t. “I was a total nerd… I still am! I’d spend all day trying to find the problem and fix it. I was curious about technology, and I was determined to learn as much as possible about my computer, step by step.”

Curiosity and critical thinking

While she’s always been inquisitive, Bekker credits her parents for the measured, methodical approach to problem-solving that she’s employed throughout her career. “My mom and dad are very grounded and very rational. They taught me how to think critically and how to look at things from different angles,” she explains. “These are valuable skills to have when you’re in an IT job, especially one where troubleshooting is an integral part of your day.”

Armed with her A+ and Network+ qualifications and a solid foundation in hardware and software support and network maintenance, Bekker joined a computer sales-and-repair store in Welkom. “It was my initiation into operational support, but I learned so much about sales, customer service, and business processes,” she says, adding that the position paved the way for her later roles with larger corporate and retail establishments, as well as a lengthy spell with a gold-mining firm.

“Working in the mining sector was an eye-opener for me,” remembers Bekker. “I knew, going in, that it was a male-dominated industry, but I’m not sure I was prepared for the level of gender bias I experienced back then. It was intimidating at first, but I wanted to prove myself. I also wanted to prove that success didn’t come down to gender.” Bekker’s tenacity paid off, and she counts her seven years as an on-site support technician among her most formative experiences.

Making a real difference for customers

Today, as a technical consultant and key member of the BUI managed services team, Bekker provides operational and service support to customers around the world. “No two days are the same, and I love that about my job,” she says, explaining how she might move from server patching one moment to desktop troubleshooting the next. “I spend a lot of time talking to people, and it’s so rewarding to be able to help them. When I’ve answered their question or fixed their issue, and they can happily move on with their day, I know I’ve made a difference. There’s always something new to learn, though, and that certainly keeps things interesting!”

Bekker is currently studying towards her Microsoft 365: Modern Desktop Administrator (Associate) certification, and plans to expand her M365 skills in the future so that she’s equipped to manage and secure Microsoft 365 enterprise environments. “I’m grateful to have such supportive colleagues here at BUI, and to be part of a company where career development is not only encouraged, but enabled.” As an enthusiastic learner, Bekker admits she finds it tough to walk away from her textbooks. “But I’m taking Women’s Day off, for sure,” she chuckles, sharing her plans for a spa day with her mom.

What else is on the horizon for Bekker? She hasn’t closed the door on her childhood aspirations and may still add “graphic design” to her list of skills – but technology remains her favourite niche. “I’m always telling people to get into the IT field… A logical brain and a healthy sense of curiosity will take you far in this industry. And don’t let anyone box you in: when you find your passion, make it your life,” she concludes.