How far are you willing to go to prove to your customers that you are protecting them?  Would you infect your computer with Ransomware?

By Ken Jackson on Nov 27, 2017

Founded in 2013, Finchloom is a Microsoft Certified Partner (as well as a SkyKick partner) specializing in helping businesses make the most of Microsoft Cloud Services. What makes Finchloom a unique—and powerful—solutions Partner is their focus and expertise. Since day one Finchloom’s business has been completely focused on supporting Microsoft cloud services for end users. This includes bringing in best-of-breed products and services (such as SkyKick Cloud Backup) to compliment the Microsoft Office 365 and Azure solution. Clients love how Finchloom training, management, and support increase productivity and security for their organizations.

As part of Finchloom’s marketing efforts, Founder/CEO Jim Richardson recently infected a computer with ransomware and then recovered the data…all live on the internet in a 25-minute webinar! As more partners shift their businesses to using more managed services, MSPs are finding new advantages that tools like Skykick's Cloud Backup can provide, giving them a competitive edge and delighted customers.

SkyKick caught up with Brian Levine and Jim Richardson to find out a little more about Finchloom and how Jim came up with the idea of infecting his own computer with ransomware.

See how they did it!

Q: Tell us a little bit about Finchloom and how you are finding success as an MSP.

A: At Finchloom we’ve tried to shift away from managing servers and started managing services. The Cloud is a perfect opportunity to accomplish this goal. We tell everyone to get rid of servers and start to put apps and data in the cloud, and then we manage the services.

Microsoft recommends that you don’t just sell Office 365, but that you should bundle it into your own unique messaging and offering and that’s exactly what we’ve done. We offer bundled solutions where we sell Office 365 and Azure subscriptions and then bundle in our methodology in the form of three services customized for the end user: manage, teach, and support. If we can do this for our clients’, we increase productivity and security for the entire organization.

Finchloom was “born in the Cloud.” We weren’t a company like other partners out there that was selling hardware and then decided to switch to the Cloud. We were always there.  We’ve always been and are 99.9% a Microsoft reseller. We don’t do anything else. We simply focus on being phenomenal at supporting Microsoft in the field to the end users.

We bundle with SkyKick because as an aggregator of products and services we can pick and choose what we think is a best of breed solution. We start with the foundation – Office 365 and Azure – we add other things on like SkyKick or another vendor’s security product, then top this off with our services. The partners we use are supporting the Microsoft solution. It’s all around Microsoft. They’re complimentary to the Microsoft solution and the client pays one bill to us for a complete solution.

Q: What made you start making videos like this?

A: I wanted to start doing more video based webinars for the public. I came up with this idea to do “stunts”. Why don’t I do this first stunt and infect myself with ransomware and also give a message to viewers – we can recover from this.

Q: How did you get the idea to infect your computer with ransomware?

A: It’s been in the news lately that ransomware affected a bunch of companies. I don’t like that big companies get impacted by ransomware and have to pay up to get their files back. I wanted to show people it’s not so bad if you do these things you can protect yourself.

Q: What was the secret to your quick recovery from ransomware?

A: SkyKick Cloud Backup for Office 365 was the “secret sauce!” As I demonstrated in the webinar, if you are using OneDrive and are syncing your desktop to the cloud, a ransomware infection can instantly encrypt the files at both locations. But our SkyKick backup, which is stored completely separately, was not infected. With just a few clicks the files were restored.

Q: From the sales and marketing standpoint, what have been the results of the webinar?

A: We have no analytics around it. It really was Jim’s creative Hollywood mind.  All we’re trying to do is get our name out there and get recognized. Like this, this is awesome!

SkyKick & Finchloom

Q: Why did you decide to sell SkyKick’s Office 365 Cloud backup solution?

A: Two reasons. The first reason is that we got it with the accelerate bundle from SkyKick. We started using SkyKick as a migration tool to move mailboxes from on premise to the cloud. I set up Cloud Backup with my internal use rights and we used it ourselves. We backed up our own tenant. I used it a few times in demos to show how easy it is to recover.  Reason number two is as an insurance policy.  I thought initially the guidance was if you use One Drive and you sync and you get infected, with version control can roll back and get to the previous version. But this time it didn’t work. My ransomware infected the synced versions, too. There was no way to recover the original files. With SkyKick I was able to restore.

Q: Why is Office 365 Cloud Backup an important product line for your business?

A: Before SkyKick: we were talking about selling backup as an optional component. We felt like for the most part the data was protected. But then when I found out SkyKick Cloud Backup helped with additional recovery we realized we could sell it as an insurance policy. Microsoft on its own provides this level of protection. But you add this layer and you can get nearly 100% protection. Plus it’s convenient and easy. We call it an insurance policy because you don’t use it on a routine basis. But when needed it’s wonderful.

Q: How do you sell Cloud Backup?

A: We sell it as part of bundle. We consider it an optional add-on for "insurance" purposes.  We always bring it up as part of the intitial discussion, and let peopple know that If you use One Drive sync you must have an insurance policy.

We also let them know that we will give their admins access to the portal for SkyKick restore. This way if they need to restore a file they can login, click a button, and take care of it themselves.

Q: Who is ordering Backup?

A: So far it’s 50/50 on who buys it. Most of the smaller businesses are buying it. Most of the larger clients are just getting their toes wet with files in the cloud and don’t have a lot of questions around it yet.  We suspect cloud backup will be a big thing.

Q: Can you share a few tips for other Partners regarding how to successfully sell Office 365 Backup services?

A: When you talk about moving files to the cloud with your client, the first thing to bring up is that once your files are there, then what? How will you address security, compliance, backup, retention, etc.? Discuss what Microsoft offers versus what the client might need beyond that. That’s where we have an opportunity for third party premium services. Sell it as an insurance policy, sell it as part of the bundle, and bring up the conversation in the first place.

We thank Jim and Brian From Finchloom for taking the time to talk with us about their amazing video and for talking a little about how they run a successful cloud business. 

Jim Richardson: Founder/CEO
Brian Levine: Executive VP

Finchloom - Los Angeles CA
https://www.finchloom.com

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Topics: MSPs Cloud Backup For Partners Ransomware