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Frank Remarks: 10 Things to Do When Your Internet Service Provider - Doesn't

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Many businesses have experienced the sudden quiet of an email system going down due to technical problems. What if that outage went from temporary to permanent, because your Internet service provider ceased operations? Are you prepared? Frank Fiore tells you 10 things to do NOW to get ready, just in case your ISP gives up the ghost.
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Your business is cruising along; prospects are being pitched, sales are coming in, orders are going out—you're a self-made online success. Life is good. Then one day—out of the blue—your web site is serving up 404 errors, your email is bouncing back all over the web, and your customers and clients think you're out of business.

You're in doo-doo city because your ISP just went belly-up.

Now What Do You Do?

If you're lucky, you may get a short but polite email from your ISP stating, in so many words, that they have succumbed to the dot-com crash and will cease operations shortly. This may give you some time to scramble and hunt up a quick and temporary way to stay in business.

But as the U.S. Marines say, it's better to "Be prepared."

So "make hay while the sun shines" and prepare for the unthinkable right now. Dead and dying ISPs are littering the Net landscape. If you're a small to medium-size business or even an independent salesperson using the Net to sell, you should make arrangements now to keep your lines of communications open to your clients and customers and some modicum of web presence up and running if your ISP suddenly disappears. And, by the way, if you're using one of those free Internet access services, don't count on keeping it. They're dropping like flies.

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