Helen Sage reports
AIM Professional has identified a need among its clients for crisis consultancy in the event of computer theft and damage.
The company is offering eight hours of free "crisis consultancy" to all existing and potential customers.
This year 10 AIM users have lost vital computer equipment through burglary, flooding and electrical storm damage.
Last month Velvet Palms, which helps law firms establish an Internet site, was stripped of its computer and telecommunications equipment by thieves.
The AIM service, which is written into client contracts, involves setting up an emergency system immediately and then rebuilding the original system.
After researching the area of computer theft and damage the company found that the contingency plans of most firms were over-optimistic because they did not have practical experience of such situations.
Karl Kaegler, sales and marketing manager at AIM, said: "Computer theft is an increasing problem. It seems obvious for us to put our knowledge into practice and assist our clients in laying adequate safety nets for the future."
John Burrill, Linetime chair and managing director, said he has dealt with six firms which have suffered computer thefts in the past two years. In the summer, Altos systems were stolen from Mundays in Esher.
Nicky Davey, computer consultant to Mundays, said: "There has been a spate of computer thefts in the Esher area. The professional burglars are after the memory chips. The hardware is probably being dumped after these have been removed.
"Whenever our clients are in trouble we pull out all the stops to help them with no specific disaster recovery charge. When Mundays phoned us on the Friday to tell us about their theft we had a new system up and running by the Sunday."