Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s staff bio is Gareth. Gareth is our Business Development Director here at Matrix. We hope you enjoy learning more.

  1. What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT?

Gareth McQuaid, 46, Keighley, Business Development Director, 9 months.

  1. If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

Rid the world of negative people.

  1. What are your hobbies and passions?

Cycling, sport, car restoration, self-development and furniture making.

  1. How would you describe yourself?

Different every day.

  1. Do you have any pets and children?

Two pets; a dog, Pip and a cat, Coco.

Two boys called Archie (22) and Ethan (20).

  1. What is your favourite possession?

A pocket knife my dad bought me when I was 10, oh and my Milgauss.

  1. What is your favourite quote?

‘Whether or not one can live with one’s passions, whether or not one can accept their law, which is to burn the heart they simultaneously exalt, that is the whole question’. ~ Albert Camus.

  1. What motivates or inspires you?

My family, TED talks and Mrs Robinson my French teacher from 32 years ago.

  1. What are your goals for the future?

Three things; to retire financially at 55, to maintain a strong family bond and to experience as much as I can before my last breath.

  1. What do you love most about your job?

The challenge, and the team.

  1. Describe your biggest achievement to date

Making my mum proud of all of my crazy expeditions and getting my 1st Dan, which was bloody hard work.

  1. Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

Alan Sugar, Richard Branson and Edmund Hillary

  1. Why Matrix?

I like daily interaction. Being part of something that evolves and changes rather than a cog the system.  Plus its great working for the South Coast’s favourite IT company!



Why does your business need IT Support?

Why does your business need IT Support?

Why does your business need IT support? Depending on your company and its requirements, there are multiple ways that an outsourced IT department can help you. Whether you have 5 PCs and office phones or a whole server room and many users, this could benefit the quality of your network.

Services could include:

  • Emergency helpdesk support
  • Onsite maintenance visits
  • Hardware installation
  • Cybersecurity testing and upkeep
  • Systems, monitoring and patching
  • Office move assistance
  • Fully managed IT services
  • IT strategy planning

Having an IT support agreement can give you peace of mind that you can minimise technical faults and be able to resolve issues quickly.

It is standard for the majority of business employees to not have technical experience; IT Support works to educate employees as well as support them with any internal issues.

Are you planning on expanding your business? Employing more staff and extending your network? When planning your future business goals, IT Support is an important thing to consider.

At Matrix, we act as your ‘outsourced IT department’, providing help to businesses in Portsmouth, Fareham, Southampton and across the Hampshire region. To find out on how we can support your IT network, please contact a member of our team on 01329 888444 or email

Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s staff bio is Marco. Marco is our Senior IT Helpdesk engineer here at Matrix. Originally from South Africa, Marco moved to the UK in 2013 and joined Matrix in 2017.


  • What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT?

I am 37, born in Johannesburg South Africa and I have been a Senior IT Helpdesk engineer at Matrix for 2 years.

  • If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

Sort out all the nonsense that is happening in the world today.

  • What are your hobbies and passions?

Thankfully, my hobby is also my passion and that is to DJ. My other hobbies include playing golf, extreme sports and car racing.

  • How would you describe yourself?

Describe myself… Well, that’s a tough one. Outgoing, friendly and always striving to do better at any task that I carry out. Willing to help others when in need.

  • Do you have any pets and children?

I have no pets but I have one child, aged two and another child on the way, due in June of this year.

  • What is your favourite possession? 

This would be my first set of Dj turntables that I bought in 2000 which I still have.

  • What is your favourite quote?

‘I can’t means I can try’. My English school teacher told us that. Or, ‘nothing is impossible if you don’t try’.

  • What motivates or inspires you?

My family and positive recognition.

  • What are your goals for the future?

Continue to provide an income for my family.

  • What do you love most about your job?

Days keep you guessing what is next. Helping out engineers when stuck with an issue.

  • Describe your biggest achievement to date.

I have completed a Microsoft qualification which I was unable to do previously, due to financial issues. I have achieved a few things as a DJ and the biggest achievement of all is I got Married.

  • Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

My idol as a DJ: Ricardo Da Costa. My idol as a person:  My brother. Work hard and you will achieve greatness.

  • Why Matrix? 

Matrix is a great company to work for. The staff are great fun and always in good spirit. We all work great as a team and are always willing to get involved and assist when a colleague is stuck on an issue. There is always a great atmosphere even when we are super busy.

Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s staff bio is Lou, our Operations Director. She has been a loyal team member for twelve years. We hope you enjoy finding out a little bit more about the person behind the operation

  • What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT

Louise Gascoigne, Operations Director, 12 years at Matrix. Born in Aberdeen 😊

  • If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

I love music so I’d like to travel to as many cities in the world and watch a live band in each one.

  • What are your hobbies and passions?

My CV would say swimming and reading but really, it’s wine tasting.

  • How would you describe yourself?

Always busy! And funny, especially when I’m partaking in my hobby!

  • Do you have any pets and children?

I have a beautiful teenage daughter called Morgan and a gorgeous Jackapoo called Dudley.

He came along so at least someone would be pleased to see me!

  • What is your favourite possession?

My home, as that’s where I am the happiest.

  • What is your favourite quote?

One day your life will flash before your eyes, make sure it’s worth watching ~ Gerard Way

  • What motivates or inspires you?

I like a challenge as I can see the end goal and want to make sure I get there.

  • What are your goals for the future?

To live by my favourite quote and to make life more adventurous I am doing a Skydive on 6th April for charity.

  • What do you love most about your job?

Never a dull day, fast-paced changing environment and all the team get on well.

  • Describe your biggest achievement to date

I guess that would have to be starting as an administrator back in 2006 and being made a Director at Matrix in 2013.

  • Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

John Cronin, Co-founder of Matrix. He got me to where I am today.

  • Why Matrix?

Matrix started out as a family business and despite our growth, we’ve maintained that ethos and care about our staff and customers.


Inspirational Inventors

Inspirational Inventors

Steve Wozniak – 1976

Steve Wozniak born in 1950, was a Co-founder of the biggest global tech company, Apple. From a young boy, he had a growing passion for electronics and was further educated in this field. After meeting Ronald Wayne* through Steve Jobs in the early 1970’s, they planned together their venture in electronics.

Wozniak was the engineer behind the first ever Apple computer; ‘Apple I computer’. They sold it for $666.66 per unit and manufactured only 200 of them. This was a very basic computer with no power supply, monitor or casing sold with it. Regardless, this was the start of this now global enterprise.

Although Steve Wozniak is still on the payroll of Apple, he has invested in his own ventures. In 1990 he joined the ‘Electronic Frontier Foundation’, giving criminal computer hackers legal aid through prosecution. In 2002, Wozniak founded ‘Zeus’, a company that would develop Wireless GPS Technology.

*Ronald Wayne was the 3rd Co-founder of Apple. He is regularly dismissed, as a week after trading,he cashed out his shares for $800.

Inspirational Inventors

Inspirational Inventors

Steve Jobs – 1955

Steve Jobs born in 1955 was one the co-founders of Apple. Apple is a technology company founded in 1976, now ranked the largest technology company in the world.

Steve Jobs first taste of the industry was at HP where at 13 years old did a summer internship at the HP factory. Meeting through mutual friends in 1969, Steve Wozniak and Jobs bonded over their love for technology.

At 17 years old and Wozniak 22, they illegally built and sold ‘blue boxes’, a machine that would allow you to make phone calls for free. They later stopped after almost being caught. Both have stated that without doing this they would not have learnt the ‘power of ideas’ and would not have had the success they did.

In 1972 Jobs studied physics, poetry and literature at Reed College. Though, after 18 months dropped out to explore India where he grew a passion for Buddhism. Being a poetic and deep-thinking person, Jobs even hired a group of people. This group people solely studied the emotions of opening a box with an Apple product inside.

Steve Jobs persistently wanted to become CEO, however, he was labelled a difficulty to work. He was consequently ousted from the Macintosh group and was unable to have say in products. Jobs later became CEO in 1997 to reframe the product line. He stayed as CEO until 2011 when he sadly passed away from pancreatic cancer.

Christmas Cheers, hacking fears, don’t end up in tears.

Christmas Cheers, hacking fears, don’t end up in tears.

As Christmas approaches, amidst sore heads, panic buying for our partners and Brexit being all over the news, we now have to remember more passwords, to avoid our well earned money being syphoned out of our accounts through the internet.

The list below, whilst not exhaustive, gives you a good start at protecting yourself against a malicious attack.



  • Approval word or phrase– all staff who make payments within a business should have a secret authorisation word. This will ensure that any email asking for immediate payment will be vetted.
  • Beware of urgency – most scams will try and make you commit to payments, logging in, checking payments immediately. Take a step back, think and then decide if this is legitimate or fake.
  • Simple passwords – use something other than Pa55w0rd, Letme1N, or your pet dogs name.
  • Don’t click on links in email – go to the site and login (look for the https: too)
  • Data collection without you knowing it? For example, have you seen the Facebook quiz that’s asks you for your maiden name, middle name and pets name to reveal you hidden screen name.  Ever thought that someone may be collecting vital information that could compromise your login?

Most people use the same password for several accounts, giving hackers access to everything if your password is exposed.

Check to see if your password has been compromised?

Check to see if email address has been compromised?

The safest way to store all of your passwords is by using a password manager, there are several good services for this including 1Password, LastPass, Dashlane and RoboForm. These services store all login credentials in one highly secure vault for which you only have to remember one password. Ensure whichever password manager you use has multi factor authentication when setting up, as this will help prevent unauthorised access to your account and compromising your valuable data.

If you do nothing else this Christmas.

Ensure you have a data backup plan.  This means a copy of all your valuable data somewhere other than on your network.  Having a hard drive connected to your server is no longer a solution as crypto software will encrypt both the server and the hard drive.


We, at Matrix Business IT, hope you have found the above of use and wish you a very Merry Christmas.  We sincerely hope that your waist line is your worry at Christmas and not your online security.

Concerned? contact a member of the Matrix team on 01329 888444 or email

Apple announce fault in MacBook Pro hard drive

Apple announce fault in MacBook Pro hard drive

Do you have a potentially faulty MacBook Pro hard drive?

Apple have announced that some MacBook Pro owners are losing data due to hardware failure.  Any 128GB/256GB, non-touch bar, 13-inch MacBook Pro purchased between June 2017 and June 2018 are susceptible to this problem.

To prevent data loss Matrix has compiled three easy steps:

MacBook Pro Hard Drive Fault

1. Check on the Apple web site to see if your MacBook needs repairing.  Your serial number can be found in the top left corner of your menu bar and go to ‘About this mac’.  Once you have the serial number click here and check –

2. BEFORE YOU REPAIR, ensure that you have a backup of your Mac (

3. Arrange for Apple to repair (free) and then upon receipt of your fixed MacBook Pro you will need to restore your system from the backup (


If you need assistance establishing whether your device is at risk – or advice on backing up or restoring your data please contact a member of the Matrix team on 01329 888444 or email

Inspirational Inventors

Inspirational Inventors

Bill Gates – 1975

Bill Gates, born 1955 is the founder of Microsoft. With a passion for software and a natural ability for teaching, Bill Gates is the youngest person to ever become a billionaire.

In their later school days, Bill and Paul ran classes to teach other students computer programming. In 1970 at the age of 15, himself and Paul Allen designed a software that measured traffic flow in Seattle. This was their first venture and consequently netted $20,000.

At 18 years old, Gates attended Harvard Law School to follow the footsteps of his father as a lawyer. However, unsurprisingly his loyalty lied with programming. He dropped out of in 1975 to continue his journey with Paul Allen in the world of computing.

In 1975 Paul and Bill founded Microsoft. Although Allen came up with the name Microsoft, Bill did a majority of programming and planning and took the role of president whilst Allen was vice president.

Approximately 82.22% of computers and laptops have Microsoft software.


Inspirational Inventors

Inspirational Inventors

Tommy Flowers – 1944

Tommy Flowers, born in 1905 had a passion for machines and as a result studied an apprenticeship in mechanical engineering. Later he received his electrical engineering degree and began work at the British Post Office.

In 1941, Flowers began work with Alan Turing’s machine at Bletchley Park. From this began design on the Colossus. It was a machine that intercepted and decoded German messages in world war two. It worked 5 times faster than any previous code breakers.

This he did in his own time, with a lot of his own funding’s. We may not have won the war without the commitment, selflessness and bravery of Flowers. Through his vast knowledge and fascination for machines, he has been marked as ‘one of history’s most significant electrical engineers’.