Claritas Admin
27 September 2017
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Twenty years of Claritas – How have things changed from 1997 to 2017?

Claritas Solutions is twenty years old! We’re very proud to celebrate our milestone anniversary this year and look back fondly on twenty years of providing our clients with solutions to their every I.T. need.

Looking back on two decades got us thinking at Claritas HQ as to how much the landscape has changed in this time.

Therefore, we thought we’d take the opportunity to document some of the changes in I.T. and technology that have happened over the years since we first logged on all the way back in 1997.


1997 was an interesting year for the tech world. It was the year that saw the birth of Dolly the cloned sheep; internet traffic records were broken as NASA broadcast images taken by Pathfinder on Mars on its website and Tamagotchi, pocket tech pets, were top of Christmas lists.

This was also the year that Claritas first began trading from our very first office located in Sheepscar, nicknamed Neg 273 due to the lack of heating in the building!


The phenomenon that is Google opened its first office in California. Little did people know at the time but Google would become a search giant and a household name in the very near future.


Computer application Napster was invented by college student, Shawn Fanning. Napster allowed users to swap music over the World Wide Web. This type of technology went on and morphed in different ways, all resulting in bad news for the music industry’s value.


Friends Reunited was launched in the UK. It was the first major online social network in Britain and allowed people to reacquaint themselves with old school and Uni friends. By the end of 2005 it had 15 million members but sadly the website closed down in 2016 because of the decline in membership due to the increased popularity of other social networks.

The Millennium Bug proved to be a storm in a tea cup with very few computer failures reported as we moved into the year 2000. Companies worldwide made sure to check and upgrade their systems to address any problems prior to the date. RSS, a program that collects news from around the web and puts it in one place, was also created.

The year 2000 was also the year that Claritas’ now Development Director, Wesley Rowland, joined the company.


2001 was the year Wikipedia was born, and where would we be without it? Now Wikipedia is the go-to online encyclopaedia and receives an average of 269,708,074 visits per day.


Friendster, one of the early social networking sites was launched gaining three million users. Originally a social gaming site, Friendster allowed users to contact other members, share links, discover events and discuss hobbies.


Spam and unsolicited email became a server-clogging menace and in 2003 it accounted for about half of all emails.

Technical Director Derek Baker, joined Claritas bringing with him a wealth of experience from the world of electronics.


Facebook was launched on 4th February by Mark Zuckerberg and his Harvard peers. Now the most popular social networking site in the world, Facebook has 2 billion monthly active users.

The MyDoom or Novarg Internet worm made the news as it spread through servers. It is reported that around 1 in 12 email messages were infected.


YouTube was launched and the very first video was uploaded on 23 April 2005. Today’s figures show that an astonishing 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute.


Twitter was born with founder Jack Dorsey sending the first tweet, reading: “just setting up my twttr”. Nowadays the site receives 500 million tweets per day, has an estimated 313 million monthly active users and 20 million fake users!


Apple announced its first iPhone on January 9th. The iPhone would go on to integrate itself into popular culture, selling in huge numbers. In Q3 of 2017, ten years later, Apple sold 41.026 million iPhones.


Google released the first public version of Google Chrome. According to StatCounter in 2016, Google Chrome is now the most used browser, claiming more than half the market. 2008 also saw The National Cybersecurity Centre founded in the US.


Popular online funding platform Kickstarter was created and the death of Michael Jackson resulted in some of the internet’s biggest gossip sites crashing due to a surge in traffic. Celebrity news sites such as and Perez Hilton were temporarily down in the wake of the news whilst social media was abuzz.

Also in 2009, Internet currency Bitcoin was introduced to the world for the first time on January 3rd.


Amazon issued a press release which stated it was now selling more Kindle books than hardcover. Social media giant Instagram was launched in October 2010 and Apple introduced its very first iPad.


Microsoft introduced Office 365 and also acquired Skype for $8.5 billion. In 2016 Microsoft revealed there were 60 million monthly active Office 365 commercial customers and that it had seen 50,000 small business customers added to Office 365 each month.


In August, 2012 Saudi Aramco became the victim of the largest cyber-attack of its time. Data from at least 35,000 computers was partially or totally wiped out and the company’s network did not come back online until five months later.


Another year and another cyber-attack. On March 29, 2013 a massive DDoS attack targeted The Spamhaus Project. Playstation and Xbox also unveiled plans for their new consoles, PS4 and Xbox One respectively.


Nokia became part of Microsoft Mobile in a deal worth $7.17 billion. In the same year Claritas moved offices from Bowcliffe Hall in Wetherby to its current premises at Brookfield Court in Leeds. 2014 was also the year that Claritas started to work with the Home Office and gained Check Point 3* partnership status. Kirsty Sutton also joined the company as Financial Director in this year.


Microsoft released its latest program, Windows 10 the same year as Claritas became a Microsoft Certified Silver Partner. Notable new product launches included the Amazon Echo and the Apple Watch.


Yahoo confirmed that in 2014 the account information of approximately 500 million users was stolen by hackers. Otto and Budweiser completed the world’s first shipment by a self-driving truck.


On May 12, 2017 the WannaCry ransomware started to attack computers running Microsoft Windows. More than 230,000 computers in over 150 different countries were affected including the NHS.

It’s clear to see that a lot has changed in the twenty years since we started business. Technology has got more advanced and in many cases smaller (iPhone). Global cyber-security is undoubtedly better than ever but the cyber threat is unfortunately greater, it simply hasn’t gone away as criminals advance their methods.

It means that we at Claritas must stay ahead of the times, always looking at what’s next. The technology we operate with day to day is quicker, smoother and more efficient than it was in 1997 but it needs to be to deal with potential problems that may occur.

We’ve provided our clients with solutions that are tailored to them for the past twenty years and we pride ourselves on our reliability. We just might benefit your business, so why not get in touch? Who knows, we may just work with you for the next twenty.