Category Archives: Cloud Computing

IBM Launches Cloud Services for Blockchain on Industry’s Most Secure Server

IBM Launches Cloud Services for Blockchain on Industry’s Most Secure Server

IBM Launches Cloud Services For Blockchain

New cloud environment for business-to-business networks allows companies to test performance, privacy and interoperability of blockchain ecosystems

ARMONK, N.Y., July 14, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced a cloud service for organizations requiring a secure environment for blockchain networks. Ideal for organizations in regulated industries, this environment allows clients to test and run blockchain projects that handle private data.

IBM’s secure blockchain cloud environment, underpinned by IBM LinuxONE, the industry’s most secure Linux-only server, is ideal for organizations such as Everledger, a company that tracks and protects diamonds and other valuables via the blockchain. Everledger is building a digital business network using IBM Blockchain to power its global certification system to track valuable items through the supply chain, helping to protect suppliers, buyers and shippers against theft, counterfeiting and other forms of corruption. The blockchain is used to demonstrate the origin of high-value goods such as diamonds, fine art and luxury goods.

IBM LinuxONE, the industry’s most secure Linux-only system, powers the IBM Blockchain environment for business networks on Bluemix. Blockchain security is critical — not just within the network itself, but with all technology that touches the ledger. With the secure infrastructure that underpins the new environment, companies can run blockchain tests in a secure, partitioned environment that not even network administrators can access.

When you are in the business of provenance, secured records, access and transparency are everything. There is no compromise when it comes to security and one cannot underestimate the expertise required to enable this,” said Leanne Kemp, CEO and Founder of Everledger. “Having the opportunity to build, test, scale and refine Everledger on IBM Blockchain, underpinned by a security-rich infrastructure, is a game changer. It has accelerated our ability to move fast and deliver the most innovative solutions to our partners internationally and confidentially.”

As blockchain grows in influence and organizations begin to evaluate cloud-based production environments for their first blockchain projects, they are exploring ways to maximize the security and compliance of the technology for business-critical applications. The average total cost of a data breach for enterprises reached $4 million last year, and with security incidents up by 64 percent in 2015, the risks are higher than ever. Security is critical – not just within the blockchain itself but with all the technology touching the ledger.

The business network on the IBM Blockchain cloud environment helps secure entry points and fight against insider threats. With advanced features that help protect data and ensure the integrity of the overall network, LinuxONE is designed to meet the stringent security requirements of the financial, health care and government sectors, helping to foster compliance.

Blockchain will change the way we transfer high value goods, digital assets and financial instruments. To accelerate blockchain adoption, clients must trust the infrastructure and the system that blockchain is running on,” said Donna Dillenberger, IBM Fellow, Enterprise Solutions. “With IBM Blockchain, we are expanding access to the emerging technology — not only by making it easy to get up and running on the IBM Cloud, but also by using the most secure infrastructure.”

Currently in limited beta, these new secure cloud services to run blockchain in a production environment allow clients to quickly and easily access a secure, partitioned blockchain network to deploy, test and run projects. Clients can sign up here. The latest version of IBM Blockchain is available today through Bluemix.

To learn more about IBM Blockchain visit www.ibm.com/blockchain.

Addressing Security, Quality and Governance of Big Data

Addressing Security, Quality and Governance of Big Data

Addressing Data Quality

Article sponsored by SAS Software and Big Data Forum

Big Data is quickly being recognized as a valuable influencer of business strategy, able to improve productivity, streamline business processes, and reduce costs. However, not all data holds the same value and organizations need to take care to address the quality of the data they’re exploiting, while carefully managing security and governance concerns.

Data Quality

Blindly trusting business reports to be based on sound and quality information can lead not only to embarrassment but also business decline should the foundational data be found lacking. For this reason ensuring the data your organization employs in its analytics and reporting is of both relevant and high quality is of the utmost importance. While only using high-quality data is a sound principle, it is a case more easily said than done. Understanding where data originated, who has control and accountability for it, and precisely what the quality standards of your organization’s data should be, are significant tasks that must be undertaken. Moreover, while software exists which helps with data correction and error analysis, such tools only address part of the problem. To best meet the challenge of ensuring high-quality data, businesses need to implement a plan that helps identify quality issues, chase down the causes, and create problem resolution strategies.

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Carol Newcomb, Senior Data Management Consultant at SAS, suggests a sustainable plan for managing data quality, warning that the process is not likely to be simple and including many steps such as the implementation of rules for collecting or creating data, data standardization and summarization rules, data integration rules with other sources of data, and hierarchy management.

Newcomb asserts that an effective, sustainable data quality plan should include the following five elements:

  • Elevate the visibility and importance of data quality.
  • Formalize decision making through a data governance program.
  • Document the data quality issues, business rules, standards and policies for data correction.
  • Clarify accountability for data quality.
  • Applaud your successes.

Considering reports from Gartner analysts that by 2017, one-third of the world’s largest companies will experience information crises due to an inability to adequately value, govern and trust their enterprise information, it’s crucial that businesses put data quality programs in place.

Data Regulations, Security & Privacy

The ITRC’s latest Data Breach Report points to 500 data breaches in the first half this year with more than 12 million records compromised. Such breaches expose Social Security numbers, medical records, financial information and more, putting individuals at risk. It’s no wonder privacy is such a concern as the mountains of data increase exponentially day by day. Though the ability to track customers and predict future behaviors is of great benefit to many companies, it’s a trade-off for most consumers as privacy is eclipsed by the convenience and assistance that data analysis and prediction provides. And although organizations such as Google promise data anonymization, it’s impossible to know how carefully our privacy is guarded, while the increasing popularity of the Internet of Things means our engagement with the internet and data collection is only escalating.

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(Image Source: Shutterstock)

This extensive data does offer many noble assistances, not least of all patient monitoring for superior and prompt medical care, and real-time data utilization in classrooms ensuring education systems are functioning efficiently. And so perhaps data governance and regulation can help mitigate the risks without abandoning the rewards. States Scott Koegler of Big Data Forum, “Pulling actionable but protected data is key to developing advanced business practices while protecting customer identity.” A ‘Zero Trust Data’ policy is a potential solution wherein access to data is denied by default and always requires verification. In this way, data is made available to those legitimately requesting it, but information is correctly de-identified.

By designing efficient data management policies and properly adhering to regulations, companies are able to reap the benefits of Big Data without infringing on the privacy and security of individuals’ data. Furthermore, applying quality control systems to data collection and management enhances the value businesses draw from their data without needlessly breaching confidentiality. Ultimately, the time expended in data security, quality, and governance benefits the businesses who use it as well as the individuals and communities to whom it relates.

By Jennifer Klostermann

IoTT, The Internet of Things, Tomorrow

IoTT, The Internet of Things, Tomorrow

What Should Your Home Be Telling You?

Home. The place where you lay your head to sleep, where a roof of some form protects you. It’s where you leave the things that are valuable to you as you head off each day to live your life. If you were to strike up a conversation with your home about its day, what information would you like your home to convey to you? How would you like to get that information? These walls can’t talk.

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(Infographic Source: deloitte.com)

There is a value to real time information, things you want to know about as soon as possible. Examples of this from your house would be things like smoke detection and security. You need to know right away if your house is on fire or someone is trying to break in. Critical information should be delivered using a persistent messaging system that won’t stop until you verify receipt. Think of what a great excuse you’ll always have: “I am sorry I have to leave this very exciting meeting because my home is paging me that someone is trying to break into the house.” Forget those fake phone calls and made up excuses.

Less critical conversations can also take place, informing you of what’s in the refrigerator and even information on the products inside. Imagine being at the grocery store and being able to remotely look inside of your refrigerator. Refrigerators of today feature cameras inside as well as barcode readers that can tell you specific information about products like expiration date, price, nutritional information, product reviews, and more.

With the Internet of Things, you’ll never forget the milk again.

IoT-CloudTweaks-Comic

Given these preliminary conversations, what should your house be talking to you about?

  • Home Security – remote connection to video surveillance systems and sensors
  • Critical information – Fire alarms, burglar alarms, leaking pipes, electrical outages and other critical pieces of information
  • Home Information – Non-essential information like replacing air and furnace filters, refilling the egg tray, temperature, energy use, and pet-information
  • Environmental Information – Particulate and dust levels in the air, CO2, Radon, and other harmful gas detection

All of these home information systems are available today via their individual systems. What the Internet of Things will do is provide seamless control and notification across all aspects of your home’s functions, in a single platform. This will soon become a reality, so get used to receiving text messages from your house. It all sounds useful until your house starts sending you Baseball picks and you’re forced to write a book: “Conversations with my House: Why I stopped Changing my Furnace Filter.

By Scott Andersen

Steps To Ensure A Successful Cloud IAM Environment

Steps To Ensure A Successful Cloud IAM Environment

Cloud IAM Environment

Sales and implementations of identity and access management (IAM) solutions have drastically increased over the last couple of years as the solutions have become the standard bearer for organization’s access and security. This is primarily because organizations in every industry and their leaders are realizing how beneficial they can be. Instead of using their older, out-of-date manual processes to manage user accounts and passwords, IAM solutions allow for automation of the entire user account lifecycle.

As there has been, of course, a dramatic increase in the use of cloud applications, organizations need to have a method to easily manage both cloud systems and their in-house applications. A cloud IAM environment will ensure that the company is efficiently automating its account management lifecycle for both in house and cloud applications so that only one solution is needed.

If your organization is still using manual processes and is beginning to look at IAM solutions and how they can help your company, it is beneficial to know what a successful cloud IAM environment is and the basic steps and considerations your organization should contemplate to achieve a successful implementation. Here is a brief overview of what to consider when beginning to look at vendors and implementing an IAM solution.

IAM Considerations

The first step would be to find a vendor that offers an IAM solution that will work well with the needs of your organization. Your organization should make a list of all important process that they are performing manually, as well as any issues that they need to have solution in place so that you know exactly what your top priorities are.

Popular SaaS Applications

(Image Source: Interxion)

You should then make a list of all of the applications that the company uses, both cloud and in house. It needs to be guaranteed that the vendor you are working with can build, or has a connector to, these cloud applications.

The organization can then begin conducting research on what type of solutions are needed to solve some of your top concerns and issues. Identity and access management, as a term, covers multiple components, solutions and modules. Here are a few of the main components, as well as what can be achieved with a successful cloud IAM environment.

  • Account Management — This is the management of creating accounts, making changes when necessary and disabling accounts once the end user is no longer working at the organization. A source system, such as HR, is connected with all cloud and in-house applications that your organization utilizes. This allows any change made in the source system to be automatically reflected in all connected systems, so that no manual actions need to be made. For example, when a new employee is on boarded, their information is simply entered into the HR system and accounts in every application they need will automatically be generated for them, without needing human intervention.
  • Role-based Access Control/Access Management — This is the management of access rights. Within an organization, there are many different types and levels of access that employees may require, and they all need to have access to the correct systems and applications. Just as with in-house applications, it is important that users have the exact access they need in cloud applications. This component not only ensures that access is correct, it can also assist with the automation of account change requests. For example, an employee can request an access change via a portal and the request is automatically routed to the correct manager for approval. Once approved, the change will automatically be carried out within the network or appropriate application.
  • Compliance Management — This component is used to monitor what is taking place in the IT infrastructure and making the changes where appropriate. Some organizations may want to monitor who has access to what and may need to comply with certain rules and regulations. Many cloud IAM vendors allow for admins to easily generate a report of exactly who is accessing which applications and what changes they are making. This is beneficial in two ways: First, it allows the organization to ensure security and provide an easy trail for audit reasons, and second, this also allows them to easily see which applications are actually being used for licensing reasons. The organizations may be paying for expensive licenses to applications that users aren’t even accessing. Reporting such as this keeps the network and cloud secure and accurate.
  • Password/Authentication Management — This component is the management of the user’s credentials for accessing the applications they need. It also encompasses certain solutions used to make the login procedure both more convenient for the user, as well as more secure. One of these is a web-based single sign-on (SSO) solution to allow end users to easily access cloud applications. Users simply access a portal where all of their available applications are located. They provide a single set of credentials for authentication to the portal and can then access any of their applications by simply clicking on an icon. This allows them to easily access their applications from anywhere that they are working, whether inside or outside of the company’s network. Many vendors also offer the ability for users to download an app on their device and the app will prompt the user to enter the single set of credentials to get to a portal where they can access their applications. This is extremely convenient for users who are using tablets or smartphones.

The next step is to decide which of these components you need and in what order of importance. Many IAM vendors are very flexible and will allow your organization the opportunity to customize your solution and implementation to meet your company’s needs and timeframe. Often, organizations are nervous about an IAM solution because they fear that such solutions can be costly and timely to implement, taking money from other important budgets. This is actually a misconception that many have. When an IAM implementation is done in modules or phases, the sponsoring organization can choose to purchase only those that they need. They can then also choose to implement the most important aspects of such solutions first.

Information Security

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Another factor to consider is the security of the network. Your organization might want to work with the vendor to ensure certain extra security measures, or tailor the solution based on the industry you work in or the data you handle.

Certain modules in an IAM solution already increase security dramatically without any extra measures. For example, the web SSO component allows users on the go to login with one single password to access a portal of all of their cloud applications. This not only improves efficiency; it also helps with security since it eliminates the need of end users to write down their passwords.

If security is a top priority, though, certain features can be added, such as two-factor authentication to the password solutions. This requires a user to provide, for example, a password and another form of identification, such as a finger scan or PIN to further validate they are the correct user.

Overall, a successful cloud IAM environment will allow your organization to easily and efficiently manage cloud applications, and in-house applications, while also increasing organizational security. Your organization should use these basic guidelines to find a vendor that works best for their organization.

By Dean Wiech

Microsoft And General Electric Partnership A Big Step For The Industrial IoT

Microsoft And General Electric Partnership A Big Step For The Industrial IoT

Microsoft and General Electric

It was recently revealed that Microsoft and General Electric (GE) would partner up to bring GE’s Predix software to the Microsoft cloud, Azure.

Predix is an industrial Internet of Things (IoT) platform or a cloud-based platform-as-a-service (PaaS) that will allow industrial machinery to connect to the Internet. Rather than increasing home and personal connectivity where the focus on IoT is often placed, GE is hoping to use the Predix platform to better catalyze the effort of industrial organizations in creating IoT networks. To this end it ensures that most devices used in an industrial contexts can be standardized, monitored and optimized more easily and effectively. It will also help in collating massive amounts of data, saving both time and money in the industry.

The move by GE to make Predix widely available is not new. Prior to the partnership with Microsoft, it was available to be run on Amazon or Oracle’s clouds. However, partnering with Microsoft is a significant event that is mutually beneficial to both parties. For Microsoft, the hope is that more industrial users will begin to use Azure. For GE it highlights their “software ambitions” as opposed to purely industrial ones, estimating $6 billion in digital revenue for 2016, in which Predix plays a crucial role. According to GE CEO Jeff Immelt, they see “in Azure, not only a great cloud technology and [the] ability to globalize quickly. But, it’s a platform on which other platforms can go.” Moreover, that the “relationship…with Microsoft will allow [GE] to move more quickly in places that are important for use, which is really all over the world.”

Beyond what the partnership means for the two companies however, is what it means for the wider public. The partnership is ultimately a part of a large movement towards the IoT. It has been predicted that by 2020 close to 21 billion devices could be connected and in use in the IoT. Of this, a third will be used in business.

By Jason de Klerk

Smart Cities And The Enthusiasm For Technological Advancement

Smart Cities And The Enthusiasm For Technological Advancement

Embracing Smart City Innovation

In research studies from IHS and Frost & Sullivan, it’s suggested that by 2025 approximately half of the world’s smart cities will be located outside of America and Europe, the advantaged territories that currently boast the highest concentration. Already well on its way, the Middle East has seen the development of its own smart cities as Tel Aviv delivers personalized city services to its citizens through its data analytics program Digi-tel, and Dubai aims to be the world’s smartest city by 2017.

Smart Cities a Necessity in the Middle East

By 2050, it’s expected that populations in the Middle East will double and urbanization rates may reach 70%. With Gulf countries already urbanized above 80%, infrastructure congestion is problematic, and governments are looking for ways to better manage transport, water, and energy service use. Smart cities, therefore, provide an attraction both through the enthusiasm for technological advancement as well as the possibilities for better urban management. Already the World Expo and World Cup to be held in 2020 and 2022 respectively are motivating hosts UAE and Qatar to advance their cities’ developments, though the risk of rushed tasks could mean inadequate Big Data implementations.

Developing Smart City Solutions

smart-cities-cloud

Dr. Elie Chachoua, tackling the logistics of smart cities with the World Economic Forum, considers the issue of who will be developing smart city solutions a subject worth addressing. Early on in the transformation, partnerships with infrastructure providers help governments access the services needed, but as the space becomes more competitive, partnerships with international vendors will likely drive developments. By 2025, it’s forecast that the smart city sector will see investments of up to $175 billion and we’ll have the likes of Cisco, a traditional cloud and IT infrastructure provider, as well as telecom companies such as Huawei and infrastructure providers like GE competing in the market. Suggests Chachoua, “For cities interested in becoming smart, such partnerships with international vendors can be a good way to build on international best practices while benchmarking performance against other cities in which the vendor might be working too.”

Big Data & Accessibility

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(Image Source: Shutterstock)

Open data policies could play a significant role in well-functioning smart cities, and says Mira Marcus, international press director at Tel Aviv Global, “The first thing we did was open our municipal database. Data is the basis for so many start-ups!” In Tel Aviv, collaborations with startups such as Waze are addressing traffic and congestion issues, and a startup accelerator financed by the city is targeting the development of smart city solutions. Another example of such support is the Center of Excellence in Smart, Sustainable and Entrepreneurial Cities at Abu Dhabi University, a $1.6 million initiative in the Abu Dhabi emirate that opened in September last year.

However, José Quádrio Alves, global government director, Future Cities Program Leader at CGI, believes that Middle Eastern countries will have to make their data even more accessible. He explains, “A trend we see in many cities [of other regions] is the move from defining what qualifies as open data to defining what data cannot be open data. The assumption now is that, by default, all data should be opened.” Though many Middle Eastern countries are currently low in the global open data rankings, progress is being made to share and open data between government agencies and third party users, and it’s suggested that in the future open data from the private sector as well as the government will encourage advancement.

Though privacy and security concerns remain, the smart city advances taking place are already benefiting the region and the innovative solutions being implemented continue to drive motivation and transformation.

By Jennifer Klostermann

Passwords and Pokémon: Should I Link My Account?

Passwords and Pokémon: Should I Link My Account?

Passwords and Pokémon

If you’ve used the Internet in the 21st century, you’ve probably been asked to create an account to use a website or app’s services. Generally they require a password and active email account. Now many allow you to log in with details from other common accounts such as Google or Facebook. This allows for interconnectedness and consistency across our online persona. Usually the information the sites or services access is made clear before you go on. They’ll want access to your friend list, mail contacts or Facebook likes. At most they’ll want to see your photos but won’t do anything without your permission. It’s minimal so we clip accept and proceed. However, the real extent of this access remains unclear.

One real danger of this practice is when hackers obtain users’ login details. For instance, it was revealed that over 65 million Tumblr users’ passwords were released in a 2013 data breach by hackers. In 2016, hackers attempted to sell over 400 million MySpace passwords. The same hackers also tried to sell LinkedIn emails and passwords.

pokemon passwords

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

What does this mean for a person with interconnected accounts? The concern here is that where a person has the same login details for all their accounts, or their accounts are all linked, a breach of the data of one website could result in unlimited access to a user’s other accounts. Most of the time when connecting accounts, access to passwords is excluded. Of course, the main denominator accounts such as Google have their own measures in place to prevent a data breach of this kind.

Then came last week’s release of Pokémon Go, a virtual-reality mobile game, which shook the Internet with users already surpassing those of Twitter. Already the security issues are being raised, the most concerning being for those who created their accounts using their Google accounts. Users of the game became aware that signing in with Google, as so many iPhone users had done, gave the app and its company, Niantic, full access to their accounts. This means that the app could even read and write emails on behalf of one of its users, in addition to viewing their search history, private photos and Google Docs.

While some have said that they “don’t think Niantic are planning some global personal information heist”, the mere fact that they have the ability and access to such personal information is uncomfortable. And while Niantic was once a part of Google, which could make this access a non-issue, they became a separate company last year.

So, if you want to avoid the inconvenience of having to change all of your passwords every time there is a data breach of one account, it’s probably best to create accounts with different login details. And if you’re one of the unfortunate Pokémon Go users that has already logged in with their Google account, I would advise removing the app’s permissions here.

By Jason de Klerk

The Rise Of BI Data And How To Use It Effectively

The Rise Of BI Data And How To Use It Effectively

The Rise of BI Data

Every few years, a new concept or technological development is introduced that drastically improves the business world as a whole.

In 1983, the first commercially handheld mobile phone debuted and provided workers with an unprecedented amount of availability, leading to more productivity and profits.

More recently, the Cloud has taken availability far beyond the simple act of voice-to-voice communication, allowing businesses to untether employees from their desks and give them virtually unlimited access to the software and storage space they need to do their jobs.

The use of business intelligence (BI) tools to turn raw data into useful information is the latest trend to sweep the business world. According to a recent survey, since 2012, 71% of businesses have started using BI data to address business needs.

This sudden popularity of BI data raises a few questions. Why are businesses so interested in BI? How can they use data analytics tools effectively? How do businesses across different industries use BI data?

Explaining the Rise of BI

There are three driving forces behind the recent uptick in BI data usage.

  1. The Buzzword Factor

The need to “keep up with the Joneses” is not exclusive to suburbanites buying bigger TVs and newer cars just because their neighbors are doing so. Business executives also feel pressure to keep up with their competitors.

There’s so much chatter about BI data. There’s a lot of pressure on corporate managers to be involved or at least have an answer when their senior management asks, ‘Where are we with that?’”

— John Keenan, Founder and CEO, Anthem Marketing Solutions

Even though business technology trends sometimes fall flat, lagging behind on the next big thing could mean missing out on a revenue generating opportunity.

  1. Businesses Are Beginning to See the Value of BI

The buzzword factor is important, but there’s much more to the rise of BI data. Businesses are beginning to recognize the array of benefits this type of data offers. In fact, 86% of data analytics users say BI data is important to their company.

BI Data

(Image Source: Clutch.co)

BI data takes the guesswork out of making business decisions. It provides an unprecedented level of insight into how the average customer thinks and behaves.

  1. Self-Service Analytics Tools Are More Accessible

Even though the benefits of BI data were apparent before wide-scale adoption in 2012, the tools needed to analyze the data were often costly, especially for smaller businesses. For example, advanced analytics solutions, require extensive training to operate effectively. But, with more self-service analytics tools entering the market, it has become more affordable for businesses to organize and make sense of the data they collect.

As self-service functionality has evolved, the adoption rates for BI tools have been much higher. The reason is that IT has been stretched beyond belief. Demand has gone up for IT services, but budgets have gone down… There aren’t enough resources.

— Carl Paluszkiewicz, Director of Customer Value, Denologix

How to Use BI Tools Effectively

Anyone can collect information, but not every business understands how to organize, analyze, and apply the data effectively. It is necessary to implement a clear strategy before investing in BI tools. For example, an advanced analytics tool is not a good fit for a small business seeking to visualize its performance metrics better.

I got an RFP the other day from a customer doing basic data analysis on their desktop. They thought it would be good to implement a Hadoop Cluster. While they need a better system to manage their data, they don’t need to go from a very basic environment to a Big Data tool. It’s overkill.”

— Laura Squier, Director of Advanced Analytics and Business Development, QueBIT

How Businesses Across Industries Use BI Data

How are companies using their BI data to improve their business?

Case Study 1: BI Data in the Restaurant Industry

A restaurant chain uses promotions to attract and retain customers, and the restaurant wants to know whether using promotions is a successful strategy for increasing their revenue. They look at customer data, such as how much they spend in the restaurant and on what items. But, they do not know how their promotions influence food choice and spending. Analyzing internal data reveals gaps in their promotion strategy. They do not promote specific products on the menu or menu categories. They do not adjust menu options for different regions.

John Keenan of Anthem Marketing Solutions, gives some examples of other data points to consider:

  • How much should you focus on photos and descriptions of menu items?
  • Does changing the photos and descriptions affect sales?
  • Does altering the menu to match tastes in different locations attract more customers?

Case Study 2: BI Data in the Automotive Retail Marketing

A store that sells car parts uses BI data for demand planning and forecasting. This involves identifying which types of vehicles are most popular in each region. A store that sells car parts uses BI data for demand planning and forecasting. This involves identifying which types of vehicles are most popular in each region. Then, the retailer can select the parts to stock based on which cars local customers drive.

Organizations can get tremendous value from having the right product in stock at the right time.

— Laura Squier, QueBIT

The Big Picture

We are drowning in data. There is more written content in a single issue of the New York Times than the average person from the 1800s would have read in a lifetime.  And, every two days we create as much information as we did in all of human history up to 2003, according to Alphabet, Inc. Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt.

As analytics tools’ capabilities continue to advance, businesses will be able to apply the data they collect in new ways, resulting in increased efficiency and productivity.

By Sarah Patrick

CloudTweaks Comics
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The Rise Of BI Data And How To Use It Effectively

The Rise Of BI Data And How To Use It Effectively

The Rise of BI Data Every few years, a new concept or technological development is introduced that drastically improves the business world as a whole. In 1983, the first commercially handheld mobile phone debuted and provided workers with an unprecedented amount of availability, leading to more productivity and profits. More recently, the Cloud has taken…

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How Data Science And Machine Learning Is Enabling Cloud Threat Protection

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7 Common Cloud Security Missteps

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5% Of Companies Have Embraced The Digital Innovation Fostered By Cloud Computing

5% Of Companies Have Embraced The Digital Innovation Fostered By Cloud Computing

Embracing The Cloud We love the stories of big complacent industry leaders having their positions sledge hammered by nimble cloud-based competitors. Saleforce.com chews up Oracle’s CRM business. Airbnb has a bigger market cap than Marriott. Amazon crushes Walmart (and pretty much every other retailer). We say: “How could they have not seen this coming?” But, more…

Technology Influencer in Chief: 5 Steps to Success for Today’s CMOs

Technology Influencer in Chief: 5 Steps to Success for Today’s CMOs

Success for Today’s CMOs Being a CMO is an exhilarating experience – it’s a lot like running a triathlon and then following it with a base jump. Not only do you play an active role in building a company and brand, but the decisions you make have direct impact on the company’s business outcomes for…

Three Reasons Cloud Adoption Can Close The Federal Government’s Tech Gap

Three Reasons Cloud Adoption Can Close The Federal Government’s Tech Gap

Federal Government Cloud Adoption No one has ever accused the U.S. government of being technologically savvy. Aging software, systems and processes, internal politics, restricted budgets and a cultural resistance to change have set the federal sector years behind its private sector counterparts. Data and information security concerns have also been a major contributing factor inhibiting the…

What the Dyn DDoS Attacks Taught Us About Cloud-Only EFSS

What the Dyn DDoS Attacks Taught Us About Cloud-Only EFSS

DDoS Attacks October 21st, 2016 went into the annals of Internet history for the large scale Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks that made popular Internet properties like Twitter, SoundCloud, Spotify and Box inaccessible to many users in the US. The DDoS attack happened in three waves targeting DNS service provider Dyn, resulting in a total of about…

Using Private Cloud Architecture For Multi-Tier Applications

Using Private Cloud Architecture For Multi-Tier Applications

Cloud Architecture These days, Multi-Tier Applications are the norm. From SharePoint’s front-end/back-end configuration, to LAMP-based websites using multiple servers to handle different functions, a multitude of apps require public and private-facing components to work in tandem. Placing these apps in entirely public-facing platforms and networks simplifies the process, but at the cost of security vulnerabilities. Locating everything…

Three Factors For Choosing Your Long-term Cloud Strategy

Three Factors For Choosing Your Long-term Cloud Strategy

Choosing Your Long-term Cloud Strategy A few weeks ago I visited the global headquarters of a large multi-national company to discuss cloud strategy with the CIO. I arrived 30 minutes early and took a tour of the area where the marketing team showcased their award winning brands. I was impressed by the digital marketing strategy…

The Future Of Cloud Storage And Sharing…

The Future Of Cloud Storage And Sharing…

Box.net, Amazon Cloud Drive The online (or cloud) storage business has always been a really interesting industry. When we started Box in 2005, it was a somewhat untouchable category of technology, perceived to be a commodity service with low margins and little consumer willingness to pay. All three of these factors remain today, but with…

3 Keys To Keeping Your Online Data Accessible

3 Keys To Keeping Your Online Data Accessible

Online Data Data storage is often a real headache for businesses. Additionally, the shift to the cloud in response to storage challenges has caused security teams to struggle to reorient, leaving 49 percent of organizations doubting their experts’ ability to adapt. Even so, decision makers should not put off moving from old legacy systems to…