Category Archives: Security

Brand Identity Is Now The Crux Of Technology And Business

Brand Identity Is Now The Crux Of Technology And Business

Identity, Technology and Business

When Tim Cook and Apple pushed back against the FBI’s iPhone hack request, the resulting conflict hit on where we are, and where we’re going, with technology and business. It’s not just about useful tools people can use for convenience and entertainment anymore. It’s about identity.

Apple pushed back because the hack represents an intrusion on privacy. Hacking Syed Farook’s phone provides a direct window on who he is. This would open a wormhole to other iPhone users, too. Now, Apple wants to know how an anonymous third party was able to hack the phone.

Should Apple’s technology, or any sort of tech, protect identities from prying eyes? Or should people’s identities be fair game for organizations that want to use them? So far we’ve seen more of the latter.

Power and Liquidity of Identity

This has been brewing for a while. Businesses and customers both have a stake. Consumer identity has become a commodity. Every touch-point in high-tech commerce hinges on who the customer is. Business and consumer alike trade in the power and liquidity of identity.

identity-theft

First, an example of how the identity protection issue is playing out for American businesses, in a very concrete way. According to Square’s guide to EMV (Europay Mastercard Visa), “Almost half of the world’s credit card fraud happens in the United States.” As a result, businesses must switch to a new “processing device” that will accept EMV cards. You’ve probably seen local businesses that have complied, some that haven’t.

Because of the new EMV requirement, if someone commits credit card fraud with a magnetic stripe card, the business is liable. Credit card fraud is identity theft. Now businesses have to protect customer identity by staying technologically relevant.

Is this appropriate, or ironic? Businesses trade in customer identity, oftentimes without giving the customer a choice; now they don’t have any choice but to protect the identities they trade in.

Analyzing customer preferences, location data, spending habits, and other factors linked to who you are is a part of tech-savvy marketing and sales. Consumer data is a hot item—the topic doesn’t just come up on marketing blogs.

Appnovation is a web development company with a blog post titled “Integrating Customer Data into Your Business Decisions“. The author (whose last name isn’t provided—apparently they wanted to protect his identity) says, “If good information promotes growth and growth allows for success, why doesn’t every organization just do it?” He’s not merely observing the trendy practice of using customer data to grow business—he’s promoting it. There’s technology for tracking “customer experience and actions”, which gives the business an advantage. According to the author, “The insights and data from your analytics product do more than predict and hone customer behavior, they can be a window into your infrastructure’s current health.”

This final statement holds the key to the commoditization of identity. To the observer, what we do determines who we are. And now, what we do, including what we post online and the sites we visit, directly influences business determinations. They want to “hone and influence our behavior”, but that behavior also plays into how a business views itself. Even further than that—consumer behavior determines a business brand’s identity.

Consumers Dictating Brand Messaging

consumer-focus

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

Base Creative is an international branding agency. Their brand strategist and senior writer, Rod Parkes, has this to say about the evolving meaning of brands:

The brand owner can no longer dictate the meaning of the brand – the customer defines this, and today’s customers cannot be so easily told what to think. From Amazon to TripAdvisor, websites and social media enable the experience of others to help shape the potential purchaser’s perceptions.”

Web technology—primarily social media and peer reviews—gives consumers the same type of power businesses want to have over them. It’s the power to determine what an entity will do.

Consumer perception and the intersection of technology create a fluid, relative identity for brands, because brands must react to consumer perception. They’re watching us, we’re watching them, and on either side we’re making decisions based on our observations. It’s a dynamic feedback loop.

Personalization 

This relationship between identity, technology, and power is reflected in the trends to watch in 2016. Dynamic personalization, in which brands analyze data to market directly to individuals, reportedly delivers ROI (Return on Investment) five to eight times greater than non-personalized efforts. Personalization is also estimated to boost sales by ten percent. At least ninety percent of the time, though, consumers conduct their own research before they buy something. Brands want to influence research efforts.

On Facebook, for one, brands seek to establish an identity alongside users. Despite that, 62 percent of consumers in a Gallup poll report social media has no influence on their buying decisions whatsoever. This doesn’t stop marketers from pursuing social marketing strategies, such as influencer marketing.

According to this influencer marketing infographic from Simplilearn, influencer marketing is the most effective channel for customer acquisition. Of all the social networks, Facebook is considered the most effective for influencer marketing, with 27 percent of the share. Why would marketers use influencer marketing on social media if 62 percent of people aren’t influenced by it? There’s clearly a disjunction between consumer perception and brand perception.

The respondents to the Gallup poll may not have realized influencers are marketing to them. Word of mouth is wrapped up in the identity of the speaker. You trust what an influencer says because, ostensibly, you know them.

Clearly, the intersection of identities and technologies has created a new playing field for business. As we’re seeing with the Apple vs. FBI case, Apple’s struggle is to maintain a brand image that people associate with consumer identity protection.

The struggle for businesses that use data to personalize marketing is also a power struggle. Does the brand influence the consumer’s purchases more than the consumer influences brand identity? The answer to this question will ultimately determine how people identify with brands, and what brands do with data.

By Daniel Matthews

Did You Know That There Is A Real SHIELD?

Did You Know That There Is A Real SHIELD?

The Real Shield

You cannot make this up. The ODNI (Office of the Director of National Intelligence), an Act of Congress and a European Commission special “working group” known as Article 29 are all involved. Blame it on Edward Snowden. The Europeans are “concerned” (meaning: terrified) about the privacy protections surrounding any of their data stored in the US.

What are we talking about? Facebook, Google, Amazon and many more B2C and B2B organizations collect customer’s data and often hold it in their cloud platforms in the US. If your firm works with anyone in the EU and you use the cloud you need to be aware of the major change that has taken place in just the last six months or so. You could be legally liable and suffer penalties for not following these new regulations.

online privacy

A little back ground – until October of 2015 the relationship between the US and EU around privacy protection of EU citizens data stored in the US was governed by something set up in 2000 called Safe Harbor. It was basically a self-policing agreement that stipulated any US company who collected data from EU citizens needed to:

  • Inform them their data was being gathered,
  • Tell them what would be done with it,
  • Obtain permission to pass on the information to a third party,
  • Allow EU citizens access to the data gathered,
  • Ensure data integrity and security and
  • Provide a way to enforce compliance.

But then came the revelations of Snowden. The Europeans were antsy about American Intelligence’s ability to view their personal data but Snowden really drove them wild. A privacy activist named Max Schrems filed suit in the European Court of Justice against the Irish data protection authority based on the concerns he had about Facebook transferring his data from Ireland to the US.

The court ruled last October that Safe Harbor agreement was invalid under the EU’s rules. As you might guess there was immediately a great deal of confusion over what this meant to the various providers and consumers. There was also a recognition that it would be in all parties’ best interest to create a replacement that would meet the EU restrictions. Hence, SHIELD was born.

The EU-US Privacy Shield, commonly called “Shield”, was forged out of an EU and US set of consultations and changes of law on both sides. There were a few hair-raising moments when it appeared that all the needed steps might not be accomplished by the deadline imposed by the court. But, in the end, they were and when you look back, it is amazing how fast governments can actually work.

The European Commission did all of the following:

  • Reformed the EU Data protection rules, which apply to all companies providing services on the EU market,
  • Passed the EU-U.S. Umbrella Agreement ensuring high data protection standards for data transfers between the EU and U.S., and
  • Established the Shield for commercial data exchange, which contains obligations on U.S. companies who handle personal data.

On its part The US Congress passed the Judicial Redress Act of 2015 and President Obama signed it. This has significant consequences for US based businesses because it means that EU citizens will have the right to obtain judicial redress in the US if American authorities mishandle their data.

So what are some of the consequences and differences from Safe Harbor?

  • Safeguards related to intelligence activities will extend to all data transferred to the U.S., regardless of the transfer mechanism used.
  • The Shield’s dispute resolution framework provides multiple avenues for individuals to lodge complaints, more than those available under the Safe Harbor and alternative transfer mechanisms such as Standard Contractual Clauses or Binding Corporate Rules.
  • An organization’s compliance with the Privacy Shield will be directly and indirectly monitored by a wider array of authorities in the U.S. and the EU, possibly increasing regulatory risks and compliance costs for participating organizations.
  • The Department of Commerce will significantly expand its role in monitoring and supervising compliance, including carrying out ex officio compliance reviews and investigations of participating organizations.
  • Participating organizations will be subjected to additional compliance and reporting obligations, some of which will continue even after they withdraw from the Privacy Shield.

For the big cloud-based providers none of this represents a real burden but for medium and smaller firms you need to ensure your compliance even if your underlying cloud provider is one of the big boys like Amazon or Microsoft. As they always say: “Consult Your Attorney”.

So, what about the spooks? The EU is still worried that representations by the ODNI are not sufficient (“we don’t do bulk spying”) to assure protections. The bet is the European Commission will probably approve the Shield but the whole thing will still land up in court. Meanwhile, commerce continues to march on and hopefully we will see a complete resolution soon.

By John Pientka

The 2016 Open Source Jobs Report: Companies Hungry For Professional Open Source Talent

The 2016 Open Source Jobs Report: Companies Hungry For Professional Open Source Talent

The 2016 Open Source Jobs Report

Fifth Annual Report Expands Scope Beyond Linux to Examine What Motivates Open Source Professionals and How Companies Are Attracting and Retaining This in Demand Talent

NEW YORK, NY and SAN FRANCISCO, CA–(Marketwired – May 05, 2016) –  Recruiting open source talent is a top priority for hiring managers focused on recruiting technology talent, and recruiters are increasingly looking for more professional training credentials from their candidates. According to the 2016 Open Source Jobs Report released today, 65 percent of hiring managers say open source hiring will increase more than any other part of their business over the next six months, and 79 percent of hiring managers have increased incentives to hold on to their current open source professionals.

This is the fifth year Dice®, the leading career site for technology and engineering professionals, and The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit advancing professional open source management for mass collaboration, are partnering to produce the jobs report. The four previous years’ research focused exclusively on the job market for Linux professionals. As open source software has become an ever increasing footprint in technology infrastructure and end products, it is important to understand the opportunities and challenges associated with the overall open source talent market. As a result, the organizations are expanding the report this year to examine the broader job market for open source professionals. While this means comparisons to past years’ results are not exact, the data is more broadly relevant to a larger pool of professionals and hiring managers.

The 2016 Open Source Jobs Survey and Report provides an overview of the trends for open source careers, motivation for professionals in the industry and how employers attract and retain qualified talent.

Key findings from the 2016 Open Source Jobs Survey and Report include:

  • Open source talent is one of the top priorities for recruitment this year. Fifty-nine percent of hiring managers say they’ll add more open source professionals to their ranks in the next six months. This is an increase when compared to last year’s Linux-specific jobs report, which found 50 percent planning to add Linux talent during the same time period.
  • DevOps is among the most sought after skills in the industry. Fifty-eight percent of hiring managers are seeking DevOps professionals while the need for developers remains the top position on their list at 74 percent. Open source professionals also feed this trend as 13 percent of the surveyed identified DevOps as the most in-demand skill today — more than any other category.
  • Networking is a leading emergent technology. As the second most in-demand knowledge area, 21 percent of hiring managers say networking has the biggest impact on open source hiring. The only higher category, at 51 percent of surveyed hiring managers, is knowledge of OpenStack, CloudStack and related cloud technologies.
  • Open source professionals are driven to innovate and collaborate. Only two percent of professionals stated that money and perks were the best thing about their jobs. Working on interesting projects tops the list with 31 percent, while working on the most cutting-edge technology challenges (18%) and collaborating with a global community (17%) are also high on open source professionals’ lists.

Demand for open source talent is growing and companies struggle to find experienced professionals to fill open roles,” said Bob Melk, President of Dice. “Rising salaries for open source professionals indicate companies recognize the need to attract, recruit and retain qualified open source professionals on a global scale.”

It’s a seller’s market and it’s only going to get more beneficial for open source professionals,” said Jim Zemlin, Executive Director at the Linux Foundation. “As more and more open source projects are developed, open source professionals will need to update their skillsets with knowledge and experience including DevOps and networking. Ongoing training and certifications will be the key to growing their expertise and keeping a competitive edge.”

The annual report features data from more than 400 hiring managers at corporations, small and medium businesses (SMBs), government organizations, and staffing agencies across the globe — as well as responses from more than 4,500 open source professionals worldwide.

The full 2016 Open Source Jobs Report is available to download for free from http://go.linuxfoundation.org/download-2016-open-source-jobs-report.

About Dice

Technology powers companies. Professionals power technology. Dice quickly delivers the opportunities, insights, and connections technology professionals and employers need to move forward. Dice is a proud winner of 2015 Recruitment Service Innovation Awards: Innovator of the Year, Niche Employment Site; Most Innovative Big Data Solution. Learn how to effectively move forward at www.dice.com. Dice is a DHI Group, Inc. service.

About The Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation is the organization of choice for the world’s top developers and companies to build ecosystems that accelerate open technology development and commercial adoption. Together with the worldwide open source community, it is solving the hardest technology problems by creating the largest shared technology investment in history. Founded in 2000, The Linux Foundation today provides tools, training and events to scale any open source project, which together deliver an economic impact not achievable by any one company. More information can be found at www.linuxfoundation.org.

Trademarks: The Linux Foundation, Linux Standard Base, MeeGo, Tizen, and Yocto Project are trademarks of The Linux Foundation. Linux is a trademark of Linus Torvalds.

Big Data Breaches Found With Major Email Providers

Big Data Breaches Found With Major Email Providers

Big Data Breaches Found

Hundreds of millions of hacked user names and passwords for email accounts and other websites are being traded in Russia’s criminal underworld, a security expert told Reuters.

The discovery of 272.3 million stolen accounts included a majority of users of Mail.ru (MAILRq.L), Russia’s most popular email service, and smaller fractions of Google, Yahoo and Microsoft email users, said Alex Holden, founder and chief information security officer of Hold Security.

It is one of the biggest stashes of stolen credentials to be uncovered since cyber attacks hit major U.S. banks and retailers two years ago.

Holden was previously instrumental in uncovering some of the world’s biggest known data breaches, affecting tens of millions of users at Adobe Systems, JPMorgan and Target and exposing them to subsequent cyber crimes.

The latest discovery came after Hold Security researchers found a young Russian hacker bragging in an online forum that he had collected and was ready to give away a far larger number of stolen credentials that ended up totalling 1.17 billion records.

Read Full Article Source: Reuters 

http://www.nextivadrive.com

The Four C’s – Cloud, Culture, Clash, Change

The Four C’s – Cloud, Culture, Clash, Change

The Cloud, Culture, Clash, Change

I told the new CTO that this cloud stuff was BS. He came charging in with this ‘cloud first policy’ and look what happened. Previously rock solid systems that had worked for years slowed down and had outages as we tried to run them on the cloud. I doubt that the fantasy business case he came up with will ever be validated. We got guys who have been with us forever heading for the exits. I even thought they were planning on getting rid of me. I heard his new lieutenants calling me a ‘server hugger’. Now, I’ll bet he is the one getting the boot.”

cloud-comic3

That’s an ugly but unfortunately surprisingly common scenario. How does it arise? Many managers and executives consider the Cloud a technology issue. It may look like it at first glance but in reality it is so, so much more. How do you avoid negative outcomes when adopting cloud? Well, you could just not use the cloud. And, despite what surveys say about its cloud’s widespread take-up, many actually do just that.

Unfortunately, that is a bit like trying to command the tides to not come in. The economics and benefits are just too powerful. So what do you then do? Why not consider following the “Four C’s”? When dealing with Cloud you must always keep in mind that it represents a Culture disruption. These can lead to Clashes (like our narrator tells above) and therefore must be introduced through careful Change Management.

Culture

Culture can be one of those management consultant buzzwords. It is a powerful and important concept but let’s keep it simple.

Here is a nice definition of culture:

– The beliefs, customs, arts, etc., of a particular society, group, place, or time

–  particular society that has its own beliefs, ways of life, art, etc.

– A way of thinking, behaving, or working that exists in a place or organization (such as a business)

Infographic-Company-Cuture

(Infographic discovered via: Tech.co)

Your organization’s IT department has a very unique culture. Many, or even most IT shops, inside commerce; government and academia are built on old stuff and managed by old paradigms. That’s not to say there are not cutting edge CIO’s and CTO’s trying to make a difference but 80% of their effort is devoted to just keeping the legacy stuff up and running. They can barely respond to new needs. The other challenge is that IT is pretty people intensive. Up to 40% of annual budgets are for people and related expenses. Bottom line: your IT culture has a lot of legacy and a lot of people.

Moving to the cloud, whether Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and/or Software as a Service (SaaS) can be threatening since it represents a pretty significant break with how things have been done. Sure, IT shops have outsourced their assets and operations in the past but that was really a “your mess for less” tactic. Cloud adoption represents a new paradigm in the people, processes and organization of how IT solutions are built and delivered to users.

Think about it. With cloud, a lot of the work that used to take place is just gone. In IaaS, nobody runs around managing or fixing servers. In SaaS, nobody does application upgrades. And the tempo is really accelerated. Instead of months to spec, order and deploy equipment – you do it in minutes. And when it comes to release cycles what may have been quarterly majors and maybe monthly minors – it is now daily, some are even several times a day.

cloud computing certification

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

This looks pretty scary if you are not some hot shot just out of school. Who is going to need you? Sure, you can work on the legacy stuff, at least that will be around for a while – won’t it? Or, you can up grade your skills – especially if you want to keep your job. Just check out AT&T. Either you master the new reality or you will not be part of it. Just how long before your role is in the cross hairs.

Feel threatened? I would. Now you understand why disrupting culture – the old ways of doing things – leads to potential resistance and even clashes. Fear is a powerful motivation. Before you go adopting cloud be smart. Do some change management planning. Maybe get some help. Step back and consider the culture where you will introduce it and plan.

There are lots of change management processes you can utilize. Quite frankly, you’ll probably use a blend of them. But, like those great exercise machines you can buy on TV, if you don’t use them faithfully all the good things they promise will not come about. Your goal is for your folks to understand the change, feel they will be treated fairly, and finally come to the ah-ha! moment where they think – could this be an opportunity for me?

By John Pientka

The Multi Cloud Approach

The Multi Cloud Approach

The Multi Cloud

The multi-cloud approach, spreading cloud apps across different service providers, is a new trend that might compete or integrate with hybrid cloud, depending on how users and providers choose to implement it. Though business leaders readily accept the need for cloud adoption with its reduced CapEx disbursement and speedy access to the best and latest resources, many fear locking themselves into a single service provider. Others make use of multiple providers in an attempt to reduce latency problems, and some prefer to pick and choose the most relevant and appropriate product from the range of providers hawking their unique takes on different amenities. Suggests Dell’s UK cloud strategy director, Gordon Davey, “Platforms chosen for a specific purpose will often have less over-provisioning, and will usually out-perform a generic multi-purpose solution. The aggregated cost and performance benefits of using the right platform for the right workload can often make a very compelling business case.”

Challenges of Multi-Cloud Systems

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Managing the implementation of and utilizing multi-cloud systems requires strict management and overall consistency. Organization can easily find themselves juggling the features of different products for individual projects, losing track of their business goals in their efforts to adequately exploit the disparate features they have access to across service providers. An early obstacle revolves around the differing metrics cloud service providers deliver. For instance, as Peter Duffy, CTO of Sumerian, remarks, “All the cloud providers sell you compute instances in different sizes. So there’s complexity right there from the get-go. If I move a workload from Dell to Amazon, then how many of these should I be buying?”

Brokering

The complexities around service provider integration create a greater space for cloud brokers who step into the thick of it and negotiate multi-cloud environments for businesses. Business brokers handle contracts and billing, and technical brokers assist in the operations of the multi-cloud systems. Kalyan Kumar, SVP of HCL Technologies, says, “Brokers help in unifying the different services, standardizing the implementations and taking care of governance, risk, and compliance.” He believes brokers simplify multi-cloud implementations, and continues, “They can also provide support and expertise that may not necessarily exist within the organization, such as managing the use, performance and delivery of cloud services.

Are the Benefits Worth It?

With the cloud already delivering enhanced flexibility and considerable choice, multi-cloud systems distil these benefits further from service provider down to product down to feature. Organizations can cherry-pick and tailor their solutions, disregarding the customizations or adaptations an individual service provider allows. But aside from the complexity this may create, a few other pertinent concerns must be addressed.

  • Cost

An oft-mentioned benefit of the cloud is the diminished expense. The benefits of CapEx reduction remains in a multi-cloud system, and one might imagine that choosing only the individual features required from relevant service providers would be an additional saving. However, most service providers are not providing their individual tools at cutthroat prices, but rather market complete systems competitively. It’s quite possible that choosing single tools from a range of providers to combine into your own system will be far more expensive than making use of a ready-made package from one provider.

  • Location & Security

Dealing with a range of providers is also likely to mean utilizing data centers in various locations. This requires a certain amount of extra effort on the user’s part, ensuring the regulations and policies of each data center address the needs of their organization. Privacy and security concerns are particularly relevant as many of the cloud services we make use of could leave us vulnerable should they not be appropriately controlled and safeguarded.

For now, the multi-cloud approach is more a theory than an actual system businesses make use of. Without brokers handling the intricacies of the collected services, organizations are likely to find themselves in a time consuming, and possibly treacherous, muddle. And with brokers managing the disparate systems, one wonders how truly distinct and personalized the final combination will be. Nevertheless, cloud solutions are developing so quickly they seem to be keeping pace with, and often outdistancing, our imaginations. Today’s fumbling multi-cloud systems could have a new sophistication shortly.

By Jennifer Klostermann

Taking Your Access Governance Processes To The Cloud

Taking Your Access Governance Processes To The Cloud

Access Governance

Access governance is a growing market in many different industries across the United States and beyond. Companies are investing money in access governance solutions to efficiently improve processes and ensure security of their networks, without a great deal of effort. As the cloud has become more of a standard in every organization, how does access governance apply to the cloud? Let us first look at exactly what it is.

The Importance of Access Governance In The Cloud

First, it’s important to fully understand exactly what access governance is and how it can help organizations of all sizes in every industry. Access governance ensures that each employee within the organization has the correct access rights to the exact resources that they need. This is important for many reasons, including for employees to efficiently perform their jobs and to keep the company’s network secure. While access management allows an organization to easily manage accounts and access, access governance puts a method in place to ensure and monitor access is correct for security reasons.

How is a typical access governance solution set up to work? The company first needs to set up a model of exactly the access rights for each role in the organization. For example, someone working as a manager in the IT department will need certain access rights to systems, applications and resources. This allows the person who is creating the account to easily do so without accidentally making any access mistakes; either giving the employee too many rights or too little rights.

Separation of Duties

Since access governance helps to ensure correct access rights according to a model, there needs to be methods in place to also ensure that there are no mistakes in the model. For example, in a large organization there are many different types of positions and responsibilities, many of which might overlap. It needs to be ensured that someone does not have the permission to both initiate some type of request and then also accept it. Separation of duties ensures that there is no conflict between usage and assignment of access rights.

digital-marketing

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

Reconciliation is another way to ensure absolutely correct access rights. This module compares how access rights are set up to be in the model to how they actually are and creates a report on any differences. Anything that is not accurate can then be easily corrected.

Attestation is still another form of checking access and goes one step further to verify everything is correct. A report will be sent out to managers of a department of set of employees for them to verify that everything is correct. For example, the marketing manager will receive a report on the access rights of everyone in the marketing department. He or she will need to look over and either mark access right for deletion, change access right directly, or create a ticket in the helpdesk system to change the access right. After looking everything over the manager must give their final approval for the proposed set of changes to ensure that everything is correct.

Why is access governance important though for all applications throughout the company? As the amount of employees who are working remotely increases so does the users of cloud applications. In turn, there needs to be ways of ensuring security for these types of applications and for employees who are not working in the physical office.

employees-digital

When the employee is first hired at the company, it is not uncommon for them to accidentally receive too many rights, or acquire them over time from working on projects and never have them revoked. Access rights are frequently overlooked, especially for cloud applications. Access governance ensures that access rights are correct across the entire organization, from in house applications and cloud applications to even physical resources, such as cell phones.

This allows all access to be monitored across the entire organization. Here is what a typical situation would look like in an organization with varying different applications. A new employee is hired in the finance department as a senior accountant and needs accounts and resources created so he can begin work. Based on the model, which the company set up, the employee will automatically receive a Coupa cloud account, Quickbooks, access to the finance share drive and an email address.

Then the organization has it set up so that once a quarter the finance manager receives a report of all of the employees in the department and the access that they have, including now the new senior accountant. A few months later the manager sees that the senior accountant has access to an application for which he was using for a project that is now completed. The manager can easily tag the access to be revoked and ensure that it is done right away.

Since today’s organizations have many different types of applications, several types of employee working situations whether it be traveling, in office or remote, varying types of resources both tangible and intangible, etc., it is important that an access governance solution works with all of these situations. Organizations are willing to invest because access governance solutions ensure security, while overall also allowing employees the opportunity to remain productive, and, in the long run, save the company money.

By Dean Wiech

The Internet of Everything: Why The IoT Will Take Over Every Industry

The Internet of Everything: Why The IoT Will Take Over Every Industry

Why The IoT Will Take Over Every Industry

It’s a big mistake to think that the Internet of Things will only remain relevant with tech industry movers and shakers and early adopters. One glance at the world around you, and you’ll quickly realize that the IoT is well on its way to becoming an everyday aspect of even the most low-tech workplaces.

The IoT is removing mundane busywork from countless blue-collar jobs, enabling businesses, cities, and entire industries to increase services while cutting demands for labor, training, resources, and equipment. In fact, the American Society for Quality surveyed a number of manufacturing companies that have embraced the IoT and uncovered some staggering numbers: Manufacturing efficiency increased by 82 percent, approximately half of the users saw fewer defects, and customer satisfaction swelled by 45 percent.

There’s no denying the fact that IoT applications are effective, but if you aren’t aware of just how widespread they are, you’re probably not prepared to keep up with the many sweeping changes on the horizon.

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(Image Source: Shutterstock)

What’s yet to come extends into the realm of what was once unthinkable: restaurant coolers that automatically place orders when they detect low stock and buildings that are wired to self-monitor their needs so custodians can place their focus elsewhere.

IoT automation is shaping up to be the future of any and all industries that currently revolve around manual-based labor, especially when it comes to monitoring and assessment.

The Low-Tech IoT in Action

Not long ago, mechanics had to look under the hood of a car to see what needed fixing. Now, all they need is a computer that automatically conducts the diagnostics. Similarly, industries such as home appliance repair, HVAC maintenance, and the following three are positioned to lose their reliance on human-based analysis because of IoT solutions:

  • Parking: The “dumb” devices we used to know as parking meters have smartened up. Instead of individual meters merely accepting change and outputting a simple timer, parking kiosks can now process credit card transactions, sense when spaces are available, and accept remote payments to extend time. Drivers can even interact with these systems remotely to find open spots. This cuts down on time, traffic, fuel consumption, and, most importantly, frustration.The impact here is bigger than you might guess. A study showed that drivers searching for parking rack up more than 950,000 miles every year in just one district in Los Angeles. The need for parking efficiency is obvious, and only the IoT can deliver such key solutions.
  • Metering: Self-monitoring “smart” meters in utility markets means millions in savings because of fewer mistakes and less maintenance. But that’s just the beginning; they also allow for optimization. The possibility for high granularity — reports can be collected as often as every 30 minutes — will help utility companies anticipate demand and respond accordingly.
  • Farming and agriculture: Even though it’s one of the oldest and least technical industries out there, not even farming is immune to IoT development. Farmers are currently using sensors to help increase crop yields, monitor weather patterns, and utilize their human resources with more accuracy. Believe it or not, they’re also tracking herd locations and monitoring hormone levels in livestock to determine ideal calving and milk production schedules.Some of the biggest names in farming and agriculture are already joining the IoT revolution: John Deere wants to transform the tractor into a data control center, and Monsanto is analyzing weather with the help of Google alumni.The data collected through IoT solutions can also enable food producers to offer the label transparency that today’s consumers increasingly demand.

Once again, innumerable man-hours and resources are saved in low-tech industries that embrace IoT applications — and, as a result, profits soar.

In the Future, Everything Is IoT-Oriented

The IoT will continue to develop fruitful collaborations between the high- and low-technology worlds — and anyone who isn’t prepared will be left behind. “Adapt or die,” the old adage, applies here as much as anywhere.

What we’re going to see in the coming years will be unprecedented, but not unpredictable. Processes and operations that weren’t even conceivable a few years ago are going to come to life, take over, and replace low-tech methods with unmatched efficiency.

The coming convergence of high- and low-tech approaches is certain to happen in very disruptive and unpredictable ways. Soon enough, anything that isn’t connected will be as good as dead. The term “high-tech” itself could cease to exist as we watch the most unexpected industries begin to integrate labor-saving tech connectivity to multiply their efficiency.

Your choice is simple: Get ready for the IoT to come to your business, or get ready to go out of business.

By John Horn

John-HornJohn is the CEO of Ingenu, which he joined after serving as president of RacoWireless, a leading provider of machine-to-machine (M2M) connectivity solutions. Before joining RacoWireless, Horn was a leader at T-Mobile for more than nine years while he focused specifically on developing the company’s M2M program and go-to-market strategy.

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6 Tech Predictions To Have A Major Impact In 2016

6 Tech Predictions To Have A Major Impact In 2016

6 Tech Predictions To Have A Major Impact The technology industry moves at a relentless pace, making it both exhilarating and unforgiving. For those at the forefront of innovation it is an incredibly exciting place to be, but what trends are we likely to see coming to the fore in 2016? Below are six predictions…

Protecting Your Web Applications In A Hybrid Cloud Environment

Protecting Your Web Applications In A Hybrid Cloud Environment

Protecting Your Web Applications It’s no secret that organizations are embracing the cloud and all the benefits that it entails. Whether its cost savings, increased flexibility or enhanced productivity – businesses around the world are leveraging the cloud to scale their business and better serve their customers. They are using a variety of cloud solutions…

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…

Why Hybrid Cloud Delivers Better Business Agility

Why Hybrid Cloud Delivers Better Business Agility

Why Hybrid Cloud Delivers Better Business Agility A CIO friend of mine once told me that a hybrid cloud model enables him to “own the base, rent the spike” when it comes to unplanned events. Let’s face it – maintaining unused infrastructure for rare or random IT events is expensive and unnecessary in a cloud…

5 Reasons Why Your Startup Will Grow Faster In The Cloud

5 Reasons Why Your Startup Will Grow Faster In The Cloud

Cloud Startup Fast-tracking Start-ups face many challenges, the biggest of which is usually managing growth. A start-up that does not grow is at constant risk of failure, whereas a new business that grows faster than expected may be hindered by operational constraints, such as a lack of staff, workspace and networks. It is an unfortunate…

Fintech Investments Are Seeing Consistent Growth

Fintech Investments Are Seeing Consistent Growth

The Financial Services Cloud Fintech investment has been seeing consistent growth in 2015, with some large moves being made this year. The infographic (Courtesy of Venturescanner) below shows the top Fintech investors and the amount of companies they’re currently funding: Just this week, a financial data startup known as Orchard Platform raised $30 million in…

Shadow IT To Remain A Focus For Both Cloud Vendors And CIOs

Shadow IT To Remain A Focus For Both Cloud Vendors And CIOs

Shadow IT To Remain A Focus Shadow IT, a phenomenon defined as building internal IT systems without the official organizational approval has been a growing concern for CIOs over the last few years. In 2015, it climbed to the top of the list of the emerging IT threats, with as much as 83% CIOs reporting…

Cloud Computing and Finland Green Technology

Cloud Computing and Finland Green Technology

Green Technology Finland Last week we touched upon how a project in Finland had blended two of the world’s most important industries, cloud computing and green technology, to produce a data centre that used nearby sea water to both cool their servers and heat local homes.  Despite such positive environmental projects, there is little doubt that…

Cloud Infographic – Guide To Small Business Cloud Computing

Cloud Infographic – Guide To Small Business Cloud Computing

Small Business Cloud Computing Trepidation is inherently attached to anything that involves change and especially if it involves new technologies. SMBs are incredibly vulnerable to this fear and rightfully so. The wrong security breach can incapacitate a small startup for good whereas larger enterprises can reboot their operations due to the financial stability of shareholders. Gordon Tan contributed an…

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…

Is Machine Learning Making Your Data Scientists Obsolete?

Is Machine Learning Making Your Data Scientists Obsolete?

Machine Learning and Data Scientists In a recent study, almost all the businesses surveyed stated that big data analytics were fundamental to their business strategies. Although the field of computer and information research scientists is growing faster than any other occupation, the increasing applicability of data science across business sectors is leading to an exponential…

The Cloud Is Not Enough! Why Businesses Need Hybrid Solutions

The Cloud Is Not Enough! Why Businesses Need Hybrid Solutions

Why Businesses Need Hybrid Solutions Running a cloud server is no longer the novel trend it once was. Now, the cloud is a necessary data tier that allows employees to access vital company data and maintain productivity from anywhere in the world. But it isn’t a perfect system — security and performance issues can quickly…

The Cancer Moonshot: Collaboration Is Key

The Cancer Moonshot: Collaboration Is Key

Cancer Moonshot In his final State of the Union address in January 2016, President Obama announced a new American “moonshot” effort: finding a cure for cancer. The term “moonshot” comes from one of America’s greatest achievements, the moon landing. If the scientific community can achieve that kind of feat, then surely it can rally around…

Why Security Practitioners Need To Apply The 80-20 Rules To Data Security

Why Security Practitioners Need To Apply The 80-20 Rules To Data Security

The 80-20 Rule For Security Practitioners  Everyday we learn about yet another egregious data security breach, exposure of customer data or misuse of data. It begs the question why in this 21st century, as a security industry we cannot seem to secure our most valuable data assets when technology has surpassed our expectations in other regards.…

How The CFAA Ruling Affects Individuals And Password-Sharing

How The CFAA Ruling Affects Individuals And Password-Sharing

Individuals and Password-Sharing With the 1980s came the explosion of computing. In 1980, the Commodore ushered in the advent of home computing. Time magazine declared 1982 was “The Year of the Computer.” By 1983, there were an estimated 10 million personal computers in the United States alone. As soon as computers became popular, the federal government…

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…

Cloud Services Providers – Learning To Keep The Lights On

Cloud Services Providers – Learning To Keep The Lights On

The True Meaning of Availability What is real availability? In our line of work, cloud service providers approach availability from the inside out. And in many cases, some never make it past their own front door given how challenging it is to keep the lights on at home let alone factors that are out of…