Category Archives: Technology

Banking On Recurring Revenue In The Cloud

Banking On Recurring Revenue In The Cloud

Recurring Revenue In The Cloud

Many common traditions have held up for centuries (Thanksgiving dinner, anyone?), but the post millennial world of business and technology has perennially followed the idea that traditions are meant to be broken.

Take a look at the radical change in the way content is consumed.Traditionally, cell phones were used as mobile devices for conversation and upgraded every two years, usually when a service plan expired. Movie lovers rented and returned DVDs to a store (sometimes with a late fee). People watched music videos on MTV and bought CDs. Those conventions, once considered bleeding edge, are long gone. Over the last decade our society has completely changed the way it consumes content, thanks in large part to the rise of mobile devices and the ubiquity of cheap high-speed Internet connectivity and wifi. The broad based adoption of recurring revenue by businesses creating and distributing this content has only accelerated this trend.

Breaking The Old Traditions

In short, if you think the way you run your business will remain the same over the next five years, you’re in for an unpleasant surprise.


(Image Source: Shutterstock)

Businesses today must break old traditions in order to meet the constantly changing demands and needs of customers, who increasingly want what they want, when they want it and how they want it. To take advantage, companies are switching to recurring services. 47% of U.S. businesses have already adopted or are considering adopting a recurring revenue model and the number is steadily rising. The result is undeniable – business booms, upstarts become household names, and established enterprises are reinvented.

Yet supporting this level of demand is increasingly difficult.  It requires flexible business models and processes that can easily repackage existing products and services into dynamic product catalogs full of tailored offerings that meet changing needs.

Despite the challenges, the carrot is proving tempting. Check out these companies who have successfully leveraged the content provided via their networks and repackaged it into recurring services:

YouTube Red

This powerhouse recently joined the recurring revenue subscription world with the announcement of YouTube Red, a $9.99 ad-free monthly subscription channel stocked with original programming like shows from popular YouTubersPewDewPie, Lilly Singh, and the Fine Brothers. The service also offers access to YouTube’s gaming app and YouTube Music, a new app that replaces YouTube Music Key (launching later this year). Subscribers can access this content on their computer, mobile, and television.


YouTube Red is welcomed by avid YouTubers (both content uploaders and content viewers) who are annoyed by the platform’s video ads. According to the company,YouTube Red differs from Netflix’s movies, shows, and originals as it will “offer premium features with a new way to enjoy music and some original content from people who have become really popular on YouTube.”


Apple is no stranger to disruption. The company revolutionized the mobile phone, sparking the transformation into the multi-use smart phone it is today. And Apple continues to monetize new opportunities by constantly changing existing products and services to mirror consumer changes and preferences. After dominating music with the iTunes store, Apple released Apple Music Radio, a subscription music service, when iTunes sales declined.

But Apple did not stop with services – the company has even turned to recurring revenue models for its products with the launch of the Apple iPhone Upgrade Program earlier this year. The 6S and 6S Plus iPhone models are available through a monthly payment plan directly with Apple, with plans starting at $32/month and an upgrade offer every 12 months. This new payment option indicates that Apple is ready to dive head first into expanding its recurring revenue models as it empowers Apple to establish a more predictable revenue stream for years out, all while they fortify its brand loyalty by tethering customers to more frequent upgrades on an affordable basis.


Earlier this year, Nickelodeon targeted a new market when it launched Noggin, a mobile subscription app for preschoolers featuring award-winning shows along with music and educational videos. Noggin targets the mobile consumer, like a family with young children on a road trip to Disneyland.

With Noggin’s launch, it’s clear that Viacom sees the long-term benefits of recurring revenue. When the company didn’t renew its contract with Netflix in 2013, it shut off streaming access to popular Nickelodeon shows. As a result, Viacom knew this service would be attractive to parents of Nickelodeon-loving children, who would buy and then take their favorite programs on the road with them via tablet or smartphone. As consumers continue to shift away from cable and towards streaming, Viacom found a way to continue to monetize Nickelodeon’s most popular shows through a subscription service that guarantees a continuous revenue stream.

The good news is that successful monetization via recurring revenue does not require you to reinvent the wheel. You just have to replace the spokes.Doing so requires a flexible business model and agile billing system that can adapt your continuously changing needs. The way your business runs will change – are you going to be ready?

By Tom Dibble


The Internet of Things Lifts Off To The Cloud

The Internet of Things Lifts Off To The Cloud

The Staggering Size And Potential Of The Internet of Things

Here’s a quick statistic that will blow your mind and give you a glimpse into the future.

Every month, 328 million things are being connected to the internet... Click to Tweet
When you break that down, it translates to 127 new devices online every second.

In only a decade from now, every single vehicle on earth will be connected to the Internet of Things (IoTs), according to Mobile Future, an association of cutting-edge technology and communications companies.

And while that’s impressive, it’s only a shadow of where technology and the sector is going.


(Infographic Source:

The scale of the changes sweeping in and reshaping every aspect of our lives is phenomenal. Study after study delivers jaw-dropping numbers about the potential impact from the Internet of Things, and we’re only getting started.

Wearable Technology Use Doubling Each Year

Multinational software company Adobe speculates that almost 87% of consumers still know very little about the rapidly advancing connected future. Wearable technology is one of the areas where consumers are gaining awareness, thanks in large part to the marketing reach of Apple and the launch of Apple Watch in 2015. As the year comes to a close and more and more companies launch wearables, mainstream awareness grows. Mobile Future suggests that the amount of wearable technology in use is doubling every year and 71% of consumers say that wearable technology has improved their health and fitness.

wearble tech

But if health and fitness are at the cutting edge of the internet of things, it’s the connected home that really gets tech wizards and investors salivating. “Nearly three-quarters of homeowners said they want a self-adjusting thermostat, according to a new survey from Icontrol. That finding makes smart thermostats the most coveted device, ranking slightly above home monitoring cameras, internet-connected door locks and automatically adjusting lights.’’

And not far behind those devices, is the arena of entertainment where projections are of a staggering $56 billion market by 2018.

Shawn DuBravac is an analyst who is extremely bullish about the dawning of this connected age, or what he calls “the Internet of me”. The author of Digital Destiny lists the ‘’5 pillars of our Digital Destiny” as being ubiquitious computing, cheap digital storage, constant connectivity, a proliferation of devices and the ‘sensorization of technology. Right now, those pillars are converging and are being realised. Speaking at the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show, DuBravac foresees “an even bigger universe of products, consisting of everything from internet-connected thermostats to smart toothbrushes. Within a few years, he says, the market for such products will reach 50 billion devices, compared to the current smartphone market of 2 billion units.”

It’s not just the home or the car. Every aspect of our lives, from the military to agriculture, energy, education and health will be reshaped by the connectivity of the devices within the sectors. 44 zetabytes of data will be exchanged between connected devices by 2020, a number that defies imagination.

The Next Gold Rush

The Internet of Things has captured the imagination of businesses worldwide who are foreseeing the next gold rush and are determined to be a part of it. 94% of all businesses have seen a solid return on their investment into IOT and the upside is still enormous, according to Adobe’s CMO.

In fact, only 0.06% of things that could be connected to the Internet currently are, which means 10 billion things out of the 1.5 trillion that exist globally are currently connected. The McKinsey Global Report estimates that this could all end up adding $11 trillion per year to the global economy by 2025

This is what it feels like to be standing on the edge of a brave new world.

By Jeremy Daniel

Utilizing Software Defined Networking (SDN)

Utilizing Software Defined Networking (SDN)

Software Defined Networking

Winding down this year, we only have a couple of topics left: SDNs and SDI. Although SDNs are part of a solid SDI, we want to talk directly about it now.

Many cloud management tools have the ability to create a virtual network. But creating a true VXLAN would require support of the layer 2 to UDP protocol encapsulation. But that raises another question: Is a VXLAN a true SDN?

First, what is a SDN? SDN stands for Software Defined Networking. This means than a very robust network can be created and ran through a software system. That being said, exactly how robust it is, is determined by the package that is either included in your cloud management software, or a third party software that you add to your environment.

Load Balancing, Firewalls and Advanced Routing

So, now that we know what it is, how do we use it? Lets try this example first. You have a basic cloud setup; several tenants (or projects based on your cloud management software (CMS)) are setup. You are using basic network connectivity through your CMS to talk to the physical VLAN that connects your COMPUTE nodes of your cloud.


(Image Source: Leaseweb)

You can communicate with other systems across your physical network. But now, you would like to add some additional services, such as load balancing (LB), firewalls (FW), and advanced routing (RTR).

Not all SDNs have all of these capabilities, but most that I have worked with do. So here you are, and you want to expand the network first. You would like to have several subnets, with each tenant having its’ own network range of IPs. Firing up your management software, you create a virtual router first. This router makes the connection from the CMS and the SDN to the physical layer of the network. This is at Layer 2 and possibly Layer 3 of the OSI model.

This virtual RTR is now your gateway for all your networks. You can make additional RTRs if you have separate connections to networks below the CMS software. Actually you can have separate RTRs for every network you have, even 20 to 50 of them, but management becomes a nightmare.

Tweaking The Traffic

You now have at least one network, and you have a RTR attached to it making the connection to the physical VLAN below the CMS. What if you want a LB or a FW on your network? Well, some CMS programs come with the ability to have Security Groups, or filters on your traffic. In the most logical and simple sense, you are using a firewall. It can restrict traffic based on TCP/UDP port, Protocol number (e.g. GRE tunneling uses Protocol number 47, not port 47), sender and receiver and so forth. Truly a firewall in all sense of the word.


But if you want to share policies and centralized management of your FW, you will need to engage an SDN. (In some cases, you can load a major virtual FW, and have it manage all policies).

But what about LBs? That is another great thing of the SDN toolset. Most have the ability to build pools and do SSL off-loading right from within the software. Many LBs and FWs expose an API stack for you to take advantage of, especially if you are functioning in a DevOps or a CI/CD (Continuous Integration / Continuous Delivery) model.

It is difficult to be vendor agnostic with all the different SDNs available out there. But go slow, do your homework, and you will succeed in nailing it.

By Richard Thayer

The Rise of The As-a-Service Industry

The Rise of The As-a-Service Industry

No Longer Doing It by the Book: The Rise of the As-a-Service Industry

In mid-2015, a world leader in online book sales announced a ground-breaking approach to royalty payments to authors whose books were listed on their e-book lending service. In essence, the company announced that they would be paid by each page that had been read, rather than simply a flat fee for the download of the book. This innovation was met with much despair by writers and the media, who immediately saw it as a new form of either censorship or exploitation, given that readers need no longer complete their emotional and financial investment in a book, but simply pay a pro-rated fee for whatever progress they made. One journalist suggested, tongue-in-cheek, that perhaps the same principle be offered in restaurants, in which patrons would have to pay only for the portion of a meal that they consumed.


(Image Source: Shutterstock)

It must be emphasized that this pay-per-page development applied only to the extensive subscription-based lending library, and not to books that were purchased and downloaded the traditional way. However, it is indicative of a trend in almost all industries, in which products are giving way to an “as-a-service” economy. The fact that this transformation is now happening to a centuries-old industry (book publishing) proves that no one is safe from change, and it delivers some significant strategic lessons for companies everywhere.

The book publishing industry represents one powerful middle layer between creator and consumer. As with the movie and music industries, publishers have essentially dictated how creative material is to be distributed—and how its creators are to be paid. Ironically, although this pay-per-page initiative seems, at first glance, to penalize authors, many of those who analyse their potential revenue based on the formula envision little to no loss, and perhaps even a financial gain—a step forward from the meagre royalty structure that most authors currently face.

Overnight Pop-up Trends

As such, traditional publishers stand as a symbol for distributors of all other types of goods. It is important to recognize that in this changing economy, new things are happening: long-term patterns and predictions are giving way to overnight pop-up trends; manufacturers are discovering they are free to sell direct to consumer (D2C), cutting out the middleman completely; consumers are becoming increasingly aware of their power through comparison-shopping, online research and reviews – they have greater sway over the marketplace than ever before. So, in the same way that books are now at the whim of a reader’s attention, so too are products of all types, and those who sell them—all along the chain—must pay attention. The term “disruptive” is often used to describe innovative products and technologies that have caught on to this new movement, because that is what they are doing: disrupting the status quo.


Secondly, the pay-per-page approach redefines book publishing as “reading-as-a-service,” and thus brings it in line with many other types of as-a-service offerings that manufacturers and distributors are either discovering or are being forced to embrace. Whereas once it was sufficient to sell a photocopier to an office or copy shop, the better model is proving to be one in which the device remains the property of the manufacturer, and a service is sold to the retailer in the form of number of pages printed, toner refills, maintenance, training and up-sell opportunities. In short, service is replacing products across the board.

Balancing Quality With Agility

Some authors have cynically suggested that their writing style might now actually have to adapt to readers’ tastes rather than the other way around. But this is the same situation that all companies face: the need to balance quality with agility, both inside and out. It applies to products for sale, and it applies equally to hiring and retaining quality talent.

Paying for “pages read” may seem like an odd and non-traditional idea. But so too is the idea of dominating the hotel industry without owning property as AirBnB did, or changing the taxi industry without buying cars, as Uber did. In fact, “odd and non-traditional” are quickly becoming bastions of the new normal. Writers and readers are welcome to push back against the pay-per-page initiative with outrage, but they should also see this new form of publishing as the writing on the wall.

For more on this topic, go to, sponsored by HP Enterprise Services.

By Steve Prentice

On-Premise VoIP vs The Cloud

On-Premise VoIP vs The Cloud

Modern Day Phone Systems

The jargon in the business phone system industry is enough to make even the most tech-savvy entrepreneur’s head spin. However, if we cut through all the strange wording and focus on the features that make each system unique, we can develop enough of an understanding to make a well-informed decision for our own business needs. According to Morning Markets, 65% of businesses are expected to utilize some form of VoIP service by the end of this year. The growth is largely due to the cost savings and flexibility advantages of VoIP over traditional landlines. However, two distinct forms of business VoIP services have emerged: on-premise (the equipment is physically located in your office) and cloud-based (the service is accessed through the Internet). Although this may seem confusing, this article will provide even the busiest entrepreneur with a good idea of which service is a better fit.

Setting The Record Straight


To make sure we’re all on the same page, we’ll start by defining VoIP. The acronym itself stands for “Voice over Internet Protocol,” and refers to any service that provides users with the ability to make phone calls through the Internet rather than a normal analog line. It’s not that different from what you’re used to—VoIP works just like a regular phone, but exchanges the phone plug for an Ethernet plug or WiFi. You may already be aware of these VoIP services, but you may not know that consumer versions of VoIP are now the norm for most home phones. We’ve come a long way since low-cost, low-quality providers such as Vonage, and now most companies won’t even install analog services unless specifically requested by customers. In fact, you’re currently using VoIP if you have AT&T U-Verse, Time Warner’s home phone service, or Ooma—and you’re smart to do so, as VoIP services typically provide customers with free long distance and rates that are cheaper than analog.

The PBX System

Business VoIP combines VoIP phone service with the features of a business phone system, including employee and department extensions, call transferring, specialized call routing, voicemail, and more. In the past, businesses installed a PBX system to get this functionality. PBX stands for “private branch exchange,” an individual phone network used solely by the business in question, and it typically costs thousands of dollars to install. In addition to the money spent on the products and service themselves, an IT professional would need to be hired to put everything together, resulting in a significant expense by the time the setup process is finally complete. Luckily, present-day business owners need not cough up thousands in order to employ a functional phone system, thanks to technological advances made within the last decade. Virtual PBX services—“cloud services” maintained and upgraded by third parties rather than the business itself—provide the customer with an alternative to purchasing, installing, and maintaining individual PBXs within in an office.


As was previously mentioned, there are two kinds of business VoIP services. The first is on-premise business VoIP, which uses VoIP lines and an on-site (or “on-premise”) PBX. On the plus side, the presence of an on-site PBX means the customer’s phone service is not dependent on a third party for the phone service. (However, the phones do still need high-speed Internet to function properly, which is important to keep in mind when considering VoIP.) Furthermore, if your business has a large number of employees located in a single office, the pricing options often scale in your favor. On the other hand, freedom from third-party maintenance does not necessarily guarantee full independence—customers must still rely on an IT specialist to maintain equipment and resolve any Internet issues, which can mean additional fees. On-premise VoIP is also problematic for on-the-go business people, as the phone system is limited to the office where the PBX is located.

Small Businesses Should Consider Cloud Business VOIP

If you have a small, growing business, you may consider cloud hosted business VoIP. Companies who offer this service host the PBX systems themselves, meaning that a business switching to VoIP only has to purchase phones. These are mailed to the customer preconfigured and ready to go—no technician needed. Any necessary management or maintenance occurs through an online portal. As one would guess, the setup costs are much lower for cloud VoIP than on-premise, primarily because the PBX is hosted elsewhere. Additionally, the phones are not confined to a single office and can be used anywhere with an Internet connection. This is ideal for on-the-go and remote employees alike, and also something to take into account if you’re a business owner looking to work from alternating locations throughout the year. Other pros to the cloud include automatic upgrades to phone system features, courtesy of the provider, and easy integration among desk and smart phones as well as softphones. (“Softphones” refers to software used when making calls through your computer rather than a desk phone or mobile phone.) Downsides to using cloud business VoIP include dependence on the PBX-hosting company, as the provider may occasionally suffer from an outage that temporarily leaves their customers with poor call quality or the inability to make or receive calls altogether. Businesses with a large number of employees may want to consider on-premise services, as pricing for the cloud business VoIP is usually based per user.

Whether you prefer on-premise or the cloud, VoIP has something to offer every entrepreneur. If you’re still using an outdated phone line, or looking to outfit your business for a low price, business VoIP is for you and your wallet.

LeoBy Leo Welder

Leo Welder is the Founder and CEO of, LLC, a website that guides entrepreneurs through the process of starting a business, and Zilker Ventures, LLC, which manages a family of B2B information sites.

Google Taking A Back Seat To Self Driving Laws

Google Taking A Back Seat To Self Driving Laws

Google Hoping To Prove To California Regulators 

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — Hustling to bring cars that drive themselves to a road near you, Google finds itself somewhere that has frustrated many before: Waiting on the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Comic-Driverless-CarsThe tech titan wants the freedom to give the public access to self-driving prototypes it has been testing on public roads since the summer. Before granting that permission, California regulators want Google to prove these cars of the future already drive as safely as people.

The Department of Motor Vehicles was supposed to write precedent-setting rules of the road by last Jan. 1. Nearly a year later, it is still struggling. After all, the agency is geared to administering driving tests and registering cars, not settling complicated questions the technology raises.

If the cars’ advanced sensors and computing power can drive better than humans, do they need a steering wheel and pedals? Would a person even need to be inside? Google says no on both…

Read Full Article: NYTimes

Solving The Identity Management Conundrum With Sensible Cloud Solutions

Solving The Identity Management Conundrum With Sensible Cloud Solutions

Solving The Identity Management Conundrum

Businesses of all sizes are increasingly moving their IT operations into the cloud. Their reasons for doing so are diverse and varied, but typically fall into broad categories; modernisation, streamlining workflows, easier access to business-critical applications, cut costs on data centres, and so on.

While there is no denying that the amount of benefits that the cloud can bring to a business are vast, there are still some important considerations to make when making the leap.

One of those considerations is how to effectively manage identities.

The Old Problems with Identity Management

The challenge of identity management was never fully solved in the pre-cloud era, a strange anomaly given that identity and access management (IAM) has been at the heart of corporate IT security for two decades.


With companies now entirely reliant on computers for all aspects of doing business, IAM is also one of the broadest issues in IT security. Whether an employee needs to access internal applications, an outsourcing company requires limited control over hardware functionality, or consumers want to interact with their online accounts, they are all dependent on secure and reliable IAM.

Managing all the access points and accounts could be a time-consuming exercise, especially if the systems have been badly implemented. Even if they have been correctly implemented, issues such as orphan accounts, poorly mapped essential data, non-existent monitoring of privileges, and wrongly assigned super-user accesses could all combine to soak up precious resources and ultimately result in costly clean-up exercises.

The Arrival of Off-Site Services

Before the explosion of off-site services, IT staff were responsible for manually performing administrative tasks in order to give the employee the correct accesses. Such an approach made meeting regulatory guidelines, sufficiently managing security controls, and creating company-wide consistency difficult to achieve – all of which only served to exacerbate the problems listed above.

As discussed, IAM now underpins almost every facet of the business world – and thus requires far more management than simply adding and removing various accesses. The system in place needs to reflect a company’s business goals and unique challenges, and thus allow it to adapt almost instantly to any new requirements that arise. Beyond that, it needs to be simple, user-friendly, and secure.

If the situation was difficult to manage before, the uptake of cloud services, the growth of the Internet of Things, and the addition of external constituents could make the problem worse. Indeed, with Gartner now predicting that by 2020 “60 percent of all digital identities interacting with enterprises will come from external identity providers through a competitive marketplace, up from less than 10 percent today”, it is vital that systems are put in place now to help manage the impending change.

Thankfully, the cloud can help by offering hybrid solutions between on-premise resources and cloud-based resources.

The Importance of Cloud-Based Solutions

The long-held ideal of effectively organising identity management in cloud computing whilst maintaining control over internally provisioned applications and resources is now becoming a reality.

data breach

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

At the core of the solution is security. With data breaches and data theft seemingly never away from the headlines, organisations are increasingly required to prove that they have strong IAM controls in place both for internal resources and for resources accessed remotely. To achieve this, the ability to tie off-premise user identities to back-end directories is vital, and systems should be used that can provide cloud-based bridges to those directories.

Some facts serve to underline this point even more forcefully; according to SC Magazine, privileged users cost US businesses $348 billion per year in corporate losses, Group ID claim 19 percent of employees change job responsibilities each year (with 5 percent of users in an average company’s Active Directory being no longer employed by the organisation), and Gartner are predicting that IAM will remain as one of the top three most sought-after cloud services.

How Microsoft Azure Active Directory Can Help

The capabilities of Microsoft Azure Active Directory (AD) address many of the issues raised. Most importantly, Azure AD can provide access control to cloud-based applications, including third party ones, but the benefits extend far beyond that.

For example, it offers tools that allow IT professionals to scan the applications in use and isolate those which have the biggest effect on data confidentiality, compliance, and auditing, it helps to identify and address cloud-based security threats, and it can provide single sign-on to the most popular SaaS applications.

It also helps to negate inefficiencies in the user lifecycle, thus becoming the perfect solution for newer SMEs that were created in the age of cloud use. It does this by including support for self-service and dynamic rule-based groups, role-based and rule-based provisioning, managing both on-premise and private cloud directories, and regular recertification of user privileges.

In the age of global business, it is also important to have a way to let partners and other vendors access your applications. Azure AD assists in this business-to-business collaboration without the need for proxy users, instead making use of email-verified and social identities.

The Future

As the necessity for greater engagement between businesses and their customers grows, and as newer social and mobile technologies continue to come online, effective IAM is more important than ever.

The Future

Businesses now have to take a consumer-led approach for granting and controlling access to their resources, especially to those which are based in the cloud. Without that approach, they risk being exposed and left behind on a number of fronts.

Systems such as Microsoft Azure AD are the perfect way for SMEs to better manage their existing users and extend their services over time, making sure they don’t miss the exciting opportunities that will arise over the next five years and beyond. Contact them for more details.

This post is brought to you by Cloud for Tomorrow.

By Dan Price

3 Steps To Ensure Third-Party Security With Your IoT Providers

3 Steps To Ensure Third-Party Security With Your IoT Providers

Third-Party Security IoT Providers

When you decide to partner with a third-party provider for your Internet of Things solution, you also partner with that third party’s security vulnerabilities.

Fair or not, your customers will hold you accountable for any security breach related to your company, especially when your brand is the face of the partnership. Companies that must maintain security compliance — like those that have to maintain The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard — can be found legally liable for their partner’s security deficiencies, so more than your brand will suffer if you trust the wrong firm with your business.


The 2013 Target security breach demonstrated the potential scale of damage that businesses can suffer when third-party providers don’t practice proper security. After stealing credentials from a third-party heating, ventilation, and air conditioning contractor, attackers accessed Target’s systems and stole the credit card data of millions of customers.

Despite the security vulnerability resting with the third party, Target received all the bad press that accompanied the breach. Even today, we refer to the attack as the “Target security breach,” so don’t expect your customers to be understanding and place the blame elsewhere if your partner makes a mistake.

As the IoT becomes more mainstream, attacks like the one on Target will become more common while hackers attempt to use backdoor entrances into company networks and systems. More interconnectivity means more opportunities for breaches, so you must be vigilant when it comes to security standards.


(Image Source: Shutterstock)

Follow these three steps when vetting potential partners to prevent breaches and maintain the trust of your customers:

  1. Do your research. Don’t trust what someone else tells you. Perform your own security audit of potential partners by visiting their data centers, meeting with their IT security teams, and reviewing their security controls. If you don’t have the expertise to conduct a thorough audit, hire a specialist and don’t cut corners. By spending some money now, you could save yourself from losing much more down the road.
  1. Set high standards. Know what security controls you require from your partners. If a company doesn’t meet your standards, don’t just negotiate a smaller contract; refuse to work with it until all the necessary controls are in place.
  1. Continue to monitor. Once you find the right third-party business, don’t sit back and assume everything will be fine moving forward. Meet with its security team at least once a year to ensure your partner continues to follow and improve the security controls identified in the initial audit. If ownership changes or you notice a lot of organizational turnover, perform another audit to identify deviations and make sure the security you need doesn’t take a backseat to other initiatives.

The IoT will only continue to grow. You must prioritize security within your company and your vendors to ensure that dangerous vulnerabilities don’t accompany that expansion. Be diligent, stay up-to-date on the latest in data security, and demand a partner that takes security as seriously as you do.

Alex-BrisbourneBy Alex Brisbourne

Alex is president and CEO of KORE Telematics, the world’s largest wireless network provider focused exclusively on the rapidly expanding machine-to-machine communications market. He is a prolific speaker and opinion leader and is frequently sourced as an expert on machine communications.

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Three Tips To Simplify Governance, Risk and Compliance

Three Tips To Simplify Governance, Risk and Compliance

Governance, Risk and Compliance Businesses are under pressure to deliver against a backdrop of evolving regulations and security threats. In the face of such challenges they strive to perform better, be leaner, cut costs and be more efficient. Effective governance, risk and compliance (GRC) can help preserve the business’ corporate integrity and protect the brand,…

Protecting Devices From Data Breach: Identity of Things (IDoT)

Protecting Devices From Data Breach: Identity of Things (IDoT)

How to Identify and Authenticate in the Expanding IoT Ecosystem It is a necessity to protect IoT devices and their associated data. As the IoT ecosystem continues to expand, the need to create an identity to newly-connected things is becoming increasingly crucial. These ‘things’ can include anything from basic sensors and gateways to industrial controls…

The Security Gap: What Is Your Core Strength?

The Security Gap: What Is Your Core Strength?

The Security Gap You’re out of your mind if you think blocking access to file sharing services is filling a security gap. You’re out of your mind if you think making people jump through hoops like Citrix and VPNs to get at content is secure. You’re out of your mind if you think putting your…

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 Importance of Cloud Backups: Guarding Your Data Against Hackers

The Importance of Cloud Backups: Guarding Your Data Against Hackers

The Importance of Cloud Backups Cloud platforms have become a necessary part of modern business with the benefits far outweighing the risks. However, the risks are real and account for billions of dollars in losses across the globe per year. If you’ve been hacked, you’re not alone. Here are some other companies in the past…


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