August 02, 2015

New Guide From ISACA Helps Organizations Improve SAP Security Controls

“ERP systems automate and integrate much of a company’s business processes to create consistency. ISACA released this important update to bring together information related to SAP ERP-specific risks, controls and testing procedures,” said Ben Fitts of Deloitte Advisory, who worked with ISACA on the fourth edition of the book. “This will be a go-to reference for auditors, not just as a one-time read, but as a book they can dog-ear with sticky notes and return to year after year.” ERP software integrates all facets of an operation, including product planning, development, manufacturing, sales and marketing.


Facebook's Aquila Aircraft, Which Can Beam Data At 10Gb/s Is Complete

Facebook undertook this project as part of its Internet.org efforts. If you’re unfamiliar with Internet.org, it is an initiative led by Facebook, with the goal of bringing together leaders in technology, nonprofits, and local communities to help connect the two thirds of the world that doesn’t have internet access. Zuckerberg explains in his post announcing the completion of Aquila, “This effort is important because 10% of the world’s population lives in areas without existing internet infrastructure. To affordably connect everyone, we need to build completely new technologies.”


Big Data Makes a Better Blockbuster

This is also the moment where Big Data entrepreneurs will be able to turn a vision into reality and change the world, by bringing the benefits of Big Data to the masses. Big Data, analytics, and tools are changing the world, but just because they can read scripts and correlate data sets doesn't mean that human intelligence no longer has a role. In fact, I would argue that these algorithms will free human data scientists from the activities they (objectively) aren't so good at, giving them better information with which to make the creative decisions the computers can't. The examples above show that Big Data isn't only becoming available to smaller businesses, but that it's affecting industries that were considered very difficult to disrupt.



Financial Institutions need to jump on the big data bandwagon

With cashless transactions becoming the norm, fraud is another big issue. Banks needs to continuously monitor client behaviour for anything anomalous. This is done by monitoring the time, geolocation, transaction amount, transaction frequency, items purchased and then mapping the behaviour against a template of what ‘normal’ looks like for that customer. Bear in mind that ‘normal’ for December may be very different from ‘normal’ in July. Spatiotemporal problems like this are non-trivial, and solving them requires highly efficient processing at scale. With data streaming in thick and fast and potentially large financial transactions at stake we ideally want to detect anomalies accurately and within a small time window. Accuracy here means not stopping valid transactions


Machine learning, IoT and big data: Retailers need to embrace latest tech or fall behind

It is here that retailers need to consider technologies that can harness and analyse data automatically and carry out actions without needing much or any human intervention. Luca Bonacina, a retail research analyst at IDC, explained that the retail world has the opportunity to adopt machine learning to improve big data use. "The retail industry is well positioned to take advantage of machine learning developments as very large volumes of data (structured or unstructured) are being created every second. There is a need to understand the hidden patterns in that data to make the most use of it," he said. Machine learning systems can analyse data automatically and in real time to present recommendations to retail workers, or take action based on the results of such analysis.


Black Vine: Anthem hackers share zero-days with rival cyberattackers

It is believed a group dubbed Black Vine is to blame for the data breach, and Anthem is only one of multiple campaigns this resourceful group has shouldered the blame for. On Tuesday, cybersecurity firm Symantec released a whitepaper (.PDF) documenting the evolution of Black Vine over the last three years. According to the company, Black Vine has been in operation since 2012, and the group has compromised companies within the aerospace industry, healthcare, energy, military and defense, finance, agriculture and technology realms. The group not only has access to a variety of zero-day exploits but also uses customized malware. Symantec explains:


How to read a digital footprint

Measuring psychological traits has long been difficult for researchers and boring for participants, usually involving laborious questionnaires. This will sound familiar to anyone who has used an employment agency or job centre. The team are now building on their previous work with algorithms to take psychometric testing even further into uncharted territory – video games. Job centres might be the first to benefit. “A job centre gets about seven minutes with each job seeker every two weeks, so providing personalised support in that time is challenging,” explains Stillwell. “We are working with a company to build a game that measures a person’s strengths in a ‘gamified’ way that’s engaging but still accurate.”


Being Quantitative in Spite of Ambiguity

First, even the simplest of problem statements like “quantify our market growth” has several different ways that this problem could be solved. You could use internal data assets like sales figures, you could use third party data assets like social media activity, and you could even use publicly available data assets like census data to start to quantify these things. You could analyze the data with a litany of techniques with tools like time series analysis, supervised learning, unsupervised learning, regression or network analysis at your disposal. ... There are thousands and thousands of permutations, each of which might be appropriate for solving the problem at hand, making it difficult to navigate the landscape of approaches at your disposal.


Researchers improve de-anonymization attacks for websites hiding on Tor

The Tor anonymity network was built to hide from network snoopers which websites or other Internet resources that user is accessing. It does this by wrapping the user’s requests in several layers of encryption and routing them through multiple computers that run the Tor software. Each of those computers, known as nodes or relays, peel off one layer of encryption, before passing on the request to the next node. In this way the final node, called the exit relay, knows the request’s destination, but not its original source, while the first node, known as the entry guard, knows the original source, but not the final destination. It has long been known that if an attacker controls both the entry guard and the exit relay used for a Tor connection, or circuit, he could use traffic correlation techniques to deanonymize the user.


The best Wi-Fi extender (for most people)

We spent a total of 110 hours researching 25 different Wi-Fi extenders (and testing 10 of them), and the $100 Netgear EX6200 is the one we recommend for most people right now. It costs as much as a great router—but it has the best combination of range, speed, flexibility, and physical connections of any extender we tested. In our tests, the EX6200 could stream 1080p YouTube videos to three laptops at the same time (one up to 63 feet away), and it was the only extender we tested that could stream a 4K YouTube video to a single laptop at the same distance. The Netgear EX6200 also had the best long-range performance, even through exterior walls. It was the easiest to configure and it can give your devices the fastest connection they're likely to support.


Paxata: Adaptive Data Preparation

Paxata developed the first Adaptive Data Preparation™ platform built for the business analyst. The company’s technology dramatically reduces the most painful and manual steps of any analytic exercise, turning raw data into ready data for analytics, and empowering analysts to drive greater value for the business. With seamless connections to BI tools like Tableau, QlikView, and Excel, users can combine data on their own or work with peers in a shared, transparent environment as they shape data for analytics. Data prep has needed re-invention for 30+ years. Paxata leads the convo on self-service data integration, quality, enrichment, collaboration and governance.



Quote for the day:

"The simple act of paying positive attention to people has a great deal to do with productivity" -- Tom Peters