February 15, 2016

The Power of Location-Based Offers in Banking

The primary benefit of location-based offers is that it allows financial institutions the ability to move beyond traditional, calendar-based promotions to provide more relevant content in real time. This includes the cross-selling of banking products based on need, the offering of outside merchant offers to increase loyalty of current customers and the recommendation of services that can alleviate a potential negative event ... Additional benefits of location-based services include an additional security layer that can validate transactions by comparing the user location with the location of the transaction, and the ability to offload rudimentary inquiries such as the location of the nearest ATM or branch. Other location-based applications are the ability to book appointments at a branch location and the identification of a customer as they enter a branch.


Mobile app security should not be an afterthought

There's definitely a lot more development in mobile happening. The best practices in mobile aren't as well developed as best practices for the web. That's getting a little bit better.Consider HTTPS. What we saw for quite some time was something that on the Web is relatively straightforward, which HTTPS is. People were doing it wrong on mobile for years before anyone really noticed. There's a lot you can get wrong with HTTPS, and they were getting it all wrong. As people move over to mobile they are definitely having to relearn some of the lessons we learned over the years. Password security is another one of those. People began to make passwords on websites a lot more robust. You can't just have a four or five letter password anymore on most websites.


Fight threats to information security: Inform your people

The human element in information security often gets short shrift. For example, many still believe that training programs don’t work and aren’t worth spending time and money on. But the best security defenses in the world won’t be successful if even one employee doesn’t know a phishing email when he sees one. And today, it’s easy for business departments to order a cloud service or download an app to a corporate smartphone. People who don’t know what’s kosher and what isn’t are practically courting disaster. Everyone — from chief executives to business departments to the newest of hires — needs to be keenly aware of the threats out there, how to prevent them and how to counter them if they do occur.


Google's Unconscious Bias Training Yet To Fix Diversity Problem

Biases are shaped by our experiences and by cultural norms, and allow us to filter information and make quick decisions. We've evolved to trust our guts. But sometimes these mental shortcuts can lead us astray, especially when they cause us to misjudge people. In the workplace, for example, the halo effect can cause us to inflate performance ratings or in-group bias can lead us to overlook great talent. Combatting our unconscious biases is hard, because they don't feel wrong; they feel right. But it's necessary to fight against bias in order to create a work environment that supports and encourages diverse perspectives and people.


A Stress Test to Identify and Improve Corporate Culture Problems

The next step is collaborative -- identifying those who can carry the desired culture throughout the organization from the bottom up, not just the top down, and make systemic change to combat entropy. Finally, and this may seem obvious but is not practiced with any robustness, companies must hire people based on the identified values that align with the desired corporate culture. The adage "culture eats strategy for breakfast" is so much more than MBA jargon. Companies fail when they focus the lens too narrowly on profit and loss and allow values and behavior to run amuck. Satisfaction surveys show the extent of the problem. Putting a stress test to a company's culture offers benchmarks to fix the problem.


Dear IT Department, Why Community Management Matters

The primary issue at stake is this: Social business in all its flavors — from social collaboration and social marketing to social customer care and even social supply chain — is not just another communications technology. Instead, it’s focused on engaging people in powerful new ways that requires a new set of digital skills in, yes, an enabling new technology environment. The tools are secondary (though important), how people work in effective new ways is what matters. Most significantly, a new operational entity emerges from this, called an online community, that did not exist before and requires its own cultivation and management. The initiating business sponsors typically, for their part, are interested in connecting together people and their knowledge in more streamlined, dynamic, fluid, and actionable ways that benefits the work they are doing.


Your whole organisation needs to get real about IT security: Here's how to do it

Holman says the first step -- as simple as it sounds -- is for the business to take cybersecurity seriously. "A board must at least acknowledge the risk of a hacking incident or rogue piece of malware is clear and present," he says. Such c-level acknowledgement might include a security awareness exercise or penetration test. Even seemingly straightforward analyses can help, including an awareness of other companies in your sector and an up-to-date check whether they have been in the news lately. Second, says Holman, CIOs should encourage board members to take a few hours out of their busy schedules to conduct a security risk assessment. "The numbers soon add up, especially if we're talking about a business that relies on a critical online presence to bring in revenue."


Don't toss data center best practices when managing cloud services

Among those data center best practices are creating templates to determine how deployments should be carried out, development and test procedures and data governance polices. ... Of course, organizations already use authentication mechanisms like Microsoft Active Directory so users and computers can access systems. If they're using Azure, they can manage users directly in the cloud by having them log in to the cloud version, Azure AD, a separate directory of users that lives in the cloud. They can even add Federation Services so users have single sign-on -- access to multiple systems by entering just one ID and password. "Now you can have the same user credentials that you've always had, but they can extend in the public cloud," Cancila said.


5 myths about the Internet of Things

The true innovation of IoT comes not from simply connecting products, but rather from what we do with the data the “things” create. The companies that really come out on top will leverage this data, developing strategies around what this new connectivity allows them to do, from enhancing customer experiences to optimizing business processes and product development. Why is this so important? Believe it or not, most companies have no idea who their customers are. A garage door manufacturer, for example, might sell product to Lowes or Home Depot and once that product is out the door they have no idea who actually purchases it. IoT will fundamentally change this scenario by providing the manufacturer with the ability to connect directly to the person who uses the product to provide a personalized customer experience, support and service offerings.


The surprising truth about Facebook's Internet.org

Internet.org and Free Basics operate in countries where data use is often charged by the megabyte or by the minute. So the idea of using the Internet for free can be an attractive idea to many of these users. Facebook chooses which sites are included and which are rejected, and the local carriers may get veto power as well. Facebook has published these criteria, which are focused on the size of the data load, and has thus far not rejected any sites for reasons that are not technical. Facebook claims that any site, including competitors, are allowed to join Facebook's Internet. For example, Facebook does not enforce the "community guidelines" required of companies setting up shop on Facebook.com.



Quote for the day:


"Wise are those who learn that the bottom line doesn't always have to be their top priority." -- William Arthur Ward