Daily Tech Digest - July 19, 2017

UN survey ranks nations by cyber security gaps

“There is still an evident gap between countries in terms of awareness, understanding, knowledge and finally capacity to deploy the proper strategies, capabilities and programmes,” the survey said. 50% of countries don’t have a national security strategy, which is said to be the first step towards closing cyber security gaps. “Cybersecurity is an ecosystem where laws, organisations, skills, cooperation and technical implementation need to be in harmony to be most effective,” the survey said. “The degree of interconnectivity of networks implies that anything and everything can be exposed, and everything from national critical infrastructure to our basic human rights can be compromised.” North Korea, in 57th place, was among countries that ranked higher than their economic development but were let down by their “cooperation” score

AI Will Be In Almost Every New Software Product By 2020, Says Gartner

The growing interest in AI for enterprise software is evident in Gartner’s search data; in January 2016, the term “artificial intelligence” was not in the top 100 search terms on gartner.com. By May 2017, the term ranked at number seven. “As AI accelerates up the Hype Cycle, many software providers are looking to stake their claim in the biggest gold rush in recent years,” said Hare. “AI offers exciting possibilities, but unfortunately, most vendors are focused on the goal of simply building and marketing an AI-based product rather than first identifying needs, potential uses and the business value to customers.” Hype and “AI washing” is obscuring the real benefits to be gained by the technology. To successfully exploit the AI opportunity, technology providers need to understand how to respond to three key issues

Financial Services and Neo4j: data lineage and metadata management

Specifically, data lineage compliance can be a challenge because the same data can be replicated across many different systems. ... Neo4j’s flexible schema enabled the global firm to model all its data flows and rapidly answer questions about how and where its data is used. Given the success realised with Neo4j, the firm plans on widening its coverage of datasets and offering the solution to other parts of the bank. ... An enterprise whose data management process is both flexible and responsive in real time can better respond to the evolving compliance landscape while offering more competitive products and services to customers. In terms of both flexibility and performance, Neo4j is far and away the best database to manage these growing and interconnected datasets.

Where Do Businesses Fall Short With Digital Transformation?

“The number one challenge is finding the right talent to execute on it. Gartner has done research with CIOs asking them about what they see as their top challenges. Number one was lack of talent and resources. ... Where the demand for talent is already about five times bigger and supply and demand is growing faster and faster, attracting this talent is a major challenge.” – Roald Kruit, Co-Founder, Mendix.  “Probably the biggest challenge is having a real understanding of what it means to dangerously transform the business. Many people believe that digital transformation means making the forms that round the business available online, or making some transactions available on a website or on an iPhone. However, true digital transformation means rethinking the way you run your business from top to bottom. ...” – Rod Willmott, Chief Wzard, Wzard Innovation

The hidden horse power driving Machine Learning models

Something needs to be done. Maybe we could move this problem into the cloud and let the big boys with their big machines take over. The problem is moving your data into the cloud. For universities and the likes of Google, this isn’t really a problem, providing you’ve got access to end-to-end fast networks. Universities in Britain are all connected over the Janet network, whose backbone runs at 100Gbps, more than enough to shift large datasets around. Google, of course, has its own dark net, but what if we want to move data out of our walled garden and onto a public cloud ML system? This was just the problem we faced a few years back at Dundee University when trying to use Microsoft’s Azure to process Mass Spectrometer data. These files were fairly big - a few gigabytes in size - but we were hoping to process lots of them in near real time.

What is gamification? Lessons for awareness programs from Pokemon Go

While many vendors, as well as security practitioners, want to describe their gamification products/programs as a fun way to learn, the effort to provide information is not gamification. Again, gamification is about rewarding actual behaviors, not achieving a specified learning objective. All security practitioners should be aware that just because a user knows what is proper behavior, it doesn’t mean that they actually practice that behavior. For example, some vendors created games about how to tell if a password is strong. They then have in-game contests to tell if a student can tell which passwords are strong and which are weak. If a student knows that a good password has eight or more characters, the “game” issues them a certificate deeming them security aware.

Goodbye Age of Hadoop – Hello Cambrian Explosion of Deep Learning

While data scientists are a little cautious to talk about the wonders of artificial intelligence, they are very enthusiastic in talking about the new capabilities presented by Deep Learning. This may seem a little paradoxical but I invite you to think about it this way.  Robust AI is the accumulated capabilities of speech, text, NLP, image processing, robotics, knowledge recovery, and several other human-like capabilities that at this point are very early in development and not at all well or easily integrated. Deep Learning however is a group of tools that we are applying to develop these capabilities, including Convolutional Neural Nets, Recurrent Neural Nets, Generative Adversarial Neural Nets, and Reinforcement Learning to name the most popular.

Advanced social technologies and the future of collaboration

Most companies have begun adopting digital tools, including social technologies, or even transforming their businesses with digitization in mind. But a mistake that many make is choosing the tool first and then expecting change will follow. Any improvement via social tools must begin with people changing the way they work first, then using the tool that fits best. Agile ways of working (such as cross-functional teams, scrums, or innovation hubs that are apart from company hierarchy), as well as user-centric approaches to product development, require the greater collaboration provided by the message-based platforms. And the more that message-based platforms are integrated into business processes and systems, the more critical they will be.

Why cyberattacks should keep CFOs up at night

"Bringing cybersecurity up a level to the C-suite and providing it to them in a framework of risk helps them to really put the investments we want to make in the right framework, so they can understand those investments versus the overall compensation structure or the R&D pipeline," Driggs said. In this way, the CFO can act as a cybersecurity advocate to the board. "If we are hit with a cyber attack or subject to ransomware or fraud, there is certainly a financial impact and a reputation impact and a business continuity impact," Driggs said. "The CIO should view a relationship with the CFO as beneficial to them—they will get an advocate to represent their issues to the board and the C-suite for investments and awareness around the risks they are trying to mitigate for the company."

The simple way to scan documents with your Android phone

It's kind of astonishing when you stop and think about all the once-cumbersome tasks our smartphones have simplified. From check depositing to audio recording and even airplane boarding, our tiny pocket computers have truly become all-in-one life organizers and productivity machines. Our phones can do so much, in fact, that I'd wager hardly anyone actually takes advantage of all their mobile-productivity powers. Case in point: One easily overlooked way your phone can save you time and frustration is by serving as a quick 'n' simple on-the-go document scanner. Google actually offers two useful tools for scanning and managing physical papers -- and both can come in quite handy when you find yourself needing to save or share any sort of document, card, or receipt.

Quote for the day:

"If it's a good idea, go ahead and do it. It is much easier to apologize than it is to get permission." -- Admiral Grace Hopper