May 27, 2015

CIO Interview: Mike Young, CIO, Dentsu Aegis Network
“One of the issues CIOs have to contend with is how to bring the data story together while doing this other stuff around the tech,” says Young. “We’ve deliberately made our IT transformation process a move to simplified architecture rich in collaboration toolswith one provider – Microsoft – to allow us to tap into the simplified data architecture that gives us,” he says. The hub, which is based on Cloudera, has a service-oriented architecture and allows the firm and its clients to analyse customer data and adapt their marketing strategy to boost sales. The hub hosts global applications that are available to all clients, connecting them to the big data system, and allows use of a statistical model called “R”, allowing on-boarding, cleansing and analytical insight, all in real-time.

Deliver Infrastructure at the Speed of Need
Working in tandem with VACS, Cisco UCS Director combines the virtual network fabric and services with compute, storage and virtualization components to deliver infrastructure templates. These templates deliver infrastructure pre-configured to the specific application’s needs, such as Puppet on Windows, SQL with high availability, dev/test environments or multi-tier generic infrastructure instances. Now for the real magic. The built-in Stack Designer with Cisco ONE Enterprise Cloud Suite enables application architects to combine infrastructure templates with application components to create automated application services. These application services can be deployed, via the self-service portal, into private or hybrid cloud environments within minutes.

Data breach costs now average $154 per record
According to the Ponemon report, data breach costs varied dramatically by industry and by geography. The US had the highest per-record cost, at $217, followed by Germany at $211. India was lowest at $56 per record. Sorted by industry, the highest costs were in the healthcare industry, at an average of $363 per record. The reason, said Barlow, is because the information in a medical record has a much longer shelf life than that of, say, a credit card number. "With credit cards, the time frame from the breach to mitigation is very short," he said. The credit card company just has to cancel the old credit card number and issue a new one, he said. "But the healthcare record can be used to establish access in perpetuity," he said, pointing out that healthcare records include a wealth of personal information as well as Social Security numbers and insurance numbers.

New Image Compression Technique Helps Reduce Image Payload
According to the May 2014 Forrester Research report entitled “Optimize Your Responsive Website Performance To Overcome Mobile Hurdles,” reducing the image weight with resizing and variable compression techniques — as appropriate to screen size and resolution — significantly reduces time-to-first-render and time-to-first-interaction. “As we see web browsing behavior continue to spike across multiple devices, browsers and connection speeds, a fast and consistent delivery experience is more important now than ever” says Kent Alstad, vice president of acceleration, Radware. “Designed to be fast and easy to implement, the click of one button allows an image to be compressed with up to an 80% image payload reduction despite the browser the end user has chosen, and virtually no difference in image quality.”

Big data helps Conservation International proactively respond to species threats
From our perspective, what we want to do is get the best available data at the right spatial and temporal scales, the best science, and the right technology. Then, when we package all this together, we can present unbiased information to decision makers, which can lead to hopefully good sustainable development and conservation decisions. These decision makers can be public officials setting conservation policies or making land use decisions. They can be private companies seeking to value natural capital or assess the impacts of sourcing operations in sensitive ecosystems. Of course, you never have control over which way legislation and regulations can go, but our goal is to bring that kind of factual information to the people that need it.

Employees know better, but still behave badly
Ironically, employees working in the IT sector were among the worst offenders, with only 12 percent saying that they had not engaged in any of these risky behaviors, second only to charity and non-profit employees, at 5 percent. ... The highest level of awareness, overall, had to do with opening attachments from unknown sources and viewing adult content on work devices. On average, 73 percent of respondents rated each of these behaviors it was risky or seriously risky. Only 2 percent said that opening attachments from unknown senders posted no risks, and only 3 percent said the same about adult content. However, 20 percent admitted to opening those attachments, and 6 percent to viewing adult content at work.

More responsive PSN security compliance regime goes live
Public sector bodies will now need to take five steps towards completing an application for a PSN connection compliance certificate. These involve completing a Code of Connection (CoCo); providing a network diagram; providing an IT Health Check (ITHC) report; updating contact details; and, finally, submission. Of these steps, CoCo completion remains the heaviest burden, and will cover the nature of the infrastructure that the council wishes to connect. This includes information such as network size, user numbers, number of sites and number of IP addresses on the network.

Semantic Technology Unlocks Big Data's Full Value
While organizations realize the potential of effectively incorporating data into multiple facets of their business, many are unsure as to how to best take action upon this insight. Consider the amount of data generated on an on-going basis in the financial services space alone; there is transaction data, consumer data, market data, regulatory data—the list goes on. The volume of information alone can be staggering and many organizations may not even have the appropriate tools to access all of their data. This is where semantic technology comes into play. At the highest level, semantic technology gives meaning and context to both structured and unstructured data, and makes it actionable, thereby solving major challenges financial institutions are facing when it comes to realizing the full value of their data.

Apple Pay’s weakest link
In order to use Apple Pay, the user (or the fraudster, it turns out) must enter pertinent information about her credit or debit cards. In addition to the static card information from the user, Apple provides the issuing bank with some low-level information on the user, such as the device’s name and location. But when a fraudster gets the card information in conjunction with a hijacked Apple iTunes account, all of that information too can be spoofed, thereby allowing fraudsters to enter their victims’credit card data into an iOS device. Once the credit card data is entered and accepted (by the banks) into Apple Pay, it becomes as powerful to the fraudster as a physical card. It can even then be used at any of the brick-and-mortar companies that accept Apple Pay because they will think the fraudster has possession of the card.

Net neutrality could become law in Italy - unless internet users would rather opt out
"The premise of the bill is that having neutral access is a right and the providers cannot strip their users of it. At the same time, users can give up that right by voluntarily asking for prioritization of sort, provided that they do it voluntarily and without having been induced to," Quintarelli said. For example, a customer might ask that, on top of their normal (neutral) subscription, their VoIP traffic should be treated as privileged on their access loop so that they could keep having conversations even when, say, some heavy file transfer is going on. The same thing could be put in place for IPTV or cloud backup services' traffic. "But it must be the customers asking for it because it fulfills their needs," Quintarelli said.

Quote for the day:

"With ordinary talent & extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable." -- Thomas Foxwell Buxton

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