November 30, 2015

10 tips to protect your files from ransomware

What makes ransomware a particularly vicious scam is that the encrypted files being held ransom are still being stored on the user’s computer. This unto itself is a very sad and frustrating reality as the files are not retrievable without the unique encryption key. It is becoming obvious that ransomware is a big issue that Internet users should pay more attention to in order to preventing infection. After all, it is much harder to deal with the consequences afterwards. ... If you discover a rogue or unknown process on your machine, cut off the Internet connection immediately. If the ransomware did not manage to erase the encryption key from your computer, there’s still a chance you can restore the files.

Evolving to the Next Generation of ERP Systems

ERP systems must be able to handle the specific needs of users, which can differ considerably from one industry to another and even between specific micro-verticals that might span multiple business units in a range of industries, locations and jurisdictions. If the software cannot be configured to meet the customer’s feature, functionality and process requirements, and if the customer cannot adapt its operations to these limitations, a cloud-based product isn’t a feasible solution. Many manufacturing and product-centric businesses have found it difficult because their requirements are often too specific and diverse. Unlike with on-premises software, there is no option to customize multitenant SaaS offerings to the needs of a single customer unless the vendor is willing to make the necessary changes to the core code base and the timing of those changes is acceptable to the customer.

State CIOs will focus on security and cloud in 2016

While security and the cloud headlined the CIOs' ranking of their priorities for 2016, it's a crowded field. Respondents to NASCIO's survey also indicated their plans to focus on consolidating and optimizing services and operations, business intelligence and analytics, modernizing legacy IT, and establishing an "enterprise vision and roadmap for IT." Other CIO priorities included efforts to cut or contain costs, recruit and retain top IT talent, improve the development and delivery of software, and advance their plans for disaster recovery and business continuity. In many of those areas, CIOs could benefit from stronger support from key personnel in the executive branch and the legislature, Robinson says, stressing the importance of tech leaders winning the buy-in of top brass in the budget and procurement processes.

Four CIO rules for building a mobile future

Before we go too far, let's think about how to take a somewhat balanced approach to mobile apps for business. And, by balanced, I mean an approach to mobile app development that considers factors besides hype and urgency. After all, I am old enough to remember the hype and urgency of the dotcom craziness. I don't want to offend any of my readers, but who really thought that creating a Web business called made that much sense? Did that many people really need to go online to order and have shipped across the country a 10-pound bag of kitty litter? Now that we've agreed on the prudence of a balanced approach to developing mobile apps for business, let's talk tips.

DataOps and three tips for getting there

Like DevOps, the impetus for DataOps is to blend teams together to increase collaboration and agility. While DevOps combines the development and operations teams, DataOps is "the set of best practices that improve coordination between data science and operations," according to consultant Lenny Liebmann,founding partner at Morgan Armstrong in Teaneck, N.J., and contributing editor to technology publications. Andy Palmer, CEO and co-founder at Tamr Inc., based in Cambridge, Mass., provided more detail in a recent blog post: "DataOps is a data management method that emphasizes communication, collaboration, integration, automation and measurement of cooperation between data engineers, data scientists and other data professionals."

The Hidden Pitfalls of Going Freelance in IT

“In order for a project to be successful, the client has to buy into you and the vision for the project,” says Nick Brattoli, founder and lead consultant at Byrdttoli Enterprise Consulting. “This is exacerbated in the IT world, because more often than not, you are going to be working remotely,” says Brattoli, who’s been freelancing on and off for his entire IT career. “Technology is wonderful in that it makes it possible for us to work from anywhere with an Internet connection. But there is still value in being able to meet face-to-face, and many companies are hesitant to trust someone they haven’t met.” In addition, at many companies the tech-savvy people running a project will know what needs to be done to meet the desired outcomes.

Microsoft's new premium Office 365 subscription for businesses is here

Skype for Business is essentially a rebranding of the company's Lync communication software, which Microsoft launched earlier this year. Tuesday marks the general availability of features including a PSTN Conferencing service that lets users dial into a meeting being held using Microsoft's communication service. E5 subscribers also get a new Cloud PBX feature that lets IT administrators replace on-premise PBX systems with a cloud-based management portal provided by Microsoft. Microsoft has offered PBX services through its Lync and Skype for Business Server products for several years, but Cloud PBX is a fully managed system that doesn't require company administrators to provision and manage a server whether that's on-premises or in the cloud.

Driving The Automaker Into The Future

"You need people who can be deep architects, who can be deep cyber-security experts, who can be deep in application development and agile methodology," she explained. "You also need people who can be strategic, who can understand business concepts, who can help lead the business to innovative solutions." Klevorn described the struggle to recruit fresh young talent and is taking a new approach to hiring IT pros. Ford started using Facebook and Twitter to engage with students, for example, and changed its on-campus presence. Having an office in Palo Alto has strengthened its connection to Stanford University and a community of talented people who may not otherwise consider the Michigan-based company.

DevOps at Seamless: The Why, How, and What

The key thing about DevOps is understanding under which circumstances it should be introduced to your organization. Starting with “why” is crucial as there is probably no greater (and more expensive) failure than choosing the wrong tool for a problem on an organizational level. Nevertheless, let us assume that you know the “why”. The next question to ask is how to address the challenge. Let us assume that DevOps may be the answer. What remains is determining what to do to get there. Microservices architecture, continuous integration, continuous deployment, test automation, monitoring automation, infrastructure automation etc. are frequently associated with DevOps but to consider DevOps as only the tools risks having those practices withdrawn, replaced, or diminished whenever your company faces a crisis.

Email Data Breaches: The Threat That Keeps On Giving

CIOs should create a process for retrieving leak data when large leaks happen, because our analysis shows that the very appearance of someone's email address in a leak exposes them to more abuse after the leak occurs. Attackers use leaks to build their database of targets for all sorts of fraud - not just fraud related to the leak itself. ... Security is never given enough attention until there is a major problem - this has always been true and probably always will be. Enlightened organizations invest more in security because they know that the cost of doing nothing is to guarantee - at some unknown time in the future - an incident that is very costly.

Quote for the day:

"Every problem has a solution. You just have to be creative enough to find it" -- Travis Kalanick

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