Daily Tech Digest - August 19, 2020

Why Board Directors And CEOs Must Become AI Literate To Lead Forward

Unfortunately, many companies have been lured into AI programs with black box AI practices, meaning clear accountabilities are not easily evident, transparent, let alone audited to manage risk. Board directors and CEOs know where their employees are located, whether they are working remotely or in an office, who to contact for customer service or personal issues. Yet, I don’t know of one global company where a board director or a CEO can produce in less than five minutes, a comprehensive list of all their AI algo/AI model assets across their enterprise operations and know the last revision model date, and have robust risk classification evidence, verified by third party-auditors. With the democratization of data which is the foundation of AI enablement, AI and machine learning (ML) KPI’s must be elevated to have more importance like our Financial KPIs, deriving increased transparency, like auditors have been disciplined with fiduciary accountability of profit and loss statements.... Few companies have mature AI centers of excellence where machine learning operations (MLOps) is a competency center, although many companies are now starting to invest in ML Ops.

Look Upstream to Solve Your Team's Reliability Issues

Dan believes that one of the most important steps in upstream thinking isn’t system related. They’re human. As people will be the ones solving these issues, we are the first piece to the puzzle, and the most crucial. There’s a way to do this well. Dan notes that you should try to“...surround the problem with the right people; give them early notice of that problem, and align their efforts toward preventing specific instances of that problem". For example, you might be bogged down with incidents and unable to tackle the action items stemming from incident retrospectives and operational reviews. These action items sit in the backlog and are not planned for any sprints. To change this, you’ll need to get buy-in from many stakeholders. You’ll need engineers, managers, product teams, and the VP of engineering on board. “Once you’ve surrounded the problem, then you need to organize all those people’s efforts. And you need an aim that’s compelling and important — a shared goal that keeps them contributing even in stressful situations,” Dan says. Once your team is ready to embark on this journey upstream, you’ll need to work on actually changing the system. 

Speed up your home office: How to optimize your network for remote work and learning

Until recently, home internet providers have rarely spent much time discussing the upload bandwidth they allocate to each customer. ... Working from home, getting that upload bandwidth has been problematic. The various broadband reps I've spoken to over the years have told me that very few people ever even ask about upload bandwidth, which is why ISP's have never offered much capacity. Of course, because of COVID-19, all that is changing rapidly. Before COVID, most users were surfing the web, watching YouTube or Netflix, or playing games. Little upload capacity was needed. Now everybody's on Zoom all the time. When you're on Zoom, you need broadband capacity to send video upstream just as much as you need broadband capacity to watch video. ... the really big issue you should be concerned about is upload capacity when it comes to online learning and work-based video conferencing. I know families of six where the two adults and four kids all used to go to either the office or school -- and who are now all at home, and who all need to be in Zoom conferences at the same time. As the following chart shows, it doesn't matter that you have 100Mbps down, according to your plan, if all you have is 5Mbps up. With 5Mbps up, you can -- barely -- sustain one Zoom stream.

Exclusive: 5 principles of creative disruption

Whatever line of innovation you’re in, there’s a tip that comes in handy, time and time again: sell the problem you solve, not the product. Think of your most-used mobile app (Google Maps, WhatsApp, Tinder perhaps) and, odds are, it transformed something that you found to be boring, awkward or time-consuming into a much better experience. For ActiveQuote, the idea was sparked by an irritating problem. There was nothing in health insurance that compared to what consumers were able to do with car insurance. “Deep frustration can become an entrepreneur’s inspiration,” says Theo. ... Ten years from now, no insurtech wants to be described as ‘very 2020s’. Keeping the customer journey fresh is just as important as maintaining the quality of the product. It’s something that ActiveQuote is keen to stay on top of. “A key challenge to address with any kind of online quote or application journey is customer drop-off,” says Jones. “Traditional, form-based application pages are fine for desktops. However, with the increase in mobile usage, a mobile-specific journey was imperative, especially with complex products such as health insurance.”

FinTech Leaders Should Embrace This Two-Pronged Strategy to Survive the Pandemic

More broadly, FinTech leaders can identify fertile ground by asking, “What processes can my company automate within the financial services industry that previously were managed by humans?” Other opportunities for innovation uncovered by the pandemic include technology solutions pertaining to safety, fraud, and remote banking and payments. The majority of the technological changes spurred by the pandemic will not be reversed, even after the virus is long-gone. Therefore, FinTech leaders should think beyond solutions that are just stop-gaps. The second prong of your survival strategy should be adopting a business model that will generate predictable revenue over the long-term. Rather than depending exclusively on one-time sales, delivery execution and post-support, financial technology providers should be positioning for the coveted, ever-present and predictable recurring revenue model. Subscription-based, service bureau, and software or platform-as-a-service offerings are clearly leading against capital expenditures and premise-based investments. Rapidly proliferating, these types of solutions are driving the technological transition of a wide spectrum of enterprise-level B2B and B2C organizations. 

Getting Started - AI Image Classification With TensorFlow.js

TensorFlow.js offers surprisingly good performance because it uses WebGL (a JavaScript graphics API) and thus is hardware-accelerated. To get even more improved performance, you can use tfjs-node (the Node.js version of TensorFlow). TensorFlow.js allows you to load pre-trained models right in your browser. If you have trained a TensorFlow or Keras model offline in Python, you can save it to a location available to the web and load it into the browser for inference. You can also use different libraries to include features such as image classification and pose detection without having to train your model from scratch. We will see an example of such a scenario later in the series. TensorFlow.js also allows you to use transfer learning to elevate an existing model using a small amount of data collected in the browser. This allows us to train an accurate model quickly and efficiently. We will also see an example of transfer learning in action later in the series. At the most basic level, you can use TensorFlow.js to define, train, and run models entirely in the browser. As mentioned earlier, using TensorFlow.js means that you can create and run AI models in a static HTML document with no installation required. At the time of writing,

Digital Strategy In A Time Of Crisis

The priority is to protect employees and ensure business continuity. To achieve this, it is essential to continue adapting the IT infrastructure needed for massive remote working and to continue the deployment of the collaborative digital systems. Beyond these new challenges, the increased risks related to cybersecurity and the maintenance of IT assets, particularly the application base, require vigilance. After responding to the emergency, the project portfolio and the technological agenda must be rethought. This may involve postponing or freezing projects that do not create short-term value in the new context. Conversely, it is necessary to strengthen transformation efforts capable of increasing agility and resilience, in terms of cybersecurity, advanced data analysis tools, planning, or even optimisation of the supply chain. value. The third major line of action in this crucial period of transition is to tighten human resources management, focusing on the large-scale deployment of agile methods, the development of sensitive expertise such as data science, artificial intelligence or cybersecurity. The war for talent will re-emerge in force when the recovery comes, and it is therefore important to strengthen the attractiveness of the company.

The Attack That Broke Twitter Is Hitting Dozens of Companies

A security staffer at one targeted organization who asked that WIRED not use his name or identify his employer described a more wholesale approach: At least three callers appeared to be working their way through the company directory, trying hundreds of employees over just a 24-hour period. The organization wasn't breached, the staffer said, thanks to a warning that the company had received from another target of the same hacking campaign and passed on to its staff prior to the hacking attempts. "They just keep trying. It's a numbers game," he says. "If we hadn’t had a day or two's notice, it could have been a different story." Phone-based phishing is hardly a new practice for hackers. But until recently, investigators like Allen and Nixon say, the attacks have focused on phone carriers, largely in service of so-called "SIM swap" attacks in which a hacker would convince a telecom employee to transfer a victim's phone service to a SIM card in their possession. They'd use that phone number to intercept two-factor authentication codes, or as a starting point to reset the passwords to cryptocurrency exchange accounts.

IoT governance: how to deal with the compliance and security challenges

“A good way to deal with IoT governance is to have a board as a governance structure. Proposals are presented to the board, which is normally made up of 6-12 individuals who discuss the merits of any new proposal or change. They may monitor ongoing risks like software vulnerabilities by receiving periodic vulnerability reports that include trends or metrics on vulnerabilities. Some boards have a lot of authority, while others may act as an advisory function to an executive or a decision maker,” Wagner advises. ... Instead of focusing on “beefing up” data security, organisation’s should prioritise data privacy in any governance program. She explains that at “the heart of IoT is the concept of the always-connected customer. Organisations are looking to capture, share and use the large volumes of customer data generated to drive a competitive edge. “The problem is that under GDPR the definition of data privacy is broad, which may find many in hot water as they come to adopt IoT. This is because the regulation places far-reaching responsibilities on organisation’s to impose a specific ‘privacy by design’ requirement. What this means is that organisations must have in place the appropriate technical and organisational measures to ensure that data privacy is not an afterthought....”

Identity Mismanagement: Why the #1 Cloud Security Problem Is about to Get Worse

There are two major reasons why IAM is more difficult today than it has been before. One is the sheer scale of cloud deployments; the other is the increased frequency of identity-based cyberattacks. Let's take the problem of scale first. According to recent research, enterprises in 2017 expected to use an average of 17 cloud applications to support their IT, operations, and business strategies. So, it’s no surprise that 61 percent of respondents believe identity and access management (IAM) is more difficult today than it was even those two short years ago. With so many different systems in play at any one time, IAM is no longer just about having a rigorous tracking and authentication system in place. In many organizations, the computing cost of authentication and encryption now forms the primary bottleneck on network performance. The second reason why contemporary IAM is more difficult is the dramatic rise in cyberattacks based on compromising identity systems. A decade ago, most cybersecurity analysts were primarily focused on securing data against direct intrusion and theft attempts. 

Quote for the day:

"Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate." -- John F. Kennedy

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