Are Apple and Google Protecting Us or the Criminals?


Technopreneurph

Are Apple and Google Protecting Us or the Criminals? image bigstock Silhouette Of A Hacker Isloate 44548606 600x600

Late last year, Tom Webster and I did a podcast with our six marketing predictions for 2014. Two trends I mentioned were 1) the “malignant complexity” of the web that would lead to an increase in security breaches and 2) the opportunities this would create to actually market data security as a product feature.

In an online world under attack from hackers, terrorists, and just plain old bad guys wanting to wreak havoc, the idea of hack-proof Internet data safety will have to be a product feature trumpeted by new devices, software and service providers.

My prediction is coming true … but with some unexpected consequences.

The bad guys benefit

Keeping people away from your data is not just a feature, it has also become a marketing pitch, as I forecast.

Last week, Apple announced that its new operating system for iPhones would have a new encryption system. In…

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A New Kind of School System


The Compulsive Explainer

I am taking a MOOC on Organizational Analysis – which is turning out to be quite good.

This part of the course is a Case Study – that of an experimental school that tried to implement Individual Guided Instruction in an inner city school – where most of the students (probably black) were from disadvantaged homes.

My own experience in Middle School and High School were extremely unpleasant. And I could see how this approach would be a big improvement. There are two lectures here:

A lecture where the instructor, from Stanford is shown in a corner of the screen. 

A lecture where the instructor is not shown. 

On my computer I could view the first lecture by clicking on the link on my blog – but not the second.

Let me know how it works for you.

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Is There a Future For Traditional Apps in The Cloud?


Gigaom

In the article, “To Cloud or Not To Cloud: The Uncertain Future of the Traditional Enterprise App,” Kevin Parker, a principal architect for Rackspace, explores which kinds of traditional apps will thrive in the cloud and how companies that rely on older software can begin the journey toward cloud competence. While traditional apps aren’t cloud-aware, they are far from “legacy” or “obsolete.” On the contrary, analysts who frame the cloud as a one-size-fits-all solution for every flavor of traditional applications are ignoring the complexity that enterprises face with adoption.

In spite of this complexity, however, there are clear benefits to moving these traditional apps to the cloud:

  • You can adopt the cloud gradually:  Think of cloud as a journey, not a sprint. Take a monolithic application—one that is tightly coupled—and break it apart. This makes it easier to determine which pieces run better and are easier to manage in…

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The Future of Cloud-Based Technology


Technopreneurph

The Future of Cloud Based Technology image Download blue 300x300Cloud-based software and cloud computing are helping to shape the modern economy in incredible ways, disrupting established employment practices and driving a period of incredible innovation.

37% of small businesses have completely integrated cloud software into their daily business operations. That figure has risen from 14% in 2010 and is growing quickly as the benefits of decentralized computing resources become more and more evident to small business owners and entrepreneurs.

Access to a seemingly endless amount of business software with functions ranging beyond accounting and marketing means that smaller businesses and entrepreneurs can now realistically compete with industry leaders. It enables employees to effectively work from home and form teams with coworkers all over the globe. It empowers hobbyists and dreamers to put their ideas in motion and do so with professional tools and advice.

A recent study by Intuit reviews the past and present of cloud software and cloud computing…

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A “Privacy Checkup” From Facebook


Gigaom

Facebook has rolled out its long-awaited privacy “checkup” button. The checkup is exactly what it sounds like — a way to quickly scan your activity on the site and see who can view your activity.

“We know you come to Facebook to connect with friends, not with us,” Product Manager Paddy Underwood said in the blog post announcing the news. “But we also know how important it is to be in control of what you share and who you share with.”

You’ll be prompted by Facebook’s privacy dinosaur — yes the same little guy who popped up back in May to let you know if your posts were public — to run your checkup. That means users less tuned into tech news won’t have to go hunting down the feature; Facebook will flag it for them.

Facebook's privacy dinosaur pops up to prompt you to take the check-up. Facebook’s privacy dinosaur pops up to prompt you to take the check-up.

If you choose…

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Keep Your Personal Information, Personal: What The Celebrity Photo Hack Can Teach Us


Technopreneurph

You may not be Jennifer Lawrence or Kate Upton, or even know or care who those women are, but you should be aware of the latest “scandal” that included risqué photos of the pop stars and the good old cloud.

Over the Labor Day weekend, it was reported that nude photos of the high-profile celebrities Keep Your Personal Information, Personal: What The Celebrity Photo Hack Can Teach Us image selfiewere leaked online via the web forum, 4chan, by a “hacker” who was able to get into the celebrities’ personal phone storage and lift the photos from their cloud accounts. The hacker reportedly was looking to make some cash off the photos (although the identity of the hacker hasn’t been uncovered) and had made an announcement that there were more photos that would stay under wraps if he/she received PayPal donations.

Although some of these photos were said to be forgeries, representatives for Jennifer Lawrence and Mary E. Winstead confirmed their authenticity.

And so the…

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5 Lessons From The Celebrity Cloud Hack/Leak


Gigaom

With the dust starting to settle after the dreadful hacking and exposure of various female celebrities’ nude selfies, we’re finally in a position to consider the implications of what happened.

Most of this information isn’t new as such – the episode brought to the fore circumstances and activities that have been around for a while – but there are lessons in there, and it’s time we gave them serious consideration.

1. Some cloud security is unacceptably poor

[company]Apple[/company] uses two-factor authentication (2FA) as a protection for Apple ID management and iTunes and App Store purchases, but not for iCloud backups, which is where many of these pictures came from. Even where the company does employ 2FA, it doesn’t exactly make it easy. What’s more, as Nik Cubrilovic wrote in his excellent in-depth analysis of underground marketplaces and forums, Apple makes it far too easy to execute so-called brute force…

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It’s Time for Storage to Smarten Up Already


Gigaom

DataGravity, the thus-far secretive startup co-founded by Paula Long of EqualLogic fame, is finally ready to talk about its DataGravity Discovery storage array.

Lately, much of the discussion around storage has been about speeds and feeds of the latest flash arrays — and that’s valid. But Long’s position is that much of the value of what companies store is lost because that data goes into a black box, and companies have to deploy audit software and other extras it to wring important information out of it. [company]DataGravity[/company] integrates those tools, search and analytics, into its software.

Aggregating data about the data

What are some examples of that important information? For instance: Who at the company accessed a file and how often? Who is working together on shared files? Is there personally identifiable information (PII) or credit card information sitting in documents? Which files have not been touched in two years? All of that…

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