Posted by & filed under Cyber Security.

MANY OF US have little more than a weak, reused password standing between our financial assets and a remote attacker—one armed with powerful tools and a database of passwords from security breaches. This is a losing battle. It’s the most likely way for weak computer security to put our finances at risk.

Think this can’t happen to you? I’ll bet you have at least one password taken in a big security breach. A quick way to find out is entering your email address at Troy Hunt’s HaveIBeenPwned site.

Source: HumbleDollar
Date: March 22nd, 2019
Link:
https://humbledollar.com/2019/03/beefing-up-security/

Discussion

  1. Why is that even though the steps to create more personal online security are well-defined and reasonably simple, most people won’t follow them?
  2. How would you help the company you work for implement these suggestions to improve online security?

Posted by & filed under Ransomware.

For the senior manager of a large corporation in Hong Kong, it was instant cold sweat.

He had heard about this type of computer virus and how dangerous it could be. But he never thought that he would be tricked into clicking on a wrong link. Now, as he read the ransom note, he panicked. This could cost him his job.

Ransomware is a particularly nasty type of computer virus.

Instead of stealing data or money from victims, the virus takes control of computers and scrambles every single document, picture, video and email.

Then the ransom demand is issued. Sometimes it’s written inside a note left on a desktop, sometimes it just pops up on a screen without warning.

Source: BBC Capital

Date: March 21st, 2019

Link: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/resources/idt-sh/hated_and_hunted_the_computer_virus_malware_ransomware_cracker

Discussion

  1. How can you protect yourself against ransomware
  2. How could you help a company protect its employees from ransomware?

Posted by & filed under Consumer Technology, Emerging Technologies, YouTube.

(Credit: Konstantin Ermakov)

Most mornings after Grace Lee wakes up, she spends two hours thinking up ideas for her YouTube channel, What’s So Great About That?, a series focused around popular films and TV programmes. Lee, a 24-year-old from Peterborough, England, researches ideas, then writes scripts that help explain the concepts to her 29,000 viewers.

After that, she moves onto her work for another channel, The Financial Diet, a financial advice organisation with 630,000 subscribers. There, she researches and edits a series of animated explainer and life-hack videos.

“I’ve been on YouTube since the year it started, but I didn’t know about professional help for YouTubers until I was in my second year at university,” Lee explains. “I still forget, with the people I watch, that they have a team – even though I’m part of a team.”

Source: BBC Capital

Date: March 15th, 2019

Link:http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20190307-the-hidden-armies-that-power-the-internets-new-stars

Discussion

  1. The internet and sites like YouTube were supposed to bring about the “democratization of technology”. What does this mean?
  2. It seems that there is a natural force that means that leads to large, powerful players dominating. Why is this?

Posted by & filed under Emerging Economies.


Betelhem Dessie, 19, is one of the youngest tech pioneers in Ethiopia. Over the last three years, in addition to patenting several software programs, she has travelled the country teaching students how to code and conducting innovation workshops. So far, she has reached more than 20,000 young people.

Source: BBC Capital

Date: March 15th, 2019

Link to video: http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20190308-how-ethiopias-youngest-tech-pioneer-inspires-a-generation

Discussion

  1. What do you think it takes for a 19 year old to travel her country and teach 20,000 young people how to code
  2. Is teaching young people how to code all that is needed?

Posted by & filed under AI/Artificial Intelligence, Cyber Security, Microsoft.

The silhouette of a Microsoft executive speaking during a keynote session at the Microsoft Developers Build Conference in San Francisco on March 31, 2016.

Microsoft Corp. unveiled two new cloud security services to help customers find and stop threats and manage their cyberdefenses by tapping experts from the software giant.

Azure Sentinel, available for customer preview Thursday, is what’s called a Security Information and Event management tool. Microsoft said it’s the first of its type based in the cloud. The product uses artificial intelligence to comb through data to find threats and lets customers rent computing power from the company rather than buy more of their own servers to crunch information.

Source: Bloomberg Technology News

Date: March 6th, 2019

Link (open using incognito mode to prevent article download tracker) : https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-02-28/microsoft-unveils-azure-sentinel-cloud-security-program?srnd=technology-vp

Discussion

1) Why might companies not want Microsoft AI to “comb through [their] data”?

2) Why is it a good idea to hand off cybersecurity to “experts from the [Microsoft] software giant”?

Posted by & filed under Solar Energy.

Solar panel debris is seen scattered in a solar panel field in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Humacao, Puerto Rico on October 2, 2017.

When Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico in 2017, many residents lost power for months — and some neighborhoods are still struggling to get electricity back up and running.

Puerto Rico had solar panel fields generating power before the hurricane, but much of it was inaccessible when the grid (or the network that delivers electricity to people) went down.

That’s one of the biggest challenges with solar energy, which provides an alternative way to power homes and businesses. The technology is still limited, not only because sunlight collection can be inconsistent on cloudy days and unavailable at night, but also because rural or remote areas often lack proper infrastructure.

Some companies are working on solutions to make solar energy technology more resilient and efficient.

Source: CNN Technology

Date: March 7th, 2019

Link: https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/06/tech/yotta-solar/index.html

Discussion

1) Data centers and cloud service provision centers consume enormous amounts of electricity.  How could this technology help?

2) Most residential solar panels, the ones you see on house roofs, are “grid-tied”.  Grid-tied means they only produce electricity when tied to the electricity grid.  Why are they “grid-tied”?

Posted by & filed under Huawei.

“it’s hard to see how – given Huawei’s role in providing equipment and key ICT services to the AU building and specifically to the AU’s data centre – the company could have remained completely unaware of the apparent theft of large amounts of data, every day, for five years.”

Source: BBC Technology News

Date: March 6th, 2019

Link: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/resources/idt-sh/Huawei

Discussion

1) “Huawei was given the status of a Chinese “national champion”. In practice, this meant the government closed the market to foreign competition.”  The Chinese government says that Huawei is independent of it.  How likely is this?

2) Why does it matter to western companies and governments that Huawei is likely part of the Chinese government?

Posted by & filed under Amazon, Ethical issues.

The concerns tied to devices like Amazon's wristbands range from the potential for discrimination to data security risks for the company's employees.Amazon recently won patents for wristbands that could be used as part of an inventory system, communicating with equipment in warehouses and nudging employees via vibrations if, for example, they were about to place items in the wrong bins. But in a world where the legal limits on gathering and using people’s data remain largely undefined, use of such devices could quickly turn nefarious, some experts say.

Source: Chicago Tribune

Date: February 28th, 2019

Link: http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-amazon-wristbands-privacy-20180215-story.html

Discussion

1) What sorts of other uses could this technology be put to other than tracking the people who work in the warehouses at Amazon?

2) Is this really an invasion of privacy or more an attempt by Amazon to improve workplace safety and efficiency?

Posted by & filed under Cyber Security, Internet of Things.

In a May study of 553 IT decision makers, 78% said they thought it was at least somewhat likely that their businesses would suffer data loss or theft enabled by IoT devices. Some 72% said the speed at which IoT is advancing makes it harder to keep up with evolving security requirements.

Source: Wired Magazine

Date: February 28th, 2019

Link: https://www.wired.com/brandlab/2017/06/iot-is-coming-even-if-the-security-isnt-ready-heres-what-to-do/?intcid=polar

Discussion

1) What sorts of things are included in IoT (Internet of Things)?

2) Why are IoT devices so useful to hackers and problematic for the rest of us?

Posted by & filed under Marketing.

The top two digital advertisers in the United States — Google and Facebook — are expected to maintain their dominant hold on ad dollars, as the tech giants’ combined ad revenue will command about 59 per cent of the market, according to forecasts by eMarketer.

The top two digital advertisers in the United States — Google and Facebook — are expected to maintain their dominant hold on ad dollars, as the tech giants’ combined ad revenue will command about 59 per cent of the market, according to forecasts by eMarketer.

The increase in digital ad dollars will come, in part, from sharp declines in key print ad formats including directories such as the Yellow Pages, whose ad spending will fall by 19 per cent, and the print versions of newspapers and magazines where ad spending is expected to decrease by about 18 per cent, eMarketer said. Ad spending on TV will decline 2.2 per cent this year, to about $71 billion, eMarketer said.

Source: Washington Post

Date: February 22nd, 2019

Link: https://www.thestar.com/business/technology/2019/02/20/digital-advertising-to-surpass-print-tv-for-the-first-time-report-says.html

Discussion

1) Want to be in marketing?  What are you doing to prepare yourself to understand digital platforms?

2) Will digital marketing ever totally dominate print and TV advertising?