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Saturday, April 25, 2015

Tweeps Are People Too!!

I woke up this morning to the devastating news about the earthquake in Nepal. Sitting here in California  that destruction is literally on the other side of the world but my mind immediately went to thinking about my good friend Jeremy Geelan. See Jeremy and his family have been living in Kathmandu for a while now. His wife, in fact, is the Danish Ambassador to Nepal!
Being a social media kind of guy, I immediately went online to see if Jeremy was active, but then the other shoe dropped. I realized that I was selfishly neglecting my global online readership! A quick look at TweepsMap confirmed that I had at least 10 tweeps in Kathmandu and another in Itahari, Sunsari, in the eastern part of the country!!


After sending out a few queries on Twitter and Facebook I soon received word that Jeremy and family were OK. I also had exchanges with a few other readers, the first of which was Suyash Chhetri, who is also safe with his family.


For me this personal experience proved that Tweep Are People Too!  They are not just faceless names and numbers. It also once again highlighted how much we are all connected.

My prayers to all that are enduring the pain and suffering of this horrible tragedy.

( This content is being syndicated through multiple channels. The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of GovCloud Network, GovCloud Network Partners or any other corporation or organization.)


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( Thank you. If you enjoyed this article, get free updates by email or RSS - © Copyright Kevin L. Jackson 2015)



Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The CISO role in cybersecurity: Solo or team sport?




The average length of time in the commercial sector between a network security breach and when the detection of that breach is more than 240 days, according to Gregory Touhill, deputy assistant secretary of Cybersecurity Operations and Programs for the Department of Homeland Security. What could happen to your company during that eight-month period? Could your company survive?
This alarming statistic is just one of the reasons why the National Cybersecurity Institute at Excelsior College (NCI) undertook the task of surveying the nation’s chief information security officers. With the support of social media campaigns from Dell cybersecurity and the International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium, also known as ISC(2), NCI was able to collect a statistically significant number of responses across eight industry verticals. Although a formal analysis of the data is still being conducted, some important early revelations have already been identified.

While the overall survey broadly covered the domain, one of the most interesting insights for me came from a high-level response from just three questions:
  • What are the top three items/resources you need to accomplish your job?
  • Which of the following are the top five sources of application security risk within your organization?
  • Which of the following five skill sets best prepares someone to become a chief information security officer?
The survey designers worked hard not to focus just on the technical aspects of the CISO role. To that end, respondents had to choose from nine job resources, 10 security risk options and 11 specific skill sets. They also enjoyed the option of writing in a response. Although every option on each of these three questions had some takers, the most predominant answers were:
  • The top resource needed to accomplish the CISO job is the support of other management leaders.
  • The top source of application security risk is a lack of awareness of application security issues within the organization; and
  • The best skill set for preparing someone to become a CISO is a statistical tie between business knowledge and knowledge of IT security best practices.
Some may find it surprising that neither technical knowledge, technical skills nor the technology itself is an overwhelming favorite for the surveyed professionals. So with that observation, what truths can we learn from this answer set?

To be sure, additional analysis and rigor are needed, but from a personal point of view this early data hints that technical knowledge is not the primary CISO skill requirement. It also tips a hat toward the need for robust internal education as well a focus for reducing application security risks. For me, it also shows that a good CISO must also be a collaborative and communicative teacher across his or her organization. Is it me or do these traits describe a team leader or coach?

If you are a CISO, do these traits describe you? Are education and collaboration a core part of your company’s cybersecurity plan? Have you enabled management to give you the support needed for your own success? Can you describe yourself as the cyber team coach?

(This post was written as part of the Dell Insight Partners program, which provides news and analysis about the evolving world of tech. To learn more about tech news and analysis visit Tech Page One. Dell sponsored this article, but the opinions are my own and don’t necessarily represent Dell’s positions or strategies.)


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( Thank you. If you enjoyed this article, get free updates by email or RSS - © Copyright Kevin L. Jackson 2015)



Monday, March 30, 2015

Setting standards for IoT can capitalize on future growth

by Melvin Greer
Managing Director
Greer Institute for Leadership and Innovation


The adoption of Internet of Things (IoT) appears to be unquestioned. Advances in wearables and sensors are strategic to tech companies, telecoms and manufacturers across multiple domains. Everyone from millennials to boomers is incorporating IoT technologies into the daily flow of life. Gartner says the IoT market will be $300 million in 2020. With all this projected growth, standards will play an increasing role in IoT adoption.

A number of IoT standards initiatives are setting the pace. The AllSeen Alliance has developed AllJoyn, an open-source protocol that provides tools for connecting and managing devices on Wi-Fi networks. Manufacturers are starting to use the AllJoyn framework to create custom apps, complete with control and notification services.

Dell and Intel announced their Open InterConnect Consortium (OIC) as another collaborative targeting open-source development and deployment. The OIC wants to accelerate development of IoT interoperability standards by defining a common communication framework to wirelessly connect devices, control the flow of information between devices and enhance the autonomy of interconnected devices. This OIC has also formed a strategic alliance with the Industrial Internet Consortium that will help achieve the targeted interoperability and accelerate the development of global IoT standards.


Developing IoT standards will have a significant impact on multiple verticals, including:
  • Energy and utilities IoT capabilities will drive advances in production, distribution, smart-grid data infrastructure development and predictive analytics.
  • Healthcare – IoT deployment on healthcare will lead to patient-focused home care, remote controlled medical devices, sensor-embedded medicine and improved quality of life at lower cost
  • Transportation – Flexible transportation systems that can respond to changing demands, improved fuel efficiency, predictive analytics to enhance mean time to failure calculations for critical equipment and speed optimization are key benefits of transportation IoT adoption.
In an effort to capitalize on IoT future growth, Dell has opened a new IoT Lab in Silicon Valley. The lab, free to Dell customers, is focused on research, testing and development of IoT systems. The lab is effective in creating rapid prototypes that demonstrate the innovative potential of IoT technologies.

IoT development and adoption will significantly transform our personal and work lives, so it’s important for IT leaders and business decision-makers to understand the technologies in play and participate in the development of standards that will influence IoT adoption.


(This post was written as part of the Dell Insight Partners program, which provides news and analysis about the evolving world of tech. To learn more about tech news and analysis visit Tech Page One. Dell sponsored this article, but the opinions are my own and don’t necessarily represent Dell’s positions or strategies.)

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Cloud Musings
( Thank you. If you enjoyed this article, get free updates by email or RSS - © Copyright Kevin L. Jackson 2015)



Thursday, March 19, 2015

Women in tech: Meet the trailblazers of STEM equality

Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals are drivers of innovation,creativity and invention. STEM disciplines are significant drivers of economies worldwide, and STEM careers are rewarding and fulfilling. The promise of STEM is therefore important for economies and individuals; however, in most countries around the world, we do not have STEM professionals that reflect the gender makeup of our population.

As we celebrate Women’s History Month, I share more information on the issue and potential solutions. I also profile women technology trailblazers who have made significant contributions to STEM and our global society.

There are over 316 million people in the U.S.; 49.2 percent male and 50.8 percent female, according to the U.S. Census. While women currently hold more than 51.6 percent of all professional occupations in the U.S., only 26.7 percent are in computing-related occupations.

Companies with employees from diverse backgrounds tend to be more creative and profitable. A large body of evidence exists to substantiate this assertion. Diverse collaborative teams leverage a broader perspective of experiences and ideas. They create more innovative products and services that appeal to a wider, global audience.

Sadly, there are many factors that enable gender bias in STEM disciplines. Some include socialization for girls, subtle biases in school and at work, and how women approach the workplace. For example, women tend to downplay their skills and are sometimes challenged by salary discussions. A recent Yale University study found that men and women tend to subconsciously chose men over women with the same skills. In addition, when women are chosen, they are offered lowered salaries than the men.

There are many solutions to this complex issue, including educating the workforce on these subtle biases, developing and participating in pre-college outreach programs, providing mentoring, coaching and other support and having access to visible role models. For example, a few years ago a friend shared with me that his daughter did not believe successful women engineers exist. I invited her, her parents and several of my STEM girlfriends over for lunch. We spent the afternoon sharing, encouraging and inspiring. Years later, this young lady is still excited about that lunch and is planning to become a future engineer.

Here are five technology trailblazers who walk among us. They have made valuable contributions to our global society and provide inspiration for many. We honor them as innovative women who have changed the world.

  • Maria Azua, Ph.D.  is the Global Head of Infrastructure Engineering at Barclays. Prior to this role she held several technical leadership and executive positions at IBM. She is an author and inventor with 99 issued and pending patents. She is a member of the Women in Technology International (WITI) Hall of Fame.
  • Nancy Jackson, Ph.D.is the Manager, International Chemical Threat Reduction Department at Sandia National Laboratories, and currently on sabbatical at the United States Department of State. She works with scientists around the world to help volatile regions manage their chemical inventories and secure their chemicals. Dr. Jackson is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
  • Shawna Lemon, Ph.D. is a shareholder with Myers Bigel Sibley & Sajovec, P.A., a full-service intellectual property firm. She is a scientist and a patent attorney with a focus on biotechnology. Dr. Lemon has been included in The Best Lawyers in America® (2015) and Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite (2014).
  • Joan Mitchell, Ph.D. is a leading developer of image compression methods and co-inventor of jpeg. She is the co-editor of the jpeg standard, is co-author of the definitive jpeg textbook, and co-author of a book on mpeg. She has over 110 patents and dozens more pending. Dr. Mitchell is a retired IBM Fellow, a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and a member of the National Academy of Engineering.
  • Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan, Ph.D. is the Founder and CEO of Drawbridge, a startup company that provides technology-based marketing services for mobile devices. She was previously the Lead Scientist with AdMob, which has been acquired by Google. Dr. Sivaramakrishnan’s work is onboard New Horizons, NASA’s spacecraft heading towards Pluto and beyond.
I invite you to reach out to young ladies and encourage them to pursue STEM disciplines or to participate in mentoring and coaching programs. You may start with the IEEE Women in Engineering, the Society of Women Engineers or Women in Technology International.

Editor’s Note: This article was updated on 3/18/2015 to clarify the number of issued and pending patents by Maria Azua, Ph.D.


( This post was written as part of the Dell Insight Partners program, which provides news and analysis about the evolving world of tech. To learn more about tech news and analysis visit Tech Page One. Dell sponsored this article, but the opinions are my own and don’t necessarily represent Dell’s positions or strategies.)
 
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Cloud Musings
( Thank you. If you enjoyed this article, get free updates by email or RSS - © Copyright Kevin L. Jackson 2015)



Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Cloud Acquisition Strategy, Customized to the Right Cloud Model

by
Melvin Greer
Managing Director, Greer Institute 





This year has brought big news, significant changes and increased awareness of the adoption of cloud computing in Government. In fact Cloud computing may be the biggest and most overhyped term in Government information technology today.   It is also the most discussed topic in agency strategy, cyber security forums and mission / program reviews.  While lots of conversation has been devoted to technology and the benefits that government customers can derive from Cloud, in the end the biggest challenge may be the acquisition of cloud services. Cloud computing presents a different set of acquisition challenges to the federal government and this shift requires a rethinking the agency acquisition process. Smart purchasing decisions require an understanding of security requirements, service models and service level agreements.

Clearly adherence to the Federal Risk Authorization and Risk Management  (FedRAMP) cloud security requirements are central to acquisition of cloud services. This includes issues like data location and jurisdiction, privacy, and eDiscovery, as they are very important in a service-based environment.

An enhanced view of cloud acquisition involves the mapping of the right acquisition strategy with the right cloud deployment model. The dominant cloud deployment model in Government is the hybrid cloud model. Given that agencies will not likely limit themselves to one cloud deployment but will rather incorporate different and overlapping cloud services the acquisition strategy for the hybrid model will need to provide the flexibility necessary to map to the varying deployment models.

By focusing on a customized acquisition strategy in contracting for cloud services, agencies can reduce the risk of vendor lock-in, improve portability, and encourage competition.  With these goals in mind, agencies will want to establish explicit Service Level Agreement (SLA) information for security, continuity of operations, and service quality and the impact on the cloud service provider of not meeting SLA metrics.

By developing a cloud acquisition strategy that comprehends security requirements, service models and service level agreement metrics, agencies can acquire the benefits of cloud adoption required to meet their mission needs.  Learn more about the acquisition of Cloud in the ViON eBook, “The Business of Cloud”

http://www.vion.com/
 


JOIN VION
on
https://www.linkedin.com/groups/Business-Cloud-8248605


( This content is being syndicated through multiple channels. The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of GovCloud Network, GovCloud Network Partners or any other corporation or organization.)

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Cloud Musings
( Thank you. If you enjoyed this article, get free updates by email or RSS - © Copyright Kevin L. Jackson 2015)