Why big businesses get an ‘F’ in big data

Our weekly roundup looks at why big is better for the new iPad Pro, and anti-cybercrime tips from a Secret Service agent


Big data fail

Analysts and enterprise organizations tend to talk big about big data, however, a recent survey of 1,800 senior business leaders of companies in North America and Europe revealed that only a small percentage of businesses are using effective data management practices.

The study by Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC) and Iron Mountain titled “How organizations can unlock value and insight from the information they hold,” reported that 75 per cent of businesses of all sizes, location and sectors felt they were making the most of their information assets.

However, 43 per cent of companies said they get little tangible benefit from their information while 23 per cent derive no benefit at all.

Three-quarters of organizations lack the skills and technology to use their data to gain a competitive edge over the competition.

Three out of four companies do not have a data analyst. Of those that do, only one quarter use their data analyst competently.

Hot for incubators

The cold north, it seems, is a hotbed of business incubators.

UBI Global, a Stockholm-based research organization focusing on incubator programs, has placed several Canadian universities on the top of its list of leading university-based business incubators.

Ryerson University’s DMZ (Digital Media Zone), an incubator for tech startups, was named on the 2015 North American UBI Global Award as the number one university incubator in North America. Last year, DMZ was ranked number two.

Innovate Calgary, which is based at the University of Calgary and offers technology transfer and incubator services to researchers, entrepreneurs and businesses in the tech sector, got third place.

Tech Edmonton, a not-for-profit joint venture of the University of Alberta and the Edmonton Economic Development Corporation, placed fourth.

Is bigger better for the iPad Pro?

If you’ve seen and iPad before, then you know already what Apple’s new iPad Pro looks like.

The new tablet 1.57lb tablet is just heavier than its predecessor and bigger as well with its 12.9inch screen.

But just saying that the iPad Pro is bigger than the old iPad doesn’t do justice to the new device, according to a recent review of the tablet by Wired.

One key hurdle for getting iPads into the enterprise was that they devices were unsuited for work.

Find out here how the iPad Pro changes that.

Windows 10 app is in the Box

Microsoft moved to plug the hole in its existing relationship with cloud storage provider Dropbox by partnering with Box.

Earlier this week Box released an app which works with the Windows 10 pile picker. This allows Microsoft Office users to work in Word, PowerPoint or Excel and save their file directly to Box.

Clicking on a file inside the app can also launch Office applications. The app can also send messages to the Windows 10 Notification centre in order to keep users updated on who is doing what within their team.

Users are still waiting for the older Microsoft-Dropbox partnership to produce a Dropbox app for Android and iOS phones and tablets.

HPE’s cloud ambitions

Redefining how it delivers public cloud services to its’ customers is key to Hewlett-Packard Enterprise’s (HPE’s) cloud strategy.

By the end of January next year, HP would have shut down its public cloud. However, according to blogger Chris Lau, HP will be focusing on delivering hybrid cloud solutions.

HP will introduce its customers to HP Helion OpenStack and HP Helion Development Platform but customers that still require public cloud may have to move to Amazon Web Services.

10 riskiest expired applications  

Many users do not realize that applications that have reached their end-of-life date pose a danger to their systems because these programs no longer receive security updates from their original developer, according to research firm Secunia Research.

The company recently released a list of top 10 riskiest expired applications. Among those listed were: Adobe Flash Play 18.x, Oracle Java JRE 1.7.x and 7.x, and Adobe Air 3.x.

Kasper Lindgaar, director of research and security at Secunia has a simple advice: “If a program is end-of-life, uninstall it.”

The best of expertIP

How IT pros can communicate business value

CIOs are always being advised to seek executive buy-in, but how do you actually go about doing that.

The recent Spice World virtual event featured former technology Jason Dimaio who provided some pointers on the topic.

Perhaps the most important lesson Dimaio has to offer to tech professionals on how to translate their IT expertise in terms that CEO can understand is the value of listening.

The lesson is powerful because he speaks from his own experience.

I one company meeting when he was an IT director, Dimaio said he “forgot about how to ask questions” and instead started proposing ideas on how to make the business better.

“I kept offering solutions that were not aligned to their business,” he said. “The business decided I was not of value to them.”

Anti-cybercrime tips for a Secret Service agent

Cyber crook are holding your company’s data hostage and are demanding a steep ransom for its return. What do you do?

For one thing, don’t pay, according to Jason Brown, a U.S. Secret Service agent who delivered the keynote presentation “The Globalization of Cybercrime” during the recently concluded SecTor 2015 IT security conference in Toronto.

There’s no guarantee that you will get you data back even if you pay up, he said.

The best move is to implement a proactive program long before attackers strike.

“Back up all your data, and have your data backed up offline so you can easily restore it. Take your computers offline, wipe them, and update your security settings,” he said.

  1. CIO.com
  2. Techvibes.com
  3. Wired.com
  4. Networkworld.com
  5. ITWorldCanada.com
  6. CSOonline
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