Archive for June 9, 2021

Your Guide to Stage 2 Of The Rainbow Six North American League

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

It’s time to muster all the Canadian Pride you can and get ready for the upcoming kick-off to Stage 2 of the Rainbow Six North American League!

The North American League was truly exciting during Stage 1. With Oxygen Esports taking everyone by surprise with their place at the top of the standings; we all witnessed the pure talent that NA has to offer. We are ecstatic to continue this emotional rollercoaster with our 9 NAL teams during Stage 2.

STAGE 2 SCHEDULE

WHERE TO WATCH

For more information, please see the full guide to Stage 2 of the North American League HERE.

#Fail: Yesterday’s Internet Outage Was Caused By A Single Customer

Posted in Commentary on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

Yesterday a number of major websites went down due to a failure with a content delivery network provider. Now we know what happened. A single customer managed to take down a significant portion of the Internet:

A major internet blackout that hit many high-profile websites on Tuesday has been blamed on a software bug.

Fastly, the cloud-computing company responsible for the issues, said the bug had been triggered when one of its customers had changed their settings.

The outage has raised questions about relying on a handful of companies to run the vast infrastructure that underpins the internet.

Fastly apologised and said the problem should have been anticipated.

The outage, which lasted about an hour, hit some popular websites such as Amazon, Reddit, the Guardian and the New York Times.

And:

The company operates servers at strategic points around the world to help customers move and store content close to their end users.

But a customer quite legitimately changing their settings had exposed a bug in a software update issued to customers in mid-May, causing “85% of our network to return errors”, it said.

That’s not good and I think that someone in Fastly’s QA department is about to get a talking to. Not to mention that I think that there will be tighter controls on what changes customers can make so that something like this can’t happen again as one single change from one customer should not take down a significant portion of the Internet.

Salesforce Expands Its Financial Services Offerings For Corporate & Investment Banking

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

Salesforce today announced Corporate and Investment Banking for Financial Services Cloud, new technology to help bankers and deal teams deepen relationships with clients, manage deal interactions on one platform and compliantly collaborate and share sensitive information relevant to a deal.

As the pandemic made clear, industries need to innovate fast to stay relevant. Financial services is no exception; investment bankers need digital technology to drive efficiency, build and deepen relationships with customers, and win more deals. They also require a single view of large amounts of client data, integrated in one platform, to help avoid mismanagement and improve quality. 

In addition, compliance officers are working in a banking landscape wrought with regulatory complexities, including managing sensitive information like material nonpublic information and assessing potential conflicts of interest. Banks can suffer reputation damage, business disruption, regulatory fines and revenue loss if sensitive information is mismanaged, conflicts of interest are not caught in time, or compliance is not securely maintained.

Corporate and Investment Banking for Financial Services Cloud is designed to deliver a complete experience across the client journey, and supports new integrations with Tableau CRM and Einstein Relationship Insights (ERI) to provide bankers with purpose-built technology. This includes:

  • Maximizing banker efficiency and productivity. Investment bankers can manage the entire deal lifecycle while tracking deal activities and client interactions on one platform from anywhere. Using Salesforce low code tools, they can automate deal execution processes related to M&A, capital raising and corporate restructuring. With the power of Tableau CRM for Financial Services, bankers can use deal analytics to optimize their deal pipeline and client engagement with access to historical client data, previous pitches and meeting notes all in one place — and from the device of their choice.
  • Uncovering relationships with an AI-based research tool. ERI is a new relationship discovery tool integrated with Financial Services Cloud. It automatically highlights relevant personnel or companies in sources such as a press release, news article, or email, to surface relevant connections and discover unanticipated relationships. For example, if a banker wants an introduction to a prospective client, ERI is able to search unstructured data and text on the web, such as a new board member announcement, uncovering that the prospect sits on the same non-profit board as one of the banker’s connections, providing the opportunity for a warm introduction. 
  • Ensuring compliance for client engagement. Investment banks can maintain compliance by ensuring sensitive client or deal data is only shared with relevant stakeholders. For example, if a banker is working on a sensitive M&A deal, she can ensure her colleagues trading related stocks do not have a view into the prospective M&A deal under consideration. Also, a banker can initiate the client onboarding process from Salesforce, and track the progress with partner solutions.
  • Leveraging data as a strategic advantage. Bankers often need to log into seven or eight systems to access relevant information to their deal. Now, bankers can integrate internal data on deal mandates with external market data from partners — such as S&P Global — for a full view of their clients. Bankers can access company valuation from S&P Global while viewing information such as revenue, employee salaries, and other potential risks all within Salesforce, avoiding the need to switch between multiple applications.

Major banking institutions are already leveraging Salesforce to engage more deeply with their clients:

  • Evercore, a leading global independent investment banking advisory firm, recognized the value a robust technology platform could bring to their business. Evercore selected the Salesforce platform to create a secure, centralized solution designed to provide bankers with access to relevant client information. As a customer, Evercore will benefit from the innovation delivered through Corporate and Investment Banking for Financial Services Cloud focusing on client relationship mapping, internal collaboration and other functionalities specifically designed to deliver a more personalized experience for investment bankers.
  • TD is one of the largest banks in North America. As part of its strategic technology roadmap, TD is building a unified banking experience including leveraging the Salesforce platform across their businesses.  Within TD Securities, a comprehensive Salesforce-driven CRM solution is being implemented to help bring leading products and trusted advice to their clients.
  • Moelis & Co. is a global independent investment bank that provides financial advisory services to corporations, governments, and financial sponsors. With Salesforce, Moelis & Co. is able to better streamline banker processes. The mobile-first application keeps bankers and deal teams updated on recent client activity and using passively collected data, they are creating more efficient ways to gather suggested relationships for bankers to rate. With this technology, bankers have more visibility into client relationships across the firm, enabling them to better collaborate and maintain a well-coordinated presence with their clients.

Salesforce has an extensive partner ecosystem that provides unique expertise and solutions for financial institutions globally. ISV partners such as S&P Global Market Intelligence and Fenergo extend and complement the value of Financial Services Cloud. Additionally, consulting partners KPMG, Silverline and VASS are experts in corporate and investment banking and are equipped to implement financial services solutions tailored for individual customers.

Built on the world’s #1 CRM platform, Financial Services Cloud enables financial services institutions to build trust by unifying the customer experience across channels, geographies, and lines of business — both consumer and commercial. With purpose-built industry functionality and all the capabilities of Sales Cloud and Service Cloud, financial services firms can increase employee productivity, accelerate time to value, and deepen customer trust with every interaction. Learn more about Salesforce Financial Services Cloud here.

Corporate and Investment Banking for Financial Services Cloud will be generally available in Summer 2021.

No Holidays For Cyber-Attacks Says Darktrace

Posted in Commentary on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

While businesses and employees take time off to enjoy holidays and warm weather over the summer, they may not realize the increased risk to cyber-attacks they are leaving behind when they mentally and physically log off from the workplace. 

Darktrace, the world’s leading cyber AI company, regularly observes an increase in attacks during holidays and on weekends. In fact, in 76 per cent of ransomware infections, the encryption process begins after hours or during the weekend, when threat actors often rely on the slower detection and response during out-of-hours times.  

Time is everything when it comes to cyber-attacks, and with increasing numbers of machine-speed attacks it is clear now more than ever that AI-based detection and response is critical so that even when the office is closed or the laptop is switched off, your security remains on.  

With autonomous response, security never takes a holiday, staying active around the clock to protect businesses from threats by stopping cyber-attacks in the early stages, giving security teams time to react and remediate the cause of any incidents.

If you are a business who wants to better protect their networks ahead of summer holidays. I would recommend reaching out to Darktrace today.

Biden Dumps Plan To Ban TikTok… But Plans A Security Review Instead

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

Here’s the good news if you are TikTok. Biden isn’t going to ban you. Here’s the bad news. You’re getting a review along with any other app that is tied to a country that the US doesn’t like:

President Joe Biden signed an executive order Wednesday revoking the Trump-era bans on TikTok and WeChat. In place of the Trump order, Biden will direct the commerce secretary to investigate apps with ties to foreign adversaries that may pose a risk to American data privacy or national security.

And:

Wednesday’s order calls on the Commerce Department and other federal agencies to work together to craft recommendations to protect against the collection, sale, and transfer of sensitive US consumer data to foreign adversaries. The Commerce Department is expected to then make recommendations for future executive actions or legislation to address these concerns.

But there’s a catch:

Still, the order does not address actions or investigations taken by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, or CFIUS. Under the Trump administration, CFIUS set several deadlines for apps like TikTok to divest itself from its Chinese owner ByteDance. For several months, Oracle was reportedly set to purchase TikTok in order to stave off the former administration’s ban, although the deal never came to fruition.

“The CFIUS action remains under active discussion by the US government,” a senior administration official said Wednesday.

This should be interesting to watch.

WW Announces An Update For Hot Vax Summer

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

Just in time for what many are coining ‘hot vax summer,’ WW (formerly Weight Watchers) has added having sex as an activity to track in its app, earning FitPoints for engaging in ‘adult activity.’ 

While the science shows that sex doesn’t give you the most sweat-inducing workout, in the spirit of ‘move in ways that move you,’ WW is hoping members who are ready to embrace the hottest summer yet can have some fun and make it count.

You can get the app for iOS and Android and you can click here for more details.

Mass Timber Specialist Adera Adopts Procore Construction Management Platform

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

Procore Technologies, Inc., a leading provider of construction management software, today announced that Adera Development Corporation, a pioneer in sustainable mass timber construction, has chosen Procore as its construction management platform.

Founded in 1969, Vancouver-based Adera has built a reputation in wood frame residential construction. SmartWood™, its proprietary Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) material, further builds on innovations in energy, safety and sound efficiency. Adera used SmartWood™ on recent projects including Crest, a 179-unit residential project in North Vancouver. 

Adera needed a project management solution that was capable of tracking the complex Crest project and sharing timely information with internal and external stakeholders, especially its subcontractor partners. Following completion of the Crest project, Adera estimated that by using Procore, its efficiency during the framing process improved by 30 per cent. Moreover, Adera estimates savings of approximately $1,500 per unit using Procore when Crest was compared to other past projects. The savings stemmed from holding trades accountable regarding deficiency work.

The company successfully managed the construction of the project with Procore, including scheduling tradespeople, monitoring safety and managing RFIs. It was also able to leverage the platform to show government partners the high professional standard of its project management. With Procore, the Adera team supports its development side with greater transparency and more data than would otherwise be available. 

Adera plans to roll out Procore’s financial tools in the future, and further integrate the platform into how it manages projects. Learn more about how Adera is using Procore to manage the complex build of Crest: https://www.procore.org/en-ca/casestudies/adera

Commvault Announces Enhanced Managed Service Provider & Aggregator Partner Programs

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

Data management provider Commvault today announced enhancements to its Managed Service Provider (MSP) and Aggregator Partner Advantage Programs designed to support the way Commvault’s MSP and Aggregator partners operate while also fulfilling their unique needs for delivering Commvault services to customers of different sizes.

Organizations are increasingly looking toward managed service providers for consumption-based solutions and as a result, Commvault has evolved its Partner Advantage Program to offer MSPs and Aggregators multiple ways to partner and earn incentives.

The MSP Partner Advantage Program offers a range of benefits that allow partners to easily build on existing services and create new ones for their customers. The program offers two tiers with tier promotional requirements and incentives, rewarding partners for driving consumption. MSP partners are also provided with flexible licensing and consumption options that include both subscription and utility agreements. 

In addition, Commvault plans to add Metallic for MSPs to its Partner Advantage Program later this year, enabling its MSP partners to broaden their service catalogues and grow their business with the agility of SaaS.

Guest Post: Atlas VPN Says That Cyberattacks Surge By 33% In A Year

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

Over the recent years, we hear about cyberattacks much more due to the constant increase in internet users and technology growth. 

According to the data presented by the Atlas VPN team, cyberattacks have increased by 33% since last year. The total amount of malicious attacks in Q1 rose from 538 in 2020 to 713 in 2021. 

In January 2020, there were a total of 160 cyberattacks. Meanwhile, January 2021 saw 183  malicious attacks — 14% more than the same month last year. 

Looking at February’s numbers, we can see a tremendous increase in cyberattacks in 2021 compared to 2020. Malicious attacks jumped by 33% from 191 in 2020 to 254 in 2021. 

In March 2021, cyberattacks grew more than 50% compared to March2 020. The total number of attacks went up from 187 to 276

Cybersecurity writer and researcher at Atlas VPN William Sword shares his thoughts on the increase of cyberattacks: 

“A significant increase in cyberattacks has shown that many companies or government administrations are not prepared to handle cybersecurity threats. With more and more people becoming victims of hackers, responsible institutions should step up their efforts in the cybersecurity field.”

Most used cyberattack techniques 

Cybercriminals employ various techniques to penetrate vulnerable systems. 

Malware continues to be one of the most used techniques for cyberattacks. In Q1 2021 it was employed in 32% of all cyberattack cases. Hackers use malware to trick a victim into providing personal data for identity theft. 

Unknown attacks were the second most-used in the first quarter of this year at 22%. The unknown threat is classified as such when a security product cannot recognize its code, which is why it is tough to stop such attacks. 

Next up is account takeover (ATO). This type of cyberattack technique was used in 14% of all cyberattacks in Q1 2021. 

To read the full article, head over to: https://atlasvpn.com/blog/cyberattacks-surge-by-33-in-a-year

Another Pipeline Has Been Pwned By Hackers…. And This Time They Have Leaked Data

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 9, 2021 by itnerd

When hackers pwned Colonial Pipeline last month and shut off the distribution of gas along much of the East Coast of the United States, the world woke up to the danger of digital disruption of the petrochemical pipeline industry. Now it appears another pipeline-focused business was also hit by a ransomware crew around the same time, but kept its breach quiet — even as 70 gigabytes of its internal files were stolen and dumped onto the dark web:

A group identifying itself as Xing Team last month posted to its dark web site a collection of files stolen from LineStar Integrity Services, a Houston-based company that sells auditing, compliance, maintenance, and technology services to pipeline customers. The data, first spotted online by the WikiLeaks-style transparency group Distributed Denial of Secrets, or DDoSecrets, includes 73,500 emails, accounting files, contracts, and other business documents, around 19 GB of software code and data, and 10 GB of human resources files that includes scans of employee driver’s licenses and Social Security cards. And while the breach doesn’t appear to have caused any disruption to infrastructure like the Colonial Pipeline incident, security researchers warn the spilled data could provide hackers a roadmap to more pipeline targeting. LineStar did not respond to requests for comment.

This isn’t good as clearly this is going to affect employees first as this info will be a springboard for things like identity theft for example.

But the larger issue is this. Critical infrastructure like this needs to be disconnected from the public Internet until a real solution to security is provided. Or just be disconnected forever. This kind of pwnage will happen EVERY SINGLE DAY as it has been for the last few years. Companies need either to stop doing what is easy and start doing what is secure, or be forced to do it. The other thing that needs to happen is that countries who are the victims of these attacks should sanctioning countries heavily where these threat actors originate from. That would start to force some of these countries to ensure that their citizens behave better. But I guess I expect too much.