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SOTI extends Android Enterprise on Zebra devices

By Zenobia Hegde

Over the past decade, SOTI and Zebra have had a long partnership working together to meet the enterprise mobility needs of organisations worldwide.

In 2013, Motorola Solutions announced the end of development of their Mobility Services Platforms (MSP) management solution, and selected SOTI MobiControl as the approved EMM solution for their devices. Why? Because SOTI’s industry-leading ability to manage Windows Mobile/CE and Android devices is unmatched; and as Motorola Solutions introduced their first Android devices, SOTI MobiControl naturally was the first EMM solution to support them as their partner of choice, says Shash Anand, vice president, Strategic Alliances at SOTI.

When Motorola Solutions’ Enterprise Business was acquired by Zebra Technologies in 2014, SOTI continued this strong partnership with Zebra—and SOTI MobiControl is still the only EMM solution that Zebra officially resells.

Today, SOTI once again solidifies this decade-long partnership through the release of an update to the SOTI MobiControl Android Enterprise agent that includes support for Zebra management capabilities including:

Provisioning of Mobility Extensions (Mx) to manage Zebra device-specific settings
Over-the-air (OTA) deployment of Zebra operating system (OS) updates
SOTI MobiControl agent persistence when a Zebra device is enterprise reset

For any IT Director/Manager tasked with the responsibility to maintain Android devices across the enterprise, this release is game-changing: it marks the first time any Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) solution is able to support OS updates and agent persistence on Zebra Android devices managed using Android Enterprise capabilities.

What does this mean for organisations?

Since Google first introduced Android Enterprise (formerly known as Android for Work) in February of 2015 as a framework for standardizing the management of Android devices, it has quickly become the preferred method for many organizations to manage their Android devices.

Android Enterprise’s broad management capabilities, including the ability to separate personal and work data on personally-enabled devices and integration with Google Play services for app distribution, were able to address the majority of the management and security requirements of organizations. But for many organisations, the majority was not enough.

Organizations that rely on business-critical mobility have business-critical line-of-business (LOB) apps running on work devices such as those offered by Zebra. Imagine being a retailer who uses an app on a handheld that scans for prices. What if that app stopped working after an update to the device’s OS? The downtime and loss of business could be significant.

When many of your core business tasks are dependent on mobile technology, the ability to control OS updates and automatically retain management of all devices (some possibly unmanned) after OS updates becomes paramount.

Currently, such capabilities are not available through Android Enterprise. With the latest update to its Android Enterprise agent, SOTI MobiControl becomes the first EMM solution in the industry to bridge this gap on Zebra Android devices.

Which Zebra devices can take advantage of the new enhancements to the SOTI MobiControl Android Enterprise agent?

Most Zebra devices outfitted with Android N or greater running the SOTI MobiControl Android Enterprise agent 13.4, build 1485 or higher will support the new features. The agent is available on Google Play and can be download from SOTI’s OEM downloads page by selecting “Android Enterprise” in the Manufacturer drop-down list.

To […]

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Cyber threats are still being ‘brushed aside’ even after WannaCry and NotPetya, says AlienVault global survey

By Zenobia Hegde

Just 16% of IT security professionals believe that their bosses and company boards have taken a greater interest in their roles as a result of the WannaCry and NotPetya cyber-attacks of 2017. This is according to new research conducted by Unified Security Management and crowd-sourced threat intelligence specialist, AlienVault.

The research, which surveyed 233 IT professionals globally about how their roles have changed following these high-profile attacks, found that just 14% have had their budgets for cyber security increased, and only a fifth (20%) have been able to implement changes or projects that were previously put on hold.

Risks grow yet budgets fall

The findings follow a separate research report from PwC which found that UK businesses have cut their cyber security budgets by a third, compared to the same point last year.

As Javvad Malik, security advocate at AlienVault, explains: “WannaCry and NotPetya are generally believed to have marked a turning point in cyber awareness, but the reality on the ground paints a different picture. Destructive malware poses existential threats to companies across all industries and can no longer be ignored. To improve our cyber resilience, corporate strategy needs to be developed that covers how to plan for, detect, mitigate and recover from such destructive attacks.”

Increased workloads

Worryingly, 13% of IT professionals whose organisations were affected by WannaCry or NotPetya felt that they were blamed for their organisations falling victim. As a result, many IT teams have worked hard to strengthen their organisation’s cyber security in the wake of these attacks.

Two-thirds (66%) are more up-to-date with patching than they were previously, and half (50%) say that they are now using threat intelligence more regularly, to stay ahead of emerging threats. In addition, 58% carried out a review of their organisation’s cyber security posture following the attacks.

Javvad Malik continues, “Working life has become much more difficult for many IT professionals in the wake of these attacks. But the preventative measures that many are engaged in, such as patching and security reviews, points towards a panicked reaction from management tiers. Given the unpredictable nature of today’s security environment, organisations should focus their efforts on detection and response.”

Changing perceptions

The research also explored whether IT professionals have noticed any changes in the way others treat them, following the high volumes of media attention around WannaCry and NotPetya. Almost a quarter (23%) reported that their family and friends are more interested now in hearing about their work. In addition, 28% believe that most people in their organisations listen to their IT advice more than they did before.

However, despite the widely reported IT security skills shortage, just 10% of those surveyed have experienced an increase in job offers, or managed to negotiate a pay increase, following the attacks.

Javvad Malik adds, “The IT security profession remains a very tough place to work, where resilience is the key to success – particularly if you are blamed in the event of your company suffering a security incident.”

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CEBIT puts the spotlight on IT security and data security

By Zenobia Hegde

CEBIT‘s approach resonates with current industry thinking. For example, in its most recent report on the state of IT security in Germany, the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) described data security as “the cornerstone of successful digitisation”.

Moreover, some 95% of the IT experts and IT security specialists surveyed in a recent study by Germany’s National Initiative for Information and Internet Security (NIFIS) anticipate that 2018 will be characterised by a growing awareness of data protection and security issues. However, one of the problems with IT security is that many users just don’t have the necessary skills or expertise.

A recent survey by German IT association Bitkom notes that, while 88% of computer owners make some effort to secure their machines, only about a third are confident they have the technical know-how needed to do so effectively.

Against this background, CEBIT’s role is to educate, inform and help with the implementation of suitable security measures. For security managers and IT professionals from large and mid-size enterprises as well as directors and IT users from small firms and startups, CEBIT is an opportunity to learn what tools and strategies they need in order to detect cyberattacks and what support is available for setting up IT security systems.

CEBIT has forums where experts will present on current best practice and insights in the implementation of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). There will also be presentation events on efficient and cost-effective IT security solutions specifically for SMEs.

CEBIT’s IT Security display will be even bigger in 2018, occupying two halls (12 and 13) for the first time. As well as an exhibition zone, it will feature several speaking stages where, every day of the show, experts will discuss key issues in IT security from multiple perspectives, ranging from hands-on practical to out-of-the-box visionary.

The Expert Stages in halls 12 and 13 have a diverse program that includes security showcases and presentations on individual security technologies. The topics and issues up for discussion here include IT security for fintech companies and the security implications of IoT and AI. Among the highlights will be a series of lectures on employee awareness of security issues in relation to the use of company data and devices. These lectures are designed to provide practical information that visitors can use to improve their IT security.

Mikko Hypponen

One of the big-name speakers on stage will be the penetration tester and IT security expert Sebastian Schreiber, who will report on how hackers work and how he, as a white-hat hacker, goes about exposing security vulnerabilities. Schreiber’s vision of the future is not altogether reassuring: “The more we use IT systems, the more we become dependent on them. Eventually our planet will be run by an almighty IT system – which will be open to manipulation and abuse by hackers from around the world.”

Meanwhile, the focus on Centre Stage in Hall 12 will be on new and emerging online threats. Among much else, the discussion here will focus on Europe’s cybersecurity strategy and the […]

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NTT Communications to acquire Secure-24, a U.S. based managed services provider

By Zenobia Hedge

NTT Communications Corporation, the ICT solutions and international communications business within the NTT Group, and Secure-24 Intermediate Holdings, Inc. , a U.S.-based provider of comprehensive managed services, announced that their respective shareholders entered into a definitive agreement on November 13 (Japan Standard Time), pursuant to which NTT Com will wholly acquire Secure-24.

The demand for managed services is growing steadily worldwide and managed-IT services, one of Secure-24’s core businesses, are expected to see especially significant growth in the U.S. market.

Secure-24 specialises in delivering effective, comprehensive managed services that leverage proprietary, highly automated operation tools. Its clients represent Fortune 1000 companies in sectors including manufacturing, finance, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, insurance, government, transportation and more.

Mike Jennings

NTT Com will leverage Secure-24’s extensive portfolio of managed application and database services, including SAP, SAP HANA, Oracle, Hyperion, JD Edwards, Microsoft, Epic, custom, industry and other mission-critical applications.

Secure-24 is structured for continued growth, fueled by an in-house training academy that builds engineers from a mid-to-long-term perspective. In addition to over 100 industry and partner awards and acknowledgements, Secure-24 has been named one of Computerworld’s 100 Best Places to Work in IT for five consecutive years.

NTT Com and NTT Group companies including Dimension Data expect to combine Secure-24 services with NTT Group capabilities such as cloud to enhance their ability to meet hybrid IT requirements with high-quality managed services that are increasingly in demand worldwide.

“This acquisition brings the unparalleled service levels, application expertise, security and compliance support of Secure-24 to the global NTT community,” said Mike Jennings, CEO of Secure-24.

Going forward, NTT Com will continue supporting the business transformation of customers by steadily enhancing its IT functions and systems, including for evolving applications on cloud platforms, and thereby satisfy expanding needs for diverse, global managed services.

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Inmarsat and Pessl Instruments to deliver IoT solutions to the agriculture sector around the world

By Zenobia Hedge

Inmarsat, the global mobile satellite communications provider, has agreed to enter into a strategic partnership with Pessl Instruments, a provider of advanced agriculture technology solutions, to become its sole connectivity and platforms provider. The partnership promises to speed up the adoption of Internet of Things (IoT) in the agricultural sector by making it possible for customers to take advantage of IoT anywhere on the planet.

Founded in 1984 and headquartered in Austria, Pessl Instruments offers solutions for more informed decision-making in the agricultural sector, including a complete range of wireless, real-time weather, insect, crop growth and real nutrient status solutions. The agritech business, which also operates under the METOS brand, has a direct presence in 13 countries and distribution channels in over 80 countries around the world.

By partnering with Inmarsat, and integrating Inmarsat’s range of IoT capabilities including LoRaWAN (LPWAN), global L-band satellite network and data platforms, with its smart agriculture technology, both Pessl and Inmarsat will be able to offer bespoke IoT solutions to their customers in even the most remote and rural locations around the world, helping them to become more efficient and increase productivity.

Gottfried Pessi

Commenting on the partnership with Inmarsat, Gottfried Pessl, founder and CEO of Pessl Instruments, said: “The Internet of Things is one of the most exciting new technologies to hit the farming and agriculture sectors for decades and the technology is fast leading to the emergence of a cleaner, more sustainable and more profitable industry.

Demand for IoT-based solutions is rapidly increasing, which is why we believe that the time is now right for Pessl to enter into a partnership with Inmarsat. By combining our respective expertise and capabilities, we can extend our reach and support our customers with bespoke IoT solutions wherever they are around the world.”

Simon Fisk, senior vice president of Inmarsat Enterprise, added: “IoT-based solutions have been around for a number of years and their utility in the agriculture sector is proven. The agriculture sector faces challenges with globally diverse locations and significant land mass coverage, which has limited the roll out of advanced IoT solutions.

Inmarsat is able to deliver a unique mix of LPWAN and satellite technologies anywhere on the planet that provides a complete solution to enable remote data collection, analytics and automation. Joining forces with Pessl will enable us to have a transformative impact on the farming sector.”

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ThingLogix Opens New Office in Dubai to Drive Internet of Things…

Regional presence and partnership with world’s leading cloud services provider signal growing business and consumer demand for smart, connected technologies

(PRWeb November 13, 2017)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/11/prweb14910252.htm

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A Week in IoT: Broadcom mulls $100bn bid for Qualcomm, as Ayla banks $60m Chinese backing

By Jeremy Cowan

Broadcom Ltd. is rumoured to be considering a bid of more than US$100 billion for Qualcomm Inc., according to a report by Bloomberg. As Jeremy Cowan writes, if it goes ahead this could be one of the biggest ever acquisitions of a chipmaker. In separate news, Ayla Networks, a provider of enterprise-grade IoT Platforms-as-a-Service (PaaS) has won $60 million in new funding.

With data storage and networking interests ranging from the automotive sector through industrial and medical to energy providers, Broadcom is understood to be talking to its advisers this weekend about a potential deal. If it goes ahead, an offer of approximately $70 a share may be made in the next few days. The scale of this deal would eclipse Softbank’s acquisition of ARM Holdings in July 2016. (See our report: Three IoT lessons from the Softbank acquisition of ARM.)

Writing exclusively in IoT Now in November 2016, Frost & Sullivan called this new wave of acquisitions in an article headlined, Will Qualcomm’s acquisition of NXP Semiconductors trigger a new wave of market consolidation?

Qualcomm shares had been depressed lately by an ongoing legal battle with Apple. Another problem for the company’s management has been its inability to close the planned $47 billion purchase of NXP Semiconductors NV. This follows a regulatory hold-up in Europe and shareholder opposition from hedge fund investor Elliott Management Corporation which says the offer undervalues NXP. (Also see our report: Qualcomm focuses on IoT as it agrees to buy chipset maker NXP Semiconductors for US$47bn.)

Qualcomm shares closed up 13% at $61.81, valuing the company at $91 billion. Broadcom stocks also rose 5.5%, giving the company a market capitalisation of almost $112 billion. (Also see: Qualcomm introduces new platform naming structure as ‘processor’ doesn’t capture its anthology of technology.)

IoT platform provider Ayla Networks wins $60m in Series D funding

Santa Clara, California-based Ayla Networks has raised $60 million in Series D financing led by China’s Run Liang Tai Fund (RLT) and Sunsea Telecommunications Co. Ltd. The funding will be used to further expand Ayla’s product capabilities to help large enterprises extract IoT data and transform it into business intelligence, and to expand its ecosystem network of partners and application providers.

David Friedman, Ayla Networks’ CEO and founder.

To date, Ayla’s focus has been in markets such as heating, ventilation & air-conditioning (HVAC), water management and home control. More recently, the company has expanded into serving large retail, industrial, telco and service provider, and medical markets. From these markets, the amount of data being fed into the platform is said by Ayla to be growing 500% year-on-year.

David Friedman, Ayla CEO and co-founder says, “The Ayla platform (offers) a massively configurable capability for our customers to ingest data from any sensor and IoT cloud. The platform makes it easier for enterprises to apply intelligence and analytics to broad sets of heterogeneous data sets to transform the data into real business value.”

Run Liang Tai says it is investing to enable Ayla to grow much faster. Ayla is partnering with Sunsea Telecommunications, a public company […]

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Edge analytics software FohHorn banks $30M Series B

FogHorn Systems, edge-intelligence software for commercial and industrial IoT applications raised a $30M Series B round this week at an unknown valuation. Intel Capital and returning investor Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures led the latest round.

The latest investment comes in a quick succession to the previous rounds whereby FogHorn raised $12M in July last year followed by a $3M Series A round in May this year. It brings the company’s total equity funding to $47.5M in four rounds from 13 investors, a rather ambitious figure given that FogHorn is still in early-revenue generation stage.

CEO David King and Foghorn’s management are tight-lipped about the company’s current revenues, though they boast having customers such as Saudi Aramco, GE, HP, and Dell.

One of the key factors contributing to HogForn’s rapid and early success is the enterprise need to have IoT analytics and local data processing capability. This is where FogHorn helps by applying analytics close to the source of data instead of moving it to the cloud. An ‘edge’ might be physical sensor/s, control systems, or a machine.

The startup that was founded in 2014 has been well-received by the press as well. It has received awards and accolades from industry research firms including Gartner, Frost & Sullivan, and 451 Research.

The company also launched its upgraded software that includes machine learning capabilities at the edge of the network via its patent-pending tiny-footprint, complex event processing (CEP) analytics engine.

“The reason this is important is that the vast majority of data streaming from IoT sensors is useless within a very short period of time. The information that is valuable — the anomalies and hard-to-detect patterns — need to be acted upon while operators can take corrective action.”
FogHorn CEO David King.

Currently, there are no major competitors that may pose a threat to FogHorn’s growth as most companies rely on sending the bulk of data to the cloud. For instance, Microsoft Azure Edge and Amazon Greengrass are also marketing their IoT edge processing solutions, though they still heavily rely on cloud storage.

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Edge analytics software FogHorn banks $30M Series B

FogHorn Systems, edge-intelligence software for commercial and industrial IoT applications raised a $30M Series B round this week at an unknown valuation.

Intel Capital and returning investor Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures led the latest round.

The latest investment comes in a quick succession to the previous rounds whereby FogHorn raised $12M in July last year followed by a $3M Series A round earlier this May. This brings the company’s total equity funding to $47.5M in four rounds from 13 investors.

CEO David King and Foghorn’s management are tight-lipped about the company’s current revenues, though they boast having customers such as Saudi Aramco, GE, HP, and Dell.

One of the key factors contributing to HogForn’s rapid and early success is the enterprise need to have IoT analytics and local data processing capability. This is where FogHorn helps by applying analytics close to the source of data instead of moving it to the cloud. An ‘edge’ might be physical sensor/s, control systems, or a machine.

The startup that was founded in 2014 has been well-received by the press as well. It has received awards and accolades from industry research firms including Gartner, Frost & Sullivan, and 451 Research.

The company also launched its upgraded software that includes machine learning capabilities at the edge of the network via its patent-pending tiny-footprint, complex event processing (CEP) analytics engine.

“The reason this is important is that the vast majority of data streaming from IoT sensors is useless within a very short period of time. The information that is valuable — the anomalies and hard-to-detect patterns — need to be acted upon while operators can take corrective action.”
FogHorn CEO David King.

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The Second Eastern European DNS Forum to Take Place in Belarus

The second Eastern European Domain Name System Forum (EEDNSF) will take place from 12-13 October 2017, in Minsk, Belarus. The event is organized by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) in partnership with the technical administrator of ccTLDs .BY and .БЕЛ, hoster.by company, also hosting the event. It follows on the success of the first edition held in Kiev last year, which attracted more than 200 participants from the region.

The event is part of ICANN’s regional outreach efforts to raise awareness on issues related to the Domain Name System (DNS), and collaborate with the stakeholders through discussions on areas of further development. The Forum will bring together interested parties and world experts in the field to share experiences, and inform participants about updates on the regional and global domain industry trends. It will cover topics such as DNS abuse and threats, ICANN regional strategy, legal issues in DNS industry, DNSSEC abd KSK rollover and regional views from registries and registrars. The first day of the event will cover technical presentations and the second day will be devoted to policy-related discussions.

The event provides participants with an opportunity to interact with each other and discuss various business, technical and policy aspects of the domain industry with experts from the field. Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) liaison to ICANN Board, Jonne Soininen is among the speakers to talk about name spaces as well as priorities in DNS industry. Dave Piscitello, ICANN VP of Security and ICT Coordinator, will also be at the event to discuss DNS security related topics.

Register here and visit the Eastern European DNS Forum website for more information. You can follow the event on social media with the hashtag #EEDNSF.

Remote participation and livestream of the event will be available to those interested in participating, but unable to attend.

Media Contacts:

Luna Madi
Communications Director, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 0313505
Email: luna.madi@icann.org

Buket Coskuner
Global Communications Coordinator, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 4876254
Email: buket.coskuner@icann.org

About ICANN:

ICANN’s mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address into your computer or other device – a name or a number. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation and a community with participants from all over the world.

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