Blog posts by Mike Small



If you think that China only manufactures socks – read on to learn how Chinese software and European Cloud expertise plans to deliver ERP and CRM to mid-sized enterprises in EMEA. On November 8th, 2011 – the European IT services company ATOS and the Chinese software company UFIDA INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS, LTD. announced the formation of a Joint Venture, YUNANO™ which will address the growing Cloud market in Europe and China, targeting midsize organizations. UFIDA is a Chinese software company, registered in Shanghai, which was founded in 1988 and has a focus on software for Accounting,...


Is cloud computing worth the hassle?

Cloud computing provides organisations with an alternative way of obtaining information technology services and offers many benefits including increased flexibility as well as cost reduction. But man many organisations are reluctant to adopt the cloud because of concerns over information security and a loss of control over the way IT services are delivered. These fears have been exacerbated by recent events reported in the press including outages by Amazon and the three-day loss of Blackberry services from RIM. So what approach can be taken to ensure that the benefits of the cloud outweigh...


UK Government ID Assurance Program

The UK National Identity Card ceased to be a valid legal document on 21 January 2011. What does this mean for e-Government in the UK? In October 2010 Martha Lane Fox – the founder of and UK Government’s digital champion – delivered a report on delivering government services via the web. As a result of this report the Right Honourable Francis Maude, the minister responsible, launched a study “Ensuring Trust in Digital Services” through the Technology Strategy Board. On October 31st, 2011 I attended a series of presentations and demonstration describing the results of this...


What can News International teach us about information governance?

WHAT HAPPENED? On July 19th, Rupert Murdoch, proprietor of one of  the world’s largest news organizations News International, apologized for phone hacking by reporters at the News of the World, and is quoted as saying “this is the humblest day of my life” to a committee of MP’s in London. What does this teach us about information governance? On Sunday July 10th, 2011 the News of the World published it last edition. This paper had been publishing for 168 years and was the top selling Sunday newspaper in the UK. The closure came following revelations of how the newspaper had allegedly...


Classify Your Data [Not Protectively Marked]

Can users do a good job of classifying unstructured data? Tim Upton, president of Titus told the attendees at NISC in St Andrews Scotland that he believes they can. He cited figures that indicate most data breaches are due to mistakes rather than deliberate misuse or theft. It should be noted that Titus provides software that allows users to do just that when they create an e-mail, document, presentation or other similar kinds of files. When they create the object the software will prompt them to classify it according to a predefined set of categories. These categories can match a...


Symantec Bets on Virtual Workspaces and Mobility

Symantec recently announced their Endpoint Management Strategy and Release 7.1 of the Altiris product.  Managing the software patch level and software licenses on desktops, laptops, and mobile devices is a significant workload for organizations.  This work is essential to protect the devices, the information that they contain and to comply with licensing and other matters.  However it does not, in itself, add organizational value. This kind of management is technically very challenging and needs sophisticated tools to meet these challenges.  According to DHL’s Jan Trnka Global...


Switching Cloud Provider

In Brussels on March 22nd Neelie Kroes, Vice-President of the European Commission responsible for Digital Agenda European Cloud Computing Strategy, made a speech at the opening of the Microsoft Centre for Cloud Computing and Interoperability. In this she said “ offer a true utility in a truly competitive digital single market, users must be able to change their cloud provider easily. It must be as fast and easy as changing one’s internet or mobile phone provider has become in many places...” So what are the difficulties to achieving that goal and how far are we away from it now?...


Identity Management - Process or Technology

Identity Management – Process or Technology? RSA recently announced SEC 8-K filing a security breach, relating its SecureID authentication technology.   This reopens the question of which is the most important factor in identity management – processes or technology? One line of thinking has been that the major cause of identity theft and data loss is poor process and that strengthening the process is the key approach. Strong processes are indeed required but a strong process can be undermined by a weakness in  technology.   Authentication: The electronic...


EU Privacy Direction

Last week I had the privilege of attending a seminar at which Peter Hustinx, the EU Privacy Commissioner outlined the future approach on personal data protection in the European Union.   This approach includes “a right to be forgotten” as well as mandatory data breach reporting.   Given that the WikiLeaks website has recently released 2.5 million documents that were supposedly “private” reports by US embassies - you might ask “what does privacy mean?”  Well privacy in this context is more narrowly defined to be privacy of personal information. In the EU privacy is based on the...

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