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Oct 262016
 
IoT-based DDOS Attacks

Last week’s DDoS attack against Dyn Inc. had an impact on many organizations beyond the reported hits to PayPal, Twitter, Amazon, Spotify, and others. Even Cutter’s website search function was out of commission for a short while! Experts have warned that at some point, smart versions of devices such as refrigerators, televisions and thermostats could be manipulated to alter their basic functions, but did anyone foresee that these devices would be used to launch a third-party attack? This isn’t the first time it’s happened, and it’s not likely to be the last. In the July 2016 Cutter article Securing the IoT: It Takes the Global Village, author David Tayouri discusses the threats Internet of Things Read more

Jan 262016
 
Thank You, Ed, for All You Gave Us

As many of you will know by the time you read this, Ed Yourdon died last week. He was a pioneer in software engineering, author of 26 computer books and hundreds of computer articles, a prominent consultant and lecturer, and, here at Cutter, founder and longtime Editor of what is now known as Cutter IT Journal. Ed also cofounded the Consortium part of Cutter, authored many Cutter technology journals, and wrote thousands of Cutter email advisors. Most importantly, Ed was a great friend to all of us. His influence on Cutter’s mission and values endures. My first encounter with Ed was at a CASE conference. He had just delivered a brilliant keynote that, true to form, Read more

Jan 122016
 

[All posts in this series: 1, 2, 3, 4] As I read through Tom Grant’s article on Agile Frameworks, one word kept jumping out at me: structure! People like frameworks because they provide a structure that is repeatable. As I think back to all the Agile deployments I have dealt with, there were many misconceptions about Agile but the one that was consistent was that Agile did not have structure. Many managers who asked for Agile to be implemented had the idea that being Agile meant that you didn’t have to do many of the things that they were doing with the other software development process they were using. Managers focused on the literal meaning Read more

Dec 172014
 
It’s 2015 – Do You Know Where Your Data Is?

The “Internet of Things” will take further hold and become more fully embedded as a reality in our society. However, a tipping point is likely to be reached in 2015 as public awareness of the potential for these technologies to violate personal privacy increases. This will lead to an associated public outcry for stricter controls and government legislation regarding how people, organizations and government collect and use this information. The public will no longer be satisfied to leave technology companies and users to self-police their uses of their personal data. Surveillance and other technologies that permit the collection of data about people will continue to proliferate. Analytical tools are emerging to interpret this information, and Read more

What really is an MVP?

 Posted by on Nov 24, 2014  2 Responses »
Nov 242014
 
What really is an MVP?

In his highly influential book, The Lean Startup, Eric Ries introduced term “minimal viable product” (MVP). As Ries rightly points out, firms putting out new products typically spend too much time and money on features that miss the mark somehow in meeting customer needs or are simply unnecessary. The result is a delayed over-expensive product that is more likely than not an economic failure. Reese proposes a better alternative: put out the least function (minimal) product that you can that might meet customer needs or at least will draw customer attention (viable). This way the team can test the market with different feature sets, get customer feedback, and commit development resources to the expensive activity Read more

Apr 242014
 
Process and Information Integration – a Matter of Life and Death?

I don’t want to act as the proverbial ambulance-chasing lawyer, but certain accidents lead me to shake my head about the ways in which we prevent effective action in matters of safety. I am specifically referring to the lack of end-to-end information and process integration we see in certain industries and activities. The tragedy of the South Korean ferry, the Sewol, which capsized last week, killing many people, brings this point home again. But this is not the only situation that comes to mind. Sunday marked the fourth anniversary of the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Macondo prospect in the Gulf of Mexico. While there were many reasons for that tragedy, in Read more

Dec 302013
 
All Gov't Levels to Search for Cost-Effective Operational Stability

This coming year, government leaders will be looking for the most cost-effective means of operational stability for their level of government. Public sector executive leaders will take specific steps to assess their organization (both operations and information technology) to determine the most cost-effective means for business operations. For the IT organizations, this means taking a detailed look at the utilization of operational disciplines, governance and business alignment methods. In addition, decisions will have to be made regarding human capital replacement, training and/or selectively sourcing required technology operations and functions. At the same time, executive leaders will be faced with making decisions on modernization of systems and productivity applications. Progressive executive leaders will utilize an unbiased and Read more

Dec 192013
 
Will the Laggards Speed Up, Please?

The Oil and Gas (O&G) industry, especially its so-called “upstream” segment, exploration and production (or going from the rock to the pipeline), is totally based on data. A seismic survey may collect petabytes of acoustic signals. Increasingly, when wells are drilled, sensors are inserted in them, and these sensors collect data for the next 30 years of production. Two completely different applications, but in both cases they result in masses of data. O&G’s dependency on data began decades ago when the Schlumberger brothers invented the “electric log” in 1926. And yet, this sector has been one of the most conservative, even lagging, adopters of modern modeling and management techniques for both information and processes. Over Read more

Dec 182013
 
Analytics "Late-Comers" will Gain New Prominence

We’ve come to expect breakthroughs from retail, social and financial institutions as they apply leading-edge analytics to deliver impressive business insights. Heavy industries such as utilities, energy exploration and transportation have lagged these analytics power-users in three key dimensions: enterprise culture, technology foundation and business results. I believe 2014 will be the year when these analytics “late-comers” will gain new prominence. Here are six predications on what to expect: Enterprise Culture: new beliefs and norms are necessary to embrace analytics within most enterprises 1.  Analytics will be formalized as a leadership competency. Most large organizations have a set of leadership competencies that reflect their vision and strategy. In 2014, being able to drive decision making with Read more

Dec 172013
 
IoT, Big Data, Mobile Apps, Drones to Impact Privacy & Security

Here are my predictions for 2014: 2014 will bring exponential expansion and evolution of the Internet of Things (IoT). This will also bring new opportunities for information security trailblazers unlike any we’ve seen before. The potential benefits of the IoT will be huge, but just as large will be the new and constantly evolving information security and privacy risks. We will see some significant privacy breaches resulting from the use of IoT devices as a result. New IoT risks, and resulting security incidents and privacy breaches, will bring a significant need for technology information security pros to also understand privacy concepts so they can implement privacy protections within all these new devices, and into the Read more