Entries by Alan Zeichick

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New Mexico’s high degree of blockchain

Every new graduate from Central New Mexico Community College leaves school with a beautiful paper diploma covered in fine calligraphy, colorful seals, and official signatures. This summer, every new graduate also left with the same information authenticated and recorded in blockchain. What’s the point of recording diplomas using blockchain technology? Blockchain creates a list of immutable records—grouped in […]

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Exploring the autonomous features in the Oracle Autonomous Database

Oracle Database is the world’s most popular enterprise database. This year’s addition of autonomous operating capabilities to the cloud version of Oracle Database is one of the most important advances in the database’s history. What does it mean for a database to be “autonomous?” Let’s look under the covers of Oracle Autonomous Database to show just a […]

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Chatbots meet education at the University of Adelaide

In Australia, at 8 a.m. on ‘Results Day,’ thousands and thousands of South Australian year 12 students receive their ATAR (Australia Tertiary Admissions Rank)—the all-important standardized score used to gain admission to universities across Australia. The frustrating challenge: many are eligible to add as many as nine school and subject-specific bonus points to their ATAR, which can […]

The scammer has a modesty obligation

This seems legit… Not. What made it worth sharing was the opening, “It’s my modesty obligation…” It’s that obligation that will ensure the hitch free transfer of our fund, of course. That doesn’t explain why someone at the United Nations uses a Hong Kong email address for official business, though. Or why someone at a […]

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Knowledge requires context

Knowledge is power—and knowledge with the right context at the right moment is the most powerful of all. Emerging technologies will leverage the power of context to help people become more efficient, and one of the first to do so is a new generation of business-oriented digital assistants. Let’s start by distinguishing a business digital assistant […]

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Hackers want your data columns — not your data rows

At too many government agencies and companies, the security mindset, even though it’s never spoken, is that “We’re not a prime target, our data isn’t super-sensitive.” Wrong. The reality is that every piece of personal data adds to the picture that potential criminals or state-sponsored actors are painting of individuals. And that makes your data a […]

UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE (x2)

I received two spams on the same day, and with the exact same subject line. The messages, however, are quite different, and are quite laughably bad. Even so, don’t reply to such messages, even if it’s tempting to correct their grammar or spelling. The best thing to do is delete the messages. Both messages are […]

Let’s join the Illuminati

Were they real? Were they dangerous? I’ll leave those questions to historians. However, if you believe in the Illuminati, you’re probably not going to join that secret society by responding to spam. Read, enjoy, but don’t respond to messages like this. From: “The illuminati” email hidden; JavaScript is required Subject: Join the illuminati To: Recipients email […]

Do not destroy this scammer’s career, okay?

Such a tale of woe! None of it true, of course. Sorry, you’re not going to get a share of this £17,352,110 windfall from an abandoned bank account — because it doesn’t exist. Enjoy the email, if you receive it, and then delete without responding. From: “Dr Joseph” email hidden; JavaScript is required Subject: Inquiry […]

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Blockchain meets Mac ‘n Cheese

Blockchain and the cloud go together like organic macaroni and cheese. What’s the connection? Choosy shoppers would like to know that their organic food is tracked from farm to shelf, to make sure they’re getting what’s promised on the label. Blockchain provides an immutable ledger perfect for tracking cheese, for example, as it goes from […]

It’s a really long subject line, but still spam

This is either a mistake or an clever attempt to evade anti-spam filters. There is no message body. I am inclined to believe it’s the latter, guessing that filters will look at the body of the message, not the subject line. Either way, the U.S. Homeland Security department doesn’t use email addresses in Italy for official […]

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Look out! Space junk! Where’s Sandra Bullock???

If you saw the 2013 Sandra Bullock-George Clooney science-fiction movie Gravity, then you know about the silent but deadly damage that even a small object can do if it hits something like the Hubble telescope, a satellite, or even the International Space Station as it hurtles through space. If you didn’t see Gravity, a non-spoiler, one-word summary […]

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14 ways to optimize your application’s real-world performance

Users care passionately about their software being fast and responsive. You need to give your applications both 0-60 speed and the strongest long-term endurance. Here are 14 guidelines for choosing a deployment platform to optimize performance, whether your application runs in the data center or the cloud. Faster! Faster! Faster! That killer app won’t earn […]

Little spam boxes filled with cash

Little boxes, little boxes, all the same. If this spam has anything that makes it interesting, beyond the terrible grammar, it’s that the faux shipments are so detailed: 61x156x73m, with a capacity of 680 liters. Of course, this is spam – the extra details don’t change anything. Delete such messages, don’t respond to them. From: […]

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The public cloud is part of your network — but it’s not entirely

The public cloud is part of your network. But it’s also not part of your network. That can make security tricky, and sometimes become a nightmare. The cloud represents resources that your business rents. Computational resources, like CPU and memory; infrastructure resources, like Internet bandwidth and Internal networks; storage resources; and management platforms, like the […]

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Next-Generation Firewalls (NGFW) are essential for cloud computing

No more pizza boxes: Traditional hardware firewalls can’t adequately protect a modern corporate network and its users. Why? Because while there still may be physical servers inside an on-premises data center or in a wiring closet somewhere, an increasing number of essential resources are virtualized or off-site. And off-site includes servers in infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and platform-as-a-service […]

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Key takeaways from RSA Conference 2018

Nine takeaways from the RSA Conference 2018 can give business leaders some perspective on how to think about the latest threats and information security trends. I attended the conference in April, along with more than 42,000 corporate security executives and practitioners, tech vendors, consultants, researchers and law enforcement experts. In my many conversations, over way […]

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Five things you need to know about microservices

Microservices are a software architecture that have become quite popular in conjunction with cloud-native applications. Microservices allow companies to add or update new or existing tech-powered features more easily—and quite frequently even reduce the operating expenses of a product. A microservices approach does this by making it easier to update a large, complex program without […]