BizTech Brief #27

Week Commencing 6th March 2017

It seems that tech news in 2017 is being dominated by security breaches, reports and news. However, this week it seems that the industry has been mixed up a little with news around both Security and the Cloud. This issue summarises the latest weeks tech news into one place. 

For more BizTech Brief articles, click here. 

AWS claims human error is to balme for US cloud storage outage

On Tuesday 28th February, cloud giant AWS expeirneced an outage on cloud storage services for several hours meaning thousands of users were unable to use the services. AWS have now released a statement claiming that this occurred due to human error. 

Amazon’s Simple Storage Service (S3), which provides backend support for websites, applications and other cloud services, ran into technical difficulties, returning error messages to those trying to use it.

The cloud service giant revealed the cause in a post-mortem-style blog post, and explained the issue can be traced back to some exploratory work its engineers were doing to establish why the S3 billing system was performing so slowly.

During this process, a number of servers – providing underlying support for two S3 subsystems – were accidently removed, requiring a full restart, which caused the problems.

Gartner says Worldwide public cloud services market to grow 18% in 2017

The worldwide public cloud services market is projected to grow 18 percent in 2017 to total $246.8 billion, up from $209.2 billion in 2016. The highest growth will come from cloud system infrastructure services (infrastructure as a service [IaaS]), which is projected to grow 36.8 percent in 2017 to reach $34.6 billion. Cloud application services (software as a service [SaaS]) is expected to grow 20.1 percent to reach $46.3 billion. 

The SaaS market is expected to see a slightly slower growth over the next few years with increasing maturity of SaaS offerings, namely human capital management (HCM) and customer relationship management (CRM) and the acceleration in the buying of financial applications. Nevertheless, SaaS will remain the second largest segment in the global cloud services market. Gartner predicts more cloud growth in the infrastructure compute service space as adoption becomes increasingly mainstream.

European data protection law to give consumers more control

The GDPR, which becomes enforceable by law in May 2018, will give people stronger rights to be informed about how their personal information is used, said UK information commissioner Elizabeth Denham.

The GDPR will bring “a more 21st century approach” to how personal data is processed and that organisations should seize the opportunity to set out a culture of data confidence in the UK, she told the ICO’s annual Data Protection Practitioners’ Conference in Manchester.

“The GDPR provides more protections for consumers and more privacy obligations for organisations. It aligns with people’s expectations for strong safeguards, and recognises the advance of digital services in the public and private sector,” she said.

Ministry of Defence Ditches spreadsheet for SaaS-Based collaboration tool

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) is managing some of its activities around the world through a cloud-based collaboration tool that was designed by a former Royal Navy IT expert. 

The software has replaced the use of spreadsheets to manage defence engagements, which had limitations. Data integrity was poor and there was limited version control due to a lack of simultaneous editing capabilities. There was also no visibility or control over changes made.

The MoD now has 600 people globally using the system, which includes all defence attachés across the world.

Most hackers can steal data within 24 hours, study shows

More than eight in 10 hackers can break through cyber security defences, access IT systems they target and steal data within 12 hours, even if the breach is not discovered for hundreds of days, a study has revealed.

By examining the security landscape from the hacker’s perspective, he said the Nuix Black Report has revealed results that are contrary to the conventional understanding of cyber security. 

For example:

  • Respondents said traditional countermeasures such as firewalls and antivirus almost never slowed them down, but endpoint security technologies were more effective at stopping attacks.
  • Around one-third of attackers said their target organisations never detected their activities.

“Organisations need to get much better at detecting and remediating breaches using a combination of people and technology,” said Chris Pogue, Cheif Information Security Officer at Nuix, especially if they are reduce the exposure from the time of breach to the time of detection.