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IBM Tackles "Bring Your Own" App Security

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IBM announces Cloud Security Enforcer-- a piece of security technology designed for enterprises wanting to safeguard against the trend of "bring your own" cloud-based apps at the workplace.

IBM Cloud security enforcerAccording to Big Blue, Cloud Security Enforcer is the first product combining cloud identity management (Identity-as-a-Service) with visibility of all 3rd party cloud apps accessed by employees. Hosted on the IBM Cloud, it first scans corporate networks to find the apps used by employees (via "deep threat analytics from IBM X-Force") before providing a more secure means of access.

To do so it adds "security-rich" connectors for a number of popular apps used on the workplace, including Box, Microsoft Office 365, Google Apps and, in order to bypass security breaches caused by human errors such as weak passwords.

Storage Challenge: The Degree of Content Value

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by Andy Marken

“Not everything ends the way you think it should. Besides, audiences love happy endings,”
says John Travolta as Gabriel Shear in Swordfish (an American crime film about a computer hacker).

Living in Silicon Valley it is very hard to remind myself that everyone doesn’t live on three – five devices constantly…24x7, 365 days of the year. It’s so cool!  It’s such a great distortion field I feel sorry for those who don’t eat, sleep, live it.

But it’s possible everyone is getting with it:

  • Pew Research reported that 84% of the adults in the U.S. are on the Internet and what the other 16% does, I have no idea.
  • Statista reports there are nearly 5B mobile phones in use globally (some have 2+) so they can text and occasionally even talk to each other.
  • We’re inching closer to having  everything/anything connected, which is why we ran out of IP(Internet Protocol) Version 4 addresses and moved up to IPv6  so the 50B things can chat.

No wonder attendees at Flash Memory Summit (FMS) 2015 were positively giddy.

Microprocessor speeds double every two years and device prices get lower, so we can create more things, stuff faster/better to be stored.

This year, we’ll pack away more than 3.5ZB (Zetabytes) of data. By 2020, they’ll be hunting for places to put 44ZB.

Yes, 44 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 bytes!

Stirage Space
More than Ever –
We’ve created more content in the past two years than in the previous 5000 and the volume of data, pictures, movies and things continues to grow at an accelerated rate.  No wonder you’re constantly buying storage devices.

Top 30 European Cloud Solution Providers

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by Leahanne Hobson, Founder, Alinea Partners Consulting

We recently completed some research on the Top 30 Cloud Solution Providers (CSPs) in Europe and here are some things I found interesting:


Who is the target customer? Or the expected Buyer? Many of the Cloud offers are perfect for small and medium businesses, but the language used is highly technical versus business oriented. It appears that many CSPs are using the language they use with their technology partners vs. the language of small and medium business owners or their teams. Many of these buyers – especially in the micro segments – do not even have a CIO. We in the high tech and telco worlds have been guilty for ages of talking to ourselves and using our own private vocabularies more than we communicate with potential buyers. It seems this is still happening.

 More Confusion
  There seems to be general confusion over products, a services and solutions.

  • Products - physical entities that are manufactured from raw materials
  • Services - non-physical entities that are often a result of the application of know-how, skills and technology
  • Solution - a product, service, and often both that is delivered as a compound entity

There are many different definitions and the words are used loosely – sometimes just listing them all across the website and dropping down to 10s of different menu items. And amazingly, some CSPs are still selling ‘Products’. Actually, when we looked, they were online services, but that just added to the overall mess. 

There is more, but to keep this just to a summary…

The more confused a buyer is, the smaller the chance he or she will buy. Considering that buyers are anywhere from 66% to 90% of the way through their purchase journey using your website before they reach out to you (according to Forrester). And, 55% of visitors spend fewer than 15 seconds on your website (according to Chartbeat), there are about 12 seconds to capture their attention.

Quite Clear - It takes less than 15 seconds to say ‘I’m confused...’ and leave.

Few Are Nailing Their Services Strategies

About 10% of the CSPs had services that focused on business outcomes. It shows they have really thought through ‘What is the value we can bring to our customers that will improve their businesses’ and ‘How can we get more invested into our customers’ businesses and build trust overtime.’

The majority of CSPs have a bit of a hodgepodge of services that are usually focused on values that sound like ‘brochureware.’ In an earlier post I discussed that today’s websites need to be selling vehicles (part of your salesforce) versus communications tools that host a lot of documents.

Of the CSPs that are getting it right, we are seeing a mid to long-term Services Roadmap that reflects a Cloud Managed to Adoption Services Model and could include …

  • Adoption Planning Services
  • Solution Design
  • Build, Develop & Deploy
  • Connectivity & Consumption Monitoring
  • Consumption Optimisation
  • Process Consulting & Optimisation
  • Staffing Services

We’ve seen and collected a report on various services and deliverables under these service categories, but this is the direction CSPs are (or should be) moving.

Industry focus is about 50/50% with some focusing on industries while others appear to be appealing to individual buyers. Of those deploying this strategy, here are the industry offers covered (alphabetically):

  • Construction
  • Energy
  • Entertainment
  • Financial Services
  • Healthcare
  • High Technology
  • Insurance
  • K-12 Education
  • Legal
  • Manufacturing
  • Nonprofit/Associations
  • Restaurants
  • Small and Medium Businesses
  • Start-ups
  • Transportation

Go Alinea Partners Consulting


About Leahanne  Hobson... With +15 years’ management and field experience in the high technology and telecommunications markets, she has directed go-to-market strategies and new business development programs for global companies of all sizes. She has held European management positions for Avaya, IBM and Lucent Technologies.

Leahanne HobsonIn 2005, Leahanne founded Alinea Partners Consulting, a European new business development network (sales, channel and marketing) for telecommunications and high technology companies. She works with a variety of companies in the telecommunications, high technology and financial markets on new customer acquisition, growth strategies and customer experience management she has also supported many companies recently as they change business models and plans to make them more competitive and profitable in the cloud computing market.

Clients include: Atieh International, Arrow, Alcatel-Lucent, Arrow Europe, Avnet Embedded, BASE (a KPN subsidiary), CCT Solutions, Capsuling, Cisco, Convergys Corporation, Dell, Fujitsu Technology Solutions, IBM, Intel, Lions Club Austria, Microsoft, NEC, Prediki, PilotLite Ventures, SaaSPlaza, Sun Microsystems, Tangoe, Telekom Slovenije/Aventa/SiOL, Trout Loud, UPC, miscellaneous financial investment firms, etc.

Interested in receiving the full report, support in developing your own Services Roadmap or a full analysis with recommendations for turning your website into a sales vehicle?

Order at office (at)

What You Need to Know About 3D Printing

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HP is in. Microsoft and Intel, too. Ingram Micro, Tech Data, ABC Data and other distributors have opened Business Units or appointed product managers. Best Buy, WalMart, Media Markt, Staples, Synaxon and even Cool Blue are selling it at retail. Not to mention companies like Verbatim selling "filament" to print in 3D like they did for the PC with diskettes and CDs.

HP Sprout3D printing is IT's Next Big Thing. There are 3D scanners that attach to an iPad... applications that link to HP Sprout, Oculus Rift and Augmented Reality...service bureaus and even clouds where you find 3D printing-as-a service. And a number of e-commerce platforms that sell or give away content, fighting to be the iTunes of 3D printing.

While the song may be different, many in IT will recognize the tune and dance to the beat.

How do you find out more about 3D printing as it relates to your business? Fortunately, there is a new pan-European conference that focuses on the business of 3D printing: 3DP EUROPE in Brussels, Oct. 18-19th.

For the price of a business dinner for four in Brussels, you can learn all about the technology. the products, the market stats and even the challenges and opportunities of the distribution partners.

Listen to Ingram Micro on how to get into 3D printing reselling, iGo3D Germany on retailing, 3D Hubs on platforms, and Canalys on the market's vital statistics.


Deloittes will talk about how enterprises can add 3D printing...the exciting multidisciplinary production company INITION will explain how it uses 3D printing to create installation-based experiences that harness emerging technologies... meet the world's first specialized 3D-technology marketing agency.

Learn how to win EU funding... meet venture capitalists... and discover how Microsoft has started an industry consortium to standardize 3D printing software files.

Keynotes include channel industry expert Bob Snyder and the 2015 Bower Award scientist Jean-Pierre Kruth.

And most importantly, shake hands with Europe's top executives in 3D printing...get access to all the expertise, products, and know-how you need to succeed in this new product category.

Register at 3DP EUROPE

Accenture Buys Cloud Sherpas

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Global consulting company Accenture acquires Cloud Sherpas, a specialist in helping enterprises incorporate cloud services such as, Google and ServiceNow, for an undisclosed sum.

AccentureAccenture already has a Cloud First Applications team delivering "pure play" cloud services for Google NetSuite, Salesforce, ServiceNow and Workday-- and the Cloud Sherpas buy will swell its ranks with over 1100 professionals.

Founded in 2007, Cloud Sherpas is the largest Google consulting partner, one of just four ServiceNow Master Partners and a Salesforce Global Strategic Consulting Partner.

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