Security Analytics For Analyzing Data And Preventing Threats

To secure the network infrastructure as well as the devices connected to the network, security analytics is needed. The security analytics industry is gaining at a significant pace due to the growing threats and cyber vulnerabilities. In addition, mitigation, detection, as well as the analysis of targeted cyber attacks and persistent threats is carried out with the help of security analytics. Energy & utilities, government, IT & telecom, and defense are some of the major end-users of security analytics.

analytics

In addition, endpoint security analytics is expected to play a significant role in changing the scenario of the overall market and is likely to observe substantial growth into coming future. Likewise, information and data application are anticipated to dominate the security analytics market across the globe. Security analytics is implemented the data as well as process it for safety and security management. In addition, security analytics allows the industries and enterprises to keep a track of an entire data stored in the databases.

Related:- Preventing information security breaches in healthcare

Moreover, security analytics process is developed through the industrial internet of things (IIoT) and big data analytics to maintain a pace with the rising technological advancements across the world. The growing implementation of managed security solutions and services by the integration as well as organizations of security intelligence with big data analytics are some of the major factors increasing the growth of the global security analytics market. In addition to this, increase in sophistication level of security breaches and threats, increasing security requirements, raised deployment of cloud-based and web-based business applications and developing better and new security product and severe compliance and regulations requirements are also some of the key forces boosting the development of the global security analytics market.

In addition to this, the integration of big data analytics with the security intelligence and growing managed security services are offering potential growth opportunities in the security analytics market across the globe. Likewise, government and defense are the top end-users of security analytics. Some of other factors such as finding the precise security tool fulfilling the organization’s security requirements, less knowledge about the security threats as well as methods to avoid them can be a major barrier to the progress of the security analytics market.

Related:- What is Session Hijacking and How Do You Prevent It?

Moreover, growing focus to maintain regularity compliance and the growing demand to explore threat patterns, the prevention of interruption, and prioritization of network-enabled threats with advanced intelligence to avoid data losses also helps to contribute to the growth of the security analytics market across the globe. According to the regional background, North American market for security analytics is expected to dominate for the highest share into coming years; this is due to the existence of the huge number of security providers across the region. This is followed by the huge development in the Asia Pacific countries particularly in developing regions such as India and China due to the rapidly growing technology, growing awareness regarding the potential security threats, as well as increasing digitalization of businesses.

What is Session Hijacking and How Do You Prevent It?

Session hijacking is as the term suggests. A user in a session can be hijacked by an attacker and lose control of the session altogether, where their personal data can easily be stolen. After a user starts a session such as logging into a banking website, an attacker can hijack it.Hijacking

In order to hijack a session, the attacker needs to have substantial knowledge of the user’s cookie session. Although any session can be hacked, it is more common in browser sessions on web applications.

How is a session hijacked?

Attackers have a number of options to hijack a user’s session, depending on the attacker’s position and vector. Here are some of the ways a session can be hijacked:

  • Cross-site scripting (XSS): Attackers exploit vulnerabilities within servers or applications to inject client-side Java scripts into the users’ web pages, causing your browser to execute arbitrary code when it loads a compromised page. If the server doesn’t set the HTTP Only in session cookies, injected scripts can gain access to your session key, providing attackers with the necessary information for session hijacking.
  • Session side jacking: By using packet sniffing, an attacker can monitor the traffic within the network and intercept the user’s session cookies after they have authenticated it. If the website takes the cheap route of using SSL/TLS encryption for its login pages only, the attacker can use the session key they have derived from packet sniffing to hijack the user’s session and impersonate them to perform actions in the web application. This can usually happen in case of an unsecured WiFi Hotspot in order to gain access to the network, monitor the traffic and set up their own access points to perform the attack.
  • Session fixation: Attackers supply a session key and spoof the user into accessing a vulnerable server.

The threat of session hijacking exists due to stateless protocol. These protocols have limitations, which is why they are vulnerable to attacks.

Related:- Preventing information security breaches in healthcare

Role of Encryption

In order to protect a user’s session from getting hijacked, organizations can incorporate certain encryptions. These encryptions are necessary to protect your consumers’ sessions and are in the form of certificates.

  • SSL: SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and, in short, it’s the standard technology for keeping an internet connection secure and safeguarding any sensitive data that is being sent between two systems, preventing criminals from reading and modifying any information transferred, including potential personal details.
  • TLS: TLS (Transport Layer Security) is just an updated, more secure, version of SSL.

Example of Session Hijacking

A session attack takes advantage of data leaks in the compression ratio of TLS requests. This then gives them access to users’ login cookies which can be used to hijack the users session. One such incident occurred in September, 2012, when an organization of session hijackers called CRIME breached an organization’s website.

CRIME ended up hijacking the session by decrypting HTTPS cookies set by the website and authenticated themselves as users by brute force, siphoning a considerable amount of data.

Related:- Chinese Cell Phones Ship Preloaded with Malware

How to Prevent Session Hijacking

In order to protect yourself from being hijacked while in a session, you need to strengthen the mechanisms in web applications. This can be done through communication and session management. Here are a few ways you can reduce the risk of session hijacking:

  • HTTPS: The use of HTTPS ensures that there is SSL/TLS encryption throughout the session traffic. Attackers will be unable to intercept the plaintext session ID, even if the victim’s traffic was monitored. It is advised to use HSTS (HTTP Strict Transport Security) to guarantee complete encryption.
  • HTTPOnly: Setting up an HTTPOnly attribute prevents access to the stored cookies from the client-side scripts. This can prevent attackers from deploying XSS attacks that rely on injecting Java Scripts in the browser.
  • System Updates: Install reputable antivirus software which can easily detect viruses and protect you from any type of malware (including the malware attackers use to perform session hijacking). Keep your systems up to date by setting up automatic updates on all your devices.
  • Session Management: In order to offer sufficient security, website operators can incorporate web frameworks, instead of inventing their own session management systems.
  • Session Key: It is advised to regenerate session keys after their initial authentication. This renders the session ID extracted by attackers useless as the ID changes immediately after authentication.
  • Identity Verification: Perform additional identity verification from the user beyond the session key. This includes checking the user’s usual IP address or application usage patterns.
  • Public Hotspot: Avoid using public WiFi to protect the integrity of your sessions and opt for secure wireless networks.
  • VPN: Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to stay safe from session hijackers. A VPN masks your IP and keeps your session protected by creating a “private tunnel” through which all your online activities will be encrypted.
  • Phishing Scam: Avoiding falling for phishing attacks. Only click on links in an email that you have verified to have been sent from a legitimate sender.

Conclusion

Session hijacking is a real threat and users are at a constant threat of being compromised. There are several ways that a website manager can mitigate these risks by implementing security protocols. These security protocols mainly involve deep encryption within entire web applications to close out all entry points for attackers to hijack the user’s session.

With data vastly increasing online and more and more people using the web on a daily basis, it is paramount for organizations to make their websites secure. Failure to do so could result in heavy fines under global data privacy regulations.

Preventing information security breaches in healthcare

Growth in IT infrastructure has afforded unprecedented ease of operations for healthcare organizations by connecting increasing number network devices. Now physicians, patients and clinicians stay in constant contact to provide services round the clock. However, the convenience is continuing to successfully mask the risks. Rather, it has made organizations ignore the vulnerability of the cyberspace where the defense between attackers and targets is fragile.

Ponemon Institute Fifth Annual Study on Privacy and Security of Healthcare Data documents a 125 percent surge in criminal attacks in the healthcare industry since 2010. Based on responses gathered from 90 CEs (covered entities) and 88 BAs (business associates), the report puts criminal attacks as the primary cause of data theft. “While employee negligence and lost/stolen devices continue to be primary causes of data breaches, criminal attacks are now the number-one cause,” according to the Institute’s chairman and founder, Dr. Larry Ponemon.healthcare

The research estimates data breach losses at a whopping $6 billion and calculates healthcare firms’ average data breach cost at more than $2.1 million, while the average cost of a data breach to BAs is estimated at more than $1 million. Forbes’ estimates stolen health records arising out of security incidents at Community Health Systems (CHS), Anthem and Premera at “about 95.5 million,” which comprises “almost 30% of the entire U.S. population ‒ in less than one year.”

Related:- Chinese Cell Phones Ship Preloaded with Malware

No company is immune, but each must build defense

The Ponemon study finds, “No healthcare organization, regardless of size, is immune from data breach.” True, size hardly matters for attackers as it is the cost of individual credentials that create demand, which make overcoming information security challenges in SMEs equally critical as challenges abound in small enterprises too. Health insurance information, for example, reportedly sells at $20 each while additional ailment information fetches another $20.

Also, ID Experts, the sponsors of the above-cited Ponemon study, CIPP/US president and co-founder Rick Kam is of opinion, “A breach is a breach, no matter how small. Whether 5,000,000, 5,000, or 50 individuals are affected, the impact to each and every person is a big deal.” For organizations, the margin of error allowed is getting increasingly thin and it is a battle where you only defend while adversaries need a very narrow window – already provided by the very nature of the fragile cyberspace.

On the other hand, it is worth noting that while no organization is immune from attack, each of them must develop robust defense which involves diligent and dutiful implementation of information security risk management. Further, the resilient defense must cover two factors: Technical and cultural. While technical resilience, in today’s scenario, includes data protection in the cloud and efficiently managing the connected network devices, cultural robustness must knit all forces together.

Technically tough

Technical robustness supported by efficient implementation of defense speaks louder than resolutions chalked out in a post-breach meeting. The influx of multitude of devices makes it ideal for intrusion as infecting any single device in the network allows access to the entire framework. Constant check on infrastructure security status with particular emphasis on individual equipment safety is crucial for healthcare organizations.

The Ponemon study observes that despite the increasing cost of data breach “half of all organizations have little or no confidence in their ability to detect all patient data loss or theft.” The lack of confidence could be attributed to multiple reasons including the very size of the organization involved. However, collaboration with a trusted partner goes a long way in enabling companies to boost their overall IT infrastructure. Risk management software that is constantly upgraded to meet the latest information security demands improves functionality while maintaining the integrity of the system.

Related:- 9 Important Steps for Cloud Migration

Culturally robust

Efforts to resilient IT infrastructure building are contingent upon the fact that healthcare organizations cultivate a risk aware culture. It is achieved by constant communication about appropriate risk behavior and by making employees voluntarily participate in the risk culture of the organization. Imperative to employee participation in organizational risk culture are the policies that create an invisible framework for operational excellence for security message to spread through the ranks – beginning and initiating with chief security officer.

Also, employees entrusted with critical tasks must be put through adequate training on information security. It is often observed that employers emphasize on expertise in the healthcare domain, but not as much on technical skills. While it is imperative to hire manpower with information security management skills, healthcare professionals must also be enlightened with periodic training to ensure they are prepared to take on evolving challenges targeting infrastructure.

Chinese Cell Phones Ship Preloaded with Malware

Software embedded in phones manufactured in China have once again been found to contain preloaded malware. In BuzzFeed news and Secure-D reporting from late August, the Chinese made smartphones were outed for stealing data and money from users across the African continent. Follow-on reporting revealed the phones were being sold in the Australian market as well.

phones

As it turns out, several Tecno brand phones from the mobile manufacturer Transsion were discovered preloaded with xHelper and Triada malware. The malware is used to download unwanted applications and subscribe to paid services automatically, draining the pockets of the victims who may be some of the poorest in the world. Furthermore, victims routinely complain about all the pop-ups that affect their usability.

Because the malware is preloaded, a factory reset on the device does not resolve the issue and permissions to make changes have been hidden. Secure-D operates a service for mobile carriers to protect their networks and customers from fraud; the company reported blocking +840K transactions from the preinstalled malware on Transsion phones from March to December 2019.

Related:- What is an LMS? – Learning Management System Guide

In response to the article, a Transsion spokesperson cast blame on an unidentified vendor along the supply chain. Transsion is the fourth-largest mobile phone manufacturer in the world and is the lone company among the top four to market exclusively to low-income markets.

The tactic is not new. Previous reporting in January 2019 by Secure-D uncovered preinstalled malware built by TCL Communication (another Chinese handset maker) on Alcatel phones sold in Brazil, Malaysia, and Nigeria. In mid-2018, Chinese-associated technology built into low-cost
smartphones in Brazil and Myanmar plagued victims with phony purchases.

Research by Malwarebytes Labs reported in January and July 2020 showed pre-installed malware was loaded on mobile devices used in the US Lifeline Assistance Program via Assurance Wireless by Virgin Mobile. In their January article, the analysts focused on UMX (Unimax Communications) branded phones under the program that arrived with two malicious applications. The malware loaded on the phones was of Chinese origin and the UMX mobile device was manufactured by a Chinese company as well.

Following the trail still, the researchers found an ANS (American Network Solutions) branded phone running different, but related malicious applications in July 2020. The ANS application responsible for the trouble was signed with a digital certificate associated with the Chinese based company TeleEpoch Ltd, which manages the registered brand UMX in the US.

Related:- 9 Important Steps for Cloud Migration

The low price-tag on these phones contribute to their popularity, but that comes with a cost. Michael Kwet, visiting fellow of the Information Security Project at Yale Law, believes taking advantage of the poor through outright theft of data and money could be labeled “digital colonialism.”

In addition to cell phones, there are a wide variety of software/hardware solution alternatives produced and intended for use in enterprise environments. Security practitioners must consider supply-chain attack factors as they assess risks to their organizations and seek to draw out the true price of opting for those less-expensive alternatives.

9 Important Steps for Cloud Migration

This cloud migration or cloud computing effectuates the move from on-premise or legacy infrastructure to the cloud. This legacy infrastructure includes servers, networking equipment, apps, databases, and other software or hardware infrastructure which can be moved to the cloud through the process of cloud migration.Migration

There are many benefits businesses get with cloud migrations such as agility, flexibility, cost-effectiveness, improved CX, etc. With many leading cloud service providers, businesses can get services on-demand and can pay only for the resources they use. Thus, more and more businesses are moving towards the cloud. There are interesting facts and some statistics stated by leading research analysts on cloud migration.

Related:- What is an LMS? – Learning Management System Guide

An overview of cloud migration statistics by leading research analysts

● Forrester predicts that the global public cloud infrastructure market will grow 35% to $120 billion in 2021. Alibaba cloud will take the Third revenue spot globally, after Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure.

● According to Forbes, 32% of IT budgets will be dedicated to the cloud by 2021.

● A recent survey conducted by Flexera on 750 enterprises and small-to-medium businesses (SMBs), in the first quarter of 2020 revealed that the vast majority of respondents (93 percent) have already employed a multi-cloud strategy.

● According to Enterprise Cloud Solutions, half of the U.S State and Federal governments heavily use the cloud. On a similar note, another FedRAMP Survey Results Report states that the governments in the United States, especially in bigger cities, are increasing their cloud adoption especially following the initial COVID-19 outbreak.

● As per the news published by The Hindu, Tech giant Microsoft has witnessed an over 775% increase in demand for cloud services post-pandemic. The COVID-19 outbreak across the world led companies to shift from on-premise IT infrastructures to the cloud

All these above data signifies how important it is for businesses to look upon cloud migrations. It is also predicted that multi-cloud will dominate post-pandemic and COVID-19 has been a major driving force for the accelerated demand of hybrid and multi-cloud models for businesses. Moreover, with the huge number of benefits of the cloud, businesses are moving towards cloud adoptions rapidly.

Major Benefits of Cloud Migration for Businesses

1. Improves scalability

Cloud computing helps in scaling up the business by supporting large workloads. Unlike on-premise infrastructure, it does not require any physical setup of assets like servers, networking equipment, software licenses, etc.

2. Delivers greater agility

Cloud delivers greater agility with IT resources and helps businesses to scale during surges or seasonal sales with loads of users accessing the resources.

3. Ensures more flexibility

Cloud computing enables businesses to add or take away resources as and when needed. Businesses can quickly expand or decrease computer processing, memory, storage, etc. to meet the ever-changing needs of their customers and business needs. Also, employees and customers can access cloud services from anywhere and anytime.

4. Reduces cost

In cloud computing, businesses can pay only for the resources used. Also in cloud computing, everything is handled by the cloud provider such as upgrades, maintenance, etc., and thus reduces overall costs to businesses.

5. Improves operational performance

Cloud computing helps businesses to increase performance and delivers improved user experience. With the help of apps and websites hosted on the cloud, data is readily available to customers which reduces latency and improves performance.

6. Reduces CAPEX

Cloud computing helps businesses to shift from Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) by shifting from an operating expenses model to a pay-as-you-go model which is beneficial for businesses.

7. Enhances security and compliance

Cloud providers keep in check of all security and compliance policies to ensure that sensitive data is safe on the cloud. Cloud providers take care of all policies and thus businesses need not worry about data leaks or loss while adopting cloud migration. They also ensure automatic security updates to their systems protect them from vulnerabilities.

8. Brings in less maintenance

Unlike traditional IT systems that need employees to spend the entire day on tedious maintenance of costly equipment, the public cloud does not need much human support for maintenance. This frees up employees to focus on more important tasks which ultimately helps in driving greater outcomes for businesses.

9. Facilitates built-in status monitoring

Many of the cloud providers ensure and provide monitoring of apps or machines and immediately notify businesses of any outage or downtime. More importantly, cloud service providers subsequently perform disaster recovery with automatic backup and logging of the key metrics to provide information on what caused the issue.

Related:- Increased threat of cyber crime during coronavirus outbreak

9 Important steps for Cloud Migration

1. Perform an organizational assessment :

It is necessary to first assess the organizational need and business objectives that are to be achieved through cloud adoption.

2. Assess current infrastructure readiness and requirements:

Assess the current state of your business infrastructure. Determine whether your business is ready to be moved to the cloud. Shifting to cloud solutions might require reconfiguring the entire business to fit as per the technology. Therefore, first assess the current requirements and readiness of your business infrastructure to safely move to the cloud.

3. Choose between cloud deployment models:

Select the right platform wherein you need to decide whether you want to migrate your IT infrastructure to the private cloud, public cloud, hybrid cloud, or multi-cloud. Public cloud is scalable, cost-effective due to pay per usage model. Private cloud is good for businesses that require the highest level of data security. Hybrid cloud allows the movement of workloads between private and public clouds through orchestration. Multi-cloud allows businesses to reap the benefits of each cloud platform. Hence, based on the benefit with each of these, you can decide between single cloud, multi-cloud, etc.

4. Determine the service model of cloud computing:

There are three main service models of cloud computing – Infrastructure as Services (IaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), and Platform as a Services (PaaS). All these three service models have varied features for storage and resource pooling, and thus, as a business, you have to decide which one you should adopt based on the business need.

5. Define cloud KPIs:

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are the metrics that help to measure the performance of your application and services against your expectations. Some of these cloud migration KPIs are; User experience –page load time, response time; infrastructure – CPU usage %, disk performance, memory; Application performance – error rates, throughput, Availability, etc. As a business, you should have the KPIs made available and analyze them for your cloud migration.

6. Define the cloud roadmap:

Before heading towards the cloud migration and actual execution process, it is essential to first prepare a detailed cloud migration roadmap. The roadmap should outline the data migration process step-by-step and how long it is expected to complete the cloud migration process.

7. Choose the right apps to move to the cloud:

Decide whether you want to migrate all apps at once or to opt for service-by-service. Not all apps are cloud-friendly, while some apps work well on the private cloud, and some apps work well on the public cloud. Therefore, you need to carefully choose the right apps that should be moved to the cloud.

8. Migrate your data:

Now comes the most important step i.e. migration of apps and data. It is easier to migrate slowly and in small manageable steps. This sort of effective migration helps you to understand what is working and what needs to be changed during the cloud migration process.

9. Test thoroughly and then move to production:

Once your cloud environment is all set, data is populated, and when apps are moved to the cloud, it is time to conduct an end-to-end cloud testing of apps and data. The more complicated your architecture is, the more caution is required and more thorough end-to-end cloud testing is needed to ensure successful cloud migration.

How can TestingXperts help with Cloud Migration?

Cloud-based platforms have helped enterprises to reduce time-to-market and eliminate upfront costs. Due to this cloud-based solutions are in high demand. But some issues related to data security, privacy, integration, and application performance pose a great challenge to successful application migration to the cloud. Businesses require cloud-based testing to ensure successful cloud implementation and to realize the complete benefits from cloud solutions.

Its helps you define an effective strategy to test the cloud so that you can address all the challenges and pitfalls. Software testing in the cloud usually focuses on functional testing of the application, and it also needs a strong emphasis on non-functional and cloud-specific testing. Tx adopts this end-to-end approach to ensure high quality across all aspects of cloud implementation. We have experience in testing leading SaaS products and understand the associated complexities.

What is an LMS? – Learning Management System Guide

LMS is an AI-developed application that accommodates in updating and managing the content for training and learning development programs. The corporate and non-corporate organizations use LMS for official purposes like office administration, course documentation, tracking the performance of the learners, ­­­­and supports online and offline learning.

Learning

What can you do with a Learning Management Software (LMS)?

Compared to the earlier times, the Learning Management System Software (LMS) has changed. The corporate sector and education industry use LMS according to their needs. With up-to-date Learning Management Software (LMS), you can avoid unnecessary labor like:

 Preparing manuals
• PowerPoint slides
• Spreadsheets in learning administration.

The following are the things you can do with an LMS.

• Reduce your cost – Are you in a tight situation because of COVID-19? Well, that could be one of the passing phases of your life. Unlike traditional teaching classroom methods, Learning & Development Software is cheaper. Even though the application needs an initial investment, it is a one-time investment. You can reuse the app to train the students and staff and conduct online training. You can use valuable resources according to your allocated budget for better coaching.

• Monitor and assess the progress – Designed to track and monitor the student’s and the tutor’s progress at any given time, the Learning Management System Software ensures that both faculties and students show a drastic improvement in their performances. Furthermore, LMS education also allows you to track learner’s progress and see whether their performance reaches the expected milestones. The students don’t have the time constraints to ask questions or doubts to their instructors as they can get the answers from the faculties once they read their messages. Even in the corporate companies, the employers can gauge the employees whether they are at the home, office, or even at the client’s place.

• Get the time flexibility – The students can study the subjects online with the help of Learning Management Systems at their pace through desktop, laptops, or tablets as long as they have access to the internet. It also helps the companies to harness the technology, which enhances your efficiency. The LMS also helps you to meet the demand for payroll or HR systems as it automatically adds or removes the employees across systems.

• Saves your time – The e-learning system saves time for the teachers, students, and companies. From the teachers’ perspective, they can create content from the student’s viewpoint, automate the assignment, and perform an incredible analysis of students’ performance. All these features make learning enjoyable and increase the students’ enthusiasm to perform better. In an organization, the employees can learn new things so they can increase productivity with uncompromised quality.

• Maintain social distancing while learning and working – The LMS makes your learning and productivity unstoppable despite the economic slowdown, owing to the reasons like COVID-19 or others. The online learning & remote working helps you gain more knowledge & earn a steady income while maintaining social distancing.

• E-Commerce – Many learning centers now develop e-commerce websites via LMS Software. It enables the students to place an order for the study materials online & start studying after receiving them at their doorstep. The companies can generate revenue with the help of cross-selling, which gives an incentive to the users after making a purchase.

• Easy upgrades – As the Learning Management System (LMS) uses the centralized location for the content, you can easily upgrade the information according to the specification of new trends. The end-users get continuous updates from time-to-time.

Related:- Data analytics, hybrid cloud & stream processing

Who uses LMS?

1. Students – The students of educational institute can easily study and solve the assignments allocated by their instructors.

2. Teachers – The LMS enables the teachers to give the students additional information once they prepare the content.
Educational Institutions – Make use of LMS to reduce the cost & generate income from students. They use the software to gauge their employees by collecting the students’ feedback on teaching methods, study materials, etc.

3. Corporates – There is a slight difference between educational institutes & corporate companies. Though both use LMS to monitor the employees, the corporates keep track of their productivity after undergoing the training after getting selected for a particular process.

4. Non-Profit Organizations – The other non-profit organizations are clubs, fitness centers, salons, healthcare centers, and others. They use LMS for the following reasons:

a. In-house talent development
b. Save training costs
c. Reduce training time
d. Safe and centralized storage
e. And others

Why do you need Learning Management Software?

Learning Management Software is one of the most powerful applications used for corporate and educational purposes. Do you know that over 83% of the companies across the globe are using LMS? With the increasing demand of learning management platforms in the market, the forecasted net worth has a projection to attain $23.21 billion by 2023. The Learning Management System Software makes your life easier through content delivery and helps you handle onboarding, compliance, and skills gap analysis.

Benefits of Learning Management Systems

 Cost Savings – The Learning Management Application helps in online teaching & training. It reduces conveyance charges to the employees, optimizes training costs, and minimizes the usage facilities. You only need to pay the salary to the instructors. The LMS can perform more tasks than what you can imagine.

• Makes the driving compliance easier – The compliance rules and regulations keep changing. However, when it comes to updating the traditional online course, it would consume much time. The Learning Management System already has readymade content. Hence, you can easily upgrade the content through modification. Adding the latest news and eliminating outdated information ensures that people are on the same page. The LMS enables you to unlearn and relearn the content according to the new compliance standards within a short time.

• Gives you a more engaging experience – Gone are those days where the employees had to undergo rigorous product training for long hours with their trainers in the conference room.

• Easy access to information – The Learning Management Software comprises a well-organized structure. The users can access the information irrespective of geographical location. The LMS helps the users to view and access the following in a single click.

 Courses
♦ Calendars
♦ Multimedia content
♦ Achieves
♦ Evaluations

The LMS offers the time flexibility to open the learning content and materials at your pace. You can learn a subject in whichever location you reside.

• Personalization – The LMS provides you a learning platform that helps in personalizing your brand completely. It further helps you to incorporate the corporate image, brand, into the platform. You can now tailor different elements and features according to your company’s taste, which can be in multilingual or monolingual. The LMS does not need additional installation for creating various portals and user IDs. Also, the application can function simultaneously with web access.

• Updated and Immediate Content – The administrators can use the Learning Management Systems to update the course content instantly. They can also add materials & provide the students with immediate access to valuable resources.

• Advanced Reporting – The LMS allows you to download the detailed performance reports of the students and staff through after streamlining.

• Multimedia Learning – Are you looking for an application that will enable you to create multimedia learning content? The LMS is advanced software that helps an organization to develop the content. The corporates use the material for training the selected candidates in project training. The hospitals use the Learning Management Software to provide primary medical education to the students. The LMS helps in presenting the materials using video, images, audio, and text. Hence the Learning Management System serves as a great tool in learning new skills or information. Furthermore, the system enables learners to communicate with their trainers and their colleagues through chat platforms & online forums. The software also promotes a collaborative, interactive, attractive, and personal learning environment.

• Sales and commercialization – The LMS also help the organizations to generate substantial sales revenue. E-Commerce is a renowned way of selling your products and services. It helps you to manage and automate the platform through a supports the payment modes like credit card or bank transfer. The students can make an online payment, signing up for the course of their choice. Even the corporates can get unlimited benefits, using Learning Management Software.

Related:- Increased threat of cyber crime during coronavirus outbreak

Projecting the future of Learning Management System

In the present world, many organizations and institutes rely on the Learning Management System (LMS). In earlier times, people were making use of books and libraries. The students could only bank upon the teachers to attain knowledge. However, with the Internet, the students and workers can get more information from different sources.

You can gain plenty of information using devices like smartphones, social media, computers, MOOCs, and others.

› Does the Learning Management System have a future?

Yes, the LMS does have a scope in the upcoming days. In this pandemic situation, educational institutions have stopped running. But the employees are operating at home and are providing online training to the students.

The corporates are also suffering owing to COVID-19 setback. The employees are working remotely to maintain social distancing.

The COVID-19 cases are increasing across the globe and have resulted in a standstill. Furthermore, no one knows when the situation will come back to normalcy. However, most of the organizations are still running the show with the help of Learning Management Software.

The Learning Management System Software has helped in steady growth at the university level. Lately, the education scenario has witnessed drastic changes. The fortune companies aim at providing their employees with the best orientation to reach great heights. Hence, they invest in the Learning Management System that benefits them the most. The present and the future of LMS trends are:

 Enhanced communication – Communication plays a critical role in the business world. The Learning Management Software provides the platform to the employees to share their ideas with the coworkers.

• Crowd-Sourced Content – The companies, educational institutions, and other non-profit organizations must ensure they arrange the content that meets the user requirements.

• Gamification – It lets the learners understand concepts in an entertaining, interactive, and engaging manner. Gone are the days where the employees were in a toxic environment. Today, companies employ gamification technology to make their employees feel at ease. The LMS makes it possible for the employees to learn efficiently and deliver the right results to the organization.

• Artificial Intelligence (AI) changed LMS to competitive Intelligence –Artificial Intelligence plays various roles in our lives. For example, the virtual assistants give the news updates & weather reports before you retire to bed or wake up in the morning. Also, you get timely updates when the TV sets are on. The current generation has become addicted to technology to the extent of using Artificial Intelligence. The LMS makes AI, which helps in personalized and relevant learning. You also get insights according to the data and content on users’ behavior and requirements. The AI, in combination with LMS, helps you to update the content according to the latest requirements. It simplifies the task of L & D for the administrators and helps in smart work to deliver the newest enterprise learning.

• Impact of Artificial Intelligence on LMS – Has already begun. In the coming days, Artificial Intelligence has more expectations to build an effect on LMS space. The AI skips the automatic evaluation of:

1. How much the learner has understood the concept?
2. The adjustment of the learning pathway according to their understanding level.

Artificial Intelligence ensures an automated version of LMS that does the work of a great teacher. It gauges the mastery level of all individuals and provides them with relevant content. The LMS with AI makes learning easy for all the students.

Increased threat of cyber crime during coronavirus outbreak

Criminals are exploiting the pandemic to scam or threat and steal from businesses and individuals, with Action Fraud estimating £2m already lost by mid-April. Simple scams are targeting people’s fears by offering fake cures, tests and protections online, with the National Cyber Security Centre recording more than 70,000 malicious websites created since the pandemic was declared.

threat

More worrying are the thousands of different fake emails, web adverts and websites. These pretend to offer official government support on things like tax refunds, medical advice and business grants. Some criminals are sending out over a million emails at a time with the hope that they can tempt people into clicking on links, downloading apps or opening attachments; the links contain viruses or trick people to provide personal data or bank details. These ‘phishing’ emails then allow the criminal to steal and extort, sometimes without the victim being aware for weeks.

Related:- Top Open-source Data Visualization Tools

Tips on spotting a phishing email:

  • The criminals will try to make their email look convincing so don’t trust it just because it looks official or from a name you recognise
  • Poor spelling or grammar and bad quality images or logos are often a giveaway
  • An email asking you to provide information, especially if it is stressing urgency, is threatening, or is offering a reward, should be treated with suspicion. Do not give away personal or commercial data without caution
  • Does the sender’s email address look like it should and is it spelt correctly? You can sometimes check the validity of the sender’s address or any links by hovering your cursor over them, sometimes this can reveal the true address.
  • Be wary if the email does not address you by name or is from an unknown or unexpected sender
  • If the message is too good to be true…

Related:- Data analytics, hybrid cloud & stream processing

Simple steps to boost your cyber security:

  • Use different passwords for different websites so if one password is compromised the criminal will not have instant access to all of your sites. Passwords should be at least 10 characters long with mixed characters; current advice is to use 7hree $eperate Wordz
  • Ensure up to date antivirus, malware and firewalls are installed
  • Restrict account controls so staff can only access data or the parts of the system that they need to for their role. If an individual is breached this will restrict the access criminals have to the business.
  • Ensure portable devices are password protected and encrypted
  • Discourage the use of removable media, such as USB sticks, and personal devices, these are both common causes of valuable data being lost or unwanted problems getting in.
  • Train and educate staff in cyber hygiene and cyber security awareness, in most breaches people are the weak link
  • Consider completing Cyber Essentials certification for your business, which is proven to significantly reduce cyber risks
  • We strongly recommend that your business purchases cyber insurance, which can provide specialist technical and legal support in the event of a cyber incident as well as covering your financial losses.

Lastly, if you do fall foul of cyber-crime you should immediately report it to Action Fraud

Data analytics, hybrid cloud & stream processing

With AI and Machine Learning growing at a rapid pace, companies evolve their data infrastructure to benefit from the latest technological developments and stay ahead of the curve.

Shifting a company’s data infrastructure and operations to one that is “AI ready” entails several critical steps and considerations for data and analytics leaders looking to leverage Artificial Intelligence at scale, from ensuring that the required data processes to feed these technologies are in place, to securing the right set of skills for the job.

Therefore, companies usually begin their journey to “AI proficiency” by implementing technologies to streamline the operation (and orchestration) of data teams across their organisation and rethinking business strategy — what data do they actually need?  This is a natural first step for most organizations, given that Machine Learning and other AI initiatives rely heavily on the availability and quality of input data to produce meaningful and correct outputs. Guaranteeing that the pipelines producing these outputs operate under desirable performance and fault tolerance requirements becomes a necessary, but secondary step.

Data

As a recent O’Reilly Media study showed, more than 60% of organisations plan to spend at least 5% of their IT budget over the next 12 months on Artificial Intelligence.

Related:- The changing weather of cloud infrastructure

Considering that interest in AI continues to grow and companies plan to invest heavily in AI initiatives for the remainder of the year, we can expect a growing number of early-adopter organisations to spend more IT budgets on foundational data technologies for collecting, cleaning, transforming, storing and making data widely available in the organisation. Such technologies may include platforms for data integration and ETL, data governance and metadata management, amongst others.

Still, the great majority of organisations that set out on this journey already employ teams of data scientists or likewise skilled employees, and leverage the flexibility of infrastructure in the cloud to explore and build organisation-wide data services platforms. Such platforms ideally support collaboration through multi-tenancy and coordinate multiple services under one roof, democratizing data access and manipulation within the organisation. It comes as no surprise that technology behemoths like Uber, Airbnb and Netflix have rolled out their own internal data platforms that empower users by streamlining difficult processes like training and production sing Deep Learning models or reusing Machine Learning models across experiments.

But how do companies step up their infrastructure to become “AI ready”? Are they deploying data science platforms and data infrastructure projects on premises or taking advantage of a hybrid, multi-cloud approach to their infrastructure? As more and more companies embrace the “write once, run anywhere” approach to data infrastructure, we can expect more enterprise developments in a combination of on-prem and cloud environments or even a combination of different cloud services for the same application. In a recent O’Reilly Media survey, more than 85% of respondents stated that they plan on using one (or multiple) of the seven major public cloud providers for their data infrastructure projects, namely AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, Oracle, IBM, Alibaba Cloud or other partners.

Related:- Top Open-source Data Visualization Tools

Enterprises across geographies expressed interest in shifting to a cloud data infrastructure as a means to leveraging AI and Machine Learning with more than 80% of respondents across North America, EMEA and Asia replying that this is their desired choice. A testament to the growing trend towards a hybrid, multi-cloud application development is the finding in the same survey that 1 out of 10 respondents uses all three major cloud providers for some part of their data infrastructure (Google Cloud Platform, AWS and Microsoft Azure).

Without question, once companies become serious about their AI and Machine Learning efforts, technologies for effectively collecting and processing data at scale become not just a top priority, but an essential necessity. This is no surprise, given the importance of real-time data for developing, training and serving ML models for the modern enterprise. Continuous processing and real-time data architectures also become key when Machine Learning and other Artificial Intelligence use cases move into production.

This is where Apache Flink comes into play as a first-class open source stream processing engine: built from the bottom-up for stream processing, with unbeatable performance characteristics, a highly scalable architecture, strong consistency and fault tolerance guarantees, Flink is used and battle-tested by the largest streaming production deployments in the world, processing massive amounts of real-time data with sub-second latency.

Examples of such large scale use cases include Netflix, using Apache Flink for real-time data processing to build, maintain and serve Machine Learning models that power different parts of the website, including video recommendations, search results ranking and selection of artwork, and Google using Apache Flink, together with Apache Beam and TensorFlow to develop TensorFlow Extended (TFX), an end-to-end machine learning platform for TensorFlow that powers products across all of Alphabet.

The journey to Artificial Intelligence proficiency might seem like an overwhelming and daunting task at first. Making the right investments and decisions upfront to nurture the right data engineering and analytics infrastructure, thinking cloud-based and considering stream processing as a real-time business enabler will help tech leaders to navigate through the journey successfully and accelerate their enterprise into an AI-led organisation of the future.

Top Open-source Data Visualization Tools

Data Visualization is a method of presenting data in a visual format. The pictorials and graphs help decision-makers comprehend information. Data visualization recognizes patterns, concepts, and trends in large data sets. Data visualization is a process that helps businesses of all sizes and industries.Visualization

Open Source Data Visualization tools have tremendously impacted the corporate world. In this article, we will learn about various open-source data visualization tools.

Here are a few benefits of businesses using free and open-source Data Visualization tools:

  • Open Source Data Visualization tools would help in decision making. It will fulfill tasks such as presenting data patterns, correlations, and trends using graphic elements.
  • There are multiple ranges of tools available. Each with features and functions to support user objectives.
  • The tools ensure data accuracy and protect vital information. The tools are said to collaborate with security solutions to maintain data security.
  • The tools alert and notify users about the completion of tasks. They also send out notifications in case a task is missed.
  • The tools comprehend data and provide suggestions to improve business performance.
  • The tools help small businesses by reducing costs as they are free and open source.

Open-Source Data Visualization Tools and their Key Features:

Tableau Public

Tableau Public is a free and open-sourced data visualization tool. It is a platform that allows users to freely share and explore data visualizations publicly.

They provide Data Visualization or “vizzes” as they call them, to help users comprehend data under any public topic.

Key Features:

  • It allows users to share visualized data publicly.
  • It provides over 3 million interactive data visualizations created by 1 million global users.
  • It is a fully hosted tool that can manage millions of viewers and infrastructure.

Google Charts

Google Charts is a simple and free data visualization tool. It is a cloud-based tool that provides a library of data charts.

It provides multiple default charts but also allows limitless customization. It connects users in an online Google Charts forum where they support one another to create visualized data.

Key Features:

  • It allows users to access charts and data tools from any web-browser without plug-ins.
  • It allows users to create multiple dashboards and also helps match the chart colors as per the website or business.
  • It manages the content on the charts and connects real-time data using data connection and protocol tools.

Leaflet

Leaflet is an open-source JavaScript library. It enables users to create mobile-friendly interactive maps.

Developers use the variety of mapping features already embedded in the tool.

Key Features:

  • It is a simple and lightweight tool with a size of only 38 kb of JavaScript.
  • It provides multiple plugins to add features and customizations.
  • It works well on mobile and desktop platforms.
  • It offers visual, user interaction, and performance features zoom, drag panning inertia, keyboard navigation, hardware acceleration, etc.
  • It provides mapping controls like zoom buttons, attribution, layer switcher, and scale.

D3.js

D3.js is a JavaScript library that develops and manipulates documents based on data. D3 stands for Data-Driven Documents that manipulate Data Object Model (DOM).

Related:- What’s Your Route to Enterprise AI Adoption?

Key Features:

  • It visualizes data for users with HTML, SVG, and CSS.
  • It uses the full capacity of a browser to develop visualizations without tying to a proprietary framework.
  • It connects users to a DOM and applies data-driven manipulations to documents.

Plotly

Plotly is an open-sourced browser-based data visualization tool. It is an interactive solution built on d3.js visualization libraries.

Key Features:

  • It allows users to create d3.js visualizations by simply uploading excel files or connecting the SQL database.
  • It enables users to work with R or Python to create charts.
  • Comparing datasets becomes easier with its multi-chart visualization.
  • It creates and displays complex charts on dashboards and websites.
  • It allows users to collaborate and share data with different teams and members.

Charted

Charted is a free and open-source tool that automatically visualizes data. The Product Science at Medium created the tool in 2013.

It focuses only on visualization and does not transform format or store data.

Key Features:

  • It only requires a CSV file or Google Sheets link to create visualizations.
  • It analyzes and displays discoveries with the data science team.
  • The tool comes with integrated components that help with visualizations.
  • It also supports tab-delimited files and Dropbox links and requires no training for users.

Datawrapper

Datawrapper is an open-sourced tool that is mobile-friendly. It provides users with simple, accurate, and embeddable visualizations within minutes.

The tool was created by a team of 15 developers in 2011. It is vastly used by journalists although it is comprehensive enough for data scientists and researchers.

Key Features:

  • It provides free and paid versions for users.
  • It provides interactive charts for viewers to comprehend underlying values.
  • It helps create charts and reports within minutes.

Polymaps

Polymaps is an open-source JavaScript library. It creates dynamic and interactive maps in modern web browsers.

It is another tool to use SVG functionality that facilitates styling through CSS which enables interactivity.

Key Features:

  • It displays multi-zoom datasets over maps for users.
  • It leverages SVG to display and uses CSS to enable users to define the design.
  • It loads a full range of data to showcase information from the country level to states, cities, neighborhoods, and individual streets.

Candela

Candela is an open-source web-visualization tool from Kitware’s Resonant platform. It is a full suite of interoperable data visualization components.

It focuses on creating rich and scalable visualizations. Its API is used in real-world data science applications.

Key Features:

  • It creates rich and scalable visualizations for users.
  • It provides a normalized API to apply in real-world data science scenarios.
  • It enables installation through standard package repositories systems or from a source.

Dygraphs

Dygraphs is a flexible open-source JavaScript charting library. It enables users to explore and understand complex data sets.

Key Features:

  • Its primary feature includes handling heavy data sets and plotting millions of data points without getting bogged down.
  • It displays strong support for error bars and confidence intervals.
  • It is a customizable tool and this flexibility allows it to work well with all browsers.

Related:- The changing weather of cloud infrastructure

RAWGraphs

RAWGraphs is an open-source data visualization platform. The tagline on the website states “missing link between spreadsheets and data visualizations”.

The user can simply cut/paste data, upload, or provide a link for the data sets to access a variety of charts.

Key Features:

  • It provides users with multiple unconventional visualization models.
  • It is built on the D3.js library and is designed for technical as well as non-technical users.
  • It builds links between spreadsheets and vector graphics editors.
  • It is a web-based platform and handles data through browsers.

OpenHeatMap

OpenHeatMap is a basic online mapping tool. It enables users to upload csv, excel or Google Sheets files to create maps.

It uses data to build static or animated maps. It enables users to view the data in different locations and visualize changes.

Key Features:

  • Developers can use the tool to access mapping functionalities of their own website.
  • It helps users to communicate through interactive maps that may be static or animated.
  • It provides customer demographics data according to zip codes.

Palladio

Palladio is a free web-based tool that visualizes complex, historical and multidimensional data. It allows users to visualize data from CSV, TAB, and/or TSV files.

It is a product created in Stanford University’s Networks in History.

Key Features:

  • Its graph view enables users to visualize relationships between data dimensions.
  • Its list view feature helps users arrange the data in customized lists.
  • It easily visualizes complex historical data.

Databox

Databox is a cloud-based business data dashboard tool. Users can easily connect a data source and choose attributes to be auto-populated in the dashboard.

Key Features:

  • It collaborates with data sources like HubSpot CRM, Google Analytics, Instagram, and Facebook Ads.
  • It has a DIY Dashboard creator that allows users to choose from multiple templates and design dashboards without a designer or a coder.
  • Its key performance indicator scorecards, advanced data modeling, and goal tracking allow data analysts to predict business performance.

Mode

Mode is a free, interactive, and cloud-based platform. It analyzes complex datasets and provides reports.

It is a browser-based data visualization tool that streamlines data for users.

Key Features:

  • It provides a top-level and analytical workflow for users.
  • It provides a unique URL to each project which makes it easier to share the links among teams and members.
  • It works with servers like Microsoft Azure SQL, Amazon Redshift, Oracle, MySQL, SQL, etc.
  • It provides free courses for users to learn online.

Conclusion:

Open Source Data Visualization tools are an important aspect of data analytics. Businesses that use data visualization tools leverage actionable information from the analyzed data.

The changing weather of cloud infrastructure

The pandemic has highlighted how integral technology infrastructure is to help us work, shop and interact with each other. As more of our critical infrastructure and services become dependent on software hosted in the cloud, outages are more than just an inconvenience.

But many businesses are playing a risky game with their cloud providers. They often use one main provider, located in a small number of places around the world – meaning if downtime occurs, they are left high and dry. On top of this, there are various data sovereignty and privacy concerns associated with using one sole provider across borders.

infrastructure

In this piece we’ll explore the changing weather of cloud infrastructure, including the rise of local providers, the increasing data sovereignty complications, and how diversifying to a multi-cloud approach can help businesses address these challenges.

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Local cloud options

When choosing a cloud provider, large organisations are often drawn to using one of the ‘big five’ suppliers. Of these, four of the five (Amazon, Microsoft, Google and IBM) are American.

With the US having recently passed the CLOUD act, which has provisions that enable the US government to demand access to data stored by American companies overseas, many companies that handle sensitive information are concerned about the privacy aspect of storing their data with these US-based companies.

Businesses are therefore considering building their online presence across providers within each jurisdiction they operate in. By seeking local market providers who provide cloud-based durability, cost-effectiveness and ease-of-use, they can rest assured that they are operating within the legal framework of each country they are established in.

These local options are expected to increase over the next few years, given moves to promote competition, such as the EU’s recent ruling that countries should be encouraging local providers over the large US-based cloud vendors.

Data sovereignty complications across borders

Organizations who operate across several different countries are also impacted by a global web of data protection and residency legislation, which applies to the user data they hold, yet most companies are not even thinking about it.

This is because current national and international legislation around tax, data protection and privacy are not compatible with one another, which makes dealing with data and transactions ethically a quagmire.

There is a definitive need for a simplification of digital tax and data policy within major trading blocks. For example, although GDPR is a block-wide requirement in the EU, handling VAT on transactions is done on a nation-by-nation basis and needs to be managed independently for each country that gets serviced. This is incredibly complicated for a market that is increasingly dominated by digital transactions.

Read More:- What’s Your Route to Enterprise AI Adoption?

Addressing these challenges

Over the next few years, and in absence of a universal simplification, the challenge for many global companies will be to ensure they are compliant to the increasing amounts of data protection legislations, which seek to regulate how they use and store data across countries.

This challenge, combined with a much larger public awareness of data privacy and consumer’s rights, means that organisations immediately need to be transparent about their use of data and who it can be accessed by.

To do this, awareness and protection are the first line of defence and, as well as getting an experienced lawyer to draft your company’s privacy policies, a risk assessment should be undertaken to determine potential exposure.

With increasingly aware customers, businesses should be especially aware of the possibility of receiving Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests from the public who want to know how their data is being used. To prepare, businesses should ensure they have systems in place to handle the formal processing of these requests.

Most importantly, in a time when the vaults of data businesses own and use are getting larger and more complex, companies need to ensure they’re compliant and avoid making mistakes. From marketing lists, to customer mailing lists and ad-hoc visitor lists, organizations need to clearly think through how they are working with people’s data and keep track of it.

Building a multi-cloud approach

To help address these challenges, business leaders should consider building their applications across a range of providers within their own borders in order to mitigate their risk around compliance.

For businesses, doing this also means that they can access data centres in areas which are not provided by the primary cloud provider and manage costs and resources more effectively by taking advantage of reduced prices or specialized offerings which are not available with large vendors.

A key consideration when looking at moving to a multi-cloud approach is the role of API management.

As moving data tends to rely heavily on APIs, supporting a multi-cloud strategy requires evaluating your API management approach – this includes finding an API management solution that is capable of working in a multi-cloud, multi-region configuration, while ideally providing a centralised view.

With countries around the world beginning to build their own internal cloud infrastructure and with the increasing demand for domestic data storage solutions, the future for businesses is multi-cloud.

Although the temptation may be to simply think short-term amid the pandemic, true business leaders will be focused on building for the future. Along with enabling remote working, this means investing in improving agility and efficiency. Considering a multi-cloud strategy, with all the flexibility, cost benefits and competitive advantages it offers, will help them to do that.