The FBI say, many toys sporting cloud-backed features such as speech recognition or online content hosting “could put the privacy and safety of children at risk due to the large amount of personal information that may be unwittingly disclosed.
“Security safeguards for these toys can be overlooked in the rush to market them and to make them easy to use,” the FBI warns. “Consumers should perform online research of these products for any known issues that have been identified by security researchers or in consumer reports.”
This comes after a number of kids’ toys were found to be indirectly spying on kids by collecting and storing data, including audio conversations and personal information, without parents’ knowledge.
Germany’s Federal Network Agency, or Bundesnetzagentur, has banned Genesis Toys’ Cayla doll as an illegal surveillance device.
New York-Enterprise users will gain unprecedented control over their technology environment in 2014.
Continued targeted attacks and high-profile security breaches propel corporate boards of directors to demand substantial increases in security investments in 2014 , and rethinking of traditional approaches to cyber security management. Enterprises will develop and execute hybrid cyber security-management models that combine a staff of in-house security-minded business experts with trusted managed security services across a broad range of capabilities such as identity management, security analytics and cyber intelligence, and governance, risk and compliance.
Organizations that embrace the new information technology world of cloud, mobility and M2M will see IT increasingly decentralized. IT will be core to every business function. As a result, IT will work more closely with individual business units and focus on developing tools for seamless process enablement that empowers employees and customers.
In 2014, adding software and services to the cloud will be a key focus for cloud providers seeking to attract customers, adding gravity and encouraging user stickiness. Integrated cloud offerings will increasingly enable mashups of fixed and mobile networks; systems, ideas and solutions; people and things; and intelligence and information. Providing systems and tools to transform these data into insights in the cloud and on demand is expected to transform the customer experience.
Amazon has more than 100 job openings for people who can get a top secret clearance, which includes a U.S. government administered polygraph examination. It needs software developers, operations managers and cloud support engineers, among others.Amazon’s hiring effort includes an invitation-only recruiting event for systems support engineers at its Herndon, Va., facility on Sept. 24 and 25. Amazon was initially selected by the U.S. over IBM to build a cloud platform. IBM protested the award and prevailed in an administrative ruling. Amazon filed a 61-page complaint in federal court last month challenging the decision to re-bid this project.
The vendors were required to address hypothetical scenarios. In one instance, it involved the processing of 100 terabytes of data. But the scenario was ambiguous, and the vendors priced it in different ways, making it impossible to compare prices, wrote Moran.
There were other issues with the bid, but overall the Ptak Noel report said the CIA “did a poor job with a poorly worded” request for proposals. The Ptak Noel report goes further and argues that the “CIA showed bias in favor of Amazon,” but it also faulted IBM, saying the company needed to do a better job of writing and presenting its proposal. IBM said it did not pay for the Ptak Noel report.
Amazon describes IBM as “a traditional fixed IT infrastructure provider and late entrant to the cloud computing market.”
IT’s analyst Charles King, says he’s “a bit uncomfortable with Amazon’s positioning” in the lawsuit of cloud services “as something new that a vendor like IBM is somehow incapable of delivering.”
The government was apparently willing to pay a premium for Amazon’s cloud implementation. The amount of the bid by the vendors wasn’t disclosed, but government evaluation of the bids put the prices at $148 million for Amazon versus $93 million for IBM.
Analysis of this dispute is difficult because the government has redacted parts of the information around it. But Bill Moran, an analyst at Ptak Noel & Associates, describes in a report, some of the problems the vendors faced.
Government incentives and mandates are driving every healthcare provider organization to use electronic health records (EHRs). This has led to an urgent need for healthcare organizations to manage volumes of data and have at their disposal IT expertise. The cloud is proving to be a cost effective and secure model for integrating disparate healthcare systems, allowing physicians to share patient data and coordinate care. Also, social media and mobile are having a big impact in healthcare, changing the nature and speed of interaction between consumers and healthcare organizations.