There is an old joke, I heard it in the 70’s. The joke goes like “John, I have no idea how this firm has any chance of surviving without your presence, but as per this coming Monday, we will give that a try!”, and whenever I see staff removals happening, including me getting made redundant years ago, that joke goes around my brain. So when the BBC gives us ‘Boss says sorry for ‘blundered’ Zoom firing of 900 staff’ (at https://www.bbc.com/news/business-59573146). So we get the outrage linked to “Mr Garg was heavily criticised after he sacked 900 staff in an online meeting”, There is one other setting that I do not get. You see, we get the following part “A deal is likely to value the business – which Mr Garg founded in 2015 – at between $6.9bn (£5.2bn) and $7.7bn”, so in 6 years a firm has grown to $7,000,000,000 and he casually fires 900 people? Didn’t they help the business grow? So, as we set the larger stage we get ““Organisations do have to make job cuts sometimes, it is a hard reality,” says Rachel Suff, senior policy adviser on employee relations at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. “But how they go about it and the humanity they approach it with can have a fundamental impact on how people deal with that shocking news.”” Yes, we can be humane, and we can be callous. Yet the stage of firing 900 people when you went from (assumed) zero to $7,000,000,000 in 6 years is quite the success story, as such the move makes no sense, unless he wants to hang his coat up and retire a multi billionaire. As I see it, the setting of “to float the company on the stock market”, a choice that might be valid, it might not be. I cannot tell, it is not area of expertise, yet the question becomes towards it mission statement “Better.com, which aims to use technology to make the house buying process “faster and more efficient””, is that one direction, was it also safer to do that, or has someone figured out that the faster and more efficient comes with larger safety holes? I actually do not know, but that is the first question that pops into my head.
You see, we do see “The market has changed”, yet I also find “Home values in New York (statewide) have risen 14.2 percent (current = $363,990) in the last year and will continue to rise in 2021. Over the last year, home values in New York City have increased by 4.5 percent. The latest market forecast is not available for NYC”, so I am not sure what is going on and before we go all high and mighty on the 900 removed people, it represents 15% of removed staff, implying that better.com did one hell of a job, it implies that he still employs 5100 people. The article does not really bear that out does it? I am not blaming the BBC for that, but the setting of what still is remains important. If there is one critique on this, then it is their homesite that still has a career page that is hiring. I reckon that there should be a clear page setting something like “Due to volatile market settings, all hiring activities are temporarily suspended”, as such I reckon that this Vishal Garg optionally missed the ball twice over. But that small part was not picked up either by the media. The website actually looks decent, so the business is seemingly not too shabby.
So whilst the BBC is all about slapping him around, and that is fine. No one is considering the fact that 5100 are still employed and that a startup has grown from close to zero to $7,000,000,000 a feat that is pretty rare to say the least.
I find it hard to condemn the act (I had been made redundant more harshly then that in the past). It happens to us all one day, unless we are on the board of directors, in which case we get a huge bonus and we are escorted to the limousine.
I just had an idea, it got to me when I was tweeting with a person I know. A few minutes later my mind grabbed back to the age when I had a Dell laptop. Then an idea grabbed me. I wonder why Apple never considered this. When you have more than one device, when you need your MacBook Pro or air too regularly. Did no one consider the power of the docking station, or the port replicator? Instead of connecting device after device, having a station on your desk where you can connect your iPod touch, your iPad, your MacBook, iMac or Mac Pro to all with one replicator in the centre of it all. A setting where they are all connected, with the station also connecting to an external keyboard, external drive and optionally a larger screen. The power of direct connectivity when you get home. The songs, the tablet and all of it to a larger screen, more storage and not to forget interacting all with one another. No worry whether you had the document on your tablet, your laptop or even your iMac or Mac Pro. Connecting them all through one station. You see, when you have one Apple product, you might have more, I do and many other do too. Even for non Apple products the setting of connecting laptops, desktops, music solutions, and tablets, all whilst giving any the power to connect to Bluetooth speakers is becoming increasingly important, especially as streaming will go from device to device. A multi system station, no matter if it is a docking station or more aptly seeing it as a connecting port replicator will take the foreground in the near future. I synch my iPad, and soon my iPod touch (my iPod Classic will not connect), a larger setting of interactivity is required and consider that when you get home, via the replicator. Connecting to data on tablet, laptop and desktop they can all grasp the data of one another and they can all be used in conjunction. A setting that none have offered, always in the second degree, so why not in the first degree? That would be real innovation and so far none have opted for it, They all want to do each other work, they all want to do the same, but the laptop makes you less mobile, the tablet has its own restrictions, but on the road it is OK. And so on, yet at home we need access to all, we need it all without a larger setting and the cloud is too often a limitation, especially when it is confidential data. The people need their secure environment and anyone stating that the cloud is a safe space is lying to you. Some give you “Cloud security is tight, but it’s not infallible. … But the bigger risk with cloud storage is privacy. Even if data isn’t stolen or published, it can still be viewed. Governments can legally request information stored in the cloud, and it’s up to the cloud services provider to deny access.”
So why not set the stage where it is with you and with you alone? And when we look at the data breaches with. Microsoft, Estee Lauder, MGM Resorts, Facebook, Zoom, Magellan Health, Cognizant, Nintendo, Twitter, and Whisper. These are places with large infrastructures and cyber sections and they could not keep THEIR data safe, how much of a chance do you have? I am not anti-cloud. It has its uses, but it has a bad safety reputation, as such the replicator gives more and offer more too. It is just a thought, but it Tok me less than 30 minutes to seek out part of all this and write it down and when we add the streaming gaming platform the need increases rapidly.
All devices that need connection, whilst the connection does not always exist.
So consider what you have and how easy it would be to connect it. Now, if you only have 2 devices the value is not really there, but consider a desktop and a laptop connected giving the user access to both, would that make it? I thought initially to connect the Apple devices, but the setting is much larger and will grow over time. Consider that the MacBook Air has a max of 2TB and so does the new iMac, so why have 2 backups when both can be connected and be connected to a much larger drive, seagate offers 4TB for $99, WD has 6TB for $200, and that offers perspectives to keep your music in one location, not on all locations. Option after option are added as we see more devices connected and I am surprised that no one took it into that direction, especially Apple.
I saw an article at the BBC and I will get to that in a moment, but it reminded me of a situation that happened in 2010. I needed a new laptop and I was looking in a shop at their Collection of laptops. A man came to me and was trying to convince me just how amazing this laptop was. My inner demon was grinning, I get it, the man was enthusiastic, he was giving the numbers, but in all this, did he realise what he was saying? I am not doubting the man’s skills, he was doing a good job, I was however in IT and had been there for 30 years, so I have pretty much seen it all, and there it was, my little demon, on my right shoulder calling me ‘pussy’. So as the man stated ‘this laptop has a one terabyte hard-drive, can you even imagine ho much that is?’, I could not resist and my response was ‘Yup, that would fit roughly 10% of my porn collection’, his jaw dropped to the ground, his eyes almost popped, the demon inside me stated ‘Nice!’ Actually, it was not quite true, it would only fit a rough 0.32114%. It was the impact of the shock factor. You see, there is a hidden agenda there, when you (appropriately) use the technique, you get to see the real salesperson and that was what I needed. He was thrown, but he recomposed and continued giving me the goods on the laptop, I bought that laptop roughly 132 seconds later.
So today I saw ‘The Rise of extortionware’ (at https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-56570862), here I notice “where hackers embarrass victims into paying a ransom”, it is not new, it is not even novel. I will also give you the second game after the people involved get arrested, they will demand anonymity and any bleeding heart judge will comply. I state that these people will be handed the limelight so that the people that faced ransomware attacks can take their frustration out of these people. But that remains wishful thinking. So next we get “Experts say the trend towards ransoming sensitive private information could affect companies not just operationally but through reputation damage. It comes as hackers bragged after discovering an IT Director’s secret porn collection.” I have the question was it a private or a company computer? You see, sone focus on the boobies, just what the advertisers on Twitter hope for, they want the click bitches, it makes them money. It is time that we set the larger stage, you see the entire mess would be smaller if Cisco and Microsoft had done a proper job. OK, I apologise, Cisco does a proper job, but some things slip through and in combination with Microsoft exchange servers it is not slipping through, it is a cyber hole the size an iceberg created on the Titanic and we need to set a much larger stage. So when we see “Thanks God for [named IT Director]. While he was [masturbating] we downloaded several hundred gigabytes of private information about his company’s customers. God bless his hairy palms, Amen!”, it seemingly answers that he might keep it on a corporate computer, or he uses his private computer for company stuff. Yet in that same light the hacker should not be allowed any anonymity, we all get to see who the hacker is. If there is something to be learned it is see with “Hackers are now actually searching the data for information that can be weaponised. If they find anything that is incriminating or embarrassing, they’ll use it to leverage a larger pay-out. These incidents are no longer simply cyber-attacks about data, they are full-out extortion attempts” There are two sides
The station of ALWAYS ONLINE needs to change, there needs to be an evolving gateway of anti hack procedures and a stage of evolving anti hack routers and monitoring software. You think that Zoom is an option? Tom’s Guide gave us less than 2 weeks ago “More than a dozen security and privacy problems have been found in Zoom”, as well as “Zoom’s ease of use has made it easy for troublemakers to “bomb” open Zoom meetings. Information-security professionals say Zoom’s security has had a lot of holes, although most have been fixed over the past few year”, so whilst you contemplate ‘most have been fixed’, consider that not all are fixed and that is where the problem goes from somewhat to enormous. Well over 20% of the workforce works at home, has zoom meetings and that is how cyber criminals get the upper hand (as well as through disgruntled employees), a change in mindset is only a first station.
Remember that Australian? (Julian Assange) We were told that soon there would be some leaks on issues on banks (Wall Street) then it suddenly became silent, now some will say that it is a bluff, but in light of the meltdown in 2008, I am not so certain, I reckon that some have ways to show the hackers who they are and they profit by not doing that. Can I prove this? Absolutely not. It is speculation, but when you look at the timeline, my speculation makes sense.
The third side is optionally the second side as the second side might not be a real side. When we see “Hackers are now actually searching the data for information that can be weaponised. If they find anything that is incriminating or embarrassing, they’ll use it to leverage a larger pay-out. These incidents are no longer simply cyber-attacks about data, they are full-out extortion attempts”, the underlying station is ‘information that can be weaponised’ and the IT sector is helping them.
How did I get there? The cloud is not as secure as some state, and the salespeople need to take notice. Business Insider gave us about 6 months ago “70% of Companies Storing Data With Cloud Companies Hacked or Breached”, see the link we are now slowly getting presented?
In the OSI model, we see layers 3-7 (layer 8 is the user). So as some have seen the issues from Cisco, Microsoft and optionally Zoom, we see a link of issues from layer 3 through to layer 7 ALL setting a dangerous stage. Individually there is no real blame and their lawyers will happily confirm that, but when we see security flaw upon security flaw, there is a larger stage of dangers and we need to take notice. And here the dangers become a lot more interesting when we consider the Guardian yesterday when we saw “Intelligence value of SolarWinds hacking of then acting secretary Chad Wolf is not publicly known”, what else is not publicly known? How many media outlets ignored the Cisco matter, how come ZDNet is one of the few giving us “it’s not releasing patches for some of the affected devices that reached end of life” less than 8 weeks ago. Again I say Cisco did the right thing by informing its customers close to immediately, yet when we see “More than 247,000 Microsoft Exchange servers are yet to be patched against the CVE-2020-0688 post-auth remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability impacting all Exchange Server versions under support” (source: bleepingcomputers.com) as far as I can see, a lot of the media ignored it, but they will shout and repeat the dangers of Huawei, without being shown actual evidence, and I state here, that unless we make larger changes, the extortion path will evolve and become a lot larger. With 70% of cloud systems getting hacked or breached, a large chunk of the Fortune 500 will pay too much to keep quiet and who gets to pay for that? There is a rough 99.867765% chance that its board members will not, it might be speculatively, so please prove me wrong.
A stage where the needs of the consumers changes in a stage where the corporations are not ready to adjust and all whilst the IT salespeople have that golden calf that does everything and make you coffee as well. Adjustments are needed, massive adjustments are needed and we need to make them now before the cybercriminals are in control of our IT needs and that is not mere speculation, when you see flaw after flaw and too little is done as too many are the victim of its impact is a serious breach and it has been going on for some time, but now it is seemingly out in the light and too many are doing too little and as we laugh at “God bless his hairy palms, Amen!” Consider that stage, and now consider that they invade a financial institution, these are clever criminals, they do not empty your account, they merely take $1, perhaps $1 every other month, this implies that they are looking at a $16,000,000 every two months. And this is merely one bank, one in a thousand banks, some a lot bigger than the Australian Commonwealth bank and lets face it, the fact that layer 3 to layer 7 is leaky in hundreds of thousands of customers, do you really think that banks are off-limits? Do you really think that this is a simple hick-up or that the scenery is changing this quickly by people claiming that it will be fixed in no-time?
We need massive changes and we need them a lot sooner than we think.