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Thursday, June 26, 2014

News roundup: This week's tech trends

Stay in-the-know with these four tech topics from this week.

Category:   News and Events

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From guarding against payment fraud to the Internet of Things, here's what's going on in the tech world this week.

'Risky behaviors' makes people vulnerable for credit card fraud 
Data breaches and payment card fraud seem to have a regular place in the headlines. According to a study by payments company ACI Worldwide and research firm Aite Group, 41 percent of Americans have been affected by credit, debit, or prepaid card fraud over the past five years, Market Watch reported. The source noted that, unlike other countries, the United States still uses the magnetic stripe technology to process this information. While businesses have a responsibility to implement secure file transfer and other measures, consumers can increase their protection by avoiding risky behaviors. The source suggested that people reduce their vulnerability by:

  • Locking smartphones when not using them.
  • Shredding or otherwise destroying papers with bank account numbers, instead of throwing them out.
  • Avoiding using public or unsecure computers for banking or making purchases.
  • Not giving banking information as requested by emails or phone calls.
  • Memorizing PIN numbers rather than carrying them around on a note.

Companies continue to struggle with cloud migration 
A recent Enterprise Management Associates survey commissioned by VMWare revealed that IT organizations lack the skill set required to manage and monitor the complex systems created by cloud solutions, InformationWeek reported. Consequently, they're "flying blind" in their endeavors to take advantage of cloud computing opportunities. Nonetheless, the news source cautioned against taking this study too pessimistically, noting that many companies have made the cloud a key component of their business strategies. The study found that over half of customers have experienced difficulty or failure with their first cloud encounters, with pricing, technical support, performance, downtime, and management representing the most significant hurdles.

PC era still going strong, tech suppliers say 
Despite increasing attention on bring-your-own-device policies and enterprise mobility, the day of the PC's demise is not here quite yet. Alain Monie, CEO of tech supply chain company Ingram Micro, told CNBC that PCs will retain a strong role in the corporate landscape for years to come, with Intel and Micron Technology recently observing stronger demand for their products. Monie explained that this boost in business is likely due to corporations needing to "refresh their fleets." Nonetheless, he noted that tablets have certainly grown in prominence over the past few years, indicating that PCs will be "less the center of the universe" and more of a complement for mobile technology.

Biggest IoT issues: Data loss and unauthorized access 
The Internet of Things refers to an increasingly connected world, where machines and devices that previously had no relation to the Internet and digital data now collect and transmit information. The IoT promises some pretty remarkable possibilities for consumers and companies alike, but it's not without its challenges. According to a recent study by Fortinet, homeowners are most concerned about data breaches with regard to their connected appliances. In addition to being "extremely concerned" about information exposure, data privacy, and trust came in as major considerations. Nevertheless, respondents said they were willing to pay more to their Internet service provider to enable a connected home.