Two factor authentication is widely recommended as a security practice to give an extra layer of protection to your network and personal accounts, but according to security researchers, if you use SMS texts as your second form of authentication, they could be subject to interception and exploitation. Security researchers demonstrated how easily they were able to manipulate the two-factor set up on a Bitcoin wallet account, simply by intercepting the text message sent over the cellular network. Once they reset …

Cybersecurity journalist Brian Krebs noted on his website the security and simplicity of adding a vocal password to your authentication process when you call a company such as a bank or investment firm to obtain access about your account. Voice passwords are a great idea. They can be a very effective security measure if a hacker calls your bank to open a fraudulent account in your name or requests a large transfer out of your account. Most banks require only your …

Setting budgets has become a key weapon in the ongoing struggle of organizations to understand and control their cloud spend. Public cloud providers have responded by offering their users services such as budget alerts and server tagging. Users, however, still struggle to see the costs associated with the resources they’ve tagged. In this post, we’ll talk about the challenge of viewing your costs in Azure and how you can solve it. Azure offers a few different methods of grouping services: …

As the public cloud continues to explode in popularity, the problem of cloud sprawl, or cloud waste, also rises. Sprawl is nothing new, so why has it become a top concern for organizations? We’ll go through a brief history of sprawl, explain why it matters today, and discuss the correlation between cloud sprawl and shadow IT. Then we’ll give examples of sprawl you might find in your environment, and tell you how you can eliminate it to make your systems …

According to Rightscale, cost management is the No. 1 challenge for mature cloud users in 2017. That makes sense–after all, what’s the point of adopting hybrid cloud if it ends up being too cost prohibitive? Different from managing your bill, this post talks about how to manage your costs within public cloud, such as Microsoft Azure. So, why is public cloud so expensive? Well, on paper, paying pennies per minute sounds cheap, but costs quickly rise when you factor in every minute …

Sprawl has been the lingering problem in IT since the dawn of the client-server model. In the pre-cloud era, sprawl’s impact was only barely felt, as the ongoing cost of support for a workload was rarely as visible or scrutinized as the upfront cost of acquiring infrastructure to run that workload. In the age of private cloud, sprawl was an annoyance, but hardly a driver of noticeable operational cost. Until performance was impacted, sprawl was ignored. When a performance or capacity …

For organizations that use public cloud services, the biggest goal is to optimize the usage and spend of those services. It all comes back to cost management and control–it’s all too easy to lose control of your cloud spend, especially when you don’t know who is spinning up more servers or whether they’re being used in the most cost-effective way. CIOs are experimenting with server tagging as a way to overcome this challenge. What is server tagging? Essentially, it’s creating …

Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure are two of the biggest names in public cloud computing. Which one is right for you? To help you make that decision, let’s talk about what each provider brings to the public cloud table, and key differences between them. Compute power AWS: AWS EC2 users can configure their own VMs or choose pre-configured machine images, or customize MIs. Users choose size, power, memory capacity and number of VMs, and choose from different regions …

A recent Global CIO survey by Brocade found that 83 percent of CIOs believe procurement of cloud services without IT engagement will increase. This procurement, otherwise known as Shadow IT, continues to grow as organizations reach for a hybrid cloud solution. But even though hybrid cloud has been one cause of Shadow IT (among many), it can also be a solution. If you have Shadow IT within your organization (and most organizations do), then you technically already have a hybrid cloud solution—it’s just …

When it comes to cloud computing, the question enterprises now ask is, “Which cloud is best?” More than 80 percent of organizations are running workloads in the cloud, and the IT service industry has joined the fray with a variety of different cloud services and new buzzwords to represent them. What do they mean, and is there a difference between them? Let’s review: Cloud broker: A cloud broker is someone who acts as a kind of middleman between an organization interested in …

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