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Signal Alliance, Microsoft and Cisco to Deliver Azure Stack to the Enterprise

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Signal Alliance, Microsoft and Cisco have joined forces to deliver the Azure Stack solution, an innovative hybrid cloud computing solution designed to help organizations deliver their various services efficiently from their own data centers.

 

This is coming as businesses in Nigeria continue to find more effective ways to drive down their running costs, whilst improving profitability.

 

Speaking at the workshop, Uche Nwaukwa, Signal Alliance Azure Practice Lead said, “Azure Stack is an extension of Microsoft Azure, which brings the agility and fast-paced innovation of cloud computing to on-premises environments.”

 

The workshop had Kunle Oloruntimehin, Cisco Country General Manager; Wale Olokodana, Microsoft Business Lead, Cloud; Yinka Ntia, Signal Alliance Technology Director; Sophia Sankey, Microsoft Cross Industry Senior Territory Executive, in attendance.

 

Also present at the event were top business executives from selected organizations in the banking, insurance, telecoms, and oils & gas sectors.

 

Workshop participants were shown how Azure Stack can enable businesses and Government agencies leverage cloud capabilities and still maintain regulatory requirements around data residency, including Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) compliance.

 

Furthermore, there was a demonstration of how the solution serves as a hybrid cloud computing platform for edge and disconnected scenarios which address latency and connectivity issues, including simple and easy-to-use analytics.

 

While speaking on development, Sikiru Abass, Head of Platforms & Applications, Signal Alliance said it enables organizations to build modern applications across hybrid cloud environments, balancing the right amount of flexibility and control.

 

Moreover, with Azure Stack, developers can speed up new cloud application development by building on application components from the Azure Marketplace, including open source tools and technologies. With this consistent cloud platform, organizations can confidently make technology decisions based on business requirements, rather than business decisions based on technology complications.

 

Azure Stack is an integrated solution made up of software and hardware components. Microsoft owns the software, while Cisco and other approved vendors support with their proprietary hardware. Signal Alliance acts as the partner delivering the solution and providing support for user organizations in Nigeria.

 

 

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

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Publiseer to Deliver Digital Content to Over 3,000 Libraries with cloudLibrary

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Publiseer, Nigeria’s digital content distribution company, has been working hard on developing new features and partnerships based on the feedback it received so far this year.

 

In the spirit of the holidays, today, Publiseer announces that it will now deliver digital content to over 3,000 book libraries around the world, including the US, the UK, Canada, and Australia, thanks to cloudLibrary, a lending platform by Bibliotheca.

 

Bibliotheca has been a highly requested distribution channel from most of Publiseer’s authors, so Publiseer is really excited about this expansion of its distribution channel.

 

Two months ago, Publiseer announced that it will be taking its library distribution even deeper with its addition of Baker & Taylor as part of its library distribution service. Now, the distribution goes even deeper with the addition of cloudLibrary.

 

These new libraries to be added to Publiseer’s distribution channel have hundreds of thousands of eBooks and very engaged readers, and so this is an exciting opportunity for expanding the readership of its authors.

 

All books published by Publiseer will be automatically be distributed to cloudLibrary after December 20, 2018.

 

“The upcoming holidays might delay the regular distribution process. However, we’re working harder to expedite the distribution process”, said Chidi Nwaogu, Publiseer’s chief executive officer, who was recently invited to The Future Leaders Forum 2018 by The Future Awards Africa in partnership with the University of Sussex.

 

The cloudLibrary platform offers royalties based on their standard library model and “Pay Per Use” (PPU) option.

 

With the standard library model, the library purchases a single copy of an author’s book to lend out.

 

As a book is purchased for lending Publiseer provides a higher library price, which is three times higher than the original list price of the book at other bookstores like Amazon. Of course, the royalty of the author will be paid out after this higher price.

 

With the PPU option, a check-out of an author’s book by a patron triggers a sale. The price of a check-out is 30% of the book’s original list price.

 

For Publiseer’s authors who use the Premium Distribution Option, they get to keep all the royalties they earn from Bibliotheca.

 

Publiseer is a digital publisher that lets writers and musicians from low-income communities in Africa publish, promote, protect, and monetize their digital contents across hundreds of partner stores worldwide, at no charge, with just a single click.

 

Publiseer has been described by Konbini as “one of the largest digital publishers in Africa”.

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BBBS, Barac Partner on Enterprise Fraud & Cybersecurity Solutions

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In a bid to provide real time monitoring and detecting of enterprise fraud and cyber-attacks, Best of Breed Business Solutions (BBBS) has partnered Barac in providing Barac solution to Nigerian Banks and telcos.

Omar Yaacoubi, chief executive officer and co-founder, Barac, said at an event to unveil the solution to Nigerian banks in Lagos that Barac is real time feasibility solution that helps organisations detect threats, fraud and cyber-attacks in real time and with high accuracy across different channels.

“What is unique is that we have seen worldwide that fraud and cybersecurity have become more convergence, where more people in an organisations are stealing data from their organisations to commit fraud, so, cybersecurity, fraud, internal threat, internal monitoring of attacks, internal threat are becoming more and more common.

“At Barac we help solve both problems because fraud is used by cyber attackers or by people inside to get the data, so both of them are very important and both of them need to be covered by one solution.

“Our solution uses artificial intelligent or machine learning and behavioural analytics. Machine learning is going to the data base to understand how the fraud is and how the problem behaves and how do we get to this fraud amount, the date and different information around that.

“This is combine with behavioural analytic which is more about the person, how do this person behave on different channels how do the user or customer behave so you can understand and detect any abnormal behaviour of the user or customer. That is where we are unique in combining both approaches to give very high accuracy,” he added.

He identified some of the existing challenges that Nigerian Banks are facing in tackling fraud and cyber-attacks which is slow adapting solutions to changes in the behaviour of hackers.

“There are a number of things banks need to do, first is innovative solutions that can adapt to hackers behaviour, sometimes they change their behaviour so the solutions the banks use needs to change their behaviour as well.

“With the current solutions that they have especially with the rule base solutions, banks will not be able to do that because it takes up to six to nine months to change the rules where you have to modify rules, it is very complex this is where solutions with behavioural analytic and machine learning will help to solve the problem.

“Secondly, is opening those silos that the banks have where the transactions system works alone, CRM system works alone, core banking solution will work alone, all those system are unique and will work alone on their own, so, that is where they need solution that communicate.

“They need solution that have holistic view, the solution that can detect attacks across the whole channels that they have, especially as they move into cloud and adding new capabilities and opening their networks to new features like USSD, Fintech companies that have access to the banking data,” he said.

According to Ethelbert Mbama, chief executive officer, Best of Breed Business Solution, “We understand the challenges in Nigeria today with Digital Transformations, engagement in multi channels, opening up platforms with Third Parties and Partners, Reactive mode instead of Proactive mode, Preventive instead of Reactive, Data explosion and most importantly, the changing patterns of Fraudsters as well as the role of Internal employees in conjunction with external fraudsters.

“We have x-rayed major patterns and use cases Fraudsters have been using, like Sim Card Swap, opening multiple accounts in Banks with same picture, linking of debit cards to accounts, disabling of internal applications settings of customers and tampering with internal applications.

We understand the issue of Data quality which generates thousands of false positives that is time wasting in investigations. We equally understand the high cost associated with investments in Fraud and Cyber Security in organizations especially around Infrastructure and multiple Security solutions to handle different kinds of security issues.

“We understand the silo nature of multiple solutions that do not talk to each other, none availability of 360 degrees view of the entire security monitoring and analysis, and huge cost associated in Annual maintenance, upgrades, etc of different applications used to secure the organization.”

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Researchers Identify First Threats in a Post-phishing World

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Researchers at XM Cyber have uncovered a new means of carrying out e-mail attacks without the user or cyber security teams knowing. Attackers convert the user’s account into a tool to invade the network and cause ongoing damage.

XM Cyber, an APT (advanced penetration testing) simulation platform provider, refers to these as ‘the first threats of a post-phishing world’.

Igal Gofman, head of security research for XM Cyber, says he is always looking for new ways to simulate advanced lateral movement, sophisticated Active Directory escalation, persistence, and exfiltration.

“A recent area of focus has been on defeating network and domain boundaries by moving laterally within the network, with a focus on pivoting from unsecured networks to isolated secure networks.”

The team simulated how a skilled adversary can easily pivot a compromised network by abusing commonly used email applications. “Many email clients are built right into modern operating systems and can potentially help facilitate lateral movement,” he explained.

Post exploitation techniques

The techniques he describes are considered as post-exploitation, which means the user account has been breached and the adversary has full control over the user’s workstation.

“In many cases, adversaries use compromised account credentials to access employees’ emails in order to change their bank account information, sometimes adding a malicious Outlook rule to prevent the user from receiving alerts regarding a deposit or withdraw change. There are many account breach vectors, including phishing and password spraying.”

He says CX Cyber has seen adversaries abusing cloud synchronisation options to sync malicious metadata such as email rules back to the user’s workstation. Other techniques that were recently discovered by Black Hills penetration testers involve syncing Outlook Web Add-Ins to the user workstations. Those attacks are relatively easy to initiate and can be performed from the cloud.

According to Gofman, by performing a phishing campaign, the attacker can gain system access to a user’s workstation and can control the installed mail client and all related communication. Instead of targeting users outside the organisation by sending phishing emails or using cloud services to sync malicious metadata, the cyber criminal can control all communication.

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