Accenture: Perception of data security at odds with reality

by Editor 4/28/2010 6:51:00 PM

Nearly three-quarters of organizations believe they have adequate policies in place to protect sensitive, personal information, yet more than half have lost sensitive data within the past two years — and nearly 60 percent of those organizations acknowledge data loss as a recurring problem, according to findings of a global study released today by Accenture.

The study — which surveyed more than 5,500 business leaders and 15,500 adult consumers in 19 countries — reveals a startling difference between organizations’ intentions regarding data privacy and how they actually protect sensitive personal information, such as name, address, date of birth, race, National ID/social security number and medical history.  The study was conducted in conjunction with the Ponemon Institute, an independent privacy, protection and information security research firm.

“The volume of sensitive personal information being collected and shared by organizations has grown exponentially in recent years, making data protection a critical business issue and not just a technology concern,” said Alastair MacWillson, managing director of Accenture’s Security practice. “Our study underscores the importance of taking a comprehensive approach to data privacy and protection, one that closes the gaps between business strategy, risk management, compliance reporting and IT security.”

Global business findings

Fifty-eight (58) percent of business respondents have experienced at least one data security breach over the past two years, yet 73 percent said their organization has adequate policies to protect the personally identifiable information it maintains.

While 70 percent agreed that organizations have an obligation to take reasonable steps to secure consumers’ personal information, there are discrepancies in their commitments for doing so:

  • Forty-five (45) percent of respondents were unsure about or actively disagreed with granting customers the right to control the type of information that is collected about them.
  • Forty-seven (47) percent were unsure about or disagreed with customers having a right to control how this information is used.
  • Nearly half also did not believe it was important or very important to: limit the collection (47 percent) or sharing (46 percent) of sensitive personal customer information; protect consumer privacy rights (47 percent); prevent cross-border transfers of personal information to countries with inadequate privacy laws (47 percent); prevent cyber crimes against consumers (48 percent); or prevent data loss or theft (47 percent).

The study revealed that the biggest causes of data loss are internal — problems presumably well within an organization’s ability to detect and correct. For instance, business or system failure (57 percent) and employee negligence or errors (48 percent) were cited most often as the source of the breaches; cyber crime was cited as a cause of only 18 percent of security breaches.

While many organizations believe that complying with existing regulations is sufficient, it appears that compliance alone may not be enough to protect sensitive data.  For instance, 70 percent of respondents said they regularly monitor privacy and data protection regulatory compliance requirements, yet data breaches have occurred in 58 percent of organizations polled.

The study also identified significant differences in terms of attitudes and policies regarding data privacy and protection between organizations that had not experienced any data-security breach in the past two years and those that had.  Specifically, respondents in organizations that did not have a data-security breach:

  • were more likely to know where personal information on customers and employees resides within their organization’s IT enterprise (75 percent versus 66 percent); and
  • were more likely to feel an obligation to control who has access to personal data (72 percent versus 60 percent).

Global consumer findings

More than two-thirds (70 percent) of consumers surveyed around the world believe that privacy of their personal information is important or very important, yet 42 percent are skeptical that organizations are doing enough to adequately protect the personally identifiable information they have shared, revealing an overall lack of trust.

The study suggests that while consumers want to ‘own’ their personal information, they feel organizations have a responsibility for managing and protecting it.  For instance:

  • Fifty-three (53) percent of consumers said they believe they have the right to control how their personal information is used. The same percentage said they believe they have a right to access and review the data collected and used by organizations.
  • When asked who has the most responsibility for ensuring that information is adequately protected, 41 percent of consumer respondents said the government, 21 percent said companies, 19 percent said the individual, and 20 percent said it should be a shared effort.

 “The findings reinforce the critical role that data privacy plays in maintaining trust between organizations and their consumer and business customers,” said Bojana Bellamy, Accenture’s director of Data Privacy and vice president of the International Association of PrivacyProfessionals. “A proactive approach to data protection and privacy can not only help organizations avoid fines for non-compliance but, even more importantly, can help avoid breaches that can alienate customers and destroy brand credibility.”

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CSC employees help mentor next generation cyber experts at fifth Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition

by Editor 3/16/2010 7:34:00 PM

CSC will provide judges and support staff for teams competing in the 5th Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC), March 11-13, 2010. Pitting college students against hackers trying to disrupt and compromise their networks, the competition is unique in its focus on the operational aspects of managing and protecting an existing network infrastructure. Student teams are scored on their ability to detect and respond to outside threats, maintain availability of existing services (e.g., e-mail servers), respond to business requests (e.g., add user accounts), and balance security needs against business needs.

CSC will provide cyber subject matter experts as judges for the event to ensure team compliance with the rules and handle tasks such as scoring scripted business events during the competition. In addition, CSC employees will champion each of the five regional finalist teams during the pre-competition phase and observe and support their chosen team during the three-day event.

“CSC is dedicated to developing cutting-edge, long-term solutions to the evolving cyber threat environment, and an important component of these efforts is the development of next generation cybersecurity curricula and workforce,” said James Menendez, vice president of CSC’s Global Security Solutions. “We know that supporting the CCDC and all of the CyberWatch activities is one important way we can help pursue these goals for ourselves and our nation.”

CSC’s active participation as an industry member of our Advisory Board is a real help to the mission of CyberWatch. As a leading provider of cybersecurity services to government and industry, CSC’s commitment to the long-term development of a viable work force and their support of academic institutions are essential to the government’s ongoing ability to protect our national security,” said Dr. Robert J. Spear, director of the CyberWatch Center, which hosts the Mid-Atlantic event. “We’re thankful for all of the efforts of our Advisory Board members from industry, and especially for CSC’s contributions and leadership in this year’s CCDC. We wish all participants the best of luck for the upcoming competition.

Five winning teams from the preliminary regional competition, conducted remotely during January and February of this year, will participate in the Mid-Atlantic CCDC: Towson University, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Asheville-Buncombe Technical College, Community College of Baltimore County and Millersville University.

The winner of the Mid-Atlantic CCDC will move on to represent the region in the national CCDC, April 16-18, 2010, in San Antonio, Texas. For more information about the competition, visit www.midatlanticccdc.org.

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Capgemini receives SAP certifications

by Editor 2/8/2010 10:39:00 PM
Capgemini has been certified by SAP AG as a provider of solution implementation based on the Run SAP methodology. Capgemini will incorporate the methodology into its implementation standards.

Run SAP is a phased methodology based on world-class knowledge. It is designed to provide best-practice procedures, content, services, training and tools for end-to-end solution operations, along with a standardized and proven implementation method. The Run SAP methodology focuses on application management, business process operations, and administration of SAP solutions. The methodology describes how support should be implemented across the lifecycle design, set-up, operations and optimization. In addition, with its best-practice documents for solution operations, it describes how to implement end-to-end solution operations for different SAP software-based business processes.

Capgemini also has been certified by SAP AG as a global provider of application management services after recent audits in North America, India and Spain. The certification reinforces Capgemini’s new service line, Application Lifecycle Management, which the Group recently launched to help clients manage the entire lifecycle of applications from development to maintenance, including testing, implementation and optimization.
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Wipro receives Most Outstanding Alliance Partner of the Year Award in Asia-Pacific and Japan from HP

by Editor 1/12/2010 7:11:00 PM

Wipro Technologies, the global IT services business of Wipro Limited, announced that it has been awarded the Most Outstanding Alliance Partner of the Year Award from the Software and Solutions group at HP during HP’s annual Asia-Pacific & Japan Partners @World Cup, held recently in Guangzhou City, China.

The HP Software and Solutions Most Outstanding Alliance Partner of the Year award for Asia-Pacific and Japan recognizes one partner for its success in helping HP’s customers optimize the business outcomes of IT. Wipro has delivered strong performance in the Asia-Pacific and Japan region. Wipro’s delivery capability and close collaboration with HP has helped them bag the largest Quality Control software deal in Japan and the largest Software as a Service (SaaS) deal in the Asia-Pacific and Japan region.

This is the third time in the last five years that Wipro Technologies has been recognized by HP Software and Solutions.

Speaking on this occasion, Sr. Vice President and Global head for Wipro Testing services Gangadharaiah C.P said, “We are excited to receive this award from HP Software and Solutions for 2009. This award validates the fact that alliance with HP is successfully delivering collaborative innovation through best-of-breed solutions and addressing the evolving customer’s needs by positioning new SaaS Models in the Industry today.”

“Customers benefit from faster time to market as a result of the HP and Wipro combination,” said Brad Kern, vice president, Worldwide Alliances, Software and Solutions, HP. “Wipro’s vast number of trained testing services professionals combined with HP applications testing products helps deliver this advantage.”

Wipro and HP Software & Solutions are global partners for more than 5 years now. Wipro Testing Services has been working strategically with HP around its entire portfolio of Test Lifecycle Management Tools, which also includes developing new Solutions for Joint Go-To-Market and delivering enhanced customer value through newer business models like SaaS. HP’s testing tools have further strengthened Wipro’s Testing-As-A-Service (TaaS) offering.

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Wipro joins open handset alliance

by Editor 1/8/2010 3:59:00 PM

Wipro Technologies, the global IT services business of Wipro Limited, has joined the Open Handset Alliance, extending its device development and service Integration expertise around Android – an open mobile phone software stack.
 
The Open Handset Alliance (OHA) is a partnership of more than 60 global mobile industry leaders working together to accelerate innovation and offer consumers an enhanced mobile experience. Wipro will now enable its customers in conceptualizing and creating devices on the Android platform along with providing differentiating solutions and applications translating to faster time-to-market for the clients.

Wipro is currently engaged with a number of Handset Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), Telecom Carriers, Semiconductor companies, Consumer Electronics and Automotive companies on multiple Android based product developments. “Joining the Open Handset Alliance will help us turn around Android based products and solutions faster with rich feature-sets,” said Nagamani Murthy, Vice President of the Mobile, Automotive and Consumer Electronics Group, Wipro Technologies. “With most device vendors now releasing Android based phones, we foresee an impressive growth on this platform. The Open Handset Alliance membership will enable us to satisfy the strong customer demand,” she added.

Wipro has been focusing on developing differentiated applications on the Android platform along with testing frameworks. The IT major has had a strong Linux background augmented by robust in-house training and proof-of-concepts. These investments have enabled Wipro to help its customers in releasing Android based products in the market.

Wipro offers wide spectrum of mobile platform expertise ranging from development on industry standards and customer proprietary platforms, device engineering to Application/UI development expertise. Wipro works closely with leading mobile semiconductor players and has also supported many leading Tier 1 OEMs across the world in building complete phone software.

Wipro is the world’s largest third party product engineering services provider and was recently rated as the #1 R&D Service Provider globally by leading analyst firm, Zinnov based on an overall rating spanning across factors like financial strength, business models, innovation & expertise, people strength and operations.

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Watson Wyatt: Employers likely to continue improvements to HR technology in 2010

by Editor 12/29/2009 8:08:00 AM

As companies prepare for the economic recovery, many are poised to enter 2010 with renewed interest in improving their HR technology systems, processes and organizational structures, according to experts at Watson Wyatt, a leading global consulting firm.

“In the current economy, organizations will keep a watchful eye on their spending as they analyze their investments in HR technology,” said Steve Hitzeman, national leader for technology and administration solutions consulting at Watson Wyatt. “Employers are likely to continue or even increase their cost-savings initiatives by taking steps to globalize and streamline the HR function, scrutinize their vendor relationships and strengthen their service levels.” 

Watson Wyatt HR technology experts identify these emerging themes for 2010:

Scrutinizing vendor relationships and sourcing options. Employers with vendor contracts that are up for renewal will evaluate whether they have received optimal value from those relationships. For example, employers that aren’t satisfied with their HR business process outsourcing might decide whether to stay in their contracts next year, or revert to outsourcing to multiple vendors with specialized services.

“Rather than place all of their eggs in one basket, many companies will migrate to a blended, co-sourced service delivery model,” said Dan Vander Hey, senior technology consultant at Watson Wyatt.

As disenchantment with the time requirement and expense of platform hosting and technology upgrades grows, Watson Wyatt experts also expect many employers will continue to embrace software-as-a-service (SaaS) options. These options help reduce costs by providing access to software via an external provider.

Globalizing the HR function. A growing number of multinational organizations are expected to focus on standardizing their HR processes, organizational structure and systems, such as payroll, across borders. 

“In an increasingly global workplace, employers will be challenged to strike a balance between having consistent standards for their HR technology and processes across the different countries they operate in, while not losing sight of region-specific issues,” Hitzeman said.

Investing in a consumer-grade experience for workers. Companies will grow more comfortable with Web-based, consumer-oriented applications that convey HR information through interactive and self-service tools. Many will look to technology to boost employee collaboration and lower costs by expanding the use of social media or leveraging their portals.

“The recession spurred many employers to assess their technology capabilities and priorities,” said Hitzeman. “In the coming year, tight budgets and cautious spending will compel many companies to look for a strong business case that justifies taking action.”

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Atos Origin now certified in Run SAP Methodology

by Editor 12/22/2009 8:49:00 PM

Atos Origin, an international IT services company, has been certified by SAP AG as a provider of solution implementation based on the Run SAP methodology, the company said. Atos Origin is among the first Global SAP partners to be certified in the Run SAP methodology and will incorporate the methodology into its implementation standards.

“By adopting the Run SAP methodology into our own implementation standards, we are going beyond the vision of implementing the solutions required by our customers,” said Paul Bray, senior vice president and global head of SAP solutions at Atos Origin. “We are now providing our customers the proven methodology for managing their SAP applications through end-to-end solution operations standards. This will empower our customers to manage their SAP applications more efficiently and at a lower cost.”

Run SAP methodology is a phased methodology based on world-class knowledge. It provides best-practice procedures, content, services, training and tools for end-to-end solution operations, along with a standardized and proven implementation method. The Run SAP methodology focuses on application management, business process operations, and administration of SAP solutions. The methodology describes how support should be implemented across the lifecycle design, set-up, operations and optimization. In addition, with its best-practice documents for solution operations, it describes how to implement end-to-end solution operations for different SAP software-based business processes.

“We applaud Atos Origin’s achievement as a global SAP services partner certified in the Run SAP methodology,” said Dr. Uwe Hommel, executive vice president of Active Global Support at SAP AG. “By adopting the end-to-end solution operations standards provided by the Run SAP methodology, Atos Origin will deliver to its customers a higher level of effectiveness and efficiency.”

Run SAP is an integral part of SAP Enterprise Support services, a holistic support model designed to enable continuous improvement and successful solution operations at lower risk and cost.

SAP customers will realize the benefits of operating with the end-to-end standards. SAP standards for solution operations are a prerequisite for the continuous improvement of SAP solution operations. Not only do they enable automation, reducing the cost of operations, but also improved traceability and an audit trail, helping companies to achieve cost efficiency, quality assurance and compliance enablement.

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European IT Excellence Awards 2010 announced

by Editor 12/15/2009 2:30:00 AM

IT Europa announced today that it will stage the European IT Excellence Awards 2010 in London on 25 February 2010. The IT Excellence Awards have been designed to recognise and reward excellence in solutions provided by European IT and Telecoms Channels. The awards will bring together leading ISVs, Solution Providers and Systems Integrators from across Europe to demonstrate their ability to provide IT solutions for their customers.

The awards are split into three sections. The first set of awards are exclusively for Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) highlighting the crucial role that applications play in the development of customer solutions. The second set of awards recognise the vital role played by Value Added Resellers (VARs), Solution Providers and Systems Integrators in providing solutions for both the SME and Large Enterprise sectors. The third set of awards is for vendors and suppliers who best support channel partners in delivering excellence.

“With more than 80% of sales now going through some form of channel and the complexity of technology continuing to increase, recognition of the crucial role that channels play in the delivery of real solutions to end customers is probably overdue,” said Alan Norman, Managing Director of IT Europa. “The European IT Excellence Awards are the first pan-European awards to recognise excellence in the delivery of real solutions and are intended to encourage the development of partnerships between vendors and solution providers across the IT and Telecoms industries.”

IT Excellence Awards winners will be presented with their awards at the European IT Excellence Awards Dinner on 25 February 2010 at The Tower, a Guoman Hotel, London. The Awards Dinner has been timed to coincide with the European ISV Convention 2010 which is being staged at the same venue on the same day.

Organisations wishing to enter the European IT Excellence Awards or interested in sponsorship opportunities can find further information at www.iteawards.com . The closing date for entries is 16 January 2010. Further information about the European ISV Convention can be found at www.isvconvention.com

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Gauntlet down for IT sector

by Editor 12/4/2009 1:38:00 AM

Leading aid and development agency CARE International is looking for teams of intrepid colleagues from across the IT industry to take part in the third CARE 3 Peaks Challenge, on 12-13 June 2010.

The challenge will see teams from the sector tackling the three highest peaks in Scotland (Ben Nevis, 1,334m), England (Scafell Pike, 978m) and Wales (Snowdon, 1,085m) all in the target time of 24 hours.

In 2009, QA completed the challenge in the fastest time of 23 hours and 18 minutes, and the gauntlet is down for any team who thinks they can beat them! Better still, last years event raised £50,000 to support CAREs poverty-fighting work.

Head of CARE Challenge Neil Munro said, The funds raised by teams on previous challenges are already achieving fantastic things around the world. The IT sector is one of the most fun and enthusiastic sectors we work with. It would be wonderful to top last years fundraising total and were confident the IT sector is up to it!

The CARE 3 Peaks Challenge offers corporate teams a fantastic teambuilding and networking opportunity, with a well deserved dinner and awards following the challenge. Experienced CARE Challenge staff will be available from the day teams sign up, to offer advice and support with fundraising and training.

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Upcoming consulting career events

by Editor 4/30/2009 4:49:00 PM
consultant jobs
The Top-Consultant.com team is organising several career events over the next few months aimed at consultants who want to fast-track their careers and industry professionals considering a move into the consulting industry.

Bi-monthly workshops, How to Ace Your Case Study Interview, are designed to help job candidates who have not had much success with case study interviews in the past and find them to be a bit of a challenge, make sure they have the knowledge and confidence they need to improve their chances of landing the consulting job they want. 

The workshops will take place on Friday, July 17th at 4pm and Wednesday, August 12th at 6:30pm. For more information and to apply, visit Top-Consultant.com.

The Art of Selling Consulting Services, Top-Consultant’s most popular seminar ever, helps consultants win more business for their firms. The seminar has already attracted more than 800 consultants from such big firms as Capgemini, PwC, Deloitte, A.T. Kearney and SAP Consulting, so the Top-Consultant.com team has scheduled an additional date – July 10th – with the content tailored specifically around the theme of winning more clients in a recessionary market. To learn more about the event, click here.

Finally, there is the seminar titled “Revitalising Your Consulting Career – Securing a Career Move in Consulting in 2009.” This will be an evening event in Central London on Monday, June 29, followed by a series of conference calls. The seminar is aimed at consultants who want to make sure they have the greatest insights into where the job and career opportunities lie, how to get hired into these organisations and how to outshine other candidates at job interviews. For more information, visit Top-Consultant.com.

To browse and apply for the latest consulting jobs online, visit ConsultancyRoleFinder.com.

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