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May 4, 2020

Hardware News


LG Gram 17 (2020) Review: A Lightweight Productivity Machine with a Big Screen

Despite its tall 17-inch display, the LG Gram 17 is incredibly light and comes with a long battery life. The Gram laptops are also available in 13- and 15-inch sizes as well as a 14-inch two-in-one. Prices start at $1,500.



KIOXIA Innovates a Software-Enabled Flash-Drive Controller

In a first, a member of the former Toshiba group introduces flash drives managed by software, something that could never be done with hard-disk drives. KIOXIA America (formerly Toshiba Memory America) announced what it calls Software-Enabled Flash (SEF), a new technology that adds software flexibility, host control and flash-native semantics into a flash-native API and purpose-built controller for flash drives.



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Software Updates


Obsidian Security Lets Security Teams Monitor Zoom Usage

Using Obsidian, Zoom customers have enterprise-level monitoring, detection, and response capabilities from a security, compliance, and risk perspective, according to the company. Obsidian offers a complimentary, no-obligation two-week trial.



Microsoft Office 365: This New Feature Will Help Keep You Safe from Malware-Filled Documents

Protection based on Windows Defender Application Guard (WDAG) is expanding from Microsoft's Edge browsers to include Word, Excel and PowerPoint. The company states that "the fact that Application Guard can allow you to contain any threat from the Internet in essentially a shrunk-down version of the Azure hypervisor is incredibly valuable."



Microsegmentation Product Snapshots: Edgewise Networks, VMware and ShieldX Networks

Interest in microsegmentation is growing rapidly. Vendors are stepping forward to help organizations update their infrastructure security to prevent catastrophic intrusions and data thefts. This article looks at 3 microsegmentation market players, showing what they offer, how they work and the ways they differ.



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Cash Has Increased in Prominence as a Security

This article states that "as a security and bearer of value, cash has increased in significance because it's perceived by the man on the street to be a haven." It also claims that there has been an increase in demand for cash from FIs all over the world because consumers are looking to get their hands on cash.



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Wireless World


Contactless Comes of Age: How Biometrics Is Taking Cards to the next Level

Card payments dominate nearly half of all global payments, with almost 1 in 5 payments being made with a contactless card. The author argues that biometric authentication offers an additional layer of security to contactless card payments that can empower the financial world to completely remove the payment cap – bringing an end to remembering PIN codes and physically interacting with PIN pads altogether.



Guardsquare ThreatCast: Protecting Mobile Apps Against Suspicious Activities and Malicious Users

Guardsquare announced the launch of ThreatCast, a cloud-based mobile application threat intelligence expansion to its platform. Guardsquare ThreatCast collects and visualizes detected threats in mobile applications protected by Guardsquare’s products, DexGuard or iXGuard, helping shield against static and dynamic analysis and attacks with multiple layers of protection.



Contactless Payments Are Paying off for Consumer Health

According to data from Verisk Financial, contactless transactions in the United States are estimated to increase 256% in 2020, growing to an estimated 4.9 billion transactions. Verisk estimates this will almost double by 2021. And these projections were made before the pandemic, so the real acceleration in contactless payments could be enormous.



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Security Section


NSA Security Guide: How to Choose Safe Conferencing and Collaboration Tools

The US National Security Agency (NSA) recently published a security assessment of today's most popular video conferencing, text chatting, and collaboration tools. The document provides 8 questions to ask prospective vendors.



Coronavirus-Themed Malware Intensifies Across the World

As the pandemic has spread and intensified around the world so too have the malware campaigns that take advantage of it. Through virus-themed phishing emails, phony websites, and malicious apps, attackers have had no qualms about exploiting the pandemic.



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Technology and Marketing


How to Choose KPIs for Your Digital Marketing Strategies

The author is convinced that the key to choosing KPIs is to contextualize them with your business. You must match them not only to your goals, but also to a host of other factors, such as your strengths and weaknesses and the life stage of your business. He provides some tips that will help you craft KPIs that are robust and effective in monitoring your digital marketing strategy’s progress.



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Online Banking/E-Commerce/Website Design


Assessing the Risks of ACH Payments

With $43 trillion moving across the network each year, ACH payments are a viable option for businesses looking to move money without a hefty price tag. While the rate of fraud for ACH payments is relatively low, there is always a risk of bad actors whenever money is moving. This article offers some recommendations for assessing the risks involved in ACH payments.



ACI’s Credit and Debit Card Management Capabilities Provide Payment Flexibility

ACI Worldwide is delivering FIs a series of card management features within its ACI Issuer product as part of its COVID-19 rapid response program. ACI Issuer provides a series of capabilities — Installment Pay Option, Payments Holiday, Credit Card Expiry Bypass and Virtual Cards — to enable FIs to respond more quickly to market demands and regulations.



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Internet Access


Google Makes Meet Video Conferencing Free to All Users, Challenging Zoom

Google said any user will soon be able to host free video conferences on Meet, turning its previously business-only tool into a bigger rival to Zoom and others battling for users during the coronavirus outbreak. The company gradually will open Meet in the coming weeks, and users can sign up at https://landing.google.com/googlemeet to know when their account gains access.



How to Minimize the Risks of Split Tunnel VPNs

Split tunnel virtual private networks have some advantages for supporting remote workers connecting to a Windows network, but they come with risks. This article covers some ways to best protect your network.



Mozilla Ranks Video Call Apps by Security and Privacy Features

Mozilla researchers tested 15 apps against Mozilla's Minimum Security Standards, which say that apps must use encryption, provide automatic security updates, require strong passwords, manage security vulnerabilities using tools like bug bounty programs as well as clear points of contact for reporting vulnerabilities, and have clear privacy policies. Zoom, Google Hangouts, Apple Facetime, Skype, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Jitsi Meet, Signal, Microsoft Teams, BlueJeans, GoTo Meeting, and Cisco WebEx all met the minimum standards.



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Call Centers


How Contact Centers Can Make WFH Sustainable

Not all individuals have the desire or are suited to work in a remote environment. When hiring agents to work in a remote environment, an organization must be able to identify candidates who can succeed in a remote environment and set their expectations properly. This article covers some steps for transitioning the new hire process, along with steps for transitioning the training process and supervisor coaching/feedback model for remote agents.



Consumers Want Human Customer Service

As more and more companies turn to chatbots and computerized customer service platforms during the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers have become increasingly fed up with the growing disappearance of a company's human touches, according to a new survey from business applications and outsourcing company CGS. 44% of those surveyed said they wanted companies to be more open about easy ways to get in touch with a human.



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