Mike Vizard

Mike Vizard has covered IT for more than 25 years, and has edited or contributed to a number of tech publications including InfoWorld, eWeek, CRN, Baseline, ComputerWorld, TMCNet, and Digital Review. He currently blogs for IT Business Edge and contributes to CIOinsight, The Channel Insider, Programmableweb and Slashdot. Mike blogs about emerging cloud technology for Intronis.
Find me on:

Recent Posts

Appreciating the realities of IT budgets in 2017

Posted by Mike Vizard on Oct 20, 2016 9:59:04 AM

Now that the fourth quarter is well underway, surveys tracking IT budget projections for 2017 are forecasting that IT spending next year will be anywhere from flat to up 2.9 percent.

In fact, Gartner is predicting that IT services spending will increase 4.8 percent in 2017 to reach a total of $943 billion. Total worldwide IT spending is forecasted to reach $3.5 trillion in 2017.

However, as comforting as those estimates may be to IT service providers, they may very well be beside the point.

Read More

Topics: IT Services Trends

Assessing TCO in the age of the cloud

Posted by Mike Vizard on Oct 18, 2016 10:03:00 AM

Historically, there has been a fierce debate over what type of cloud computing model is most efficient. Every provider of a public cloud service or private cloud software claims their model is the most cost effective.

Read More

Topics: Cloud Trends

Ransomware moves into the cloud

Posted by Mike Vizard on Oct 13, 2016 1:00:00 PM

One of the assumptions many people make about cloud services is that someone is responsible for maintaining security of the environment. That’s true as far as the service itself is concerned, but any data loaded onto those cloud services is still going to be subject to the same malware infections that IT organizations have to deal with on premise. When an end user loads a file that has been infected with, for example, ransomware, that malware travels with the file into the cloud.

In fact, a recent report from Netskope, a provider of cloud security software, finds that on average there are 26 pieces of malware found in cloud applications across an organization.

Read More

Topics: Ransomware

Navigating the IT endpoint security paradox

Posted by Mike Vizard on Oct 11, 2016 11:37:51 AM

One of the biggest challenges in modern IT security concerns what to do about endpoints. One school of thought suggests that anti-virus software as most organizations know it isn’t all that effective anymore. As such, this camp argues that more of the IT security budget should be shifting back to either defending the perimeter or encrypting data.

At the same time, thanks to the rise of more sophisticated social engineering attacks there’s more malware on endpoints than ever. A very strong case can also be made for proactively remediating vulnerabilities on endpoints as quickly as possible in order to prevent that malware from spreading laterally throughout the organization.

Regardless of where an organization lands on that endpoint security spectrum, one thing that is certain is not enough is being done to proactively manage endpoints.

Read More

Topics: IT Security

Hurricane Matthew to put disaster recovery plans to the test

Posted by Mike Vizard on Oct 6, 2016 9:48:26 AM

Thankfully natural disasters such as Hurricane Matthew don’t come along all that often. But when they do, there’s nothing quite like a hurricane to focus the IT mind on the potential impact this kind of storm can have on a business. It’s not so much the winds a hurricane creates that most organizations have trouble coping with as it is the amount of flooding that usually occurs and the almost inevitable loss of electrical power.

Starting today Hurricane Matthew is expected to slam into Florida and perhaps continue on up the coast as far as North Carolina before being pushed out to sea. That should limit the potential damage to a relatively narrow swath of the southeastern U.S.

Unfortunately, far too many businesses inside and outside that region still don’t have a particularly good disaster preparedness plan in place from an IT perspective. 

Read More

Topics: Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery

The budget help IT leaders want most from IT service providers

Posted by Mike Vizard on Oct 4, 2016 10:13:13 AM

When it comes to IT, seeing is always believing. The trouble is that most IT organizations don’t have the time or money needed to set up a proof-of-concept (PoC) to determine if the technology solution they're interested in actually works for them.

A new report from ZDnet suggests that the number of PoCs requested by IT organizations should be rising, though, as IT budget dollars appear poised to increase substantially in 2017. Buried deep in the report is data that both IT vendors and IT service providers should take to heart.

Read More

Topics: IT Services Trends

Time to get real with corporate boards about IT security

Posted by Mike Vizard on Sep 29, 2016 12:18:29 PM

As the number of regulations related to IT security continues to increase, the board of directors of most organizations has taken note of the fact that there’s significantly more financial liability pertaining to IT security.

In fact, a new survey 126 such boards conducted by Osterman Research on behalf of Bay Dynamics, a provider of cyber risk analytics tools, finds that 60 percent of the respondents say that cybersecurity mandates have become somewhat or very difficult to satisfy.

Read More

Topics: IT Security

Developers emerge as IT channel amplifiers

Posted by Mike Vizard on Sep 27, 2016 11:44:00 AM

In the past year or so, just about every provider of on-premise software has shifted their focus from traditional resellers to developers that invoke their software as a service using application programming interfaces (APIs).

For many traditional resellers that shift is perplexing. After all, software installed on premise usually costs thousands of dollars. In contrast, developers typically only want to part with a couple hundred dollars if the vendor is lucky. The difference is that there are thousands of developers, but there may only be hundreds of customers willing to fork over hundreds of thousands of dollars for an enterprise license.

Read More

Topics: IT Services Trends

Navigating the IT security divide

Posted by Mike Vizard on Sep 22, 2016 10:10:16 AM

One of the great paradoxes of IT security is that the people being protected by IT security technologies have more faith in them than the IT professionals that deploy and manage those technologies.

A recent survey of 1,110 senior executives conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit on behalf of VMware finds that 40 percent of IT executives expect a major attack on their organization to be successful within the next three years. In contrast, only 25 percent of the C-level executives felt the same way.

Read More

Topics: IT Security

Bare metal servers gain momentum in the cloud

Posted by Mike Vizard on Sep 20, 2016 9:53:05 AM

Bare metal servers are a growing niche of the public cloud space, and IT service providers should start paying more attention to it as the nature of the application workloads being deployed in the cloud continues to evolve.

Today, a bare metal server is most often used by a Big Data application or some other type of workload, such as gaming, where the performance penalties associated with virtual servers is just too high. The dominant provider of bare metal servers in the cloud is IBM, which acquired SoftLayer back in 2013. One of the major things that differentiated SoftLayer is that it provided support for both bare metal and virtual servers.

Read More

Topics: Cloud Trends

MSP Marketing Assessment
MSP Phishing Quiz
MSP State of the Industry Survey
Intronis Local Lunches