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.
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Recent Posts

Cloud security concerns drive IT organizations into the arms of MSPs

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 19, 2016 9:52:28 AM

Given the rate of growth of public cloud services, it’s hard to argue that security concerns are an impediment to adoption. Nevertheless, it’s also clear that cloud security is still a major issue inside most IT organizations.

A new survey of 2,200 IT security professionals, which was conducted by CloudPassage and LinkedIn and released this week, drives this point home. A full 53 percent cite security as a barrier to cloud adoption, followed by compliance (42 percent) and data loss and leakage (40 percent).

Those results might not come as a surprise to most IT service providers, but the way that those organizations intend to solve those problems just might. 

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Topics: IT Security

Cloud professional services market to reach $65B by 2020

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 17, 2016 9:34:27 AM

Thanks to the rise of cloud computing in all its forms, Technology Business Research Inc. (TBR) is now forecasting that the size of the cloud professional services market will grow to $65 billion by 2020.

At the moment, Gartner predicts that the public cloud computing market will be worth $204 billion by the end of this year alone. TBR, meanwhile, says a smaller private cloud hosting market will grow to $43 billion by 2020. But perhaps most interesting of all to IT services providers is the TBR suggestion that the size of the hybrid cloud computing market has doubled since 2013.

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Topics: IT Services Trends

Next round of cloud battles to make all others look like a skirmish

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 12, 2016 9:56:25 AM

cloud_battles.jpgWhen public cloud computing first started to gain momentum, a wave of players jumped into the fray that arguably fell into two camps. On the one side there were IT infrastructure players such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, and Google. On the other side there were the carriers lead by Verizon and AT&T. Fast forward to today, and it’s clear that in terms of dominating the public cloud the infrastructure camp has pretty much thrashed the carriers.

As a result, the carriers these days are putting more emphasis on connecting private clouds to public ones using their networks. Carriers have also been more successful leveraging their traditional hosting capabilities to be a force to be reckoned with. Case in point is Desutsche Telecom, which a new report from Technology Business Research (TBR) identified as the top cloud carrier provider, followed by NTT Communications.

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Topics: Cloud Trends

Networking vendors and OPNFV face off in the NFV race

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 10, 2016 10:17:23 AM

NFV_race.jpgAs far as managed service providers are concerned, the most transformative technology under development today is network function virtualization (NFV) software, which replaces traditional networking appliances that are complex to manage with software.

But when it comes to NFV software, much of the same debate that is happening around software-defined networks (SDN) is playing out over the definition of the word "open." On the one side, Cisco and a handful of other networking vendors are betting that NFVs will run mainly on top of proprietary architectures such as the Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) framework.

At the other end of the spectrum, there is the OPNFV project, an open source project lead by the Linux Foundation that counts 165 software developers among its core base. 

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Topics: IT Services Trends

Class action lawsuit against Wendy's to fuel point-of-sale upgrades

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 5, 2016 12:00:00 PM

With mixed success, the Smart Card Alliance—a consortium of credit card issuers—has been badgering retailers into upgrading their point-of-sale (PoS) systems in order to support smart cards, which incorporate a processor designed to cut down on the number of fraudulent transactions being generated using older credit cards that relied on magnetic strips.

Many retailers, however, balked at adding support for these chip-enabled cards because of the cost of upgrading the PoS systems. The Smart Card Alliance warned retailers that banks would hold them liable for any fraudulent transactions that occurred after the October deadline. Now that shoe has finally dropped in the form of a class action lawsuit being opened against the fast-food chain Wendy’s by First Choice Credit Union.

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Topics: IT Security

EU to require organizations to appoint data protection officers

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 3, 2016 11:03:12 AM

data_protection_officers.jpgWhile it may be popular to decry regulations these days, IT service providers that specialize in data protection will soon have a lot to be grateful for as governments such as the European Union move to implement much stricter privacy requirements.

As part of a wave of regulations that will go into effect in the next two years, the European Union has decreed that any organization doing business in Europe must have a designated Data Protection Officer (DPO). These DPOs are to be appointed based on “professional qualities and, in particular, expert knowledge of data protection law and practices and ability to fulfill its tasks.”

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Topics: IT Services Trends

Ransomware exposes poor data management hygiene

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 28, 2016 9:00:23 AM

Ransomware-3.jpgAs ransomware attacks continue to proliferate, the soft underbelly of IT — how organizations often manage their data in a cavalier manner — is finally being exposed.

Ransomware combines social engineering techniques, malware, and encryption to take an organization’s data hostage. As this scourge continues, digital criminals are getting more sophisticated about selecting their victims. For a while, they focused on hospitals, which have lots of sensitive data they need to be able to readily access. Now it’s become apparent that police departments are also favorite targets for much the same reason.

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Topics: Ransomware

Tapping into managed security services remains a challenge

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 26, 2016 9:02:40 AM

Managed_Security_Services.jpgThanks to a rash of high-profile security breaches, awareness of IT security issues has never been higher. However, securing an IT environment gets more complex with each passing day.  Given those two factors, demand for managed security services should be escalating.

But a new survey from CompTIA suggests that solution providers across the channel are not tapping into that opportunity. In fact, the survey finds that only one in 10 of those surveyed are leading with their own security services brand rather than the brand of the security vendor. That doesn’t mean that channel partners are not offering security services. For example, a full 67 percent report offering risk management services, and another 61 percent say they have a mobile security service.

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Topics: IT Security

The FBI wants to see your malware

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 21, 2016 9:46:52 AM

FBI_malware.jpgThe Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) would like IT services providers and their customers to share their malware with them. As part of its ongoing efforts to combat cybercriminals, the FBI has developed a massive database of malware that it uses to identify and keep track of the individuals and organizations that create malware.

Speaking at a DatacenterDynamics Enterprise conference in New York this week, Timothy O’Brien, a supervisory special agent for the FBI who leads a task force dedicated to combating cyberespionage, says the FBI now has six different task forces in place to help combat various types of cybercrime.

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Topics: Malware

Microsoft Azure gaining ground on AWS

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 19, 2016 8:59:15 AM

Microsoft_Azure.jpgTwo separate new surveys suggest that while Amazon Web Services (AWS) remains the dominant public cloud platform the Microsoft Azure cloud platform appears to be gaining ground rapidly.

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Topics: Cloud Trends

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