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The Internet of Everything: New Job Roles, New Education Required

We have entered the world of the Internet of Everything (IoE)—a world that brings people, data, processes and things together into a vast web of connectivity. From wearable devices that monitor our vital statistics to household appliances that anticipate our needs to smart cars that detect traffic jams and automatically re-route our journeys, the IoE represents an increasingly digital and mobile world that promises to improve our lives.

Twenty-five billion devices will be connected by next year, and that number will grow to 50 billion by 2020. All of this new data that the IoE generates will change the job landscape forever. For example, it will create 600,000 more manufacturing jobs alone in the U.S. to automate and analyze supply chain data over the network. This data will of course need to be analyzed, resulting in 300,000 new data analyst jobs to bring intelligent decisions to big data.

These are exciting developments with unprecedented potential, but the rapidly expanding IoE requires specialized skill sets that don’t yet exist, resulting in a critical talent gap. Read More »

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Security Compliance is Necessary for Real-Time Mobile Data Access

August 21, 2014 at 9:00 am PST

As a business or technical leader, you know you need to protect your company in a rapidly evolving mobile ecosystem. However, threats are not always obvious. As malware and attacks become more sophisticated over time, business decision makers must work with technical decision makers to navigate security threats in a mobile world.

This blog series, authored by Kathy Trahan, explores the topic of enterprise mobility security from a situational level and provides insight into what leaders can do now to mitigate risk. To read the first post focused on securing device freedom, click here. The second post, available here, focused on the risks that come with mobile connections. Kathy’s third post explored how to secure mobile data. – Bret Hartman, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Cisco’s Security Technology Group

In today’s mobile and cloud-centric landscape, the ability for employees to access data, account information, real-time statistics, and other pertinent information on their personal devices is what it takes to remain competitive in the business marketplace.

And while the rush has been on to empower employees to be able to connect from anywhere, security concerns are topping the “must address” list of enterprises everywhere.

One key concern is the increasing use of mobile devices to access relevant business information. In fact, according to the Cisco Connected World International Mobile Security survey, 63% of users downloaded sensitive data on such devices.

So, in a scenario where a team of sales representatives are updating account profiles by accessing data on their personal devices, IT and business leaders must ask: How secure is the network the team is using to access sensitive company information? Is it possible malware on their mobile devices can gain entry from a public or private cloud to compromise or steal data? Should mobile security policies prohibit certain employees from downloading certain information when they are off-site?

These questions must be answered. Especially since over the next four years, there will be nearly 21 billion networked devices and connections globally. Business Decision Makers (BDMs) and Technical Decision Makers (TDMs), must team up and determine the best mobile security policies that balance productivity and security of sensitive data, notably understanding security threats and establishing access requirements.
Read More »

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Partners, Distributors and Cisco fundamentally have the same goals: Generate more revenue, expand expertise and gain new customers.

Cisco Distributors grow when their partners grow; simple as that.

There are more than 170 Cisco distributors worldwide that do more than just pick, pack and ship. Each distributor offers an abundance of services and expertise – from technical support, to certification training, to marketing services. Many have solution demo centers, financing options and extensive training on Cisco products and services.

All of these services are designed to grow partner revenue and profit. That isn’t just talk. A distributor is only as healthy and as profitable as its partners. Distributors have a vested interest in the growth and success of their partner customers.

In fact, Julie Hens, VP of Worldwide Distribution Sales says, “Our worldwide distribution partners represent a strategic route to market for Cisco and we focus diligently on fostering a business model that creates positive forces on the distributor’s economics.  In turn, our distributors benefit our partners’ success and profitability by providing services and programs, and serving as a trusted business advisor.  It really is a win-win-win scenario.”

So what does this mean for you as a partner organization? How can you get engaged with Cisco distributors and quickly gain the training and expertise needed to sell Cisco data center, collaboration, networking and other solutions you may not have had access to in the past? What does it mean in terms of your growth prospects in both revenue and margin?

Using very prescriptive methods, Cisco distributors create programs for partners that are designed to accelerate sales and technical knowledge. These proven methodologies help expand and grow your Cisco business practice, which lead to new routes to revenue and profit. These programs offer partners access to resources to help take advantage of a rapidly changing environment in the marketplace and new opportunities that come with it.  Avnet Propel, Comstor EDGE, Ingram Fly Higher and Tech Data Momentum are examples of success in this area: Read More »

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Cisco 2014 Midyear Security Report: Brush Your Teeth, Change Your Passwords, Update Your Software

Listening to the radio on the way to work recently, I heard that hackers had stolen some 1.2 billion usernames and passwords, affecting as many as 420,000 websites. When asked what listeners could do to protect themselves, the security expert speaking recommended changing passwords.

He did not mention which ones. Indeed, the names of the compromised sites have not even been publicly named for fear of making the problem worse, so there is no way of knowing how to prioritize which passwords to change. Adding to my irritation, I had just changed several passwords in the wake of the Heartbleed/OpenSSL compromise a few months ago. Perhaps like you, I have more than 100 passwords. Changing them all is not really an option. Read More »

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#EngineersUnplugged S6|Ep5: Fast Track 4.0 Solutions

August 20, 2014 at 9:55 pm PST

In this week’s episode of Engineers Unplugged, David Hartman and Tim Cerling discuss Fast Track 4.0 Solutions, which promote fast and efficient deployment of private clouds with Cisco, EMC, and Microsoft solutions.

How many engineers does it take to straighten a whiteboard? (Answer: 5) Behind the scenes on #EngineersUnplugged

How many engineers does it take to straighten a whiteboard? (Answer: 5) Behind the scenes on #EngineersUnplugged

If you would like to become Internet Famous, and strut your unicorn talents, join us for our next filming session at VMworld 2014. Tweet me for details!

This is Engineers Unplugged, where technologists talk to each other the way they know best, with a whiteboard. The rules are simple:

  1. Episodes will publish weekly (or as close to it as we can manage)
  2. Subscribe to the podcast here: engineersunplugged.com
  3. Follow the #engineersunplugged conversation on Twitter
  4. Submit ideas for episodes or volunteer to appear by Tweeting to @CommsNinja
  5. Practice drawing unicorns

Join the behind the scenes by liking Engineers Unplugged on Facebook.

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