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Downtime impact worsening as industry fails to curb outages

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The digital infrastructure sector is struggling to achieve a measurable reduction in outage rates and severity, and the financial consequences and overall disruption from outages are steadily increasing.

This is according to the Uptime Institute, which has released the findings of its 2022 annual Outage Analysis report.

Andy Lawrence, founding member and executive director, Uptime Institute Intelligence, said: “Digital infrastructure operators are still struggling to meet the high standards that customers expect and service level agreements demand – despite improving technologies and the industry’s strong investment in resiliency and downtime prevention.

“The lack of improvement in overall outage rates is partly the result of the immensity of recent investment in digital infrastructure, and all the associated complexity that operators face as they transition to hybrid, distributed architectures,” said Lawrence. “In time, both the technology and operational practices will improve, but at present, outages remain a top concern for customers, investors, and regulators. Operators will be best able to meet the challenge with rigorous staff training and operational procedures to mitigate the human error behind many of these failures.”

Uptime’s annual outage analysis is unique in the industry, and draws on multiple surveys, information supplied by Uptime Institute members and partners, and its database of publicly reported outages.

Key findings include:

• High outage rates haven’t changed significantly. One in five organizations report experiencing a “serious” or “severe” outage (involving significant financial losses, reputational damage, compliance breaches and in some severe cases, loss of life) in the past three years, marking a slight upward trend in the prevalence of major outages. According to Uptime’s 2022 Data Center Resiliency Survey, 80% of data center managers and operators have experienced some type of outage in the past three years – a marginal increase over the norm, which has fluctuated between 70% and 80%.
• The proportion of outages costing over $100,000 has soared in recent years. Over 60% of failures result in at least $100,000 in total losses, up substantially from 39% in 2019. The share of outages that cost upwards of $1 million increased from 11% to 15% over that same period.
• Power-related problems continue to dog data center operators. Power-related outages account for 43% of outages that are classified as significant (causing downtime and financial loss). The single biggest cause of power incidents is uninterruptible power supply (UPS) failures.
• Networking issues are causing a large portion of IT outages. According to Uptime’s 2022 Data Center Resiliency Survey, networking-related problems have been the single biggest cause of all IT service downtime incidents – regardless of severity – over the past three years. Outages attributed to software, network and systems issues are on the rise due to complexities from the increasing use of cloud technologies, software-defined architectures and hybrid, distributed architectures.
• The overwhelming majority of human error-related outages involve ignored or inadequate procedures. Nearly 40% of organizations have suffered a major outage caused by human error over the past three years. Of these incidents, 85% stem from staff failing to follow procedures or from flaws in the processes and procedures themselves.
• External IT providers cause most major public outages. The more workloads that are outsourced to external providers, the more these operators account for high-profile, public outages. Third-party, commercial IT operators (including cloud, hosting, colocation, telecommunication providers, etc.) account for 63% of all publicly reported outages that Uptime has tracked since 2016. In 2021, commercial operators caused 70% of all outages.
• Prolonged downtime is becoming more common in publicly reported outages. The gap between the beginning of a major public outage and full recovery has stretched significantly over the last five years. Nearly 30% of these outages in 2021 lasted more than 24 hours, a disturbing increase from just 8% in 2017.
• Public outage trends suggest there will be at least 20 serious, high-profile IT outages worldwide each year. Of the 108 publicly reported outages in 2021, 27 were serious or severe. This ratio has been fairly consistent since the Uptime Intelligence team began cataloguing major outages in 2016, indicating that roughly one-fourth of publicly recorded outages each year are likely to be serious or severe.

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Daasity builds ELT+ for Commerce on the Snowflake Data Cloud

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Modular data platform Daasity has launched ELT+ for Commerce, Powered by Snowflake.

It is thought ELT+ for Commerce will benefit customers by enabling consumer brands selling via eCommerce, Amazon, retail, and/or wholesale to implement a full or partial data and analytics stack. 

Dan LeBlanc, Daasity co-founder and CEO, said: “Brands using Daasity and Snowflake can rapidly implement a customisable data stack that benefits from Snowflake’s dynamic workload scaling and Secure Data Sharing features.

“Additionally, customers can leverage Daasity features such as the Test Warehouse, which enables merchants to create a duplicate warehouse in one click and test code in a non-production environment. Our goal is to make brands, particularly those at the enterprise level, truly data-driven organisations.”

Building its solution on Snowflake has allowed Daasity to leverage Snowflake’s single, integrated platform to help joint customers extract, load, transform, analyse, and operationalise their data. With Daasity, brands only need one platform that includes Snowflake to manage their entire data environment.

Scott Schilling, senior director of global partner development at Snowflake, said: “Daasity’s ELT+ for Commerce, Powered by Snowflake, will offer our joint customers a way to build a single source of truth around their data, which is transformative for businesses pursuing innovation.

“As Snowflake continues to make strides in mobilising the world’s data, partners like Daasity give our customers flexibility around how they build data solutions and leverage data across the organisation.” 

Daasity enables omnichannel consumer brands to be data-driven. Built by analysts and engineers, the Daasity platform supports the varied data architecture, analytics, and reporting needs of consumer brands selling via eCommerce, Amazon, retail, and wholesale. Using Daasity, teams across the organisation get a centralised and normalised view of all their data, regardless of the tools in their tech stack and how their future data needs may change. 

ELT stands for Extract, Load, Transform, meaning customers can extract data from various sources, load the data into Snowflake, and transform the data into actions that marketers can pursue. For more information about Daasity, our 60+ integrations, and how the platform drives more profitable growth for 1600+ brands, visit us at Daasity.com.

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4 Activities that Automakers Can Digitize Now

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4 Activities that Automakers Can Digitize Now

Digital automaking is supported by technology-driven trends, consumer needs and new developments in artificial intelligence.

Manufacturing, procurement of raw materials, marketing and sales are factors involved in this change.

Digital automaking is a process that combines simulation, three-dimensional visualizations, analytics and several tool partnerships to make automotive manufacturing easier. Since the automotive industry has been undergoing a digital transformation primarily driven by intelligent mobility, it has encouraged the market to adopt new technology and software for modern vehicles. There has also been a growing need to increase industrial processes’ sustainability, environmental friendliness and adaptability. All of this has made automotive digitalization extremely important.

Automotive digitization helps to keep precise control over business operations, which is made possible using modern technologies like ML (machine learning) and AI (artificial intelligence) to improve short- and long-term performance. 

Automotive digitization has also increased the capacity to monitor each component of the supply chain while lowering costs and risks. Digital automaking can offer automotive solutions in terms of better design, time efficiency, and many other industry solutions.

4 Activities that Can Be Digitized by Automakers Now

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1. Manufacturing

Customers desire tailored goods, but they don’t want to pay more than they would for items that are mass-produced. As a result, manufacturing must be more adaptable than ever, leading to mass customization. Thus, the design, fabrication, use and maintenance of products are changing as a result of the digitalization of manufacturing. It is also changing the operations, procedures and energy footprint of supply chains and more. Digital manufacturing enables firms to provide additional options that are tailored to individual customers. Businesses can better understand supply-chain challenges, including inventory levels, delivery status and demand cycles, thanks to digital manufacturing. 

The factories of the future will move from automation to autonomy, strengthening real-time communication between equipment, physical systems, and people. These factories are referred to as smart factories. The most notable advantages of a smart factory are its shop floor connectivity, advanced robotics, flexible automation, augmented and virtual reality systems, and efficient energy management. The general manufacturing sector’s global standards are established by the automotive industry.

Over the past two decades, the automotive sector has expanded tremendously. However, the main elements that will affect whether digitalization is successfully implemented are the significance of realizing a return on investment (RoI) and the willingness of employees at both the top-most and lowest levels of an organization.

2. Supply Chain

By removing the functional barriers that divide different areas, the digitization of the supply chain is a cross-functional process that spans the entire lifecycle of a vehicle or product and involves all company divisions. It allows for an ecosystem that connects all stakeholders, from raw material and component suppliers to logistics companies, dealers and customers.

Utilizing digital technology throughout the entire supply chain allows for real-time monitoring of all supply-chain stages, be it either procurement of raw materials or finished products ready to be delivered or purchased. The evaluation and management of each event’s impacts on the supply chain can help the automation of procedures and the avoidance of potential interruption.

3. Design

Design plays a significant role in the automotive industry. By digitizing design activity, design professionals can test multiple hypotheses before proceeding with the design phase. Digitalization in the designing of products has been enabled by a digital model known as Digital Twins, which represents tangible assets in 3D. Digital twins mirror the complete car or one of its components’ appearance and behavior. With great assistance from sophisticated software, businesses can collect information about configuration, sensors, inspection data, and other details to improve the product’s design.

Automobile manufacturers are among the many industrial firms that recognize digital twins’ possibilities and the potential it has to bring in the best in the business of automobiles. The design and production processes are simplified by 3D representations, improving vehicle performance and cutting costs for the manufacturers. The twin technology is quickly rising to the top of the list of software solutions used in contemporary auto manufacturing, with applications ranging from car design to predictive maintenance to boosting sales using digitally generated models.

4. Marketing

Any marketing strategy aims to tailor the right message to the right set of audiences at the right time. A marketing campaign that appeals to a 45-year-old countryside man might not affect a 23-year-old lady residing in an urban area. Therefore, the impact of marketing combined with the effectiveness of Artificial Intelligence (AI) can be the biggest boon to any business. The automotive industry can enormously benefit in how they market their brand/product by adding the power of artificial intelligence to their current data. It can lead to a strong possibility of purchasing your products early in the sales process, possibly before customers even begin looking for their new car, which is indicated by specific online activities. 

As a result of recent advancements in third-party cookies and mobile advertising identifiers, AI can now assist brands in finding new prospects much more quickly by utilizing data to identify customers with similar characteristics and behaviors. This strategy can potentially increase your prospective customer base and give you an advantage over your competitors. You can identify high-priority targets by identifying the demographic categories that overlap. These solutions don’t require cookies and are more likely to comply with escalating privacy requirements because they rely on behaviors rather than personal data.

The automotive sector has modified its strategy and is now embracing digitization. Digital transformation in the automotive industry still has a lot of gaps to be addressed, but the trend toward digitization is a sign that the stakeholders in the automotive sector will be properly supplied with digital solutions in the coming days. With intelligent technology, and operations across the entire company and all departments, including manufacturing, supply chain, marketing, and sales, digital automaking will help the automotive industry to flourish in this digital era. An increasingly digital supply chain will also dismantle established barriers and greatly enhance communication. Undoubtedly, businesses must adopt a more significant digital transformation to be ready in this competitive automotive industry.

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The 10 Worst Cybersecurity Strategies You Need To Know

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The 10 Worst Cybersecurity Strategies You Need To Know

Employees should be trained on basic cybersecurity practices and the dangers of phishing scams.

Granting too many privileges to user accounts can lead to security breaches. Failing to update software on time can leave vulnerabilities open to attacks. 

Organizations should have a disaster recovery plan in place to ensure quick recovery in the event of a cyberattack.

Counting down to the absolutely worst cybersecurity strategies. 

Sadly, these are all prevalent in the industry. Many organizations have failed spectacularly simply because they chose to follow a long-term path that leads to disaster. You know who you are…

Let’s count them down.  

10. Cyber-Insurance

No need for security, just get insurance. Transferring risk is better than mitigating it!

Famous Last Words: Sure, it should be covered

9. Audit Confidence

Conducting a comprehensive security audit. …and ignoring the results

Famous Last Words: We will close those gaps later…

8. Best Tools, Left Unmanaged

Deploying several good tools, set to autopilot. No need to manage or maintain anything 

Famous Last Words: Security is not that difficult…

7. Regulatory Compliance

Meeting the minimum requirements (defined 2 years ago)

Famous Last Words: Relax, we are compliant!

6. One Good Tool

We just need one good tool (ex. AV) and we are set. 

Famous Last Words: That should do it.

5. IT Dependence  

Cybersecurity is a tech problem, it’s IT’s responsibility. 

Famous Last Words: The IT dept has it covered.

4. Security by Marketing  

Believing the snake-oil (deceptive marketing) salesperson that will ‘solve‘ your security problems

Famous Last Words: We are totally protected now! (or similar derivative from the sales brochure)

3. Default Security Settings  

Products and services come with security built in! 

Famous Last Words: It’s new, shiny, and looks secure. Don’t worry, we should be fine!

2. Security by Obscurity

Nobody knows or cares about us. We are too small to be targeted.

Famous Last Words: We haven’t been attacked yet…

1. Hope, as a Strategy

I hope we don’t get attacked. Let’s move on with more important things.

Famous Last Words: <meek inner voice>> Just don’t think about security because it is too scary, expensive, and complex!

 

This is the menu that evokes anger, frustration, and pity among cybersecurity professionals around the globe. Eventually it always ends in despair, blame, and a side of tears.

A solid long-term strategic plan is a necessity for an efficient and capable cybersecurity capability. Cybersecurity fails without a proper strategy. 

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