In the news: 5 tech news stories worth another look

Pete Roythorne

Cybersecurity threats are coming from all angles, at all times, making it a complicated issue for many businesses. What’s the best defense strategy?

Educating employees is still the answer.

“Everyone in your organization has a role to play. That includes the employees that you have, that may or may not have a security or IT job function, and the employees that you need,” Randi Parker, CompTIA’s director of public policy and public advocacy said during a recent cybersecurity panel presentation.

comptiaIf you think that’s fairly obvious, think again. A recent CompTIA-commissioned survey of 1,200 full-time workers throughout the US revealed that nearly half (45%) receive no cybersecurity training by their employers.

Making matters worse is that the lack of training comes at a time when research from several tech associations, including CompTIA, “shows that human error is the leading contributor to security breaches.”

“Early investment into employee training can really mitigate many of the security challenges companies face,” Parker said.

Common sense is still an excellent defense. Take your staff to school.

And if you want to know who to create an effective security awareness training program, check out this blog by Davey Winder.

So, what else made this round-up? Read on:

The heat is on
Where are cybersecurity pros needed most? Employers, job seekers and policy makers will have their answer around this time next year.

Network World reported that the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is “funding the creation of a heat map visualization tool” designed to identify where US cybersecurity jobs exist.

“Some 230,000 cybersecurity jobs are open across the US, according to the Department of Commerce, and the number of openings has roughly doubled over the past four or five years,” the article says.

This doesn’t sound like your traditional multi-colored heat map, either.

“It will slice and dice job postings by job titles, skills and more, and help workers figure out which degrees or certifications they really need to be in the running for jobs.”

Balancing act
CIOs around the world struggle to strike an important balance, according to a new study by Deloitte.

According to the “2015 Global CIO Survey: Creating Legacy,” innovation and growth are top business priorities. However, just 16% of IT budgets are devoted to those areas.

“In addition, only 15% of global tech leaders are investing in emerging technologies that would contribute to innovation and growth,” Deloitte’s press release says.

Overall, CIOs at organizations of all sizes share five priorities that impact business:

  • Performance – 48%
  • Innovation – 45%
  • Customers – 45%
  • Cost – 45%
  • Growth – 44%

“The C-suite is now, more than ever, looking at the CIO as a leader who is prepared to drive global business priorities through both scalable technology solutions and smart investments,” Deloitte partner Kevin Walsh said.

Cook’s comments
Does Apple plan to merge the MacBook and iPad? CEO Tim Cook provided the answer.

“We feel strongly that customers are not really looking for a converged Mac and iPad,” Cook said in an interview with

Cook’s denial came one week after his comments to The Daily Telegraph seemed to imply PCs had entered their dying days.

“We don’t regard PCs and Macs to be the same,” Cook clarified.

Despite fewer differences than ever between the MacBook and iPad, he doesn’t see those products as the same, either.

“So we want to make the best tablet in the world and the best Mac in the world,” he said. “And putting those two together would not achieve either. You’d begin to compromise in different ways.”

Another major milestone
Back in August, you may recall Facebook celebrated a significant “first” when it attracted 1 billion users in a single day.

The planet’s largest social network was at it again earlier this month. It cracked 1.5 billion monthly active users for the first time.

According to, “Facebook announced the figure with its earnings results for the third quarter, which came in better than expected. Revenue was $4.5 billion, up 41% from a year earlier, the company said, while net profit was $896 million, up 11%.”

Facebook surpassed 1 billion monthly active users in September 2012, meaning it added an addition half-billion new users in just three years.

“For comparison,” the article says, “Twitter currently has about 320 million monthly users.”