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DELL SURVEY SHOWS ORGANISATIONS LACK AWARENESS AND PREPARATION FOR NEW EUROPEAN UNION GENERAL DATA PROTECTION REGULATION (GDPR)

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Dell Survey Shows Organisations Lack Awareness and Preparation for New European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
  • More than 80 percent of global respondents know few details or nothing about GDPR
  • Less than one in three companies feel they are prepared for GDPR today
  • 97 percent of companies don’t have a plan to be ready for GDPR
  • Only nine percent of IT and business professionals are confident they will be fully ready for GDPR

Dell today announced results of a global survey on the European Union’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), revealing that organisations ‒ both SMBs and large enterprises ‒ lack general awareness of the requirements of the new regulation, how to prepare for it, and the impact of non-compliance on data security and business outcomes.

Designed to strengthen protection of personal data for all EU citizens, the new regulation goes into effect in May 2018 and affects companies of all sizes, in all regions, and in all industries. Those not fully compliant when GDPR goes into effect risk significant fines, potential breaches and loss of reputation.

Survey results show that 82 percent of global IT and business professionals responsible for data security at both SMBs and enterprises are concerned with GDPR compliance. Although the majority of global IT and business professionals express compliance concerns, respondents lack general awareness of GDPR, and they are neither prepared for it now, nor expect to be when it goes into effect.

  • More than 80  percent of respondents say they know few details or nothing about GDPR
  • Less than one in three companies feel they are prepared for GDPR today
  • Close to 70 percent of IT and business professionals say they are not nor don’t know if their company is prepared for GDPR today, and only three percent of these respondents have a plan for readiness
  • Respondents in Germany feel most prepared for GDPR (44 percent), while respondents in Benelux (Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg) feel least prepared (26 percent)
  • More than 75 percent of respondents outside Europe say they are not or don’t know if they are prepared for GDPR
  • Nearly all companies (97 percent) don’t have a plan in place when GDPR kicks off in 2018

Results further show that while organisations realise failure to comply with GDPR will impact both data security and business outcomes, they are unclear on the extent of change required, or the severity of penalties for non-compliance and how changes will affect the business. Seventy nine percent say they would not, or were not aware whether their organisation would face penalties in its approach to data privacy if GDPR had been in effect this past year.

  • Of the 21 percent of respondents who said they would face a penalty if GDPR were in place today, 36 percent think it would require only an easy remediation, or don’t know the penalty
  • Close to 50 percent believe they would face a moderate financial penalty or manageable remediation work
  • Nearly 25 percent expect significant changes in current data security practices and technologies

Additional findings show that most organisations don’t feel well-prepared across security disciplines for GDPR compliance.

  • Less than half of respondents feel well-prepared for any of the security disciplines impacting GDPR
  • Only 21 percent feel well-prepared for access governance, a key security discipline for GDPR
  • More than 60 percent of enterprise respondents in Europe either are not or don’t know if they are prepared for GDPR. Nearly 70 percent of SMB respondents in this region said they are not or don’t know if they are prepared for GDPR
  • More than 90 percent of respondents say their existing practices will not satisfy the new GDPR requirements
  • More than 80 percent said they are well- or somewhat prepared with their organisations’ current email security technologies
  • Nearly 60 percent said they are well- or somewhat prepared with their organisations’ current access governance technologies
  • More than 80 percent said they are well- or somewhat prepared with their access management technologies
  • 65 percent said they are well- or somewhat prepared with their next generation firewall (NGFW) technologies

Best practices help successfully address GDPR requirements and avoid the consequences of non-compliance

  • Hire a data protection officer (DPO). A requirement for GDPR, the position can be full-time, or filled by an employee with other responsibilities or an outsourced agency. The good news is that a designated DPO can be used as a service, so some system integrators or resellers could offer this as a service to grow their businesses.
  • Deploy a firm access governance solution. The ability to govern access to applications that permit access to EU citizens’ personal data ‒ particularly unstructured data ‒ is a major factor in data security and GDPR compliance. Governance generally requires periodic review of access rights by line-of-business managers and attestation (or recertification) that the permissions align with their job roles and do not compromise data security. The One Identity family of Identity and Access Management solutions provides this level of visibility and control.
  • Control access management. To satisfy GDPR, employees and contractors must have the correct access permission to do their jobs and nothing more. The right identity and access management technologies that facilitate this level of control include multi-factor authentication, secure remote access, risk-based/adaptive security, granular password management, and full control over privileged user credentials and activity.
  • Protect the perimeter. Deploy next-generation firewalls to reduce the network’s exposure to cyber threats, mitigate the risk of data leaks that could lead to a data breach resulting in stiff penalties assessed under GDPR, and deliver the forensic insight required to prove compliance and execute appropriate remediation following a breach. The Dell SonicWALL next-generation firewalls protect against emerging threats and feature deep packet inspection; real-time decryption and inspection of SSL sessions; adaptive, multi-engine sandboxing; and full control and visualisation of applications.
  • Facilitate secure mobile access. Foster the secure flow of covered data while enabling employees to access the corporate applications and data they need in the way they prefer, and with the devices they choose. Enhance data security (while removing access obstructions) by combining identity components, device variables and temporal factors (time, location, etc.) to deliver an adaptive, risk-based approach that ensures the right access all the time, every time, while concurrently improving data protection and GDPR compliance. 
  • Ensure email security. To fulfill GDPR requirements, achieve full control and visibility over email activity to mitigate the threat of phishing and other email-based attacks on protected information, while enabling the secure and compliant exchange of sensitive and confidential data. 

Methodology

In the survey, conducted by Dimensional Research, 821 IT and business professionals responsible for data privacy at companies with European customers responded to questions about awareness, perception and readiness for GDPR, and the expected impact of non-compliance when GDPR comes into force in May 2018. The survey was conducted across the United States, Canada, Asia Pacific (Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, India), United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, Belgium, The Netherlands, France, Italy, Spain and Poland. Business executives at organisations with fewer than 100 employees also completed the survey.

Business

Online retailers to accelerate growth plans to combat the COVID-19 crisis

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Online retailers to accelerate growth plans to combat the COVID-19 crisis 1

New Paysafe study reveals that despite the impact of COVID-19, businesses are still innovating to maintain plans for future growth

Three quarters (75%) of online UK businesses are experiencing a negative impact on their business due to COVID-19 and even in the long term, the number that say the pandemic will have a negative effect on them (45%) outweighs those that believe it will have a positive impact on their business (31%). That’s according to new research out today from specialist payments platform Paysafe as part of its ‘Lost in Transaction’ report series, in which 1,100 small to medium sized businesses (SMBs) globally which operate online were asked about the effects of COVID-19 on their business. 

However, despite the negative forecasting, overall more businesses remain optimistic about opportunities as a result of changes to their business model following the pandemic. 30% of businesses have seen an increase in profit margin (versus 26% which saw a decrease), 36% have seen an uptick in customers (versus 27% which saw a decline), and just over a quarter (26%) believe they are better positioned to enter new geographical markets, as opposed to 20% which say they aren’t.

Businesses have had no choice but to welcome change with over a third (36%) suggesting that COVID-19 has increased their ability to innovate. Around 84% of organisations have had to alter their operations to appeal to a broader target market with adapting digital strategies forming a core part of this. Of the businesses that made changes, 78% specifically diversified their payment offerings and as a direct result, 66% saw an increase in sales.

The importance of a seamless online checkout has been reinforced with the introduction of new consumer payment preferences. Some 37% of online brands have already integrated at least one new payment method into the checkout whereas 55% plan to introduce at least one more in the near future. With an increase in the variety of different payment methods used by consumers since the outbreak of COVID-19 — 37% of businesses have noticed an increase in the percentage of consumers using digital wallets and 20% have observed customers using crypto more often —  over half of businesses (57%) now view their payment offerings as a priority.

As with all shifts, consumers are also thinking differently about how they make payments and what they use them for. Over a quarter of businesses surveyed (32%) think consumers are using new methods to track their spending more accurately, while 27% believe consumers are re-evaluating the role technology plays in their lives. As people are becoming more familiar with digital payments, according to businesses almost a third (29%) of consumers are valuing a more seamless experience online.

Paulette Rowe, CEO, Integrated and E-commerce Solutions, Paysafe Group, comments: “The shift to online has forced retailers to take a fresh look at the checkout experience and assess whether it is user friendly as well as secure. Though many SMBs believe the future is less than positive, there is still hope, as we have seen that some of the simplest innovations can spark growth. Now that customers are more willing to use different payment methods there is an opportunity to innovate at the checkout. Creating a seamless digital experience will help eCommerce services appeal to all generations and give businesses that all-important competitive edge.”

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Online networking is crucial to the future of small business growth

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Online networking is crucial to the future of small business growth 2

By Trudy Simmons, business and clarity coach

We have all had to find a lot of new ways of being effective and efficient to continue to grow our businesses in this “new normal” we find ourselves in. As a business coach and organiser of networking events, I have watched businesses embrace some new ways of working and fight against others. Some businesses have claimed: “this won’t work” and said: “I will wait for things to get back to normal,” while others have jumped at the chance to embrace new practices in their working lives.

We must accept, we are where we are right now in this point in time, and business growth waits for no-one, so we must work with what we have, rather than waiting, wishing and wanting for what was.

It would seem that many smaller businesses have been able to adapt quickly. Across my networks, businesses have changed direction or launched new products or provided services to new markets, all while working from home, attending online meetings, speaking to clients and for some, dealing with home-schooling.

One of the ways I have seen smaller businesses change their practices, is in networking.

Networking with other businesses and potential clients is a pivotal part of having a small business. Before the pandemic lockdown, the typical networking activity would be face-to-face events or meetings. There was some networking on social media platforms, but this would tend to focus on transactional activity rather than a conversation.

However, that has completely changed and now networking includes being active in communities on many more social media platforms other than Facebook or LinkedIn as well holding events and conferences on platforms such as Zoom.

Very quickly, I changed all my in-person networking events, to being online, when lockdown took hold. Thankfully, I was already using the right software and already had an engaged audience that didn’t want to go back to feeling isolated. So, the change didn’t take much to achieve, however it took a lot to convince people that the experience of online networking would be as good.

Many were frustrated with not being able to go to a different location and many felt they would not receive the same empathy or support from people in an on-screen meeting as opposed to a face-to face meeting. This is understandable.

We have all had to make decisions in the last few months that we never thought we would need to, and this is a mental health decision, as much as a business decision.

Why do I say that?  In the networking that I arrange, we make sure to have fun whilst meeting old friends, new friends and talking about our businesses. Why is this an important part of where we are right now?  Most of us in small businesses are sat at home behind a computer working incredibly hard and it can feel isolating and like no one else understands. When you take yourself out of your comfort zone and meet new people, it is a safe environment to engage with people who want to hear from you.

The many benefits of online networking should not be ignored. Here are five reasons to shift and include online networking into your week or month.

  1. Meeting new people – in a room of people (in-person), we tend to gravitate towards people that we already know. In an online networking event you might meet people that you don’t know. This has been one of the biggest pieces of feedback that I have been hearing; that people are loving meeting people they may not have otherwise met. Networking is a chance to take yourself out of your comfort zone and meet and talk to new people in a safe environment.
  2. Business growth – time and location will often limit business owners from attending in-person networking events. There are hundreds of online networking events which will not take up as much time – you never know who will be there, or who they might know that needs your services or products. Turn up, show up and be ready to talk about what you do. This will lead to more opportunities for business growth.
  3. Mind expansion – one of the challenges of running your own business is becoming stuck in a rut or feeling directionless. This happens to us all at some point. Online networking can shift your mindset and help you to take that next step. Sometimes, it is someone else’s throw-away comment that can be just the thing that you need to hear.
  4. New relationships – building business relationships takes time, but networking allows you to start on an even playing field with other attendees and one step ahead of people who aren’t doing it. Use this starting point to build trust with new people.
  5. Why not? – With the current situation we all find ourselves in, why not give online networking a go? Businesses have very little to lose in trying it. There are so many opportunities to find a group that works for you. Take those opportunities, approach it with a growth mindset and a willingness to try something different and see what happens. As with anything, you get out what you put in – come prepared to talk and be heard.
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Reconnecting the retail brain: learning from the octopus

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Reconnecting the retail brain: learning from the octopus 3

By John Malpass, Retail Consultancy Practice Lead at Teradata

An octopus has nine brains: one for each tentacle and plus one at the centre. Each tentacle can react super-fast to local stimuli to grab opportunity, hide or defend itself and the wider body. Many of these reactions are instinctive. But the central brain is essential, monitoring and analysing information from across the organism, and taking crucial decisions that ensure survival.  It controls the whole body, makes strategic decisions, and ensures coordinated action by all the tentacles. The octopus’ seemingly miraculous speed, shape-shifting and camouflage capabilities, controlled by its central brain, are themselves a useful analogy for the future of retail.

Retailers need to adopt a similar approach leveraging enterprise-wide data and analytics not only to react fast at the edge, sensing and responding to changing customer behaviours and local market dynamics in each individual store, whilst also constantly informing strategic and future-focused decision-making.

As we’ve seen, for too many retailers brain and body have become separate, with data informing discrete projects and engagements but not used to transform entire business processes. Disconnects, friction and manual interventions in processes have all been highlighted in the current crisis, but they have been slowing things down and constraining value delivery for decades. To survive, the retailer of the future will have to become agile and able to respond to rapid and constant change. Just like the octopus, some responses will be automated; analytically enabled, managed and executed, while the central brain co-ordinates activities, thinks ahead, constantly learning and adapting to its environment.

The octopus has evolved over millions of years to develop and adapt its highly sensitive response capability. Retailers have had a few weeks to discover the benefits of a similar approach. Siloed solutions and manual processes cannot cope with the speed and scale needed to survive. As many will have experienced over the last few weeks, simply reporting what has happened can involve huge effort for little reward. Data is an asset, but it must be leveraged to deliver business advantage if it is to be valued. In later blogs I’ll demonstrate how data adds value to specific functions within retail, but for now I’ll share one example of how data can transform a process to create value on the shop floor.

In store bakeries are popular with customers, driving traffic, sales and margin and larger customer baskets. But margin can quickly disappear if too many or too few croissants are baked. One major supermarket, with over 400 in-store bakeries, found it had over 400 different ways of deciding how many items to bake during the day! To reduce waste and increase availability the retailer’s ‘central brain’ built a predictive model using data collected from across the organisation. Running the algorithm for each bakery with local, real-time data on current trading conditions automatically calculates exactly how many croissants bakers should make in each store and when to bake them.  This one algorithm has delivered over 10% in additional sales.

This is the sort of transformation that retailers must embrace – not only knowing what customers in each store want but acting on that knowledge by innovating a way to better meet their needs. Growth-orientated retailers tell us they have three strategic priorities: a hyper-personalised, frictionless  customer experience across all channels; more relevant localised and personalised Customer value propositions; and agile, cost efficient operations that respond to the demands of the modern digital economy. All demand reliable, trusted and real-time data at every point. The retailer of the future will run more than 50 million queries per day. That scale of data: every product in every store, every customer through every channel, 24/7, 365 days a year, means that automation is the only way to act at the speed needed to compete.

Automating the routine, while managing exceptions and alerts, creates time and space for more strategic analysis so retailers can switch from firefighting to scenario planning and simulation. This literal mind-shift opens the door to more strategic and forward-looking analytics and the use of big data to create new added value activities. Using data to define tomorrow’s opportunities and strategise the best next steps will build an agile business capable of responding to the demands of the modern digital market.

The global pandemic has been a harsh wake-up call for many in retail. Creaking systems, siloed and hard to reach data, and intensive manual processes have all been strained to breaking point. Those that were already set up and using enterprise-wide analytics will have fared better, but even those who have not taken the first steps should now see the urgent need to use data to transform their businesses. Luckily, evolution in retail does not need millions of years, and in the next few weeks I’ll outline how individual roles and functions can rapidly use data to change the way they do business. And you don’t need nine brains to do it.

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