Tag Archive for: General

Jonathan’s Movember Journey – Let’s Talk Guys

JR's Movember Journey

As Movember draws to a close, I’ve been reflecting on the magnificent Mustache journey we’ve embarked upon. From the humble beginnings of a few bristles to a splendid ‘stache, it’s been a wild 30-day adventure, with my facial hair potentially rivalling that of some iconic figures. And speaking of partings, let’s not forget the other November challenge—No Nut November. Let’s just say, I’m rather excited about what December brings!

But let’s brush aside the humour for a moment. This hairy endeavour carries a weighty message. It’s perfectly fine to not be okay. The real issue is inaction. This Mustache, more than being a quirky accessory, symbolises the silent battles many of us face.

What A Year!

This year has been a whirlwind of changes for me. I took the leap into a new job, moved homes twice – first to a more modest abode and then finally settling in Sutton Courtney with my partner. It’s been a real change of scenery, from the familiar buzz of London to the charms of the countryside. My journey hasn’t been straightforward. After a decade in the British Army, transitioning to civilian life has been quite the challenge, filled with its own battles.

Jonathaan's Movember Journey

On the health front, it’s been a tough ride too. Dealing with H Pylori and diverticulitis brought its share of pain and disruptions, affecting not just my physical well-being but also my mental state. These experiences, however trying, have lent an even deeper meaning to this Movember.

I’ve come to understand profoundly that vulnerability is not a sign of weakness, but a hallmark of true strength. It’s about embracing self-love, prioritising self-care, and always being open to finding someone to talk to. Remember, my door (and ears) are always open for a chat, especially if you feel like you’re not being heard.

Planet IT Team

Part Of The Planet Tribe

Joining Planet IT in June, I found more than a team; I found a tribe. Your acceptance and warmth have made this place feel like home. It’s astonishing how time has flown, bringing us close to Christmas already. Our journey together has been remarkable, filled with meaningful conversations and shared moments. It’s in understanding our differences and celebrating our similarities that our bonds have strengthened.

A heartfelt thank you to each one of you for your unwavering support, kindness, and the invaluable time you’ve dedicated to listening. Together, we’ve not only grown Mustaches but also fostered an environment of open dialogue and mutual support.

As we bid farewell to our Mustaches (much to the relief of our partners, no doubt), let’s not lose sight of the significance of what we’ve achieved. Our hope is that this endeavour inspires others to speak out, take a step forward, and seek the help they might need.

A toast to all of you, my fellow Mo Bros and Mo Sistas. Let’s continue these conversations, with or without the Mustache, and remember the power of a positive mindset, the strength in vulnerability, and the impact of our collective support.

Planet Movember Team

 

Securing Tomorrow: Navigating Cybersecurity in 2024 (Amidst the Rise of Generative AI)

AI & Cybersecurity in 2024

As we plunge deeper into the digital era, the evolution of technology continues to shape the landscape of cybersecurity. 2023 has been a landmark year for the uptake and integration of Artificial Intelligence into our business, lives and technologies. However, now it’s time to look at cybersecurity in 2024

2024 will mark a significant milestone. The widespread adoption of generative AI technologies propelling us into uncharted territories. Not only are we learning about how to use these technologies and leverage them to make our business more effective and our work lives that little bit easier, but at the same time we are trying to understand how this technology should be legislated, managed and secured. While these advancements bring unprecedented opportunities, they also usher in new challenges. Especially with the escalating risks posed by malicious actors utilising AI to launch smarter, more efficient cyber-attacks. In this article, we delve into the future of cybersecurity and explore crucial measures businesses should undertake to fortify their defences against AI-driven threats.

2023 has been a year of seismic change in the IT landscape. Most of this initial change has been driven in part by the wave of generative AI products that have come to the market. Starting with the introduction of ChatGPT from OpenAI and then the race to get GenAI into every business and every consumer as quickly as possible. This is not the only change that has dramatically affected the market but it is the starting point from which most of the other shifts have occurred.

Because of this, when looking at what 2024 looks like, we need to consider these rapid changes. We can’t just look at today’s landscape. We need to consider what is the risks of the following 12 months are going to look like

The Proliferation of Generative AI:

Generative AI technologies, fuelled by machine learning algorithms, have demonstrated remarkable capabilities in various domains, from content creation to problem-solving. However, with great power comes great responsibility (“Ben Parker – Spiderman (just before he dies [SPOLIERS]”), and in the realm of cybersecurity, the advent of generative AI presents a double-edged sword. While businesses and individuals can leverage GenAI to increase their productivity, remove manual tasks or understand complex situations, Cybercriminals are increasingly leveraging these technologies to automate and enhance the sophistication of their attacks.

AI Cybersecurity event

AI-Driven Threats: A New Frontier:

The integration of generative AI in cyber attacks introduces a new level of complexity and efficiency. AI-driven threats can adapt in real-time, learning from defensive measures and continuously evolving to exploit vulnerabilities. From intelligent phishing schemes to adaptive malware, businesses now face a formidable adversary that can circumvent traditional security protocols with unprecedented agility. This enables bad actors to push RaaS (Ransomware as a Service) and enable less skilled individuals to trigger and deploy increasingly complex attacks on businesses with little to no knowledge of what the attack does or how it is written.

So how do we move forward? As a business what should you be doing to protect yourselves, your staff and your business from the wave of GenAI that isn’t hear to help you out? I have collated Five steps that I called the Business Imperatives for Cybersecurity in 2024:

Investing in AI-Powered Defence Systems:

To counter the rising tide of AI-driven threats, businesses must invest in cutting-edge, AI-powered defence systems. These systems should not only detect known patterns but also employ advanced machine learning algorithms to identify anomalous behaviour indicative of potential attacks. Your £10 a year subscription to a nearly free Antivirus or Antimalware platform is no longer enough, the companies who are not innovating in this space and failing behind and they are doing so quickly. In 2024, EDR/XDR – Endpoint Detection and Response or (X)Extended Detection and Response are now a minimum, for nearly all businesses from SME/SMB to Blue Chip a managed SoC (Security Operations Centre) or Managed Detection and Response (MDR) service is a must. The level of protection on your client devices has never been more important especially as the edge of the network dissolves and users and businesses embrace remote working.

Continuous Training and Skill Development

The human element remains crucial in the fight against cyber threats. Regular training and skill development programs are imperative to equip cybersecurity teams with the knowledge and expertise needed to combat evolving AI-driven attacks effectively.

When looking at what we do moving forward we have to start with the human aspect of protection “The Human Firewall” as I like to call it. Training your end users has and always will be the most critical line of defence a business has. Now I have said this before and I will undoubtedly say it again in one of these articles or at a keynote. If you fail to train your end users to not only use the technology in front of them or understand the risks they pose as users to the data and information security of the business you will undoubtedly risk a catastrophic failure. Users are the most risky part of your business, they move, they are forgetful and they tend to be overly sharing even when you have specifically told them not to be. What we will need to do as we step into 2024 is train end users to understand the risks of AI, what it does/doesn’t/can/cannot do with data.

Once they understand this you will need to wrap true security awareness training around this. The training will need to be broad but also deep to ensure that users do not fall into the trap of not knowing the breadth of the risks but also don’t end up receiving such high-level input they never really understand how deep that rabbit hole can go.

microsoft intune

Zero-Trust Security Architecture

Adopting a zero-trust security architecture is paramount in the age of AI-driven threats. Rather than relying solely on perimeter defences, businesses should implement robust identity verification, continuous monitoring, and strict access controls to mitigate the risk of unauthorized access. We need to build systems, services and business with Zero Trust at the core. When my team is asked to work on a solution for a customer or migration to the cloud, this is where we begin the days of trusting the perimeter of the network to defend us are gone. We need robust Zero Trust across every system, platform and service. If you don’t have Zero Trust you have too much trust!

Collaboration and Information Sharing

Cybersecurity is a collective effort, and businesses should actively participate in information sharing and collaborative initiatives. At Planet IT, I make this a core of what we do with regular information-sharing sessions, events and webinars (including this blog!). Building a strong network of industry peers and sharing threat intelligence can enhance the collective ability to thwart sophisticated AI-driven attacks. If you don’t know where to start with this reach out to [email protected] and we will get you connected with like-minded individuals across the UK and EMEA and help you build your network of peers.

Regulatory Compliance and Ethical AI Usage

Beyond technological solutions, fostering a cybersecurity culture within an organisation is paramount. Employees should be educated about the potential risks associated with AI-driven threats and encouraged to adopt best practices, such as vigilant email scrutiny, regular password updates, and reporting suspicious activities promptly. This starts from the first day they join your business and should be a continued journey throughout their time with you. The days of training once worrying later are gone. We must be keeping our staff as up-to-date as we are, bringing the business with you is the hardest part of the battle with AI and Cyber Security in 2024.

As we stand on the precipice of a future dominated by generative AI, the importance of robust cybersecurity measures cannot be overstated. Businesses must proactively adapt to the evolving threat landscape by embracing advanced technologies, fostering a cybersecurity-conscious culture, and collaborating with the broader industry. By doing so, they can not only defend against the rising tide of AI-driven threats in 2024 but also pave the way for a more secure digital future. Just remember, AI is Amazing but if you fail to understand it, properly protect it or secure it then it’s a disaster waiting to happen!

If you want to talk to one of our experts about how we can help you with your security and understanding of AI then please call 01235 433900 or you can email [email protected] or if you would like to speak to me directly you can reach out to me via DM or at [email protected].

AI & Cybersecurity in 2024

 

How to create and implement a cloud strategy

How to Create and Implement a Cloud Strategy

Cloud-based solutions are helping organisations achieve greater agility, efficiency, and innovation, and even increasing end-user satisfaction. That said, moving to the cloud is not always just as simple as clicking a few boxes and pressing go. It can be a drawn-out or complex process. Any cloud migration strategy requires careful planning and execution to ensure a successful outcome and avoid the typical major pitfalls. 

In this article, we will explain what your cloud strategy should include, why you need one, and how to create and implement one for your organisation.  

We will also share some tips and best practices from our experience as a Microsoft Solutions Partner specialising in Microsoft Azure, Microsoft 365 and cloud migration specialist. 

 

What is a cloud strategy? 

A cloud strategy is a concise viewpoint on the role of cloud computing in your organisation. It defines what you want to achieve with the cloud, how you will get there, and how you will measure your progress and results. 

A cloud strategy is different from a cloud implementation plan, which offers the “how” rather than the “what” and “why”. A cloud implementation plan details the specific steps, actions, and resources needed to execute your cloud strategy. 

You need a cloud strategy because it helps you: 

  • Align your cloud solutions with your business goals and user needs. 
  • Communicate your vision and direction to your stakeholders and partners. 
  • Identify and mitigate the potential challenges and risks of cloud adoption. 
  • Optimise your costs and benefits of using the cloud. 
  • Monitor and evaluate your performance and outcomes. 

Cloud Strategy

What if you don’t prepare for the cloud properly? 

Without a clear and coherent cloud strategy, you may end up with: 

  • A complex and expensive technology estate that does not meet your expectations or requirements. 
  • A lack of coordination and collaboration among your teams and departments 
  • A loss of control and visibility over your data and processes 
  • A reduced ability to respond to changing market conditions and customer demands. 

So, where do you start? 

If you have to ask that question, then you probably need a helping hand.  

Feel free to call one of our Cloud Specialist Architects to get the plan rolling. Call 01235 433900 or email [email protected] and ask about a Free Cloud Readiness Assessment.  

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