Live Cyber Attack Threat Map

This “Check Point” [or “ThreatCloud”] cyber attack map is mesmerizing. It is a live cyber or hack attack map containing oodles of attack lines that follow live, currently in progress cyber attacks. The threat map lists the time, the attack name [or virus or hack type], the source and the intended victim location: the target.

The attacks are unrelenting and endless and the lines are ongoing in this dynamic situation.

One take away I have is that every country in the world can be a cyber target. Likewise, attack sources seem to come form almost anywhere in the world, although ‘botnets’ [a group of secretly hacked, controlled computers] are likely a major factor in this.

Here is the web address for the live map:

https://threatmap.checkpoint.com/ThreatPortal/livemap.html

Smart Phone Cleaner!

My favorite part of this product, by “SmartKlear” [Carbon Smartphone Cleaner], by far: “the same technology used in the NASA space station“. Wow, NASA technology at only $14.95!

“This smartphone cleaner kills bacteria and wipes smudges, streaks, and oily fingerprints right off the screen. SmartKlear uses an invisible carbon substance that repels dirt and oil—the same technology used in the NASA space station”

https://www.thegrommet.com/tech-gadgets/smartklear-carbon-smartphone-cleaner

Top Cloud Services Compared

This is a great resource that compares the top dogs of Cloud Computing: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud. It turns out they all have various strengths and weaknesses. It is hard to bet against Google with all of its Mega Billions of dollars in cash at its disposal. On the other hand, AWS has the upper hand overall with customer base and raw Cloud products, but Microsoft is very strong in bridging the gap for customers between public and private cloud (or hybrid scenarios), in addition to having its long Server and Support history along with Office 365.

https://www.datamation.com/cloud-computing/aws-vs-azure-vs-google-cloud-comparison.html

Google Cloud Platform Pitch

Kind of Marketing, kind of sales pitchy, kind of, “Rah-rah, go Google, go”, but I cannot say these observations are wrong. This not only applies to Google Cloud but to Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure as well.

Per the author of this Medium article:

“More often than not, it is because, coming from other platforms, they have gotten used to some features requiring multiple steps, or some operations being complicated, etc. And often they find out that in GCP you can do this specific operation in a couple of clicks, or by setting up a simple text-based configuration. Then you see that light bulb turning on in their head, and there you go… happy customer.

A few of these happen so often that I compiled them in a list to share with others who might also benefit from these “aha!” moments. You could say these are the five things I wish they told me when I started using Google Cloud.”

Full article here.

Microsoft Azure Sentinel

This new Azure Sentinel offering from Microsoft looks fantastic. It looks to improve the usual “SEIM” offerings out there. SEIM is an acronym for security information and event manager platform. This product or service can be set up and viewed right with Azure, of course.

The usual [overpriced] “SEIM” tools do not quite have the full Cloud ready set of tools available with Sentinel. Sentinel is, in a nutshell:

“Azure Sentinel is a cloud-native security information and event manager (SIEM) platform that uses built-in AI to help analyze large volumes of data across an enterprise—fast. Azure Sentinel aggregates data from all sources, including users, applications, servers, and devices running on-premises or in any cloud, letting you reason over millions of records in a few seconds. “

Azure Sentinel in full

Azure PostgreSQL GUI

Microsoft Azure has introduced a PostreSQL GUI extension. This is part of the Azure Data Studio. They have created a really nice graphical user interface to manage not just one postgres database, but multiple ones. There is nothing wrong with command line but for getting certain types of tasks or work done, this is a huge improvement.

The GUI provides for a thorough overview and yes, visualization of databases, servers, tables, indexes and more. In addition, the new tool allows for connecting to the database directly or to a local or cloud-based server. The PostgreSQL extension allows for color coding of different servers within the GUI for ease of use, if there is more than one server.

The new tool allows for locating database objects, queries by way of IntelliSense, creating query templates, customizing the editor and Git source control integration.

USB4 Clocking in at 40 Gbps

This “PC World” and other USB4 related stories are emphasizing the upcoming USB4 spec compatibility, so to speak, with Thunderbolt. While this is understandable, given that its port can be used by devices of both protocols, I cannot get enough of the bandwidth that USB4 promises! 40 Gbps is outrageously fast!

Although this is actually equivalent to the bandwidth or data transfer rate of Thunderbolt, remember that this is USB we are referring to! USB 2.0 speeds clocked in at around 480 Mbps. So … this is incredible progress. Unfortunately, the USB4 spec will not be officially in effect at stores until about 2020.

https://www.pcworld.com/article/3347403/the-new-usb4-spec-promises-a-lot-thunderbolt-3-support-40gbps-bandwidth-and-less-confusion.html

Microsoft Azure Archive Storage

Azure Archive Storage is perfect for rarely referenced or used data. Whether the data is archived health, government, business, or any type of data, the data may nonetheless need a place to be stored, ‘just in case’ … Or it may be a legal or organizational requirement that mandates all the data be stored away. Azure archive storage is low cost storage for just this purpose. In other words, this data simply needs to be securely stored away, preferably at a low cost.

This Azure archive storage is perfectly suited for any organization tired of using old tape back ups as well as for aging video and other multimedia content. It is also perfect for corporate or governmental requirements mandating data be kept for say, 7-14 years. In addition, the data storage is automatically encrypted after transfer.

General Azure storage pricing is available in tiered pricing, with Archive Storage having the “lowest storage cost and higher data retrieval costs”. In other words, if truly rarely accessed and destined for long-term storage, data stored at this tier is a very good deal.

Further information on Azure Archive, Blob and General Storage.