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Metadata Matters: Is Big Brother Watching? Yup!

I am one who is continually harping on security and protection of all assets in an organization. I turned the table on myself the other day and started thinking about the mis-use and abuse of personal information by organizations. If we look at Morgan Stanley, why on earth was an essentially a junior level financial advisor given access to all client data? What were they thinking? Big mistake. What about from the marketing perspective? As a member of that profession, marketing loves to gather as much data as possible about clients to increase sales. In fact, our job depends on it. Just a fact of life maybe.

But what about other uses, or mis-uses of privacy data? Regardless of industry, including government, who does have access to my personal information? More people than I would think and more information than I would expect. Not all internal breaches are caused by nefarious purposes but the information is available for the taking.

I suppose it can be attributed to the ethics of the organization, how they protect data, and the importance they place on protecting privacy data. I’ve had my personal information compromised three times now. In the last incident, which was HIPAA data, it was entirely up to me to protect my identity. That included notifying all credit agencies, putting credit holds on all accounts, and purchasing credit monitoring software. To say the least it’s rather irksome. Given that most organizations don’t even report a breach until they absolutely must, we, the people carry the burden of someone else’s mistake. And then we have to figure out how to get our identity back. 

I wonder how bad will this get?  Since most employers are now doing comprehensive background checks, you do have some recourse. You can request your own Lexis/Nexis Accurint Person Report, which is free. At least you can see what your potential employer may see.

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Waiting for the ball to drop? This isn’t Times Square.

I just reviewed ’29 Warning Signs of Digital Disruption’ recently published by AIIM and produced by John Mancini. Since I am into research I found it fascinating. The slides were in reference to their AIIM surveys conducted to identify ‘global’ challenges many organizations face.

The statistics that I found particularly interesting include:

  • 71% of organizations recognize that search is vital or essential, yet only 18% have cross-repository search capabilities
  • 38% of organizations have not tuned or optimized their search tool at all, including 8% who have not even switched it on
  • 47% of organizations feel that universal search and compliant eDiscovery is becoming near impossible
  • 53% of organizations admit that their legal discovery procedures are “ad hoc, manual, disruptive, and expensive”
  • 42% of organizations struggle with unstructured inputs and connecting them to key business systems

The issue that I see, based on the presentation, is that organizations recognize the problem with information access, but are content to live with it. What I don’t know is why. As a software vendor with search solutions, the bullets can be relatively easily resolved. We can supply the technology but it is up to the organization to perform due diligence, planning, and the execution. Not easy, but if an organization could resolve just the above search challenges, would it be worth it? I think so.
I’m not sure what these organizations are waiting for? Do you?

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Bye Bye SharePoint – You can’t say you weren’t warned!

I read an excellent Gartner document entitled, ‘Redefine Microsoft’s Role in Your Web Strategy as SharePoint Moves to the Cloud’. Access to the document requires you to be a Gartner client. But, I’ll share the scoop. The summary: “Thousands of organizations counting on SharePoint as the basis for their websites and portals will have to revise their plans. Microsoft is pushing SharePoint users toward a cloud-based offering that doesn’t support the customization, integration and innovation their initiatives require.” Wow.

I think most SharePoint clients and professionals already knew that. If not, they should. What are the impacts that Gartner was able to identify?

  • Many organizations using SharePoint for portal and website initiatives will find a collaboration-focused, cloud-based SharePoint unsuitable to their unique needs.
  • Due to Microsoft pushing SharePoint into the cloud, Web leaders can no longer expect SharePoint to provide suitable content management for most customer-facing websites and digital marketing efforts.
  • Organizations that have invested in custom development or third-party add-ons will be forced to revise their existing codebases and change future custom development.

I’ve grown rather fond of SharePoint over the years. I guess, there comes a time when all things come to an end. But, back to the real world, reading the hand-writing on the wall, is your organization making any plans for doomsday when SharePoint is no more? Although still in the distant (or not so distant) future, is your organization aware of and facing any of the obstacles of replicating your on-premise SharePoint to Office 365?

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Social Media – Who really cares how many Tweets you get?

I don’t often write about social media, probably because we are a ‘business to business’ (B2B) company and it’s nice to get a tweet, but it not game changing. Since we are B2B, tweets are around something that people have found interesting such as a webinar or a paper being written. We don’t even have a Facebook presence. We just didn’t think it was necessary.

So where am I going here? Heinz Ketchup really doesn’t need my ‘Like’ to succeed or not. From the organization perspective, they have an ‘it’s all about me’ mentality. As far as I am concerned there are many marketing departments who have lost their way, and marketing professionals who are getting paid on how many tweets and likes they can get.

The problem with social media it is typically one-way. It is not encouraging two-way conversation with your most valuable asset – your customer (or prospect).

Externally, social media for the most part isn’t doing its job. At a different level I resent the stealthy actions of search engines who believe they know exactly what I need and what I should be searching for. At times, the ads make me chuckle, other times you wish there was a button on your desk that would shout a large ‘Wrong Again’ back to the offending search engine for poor results.

My question, and I don’t have the answer, how do business to business companies leverage social media? Should they? Or in my case, who cares?

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