BetaNews Staff

Ransomware happens -- get over it and be prepared

In its recent State of the Channel Ransomware Report, data protection firm Datto found that SMBs ponied up some $301 million to digital hostage takers over the course of the past year. According to the survey that claims to have spoken to some 1,700 MSPs, representing over 100,000 clients, 21 percent stated that their clients suffered six or more attacks last year.

Simply put, roughly one in five organizations were victims of ransomware. However more disturbing was that 99 percent of MSPs told researchers that they expect to see the rise in ransomware attacks continue to grow over the next two years.

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Tablet Hotels 2.0 is our new go-to app for booking a hotel

There are so many options out there for finding and booking a discounted hotel. Indeed, there are websites which will attempt to collate various booking options to pull together the best deals in a single location.

Although it’s great to obtain a discount from your hotel (and let’s face it here, if you call the hotel direct, you’ll often be able to negotiate your own deal), we want a website which pulls together feedback from people who have stayed in the hotel, take this feedback seriously, providing a good deal on the back of this.
Tablet Hotels has recently become our go-to booking site of choice having had had a very pleasant experience booking a hotel in Williamsburg, New York. At the last minute, we had to push back our flight due to bad weather in Texas, but Tablet took these circumstances into account and negotiated with the hotel to rearrange our last minute plans to accommodate. No cancellation or changes fees, at all. When we arrived at the hotel, we found Tablet had added its Plus feature automatically to our booking so were offered a room upgrade, free gifts and a (very) late checkout option.

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Three game-changers in the Automotive industry in 2018

New data-driven services, strong light-weight materials and a rapidly built out infrastructure for EVs (Electric Vehicles) are trends impacting the automotive industry throughout 2018.

Stefan Issing, the Global Industry Director for Automotive at IFS, presents his industry predictions for the year ahead.

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Net Neutrality is over: Here are three things to know and do


On December 14, 2017 the United States Federal Communications voted to end Net Neutrality. In other words, they are reversing a 2015 FCC vote to classify Internet Service Providers (ISPs) as "common carriers" rather than "information providers" according to Title II of the Communications Act of 1934 and Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

As common carriers, ISPs must provide equal access to all consumers and all businesses on all devices. They cannot throttle traffic, or block certain web sites, or charge more for consumers to access specific URLs such as,, or

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Top enterprise security predictions for 2018

2017 delivered a good deal of excitement (as well as massive, massive headaches) in IT security. WannaCry attacked more than 300,000 computers in 150 countries only to be followed by Petya a month later. And the pain extended beyond the enterprise when consumers bore the brunt of one of the most devastating hacks to hit the U.S.: the Equifax breach. The Equifax hack reportedly affected 145.5 million U.S. consumers -- or approximately 44 percent of the U.S. population -- leaving people vulnerable to financial fraud for potentially the rest of their lives.

These were just some of the year’s lowlights, all of which point to a future where nearly every organization is reliant on successful cybersecurity. It can literally mean the difference between a company’s survival and extension. As such, 2018 should be all about advancing enterprise security initiatives, and below are my top predictions to ensure the integrity of systems across the globe.

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Are Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) the future of mobile?

There are two types of businesses in today’s mobile-first world: businesses that have a mobile app and those that do not. The one thing that these two sides have in common is that both are looking towards progressive web apps (PWAs) and wondering what the impact of this new app experience will be and how it will change the mobile world.

Businesses that have already invested in developing a native mobile app are looking at PWAs cautiously. While these new apps represent a new frontier to be explored and leveraged to improve and expand on an existing app experience, they also have the potential to elbow native apps out of the spotlight. Thus, these companies may find that their investment into a native app was not as long-term as they anticipated.

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Why employees should aim to fail in 2018


As children, most of us learned the hard way not to touch a hot stove. The instant searing pain and the lingering bite that followed and lasted for at least a couple days is the bitter reminder that we had messed up. But ask yourself, have you touched a hot stove since?

The lesson learned here still follows us throughout our lives because learning from failure is the quickest path to growth. The first time one falls for a phishing email is no different.

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5 ways artificial intelligence is changing the future of work

Artificial intelligence

The proliferation of artificial intelligence (AI) is changing everything about the way we live, shop and communicate. From Amazon’s incredibly helpful recommendation engine, and Target’s startlingly accurate pregnancy predictor, to the diagnosis and prediction of medical conditions, we’ve become simultaneously slightly creeped out, yet also somewhat dependent, on AI.

In some cases, it’s become so seamlessly woven into our daily lives that we hardly even notice. For example, Apple’s QuickType keyboard, which suggests the next word based on the context of your message, is an AI technology that many of us rely on every day without even realizing it.

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Download and watch a movie or boxset on your smartphone using these handy apps

Not so long ago, when you stepped on a long-haul flight, you had to rely on their entertainment system to keep you and your kids entertained. And that’s if worked at all.

Thanks to your tablet or smartphone, you can now download your favorite movie or boxset and watch what you want, on your own personal device, when you want. You also control what your kids can watch, which is a bonus. You have the smartphone or tablet, now you need the relevant app to download content.

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Keep on top of your wardrobe using these three apps

For the fashion conscious, the change in seasons usually follows a change in wardrobe and when it comes to upgrading a wardrobe, everyone has different requirements.

But, there are people who avoid retail at all costs, shopping on the internet and ordering everything to their home. You can go one step further as many high street retails have sophisticated apps which make online clothes shopping a pleasant experience. We’ve picked three of the best.

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How AR will impact our daily lives in 2018

Don’t know how to change a tire when you desperately need to? No problem. What if all you needed was a set of glasses and an expert technician would virtually come to wherever you are and walk you through the necessary steps? That same set of glasses can help train doctors and CIA agents in environments deemed dangerous in the real world. It could teach drone pilots how to navigate surroundings that aren’t so practical. It could take you and your family on a trip to the Louvre Museum without you ever setting foot in France.

This is the power of Augmented Reality (AR), an industry that’s projected to reach $50 billion by 2021 and $7 trillion by 2027.

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Security burnout: Avoidable or inevitable?

The biggest threat facing cybersecurity is not advanced attackers or evolving technology. It is the lack of people able to defend networks.

Cybersecurity experts predict that by 2021 there will be 3.5 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs. That number is up from one million in 2016. The reasons behind this global issue are complicated, but many of them stem from the overarching issue of security burnout and the difficulty of new individuals entering the cybersecurity workforce to reduce the overall workload.

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How blockchain is going to transform the real estate industry in 2018

The drama of bitcoin has taken the concept of the blockchain mainstream over the past five years. With prices going up and down (and up again), the mystery of its creator, the intrigue of bitcoin’s early Silk Road connections, and now institutional involvement from banks, hedge funds, and even governments, bitcoin has taken quite the journey.

Bitcoin may be the most well-known manifestation of blockchain technology, but there are countless other applications that have nothing to do with "crypto-currency." Real estate is a prime example, and in 2018, blockchain technology is going to transform the real estate industry in three key ways.

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Get active and outdoors with these 3 apps

Staying healthy and active is becoming more popular and there are many indoor or outdoor activities you can choose from to get fit.

One of the most popular is the traditional run, but we’re seeking new trails to expand our horizons. Smartphones and wearables enable you to find new trails, time your runs, enable you to compete with others and even coach to improve your standard. We’ve selected 3 apps which you can use to for your run.

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Six takeaways from GES 2017

Last week, I joined more than 1,500 entrepreneurs from 150 countries for the 2017 Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) in Hyderabad, India. GES was started in 2010 by then-President Barack Obama to foster innovation in the US and abroad. This was its eighth year, following successful summits in places like Stanford University, Nairobi, Dubai, and Morocco.

It was an honor to represent my company, my city, and my country among the best and brightest entrepreneurial minds in the world. Prime Minister of India and startup champion Narenda Modi was the perfect keynote to welcome the world’s top innovators. Here are my top six takeaways from the whirlwind week.

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