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Converge Tech and Business Week in Review – March 4, 2017

The S3 storage outage that brought down the Internet, the Slack bug that could have been a big nightmare for business owners, how virtual reality can transform remote work, and how understanding your co-workers can help keep you and your business safe from phishing scams. We offer these and other interesting stories in our weekly overview of the tech and business news that we think you may want to know about.

AWS cloudsplains what happened during S3 storage outage. Last Monday, if you were working on artwork using Canva and could not access your design the following day and wanted to bang your head on your desk, you were not alone. The staff at Canva was responding to tons of irate users who were trying to meet deadlines but couldn’t get any work done. Buffer, Imgur, Medium and a host of other major websites were affected. People didn’t have any idea what was happening. The websites became inaccessible after Amazon’s website hosting service went down unexpectedly. The outage caused hundreds of sites to lose access to images and videos because the sites rely so heavily on S3 to store data online.  To better understand what happened and see what measures Amazon is taking to prevent this from happening again, read this TechCrunch article shared by Kris Heamer.

A Slack Bug Could Have Been Everyone’s Worst Office Nightmare.  More and more companies are using collaborative tools to communicate with co-workers, especially when team members are in different remote locations. Tools like Slack have become popular because it also reduces the amount of email teams receive daily. This week it was reported that Slack has fixed a security flaw that can allow hackers to steal user authentication tokens. The tokens can be used to gain full access to accounts and messages. If this had not been discovered, it could have caused a huge nightmare for companies who share sensitive data using Slack. Check out this article shared by Bob Carver about how the bug was discovered and what effects it might have had had it remained undiscovered.

VR could help transform remote work. According to a recent report from Gallup, 37 percent of U.S. workers have worked remotely at some point. More companies now have a workforce that depends on distributed teams not just in the U.S. and, in some instances, around the globe. When companies embrace the strategy of allowing team members to work from home, the benefits can be huge, but communication and camaraderie can present challenges. One solution may be virtual reality. HR departments can use VR technology to conduct training. Companies can also use virtual reality to help engineers and product designers create prototypes and test the products using simulations, potentially saving businesses significant time and money. Check out this article shared by Massimillano Gattoni about how VR can help transform remote work. If you work with remote teams, it is definitely worth the read.

A better security strategy than ‘know your enemy’: Know your co-worker. According to a report released by Verizon, 90 percent of breaches include a phishing or social engineering component. One of the hottest commodities popping up on underground or dark web marketplaces are credentials which attackers can use to log into enterprise systems and make it appear like they’re legitimate users. Phishing scammers are becoming more sophisticated every day and it’s getting harder to spot them especially if they gain access via email that appears to come from trusted friends and colleagues. The article below includes some of the ways hackers can fool unsuspecting users. It also points out that something as simple as an uncharacteristic turn of a phrase can clue people into an email’s legitimacy. Find out how you can protect yourself and your business by checking out this article from Patrick Miller. A must read for sure.

Register for The Collaboration Summit. We have a remote team, comprised of members with a wide variety of different skillsets. One of the secrets to our continued success with a virtual team is that we’re big on collaboration and using technology within our organization is how we not only stay connected to one another, it has everything to do with our ability to be productive. Whether your company is large or small, chances are good that collaboration tech is on your radar screen for these very reasons.

Join us on April 13 at 10:00 am PST / 12 PM EST for The Collaboration Summit.  During this interactive event, we’ll explore new collaborative technologies, best-in-class practices, and hear about the latest trends from industry experts. The event will include three educational sessions, an expo hall, and a resource center with e-books and extras designed to help attendees assess the best in collaboration tech and .

Register here for this free virtual event.

Photo Credit: franklinmatango Flickr via Compfight cc

Shelly Kramer

Shelly Kramer is a 20+ year marketing veteran and CEO of V3 Broadsuite, a marketing consultancy, and the President of Broadsuite Media Group. She’s a business strategist focused on B2B digital transformation, and delivering integrated marketing solutions for clients. She’s an expert at omnichannel marketing, content strategy and execution, connecting social media to business initiatives, and helping clients leverage the web for growth and profitability.