An update and a recap we are in the middle of 2018!

It’s Summer, the heat in Norway and most of the world is unreal these days with world records being broken. We are in the middle of 2018, and a lot has happened!

I joined Lumagate in March as a Principal Solution Architect, and in May the rebranding to Innofactor was completed which was celebrated with an event called Inspirit that was held in Helsinki.

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Innofactor is a leading provider of digitalization and cloud solutions in the Nordic countries. Our task is to help our customers digitalize their business, promote a collaborative way of working, and develop their business processes by utilizing data-driven decision making and secure cloud services. Together with our customers, partners, employees, and investors we produce solutions that help our customers and society to succeed.

If you are looking for a place where you can work with cutting-edge technology, good colleagues and exciting days, you should definitely check us out.

On the 7th of June, I spoke at GNIST, a cloud seminar put-together by Innofactor. Primed on cloud computing, there were a lot of exciting speakers and topics. I was asked to hold a session, and I did one called “A recipe for Cloud Migration” where I covered getting control over operational costs, increasing workforce productivity and driving business agility by moving to Cloud.

If you are holding an event and have a call for content or speakers, let me know. I’ll check it out, and I can if you want also forward it to other relevant speakers based on topic and audience.

 

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Also at the start of July, I was announced as an Alibaba Cloud Most Valuable Professional which I am incredibly humbled by and appreciative to be recognised by Alibaba Cloud for doing the things I love. Nothing is more rewarding than to be able to do what I’m passionate about technology, security and the intersection of it all with the human element. There is no doubt that Alibaba Cloud is the go-to cloud for anyone looking to have a presence in mainland China.

 

2018 has been a year to symbolise new beginnings and challenges which I am thoroughly enjoying. Working a lot with governance for enterprise organizations as well as hosters in the Nordics and massive datacenter migrations to cloud, I’m looking forward to writing more on this going forward and sharing my insight as well as hearing from you; what your thoughts, gotchas, questions or pitfalls you’d like to ask about or share.

 

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Enjoy the summer and remember to stay hydrated!

If there are any topics or areas you’d like me to focus on, don’t hesitate to let me know! As always you can reach me at @UlvBjornsson, via the comments or by connecting with me on LinkedIn.

Microsoft’s Coco framework: Enhancing cybersecurity on the Blockchain

Article-5-2.jpgCoco Framework, is NOT a blockchain ledger.

Coco is a blockchain ledger framework.

It leverages a combination of trusted execution environments, advanced cryptography and innovative blockchain-focused consensus mechanisms to enable new ways of utilizing the blockchain. Coco stands for Confidential Consortium.

If you want a deeper dive, I suggest you check out the Coco Framework whitepaper, here.

Additionally, Microsoft offers BaaS (Blockchain-as-a-service) and was chosen by Bankchain which is a platform for banks that want to implement blockchain technology; members include State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, DCB Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Federal Bank, Deutsche Bank and UAE Exchange.

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GOODBYE TWENTY SEVENTEEN, HELLO TWENTY EIGHTEEN.

January has gone by fast, feels like New Year’s Eve was just yesterday. I’m writing this to catch up with all of you and to officially say welcome 2018!

Some highlights for me this year has been to increase the number of certifications I hold the most noteworthy being:

MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure — Certified 2018
MCSE: Productivity — Certified 2018
MCSE: Mobility — Certified 2018
MCSA: Windows Server 2016 – Certified 2018
MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure — Certified 2017
Certified Ethical Hacker

I’ve travelled extensively! going to Seoul in Korea and later to VMworld Barcelona in Spain as well as the World Blockchain Forum in London and to Singapore during Christmas, for vacation and meet-ups.

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Artificial intelligence and Cloud computing: Real-time fraud detection in online banking application within the cloud

Over the last few years, cloud computing has been the buzz. Cloud computing services offer an infrastructure that is highly scalable and supports high-performance computing. With high adoption by businesses of all sizes. Development and deployment of applications within the cloud platform are easy and time to market is done in a fraction of the time.

Artificial intelligence is not a new technology. It has been here for a long time and has helped develop computers and software that perform tasks that are associated with intelligence. Machine learning and deep learning are subsets of artificial intelligence that involve the development of algorithms that learn from data inputs and give intelligent output based on that data and the learned patterns.

A lot of research has been done and still is being done on implementing artificial intelligence into cloud computing. Cloud service providers such as Amazon, Google and Microsoft have already integrated AI into their clouds to improve service delivery. AI brings about capabilities such as machine learning, recognition of patterns and robotics to the cloud. On the other hand, the cloud is able to provide a wide range and large volumes of data since these capabilities are largely dependent on data as input so as to produce the desired output. The cloud also allows the systems to open-access and open-source data which is very crucial in facilitating collaborative learning.

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Aww ye, I can now call myself a Certified Ethical Hacker

Busy days! Reading, exams, a lot of exciting features coming out into the market from a myriad of different vendors and gigantic leaps being made every day.

I wanted to share the news, I am now a Certified Ethical Hacker!

What does that mean? Just that I now am certified to attest that I have a baseline knowledge when it comes to how to go about penetrating a network or a computer system but with the purpose of finding and fixing security vulnerabilities within an ethical framework.

There is a progression learning track so the next step would be to study to be a Certified Security Analyst or a Licensed Penetration Tester.

To summarize what the CEH exam tests you on it is broken up into these sections:

I. Background

II. Analysis/Assessment

III. Security

IV. Tools/Systems/Programs

V. Procedures / Methodology

VI. Regulation/Policy

VII. Ethics

If you are curious about what the exam objectives are in detail, check out this blueprint.

You can connect with me on Twitter @UlvBjornsson, on this blog, or in the comment section below.

See you around!

Ulv
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I’m going to VMworld 2017 Barcelona!

Trip is booked and I’m leaving on Sunday for VMworld 2017 in Barcelona, woho!

I’ll be blogging each day and I’ll try to include pictures and information for those not able to attend.

A lot of exciting sessions, I can’t wait to hear more about Horizon in the Public Clouds or the exciting breakout sessions about the Digital Workspace, Security Transformation and especially the many roundtable sessions. If you are curious about the sessions check out the tracks here.

Looking forward to meet up with many of you, and hitting up vendor booths and just theory-crafting ideas, and concepts to come.

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If you are going to VMworld 2017 next week and want to meet up, hit me up on here, message me on Twitter or LinkedIn.

If nothing else make sure you’re signed up for the variety of events available after hours. If you know me you call me or mail me. You got my digits.

Stay tuned for my updates on VMworld 2017 over on Twitter @UlvBjornsson and thanks for tuning in!

Creating a Load Balancer in the Microsoft Cloud: Azure

WHAT IS AZURE LOAD BALANCER?

Azure Load Balancer secures high availability and network performance to your applications/frontend/backend.

It is a Layer 4 load balancer (TCP/UDP) that distributes traffic among instances of services defined in the load-balanced set.

You can load-balance web applications, Virtual Machines, and so-on by routing traffic based on NAT rules that you configure on the load-balancer.

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Security baseline for Windows 10 v1703 now out!

Microsoft just published the security baseline for Windows 10 “Creators Update” v1703!

Now you might ask, why should I use a security baseline? First off – it’s for OS hardening, and it saves you a lot of manual work by having ready made settings setup and gives you the importable GPOs, as well as a multitude of custom ADMX files with them visually laid out for you in a spreadsheet.

This allows you to tweak your settings to what best suits your environment.

It’s an incredibly helpful tool for image building, particularly for those of us in verticals that require constant vigilance.

Now if you are new to OS hardening and security baselines, you really should check out Microsoft’s Security Compliance Toolkit!

You can get the Security baseline for Windows 10 “Creators Update (v1703) from here.

See you at the World Blockchain Forum in London!

Event ticket is booked, and plane tickets are locked-in!

Who else is going to the World Blockchain Forum? It’s being held in London from September 25th to the 26th, and also the Dash Conference is on the 24th of September!

It’s a very exciting time, with the increased adoption of blockchain technology, the pace of innovation and the amount of money being thrown after ICOs. This conference will have a wide array of exciting topics from blockchain, bitcoin, ethereum, ICOs and investing, regulations, startups and disruption and so much more!

Some of the biggest personalities, developers and minds in the industry will be speaking and presenting in 20-minute time slots throughout the two-day conference.

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