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The identity of things to accompany IoT

SN blogs: This week, analysts discuss the identity of everything as related to Internet of Things, concerns about cloud security and why SDN needs a solid business case to evolve successfully.

Earl Perkins, research vice president at Gartner Inc., offers a fresh perspective on the Internet of Things (IoT). Perkins suggests that rather than focusing on how things can be connected to the Internet, people should be focusing on the identity of things. He says developers should focus on the relationships between businesses, people and objects first and then figure out how the technology can reflect these relationships. He uses an example of a car to explain how a person is connected to an enterprise when he signs a contract to purchase a car and is simultaneously linked to the car he buys. While Perkins says the idea can be a bit confusing, it will unfold further. Perkins says a fundamental component of the identity of things is a transformation in identity management, which will help fuel the growth of the IoT.

Read more of Perkins' explanation about the identity of things.

The network doesn't need SDN, at least from a business perspective

While there is a lot of talk about software defined networking (SDN) and the benefits it may provide to networking, not everyone thinks it's a logical next step-- at least from a business perspective. VirtualizedGeek blogger Keith Townsend says that even though SDN is an innovative technology, it's not necessarily a business-worthy concept. Because the current networking model of getting data from one point to another is working just fine, a business aspect must be found to support the pitch for SDN. Townsend compares it to VoIP. Before there was a business desire to have instant messaging, conferencing and video, VoIP was not a necessary service. After prospective customers saw the benefits of collaborative business applications that spun out of VoIP, the protocol became a necessity. Overall, says Townsend, SDN should be part of the argument for a new networking model, but not the main point.

Read more of why there needs to be a business case for SDN.

IT should focus on the user, not the technology

Enterprise Management Associates blogger Dennis Drogseth says it's time for a fundamental change in the way people view IT management. Drogseth writes that many IT professionals are focused onsystem management as opposed to business service management. To that end, there should be more of a focus on the interpersonal relations with the people whom IT teams serve. In other words, IT is not merely an operational team that focuses on complex technical issues, but it is a group of people who should also be prioritizing user experience management. Among the benefits a user-focused IT approach yields, according to an EMA survey: a more positive business impact and business outcomes, proactive application performance management and a better understanding of service usage for costs and portfolio planning. As he writes, "In contrast, if/when IT can recast its attentions beyond 'systems management' toward a deeper set of insights into the personalities, behaviors and business-related consequences of the customers it serves –then IT will have crossed the user-experience management footbridge to the other side of the 21st century cultural chasm.

Read more about Drogseth's value vs. cost explanation.

How to prepare for cloud security risks

Enterprise Strategy Group Analyst Jon Oltsik says that even as security professionals grow even more concerned about the security threats involved with cloud computing, enterprises seem to be making the shift anyway. For financial and business benefits of using software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and infrastructure as a service (IaaS), Oltsik says he understands why ESG research shows 72% of companies surveyed increased spending on cloud computing initiatives, citing SaaS and PaaS as business benefits. But, Oltsik says it's hard to ignore the security concerns reflected in a 2013 ESG survey in which 33% of enterprise security professionals cited the lack of control they had over external IT resources. At this point, however, there is no stopping enterprises from moving to the cloud. So how does Oltsik suggest companies deal with the risk? Managing identity, data and visibility are essential. It is also important to know who is accessing your applications, where sensitive data is stored and to make sure chief information security officers have visibility over everything.

Read how to make sure CISOs have complete visibility over a network.

This was first published in August 2014

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