Does Convergence make Life Smarter?

Yes, Does Convergence really makes our Life Smarter & Secure?  Convergence is no longer a buzzword. It used to be one in the early 2000’s when I happened to attend a show. One of the panelists, who then headed Cisco in India and later headed EMC in India brought up a nice point that I still remember 17 years down the line.
 
 
He declared  “the key to Convergence is Conversion” And added, “when I get into my office I check my official mail, my personal mail, my landline voicemail, my mobile voicemail and several more….cant Voice and data convergence also make me converge to a platform where I have the option to choose and prioritize?” 
 
I understand, while we believe that we have moved up the value chain, we have become lazy. 
 
Let me try to prove my point by asking you a simple question.
 
When you switch on your mobile phone what do you look into? 
 
The same thing that the panelist mentioned + various apps: Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, Instagram, bank accounts, news sites for headlines, virus scan results, spam accumulated and even forget how we stand on the power situation.
 
To avoid these hassles and keying in the password, we usually have all the apps passwords keyed in with a remember me “ticked”
 
Now there are two hassles to it.
 
  1. Where is true convergence?
  2. Where is the security if my phone is stolen/lost and someone manages to crack the pattern password on my smartphone screen

 

The finder can get hold of my identity if it falls into wrong hands then it can be disastrous!

 

On the 30th of December 2009, I was sitting in the airport lounge in Bengaluru (exclusively for Kingfisher – it operated then) when my co-passenger opened the Mac placed in the lounge to see someones Gmail open. Being a good Samaritan, he used the same account to send a mail to the account of the person who left it open, describing how he was violating his personal security and calling for unnecessary trouble.
 
Therefore the issue is not with the simple convergence of technology, it’s about our behavioral pattern. 
 
Since the smartphone is our co-passenger to our destination always, can we not get a SMARTER converged application that helps us  SECURE our friend for life? 
 
Our Data, our phone, and our family? why have multiple apps fed us with respective data?
PS: Author has traveled extensively across Asia and analyzed the behavioral pattern of residents all across. However, his opinions are his opinions and he agrees to answer back to any and every query.

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Are Smarter People MORE Secure?

Still pondering what smarter people got to do with being more secure? Read on!
 
This is something very strange that happened to me recently and my family consisting of my wife(other than me) changed their opinion about me. 
 
 Ever since I bought myself my first smartphone, I wanted to use it differently than most others(whom I believe transited from a normal phone to a smartphone for looks, peer pressure , play-list etc) not true Convergence to make their lives Smarter and more Secure.I took to evaluating every app that came my way and keep those that I felt might be helpful and deleted the rest. My wife was of the opinion that I carried more garbage than useful matter when I traveled and hated my smartphone
 
Email access on handhelds is nothing new and since the Blackberry days, it was a must for every frequent traveler. My travel schedules are such that twice  in life I have been in 4 different cities on the same day. 
 
One day I return home from a business trip to see my wife in a sad state of mind, very nervous and weeping. On asking she replied that police had come and had summoned me to the police station without stating any reason. 
 
The next morning I went to the police station and my wife accompanied me being in a zombie state after a sleepless night. Not that I wasn’t tensed
 
At the police station, they asked my wife to be seated and wait and I was taken inside the interrogation room and grilled but not more than 30 min when my wife saw me smiling and returning back with the investigating officer.
 
We shook hands and while I was to leave the police station, my co-passenger, my wife asked me “what actually the matter was”.
 
I replied, “this is not the right place, let’s reach home, after that we can discuss this over breakfast”.
 
Back at home when I narrated the incident to my wife, to my dismay, I realized that she with a big smile on her face asking me “ when are you getting your salary? I want to buy myself a ‘smartness kit as well’! or can I use my credit card as the bill could reach only next month!”
 
What happened was something like this:
 
Inside the locked interrogation room, I was charged with a hit and run case where the victim passed away on the spot! Since I had a red Jeep (so has many) the nearby CCTV which could not capture my no. captured an image of the car. I was, therefore, a prime suspect.
 
The incident took place on the night whose date was 2 days before and I knew for sure I was in Singapore that night. I was neither carrying my boarding passes nor my passport to the police station, but how did I manage to go free?
 
I remembered that I had an app ( I am an App Addict), that could possibly prove that my innocence.
 
I checked my mailbox and pulled the ‘Daily Whereabouts’ mail that I used to get from this life saver & wonderfully smart app, called MIFON, and it clearly had logged my whereabouts for that day. I immediately submitted it to the police offer as evidence that I not where close the incident  They verified submission  &  found my claim to be correct. I also said I am ready to furnish the immigration papers on my passport and my visa stampings etc. 
  
On verification, they said, “apologies for the convenience Sir, we understand the pain you and your family went through, but to close the formalities we would send a bearer with these photo’s( i had forwarded the e-mail to them) in a hard copy with your due clearences, kindly sign the documents”
 
Why do you carry just a Smartphone when there are Smarterphones available?
 
(The author is considered as an app fanatic and possibly downloads and tries out every app on his Smartphone that he comes across,)

Why associate SECURITY with VIRUS?  Think SMARTER

 

Is Data Security = Anti-Virus?

 
If one were to ask you in confidence what is a virus? In early 1980’s your answer would likely have been “unknown germs that make you ill”. In mid 1990’s it translated to “ a problem on my PC” and today “ dirty people who write those dirty software to bring down computers”. Look at the transformation, can i say its an example of physical energy being transformed into digital energy?
I was going through a nice video interview on this by a group of well-known panelists and I will share it with you moving forward in case you reply back asking for it. The result or conclusion of the discussion was “anti-virus should be made by the organizations that make the software for which virus can be written”.
 
So why equate antivirus with security? For Clean non-buggy software for which virus cannot be written do not need an anti-virus, they only need a Cleanser.
 
Just like our journey from pen and paper moved to digitization in mid-eighties and fixed to mobile computing in mid 90’. This is the era of pocket full data” if I may call it so” as our smartphone moves with us wherever we go, in other words, our identity and data is 100% mobile!!
 
 
How many of you can name a virus on Android or IOS? 
 
This era is not about anti-virus, it’s about protection and safeguard…..protection of your families whereabouts and their data, protection of your personal data and not to forget protection of your data carrying devices …..your smartphone….so make it SMARTER!!!!
stay connected stay assured with mifon
Use tools and apps that can make your phone unloseable, anti-theft and can carry the data and physical location of your family and loved ones….the anti-virus will anyway come free(as writing a virus on the Android platform is not impossible but surely “near-impossible….no intentions to hurt historical characters). Anti-virus should never be built as a standalone software unless the platform it’s being built for is extremely unsafe and buggy!!!
 
My final question to you is …when are YOU getting SMARTER?????
 
PS: Opinions are personal to the author and can be questione
 
There are SMARTER ways to be SECURE.
 
Did you like your parents policing you when you were a kid? I did not.   Physical SECURITY those days were not so SECURE as its perhaps today.
 
I was having a chat with a long-time friend of mine, who has a teenaged daughter. My daughter is knocking on similar doors now and hence the discussion turned on to parenting growing up kids.
 
He mentioned that for the first time he allowed his daughter to go for a school trip with overnight stay arranged by the school. I am still worried and never allow my child but his story was compelling enough to make me take a SMARTER decision for future.
 
As you are aware, most schools do not allow children to carry a phone and definitely not for excursions for the fear of photography and excess gaming. So was the case for his daughter’s school. So he went to the school and spoke to the teacher in charge for the trip and convinced her in the following way:
 
My Friend(referred as MF from now): Ma’am, I want my daughter to go, but feeling unsafe, though I trust your school. Can I give her a phone?
 
Teacher: No way can I break the school protocol.
 
MF: What if I pay for the expenses and find a solution in which neither will you break the school protocol or the rule and I will feel more SECURE?
 
My friend here convinced the teacher to allow him to subscribe a paid app on her smartphone promising her that he will never call her or try calling her. The teacher agreed and he subscribed and installed the software on her phone, added her to his group on the software app on his phone and requested her to keep her phone on.
 
What happened after that can be seen in the following photographs taken from his phone right from his daughter boarding the bus with the teacher, onwards to a far-flung place in Maharashtra and back.
MIFON FAMILY SAFETY
MIFON FAMILY SAFETY
 
 
 Growing kids often want free air and breathing space independent of their parents. But here is an example of how technology can be used in a  SMARTER way ensuring no policing at the same time ensuring SECURITY.
 
It also made me think that it’s possibly the best way to safety-track our “elderly parents” residing in a different city than us without disturbing them.
 
So when are you getting SMARTER?
 
PS: Opinions are personal to the author and can be questioned…he would like to respond back.
 
 There are many reasons observed on traffic media sources leading in or taking one out of the social media sites like Facebook, Twitter etc. as well as professional media sites like Linkedin etc. The following is based on the names mentioned above as they are possibly the most renowned/commonly used ones.
 
Let’s start with Facebook and see the broad category in which people post:
  1. Opinions
  2. Price offers
  3. Pictures
  4. Featured articles(a serious matter)
  5. Jokes (i will not want to talk/analyze on this)
To one’s surprise, the highest viewed are photographs and subsequent analysis shows that more than 90% come back to post their own photo’s within the next 1 month. This includes vacation photo’s as well. The ratio tilt by gender is very high in favor of female posters, not that men are far behind(simply relatively less)
 
Twitter: It’s for celebrities mainly….common man’s tweets are hardly read.
 
Linked-in: People usually post
  1. Featured articles(serious matters)
  2. Job posts
 
While job posts have the highest hits, the featured articles are also read by many but the difference absolute value is #2 receivers multiples of thousands of one for LinkedIn.
 
To my understanding sharing photo’s is not safe for two reasons.
  1. many people use your photo to open fake accounts….starting of a crime.
  2. It leads to unhealthy competition which can risk your life(as per point 1.) as well as your competing friends. 
and guess what the rate at which point 1 and point 4 (pertaining to Facebook are)…few thousand times less clicked than point 3. Point 2 gets significant clicks but the output is near zero as they are paid ads and the algorithm is basis what you recently searched or what you have already procured.
 
Strange isn’t it? It Clearly means our way of social media interaction needs to be re-looked upon with focus on knowing the person, understanding his opinions, analyze the person learn from her/his articles(positive or negative) and so on.
 
Therefore I would like to conclude be Positive, Think SMARTER and be SECURE from now when you go to the social media sites!!!

 

The author writes and analyses blog posts. He has no bias for countries/Geographies, Gender, and Age. He has definitely no bias for any Religion. He would like to answer your queries.

Think Smarter when you Think Insurance!

 
 
If you watch Detective Movies or a Crime Series, this question often pops up: Is a high life insurance cover an overhead or threat to your life or a security cover for your family?
 Are You Blinking?
Similarly, what does your car insurance offer you, only damages claim? Or safety against the loss of the car?
 
Have you ever gone through the hassle of claiming insurance for a major accident or a claim against the theft of a car? Forget the hassle and the running around, how much time later you get back the money? Months or years?
 
That’s possibly the reason why most people ignore buying insurance for their phones, which is one of the most precious possession.
 
So why insure something that might not have that big an impact on your phone loss would. Worried about the hassles and running around for a 10k product forgetting it can cause millions of losses to you. What if your phone had something which could itself catch the thief? 
 
You then can quickly settle expenses with the proof that its stolen, along with the thieves photograph and location…… read the following story, where the thief, for the fear of police and insurance companies interrogation preferred to return the stolen phone at https://www.mifon.mobi/ashmitatruestory/ ….and simply make your smartphone SMARTER.
 
That’s why you should yourself behave SMARTER and decide what needs insurance the most? It’s not whats urgent or whats important. The SMARTER way to think is whats urgent and important.
 
Think Smarter when you Think insurance!
 
Any discussions on this topic is most welcome and I as the writer would love to have my opinion challenged. You never know, your questions might open new areas of understanding for m
 Money: Can we survive without it? Just the other day I met a bright college student. In my discussion, the topic of the importance of money came up. I told him to decide what he wants to achieve in life with money. Earn that much and spend that much, as like electricity money cannot be stored.
Fame: In the same discussion I also asked him about fame. As a youngster to him, fame was being a star and a crowd puller. My argument was “ is it also not a threat puller”? is it not something that makes you become restless for more fame and one slip you are out of the reckoning forever.
Identity: this was the last topic that came up. I asked him to define identity. He tried in many ways but what came up were like, whats his name, his date of birth, Parents name, school/college name, likes and hobbies and so on….
I summarized in one word…. your identity is nothing but data, a collection of bits of data about your life, which makes you identifiable. That’s the most important aspect of life and therefore should be safeguarded in every possible way. 
Think of it, with social media and chat sites, all your data is in open domain….with all users today using smartphones even data on your likes and dislikes and even photographs of your family member are in open domain, with your well-wishers as well as your not so well-wishers.
Hence all smartphone users should make them safer by making their smartphones smarter. Think of one solution and not in bits and pieces to achieve it! Your identity would be safe….
Any discussions on this topic are most welcome and I as the writer would love to have my opinion challenged. You never know, your questions might open new areas of understanding for me.
PS: Don, the author of this post is a person who  is just short of reaching a half-century in age and is still fighting for his identity.Opinions are with his experience and need not always be true 

Unlike yesterday when we could lock our properties, close the doors and lock the gate to feel our home is secured, or when we took “approved cars”, drank water from taps with “drinking water “ board provided to feel secure…..the world has changed today.

Whether it’s for good or bad, data and digitization of records have taken over print and moving forward it will continue this way and more and more data will engulf us.

Today, I see many people screaming about data security provided by Aadhaar card. The medium used is Facebook and WhatsApp. Question is we are doubting our government and showing our non-acceptance of the government law on a medium that’s neither secure nor belongs to our country…..for all you know, it helps terrorists to track people to build networks!!!!

Just like physical security means your property, your home and yourself, today mobile security is just not about the data…. it’s about the data, the physical phone and your family(whose safety you care for the most).

Coming from the virus impacted Dos/Windows PC background days, we feel Data security is about Antivirus…. it’s actually not so. How many viruses have one seen on Android or iOS that command 100% of the global market together today?

Think beyond anti-virus or anti-malware when it comes to mobile security, as the threats come from different angle. It’s about people trying to steal your phone- some to misuse your data, some to sell the handset and make a quick buck, but more importantly think about protecting your family using your phone and staying connected all the time.

Look for an app that helps you achieve all, did you find one? Any discussions on this topic are most welcome and I as the writer would love to have my opinion challenged. You never know, your questions might open new areas of understanding for me.

 

PS: The writer being of Indian origin, some examples used are relevant to India only

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