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Download Weekly – New Zealand tech slipping behind | #cybersecurity | #cyberattack | #hacking | #aihp


A report from Tuanz and
Vodafone warns NZ is slipping behind in
technology.

Aotearoa’s Digital Priorities in
2022,
a report from Tuanz, sponsored and promoted by
Vodafone, suggests New Zealand is at a “tipping point”
and “slipping behind the world on key measures of digital
economic performance”.

The report pulls on data from the
Portulans Institute Network Readiness
Index
which benchmarks and ranks nations on a range
of technology measures.

Scandinavian nations, the
Netherlands and Singapore rank at the top of the list. New
Zealand comes in a 20 in the list, down from 16 a year
earlier.

The report puts New Zealand at 42 in the world
for access to technology and at 56 for cyber
security
.

Shortage in hardware, products and
skills

It said New Zealand companies face shortages
when finding hardware, tech products and digitally skilled
workers.

Other problems include stretched technical
resources are stretched and industry leaders running in
challenges due to skills gaps, as they struggle to retain or
attract staff.

Tuanz chief executive Craig Young says the
nation could add $46 billion in economic value by 2030 with
digital transformation in non-technology companies, but if
we continue to perform poorly against competing nations it
will be hard to achieve that.

He says New Zealand is doing
work to improve the sector, but other countries are doing
things better.

“New Zealand must find ways to bring new
skills into the industry or risk an ongoing brake on the
aspirations of our companies to compete in this increasingly
digital world.

Developing talent

“While we
will always need to bring skills in from offshore, our
companies and government also need to be aligned in
developing homegrown talent, especially in under represented
groups such as women, Māori and Pasifika,” he
said.

Vodafone chief enterprise officer Lindsay Zwart says
a focus on new tech could help: “Business leaders are
being affected by talent shortages and supply chain delays
but can drive efficiencies by using cloud and software as a
service based services which reduce reliance on in-country
resources and hardware.”

You can read a commentary
on the Portulans Institute Network Readiness Index on the
web site later today.


Sky calms media
acquisition speculation

A statement issued by Sky
company secretary James Bishop to the NZX confirms the
broadcaster and internet service provider is eyeing a
possible takeover of the remaining parts of
Mediaworks.

Sky says: “It is currently in exclusive
negotiations with Mediaworks shareholders regarding a
potential acquisition of MediaWorks’ radio and out of home
advertising business”.

It goes on to warn the likelihood
of a transaction is uncertain.

Earlier reports suggest Sky
talked to the current owners of MediaWorks: Oaktree, a
US-based private equity firm and Quadrant, an Australian
media business.

MediaWorks sold its television business,
including TV3, to the US-based Discovery in 2020. It kept
the radio networks and an outdoor advertising
business.


Internal Affairs works with
Australians to fight spam

Te Tari Taiwhenua
Department of Internal Affairs and the Australian
Communications and Media Authority plan to work more closely
together as they deal with spam and scam email and txt
messages.

This week the pair signed a fresh memorandum
of understanding which will see them share information
and co-operate on enforcement.

Secretary for Internal
Affairs, Paul James says; “…working collaboratively with
other international jurisdictions is a key way to tackle
this issue”.

ACMA chair Nerida O’Loughlin says:
“Research we conducted in 2021 shows 98 percent of
Australian adults receive unsolicited communications on
their phone. The recent ‘FluBot’ malware scam affected
both Australians and New Zealanders, and information sharing
with our New Zealand counterparts has aided the ACMA’s
spam and scam work.


Akamai reports on rise of
Ransomware-as-a-Service

A report
from Akamai Technologies on Ransomware-as-a-Service
attacks suggests gangs are disrupting supply chains and
having an impact on critical infrastructure.

The Akamai
Ransomware Threat Report looks at recent attacks and builds
a picture of the attacker’s methodologies, tools and
techniques.

It says that one ransomware
attacker, the Conti gang, targets business with US$10 to
$250 million in revenue, where it finds the most success:
“The gang’s tactics, techniques, and procedures are
well-known, but highly effective – a sobering reminder of
the arsenal that is at the disposal of other hackers. But
also that these attacks can be prevented with the right
mitigation.”


Spark’s Qrious unit hires
Laing as CTO

Qrious has promoted director of AI and
data science Christopher Laing to become the business’
chief technology officer. Laing was previously head of
AI at Xero and worked previously as the global lead data
scientist at Allianz in Germany.


In other
news…

Vodafone completed moving
its operations to SAP cloud. The telco need to develop its
own IT infrastructure after separating from its UK parent
company.

Gartner says the
international market for Infrastructure as a
Service
public cloud services grew 41 percent in
2021. Amazon Web Services remains the dominant player
with a shade under 40 percent of the market. Microsoft is in
second place with around 20 percent. The top five SaaS
brands account for 80 percent of the total.

Accounting
software company MYOB released figures
showing New Zealand’s small and medium sized enterprises
invested half a billion dollars in digital technology last
year. It says half the companies report their digital
systems are hindering not helping the business.

After a
brief working-from-home fuelled revival, PC shipments have
resumed their long-term decline although sales remain above
their pre-pandemic level. IDC
reports it expects PC shipments to fall
8.2 percent in 2022. Among the reasons: Lockdowns, war and
inflation.


New Zealand tech slipping behind was
first posted at
billbennett.co.nz.

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