Blog Entries from 05/2012
As London hangs out the buntings and prepares for street parties to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II's 60 years on the throne with her Diamond Jubilee, we thought it would be fun to look back at how technology has changed over those last 60 years (and admittedly, beyond that!).
When the Queen began her reign back in 1952, the world looked a lot different. Her primary mode of communication with her constituents was the radio during her first few years on the throne. According to a recent article that appeared in the Telegraph, "in 1953, after television cameras were allowed into Westminster Abbey to record the coronation – the popularity of the young queen prompted sales of half a million extra TV sets in the weeks running up to the ceremony." Through the years, as technology has changed, the Queen's methods of communication and outreach have significantly changed. Today, Her Majesty has her own Facebook and Twitter accounts (not surprisingly, with a team of social media experts making updates on her behalf), and is able to reach a much broader audience and provide information on a near real-time basis.
Times have changed. There is little doubt that the hedge fund industry has evolved in recent years with the rise of new regulations (e.g. Dodd-Frank) and the emergence of outsourcing and cloud computing, particularly. These changes have affected the way many firms do business on both operational and technology levels.
But what effect do these changes have for the person responsible for technology at a hedge fund or investment firm? As a Chief Technology Officer (or comparable role: Director of IT, Chief Information Officer, etc.), one has historically been responsible for day-to-day IT functions and routine technology refreshes. But as the industry has experienced rapid change over the last several years, so too have the CTOs and their responsibilities.
InformationWeek recently released the findings from its 2012 Mobile Security Survey which examined the mobile security technology trends and strategies employed at over 300 organizations across North America. Of this group, 86% currently allow their employees to use personally-owned devices for business purposes or are in the process of adopting policies which allow this practice.
With the rapidly growing popularity of this so-called BYOD trend, one might assume that IT departments across the country would be tightening up mobile device security policies to keep pace. Unfortunately, this does not appear to be the case. According to the InformationWeek survey, an alarming number of companies are simply making minor adjustments to their policies as opposed to implementing new ground rules that better reflect the capabilities of the smartphones, tablets and laptops their employees are using.
Why is this such an important issue?
In last week's article, The Cloud Trifecta: Scalability, Cost and Efficiency, we looked at the top three winning reasons hedge funds are gravitating towards the cloud. In today’s article, we will examine further why firms are outsourcing the IT management of their applications to a third-party cloud providers and the questions you should be asking. As validation of this trend, leading application vendors including Advent, ConvergEx, Tradar and Ledgex Systems have introduced efforts to certify third-party hosting providers.
First up, the reasons hedge funds are considering using the cloud for application hosting.
Just last week, we talked about network security threats and the best practices your firm can employ to keep information safe. You probably think that your security efforts should be focused on the outside - on external risks. But the reality is that the biggest security threat to your firm could be the person sitting right next to you.
It was mentioned by both eSentire’s Steve McGeown and Eze Castle’s Steve Schoener during our recent webinar that internal threats to security are just as likely to occur when it comes to cybercrime and security breaches.
A recent Wall Street Journal article, IT Protects the Company, Who Protects IT, included statistics from a PricewaterhouseCoopers survey of executives about economic crimes. Several jarring statistics were provided, including:
Taking a page from the Cloud Forum (quite literally), today we look at the top three winning reasons hedge funds are gravitating towards the cloud. Not surprisingly, these reasons center around increased efficiencies, improved technology environment and cost savings.
Scalable, Flexible and Available
The cloud offers firms the option of scalability without the serious financial commitments required for infrastructure purchase and maintenance. With cloud services there is no vendor lock-in or implied commitment beyond duration so firms have the flexibility to easily evolve their IT environment.
Another benefit is the ability to seamlessly add more users and/or computing resources to match the firm’s requirements. A hedge fund private cloud can deliver the infrastructure, bandwidth and network resiliency to accommodate business requirements for high speed access, storage and applications.
As part of our ongoing thought leadership, we often host educational webinars on a variety of topics relevant to hedge fund operations and technology. For our most recent webinar, we decided to dive deeper into the topic of security, as it still remains one of the biggest priorities and concerns for hedge funds.
Speaking on the webinar were two great security experts: Steve McGeown, VP of Marketing and Product Management at eSentire, and Steve Schoener, VP of Client Technology here at Eze Castle Integration.
Below is a short summary of the key points addressed by our expert speakers.
It's no secret that cloud computing is the hottest topic in the world of investment technology right now (we've certainly been talking about it frequently!). We often hear from our hedge fund clients that they are very interested in this technology, but feel they still have additional learning to do before making an informed decision as to whether it is the right option for their firms.
So, as part of our ongoing effort to provide educational content to our loyal Hedge IT readers, we have compiled a list of the most commonly used cloud computing terms. We hope this A-to-Z "dictionary" will serve as a valuable reference guide for you in your exploration into the world of cloud technology!
More than 100 hedge fund technology and operations professionals attended our recent Hedge Fund Cloud Summit in New York, and we're pleased to report that the feedback was overwhelmingly positive.
Not only was the Cloud Summit the first event of its kind, but it was also where we debuted Eze Castle TV! Some of our attendees were brave enough to face the camera and tell us what they thought of our event. Watch the video below to see what they had to say!
So…drumroll please… We are excited to unveil the newest member of the Eze Castle Integration thought leadership family – Cloud Forum!
On the Cloud Forum you will find rich information:
What is Cloud Computing
Operating in the Cloud
Cloud Computing Dictionary A-Z
Cloud Resources: Articles, Videos and Events