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Tech News

15-09-2017
Innovation and Technology Venture Fund

The Government has launched the Innovation and Technology Venture Fund on 15-09-2017. It is now open for application by venture capital funds to become co-investment partners (Deadline: 15-01-2018). A briefing session will be held on 03-10-2017 at the Hong Kong Science Park. Interested venture capital funds are welcome to attend.

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19-02-2018
Airports Authority of India to boost aviation security with computed tomography technology

Smiths Detection, a company specializing in threat detection and screening technologies for aviation, ports and borders, urban security and military markets, announced on 7 February 2018 that the Airports Authority of India (AAI) has placed an order for multiple CTX 9800 DSi systems at a combined value of over USD50 million.Through a global competitive tender process conducted by AAI, Smiths Detection won the bid to install and integrate high-speed explosives detection systems (EDS) for hold-baggage screening at 11 sites across nine airports in India, including Chennai International Airport and Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport in Kolkata.“The Indian market is forecast to be the third-largest aviation market in the world by 2026, so security is a mission-critical factor in enabling India’s airports to be future-ready. Smiths Detection is honored to partner with AAI - supporting airports to stay ahead of the evolving threat landscape with a technological solution that is fully compliant with regulatory requirements,” said Jerome de Chassey, General Manager of Smiths Detection in India.AAI manages a total of 125 airports in India and is responsible for creating, upgrading, maintaining and managing civil aviation infrastructure both on the ground and in the air. The organization is also responsible for building new terminals for the many new small airports under development by the Government of India. Working in partnership with Smiths Detection, AAI will implement ECAC Standard 3 screening of hold baggage at Level 1 for inline systems across the country. This complies with regulations set by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), the regulatory authority for civil aviation security in India.Powered by computed tomography (CT) technology, CTX 9800 can be configured to deliver throughput of up to 1,800 bags per hour and can be tailored to meet the specific needs of any legacy or new baggage-handling system. Approved by the European Civil Aviation Conference as meeting Standard 3 requirements, CTX 9800 is also certified by the U.S. Transportation Security Administration and the Civil Aviation Administration of China.

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19-02-2018
Aim for AI projects with built-in transparency advices Gartner

Meaningful artificial intelligence (AI) deployments are just beginning to take place, according to Gartner’s 2018 CIO Agenda Survey shows that four percent of CIOs have implemented AI, while a further 46% have developed plans to do so."Despite huge levels of interest in AI technologies, current implementations remain at quite low levels," said Whit Andrews, research vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. "However, there is potential for strong growth as CIOs begin piloting AI programs through a combination of buy, build and outsource efforts."For finance services, Gartner predicts that, by 2022, enterprise AI projects with built-in transparency will be twice as likely to receive funding from CIOs. This prediction is particularly important for the office of finance, due to the transparency and auditability necessary for finance applications. The office of finance requires that the methods used to estimate results be known. Exception handling in conversational systems that address financial matters is therefore likely to use auditable known-decision trees.As with most emerging or unfamiliar technologies, early adopters are facing many obstacles to the progress of AI in their organizations. Gartner lists four lessons that have emerged from these early AI projects:Aim Low at First"Don’t fall into the trap of primarily seeking hard outcomes, such as direct financial gains, with AI projects. In general, it’s best to start AI projects with a small scope and aim for 'soft' outcomes, such as process improvements, customer satisfaction or financial benchmarking," said Andrews.Expect AI projects to produce, at best, lessons that will help with subsequent, larger experiments, pilots and implementations. In some organizations, a financial target will be a requirement to start the project.Andrew suggested that in this situation, it is best to set the target as low as possible. "Think of targets in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars, understand what you’re trying to accomplish on a small scale, and only then pursue more-dramatic benefits,” he explained.Focus on Augmenting People, Not Replacing ThemBig technological advances are often historically associated with a reduction in staff head count. While reducing labor costs is attractive to business executives, it is likely to create resistance from those whose jobs appear to be at risk. In pursuing this way of thinking, organizations can miss out on real opportunities to use the technology effectively."We advise our clients that the most transformational benefits of AI in the near term will arise from using it to enable employees to pursue higher-value activities," added Andrews.Gartner predicts that by 2020, 20% of organizations will dedicate workers to monitoring and guiding neural networks."Leave behind notions of vast teams of infinitely duplicable 'smart agents' able to execute tasks just like humans. It will be far more productive to engage with workers on the front line. Get them excited and engaged with the idea that AI-powered decision support can enhance and elevate the work they do every day,” Andrews explained.Plan for Knowledge TransferAccording to Gartner most organizations aren't well-prepared for implementing AI. They lack internal skills in data science and plan to rely to a high degree on external providers to fill the gap. Fifty-three percent surveyed CIO rated their own ability to mine and exploit data as "limited" — the lowest level.The analyst predicts that through 2022, 85% of AI projects will deliver erroneous outcomes due to bias in data, algorithms or the teams responsible for managing them."Data is the fuel for AI, so organizations need to prepare now to store and manage even larger amounts of data for AI initiatives," said Jim Hare, research vice president at Gartner. "Relying mostly on external suppliers for these skills is not an ideal long-term solution. Therefore, ensure that early AI projects help transfer knowledge from external experts to your employees, and build up your organization’s in-house capabilities before moving on to large-scale projects."Choose Transparent AI SolutionsAI projects will often involve software or systems from external service providers. It’s important that some insight into how decisions are reached is built into any service agreement. "Whether an AI system produces the right answer is not the only concern," said Andrews. "Executives need to understand why it is effective, and offer insights into its reasoning when it’s not."Although it may not always be possible to explain all the details of an advanced analytical model, such as a deep neural network, it’s important to at least offer some kind of visualization of the potential choices. In fact, in situations where decisions are subject to regulation and auditing, it may be a legal requirement to provide this kind of transparency. Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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19-02-2018
Aim for AI projects with built-in transparency advices Gartner

Meaningful artificial intelligence (AI) deployments are just beginning to take place, according to Gartner’s 2018 CIO Agenda Survey shows that four percent of CIOs have implemented AI, while a further 46% have developed plans to do so."Despite huge levels of interest in AI technologies, current implementations remain at quite low levels," said Whit Andrews, research vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. "However, there is potential for strong growth as CIOs begin piloting AI programs through a combination of buy, build and outsource efforts."For finance services, Gartner predicts that, by 2022, enterprise AI projects with built-in transparency will be twice as likely to receive funding from CIOs. This prediction is particularly important for the office of finance, due to the transparency and auditability necessary for finance applications. The office of finance requires that the methods used to estimate results be known. Exception handling in conversational systems that address financial matters is therefore likely to use auditable known-decision trees.As with most emerging or unfamiliar technologies, early adopters are facing many obstacles to the progress of AI in their organizations. Gartner lists four lessons that have emerged from these early AI projects:Aim Low at First"Don’t fall into the trap of primarily seeking hard outcomes, such as direct financial gains, with AI projects. In general, it’s best to start AI projects with a small scope and aim for 'soft' outcomes, such as process improvements, customer satisfaction or financial benchmarking," said Andrews.Expect AI projects to produce, at best, lessons that will help with subsequent, larger experiments, pilots and implementations. In some organizations, a financial target will be a requirement to start the project.Andrew suggested that in this situation, it is best to set the target as low as possible. "Think of targets in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars, understand what you’re trying to accomplish on a small scale, and only then pursue more-dramatic benefits,” he explained.Focus on Augmenting People, Not Replacing ThemBig technological advances are often historically associated with a reduction in staff head count. While reducing labor costs is attractive to business executives, it is likely to create resistance from those whose jobs appear to be at risk. In pursuing this way of thinking, organizations can miss out on real opportunities to use the technology effectively."We advise our clients that the most transformational benefits of AI in the near term will arise from using it to enable employees to pursue higher-value activities," added Andrews.Gartner predicts that by 2020, 20% of organizations will dedicate workers to monitoring and guiding neural networks."Leave behind notions of vast teams of infinitely duplicable 'smart agents' able to execute tasks just like humans. It will be far more productive to engage with workers on the front line. Get them excited and engaged with the idea that AI-powered decision support can enhance and elevate the work they do every day,” Andrews explained.Plan for Knowledge TransferAccording to Gartner most organizations aren't well-prepared for implementing AI. They lack internal skills in data science and plan to rely to a high degree on external providers to fill the gap. Fifty-three percent surveyed CIO rated their own ability to mine and exploit data as "limited" — the lowest level.The analyst predicts that through 2022, 85% of AI projects will deliver erroneous outcomes due to bias in data, algorithms or the teams responsible for managing them."Data is the fuel for AI, so organizations need to prepare now to store and manage even larger amounts of data for AI initiatives," said Jim Hare, research vice president at Gartner. "Relying mostly on external suppliers for these skills is not an ideal long-term solution. Therefore, ensure that early AI projects help transfer knowledge from external experts to your employees, and build up your organization’s in-house capabilities before moving on to large-scale projects."Choose Transparent AI SolutionsAI projects will often involve software or systems from external service providers. It’s important that some insight into how decisions are reached is built into any service agreement. "Whether an AI system produces the right answer is not the only concern," said Andrews. "Executives need to understand why it is effective, and offer insights into its reasoning when it’s not."Although it may not always be possible to explain all the details of an advanced analytical model, such as a deep neural network, it’s important to at least offer some kind of visualization of the potential choices. In fact, in situations where decisions are subject to regulation and auditing, it may be a legal requirement to provide this kind of transparency. Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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15-02-2018
Celent says time for insurers to cook up new recipe for insurance

What is the cost difference to launch a new insurance product? If you spend US$1 delivering a specific set of functionality in the traditional approach, what amount would be needed to deliver exactly the same functionality using the new development approach?This is the question raised by Celent as it sought to understand the pressures insurers are facing in the run up to become digital businesses.The pressure on insurers to become digital businesses has switched up a gear. According to Michael Fitzgerald and Tom Scales of Celent the adoption of cloud, application programming interfaces (APIs), and microservices architectures and the increasing use of customer-centered design, agile, and DevOps techniques are fundamentally changing the way insurance companies develop products.Celent analysts believe that incumbent insurers face increasing challenges and opportunities from concurrent forces. Dramatically changing customer expectations and low investment returns threaten both property and casualty and life insurers. Declining participation rates and indifference by millennial consumers restrict growth in life companies. Technologies such as driverless cars and sensors (Internet of Things) promise to shrink revenue in P&C.Most insurers are not currently positioned to respond.However, a new combination of technology and technique is evolving in response to insurers’ needs. Celent identifies six aspects which are fundamental to this new recipe. Three deal with technical architecture: cloud, microservices, and APIs. Three are techniques: customer-centered design, agile implementation, and DevOps management.How do incumbent insurers catch up and overtake the innovators? They start with a better understanding of what steps they can take. This report will be a first step toward that goal. Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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15-02-2018
BNY Mellon says Seoul Foreign Exchange Trading Room

Global foreign exchange market participants seeking exposure to Korean Won (KRW) will benefit from a more efficient pricing and enhanced liquidity. This is the promise BNY Mellon is making with the opening of a Foreign Exchange (FX) Trading Room in Seoul this year.“BNY Mellon is strengthening our capabilities in Korea to provide a more convenient and comprehensive KRW FX trading service to our domestic and international clients and to help them conduct their business more efficiently,” said Mark Militello, Head of Markets for BNY Mellon in Asia Pacific.BNY Mellon’s Seoul FX Trading Room provides liquidity both to domestic clients in Korea looking for exposure to the major global currencies as well as to counterparties seeking to trade KRW across Asia-Pacific and around the globe. Clients transacting through the Trading Room are able to execute strategies using a variety of instruments, including spot, FX forwards and non-deliverable forwards."In addition, a number of unique service capabilities spanning the investment lifecycle offered by BNY Mellon will add diversity in the local market and enable us to be a stronger partner for our Asian counterparties as we help them fulfill their strategic goals," says Ji Sang Don, Country Executive for BNY Mellon in Korea. Caption: Iage from iStockPhoto

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15-02-2018
LianLian International to use Ripple for instant payments in China

International money services plans to use Ripple’s to process real-time cross-border payments on behalf of merchants and consumers, including invoice payments and e-commerce payments, into China. LianLian International will use RippleNet to process payments into China instantly, efficiently and at a low cost.LianLian International will accept payments from overseas financial institutions using RippleNet, and disburse these payments to Chinese recipients. It will also provide a connection into China for other RippleNet members, supporting transaction flows between merchants and consumers in China and other markets — driving payment volumes higher. “Cross-border payments related to China’s e-commerce market reached $1.07 trillion in 2017. There is a huge opportunity to make these payments quicker and more cost-efficient,” said Emi Yoshikawa, Director of Joint Venture Partnerships, Ripple.“With RippleNet, LianLian will now be able to provide merchants and consumers with on-demand payments, which they weren’t able to before. We look forward to connecting other RippleNet members to LianLian.”Arthur Zhu, Chairman of the Board, LianLian International, said: “With RippleNet, we will further enhance that experience and increase our market share by offering customers instant, blockchain-powered payments across the 19 currencies that we currently support.” Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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15-02-2018
International Olympic Committee launches analytics tool to drive precision health at the Olympics

GE Healthcare announced on 5 February 2018 a new advanced analytics solution built for the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 and to be used for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. Designed in partnership with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the tool integrates valuable information, such as athlete injury and illness data, with venue, sport and training procedures, to help ensure clinicians have a comprehensive view of a patient’s health and can make an informed, rapid treatment decision. The insights also aim to inform long-term improvements to health and safety at the Olympic Games.The GE Athlete Management Solution (AMS) collects multiple kinds of data, including imaging scans, patient vitals, and venue, event and sport-specific information, and provides real-time dashboards that can help inform medical staff and allow them to personalize treatment for athletes while identifying trends in injury and illness across the Games. For example, the tool can flag a “hot spot” where multiple injuries are occurring, or a spike in illness among spectators who attended an event at a specific venue. The tool is cloud-based, embedded with appropriate security controls, and enables remote entry of and access to data by clinicians anywhere and at any time – whether they are in a Polyclinic, the facility that provides care to anyone involved in the Games, a local hospital, or their hotel room.“Through digital transformation, the IOC is pursuing its mission of helping to prevent injuries among our world-class athletes,” said Dr. Richard Budgett, Medical and Scientific Director for the IOC. “With 40 sports across the Olympic Games and Olympic Winter Games, each athlete requires unique healthcare monitoring and care. AMS will provide information that helps clinicians personalize training and treatment, so Olympians are best positioned to compete.”The solution reflects GE Healthcare’s commitment to precision health, a holistic approach to patient care which encompasses diagnostics, therapeutics and monitoring to help ensure that appropriate actions are taken at the right time for each individual patient. In the context of the Games, this means considering differences in athlete’s medical histories, training environments and sport.With the multilingual AMS, team doctors from different countries can work and collaborate with other physicians in their native language, all with the click of a button. Supported languages include English, French, Arabic, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, German, Spanish and Korean. All AMS terms and data were edited and validated by native speakers to help ensure proper and accurate translation. Additional information such as medications approved for prescription is also integrated into the solution. All features aim to inform the IOC and clinicians so that they have the ability to rapidly and effectively address injury and illness, with the goal of driving the best possible performance by athletes and the best possible experience for spectators.“Olympians train for many years to represent their nations at the Games,” said Dr. Jorg Debatin, Vice President & Chief Technology Officer for GE Healthcare. “Their Herculean efforts must be matched with superhuman clinical speed and quality. AMS helps clinicians do just that – by making data and actionable insights readily available to the treating clinicians.”Representatives from the United States Center for Disease Control, the Korean Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Public Health England Centre of Infectious Disease Surveillance and Control have all been trained on AMS and will use the solution to support public health monitoring during the Games.

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15-02-2018
Turning ‘Smart Nation’ from project to product

Envision, a global digital energy platform company, is partnering with four Singapore organizations to develop an innovation ecosystem that will enable the digital transition.The partnerships with Ascendas-Singbridge Group, Sunseap Group, the Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore (SERIS), and the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), precede the opening of Envision’s Global Digital Hub in Singapore. The Hub aims to foster innovation across smart city applications, intelligent IoT R&D and talents, while pursuing commercial excellence.“Envision is inspired by the Singapore Smart Nation commitment. We are excited to turn ‘Smart Nation’ from project into product, through an intelligent IoT platform and ecosystem. The collaboration with like-minded partners is accelerating the journey. ” said Lei Zhang, CEO of Envision.The Memorandum of Understanding between Ascendas-Singbridge and Envision will see teams from both parties collaborating to develop smart building solutions with Envision’s EnOS IoT Platform and ecosystem. Ascendas-Singbridge will provide business knowledge and test-bedding facilities for a pilot trial of the co-developed solutions at Galaxis, an Ascendas-Singbridge development at one-north. Ascendas-Singbridge’s coworking space at Singapore Science Park, thebridge, is currently the home to Envision’s Global Digital Hub.Situating the Global Digital Hub in Singapore’s prime location also positions Envision to incubate locally and springboard globally, especially into the APAC energy market.Manohar Khiatani, Deputy Group CEO of Ascendas-Singbridge, said: “We are delighted to embark on our partnership with Envision. As Asia’s leading sustainable urban development and business space solutions provider, Ascendas-Singbridge strives to develop smart business parks by incorporating transformational initiatives and sustainable building solutions for our tenants and community.”The collaboration between Envision and Sunseap Group will enable both parties to jointly develop an IoT platform to optimize Sunseap’s current and future portfolio of solar PV projects, which includes projects of rooftop, ground-mounted and floating variety in Singapore and Asia Pacific. The platform will also incorporate demand side energy management technologies and explore the feasibility of building innovative solar applications.Frank Phuan, Sunseap Group’s Co-Founder and Director, said: “We are excited to partner with Envision to jointly develop innovative clean energy solutions for our clients in a reliable and cost-effective manner. The partnership will allow us to tap Envision’s technologies to foster clean energy innovations in the growth markets of Asia.”EnOS platform will also be further improved with the support of SERIS, with a focus on weather predictions, over different time horizons and smart monitoring, operation and maintenance of large photovoltaic (PV) systems. Beyond this, the agreement will enable both parties to cooperate in other potential R&D activities. “SERIS aims to develop, test and commercialize innovative technologies in Singapore and then market them elsewhere in Asia Pacific and the world. Teaming up with the global intelligent IoT leader in the energy space helps to further test the solutions developed by SERIS and to disseminate them on a multi-national scale. We are excited about this collaboration and the mutual benefits arising from having joint teams working on some of the most advanced solutions for the solar energy sector”, said Dr. Thomas Reindl, Deputy CEO of SERIS.Together with NTU’s research strengths in developing industry-relevant energy solutions, Envision will be able to explore the possibility of research in building load forecasting, battery management system, and integrating the EnOS platform into NTU’s Eco Campus plans.Professor Lam Khin Yong, NTU’s Vice President (Research), said, “NTU is pleased to collaborate with Envision to explore innovative and sustainable energy solutions. By tapping on NTU’s extensive expertise in digitalization opportunities across the energy value chain, I am confident that this partnership will enhance the development of sustainability solutions that can be implemented within Asia and beyond.” Caption: MOU Signing Ceremony between Envision and Ascendas-Singbridge

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15-02-2018
HKTVmall to accept PayPal payments

HKTVmall customers can now use their PayPal accounts to make purchases on the online shopping mall. The agreement further expands the range of goods and services that PayPal account holders can effortlessly pay for, adding fresh groceries, household products and electronics to their local shopping options.Eligible purchases made with PayPal on HKTVmall can qualify for PayPal’s Buyer Protection and Refunded Returns services, providing additional peace of mind for shoppers.For HKTVmall, the addition of an easy-to-use, instantly recognizable and trusted payments partner can reassure customers and ease their path to completing desired transactions. This new level of convenience and added trust can help drive the conversion of visitors into buyers while also providing HKTVmall merchants with PayPal Seller Protection on eligible transactions.“We believe that online shopping is all about customer experience - starting from the shopping interface, payment, warehousing and logistics – we are talking about choices and services. With PayPal’s secure payments platform, we offer more payment options to customers, and hope that this can convert more browsers to buyers by providing one of the best possible online shopping experiences. This is crucial to our efforts in growing our business to become the best online shopping mall in Hong Kong,” said Ricky Wong, chairman of HKTV. PayPal’s senior director and general manager for Hong Kong, Korea and Taiwan, Soon Sze Meng noted that in Hong Kong there is an increase in digital means for consumers to transact online as well as on mobile. This will ultimately drive Hong Kong to its Smart City destination. Reflecting on this as an focus for PayPal, he added that “We are confident and will stay focused on what we do – innovating for our customers, and delivering agile and relevant payments solutions that businesses, consumers and partners require to improve operations or their way of life.” Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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15-02-2018
Four key lessons from pioneering AI projects

Meaningful artificial intelligence (AI) deployments are just beginning to take place, according to Gartner. Gartner’s 2018 CIO Agenda Survey finds that 4% of CIOs have implemented AI, while a further 46% have developed plans to do so."Despite huge levels of interest in AI technologies, current implementations remain at quite low levels," said Whit Andrews, research vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. "However, there is potential for strong growth as CIOs begin piloting AI programs through a combination of buy, build and outsource efforts."As with most emerging or unfamiliar technologies, early adopters are facing many obstacles to the progress of AI in their organizations. Gartner analysts have identified the following four lessons that have emerged from these early AI projects:       1. Aim low at first"Don’t fall into the trap of primarily seeking hard outcomes, such as direct financial gains, with AI projects," said Mr. Andrews. "In general, it’s best to start AI projects with a small scope and aim for 'soft' outcomes, such as process improvements, customer satisfaction or financial benchmarking." Expect AI projects to produce, at best, lessons that will help with subsequent, larger experiments, pilots and implementations. In some organizations, a financial target will be a requirement to start the project. “In this situation, set the target as low as possible," said Mr. Andrews. "Think of targets in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars, understand what you’re trying to accomplish on a small scale, and only then pursue more-dramatic benefits.”2. Focus on augmenting people, not replacing them Big technological advances are often historically associated with a reduction in staff head count. While reducing labor costs is attractive to business executives, it is likely to create resistance from those whose jobs appear to be at risk. In pursuing this way of thinking, organizations can miss out on real opportunities to use the technology effectively. "We advise our clients that the most transformational benefits of AI in the near term will arise from using it to enable employees to pursue higher-value activities," added Mr. Andrews. Gartner predicts that by 2020, 20% of organizations will dedicate workers to monitoring and guiding neural networks."Leave behind notions of vast teams of infinitely duplicable 'smart agents' able to execute tasks just like humans," said Mr. Andrews. “It will be far more productive to engage with workers on the front line. Get them excited and engaged with the idea that AI-powered decision support can enhance and elevate the work they do every day."3. Plan for knowledge transfer Conversations with Gartner clients reveal that most organizations aren't well-prepared for implementing AI. Specifically, they lack internal skills in data science and plan to rely to a high degree on external providers to fill the gap. Fifty-three percent of organizations in the CIO survey rated their own ability to mine and exploit data as "limited" — the lowest level.Gartner predicts that through 2022, 85% of AI projects will deliver erroneous outcomes due to bias in data, algorithms or the teams responsible for managing them.      "Data is the fuel for AI, so organizations need to prepare now to store and manage even larger amounts of data for AI initiatives," said Jim Hare, research vice president at Gartner. "Relying mostly on external suppliers for these skills is not an ideal long-term solution. Therefore, ensure that early AI projects help transfer knowledge from external experts to your employees, and build up your organization’s in-house capabilities before moving on to large-scale projects."4. Choose transparent AI solutionsAI projects will often involve software or systems from external service providers. It’s important that some insight into how decisions are reached is built into any service agreement. "Whether an AI system produces the right answer is not the only concern," said Mr. Andrews. "Executives need to understand why it is effective, and offer insights into its reasoning when it’s not."           Although it may not always be possible to explain all the details of an advanced analytical model, such as a deep neural network, it’s important to at least offer some kind of visualization of the potential choices. In fact, in situations where decisions are subject to regulation and auditing, it may be a legal requirement to provide this kind of transparency. 

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14-02-2018
Trust these branded websites - think again!

A recent Menlo Security report reveals that many of the supposedly safest neighborhoods of the Web are in fact risky places to visit. According to the report, 42% of the top 100,000 sites on the Web, as ranked by Alexa, are either using software that leaves them vulnerable to attack or have already been compromised in some way.    According to the findings, email hackers are using trusted hosting services to set up phishing sites, giving them safe-looking URLs. The “Business and Economy” category, for example, had more “known bad” sites that had been used to launch attacks or distribute malicious code than “Gambling.”  The results underscore Menlo's belief that in a world where no detection-based security technology is foolproof, it’s time for a new approach.   Singapore has not escaped the risks of cyber-attacks. In 2017, it was reported that leading academic intuitions such as National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University fell vulnerable to cyber-attacks. This comes on the heels of the Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI) and the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) proposed Cybersecurity Bill.The Menlo Security report has established that in Singapore, 18% of the top 50 sites, as ranked by Alexa are open to attacks or have already been compromised.     Kowsik Guruswamy, CTO at Menlo Security, said: “E-commerce and online banking are on the rise in Singapore, but so are phishing attacks and web malware. As such, it’s more important than ever for businesses, government, and individuals to understand the inherent risks of the Internet and email, and how cybercriminals are actively working to exploit traditional measures of trust, so they can better defend themselves against online threats.”Menlo Security's Singapore country manager Tony Kam added: “Menlo Security entered the Singapore market in mid 2016... when the risk of cyberattacks was on the rise and cybercriminals were getting more sophisticated. We put in a lot of effort in educating our target clients to fully appreciate our unique approach to protecting their company from malware and phishing attacks. With this latest 2018 Trust Hacking Report, we can reiterate the level of vulnerabilities faced by companies across many industries.”View the infographics for the findings of the report here. 

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14-02-2018
HKSTP helps Platysens accelerate commercialization

HKSTP has linked startup Platysens with La Salle Primary School and La Salle College to trial and further develop Platysens' audio swimming training technology

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14-02-2018
Future-proof technology policies key for APAC markets: ACCA

The Asia Cloud Computing Association has called on regulators and industry leaders to adopt policies that will prepare APAC's workforce for the digital economy

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14-02-2018
PLUS Malaysia to deploy Boost e-wallet at Ayer Keroh RSA

PLUS Malaysia Berhard (PMB) is the largest toll expressway operator in Malaysia. Rest and Service Areas (also known as the RSAs or R&R) provide travelers with a stop point during their long distance trip. RSAs can be found every 80 to 100 kilometers along these PMB operated expressways.     PLUS has partnered with mobile wallet provider, Boost, at the Ayer Keroh Rest and Service Area (Southbound) located at Ayer Keroh, Melaka at KM209.Datuk Azman Ismail, Managing Director of PLUS, said, “This collaboration between PLUS and Boost marks the first-ever homegrown digital mobile wallet to penetrate this segment towards our mission of uplifting the lifestyles of PLUS Business Partners into becoming an advanced digital society. It is important for corporations to embrace the technology frontier sooner rather than later as we leapfrog our way into the digital age. We’re excited to roll out this ambitious plan with a partner like Boost and hope that our PLUS Business Partners and Malaysian consumers can fully experience its benefits in their lifestyles.”The RSA is a common sight along PLUS Malaysia’s highways with footfall of up 1.45 million daily  visitors across 24 RSAs. The award-winning RSA located in Ayer Keroh, Melaka at KM209 (Southbound) on the North-South Expressway is the first to be converted to a cashless RSA. Through this pilot project, PLUS will be able to gauge and evaluate responses from PLUS Business Partners and highway users  to further improve its cashless payment initiatives on its highways.Boost says it wants to change the way Malaysian consumers transact by creating a seamless payment experience without cash or cards. To date, Boost has acquired over 800,000 users with online and offline merchants located in over 5,000 locations. Boost aims to dominate the e-wallet space by becoming the preferred e-wallet amongst Malaysians.The CEO of telecoms provider, Axiata Digital Services, Mohd Khairil Abdullah noted that its partnership with Boost and PLUS will bring more customers and traffic to PLUS Business Partners’ business, while reducing their risk and cost in cash management for their respective businesses.“The plan is even made possible with the help of our banking partner, Ambank with their quick and fast solution on settlement SLA to the PLUS Business Partners. Boost hopes to empower small businesses as we aim to form new frontiers in the digital economy to become a leading digital nation in the region,” he concluded. Caption: Image courtesy of PLUS

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14-02-2018
New cybersecurity measures to protect medical imaging devices required warns researchers

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) Malware Lab researchers are warning medical imaging device (MID) manufacturers and healthcare providers to be more diligent in protecting medical imaging equipment from cyber threats.In their new paper, “Know Your Enemy: Characteristics of Cyber-Attacks on Medical Imaging Devices,” Malware Lab researchers demonstrate the relative ease of exploiting unpatched medical devices, such as computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines, many of which do not receive ongoing security updates. Consequently, an attacker can easily compromise the computer that controls the CT device, causing the CT to emit high rates of radiation which can harm the patient and cause severe damage. Attackers can also block access to MIDs or disable them altogether as part of a ransom attack, which has already occurred worldwide.This study is part of a larger-scale research project called Cyber-Med, initiated by Dr. Nir Nissim, head of the Malware Lab at BGU's Cyber Security Research Center (CSRC). Cyber-Med aims to develop security mechanisms for medical device ecosystems, including implanted pacemakers, robotic surgeon systems (e.g. da Vinci), medical information systems and protocols, ICU medical devices and MIDs. In recent years, MIDs are becoming more connected to hospital networks, which make them vulnerable to sophisticated cyber attacks that can target a device’s infrastructure and components as well as fatally jeopardize a patient’s health and the hospital system’s operations.BGU Malware Lab experts predict attacks on MIDs will increase. They foresee attackers developing more sophisticated skills directed at these types of devices, the mechanics and software of which are often installed on outdated Microsoft PCs.“CTs and MRI systems are not well designed to thwart attacks,” says Dr. Nissim, who simulates MID cyberattacks together with his MSc student Tom Mahler. “The MID development process, from concept to market, takes three to seven years. Cyber threats can change significantly over that period, which leaves medical imaging devices highly vulnerable.”The study, conducted in collaboration with Clalit Health Services, Israel’s largest health maintenance organization, included a comprehensive risk analysis survey based on the “Confidentiality, Integrity and Availability” risk model, which addresses information security within an organization.Researchers targeted a range of vulnerabilities and potential attacks aimed at MIDs, medical and imaging information systems, and medical protocols and standards. While they discovered vulnerabilities in many of the systems, they found that CT devices face the greatest risk of cyber attack due to their pivotal role in acute care imaging. Simulated cyber attacks revealed four dangerous outcomes:Disruption of scan configuration files By manipulating these files, an attacker can install malware that controls the entire CT operation and puts a patient at great risk. Mechanical MID motor disruption Medical imaging devices have several components with mechanical motors, including the bed, scanner and rotation motors, which receive instructions from a control unit, such as the host computer. If malware infects the host computer, an attack on the motors can damage the device and injure a patient. Image results disruption Because a CT sends scanned results connected to a patient’s medical record via a host computer, an attack on that computer could disrupt the results, requiring a second exam. A more sophisticated attack may alter results or mix up a transmission and connect images to the wrong patient. Ransomware This malware encrypts a victim’s files and demands a ransom to decrypt them. The WannaCry attack, which affected more than 200,000 devices in more than 150 nations in May 2017, directly infected tens of thousands of U.K. and U.S. hospital devices, including MRIs.“In cases where even a small delay can be fatal, or where a dangerous tumor is removed or erroneously added to an image, a cyberattack can be fatal,” says Mahler. “However, strict regulations make it difficult to conduct basic updates on medical PCs, and merely installing anti-virus protection is insufficient for preventing cyber-attacks.”BGU Malware Lab researchers are working on new techniques to secure CT devices based on machine learning methods. The machine-learning algorithm analyzes the profile of the patient being scanned as well as many additional operational parameters of the CT itself, and produces an anomaly detection model based on a clean CT machine. Once the machine is infected, the detection model can identify the change in its behavior and its operational parameters and alert the administrator accordingly.In future research, Dr. Nissim and his team will conduct nearly two dozen attacks to further uncover vulnerabilities and propose solutions to address them. They are interested in collaborating with imaging manufacturers or hospital systems for in situ evaluation.

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