The Internet of Things (IoT)

The latest concept in the tech world is the Internet of Things or IoT for short! What is it I hear you cry!!

Well loosely speaking it is the concept where things, such as people, animals and objects are given their own IP address (IPv6) and information about them or too them can be sent electronically to another place and the data stored and actioned. For example, the telemetry from your car can be transmitted to a central server(s) and any problems can be identified and sent back to the car and the driver or the vehicle itself can take action to fix it. Another example might be a parcel that can keep a central system updated about its progress and location, all the way to the point of delivery and then store itself! The possibles are endless!

IoT could make the new IATA NDC Hub look old fashioned

Read the following link for more info: http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/Internet-of-Things

cyber-heists involving millions of credit cards

I know this may seem a bit boring to some but Cyber security is causing increasing problems worldwide. The UK travel industry is no less susceptible than any other, in fact it is probably a real target. It offers the hacker high value databases that are relatively poorly protected.

See the BBC website for details:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/news/technology-29937536

 

 

Scammers target online travel agent

Thousands of customers of the leading online travel agent Booking.com are being targeted in a sophisticated fraud.

see more:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-29942503

It is time the travel trade concentrated more on Data Security see

http://www.tamite.co.uk/cyber-spear

 

 

Drupal websites attacked

If your webmaster uses Druple software to manage your web contend and images you need to check with them to ensure your site has not been ‘hacked’. Automated attacks have given attackers control of many websites and thus access to business and customer data.

Please see follow this link for more details:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-29846539

Malware attacks nearly double UK travel industry beware

Malware attacks nearly doubled in the first half of 2014. With the UK (17%) suffering the largest growth in Europe, ahead of Germany (12%). Companies that hold large databases including clients financial and personal details already need to comply with existing Data Protection Laws but in 2015 UK and European regulations are to be significantly strengthened.  Fines for the loss of data which are already significant will increase to levels where no business can afford to be complacent, any longer.

Data security is a particularly vital in the travel sector as it has by it holds very large databases of client financial and personal information. New enhanced EU and UK data protection laws coming in 2015 make it even more important that the ‘Travel sector’ combats data threats and cyber-attacks. As an example; – a well know Bank had a data breach in June and only discovered it in July. Can your company afford those sorts of challenges?

Even if your Travel business already has a data security section within in its I.T. department or at least employs a security officer you are likely to need access to a ‘Security Operations Centre’ that offers the most advanced Cyber Security. The latest services will identify Cyber-attacks in the form of Advanced Persistent Treats (APT) block them and repeat attacks while defending against attacks from new directions!

The best is never cheap but it can be very cost effective. We work with Tamite Ltd to provide the travel industry with one of the very best precise treat detection services available in the world.

To find out more call us to day or see. www.tamite.com/cyber-spear/

Data secuity in the travel industry

Data Security in the travel industry still only seems to be a priority when a major problem arises! I read with interest an article in Tnooz  today about a Data breach at Viator that has directly affected over 1.4 million customers. Nearly 880,000 people had financial information stolen in the breach while 550,00 others may have potential problems with their information being possibly breached by hackers.

Regardless if it is financial or personal data the global travel industry can not longer afford to be complacent about systems security.

The use of third party Security Operations Centre’s is a really cost effective method of protecting your business. No information is sent to outside organisations but they do monitor data trends that indicate problems building and then work with your IT department to stop them developing in anything from fraud to  full blown cyber attacks. For less than the cost of a member of staff, you can potentially save your business several times a year!!

Together with a business partner we have become resellers for a top end security service that provides (excuse the old adage) military grade data monitoring and protection. It is expensive, but still less than the cost of a reservations agents salary p.a., but boy is the peace of mind worth it! Not to mention the savings of possible losses of money as well as to your business reputation. Call for a confidential discussion.

What is BIG Data to the Travel Industry?

The current technology  ‘buzz words’ are ‘BIG’ and ‘DATA’. So what is Big Data? Why does it have so many people running around?

To most ordinary travel folk the term Big Data means nothing and frankly gets ignored until someone from the I.T. department comes running into the board room getting excited! So, they say, what is all the excitement all about?

Well, in order to keep it simple, we shall keep our view of it down to the basics.  Ask the question ‘what is Big Data’ of ten people and you could well get ten different answers all of which could be correct in someway. In other words it is different things to different people. Basically we at “Travel Systems Associates” believe it to be the accumulation of a travel company’s information (data) that it gets from and about customers. The easiest example is; if your travel business has a website, social media, CMS, booking system etc. etc then all the data you get from those sources amounts to Big Data. The question then is; what do we do with it? In the past the question has not arisen as we have been too busy focusing on individual data sources not the whole picture.

Technology solutions are now emerging (like AWS analytics) that allow the tech savvy amongst us (but as time goes on simplified solutions will emerge) to program questions that identify buying patterns to emerge. This in turn will allow products to be more flexible to match the markets changing demands. For example; if your Facebook page is getting a lot questions about products or services that your company does not offer the Big Data analysis will show results clearly so your business can react quickly and make bigger profits. Equally, it might tell you that business is being lost by not responding to customer concerns quickly enough. Either way, the impact of having more information available about your relationship with customers and the market in general will be significant.

If you would like to know more about how Big Data can benefit your business, call us today to find out more!

 

 

 

Sonata acquires Rezopia

Sonata Travel has acquired U.S. based “Rezopia” the Cloud based booking solution provider. As part of the deal the have purchased 100% of “XYKA” the Indian based I.T. services company that the Directors of Rezopia owned. Buying the marketing and support of a company is always a good plan!

This may be the start of a pattern as larger service and solution companies expand into the Travel Industry – which lets face it – is not awash with major players as it has proven to be too complex in the past. Cloud services and solutions are a game changer!

Companies like Sonata may not presently be  well known names in the travel sector but they will be soon. It may not help them much in the European market, to start with, but it would seem to be a good bet that we can expect a bigger presence there in the near term.

 

Internet Explorer problems

Microsoft have said that there is a a potential problem with IE 6 – 11 security. Hackers have found a potential loophole that particularly effects those 30% of computers who still have the XP operating systems. This is because it is not longer supported so that a fix for other operating systems will be issued for XP.

Have a look at the full story on the BBC technology website:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/news/technology-27184188

Watch out for spam emails allegedly to be from BA

British Airways has published warnings about spam email confirming non existent bookings.

Please be aware and add to you spam listings.

example is shown here.