3 Reasons You Should Be Worried About the EU’s Safe Harbor Ruling

safe harbor | | Industry Thoughts, Online Security, SmartFile News

Safe Harbor was an agreement between the US and the EU designed so US organizations could transfer EU citizen Personally Identifiable Information (PII) over the Atlantic while complying with EU rules and regulations regarding data privacy.

Under Safe Harbor, US organizations could “self-certify” that they were compliant with EU data rules and regulations. However, Safe Harbor was recently struck down by the EU’s highest court in large part due to the US government’s own philosophies and behaviors when it comes to company data. In addition, EU officials never fully supported the self-certification program as well.

So this begs the question, should you be worried about the EU courts decision to strike down Safe Harbor? Well, we think there’s several reasons why you should be paying attention, here’s 3 that stand out among the rest. Continue reading

Python Pickle Security Problems and Solutions

python pickle security risks | | API / Platform, Industry Thoughts
Post written by Travis Cunningham, Software Engineer and Taylor Brazelton, Software Engineer

If you are familiar with Python, you may have used the Pickle standard library module for object serialization. This module allows a developer to convert a Python object into data that can be transferred over the network, written to a file, or even stored away in a database. When the object is later needed, the Pickle module can convert the serialized data into a regular Python object.

When building distributed systems, a data serialization format can be used to communicate between machines. The Pickle module may be considered ideal, but there are a few security problems that should be known to anyone using this module. Continue reading

Guest Post: How to Create Employee Guidelines Regarding Workplace Technology

workplace technology | | Industry Thoughts, Online Security


This is a guest post from Jennifer Martinson of SecureThoughts.com.

Most companies create guidelines and policies so that they can maintain a sense of order around the workplace. The guidelines that are put in place determine a great part of the company’s culture, and technological guidelines are some of the most important ones to any company.

If there is a leak of information, it can set a company back months and in some markets, put it out of business. Improper use of technology has serious consequences, but at the same time, you don’t want to unnecessarily restrict your employees.

While each company is its own entity, here are a few things that every leader should think about when creating employee guidelines for office technology:

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Guest Post: 3 Marketing Tips for Developers Building Forms

building forms | | Industry Thoughts, Marketing


This is a guest post from Leeyen Rogers of JotForm. She’s an expert on form development and best practices for enhancing performance.

Typically developers take on the responsibility of a company’s online forms. Payment forms, lead collection forms, registration forms, onboarding processes — developers code the forms then collect and store the data.

Perhaps you’d like to integrate with products like SalesForce or Constant Contact. Or, you’d like to add payment options like PayPal and Stripe.

Anything you do to enhance form conversions could pay dividends for your business, and that’s where some developers can learn some marketing best practices that might come in handy.

Marketers have lots of insight and are familiar with important considerations to keep in mind for better performing forms. Instead of building just a basic form, their insight can help you create forms that collect the information you need while maintaining the right aesthetics and message that your brand needs to thrive. Marketers are concerned with performance, design, analytics, company brand and strategy. Their customer insights and interests will help them develop the right message and interact with the customer to optimize the form to succeed in a variety of success measures.

As a developer, you’re busy though. You might not have the time to work with marketers or to implement their concepts. If this is the case, you can consider an online form builder like JotForm. It alleviates the need to spend hours coding and designing forms. But if you’d like to optimize the forms on your own, keep reading for tips and best practices for developing forms that align with your marketing goals.

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10 Expert Tips to Increase Online Brand Awareness

brand-awareness-part2 | | General Information, Marketing

Your brand is everything the customer pictures when they think of your product. Take a few seconds and quickly picture these brands: Microsoft, Apple, Dell, Google, and Nike. I’m willing to bet that you immediately pictured their logo along with their website, product, or advertisement. Big brands have the luxury of being able to stand by just a logo without any real communication, but younger brands have to do a lot of work to accomplish the same recognition.

How can a company begin to increase their brand awareness online? We asked a variety of branding experts to give their opinions on how to gain more brand recognition.
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