Shedding light on NoSQL for a SQL-ized mind


When choosing the database technology for an application, the most important question is whether to stick with the good old SQL databases, or follow the trend and choose NoSQL. The answer to this question is not as easy as the names (SQL or not) suggest. There are lots of checklists out there trying to help you make the right choice, and they are very helpful for quickly shaping our minds around the topic. However, in my experience, this is more than a checklist topic, rather you need a deep understanding of both technologies. If you are from same era as I am, you have received education or gained experience with SQL databases, probably with none or little knowledge of NoSQL databases. For us, data manipulation and storage have always been tied to relational models, until we heard about the seemingly opposite word of NoSQL. It is just natural to first grasp the new concept in the same light as the old model with supposedly the biggest difference to be ‘not having strict schema’, which sounds just like what we needed. However, there is a lot more to it. We need to dive beyond the shape of stored data or the retrieval options such as ‘to JOIN or not’.

2 sides of forensic watermarking

Forensic watermarking is an essential part of any anti-piracy program. The best approach is an end-2-end solution, combining watermarking technology with proactive detection and enforcement services. Yet we’re seeing a distinct split in how watermarking is implemented. Content owners and pay-media providers sometimes see things differently.

Both sides
Let’s start with the product.

Grow your OTT business despite credentials sharing

Sure, people share their Netflix – or your OTT service – user names and passwords with their buddies and families. Or their credentials get stolen and posted on the internet for illegal use. But is this a “solvable” problem, in the practical sense of the word? Or can you grow your OTT service despite credentials sharing?

Credentials sharing isn’t necessarily Darth Vader in the OTT galaxy
Trying to solve the “credentials sharing problem” is an impressive goal, but possibly a wasteful one and a diversion from the real problem – service abuse.

Manifesto for Cyber Security

The recent ransomware attacks have focused lots of minds on cyber security, however many of the solutions being proposed are little more than sticking plasters to the larger underlying issue – namely systems are not secure by default. The ‘trend’ in software has been to launch it, then fix it. This is a very attractive proposition for businesses, as it lets them discover the ideas that work and don’t work, and then iteratively improve them. Most of the gadgets we use in our lives today would not exist without this mentality. However, the dark side of this approach is that almost all software is not secure. The evidence shows that pretty much every system deployed has security flaws. The only question is who finds the flaws first – bad people or good people.

Premature optimization is the enemy of security

We read continually about new buffer overflows in tools that allow ‘bad guys’ to take over various systems. This week the unfortunate program was Avast AV. The bit that always surprises me is these issues are still occurring in code written relatively recently, we’ve known how to fix all these issues for many years, yet people keep writing code that has these defects. I’d argue that the main cause of this is premature optimization and ignorance.

A successful pirate raid combines investigative skills and teamwork

Pirates know what sells in their market. While content redistribution over the internet is a major global problem, we shouldn’t overlook control word sharing. In Africa, this is still a highly profitable business for pirates. Well, until they’re raided and sentenced that is!

Setting the scene
As part of a long running investigation working with Multichoice Africa Limited (MAL), a cybercrime syndicate was identified in Egypt.