Dimension Data has appointed Jo Healey as New Zealand CEO to lead its local operations, effective 10 November 2014. With more than 20 years’ experience in the ICT industry, most recently as Managing Director of Fujitsu New Zealand, Healey takes the reins from Nick Halikias, Interim Chief Executive. Sunil Desai, Dimension Data Asia Pacific COO, says Healey’s proven track record will set Dimension Data in good stead as the business advances as a full spectrum IT service provider in New Zealand.
[Updated] Whistleblower Edward Snowden has accused New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key of lying to the electorate about the existence of mass surveillance of citizens by the country’s main spy agency. Snowden today revealed in The Intercept that he “routinely came cross the communications of New Zealanders” while working with the US National Security Agency’s once secret XKEYSCORE mass surveillance tool, which it shares with the NZ Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB). The NZ Government is actively concealing the full extent of internal surveillance, he claimed.
Christopher Thomas (pictured), Government Markets Manager, Esri, believes that departments need to move beyond transparency and accountability as drivers for Open Data initiatives – and start focusing on the benefits to citizens. “It takes resources for organisations to open up their data,” notes Thomas. “So the question we are beginning to be asked by governments is – ‘how is the public benefiting from Open Data?’”
New Zealand’s largest telco and internet service provider Spark suffered a three-day long outage over the weekend, as its Domain Name System (DNS) infrastructure became overwhelmed in what the company said was a “dynamic cyber attack”. The outage meant customers were unable to browse the web and utilise other services requiring name service resolution though Spark’s allocated DNS servers.
New Zealand’s main internet provider, Spark, suffered a major nationwide failure this weekend after a handful of users found themselves installing malware on their computers when they clicked on links promising nude photos of celebrities. On Aug. 31, a massive hack led to a leak of tons of nude photos of major celebrities. Jennifer Lawrence, Ariana Grande, and Kim Kardashian were all victims of the breach after their private images were taken out of their iCloud storage systems and posted to online communities within Reddit and 4chan.
The Australia Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) and Maritime New Zealand (MNZ) have paired up to buy a the region’s first next-generation satellite-aided search and rescue (SAR) system that will speed up the location of vessels in distress. France’s Orolia Group owned subsidiary McMurdo Group Techno Sciences has won the €13 million (A$18.3 million), ten year deal [PDF]. The contract is as part of AMSA’s cooperation with its equivalent agency across the Tasman, Maritime New Zealand, and the Kiwis will chip in A$11.3 million for a ground station and operational costs.
The New Zealand Government has launched a new website, Govt.NZ, bringing together information and services from across agencies. “It’s a radical departure from ‘traditional’ service portals because we have been guided by what users tell us they want,” said Peter Dunne, Internal Affairs Minister, launching the website yesterday.
Instagram has launched an app designed after Snapchat. The online mobile photo and video sharing and social networking service released an app called Bolt on Tuesday. It’s Instagram’s first venture into speedy and ephemeral one-to-one video and photo-messaging. The company launched Bolt on Android and iOS in New Zealand, Singapore, and South Africa. Technology website TechCrunch said Instagram is testing the app in these English-speaking and Instagram-fluent countries before rolling it out in the United States.
Chief financial officers “hold the keys” to the next phase of cloud adoption, according to analyst house IDC, because they are among the last ones to move into cloud services. The analysts, who have collected their findings in the latest Asia Pacific cloud survey, say the CFO has an important role to play in terms of moving to a more optimised business model. In other words, it’s to ensure that the CFO sees cloud as a strategic differentiator for companies, as opposed to just being a cost-cutting exercise.
It might only make up 1.1 per cent of New Zealand’s population, but Papakura has raced ahead to become the first district to receive super-fast 4G mobile technology with 700MHz spectrum. Responsible for the Kiwi first was Vodafone, the first telecommunications company to roll out 4G in New Zealand. The telco giant is also the first to successfully trial rural 4G using 700MHz spectrum at Lake Brunner on the West Coast of the South Island last year.
New Zealand’s incumbent Telecom NZ is putting to use the 700MHz “digital dividend” spectrum it paid A$140 million for in a recent government auction by launching a regional 4G service. Telecom NZ said it will launch the service in rural Waikato, covering the town centres of Hamilton and Morrinsville as well as surrounding areas late next month.
TAIPEI–A trade delegation from New Zealand is visiting Taiwan to seek more opportunities for bilateral trade cooperation, according to the New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the country’s international business development agency. The arrival of the 30-member delegation marks the first such mission to Taiwan since the Agreement between New Zealand and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu on Economic Cooperation (ANZTEC) took effect last December, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise said Monday.
New Zealand Governent authorities remain firmly tied to the Windows XP operating system no longer officially supported by Microsoft, new figures show. Opposition party Labour obtained the the figures under the Official Information Act (OIA) from district health boards and ministries, with the documents noting slow progress in migrating to newer versions of Windows, and departments racking up high fees for extended support for XP from Microsoft. There could be well over 40,000 computers running Windows XP in New Zealand Government ministries and district health boards, the documents show.
The New Zealand government today announced it has signed up for capacity on the trans-Pacific Hawaiki data communications cable, and will become an anchor tenant once the link is constructed. Science and innovation minister Steven Joyce and communications and IT minister Amy Adams jointly announced the signing of the contract, which is worth NZ$65 million (A$60.5 million) over 25 years. The NZ government’s stake was acquired through the country’s Research and Educational Advanced Network (REANNZ) and includes the initial NZ$15 million contribution for Hawaiki announced last year.
Google partner Fronde is mounting a charge on legacy on-premise applications with a package combining Google Apps with Chromebooks and Citrix. Dozens of IT buyers flocked to Google’s Sydney HQ on Friday 20 June for the launch announcement made by Fronde CTO James Valentine, Google’s Asia-Pacific enterprise Chrome sales manager Neal French and Adam Richings, enterprise relationship manager at Citrix.
New Zealand government’s approach to cloud computing is too risk averse, a review of the public sector’s use of cloud computing has shown. “Government advice to its agencies on cloud computing is unduly risk-focused”, the New Zealand Productivity Commission’s recent report said. Agencies’ adoption of cloud needs to be approved by the Department of Internal Affairs on a case-by-case basis and complete a risk-assessment proces, leading to high barriers against procuring innovative new projects.
New Zealand has provided an extra $300,000 funding for the next two years of its Open Government Data and Information Programme – with two thirds of the money being spent over the next year. The funding was provided in New Zealand’s recent Budget, and the programme will be led by the agency Land Information New Zealand (LINZ).
At a time when post-PRISM those of us outside of the US are being encouraged to be as nationalistic as possible when selecting our cloud services providers, an interesting reversal down under in New Zealand where the government is being urged to look overseas for its providers.
The New Zealand Government will be presenting its Open Government Partnership (OGP) Action Plan in July, Internal Affairs Minister, Peter Dunne has announced. The action plan will be built around improving public services, increasing public integrity, more effectively management public resources and creating safer communities. OGP is an international partnership of 64 countries committed to making their governments more open accountable and responsive to citizens.
An unknown intruder broke into the New Zealand National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) supercomputer late last week but was not able to inflict significant damage. A statement issued by NIWA chief executive John Morgan acknowledged the computer had been accessed by an unauthorised person last Thursday.