Monday, 23 November 2015

Cyber Security A Risk We Should All Take Seriously

In the face of continued Terrorism which seems to recognize no boundaries, notably the horrific attacks seen in Paris, Lebanon etc..  Add to this the behavior of the Russian fleet in a way that appears to be targeting the installations of the world's network, reference the activity of late around the submarine cables.  Then for-sure we have the new and aggressive paradigm shift which possible could lead to a new and necessary economic boom surrounding our IT infrastructure. 

It is perhaps an obvious open secret that world partners are conscious and concerned about cyber security, network resilience and the utilization in this digital age for terrorists to quickly communicate in a hidden and dangerous way.  It is no longer just about the company's secrets it is also about our well-being, way of life that we must protect.  Therefore, experience in this area will no doubt be in high demand.
Cyber security
Over the last five years there have been a significant increase in cyber attacks with each attack growing in sophistication.  Therefore, it is obvious that the trend will continue and very soon with appropriate funding organizations or even nation states will be able to access any system as long as it is connected to the Internet.

No country can now say with confidence that their infra-structure, the core of their economic prosperity, security etc. can be secure in times of troubled periods. 
 
Cyber Threats - Private Sector and Infra-structure
Threats and actions not only result in economic losses they can at times influences in a detrimental way company policy, a notable example of this was Sony in the cancellation of their film regarding the spoof of North Korea.

Cyber threats have evolved such that they can create chaos throughout infra-structure.  A casing point is that of Ports and shipping.  The comings and goings are all automated creating chaos possibly loss of life, cargo's, rerouting of ship etc. Industrial control systems, which operate the physical processes of pipelines, railways, and other critical infrastructures are at an elevated risk of cyber exploitation.

Expand this to Aviation then fore sure we have a catastrophic scenario which can only result in loss of life both in the air and on the ground. 

To-date we have seen:

  • Phishing attacks:  There are numerous examples of this where victims, regardless of whether they are in the aviation industry, have had their personal data compromised, again a classic example of this was Sony and the mayhem that that caused by the North Korean hack.  In 2014 CIS (Center for Internet Security) reported that 75 US airports were persistently attacked.
  • Jamming attacks: Alarmingly a determined hacker can intercept the air traffic control data and add in a "Ghost Flight" causing mayhem in the skies.  They are even able to delete real events thus compromising data needed for aircraft management, such as: Speed, Location, routing and positioning of other aircraft.
  • Remote hijacking: Through the FMS (Flight Management Systems) you can potentially access; engine, fuel systems, navigation, displays etc.

To note whilst this is all quite alarming, it is of course known about and many systems are in place to prevent these scenarios from playing out.  Such systems are defined by "CAST" (Commercial Aviation Safety Team).   However, complacency is not an option as we must evolve as the threats are prevalent and all around us.  

Therefore:
  1. Data must be shared between Governments and Private sectors alike.
  2. All Industries must implement a cyber training policy.  Highlighting the risks of personal data being loaded onto social networks.  The risks to opening malicious malware through a personal email account.  Individuals should add layers of security to their personal accounts.  Such as; changes should require an SMS alert adding another dimension and preventing such attempts from completing.

To conclude there are many scenarios and many solutions all of which need attention as currently our enemies are well versed in using the very technology we have developed to improve all of our lives in ways that can harm us. No doubt having woken to this fact we can in short order trap and abolish this misuse.

More on the pages of Statura



Nigel Saywell-Lee
www.statura.co.uk

Friday, 13 November 2015

To confirm Indonesia as an Investment opportunity it is a no brainer

Facts:

  • Indonesia is a near Trillion $ economy.
  • Indonesia is South East Asia's largest economy.
  • Pesident Widodo has gone on record at the CEO conference stating all of Indonesia's infra-structure needs.  Thus throwing Indonesia open to all.
  • Indonesia has over the last 20 years relied on resources to sustain their economy.
As resources have declined in demand and therefore their value. Indonesia has to now re-orientate itself towards Infra-structure and manufacturing.
 
Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegorohas stated that they are looking for a manufacturing base and have removed many bureaucratic requirements in order to develop such a base.  However, be aware; Indonesia have recently levied many import taxes onto finished products as well as high duties on wines, spirits imported cars etc.  In some ways this has been seen as to have protectionist tendencies. However, this has been defined as a further incentive to import raw or part built materials into Indonesia for final assembly. Perhaps such a move is a further indication as to their serious intent to maximize their available labour force. 

Incentives:
  • Tax holidays enjoyed by a few sectors have been raised from 10 years to 20 years and now open to many more areas of manufacturing.
  • Special economic zones will be established (detail to be defined) in order to enjoy many other benefits.
 Proposed:
  •  2016 Corporation tax will be reduced to 18% - 20%.  Currently levied at 25%.
  • Deregulation in the financial sectors
You have to bear in mind Indonesia is a country with some 250M inhabitants.  Most of which survive on less than a $ a day, perhaps much less. There are considered to be 40M middle class.  This is expected to grow to 110M in 10 years.

Indonesia lags far behind their neighbours in their development.  Which is again another indication as to why Indonesia is a location to grasp, it offers by far one of the best dynamics for sustainable growth.

When we talk about infra-structure you should bear in mind that Indonesia is a vast archipelago. An archipelago if it was lift off the map and placed on Europe it would stretch from London to Tehran.  This alone gives rise to a vast need for roads, ports, railway etc. 

This is just a small taste as to the opportunities that are real and they are here and now.  Of course Statura would very much like to provide services to any organization wishing to dip a toe into Indonesia.

Saturday, 31 October 2015

Who's afraid of the big bad wolf - Public Speaking, Challenges, Benefits and Opportunities

 Public Speaking, Challenges, Benefits and Opportunities

It is absolutely essential to master the art of public speaking.  Sadly this is a recipe to promote the fear of god into the most seasoned professional.  You may or may not be aware that there is a real sickness or syndrome out there called Glossophobia - the fear of public speaking.

Hell as a mere youngster, around age 26 I had the task of presenting to an auditorium of 200 IBM techies.  I can safely say it put the fear of god into me, before (several weeks before) during and even afterwards.  I had the challenge of interpreting every movement of my audience and trying to put a positive spin on their body language.  This in itself was a recipe for disaster.  I can tell you there was a guy, an older gentlemen sitting in the front row stretched out with his legs straight crossed at the ankles with his arms folded across his chest, bored or what.  That very guy caused me to completely throw my presentation and instilled huge fear which lasted for some time and made my presentation seem endless.  

You have to overcome this if you are to succeed in your business life.  Your reputation is vastly enhanced as and when you present yourself to an audience of your peers. Your understanding is appreciated, accepted and your ability to close deals will be vastly improved. Understand this, if you know your subject then there is no one that will not be interested in what you have to say. 

Someone once said to me:  We all come into this world in the same bloody mess as each other, basically we are all equal.  Sure we are all able to be judged and we are all able to judge, but what does it really matter.

Just get up there and have fun and the more you do it the more fun you will have.

1) Think of a neutral opening line that injects a little humanity into the speech.  Use humour, not offensive humour of course just something light and innocuous. 

2) Wherever possible include the audience. I don't mean drag the guy in the front row onto the podium but I do mean involve them, make the event interactive.  But remember you have a time pressure and cover your content sensibly.

3) Whether you're presenting to 3, 30 or 3,000 it really makes no difference.  But if you need to; start small and build up your confidence, then do so.

4) Prepare, not with bullet points but write the whole presentation out verbatim.  Remember when the queen of England speaks it is all scripted and she reads as per the content laid out in front of her.  Don't be afraid to shuffle papers.

5) Practice: I mean read it through again and again and again.  Relax into it, that way if you drop your papers or the battery dies on your ipad you are not lost.

6) Use pauses to emphasize points.  Pauses only seem long to you but they give your audience time to adjust and provided they don't cause you to buckle at the knees they will be your friend helping you formulate your next point.

7) Composure; Even though you will read from your script always scan your audience catching eye contact briefly and regularly with as many of the audience as you can.

8) Tone; Do not deliver in a monotone, look for ways to emphasize points; use rhetorical questions to engage with them.
9) Perhaps for me is an important point: deliver examples in 3's. Look at the major speakers as an example; Margaret Thatcher always made points in 3's  In 1980 she made a speech to the Conservative conference.

"She confessed that there might be an obstacle in the way in the form of another winter of discontent. But she claimed that she preferred to believe that a lesson had been learned from the past, and that the country was coming slowly towards a new Autumn of Understanding, which she hoped would be followed by a Winter of Commonsense".


"She had a few words which might have been directed towards the wets in her own Cabinet. She talked of "those who urge us to relax the squeeze, to spend yet more money indiscriminately in the belief that it will help the unemployed." Such people, she said, were not being kind, or compassionate, or caring".

John F Kennedy also used the 3 to emphasize a point:  November 1960 "It is cold, rainy, and there are many other things you would want to do. But I am grateful to you for being able to stand and say “Hello.” I think you are here for the same reason that I am, because this is an important election, because we are Democrats, because we believe in progress, and because we are going to win".

There are many such examples  in many great speeches.

As time moves on you too will make great speeches and they will be speeches that bring fulfillment, improved self esteem but above all a great sense of achievement.

The worst point of any presentation is always the minute before you step out into the lime light.  Use that minute to focus on where this will go. Great athletes always before their event focus on the visualization as to the results of a positive outcome.  Use breathing as a way to calm yourself focus solely on your in and out breath.  Clear your head in ways that can relax, stimulate and thus take you to another level far above the negativity that fear brings.


Good luck and remember look to the pages of Statura.co.uk for further inspiration, for further guidance and enlightenment.

Thursday, 1 October 2015

How To Make More! Huge Opportunity! 250M People To Join The Middle Classes

Wednesday, 30 September 2015


How To Make More! Huge Opportunity! 250M People To Join The Middle Classes

Mostly, I write balanced bullish articles about Indonesia, its beauty and its opportunity.  This article is no different.  I am also convinced that with 250M people it offers itself and the world a truly foreseeable, sustainable economic growth.  After all, Indonesia has a successful entrepreneur at its helm, a wealthy man in his own right.  He is portrayed as a man of the people and appears to have no truck with the old ways of corruption and graft.

However, all is not moving at the required speed so what's wrong? Particularly given Indonesia's past, their new desire to move forward and implement procedures;  they are at least giving us the sight of a level playing field. But, all is not as it seems
  • Indonesia wants retirees, they want them to buy land and villas and live here in peace and quiet. That continues to not be possible as the rules around land and property ownership are vague, i.e. Can you own? Can you lease? Is the lease's legal today and will they still be legal tomorrow?.
  • Indonesia wants outside investment, so why not?  I would caution that regulation and consistency are still an issue; as and when this is resolved its clear that Investment will come.  After all where better than a green field site with a country determined to build an Infrastructure, along with a vast labour force willing and able to work.
However, new roads, sea and rail links, bringing access to high population hubs are only part of the story. It is factories and manufacturing that will alleviate the unemployment. Unemployment which has occurred from the worldwide resources downturn. The factories that will come are from China, Europe and the Americas.  Therefore, regulation needs clarity and consistency.

As an example and perhaps a role model.  Nearby countries have for a long time encouraged growth, encouraged foreign firms and incentivised investment. Malaysia provides superb infrastructure, ports, glitzy buildings and a relaxed regulatory environment.  In fact their policies are not only pro foreign investment they are remarkably consistent.  Consistencies are a staple for us in the West, in Indonesia they appear a luxury; this has to be addressed.

The success of Malaysia whilst it is good, it would pale into insignificance against a burgeoning Indonesia as and when this opportunity lifts off.

Business forums complain of red tape, that regulation is introduced in a whimsical fashion.  Regulations are then changed in an adverse way.  It is generally felt that the Indonesian government infer "a take it or leave it" attitude towards foreign investment. The result of which foreign investors are firmly sitting on their hands when it comes to Indonesia.

Indonesia has grounds to be proud, they have indeed made tremendous progress, you can easily see this as you look to the Jakarta skyline. They do have a sizeable domestic market and all things being equal, it is they that should benefit from it. But, other countries have also had sizable markets, but, they have for a long time realized, enjoyed and benefited from outside assistance.

In 1997 Indonesia along with Asia experienced a currency and economic crisis.  It was only by chance, due to Indonesia's archipelago being rich in resources, that in 2004 a resources led recovery took hold. That recovery has now ended as the world economy and in particular China has slowed.

Therefore, the government is right in their ambitions to move the economy away from resource dependency and more towards manufacturing and consumerism.  But, Indonesia is losing the perception game and it must now support a more friendly approach to the global investment world, if it is to realize its dreams.

I now dream of the day that the people can realize their ability and perhaps their right to move towards the middle classes.  Participating as paid up, tax paying members of the Indonesian economy as well as the global community. Since there is not a more deserving and long suffering race of people.

I have real faith that the Indonesians have chosen a good leader. As I believe he has the right initiatives in place; what we are seeing are just teething problems from an introverted government, transforming into that of an extrovert launching itself onto the International stage.

So as I have said in the past it is the early bird etc..

More inspiration from the pages of statura.co.uk

Monday, 28 September 2015

Is perception a reality or should we question more?


Should we, in the age of information, ever question leadership? Are we right that once elected, we should then abdicate responsibility for our well being, leaving only history to judge those that harm us? Are events ever as they seem? Not sure that I will make much progress with this blog as it may even be too subjective and perhaps a little controversial even for me.

However, here goes:

Human psychology somehow opens us up to a great deal of suggestibility i.e. we believe what we see, we take direction from our leaders trusting their judgement. But are we right to do this, to take blind faith

For example; If we go back in time, a Silk air flight crashed in Sumatra December 1997, on discovering the black box voice recorder, the recorder had been allegedly deliberately disconnected. To the US investigators the controls were set  for a high speed nose dive and therefore, it was their perception that the pilot committed suicide, killing 104 passengers and crew.  What appeared to compound this theory was the pilot's personal circumstances which spoke of gambling debts and several on record disciplinary actions. However, such extreme action points to another bizarre activity that of the co-pilot.  It would appear that the co-pilot sat by without question as the pilot followed this maneuver, failing to question his leader as this would be disloyal.  However, Indonesian investigators opposed the US version saying the plane was at fault opening the door to lawsuits on Boeing.

Another example: Was Lehman's closed down as a result of poor governance or was it closed as a result of a Hank Paulson alleged vendetta emanating from the time of his employ at Goldman Sachs, better known as "Government Goldman".  By causing the collapse of Lehman's they effectively caused the bailout of such firms as AIG to be 7 times more expensive, Merrill 2x, GM 3x, Chrysler 2x.  Oddly AIG's liabilities rose 5x.

The economic recovery was indeed made worse by allowing such debt to burden the world's economy. Which, brings me back to my first question was it let go due to poor governance or was it something more sinister.

We all know the story of WMD's and the justification of the Iraq invasion. It almost speaks of desperation, desperation to go to war with Iraq.  We know all was not what it seems! But did we know that by removing the Iraq regime that we would create a foe more evil, more vast than Saddam and his despots could even imagine.

Back in the day there were of course many "protagonists" such as George Galloway, who tirelessly, controversially campaigned against the war.  Of course, George is no shirk when it comes to controversy.  Perhaps, given the rapid expansion of IS maybe we should have heeded his, what was at that time ludicrous advice.  Bear in mind, for some reason history will show that the more left of the tiller you are the better an orator you are. 

However, were we strategically aware of such carnage to come, where they/we perhaps banking on this carnage as some bizarre way to create havoc in the middle East, after all the West have been held to ransom for many a year by the hypocrisy emanating from the authoritarian leaders from that region.

So should we ask not only what's real, but, should we just accept it or should we question the path we're being asked to take.  For many years I have believed that everything happens for a reason, therefore the events that follow must be deemed part of the greater scheme of things.  But, I also believe we make our own luck as the only ingredient that you need is work. So we can not accept action as being correct unless we at first question its impact as for sure it will always have an impact.

That aside, there is a real and growing human tragedy emerging as a result of our current inactivity.  These are real people with real families who had real jobs and they have contributed to the "Globalization of their's and the world's economies". These are people that we have in some instances shared meetings with, conferences, discussed sales figures, growth forecasts, they are every bit like us.

I agree with David Cameron that these people need to be able, safe and in their own homes not in refugee camps scattered across Europe.  However, David Cameron's reasons portrayed as humanitarian may only be and I suspect a perception, but what the hell it's right.. 

To go further; interesting that Russia will not house or re-home any refugees so perception is not only have they prevented a solution they have enacted revenge on Europe for the Ukraine stance.

We must question everything, if we are to learn anything from history, then complacency is no longer acceptable.   More from the pages of Statura.co.uk

Thursday, 24 September 2015

The Future is Now

In line with my company mandate, mission statement, whatever glorious techno phrase we like to use to dress up as a soundbite to captivate potential clients.  So here goes my "Elevator Pitch" being English we know it as a "lift".  However I digress as we hypothetically pass 2 floors so not a good start, I'm assuming we're in Petronas towers so plenty of space.

The world needs a Paradigm shift pretty much as when we arrived at the aircraft age or CAD/CAM even mobile telephony.

Here are my thoughts:
  1. Robotics
  2. UDT (Undersea Defense Technology)
  3. Bio Technology
Perhaps we are not as in need of of ideas as we thought.  These Industries appear to be at a point of substantial growth.  Growth that may lead to Jobs, Innovation, creativity that satisfies the adventurer in us all.

Let's deal briefly with the 1st point as we have all seen the examples of Robotics installing, spray painting cars and such like.  We've seen the marketing that show robotic arms looking perplexed and lost as they make sense of the advertisement caption of which they are portrayed.

But imagine:
  • As we move into our dotage and our lives once active are no longer able to perform the many tasks required just to bring basic hygiene.
  • Hotels where the check in staff are well groomed individuals with looks that we all aspire to.
  • Care homes where staff are on hand with the strength of Sampson assisting baths, moving beds plus other such heavy lifting activities.
  • Exo-skeletons. transforming each of us into superhuman beings available to perform far above our capabilities in areas such as:
    • Warfare
    • Firefighting
    • Construction
    • Removals
    • Care Homes
      • The list is endless.
Let me throw another area into the mix, UDT (Undersea Defense Technology).  Over recent years there has been a little publicized but major shift in our capabilities: 
  • Deployments of Submarines, 
  • Spatial capabilities, 
  • Airborne Lasar scanning systems, 
  • Unmanned undersea systems, 
  • Marine Renewable Energy mix for hybrid power generation
  • Under water tourism (after all few of us have ventured further than a snorkel)
  • Sea floor mapping and sonar systems
    •  To name but a few
Underwater warfare is moving East bringing with it a need for defense systems, tracking devices and Mine technology.

Third area which is gathering momentum is of course Bio Technology which is a subject in its own right and for another day and time.

What I have captured here is just the essence of the few opportunities that are abound and ready to be seized upon for the intrepid Entrepreneur, (Pengusaha to use an Indonesian term as much of this will evolve for I'm sure off the coast of Indonesia)..

Statura will continue to drone on about better Leadership, greater understanding of the myriad of procedures surrounding proper governance of companies, people skills and projects.

More from the pages of Statura.co.uk   

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Indonesia the road to prosperity and rail and sea and air

The Investment Opportunities of the 21st Century


Indonesia a South East Asian nation of many picturesque Islands consisting of thousands of active volcanoes.  Home to many cultures, many languages as well as varying religious doctrines which are dominantly devout.

Borobudur
Indonesia is famous for beaches, sun, surf and vast jungles. Jungles of which are rich in themselves; sheltering Elephants, Tigers, Komodo Dragons etc..  Indonesia is steeped in traditions; mythology, legends, gods which grace us with their mysterious presence by wandering this vast archipelago. magic, Susuk (the most powerful charm needles in Indonesia), potions, healing powers, spiritual enlightenment, yoga, spas and sensual massage are freely practiced often in sumptuous surroundings.  

Java Indonesia' main island plays host to Indonesia's capital Jakarta, by all accounts a sprawling modern metropolis of rich with opportunity, activity as well as providing a breath taking journey of adventure.  Indonesia a nation that until 70 years ago was colonized by the early Dutch settlers.  Monuments, museums, statues and icons depicting their struggle for independence. 

Yet I romanticize this vast archipelago, which if placed on Europe would stretch from London to Tehran.  
  • 250M people and growing, a burgeoning middle class which is vastly increasing, 
  • 2006 6M households were deemed middle class, 
  • 2015, 13M households
  • By 2020 this is expected to reach 30M families.
Jakarta Skyline
Indonesia is today the growth story of the world, vast potential as this archipelago modernizes, bringing wealth, expansion, hope, prosperity through employment to the far flung reaches of this vast volcanic set of fiefdoms.

Tenders are out, projects are defined:
  • Road expansions, new tolls, highways and municipal byways are defined, set out in ink by the planners of this nation.  
  • Water is in focus, dams are defined, reservoirs mapped and waste will be efficiently managed.  
  • Power plants are abound, designed to be environmentally friendly driven by HSD (High Speed Diesel), Marine fuels as well as LPgas.  Bali has recently introduced a new power plant design as specified above.  This Power station produces 200Megawatts of clean energy full filling the needs of a Paradise (Paradise being the Bali brand) on earth. 
  • New Power Station Bali
  • Sea Ports, deeper, bigger, more mechanized, further linking this vast archipelago, bringing economies of scale (Today a bag of cement in Java costs $4 in Papua $12 approx).
Investors are encouraged to participate! This is not a public exercise more the expectation that the private sector will participate.  A sector that will assimilate with the once in a life time opportunities that are available in one location.  Participation is mandatory as we recognize the world is already saturated with such modern services.

Telecoms are strong, mobile networks utilize state of the art technology, 4G roll out has been defined. Braodband and Satellite Internet providers are in abundance which care for the Internet speed requirements.

Factories will flourish the middle classes will upgrade. Luxury brands will be adorned.  Brands long being the staple of success for an Asian to show their wealth.
Sea Ports in Jakarta

This country is undergoing a renaissance, it is blessed with an honest government which has emerged from a history of Cronyism, graft and self serving.   The government of Joko Widodo has embarked on ambitious project to weed out the archaic self serving elements.  The Governor of Jakarta  a man of equal stature to that of the President, a man who shares the same values and aspirations of Indonesia has indeed made significant inroads and successes curtail the historic poor governance.  Rivers are clean, Shanti towns are cleared municipal homes with modern facilities are provided for previous destitute residents.

Regulations have been relaxed, land acquisition laws have been drafted, submitted and passed through the government unhindered. 

The risks are of course there but where would we be without risks.  It is the entrepreneur that thrives in such an environment, grasping perhaps in this case the low hanging fruit as this nation emerges from what we would call the dark ages.

Early Adopters:

New Airport Toll Road Bali
China Railway Construction Corporation signed an agreement to invest in the 30-kilometer Sunda Strait Bridge project linking the Indonesian islands of Sumatra and Java. And last year, Japan’s J-Power consortium won the bidding to build a new power plant in Central Java, which would provide electricity for 8 million people by 2016. 

An eminent quote: 

"The progress in infrastructure development in the last two years has been much better than expected,” says Shobana Venkataraman, IFC Principal Investment Officer. “Indonesia’s economy has improved and its sovereign rating has been upgraded to investment grade, making infrastructure investments more attractive to investors and lenders."

More from the pages of Statura.co.uk