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Acer America
Acer America Corp. is a computer manufacturer of business and consumer PCs, notebooks, ultrabooks, projectors, servers, and storage products.


333 West San Carlos Street
San Jose, California 95110
United States


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January 27, 2023 |

ICYMI: Our Channel News Roundup for the Week of January 23rd, 2023

New laptops from Apple and Lenovo, security goodness from Keeper and Trend Micro, another integration for Gradient MSP, and an unexpected use for ugly sweaters—foiling AI—are a few of the embarrassingly many stories we’re just now bringing your way.

Why is February the shortest month? Because it brings the worst winter weather, so we want to speed through it. Unfortunately, the end of January, starting next week, will feel to the northern United States like everyone in Canada left their freezer doors open, bottoming out thermometers across parts of the plains down the center of the U.S. Hello, frozen February.

Apple MacBook ProApple news. Those who preordered a new Apple MacBook Pro, either the 14-inch or 16-inch models, should be recording their unboxing ceremony by now. With the newest M2 Pro and M2 Max processors and up to 96 GB of RAM, you’ll be surprised when your battery keeps working later than an insomniac (up to 22 hours).

Security news. Passwords multiply constantly, especially for dev and admin folks, so the latest Keeper Connection Manager, version 2.11.0, will give DevOps and IT teams instant access to RDP, SSH, database, and Kubernetes endpoints through a browser without a VPN, including to Microsoft SQL Server and PostgreSQL databases.

Trend Micro Vision One customers get another goodie now that Critical Start’s MDR service integrates to provide 24x7x365 monitoring, investigation, and response services.

The minefield we call email will be easier to protect thanks to integration of KnowBe4’s PhishER product with the Revelstoke SOAR platform.

Make sure the odds are always in your favor by checking out the new Arctic Wolf Incident Response JumpStart Retainer, which offers IR experts through a subscription-based pricing model.

Action1, provider of RMM and more, has made a free tool available for IT teams fighting to clean up systems after the LastPass breach. Free automated scripting capabilities for the first 100 endpoints and more.

Cyber insurance makes nearly half the insurance brokers and agents nervous when they try to explain it to customers, so grab your back-to-school pen and notebook for Cowbell Academy, offering classes like Cyber Insurance 101.

Lenovo for K-12Lenovo K-12 news. The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown accelerated computer and Chromebook penetration into the K-12 world. Continuing that, the new Lenovo education portfolio includes laptops (Windows 11 or ChromeOS) built tough to pass Lenovo’s DuraSpec testing, and all supported by Lenovo TruScale device-as-a-service options.

IoT news. Nozomi Networks presented its new Nozomi Arc as the first OT and IoT endpoint security sensor. It will analyze endpoint vulnerabilities, identify compromised hosts, speed monitoring deployments, and more.

Forbes offers up one of the advantages of 5G: Critical IoT data thanks to Ultra-Reliable Low-Latency Communications (URLLC). Properly configured, reliability hits 99.999% and just the tiniest bit slower than real time.

Also from Forbes: Five Best Practices for Industrial Cybersecurity: Closing the Gap Between IT and OT.

Let’s get this right, because Juniper Research says there will be more than 100 million 5G-IoT connections by 2026. Fattest target: Smart cities.

If you’re a link in the supply chain, or rely on it, this case study in RCR Wireless News on cellular IoT addressed a global problem.

Even smart homeowners are a hard sell for smart appliances, because more than 50% don’t enable IoT services and other smart features. Disconnect? Manufacturers haven’t convinced smart home dwellers that connectivity gives them more benefits than another advertising vector.

If you need more reasons to dive into eSIMs for IoT projects, Diginomica shows CIOs how to deliver both IoT and savings. offers up “AI Inference Software Fundamentals,” on getting started with optical character recognition, sponsored by Intel.

Zoom Virtual AgentOther product news. Providing quality phone support remains a tough target to hit for a variety of reasons, but Zoom says they have an answer: Zoom Virtual Agent, an intelligent conversational AI and chatbot (pictured in action) to help keep customers running and happy.

Now revved to version 9.0, Arcserve Unified Data Protection offers centrally managed backup and DR from a single platform. And Sophos cybersecurity tools, too.

Gradient MSP teamed up with Mesh to make billing reconciliation less painful and you more profitable.

The new Epson WorkForce Pro WF-C5390 A4 Color Printer and WF-C5890 A4 MFP both have replaceable ink pack systems for more pages and less ink replacements.

Designed for “wireless-first” and IoT campus networks, including fiber-to-the-room connectivity, the new RUCKUS Networks ICX 8200 switch series offers 13 different stackable models, high powered 90W per port PoE, and enhanced security.

Impartner’s Partner Relationship Management platform now includes “News On Demand” to share information and increase partner engagement.

Simon YeoNon-product vendor news. The red carpet at the door of WatchGuard is for new Senior Vice President of Operations Simon Yeo (pictured).

The Carpet of Crimson leading to the entrance of Cybeready bears the footprints of Jonathan Stone who joins as vice president of sales for North America.

Domino Data Lab will expand its partner channel as it allies with TD SYNNEX to reach resellers in more than 100 countries.

A multiyear transformation of the ServiceNow Partner Program, announced at its Partner Kickoff event in Las Vegas, offers new incentives, four new, distinct modules from Build through Service Provider, and updates to the partner portal.

The partner portal at Teramind revved up to support the revamped global partner program with tiered performance levels, updated commissions, and more.

CompTIA’s extensive training and certifications offerings will get, ah, extensiver with the acquisition of TestOut and its LabSim learning platform, courseware, and performance-based exams.

This week’s stats ticker:

The fourth annual Data Protection Trends Report from Veeam predicts data backup budgets will continue to rise for a variety of reasons, including complex hybrid IT environments, fending off cyberattacks, and  container-centric workloads. Improving data protection in 2023 will require reliability and consistency when supporting IaaS and SaaS applications alongside data center servers. Using legacy backup solutions to protect cloud-hosted data remains a struggle. Since cloud-based services are “nearly inevitable” for organizations of all sizes, IT must consider cloud tiers for retention and investigate Backup-as-a-Service and Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service.

The first BlackBerry Cybersecurity Global Threat Intelligence Report looks at 90 days of statistics that include a number of unique malware samples stopped by their systems at a rate of 62 new malicious samples per hour, meaning approximately one new sample per minute. 65% of those were against organizations in the United States, followed by Japan at 8% and Brazil at 6%. Between September 1 and November 30, 2022, BlackBerry stopped 1,757,248 malware-based cyberattacks with their Cylance Endpoint Security tools. A few other conclusions? No platform is “safe” since macOS malware and vulnerabilities abound and Linux attacks are increasing.

Datto, a Kaseya company, released its 2022 State of Ransomware report, which surveyed nearly 3,000 IT professionals in small to medium-sized businesses across eight countries. First takeaway? SMBs are aware of increasing cyberthreats and are allocating resources to protect themselves. About a fifth of IT budgets are dedicated to security, and many report plans for an increase. Nearly half (47%) of respondents plan to invest in network security in the next year. Organizations with cyber insurance are more active in their security preparations, but they’re also more likely to have been attacked and suffered an incident in the past.

The latest Cybersecurity Analysis from Canalys forecasts a 13.2% increase in global cybersecurity spending in 2023, a key growth sector for channel partners. Ransomware remains the biggest threat, but groups turning new AI models such as ChatGPT into bad actors will increase the risk to an entirely new level, Canalys predicts. FYI: more than 90% of the total security product and services spending, estimated to be $144.3 billion in 2023, will go through channel partners.

AI-proofAI Versus AI. Everyone knows, even if they choose to put it out of their minds, that cameras with facial recognition software on the backend lurk everywhere. Pandemic mask habits aided privacy, but not enough. Your best chance in evading facial recognition may come from Italy.

Italy? That hotbed of security technology? No, Italian startup Capable and its Manifesto collection of, guess what, ugly sweaters.

Not just any ugly sweater will work, however. Capable was designed by AI to confuse facial recognition AI. Wear the right ugly sweater, and most facial recognition software tracking your movements will interpret your face as a giraffe or a zebra. “Animal style” for the win.

Photo: Marcello Chiesa

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