Cybersecurity faces challenges and threats each year, and 2023 is no exception. While aggressive ransomware methods and the exploitation of data breaches are growing, the rapid advancements in AI are already being exploited, from ChatGPT to the expanding usage of Deep Fake technologies. Many organisations continue migrating to the cloud, and remote/distributed working is now the norm. However, employees must still be included in protecting the office network perimeter. Criminals are still trying to take advantage of the vast access that corporate devices and VPNs still offer. Given the growing skills gap and the likelihood of a global recession, underfunded IT teams will likely continue to struggle to deliver digital transformation while securing more complex environments. 

To better comprehend some of the growing dangers we might see over the following year, we’ve compiled the cybersecurity forecasts for 2023 from our vendors and other sources in the industry in this post.

Trend Micro

People have taken upon new forms of contactless technology, and goverments and businesses have been shifting more into the cloud over the past few years. Businesses’ digital footprints and attack surfaces grow, creating security gaps that cybercriminals eagerly search to exploit. These criminals are developing logical, professional business strategies to increase their revenues.


What effects will 2023 have on security? Senior Forcepoint subject matter experts make five predictions in this Future Insights eBook on the trends they think will influence security efforts in 2023 and beyond. Did you know four out of five forecasts came true from Forcepoint’s 2022 Future Insights series?


Similar to previous years, 2022 was a challenging year for cybersecurity. The Costa Rican government was threatened with overthrow by the ransomware group Conti. This different cybercriminal gang improved the social engineering attack vector and exposed confidential information all year. Microsoft, Nvidia, Uber, Globant, and several other major tech businesses were targets of Lapsus$.

Contrast Security

Cybersecurity mayhem is anticipated: Tom Kellermann, SVP of Cyber Strategy at Contrast Security, predicts that serverless malware like Denonia will increase and that Twitter will be used as a launchpad for cyberattacks in 2023.


Inquiring about their predictions for the state of cybersecurity in 2023, Radware contacted a number of their clients.


Organisations must adopt a forward-thinking strategy for cybersecurity in a time of economic uncertainty and geopolitical upheaval to stay one step ahead and prevent expensive breaches. Email and endpoint security are necessary because email is the main threat channel. 

Check Point

The top security priorities for organisations in the upcoming year will include hacktivism, deep fakes, attacks on business communication platforms, new legal requirements, and pressure to reduce complexity.


No matter what sector you work in, the end of the year brings us all a few universal gifts: a deluge of retail offers for incredible discounts on everything we need (or want), a flurry of conversations about what we learned from the past year and what we plan to do more/less/better next year; and predictions for the opportunities and challenges the new year will present.


Geopolitical upheaval and a growing online assault surface in 2022 helped rise to several topics in the cyber landscape. Governmental entities, supply chains, and IOT devices were all the targets of high-profile campaigns aimed against infrastructures linked to opposing ideologies. Attacks by cybercriminals against weak targets have become more sophisticated, with DDoS, ransomware, and hacking for a good cause frequently making news. Governments worldwide started enacting laws and regulations to counter the growing threats brought on by cyberattacks on large and small organisations.


Business leaders will be let down if they anticipate post-pandemic operations to return to normal this year. The new normal will consist of ongoing disruption, a lack of resources, and increased cybercrime. As a result, security managers will be in the limelight, and risk will be the guiding principle for 2023. Every day, external attacks and unprotected data put businesses in danger. Many people are unaware that their company is a target. But with only one adjustment to their security posture, companies may drastically cut or even eliminate the danger. Your company could lessen the threat posed by these trends by searching externally for data leaks and threats.

Staying educated about new advances and cutting-edge trends is crucial in the fast-paced, high-stakes world of risk management. To develop and implement advanced risk management frameworks that measurably improve security performance, governance, and business outcomes, you require deep domain experience. 

How can Excelien help

At Excelien, we are not just a team but a multifaceted ensemble of seasoned security experts. Our vast knowledge and experience allow us to navigate the intricate market landscapes, intricately aligning with your unique business needs. We transcend the traditional approach, pioneering the discovery of hidden risks, providing rich insights, and conducting nuanced analyses.

Our proficiency extends to selecting the perfect vendors, individually suited to your requirements. Beyond assessments, we offer comprehensive perspectives, reflecting on real-world cases where our recommendations have facilitated success for clients with comparable needs.

Interested in discovering a tailored solution that is the right fit for you? Engage with us. Schedule a consultation with our specialists and uncover the boundless possibilities of how Excelien can elevate your security measures to new heights. Your success is our commitment, and we are excited to embark on this journey with you.

Banks are investing in cloud technology as a significant priority. According to a recent survey by American Banker, over 40% of executives consider cloud technology among their top five spending priorities. Additionally, 80% of respondents expect to migrate at least 20% of their computing infrastructure to the cloud by 2023.

This shift towards cloud adoption is appropriate due to the advantages it offers banks, such as scalable resources based on usage and the ability to avoid unnecessary onsite hardware purchases to meet increasing resource demands. However, banks currently face three major challenges in managing cloud effectively. 

The first challenge is the need for more visibility, as they need to understand their cloud usage, deployment details, and locations to make the most of it. Increased cloud spending can lead to cloud sprawl and loss of control.

The second challenge is agility, which allows banks to act quickly based on information. Legacy solutions can hinder this advantage, making it crucial for banks to identify areas they need to modernise to enhance their agility.

The third challenge is managing cloud spending efficiently. While the cloud provides cost-effective solutions, expenses can escalate beyond control without proper oversight.

To address these challenges and stay competitive, banks can adopt a CloudOps approach, emphasising visibility, automation, and continuous optimisation in the cloud. This approach aligns business objectives with cloud operations, providing banks with a complete understanding of their cloud-based services, identifying areas for improvement and optimising operations.

Intelligent automation can enhance flexibility, allowing banks to adapt to changing conditions swiftly. Moreover, optimisation based on the principles of continuous integration and continuous delivery from DevOps can help banks save money.

Nevertheless, the elastic nature of the cloud presents challenges in managing resources effectively. Many banks may find themselves surprised by their monthly cloud spending and its rapid growth without a clear strategy to control it. However, with the right approach and solutions, banks can optimise their cloud operations, ensuring efficient resource utilisation and cost control.

How Excelien Can Help Financial Services

Of course, it’s one thing to talk about CloudOps for banks; it’s another to implement it at scale.

Excelien can help. we can help banks discover what they have in the cloud and what they can do to optimise these resources. Companies can also use these tools to significantly reduce their computing costs.

Excelien also can help banks by finding unused resources in current cloud infrastructure and then offloading those resources to other consumers. In other words, Excelien allows banks to effectively sublease some of their excess cloud resources to other businesses, allowing them to eliminate cloud sprawl and reduce costs without compromising performance.

Banks need the cloud to stay current, connect with fintech firms and effectively address emerging market challenges. But just having the cloud isn’t enough. Banks need to boost visibility, improve flexibility and control costs to make the most of cloud deployments.

Contact the team at or book an appointment with our specialists.

Nothing is more crucial for your business’s connectivity than ensuring you always have quick, dependable internet access. To ensure that data is safe and applications function correctly, you need security and performance features in addition to high-speed internet. SD-WAN and SASE are helpful in this situation.

With its robust technology for creating quick and secure connections, SD-WAN is the foundation of connectivity. SASE also has features for enterprise-level security and application performance that are unmatched by competing services. These resources work effectively together to boost any company’s productivity and efficiency.

What is SD-WAN? 

Networking techniques have changed paradigms with the introduction of SD-WAN. Due to their reliance on complicated hardware and complicated configuration protocols, traditional WANs can be challenging and time-consuming to administer. In contrast, SD-WAN is software-driven, making the system’s administration more straightforward and flexible. Thanks to this, businesses can change their network settings as their needs change, which boosts productivity and lowers costs.

Fundamentally, SD-WAN uses intelligent traffic routing techniques and cutting-edge software algorithms to improve performance at a fraction of the cost of traditional WANs. With the aid of these advanced technologies, SD-WAN enables enterprises to monitor real-time network activity from any location quickly and to swiftly optimise network architecture in response to shifting weather conditions or spikes in traffic. Overall, SD-WAN has emerged as a crucial tool for managing contemporary networks, allowing companies across all sectors to thrive in the digital age. 

What is SASE? 

SASE, or secure access service edge, is a cloud-based security architecture that unifies various security functions into a single, integrated platform. These functions include firewall as a service (FWaaS), web security, identity and access management (IAM), and data loss prevention (DLP).

Additionally, SASE offers fine-grained visibility into network activities, enabling organisations to recognise and address security concerns immediately. Businesses may safeguard their data from various threats with the help of this all-encompassing security strategy. 

How SD-WAN and SASE Work Together

While SD-WAN and SASE are crucial components of contemporary networking, combined, they can offer businesses of all sizes a genuinely transformational experience. SD-WAN provides the quick and dependable connectivity required to enable cloud-based services and applications. SASE simultaneously increases security by adding a layer, ensuring that data is safe from internal and external attacks. Additionally, SASE simplifies network security management by combining several security operations into a single platform, enabling enterprises to protect their data. 

Benefits of Using SD-WAN and SASE Together 

There are several benefits to using SD-WAN and SASE together, which include:

 Increased flexibility and agility

SD-WAN and SASE are software-based solutions that don’t require complicated hardware or configuration and can be rapidly and easily installed. This increases the agility and flexibility of enterprises by enabling them to alter their network architecture as their demands change quickly. Additionally, SASE simplifies network security management by combining several security operations into a single platform, making it more straightforward for enterprises to protect their data. 

Performance gains

SD-WAN optimises network traffic using sophisticated algorithms, and SASE offers granular visibility into network operations. Businesses may quickly and easily discover potential performance issues with this feature set, which enhances overall performance.

Reduced costs

SASE can assist in reducing the cost of WAN by up to 90%, whereas SD-WAN can help reduce the cost of security infrastructure by up to 50%.


The Challenges of Integrating SD-WAN and SASE 

Despite the numerous advantages of combining SD-WAN and SASE, there are a few difficulties that should be taken into account:

The complexity of management and implementation

The complexity of setup and management when combining SD-WAN and SASE is one of the main difficulties. Both options require proper deployment and configuration, which might make your network architecture significantly more complex.

Cost increases

The initial cost of deploying these solutions can be high, even though SD-WAN and SASE can help you lower the overall cost of your WAN and security architecture. Fees may also rise due to the difficulty of managing and executing these solutions.

Lack of standardisation

Currently, there is no accepted method for integrating SD-WAN and SASE, meaning each supplier has its own proprietary solution. Due to the lack of standardisation, businesses may need help to compare multiple vendors and choose the best solution for their needs.

Increased security risks

SASE can help your network become more secure, but it also brings new hazards that must be controlled. Incorrect configuration of your SASE system, for instance, could allow attackers to get over your security measures and access your data. To correctly configure security measures, SASE also necessitates that enterprises have a thorough awareness of their network traffic. If your company lacks this knowledge, you can endanger your data’s security. 

Businesses may enhance the performance and security of their networks with the help of SD-WAN and SASE, two potent technologies. These solutions must be designed appropriately and implemented to prevent rising complexity and expenses. Additionally, it may be challenging to analyse several solutions and select the best one for your needs due to the need for more consistency across supplies. With that said, SD-WAN with SASE may be the best option for your company if you’re seeking a strategy to expand the speed and security of your network. 


How Excelien can help

Excelien partners with leading providers in the industry, such as Masergy, Aryaka and Globalgig – we can help navigate the market to find the best solution based upon your requirements.

Contact the team at or book an appointment with our specialists.


The debate over cloud costs has intensified as cloud platforms have become the primary focus for most IT deployments. Despite the significant growth in cloud adoption over the last decade, a considerable amount of technology remains non-cloud or on-premises.

Initially, it was believed that public cloud services would reduce the cost per bit of compute and storage resources and provide more account-friendly operating costs. However, while cloud costs can be classified as operating costs, they are still a significant expense. As a result, many companies are discovering that cloud resources are less cost-effective than their on-premises counterparts.

Nonetheless, cloud adoption has successfully accelerated the pace businesses operate and enable the rapid deployment of new services and digital products.

The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the cloud’s potential as a remote work and retail delivery solution. Additionally, cloud technology provides increased flexibility in purchasing compute and storage resources, allowing companies to procure more IT resources to support R&D, ongoing product development, and internal digital transformation initiatives.


“There is a newfound emphasis on the visibility of cloud costs”

Recent surveys and discussions with professionals have revealed that cost has become a new priority for cloud adoption. Organisations are interested in comparing the costs of cloud hosting with on-premises resources.

To quote Peter Drucker, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure.” The first step to understanding costs is to track and analyse them. Easier said than done. Many cloud services are still purchased in ad-hoc ways or by business lines operating in the “shadow IT” model. CEOs and CFOs are looking to put an end to this.

Cloud Cost Management (CCM) and Financial Operations (FinOps) tools have emerged to address this need for cost visibility. These tools offer sophisticated methods for measuring and managing cloud costs, including evaluating the impact on networking and security adjacencies. Additionally, managers would like to assign costs to specific business units for accountability purposes.

Cloud management companies like Flexera, Apptio, and Virtana are developing CCM and FinOps tools. CCM provides intelligent bill analysis across AWS, Azure, and GCP and alerts on unexpected changes that drive cloud spending, offering actionable saving recommendations. Flexera’s FinOps module integrates into the Flexera One platform, part of a comprehensive IT asset management strategy. Apptio focuses on understanding the operating costs in Amazon Web Services (AWS) and commitments to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) implementations. Virtana’s CCM offers ongoing cloud cost optimisation, uniquely emphasising balancing performance, risk, and cost.

While platform tools such as IBM’s Turbonomics and VMware’s CloudHealth provide some visibility into usage as it happens, they fall short of providing cost remediation information useful for finance and engineering teams to have cost-reduction conversations.

Emerging solutions focus on arbitrage between cloud offerings, and Kubernetes compute capabilities to reduce compute costs. CAST AI is a promising startup that helps organisations understand Kubernetes costs across various areas, including cost monitoring, security management, autoscaling, rightsizing, and spot instance automation. CAST AI has a unique business model in which it charges customers based on a percentage of the amount of money saved on compute costs.


“It’s not just cloud services, networking too”


The networking industry has recognised the potential to enhance the comprehension of cloud costs. Cloud networking companies like Aviatrix and Prosimo understand that networking is a critical enabler of the cloud. It can be leveraged to provide better visibility and management of cloud service access since cloud services are connected through networks.

Aviatrix’s CostIQ uses distributed telemetry to measure shared cloud network usage and assigns the results to the appropriate cost centres. Prosimo’s Full Stack Cloud Transit platform provides insights into application requirements and performance, which can be used to optimise cloud networking experiences and costs. Both companies are also working on other areas to maximise cloud expenses. We can expect new products from them soon.

Today, with many companies relying on a more intricate cloud operating structure that involves more cloud data, more cloud providers, improved cloud data management, and better cloud security, the financial consequences of daily decisions can significantly impact a company’s cloud bill and overall operating budget.


Zoom was one of the most common words used in 2019. For many some older generations maybe the new MSN, the uptake wasn’t just businesses allowing users to continue WFH but consumers having access and meeting friends and family online.

Excelien is excited to have Zoom now part of our portfolio of vendors. We see Zoom as an easy-to-use, dependable and innovative platform for video-first unified communication, which also delivers phone, meetings, webinars and team chat.

The advisory services work with several vendors and continually analyse these but, Zoom is architected different, it’s the only platform which was built with video as its root foundation, this at its core is why customers like Walmart, Uber and Hubspot rely on this the reliability and scalability, not only that; Zoom also have a customer footprint in over 94% of countries around the world!

The common association with Zoom is video, which is true, but the video-first communications platform also offers:

Zoom has, and will continue to mould the way enterprise organisations globally communicate and connect. Zoom comprises all the tools you need into one simple platform – from 1:1 meetings to meeting rooms to large broadcasted webinars. It’s a seamless experience on desktop, mobile and conference rooms. With Zoom, companies have seen an 85% increase in video usage and VOIP six times more than traditional telephony – so people join fast and are more productive, and companies save money.

If you’ve come straight to this page, you may have missed how we work, Excelien has partnered with Zoom on an advisory partnership; this means, you have free access to our pre-sales team, consultants and 0% margin pricing.

  • What’s the most important priority to you with video collaboration?
  • What would you like to accomplish with Zoom, drive sales, expand the market or more?
  • What features are you currently using in your existing solution? What are some specific features you require but do not now have?
  • What do you do for IM and Presence today?
  • What are you using for voice today – on-prem vs PBX?

Excelien have a range of experts experienced in delivering Zoom, speak to one of the consultants and understand how we can help you in your journey.

Test your Phone Talk to a Human


IT Procurement consists of 4 pillars:
People, Process, Technology and Supply Chain.

At Excelien, we strive to meet and deliver on all these.

We have an experienced and more importantly, an enthusiastic team to support our clients.
We put in SLA’s into our procurement agreements to ensure our service is measurable.
We invest in technology to simplify the process, whether that’s a single system to track over 260 couriers or online portal.
We continue to grow our supply chain with a vast network of distributors and suppliers worldwide, meaning we can source stock quickly, be competitive in price and more importantly deliver.
Speak to one of our team, and see how we can help your IT procurement strategy at


The time is now to change the contact centre vision.

When you think call centre, it’s usually not good – PPI, Have you had a crash recently that wasn’t your fault – this still happens but think contact centres, what comes to mind? If it’s the BBC programme, then we need to change your mindset. The industry is one of the largest with a market size of £3bn and employing around 1.3 million in the UK – it’s a big deal.  

The journey from call centre to contact centre

We want to say historically (but it is still the case today) that the vision of a typical call centre is a floor lined with agents wall to wall, floor to floor taking calls all day – these days are gone, and technology along with the world has moved on thanks to the ‘contact centre’. Similar to how mobiles have moved from briefcases to smartphones, we now see the contact centre as more than a machine that churns out sales and services, to becoming an integral and intelligent asset with a broader range of business roles.

The output has moved from being a simple sales function to, enabling better and personalised customer experience, more accessible and in-depth reporting and a catalogue of integrations. These are the critical components of omnichannel customer service for any organisation, allowing customers to contact a company, through whatever method is best suited to them.

Digital transformation has accelerated with technology; the contact centre is no different, it’s been enhanced with features from skill-based routing, social media integrations, CRM integrations, automated sales training, AI predicting trends and workforce management. Contact centres have moved on from data-driven to analytic driven processes, delivering an unparallel service through a more personalised customer experience.

Along came COVID

COVID changed all industries, especially contact centres, where the environment was in large open plan offices, employees working with close proximities of each other, meant that these were high-risk areas, vulnerable to COVID. In the UK, we remember when the lockdown was enforced on BBC in the evening, and overnight, offices were forced to shut down, and contact centres were in the same position.

Many of these weren’t ready, working from home wasn’t viable, PCI compliance wasn’t possible, reporting wasn’t possible, softphone wasn’t possible, system access wasn’t possible and so on…some just weren’t ready.

Disaster recovery is a contingency plan, and strategies are usually in place to ensure, businesses can continue as usual should the office not. Contact Centres struggled. With a massive surge in demand from internet shopping, economic changes and business changes, the cracks began to show and were clearly visible. Homebase should have had a boom in business turned off contact centre services, retailers not being able to take payments because of PCI not being available to WFH staff, Virgin Media contacting their 5.5 million broadband customers to ask them not to call.

Excelien knows it’s time to change and adapt, and continually adapt with the best contact centre technology to enhance the services you deliver, the outcomes your business produces and how you help your customers. With digital transformation across all industries and the ability to have what you want almost in an instant, customers now expect a certain level of service, so whether you’re a small retailer, a large bank, insurance firm – customer experience is a priority.

Customers build the company and are more critical than ever in the climate we’re in, contact centres need be a significant component of an enhanced customer service offering for your company, empowering consumers to communicate with you in a meaningful way, in the channel of their preference.

Tomorrow is the future, but the time is now. 

It’s still not clear waters yet.

We’re not out of the woods yet.

COVID forced a change predicted years from now in buying and selling behaviour. Consumers are moving online as their primary way of shopping and how a business manages its customers is more important than ever. We don’t particularly like to focus on doom and gloom. Still, the conversation of COVID and Christmas is already being debating, and with the various systems being thrown around whether its Tier, Circuit Breaker or regional/national lockdown, the ability to sail this one calmly is a priority.

COVID has forced a change in buying and selling behaviour. Consumers are buying more online and with the most crucial shopping season for retailers on the horizon, how businesses deal with their customers is more important than ever. The “Will COVID steal Christmas” debate is already on. Throw in the potential of another national lockdown and the ability to weather the storm and come out the other side really is blown wide open.

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail

The time came, and it will continually come in which businesses need to adapt and embrace all that’s on offer from contact centres. Not solely from a disaster recovery perspective but where they can supercharge customer experience, gain more insights into buying trends and potentially save money.

Excelien is your advisory partner for contact centre technology industrywide, if you would like to speak to one of our experienced experts to understand the market, please talk to us today.

Excelien is your consultative partner for contact centre technology, if you would like to know more, please speak to one of our experts today. 

Test your Phone Talk to a Human

Hackers a difficult people to understand, they don’t discriminate, they’re looking for any open door, every opportunity, to steal data, make money whether small or large amounts, cause disruption in business and ultimately chaos!

Enterprise businesses to SMB can fall prey, and at Excelien, we work our clients to ensure they’re aware of the latest technology, with access to our security consultants and security assessments. We’ve all seen headlines with companies who you would expect to have a concrete fortress become victims. The pandemic seems to have accelerated some of the most significant breaches that have taken place in 2020. Here’s a reminder of some of the headline-grabbing attacks, and the stark reality and severity of these cyber attacks.

WHO – World Health Organisation

WHO has been giving guidance through this pandemic but in the midst of was part of a massive data leak of 25,000 email addresses and passwords unlawfully accessed. It was common belief to be part of a broader attempt to disrupt the battle against Coronavirus, with organisations such WHO, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Gates Foundation and more being hit by these team of elite hackers.

WHO confirmed a phishing campaign was used and targeted at its employees. WHO’s CIO, Bernardo Mariano stated, “Ensuring the security of health information for the Member States and privacy of users interacting with us a priority for WHO at all times, but also particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, We are grateful for the alerts we receive from the Member States and the private sector. We are all in this fight together.” It is still not clear if this cyber attack had any significant effect. According to WHO, the leaked information did impact an older extranet system, causing them to migrate to a more secure infrastructure.


The Twitter breach was probably the most visible and famous attacks to date, with celebrities from all walks of life such reality star Kim Kardashian to tech guru Elon Musk to the ex-president Barack Obama. Though this was an attack which took place over a few hours, the exposure was huge.

The attack targeted a small group of Twitter’s employees through a phone spearphishing campaign, enabling hackers to gain access to Twitter’s internal support system, which then allowed them to target further employees. According to Twitter, using the acquired credentials, around 130 Twitter accounts had been hit, Tweeting from 45 of those, accessing the direct messaging feature of 36 and downloading the Twitter Data of 7. Twitter Support released a statement explaining, “This attack relied on a significant and concerted attempt to mislead certain employees and exploit human vulnerabilities to gain access to our internal systems.” The actual outcome of this elaborate hack isn’t clear, the incident has led to significant distrust with Twitter and its security protocols, and will most likely live on as one of the largest in cybersecurity disasters to a social media platform.


The use of Zoom has skyrocketed through the pandemic to enable the working from home to be the new normal. Zoom overnight became the big name, the go-to for a virtual meeting – the cybercriminals saw this, and soon became a target.

Cyberattacks have relentlessly targeted Zoom in the past and in April 2020 did in fact experience a data breach. Over 500,000 Zoom passwords were stolen and available for sale or even being given away for free across dark web forums. The attack impacted everything from personal accounts to financial and educational organisations. Victims’ login credentials, private meeting URLs and HostKeys were released. It’s believed that attackers used old stolen credentials, some from 2013. They used a credential stuffing attack which used multiple bots to avoid the same IP address for numerous Zoom accounts and to prevent detection as a denial of service (DoS) attack.

Zoom responded, “We have already hired multiple intelligence firms to find these password dumps, and the tools used to create them, As well as a firm that has shut down thousands of websites attempting to trick users into downloading malware or giving up their credentials.” Zoom will continue to examine the breach, are shutting accounts which they have found to be compromised, prompting users to change their passwords to something more secure, and investing into more technology solutions to bolster Zooms efforts.

Marriott International

A very public and large-scale security breach at the beginning of this year with a leading hotel group, Marriott, led to the data of more than 5.2 million guests data having their data compromised. Marriott believes hackers might have gained login credentials of two employees either by credential stuffing or phishing and subsequently able to gain access to information for customers part of the Marriott loyalty scheme.

Even though Marriott disclosed the security breach on March 31, 2020, it’s concluded that the data had been taken around a month before and included personal information including names, birthdates, and telephone numbers, travel news, and loyalty program information. It isn’t the first time that the hotel has announced a significant data breach – in 2018, they encountered a cyber-attack leaving 500 million guests affected.

MGM Resorts

Although it started in 2019, the data breach experienced by major hospitality group, MGM Resorts, continues in 2020. And it may be much larger than initially reported – now understood to have affected more than 142 million hotel guests (14 times the 10.6 million reported in February).

The attack came to light in an ad published on the dark web marketplace offering to sell the data of 142,479,937 MGM guests for just over $2,900. According to the seller, MGM Grand Hotels data as part of this. Hijacked information is assumed to include name, phone numbers, home address, email addresses, and birth date of guests, including those of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Justin Bieber and prominent government officials.

An MGM Resort spokesperson confirmed that impacted guests were notified about the data breach and added: “We are confident that no financial, payment card or password data was involved in this matter.” Although this is considered “phone book” information, a fear is that the personal data will continue to be sold, which opens up opportunities for spearphishing campaigns.


Garmin known for its smartwatch and wearables had shut several of its services in July to deal with a ransomware attack, that encrypted its internal network and some production systems.

The company is still planning to have some severe downtime following this attack as they prepare for a multi-day maintenance window to deal with the aftermath, this includes the website going offline, Garmin Connect and Garmin Aviation services, and even manufacturing lines within Asia.

Garmin said the outage had also impacted its call centres, putting the company in a situation of being unable to answer emails, calls, and online chats.

The attack didn’t pass quietly and caused headaches for the company’s customers, who rely on the Garmin Connect service to sync data about bike rides and runs to Garmin’s servers, all of which also went down on.

It wasn’t just consumer wearables effected, flyGarmin was also down which supports the company’s line of aviation equipment. Another blow, following this outage, updates weren’t available for this software an FAA requirement to run an up-to-date version of this database.

The extent of the breach continues unknown to third-party observers. Besides consumer sportswear, wearables and smartwatches, Garmin also delivers mapping, tracking solutions and equipment for the maritime and automotive industry. The actual impact of the ransomware attack on these services remains unclear.

What Can We Learn from These Cyber Attacks?

Businesses need to be diligent. Cybersecurity always needs to be in front of mind and system as well as routinely assessed. Companies from small to the enterprise can easily fall prey of phishing schemes, ransomware, DDoS, malware, and other attacks leading to data breaches.

Excelien works with you to take the necessary precautions is the best chance they have at staying secure. Along with detection and response tools, authentication protocols, and ongoing employee security awareness training can make the most significant difference.

Test your Phone Talk to a Human

Excelien has a long-established relationship working with RingCentral delivering UCaaS and CCaaS solutions within the finance industry. We’ve helped organisations consolidate global telecom estates to a single platform, revolutionise their contact centre and boost productivity and efficiency with RingCentral.

We look at how Fintech startups, as well as established banking, accounting, and insurance companies, rely on RingCentral to help them with the challenge of balancing cost, regulations, and confidentiality in a fast, ever-changing digital world. Excelien with RingCentral discusses how an all-in-one secure communications and collaboration platform gives organisations the opportunity to deliver a top-tier personalised experience while making significant budget savings.

Join this webinar on July 22nd at 10 am (BST) to discover why RingCentral is a secure, compliant, and unified communications solution built for financial services.

What will be covered?

– Drive user productivity and efficiency gains
– Consolidation of business communications into one single app
– Customise with market-leading integrations with your existing technologies
– Increase customer engagement and satisfaction
– Deliver competitive, quality customer service
– The highest level of security for financial data

Sign up here!


Companies are continually increasing their international presence into further markets, whether it’s to lure new customers, looking to expand product expertise, or to support growth in emerging markets. Following the correct approach is vital, so without the right method, you could be left open to unpredictable or unmanagable costs, loss in productivity, or even jeopardise your market share.

Ensuring the right technology supports you is one piece to the puzzle, and making sure you have an effective procurement strategy for your new office/s is crucial within this.

Excelien explores how to formulate and develop on an efficient and productive IT procurement strategy and allow you to expand into further markets whether its the US, EMEA, APAC or Africa. We highlight six essential elements to look out for, follow these, and you can be confident that you’re making the right choices.

The Foundation of IT Procurement Planning

To be successful in expanding into further markets, define an accurate blueprint for how you envisage your IT procurement to look in your new region, whether its a carbon copy of your current site or completely new.

It’s tempting to keep IT procurement local, and with current suppliers. Still, often this adds costs and complexity and can result in timezone issues, delivery issues or non-compliant IT solutions that are not fit for purpose.

Let us revise that plan. It’s better to build a procurement function within your new territory or outsource procurement to a partner with deep experience within the region.

Why Tech Specs Matter

Once you’ve set up the infrastructure to support the users, policies to be enforced, and a strategy which allows your to expand seamlessly with your growth plan, you need to think about what solutions will support your users and business needs.

Balancing your decision here is no picnic; you can under specify requirements and achieve short term goals with budgets but fail long-term goals related to growth and risking employee productivity. But on the other side, you can over-specify, over-spend and lose credibility.

It’s not as simple as getting the raw technical specs correct. Take into consideration what is the purpose of the office, is it offering the same service as the head office, will it have a support team, are the users home or office-based. Choosing the right device for your employees is imperative, and can support talent acquisition.

Gen Z and Millennials, for instance, aspire to be part of a company that lets them work on tablets, phones, and PCs alike—and preferably across all devices seamlessly. Considering that by 2025 roughly 75% of the workforce will be made up of millennials and Gen Z, your device procurement could make a big difference to your organisation’s ability to attract talent in the future.

The Hidden Costs of Great Tech

The Apple iPhone was created in 2007, fast forward 13 years and think how fast technology has moved, take this approach to your technology and where the market is now, and how it will look down the road when you’re making procurement decisions.

A common problem a few years ago, you may order hundreds of Laptops for a vendor whether its HP, Lenovo, Apple or Dell, only for them to change their charging port to USB-C after. Suddenly you have hundreds of laptops that use old peripherals, and consequently, the market price has also dropped. Frustration from your employees because they haven’t got the latest technology and for you now having assets which have moved on.

But partner with an experienced and knowledgable procurement provider, whether that is local or in another region, you can be assured your tech solutions, and purchases are future-proofed.

An experienced procurement provider will ensure they are always ahead of the market news and can relay these updates on to you, often companies turn to tin or box shifters low cost and low service value. With the right partner, you’ll get the right solutions for the right region, with no nasty surprises that cost you time and money.

Consider How Things Operate Across Borders.

Once you step across the borders, there’s more to consider and acknowledge how your systems and IT solutions deliver their services. You also need to think carefully about work cultures, and people work.

It reaps benefits to consider the softer side of management in geo-dispersed locations, such as how to:

  • Work productively across varied languages and maintain global communications.
  • Navigate diverse business cultures (for example, some countries may be more flexible to remote working, while others may be very centred around working in the same office).
  • Get the most from a different hiring pool; diverse skills and expertise can benefit your organisation.
  • Efficiently pay and receive payment in different currencies.
  • Manage varied customs, laws, and tariffs on imports and exports.

There’s, even more, to think about if you’re expanding into multiple regions simultaneously. Do you plan to move into a few different countries at the same time?

For example, will you need different keyboards to cater for different languages between your territories? And what happens when your people have to travel between regions? Can your IT equipment and peripherals help people work seamlessly wherever they go, or will they be stuck having to carry around an endless power supply adapters?

Where will your equipment fit

More often than not, the kit you procure goes straight to the end-user or direct to the data centre. But, what do you do about the charging cables, keyboards and other peripherals you want to keep in stock?  

Filling up your new office with equipment which is there as surplus and back up, is not efficient practise, also difficult to monitor if you’re based overseas. 

This leaves with you a few options, look into a just-in-time fulfilment approach, either from your suppliers directly, or through a trusted procurement partner. Alternatively, if you need to stock hold because hardware might be build to order or have lead times associated, you can look at your procurement partner to set up secure and easy to manage fulfilment centres. By procuring solutions as and when you need them, you can get everyone the devices and kit they require.

Technical & Cultural Challenges with a Global Procurement Partner

Embarking in new markets is exciting, you learn and develop new skills, and this requires a comprehensive understanding of the technologies the users, organisation, and you need – and the providers that can offer it in those new locations you expand into.

Beyond understanding and overcoming the technical challenges, consideration for culture and customs is something which requires significant focus. For example, how does your new office view remote working or contractors? Is working from home an option available, or will you need to remote meeting and collaboration solutions? What about contacting each other, do they have preferred methods like IM, Socials, or mobile? Do users regularly travel from country to country?

Supporting Staff

In an ideal world, you want people on the ground with a mixture of extensive procurement and fulfilment expertise and comprehensive local knowledge. It’s these factors that will make sure your expansion goes as smoothly as possible. 

Nevertheless, obtaining these skills internally is going to be a challenge, unnecessary commercial overhead, and time-consuming. Countless businesses lean on a procurement partner to manage the burden for them.

As you know, there’s more to procurement than just getting the right kit to the right people. If you treat procurement as a purely transactional function, that’s what you’ll get. But if you’re willing to work with a strategic partner, your procurement can add high-level value to the business. This will enable you to pursue your expansion and digital transformation initiatives with confidence.

At Excelien, we have extensive experience in navigating both the technical and cultural challenges of global expansion. In fact, we’ve helped some of the biggest businesses in the world successfully grow into new territories.

Are you interested in expanding into further countries? It’s likely that you’re experiencing (or will soon encounter) a range of technical, financial, and cultural challenges.

If you’d like to talk through these challenges and learn more about how Excelien can help you solve them, contact one of our procurement experts.

Test your Phone Talk to a Human