There is never ‘something for nothing’!
by Nicholas Ashton, CEO/CIO, CommSmart Global Group
There is always a cost in one direction or another and we have all been duped with slick advertisements, offers and pure lies by suppliers and advertisers.
Anything connected to cyber that is offered totally free means one of two things:
- They cannot market or sell it, due to quality and effectiveness
- It is not really free as it will cost you in lack of ability and the end results
The internet has given rise to an overabundance of erudite and addictive free options. But it comes with a price tag.
Even Facebook is not really free!
A perfect example is a Spanish tapas which are a global gastronomic phenomenon that can be enjoyed in all parts of the world. It is the ‘social snack’ often served for free every time you buy a beer — a tasty form of ‘content marketing’, which draws you and disguises the cheap beer or surroundings which entice you to stay longer and spend more on overpriced cheap beer.
In other words: It is not really free. It’s pure social marketing, customer retention and often an excuse to increase the price of your half diluted excuse for a beer.
Those are the marketplace forces of capitalism and not an eventful happy hour.
In every business, there must be a transaction of some kind of value. Facebook, Twitter, Google, Apple, Snapchat and all free news media and so on, are no different than tapas.
So is IBM and their I2 Cop Link, which is a data analytic toolset that manipulates the crime data of departments and interlinks all. Or supposedly!
Here is the USA we know IBM’s tactics oh so well. They purchased Cop Link and promised great things that never materialized with a product that is far from exciting in its failure in its ability. Example as an end user to set up the necessary systems and translations of data is extremely costly and not FREE! It does not have a toolset that has pure unabashed Link Analysis which, I may say in our AVCC solution is faultless in searching for information at one fell swoop in seconds.
Sorry enough of my annoyance that they would try to entice people with ’FREE’!
Free or Freemium is not the actual price, but a way to catch you off guard. Be rest assured, a cost and payment will fall somewhere else down the road. It is in the ability in failing to deliver the end results that you require and demand to solve the crime with analytic toolsets. Might look snazzy to the eye and a screen full of information, but is it the real information that has been searched, checked and secured?
When the price is zero, it is a totally completely different market than if the price was one British pound or American dollar.
It is either an add-on sale or lack of real content that is the concern. With some freebies, there now enters the invisible third party. Without much disturbance, you will have a secret new party involved in the transaction. The middle man of the digital ménage à trois is moving the cash register out of your view. You don’t know him. But he knows everything about you. Or more to the point, your data. They will now sell you ancillary services such as ‘Cloud Storage’, as you are hooked and believe you need them and cannot live without them. Sadly they are just like the original, lacking in capability and content. If you have never looked and reviewed other capable products you would never know the difference.
Take off the Blinkers and do not be hoodwinked!
In effect this mean that you are not the customer, you are the product in a highly lucrative cyber business.
That is IBM and I2 Cop Link!
The product is the information we voluntarily tap into, one service after another for the enrichment of endless databases — better known as big data.
It is complicated topography for doing business even for Facebook and the other big corporations but it seems that most of the digital economy will depend on this model one way or another.
The main currency in data collection is trust but it can be hard to actually see through the mechanisms that decide the price thus undermining classic economic certainties.
We might as well get used to that kind of business in the digital economy. A lot of new everyday products will be possible because of free. But to run a business based on free it should be worth every penny or red cent for the end users.
Someone has to pay for the development and operation of some of the advanced digital opportunities. One thing is for sure; it is not free to have 12,000 employees at Facebook or 57,000 at Google.
Even ourselves and the Group which serves customers in more than 180 countries and has offices in about 40 countries. Employing approximately 30,000 people of whom half are in North America, know nothing is free!
So the sale of data is, therefore, our business. And once that is your business model the only way to improve the business is to gather even more data about users. It is an art form to be able to manipulate the data for clients and law enforcement globally, having down-to-earth toolsets within our Accurint Virtual Crime Center and Social Media Scraping/Monitoring which is second to none and NOT FREE!
And this is where there is still a vast difference between us, tapas and IBM I2 Cop Link.
It is not enough to be just consumed around the world, you must be able to collect all sorts of information about users at a scale that can be done only digitally, precisely and compliantly, having an analytic toolset to exact the information in a format that produces ‘the results’.
The ease of operation for street level police officer usage starts with a Dashboard, which brings all the crime data to a single screen on a Smartphone, tablet or computer screen. Knowing your prior historical events before the shift briefing maximizes efficiency for all. These dashboards can be updated and change as you personally wish.
For a safety factor, the access to all data/information by a single name or address is right in the palm of your hand. No more ‘Go Fish’ for information with phone calls and faxed information. It is productivity personified!
21 years ago our entrance into Digital Policing started! Progressed with our law enforcement capabilities and developed analytics tools that grasped the eye of law enforcement agencies and the U.S. Department of Defense with our unique ‘predictive analytical tools’. Which was purchased by DoD and used in Iraq & Afghanistan for predicting roadside IEDs. Working with British & American troops, saving an extraordinary amount of lives. This working environment allowed us to hone our skills which had to be, no demanded to be, precise, as lives were at stake.
All within in the team are ex-law enforcement from differing divisions, we have an overall perspective of crime today and the methods being used to attempt to control the ever growing issues. This also includes a remarkable ‘Red Tagged’ team of computer engineers who know so much regarding the Dark web and White and Black Hat Hacking.
Our extraordinary talented worldwide team has developed and implements:
The economy of the digital volume game often begins with a great free party with an amazing happy hour. But as economist and Nobel laureate Milton Friedman wrote before the Internet was born:
“As with tapas, you may score a nice lovely meal for free. But the expensive beer can leave you with some serious hangovers.”
We do not sell you a hangover, we bring smiles to the officers, analysts, management, support staff and importantly, the victims and their families with the satisfaction in knowing we have completed the tasks to the best of our ability and won the day.
Let us raise a glass and converse!
Oh, make it a cup of coffee, you will understand why!
Telephone: +1 (330) 366.6860