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Then, Thursday! If you’re taking a ride today, consider checking out Morning Brew Daily’s interview with Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi to kill some time.

In today’s edition:

Secure by design

Ticket tumble

Speaking Socratese

—Tom McKay, Billy Hurley, Patrick Lucas Austin

SOFTWARE

Scout’s honor

a login screen where the username is "Get_Ur_Own_Account" Francis Scialabba

Dozens of tech firms have volunteered to sign a secure-by-design pledge endorsed by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), according to CIO Dive.

Companies that have signed on to the CISA initiative include Amazon Web Services, Google, and Microsoft, as well as a large number of cybersecurity firms. The Register reported the signatories announced their commitment at the RSA Conference 2024, with the expectation being that the 68 companies will share their progress on the pledge at the 2025 edition of the conference.

The pledge is entirely voluntary, isn’t legally binding, and CISA has no enforcement mechanism if the firms don’t follow through. Still, it includes a wide range of best practices signatories agree to adopt. Those include expanding multi-factor authentication across their products, reducing the use of default passwords, and demonstrating “actions taken toward enabling a significant measurable reduction of one or more vulnerability classes,” according to the text of the pledge.

Read more here.—TM

Do you work in IT or have information about your IT department you want to share? Email [email protected]. Want to go encrypted? Ask Tom for his Signal.

   

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IT OPERATIONS

Factored in

The logo for Github Sopa Images/Getty Images

The Achilles’ heel of security upgrades? User resistance.

After all, security features like two-factor authentication (2FA) can introduce friction for users, who often feel the added steps interfere with their ability to do their jobs. But Microsoft-owned GitHub, the world’s largest code repository, said it was able to implement a 2FA mandate for millions of users with relatively few setbacks.

GitHub recently reported that since 2FA became required for code contributors in March 2023, around 95% of them have opted in—and 2FA opt-in has risen by 54% among all other active contributors, such as commenters.

Besides user complaints, transitions to multi-factor authentication often run into obstacles like increased workloads for IT support teams. Yet GitHub says the number of support tickets for 2FA account recovery that required “significant human intervention” have decreased since May 2023 and is now 54% lower.

Mike Hanley, GitHub’s chief security officer and SVP of engineering, explained to IT Brew the company was wary of simply imposing 2FA requirements on users and planned its rollout strategy around user engagement.

“We felt very strongly this was an opportunity to help basically raise the bar for everyone,” Hanley said.

Read more here.—TM

Do you work in IT or have information about your IT department you want to share? Email [email protected]. Want to go encrypted? Ask Tom for his Signal.

   

IT STRATEGY

The code ahead

Hands with code typing on a computer Francis Scialabba

Yeah, you know Java, but do you know…Descartes?

As AI tools speed up code development (or aim to), IT bosses and directors who spoke with IT Brew are increasingly searching for more abstract skills in their coders, like a way with philosophy and anticipating user behavior.

“Building things is easy, because of the technologies that we have today. Deciding on what to build is going to become more and more important,” Sharan Gurunathan, VP of engineering for the cloud solutions group at the IT services and consulting firm Presidio, told IT Brew.

The what requires some understanding of human need, or user need, according to Gurunathan.

The code ahead. Programmers have plenty of AI options for code assistance. Amazon’s CodeWhisperer or Microsoft’s Copilot, for example, offers suggestions based on comments and existing code. The Presidio team has been experimenting with how large language models like OpenAI GPT-4, Llama, Amazon Titan, and Claude can support software development needs, like code review, Gurunathan said.

Keep reading here.—BH

Do you work in IT or have information about your IT department you want to share? Email [email protected].

   

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PATCH NOTES

Picture of data with "Clean Me" written on it + bottle of cleaner in front of it, Patch Notes Francis Scialabba

Today’s top IT reads.

Stat: 6%. That’s how much of global revenue the EU could fine platforms for violating the Digital Services Act. (Wired)

Quote: “That is not a good response, even if it’s correct.”—Juan Bottaro, principal staff software engineer at LinkedIn, on how the company is approaching developing its generative AI (CIO Dive)

Read: As tensions increase between China and the US, Microsoft asks employees in its Asian AI research labs to consider relocation. (the Wall Street Journal)

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