Digital Workplace Definitions

Digital Workplace is a broad and continuously evolving field, so in order to be consistent with the articles posted on the website, the following definitions have been provided: 

 

Bandwidth (computing) is best defined as the capacity to move information through a channel.  The more information you move through the channel, the more bandwidth you use; hence video uses much more bandwidth than, say, e-mail.  A bandwidth shortage occurs at any point when the demand to move information exceeds the capacity of the channel.  So when every iPhone user in New York City wants to watch a video or get online, AT&T's wireless channels get flooded, which can slow or prohibit data transfer.  In time, the mere slowdowns we see today may be eclipsed by full-scale information traffic jams unless we improve our networks to provide more bandwidth.

 

Biometrics Recognition refers to the identification of a person based on his anatomical characteristics. For example eye scans, finger prints or facial recognition. 

 

Confidentiality Agreements are typically found in an employment contract.  The employee agrees not to divulge company information or trade secrets to anyone.

 

Cloud Computing is the internet-based storage for files, applications, and infrastructure.  One could say cloud computing has been around for many years, but now a company may buy or rent space for their daily operations. 

 

Covenant Not to Compete is typically found in employment contracts.  The employee agrees not to quit his employment to go to work for a competitor or take clients from the company.  These agreements have been enforced in some states but not in others.  Many courts look at the reasonableness of the wording in the contract and the totality of the circumstances.

 

Data Mining is the process of extracting patterns from data.  Data mining is becoming an increasingly important tool to transform the data into information.

 

Data Theft is when someone takes data that is stored on another’s computer or data storage unit.  A large part of company business communications and property is stored as data, so data theft is on the rise.

 

E-Discovery is the understanding of electronic discovery in civil litigation.  Companies and employees may now use discovery to gain information that is in an electronic format.  Items often retrieved in e-discovery include (among a growing list of other forms of data) voicemails, e-mails, office documents, video footage, and text and instant messages.

 

Encryption is the process of transforming information (referred to as plaintext) using an algorithm (called cipher) to make it unreadable to anyone except those possessing special knowledge, usually referred to as a key.

 

E-Shredding or Virtual Shredding

Senders can destroy messages either remotely or automatically, without a recipient's consent or cooperation. And that gives senders unprecedented control over what they distribute.

 

Global Positioning System (GPS) is a global navigation satellite system that provides location information.  When a phone or any other device is enabled with a GPS chip, the phone or device can be tracked from anywhere around the world.

 

A Hacker is an unauthorized user who accesses a computer or network by circumventing its security system.

 

Industrial Security Firms specialize in protecting the equipment, data and product of a company.  Some companies use their own security force, others use outsourced industrial security firms.

 

Malware,short for malicious software, is software designed to infiltrate a computer system without the owner's knowledge.  The expression is a general term used by computer professionals to mean a variety of forms of hostile, intrusive, or annoying software or program codes.  The term "computer virus” is sometimes used as a catch-all phrase to include all types of malware, including true viruses.

 

Net Neutrality

The concept of “net neutrality’' holds that companies providing Internet service should treat all sources of data equally.  It has been the center of a debate over whether those companies can give preferential treatment to content providers who pay for faster transmission, or to their own content, in effect creating a two-tier Web, and about whether they can block or impede content representing controversial points of view. (Definition taken from The New York Times)

 

Phishing Attacks are scam e-mails.

 

Radio Frequency Identification tag (RFID) Card or Chips are very tiny chips that have a thin antenna that can transmit radio waves.  A reader is able to identify the chip. (Flat RFID cards are often used to grant entrance to a building.)

 

Sexting occurs when someone sends a text message via his/her cell phone to another that contains sexual content.

 

Sniffer Programs pick up credit and debit card numbers as they moved through a retailer’s computers.  The sniffer (hacker) then sells the information overseas.

 

Spam is electronic messaging systems (including most broadcast media, digital delivery systems) that send unsolicited bulk messages indiscriminately.  While the most widely recognized form of spam is e-mail spam, the term is applied to similar abuses in other media: instant messaging spam, web search engine spam, spam in blogs, wiki spam, online classified ads spam, mobile phone messaging spam, internet forum spam, and social networking spam.

 

USBDumper is a hacking tool that is designed to silently copy files off any USB flash drive connected to a PC and makes an image of the drive enabling someone with malicious intent to steal data or even use recovery tools to retrieve deleted material. 

 

 

Spoofing Cards allow users to change their voice and their cell number to mislead the receiver of the call.

 

Stuxnet Spyware Worm – A USB memory stick is the preferred method for using this worm.  The particular type of worm has launched sophisticated attacks on industrial computers worldwide yet no agency or corporation has figured out who is using the worm or why they are using the worm.

 

Telepresence is an advanced form of video chat.  People are able to speak to and see other people on a computer screen.  Telepresence allows for virtual meetings around the globe.

 

A Trojan Horse is a back door software program that seems harmless but is actually used to continually spy on a company and steal intellectual property.  Hackers figure out a way to circumvent all security and steal the data through some unknown method. The method or software is called a “Trojan Horse.”  Many think a Trojan Horse was used to hack into Google in China but it is not known for sure how it was actually accomplished.

 

Trade Secrets are ideas, concepts or information that has been developed by a company. Sometimes an employee of the company steals trade secrets for money and in return gives competing company the trade secrets.  This activity may be a crime and a tort.

 

TigerText is a program for your telephone.  The program allows you to delete both the text on your phone and the text on any other phone that contains your text.

 

A Virus is a computer program that can copy itself and infects a computer.  A true virus can spread from one computer to another (in some form of a code)  when its host is taken to the target computer.  For instance, a virus may be sent over a network or the Internet, or carried on a removable medium such as a floppy disk, CD, DVD, or USB drive.  Viruses can increase their chances of spreading to other computers by infecting files on a network system or a file system that is accessed by other computers.  Viruses often cause computers to crash and/or eliminate data from a computer.

 

Worm

A computer worm is a self-replicating malware computer program.  It uses a computer network to send copies of itself to other nodes (computers on the network) and it may do so without any user intervention.  This is due to security shortcomings on the target computer.  Unlike a virus, it does not need to attach itself to an existing program.  Worms almost always cause at least some harm to the network, if only by consuming bandwidth, whereas viruses almost always corrupt or modify files on a targeted computer.

Page last modified February 9, 2014