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Cellulant Gets Africa Business Continuity Institute’s Award for its Resilience

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Cellulant, a pan-African payments firm last evening received the most effective recovery of the year 2019 award from Africa’s Business Continuity Institute Awards (BCI) in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Cellulant received the award for resilience and business continuity following the 15th January terrorist attack at the Dusit Complex that took the lives of 6 staff members.

The BCI Awards is the most prestigious event globally in the business continuity calendar and honours business continuity and resilience professionals and organizations worldwide.

Cellulant wins BCI Africa Award for most effective recovery 2019

Speaking during the award ceremony in Johannesburg South Africa, Cellulant’s Group Head of Technical Operations, George Murage dedicated the award as a tribute to the memory of the Brave 6 who, through their sheer valiance, laid their lives on the line to save their colleagues.

Winners of the BCI Africa awards are automatically entered into the BCI Global Awards that takes place in London each November as part of the BCI Gala Dinner and Awards Ceremony.

Cellulant, Africa’s Phoenix

Despite Cellulant suffering the most number of casualties, from the January terrorist attack at their Kenyan Headquarters, the company became Africa’s phoenix. Their rise from the rubble and ashes at 14 Riverside to their current temporary offices at Delta and West End Towers was through sheer determination, an undying spirit and putting its people first.

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Cellulant’s Kenya team at their new temporary offices in West End Towers, Waiyaki Way

TechMoran caught up with Murage for a comment following the award announcement on what it took for the company to recover, how they were able to maintain business continuity and sustain operations.

TechMoran: Cellulant’s payment gateway is one of the major backbones for mobile and online payments in Africa. The events of January dealt a heavy blow with the heaviest toll being the technical departments, how well prepare were you, what are some of the actions you took immediately and afterwards to ensure business continuity, service delivery and assurance to your customers and partners.

Murage: Cellulant has since its inception succeeded in bestowing a very family-oriented culture among its staff. This is one of the main things that helped us ride out the storm. That staff were able to reach out to one another, mourn, console and commiserate with the families that were affected directly by the tragedy. This put a very human face to what was going on. Immediately after the tragedy, we adopted a company-wide counselling program that was mandatory for all staff. At a very basic level, a business is about the people first. 

We were thus very clear from the get-go that if our people were not doing well then the business would break. Our priority was thus to literary put our arms around our various teams and assure them that they were not going through this alone and that the business would be there for them, not just through the tragedy but for as long as we had to for the staff to be at a better place, not to work, but because at Cellulant, we look at people as human beings first.

We were fortunate that we have world-class Pan-African talent. We therefore brought in personnel from our other markets in Africa to staff our service desk and to pick up critical functions. We had another layer of a technical team of engineers and developers from Ghana, Zambia, and Uganda to provide cover for the Kenyan technical teams.

One of the biggest moments of retrospective pride for us post January 15th was that, in building out our technology infrastructure, we didn’t want it to be based in one location or in our office. Thus we had distributed our infrastructure to co-location sites. We also use various cloud providers. The only service that was localised within our 14 Riverside headquarters was our telephony which we were able to get back up within a few days following the incident. We did however communicate relentlessly with our customers to inform them that the occurrence had not affected any elements of our service delivery to them. 

We had good relationships with our providers such as Internet solutions who came to our aid with co-location space. Various other partners and suppliers offered assistance with whatever they could help to ensure that we got back on our feet. It was very encouraging that most of our suppliers and partners called to offer help with sitting space, co-location and other critical amenities.

Winning this is a great way to uphold the legacy of our Brave 6 whose work continues to transform millions of lives across Africa. 

Since January 15th, Cellulant has continued to stand strong and pushed the boundaries on what it means to be a people-first company. Since then, the company continues to stand with the families of the Brave Six and has opened channels for the public to do the same. In honor of the work of the brave 6 they set up a fundraising channel using their last software masterpiece- Mula (now rebranding to Tingg), with the goal of ensuring that the children left behind will be educated, the families receive healthcare and they have shelter for the foreseeable future. 


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Samsung Galaxy Note 10 picks up stable Android 10

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The Samsung Galaxy Note 10 is the latest Samsung smartphone series to get an upgrade to stable Android 10.

The devices, which have been in the company’s Android 10 beta programme since late October, will be receiving the update over the course of the next few years.

Users of the Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10+ in Germany who had enrolled in the beta are receiving the update.

Samsung had released 5 builds of the beta software for the Galaxy Note 10 series.

The Galaxy Note 10 series becomes the second smartphone lineup, after the flagship Galaxy S10 family, to receive Android 10.

Initially, it had been estimated that the Galaxy Note 10 series would get its Android 10 update in the new year with the Galaxy S10 receiving it days before the end of the year. In all accounts, the Korean giant has come out ahead perhaps signalling a change in the approach towards updates.

Still, given the dynamics involved in the update process, most users are likely to get the update in the new year.

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Samsung’s Android 10 update brings with it an updated version of its custom user experience interface, One UI 2.0. One UI 2.0 features several new features that build on what the brand started with the first generation of the software as well as all the key changes that Google brought to Android with version 10.

The update also arrives with the latest December security patch.

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Google Rolls Out Chrome 79 With Better Password Protections

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Google has rolled out Chrome version 79. The browser extension will alert users on leaked passwords.

The move is important because cyber-attacks are on the rise. The new chrome with better password protection will ensure a streamlined flow or work.

In 2018, the worldwide spending on Cybersecurity approximated to $114 billion an increase of 12.4 per cent from 2017 according to Cybersecurity Ventures market Report 2019.

However, the figures are gradually growing with businesses as the biggest targets of spending on Cybersecurity.

For instance, The largest cybersecurity budgets belong to Fortune 500 corporations, with financial institutions seemingly having the deepest pockets. In a 2018 letter to J.P. Morgan Chase & Co shareholders, The company roughly spends $600 million each year on cybersecurity up from a projected $500 million in 2016,

Companies will cut on password protection expenditures with Chrome enabled the extension.

Previously, Chrome has been warning about reused passwords once you check in on two separate browsers. The company is now rolling out away chrome can provide warnings as you log in on sites of the web.

From now on, Chrome will send notifications to users on leaked passwords and let them change to secure ones.

It will enable you to control the functionality in the sync settings in chrome and sent you warnings when your password is stolen.

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Google now uses strongly hashed and encrypted copies of passwords to match them using layers of encryption.

Once you sign into a website, Chrome will send a hashed copy of your username and password.  Google will then encrypt with a secret key only known to chrome.

Google will then turn your password into a hash. A chrome algorithm that turns it into a collection of letters or numbers.

According to Forbes, The hash numbers look like for instance, 855c3497ef6299c66733. If the same password has existed in Google’s strove of previously stolen passcodes,  it will be easier for them to note a stolen password.

Chrome 79 now allows you to download a password manager. This will help you create unique passwords for each site you visit.

Alongside password warnings, Google is improving its phishing protection with a real-time option.

Until now, the company has been using a list of phishing sites that updates every 30 minutes but still, fraudsters have been quickly switching domains or hiding from Google’s crawlers.

the new and improved real-time protection will generate warnings for 30 per cent more cases of phishing.

Another thing is Chrome’s multiple profiles support. for people who use multiple profiles in Chrome or share  PC’s with others, Chrome is now equipped with a better visual indicator of what profile is currently being used to ensure the right password and profile is used.


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OnePlus 8 Lite Leaked,The Phone Might Retail Mid Range Market Prices

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OnePlus 8 Lite has been leaked, set for release in the first phase of 2020. The phone will retail at Ksh36,000 only.

The smartphone producer first launched OnePlus One in India for Rs 21,999 as the company’s first flagship phone about six years ago.

The company is a flagship Android smartphone maker and has launched a series of affordable mid-range flagships in the market.

After failing on the OnePlus X the company has since then moved to produce premium devices.

However, as 2020 approaches. There is a number of speculations that the OnePlus is working on a mid-range, the first after OnePlus X. Name not disclosed yet but sources suggest the phone might probably be a OnePlus 8 lite.

In the lineup list, OnePlus 8 pro might as well debut in late 2020 with a possible launch by October.

As revealed by 91 mobiles, the phone has a likely flat display with a centred punch-hole cutout. Also, the device has a rectangular rear camera module that would comprise of two possible cameras and a few sensors.

The OnePlus 8 lite might have a design similar to the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite and the Galaxy S11 as well as the Galaxy A91 models.

According to OneLeaks, the phone is possibly between 6.4 or 6.5 inches approximately 159.2 by 74 by 8.6mm.

The reveals show a type C port on the bottom frame, an alert slider on the side with no presence of the headphone jack.

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Additionally, the phone might have an LED flash and a foreseeable time of flight (ToF) sensor.

Renders according to 91 Mobiles,  reveal that the OnePlus 8 Lite device has an in-display fingerprint sensor which means it also has an OLED display.

Definitely, fewer buyers are interested in such flagship devices.  OnePlus 8 Lite might be one value for your money device.

This device, at just Ksh36,000, will offer top-notch features like the high-end market sellers like Samsung and Huawei who are at least double the price if not more.

With an OLED display projected. The phone might offer a 90HZ refresh rate as the as on the One plus 7T and OnPlus 7T pro premium models which are expensive.

There’s a fairly a good number of phones with of 90Hz or 120Hz display smartphones. The 90Hz or 120Hz technologies are the refresh rates at which the image redraws on the screen.

Displays with a 90Hz refresh rate render images 90 times per second. The 120Hz refresh rate will display images at 120 times per second. If truly the OnePlus offers a 90HZ refresh rate then the will be highly sellable.

Other phones in the market with the 90HZ refresh rate that might compete with the OnePlus comprise of: the Xaimi RealMe X2 Pro and OnePlus 7T series. Other phones include Nubia Red magic 3S and Oppo Reno ACE.


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