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'Washington Business Report' - March 8, 2015

The Urgent.ly app. (WJLA photo)

WASHINGTON (WJLA) – On this week’s edition of “Washington Business Report” with ABC 7 News National Correspondent Rebecca Cooper:

One-on-one: Cybersecurity practices, mistakes

Some experts want us to stop using the term “cyber,” stating that it is too general and is obviously a part of everyone’s life. Cybersecurity remains a function with very specific needs. Two cybersecurity experts, Donald Tighe and Allen Shay, joined to discuss mistakes businesses still make in their security practices and steps all organizations can take to stay safe.

Mistakes:

• Small businesses often expect the government and larger organizations to solve their problems.

• Businesses need to be proactive in protecting their own companies, Shay says.

• Big businesses often think cyber is an industry.

Steps to take:

• Back up files on a local server—not in a cloud.

• Businesses in the private sector and the government must learn to work together.

Small business spotlight: Urgent.ly

Urgent.ly is a local startup making national moves to disrupt the roadside assistance market. For our Small Business Spotlight, Urgent.ly Co-founder and CEO Chris Spanos shared how Urgent.ly’s future looks bright, because of connected cars coming onto the market:

How it works:

• After contacting the server, Urgent.ly locates your vehicle and sends proper assistance.

• Users are given a price estimate and can track the arrival time.

• Urgent.ly automatically matches your vehicle with a proper tow truck.

• Users only pay when the service is used.

Partnerships:

• Urgent.ly went nationwide when it signed a deal with Mapquest.

• AT&T’s connected car platform, Drive, will be implementing the app to its dashboard.

Round table

Metro's top job is a thankless one: panel

The vacant General Manager position at the DC Metro will likely stay vacant a little longer now that three top candidates have pulled out of the race for the job. Jonathan Aberman and Jim Dinegar were back to discuss the week’s headlines in the roundtable including metro's help-wanted woes, drones, and what to look out for in the stock market.

General Manager of Metro:

• Metro GM and CEO Richard Sarles announced his departure from the position in September 2014.

• There was no succession plan in order for when Sarles exited.

• Due to many new members on the board, process to fill his shoes has not seen much progression - plus, the guests say, it is a very thankless job.

Drones:

• Aberman’s TandemNSI hosted an event where organizations showcase their latest drone technologies.

• In the near future, drones will likely change the ways in which business is done.

• The biggest issue? Finding jobs for workers replaced by drones.

What to watch:

• Dinegar believes this will be a year full of mergers, acquisitions, and IPOs.

• Cooper is interested to see the kind of impact the Apple Watch will have on the market.

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