Kathy Gibson is at Fujitsu Day in Johannesburg – There is still a lot of fear and uncertainty associated with digital transformation.

But organisations need to bold, and chart a way forwards, says Abdul Moosa, chief technology officer of Fujitsu South Africa.

The five pillars of digital transformation are security, big data and analytics, next-generation infrastructure, hybrid cloud and data management.

“These are the pillars you need to have in place before you can adopt digital transformation,” Moosa says.


A massive 93% of organisations have reported a security breach in the last year.

“Most of these breaches actually come down to quite simple fundamentals,,” Moosa says.

The threats span from data theft and hacking to identity theft and skimming/fraud.

Passwords are still the most prevalent security method, although it is notoriously insecure. Biometrics are therefore taking off, but Moosa warns that not all biometric systems are created equal.

“When selecting a biometric system, you need consider the false acceptance rate (FAR) along with the false rejection rate comparison (FRR).”

He suggests that a system include liveliness detection, centralised enrolment and authentication, integration, certification and two-factor authentication.

Fujitsu offers its PalmSecure technology that meets all of these needs in a reliable, accurate and contactless system.

Big data and analytics

This is at the heart of any digital transformation journey, Moosa says.

“We’re not talking about historical data, but realtime data that lets organisations make decisions on the fly.”

Intelligent analysis will soon be possible, based on massive amount of data, he adds. This will be particularly useful in applications like autonomous driving and medical diagnosis or treatment.

Intelligence makes a difference, Moosa says. And it is realtime information that will drive key business decisions.

“Even today, a lot of decisions can’t be made without access to massive amounts of data.”

As artificial intelligence (AI) comes of age, bug data and anlytics becomes even more important, he says.

The big data value chain starts with a big data lake, often based on Hadoop.

Around that is the IoT layer where information is collected. This could be structured or unstructured data from a variety of sources. “It has to be collected in its native form, analysed and presented for decision-making,” Moosa says.

Vertical markets making use of these systems include finance, public sector, automotive, transportation and retail.

Next-generation infrastructure

The need to be able to rapidly respond to the changing needs of business is driving next-generation infrastructure.

Organisations have to quickly orchestrate new offering that leverage existing capabilities, using DevOps to increase speed to value.

Resources have to be able to have instant on and off without user interventions.

The way IT can deliver these requirements is through a hybrid cloud model, Moosa says.

The challenges a traditional IT infrastructure environment faces include scalability, rapid deployment, active cloud integration, always-on and resource metering.

In light of these requirements, hyperconvergence is set to grow rapidly.

Today, most organisations he moved past first-generation convergence and are in the first stage of hyperconvergence, Moosa explains. Where they need to be aiming is for a unified software-defined data centre (SDDC) platform – or next-generation hyperconverged infrastructure.

“This leads to a hybrid cloud,” Moosa says. “This allow for seamless integration and orchestration from a single pane of glass.”

Hybrid cloud

Fujitsu has partnered with Nutanix to offer its hyperconverged solutions.

Paul Ruinaard, country manager of Nutanix SA, explains that increasing levels of complexity is hurting business.

“A legacy IT infrastructure has got many points of failure,” he explains.

Nutanix helps to reduce the complexity, ensuring that deployment time is radically reduced.

“IT organisations spend 80% of their time just patching and maintaining the infrastructure. And some of it can’t be patched, so there are security implications.”

As IT plays catch-up, organisations are moving to the cloud simply to be able to run their applications quickly.

“The utility-based model lets users consumer IT without having to worry about the infrastructure issues,” Ruinaard says.

IT has to regain control of multi-cloud world. This will be driven by a few imperatives, including lower overall TCO, more agility, faster; full visibility into costs; acting as a strategic partner to the business; and meeting SLAs while maintaining control and security.

“You have to bridge these two worlds, offering the same solutions and tools. That is he challenge,” Ruinaard explains.

Nutanix is focused on what Ruinaard describes as replatforming the enterprise data centre.

“We probably spend 70% of our time simply figuring out the resourcing of the data centre,” he explains.

Nutanix puts the infrastructure into an appliance-based environment that offers integrated, scale-out compute and storage with built-in virtualisation, network, security and management.

“This has simplified a huge amount of operations in the data centre,” Ruinaard points out.

It has also grown over the last few years into a single platform for all applications and data supported by storage services, virtual workloads and cloud-native apps.

“We have realised that the platforming of the data centre can lock customers in. By putting a software layer on it, you can run various different platforms on the same architecture.

“This offers freedom of choice when it comes to the platform,” Ruinaard says “We have also abstracted the environment from the hypervisor, which gives customers more choice.”

The net result, he adds, is an enterprise cloud that gives the organisation the freedom to choose the environment that suits them best, embracing networking, hyperconvergence, virtualisation, platform and infrastructure services, app and infrastructure management, clouds and multi-cloud management – all working on any hardware platform.

The Nutanix journey starts with modernising the data centre and experimenting with hyperconvergence, Ruinaard explains.

The next step is to run the business on an enterprise cloud with a single operation system delivering the full IT stack.

Following is the move to bring cloud-native infrastructure to app developers, creating on environment for all modern applications and services.

The final step is to converge private and public cloud with unified operations for all clouds.

Data management
As skills become more and more scarce, and technology landscapes more complex, there is a need to simplify IT infrastructures.

So what is the alternative?” asks Moosa. “One way is off the shelf applications, but these are not quick or easy.”

Fujitsu has transformed itself from the mainframe environment, and has done a lot to simplify its mainframe operations. Moves in this arena include standardising on Intel processors and open source operations.

“Wrapping around this is the flexibility of porting applications from the mainframe on to an emulator that runs on an open system platform,” Moosa explains. “So you can take legacy applications and run them on modern platforms.”