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Backlinks: Your Free Link Analysis Tool

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backlinks neil patel

Please note that you may have to clear your browser cache to see the latest version of Ubersuggest.

Do you want to know how many people are linking to you? Do you want to find more link opportunities?

Well, I created a free backlink tool that will allow you to do that (and much more).

I decided to call it Backlinks.

And, as you may have guessed, I integrated it within Ubersuggest so that way you can do more within one simple tool.

Here’s how Backlinks works…

How Backlinks works

The first step is to head over to the Backlinks landing page and type in a URL or a domain.

backlinks

You’ll then want to select the type of backlink report you want to pull up.

backlinks drop down

As you can see, there are 3 main options:

  1. URL – this report will pull backlink information ONLY for that specific URL.
  2. Domain/* – this report will pull backlink information for that domain EXCLUDING subdomains.
  3. *Domain/* – this report will pull all backlink information for that domain, including any subdomains. This option will typically give you the biggest backlink count number.

Once you figure out what type of query you want to run, select that option and hit the “Search” button.

The Backlinks report

At this point, you’ll see a report that looks something like this:

backlink overview

This report will show you the domain score (the authority or a domain), the total number of backlinks, how many of them are follow versus nofollow, number of referring domains, .edu and .gov backlink count, and the estimated organic traffic a domain and URL receive.

In essence, you can get a quick overview of how you are doing versus your competition in seconds.

Link analysis

When you pull up a Backlinks report, you will also see a full list of URLs linking to a website.

backlink report

By default, it shows one link per domain to make the report more useful. That way if someone links to you 100 times, you’ll see the best link from that site.

If you want to see all 100 links coming from the same site, unclick the “one link per domain” button.

one link per domain

In general, assuming the URL or domain you just pulled up has a lot of backlinks, you’ll see thousands and thousands of links.

In each row, you’re provided with:

  1. Source title – what is the title of the page linking to URL/Domain you looked up.
  2. Target page – where the link is pointing to. If you are looking up a URL, then it will be pointing to that specific URL. If you looked up a domain, you can see where their link is pointing to on that domain.
  3. Domain score – how authoritative is the linking site? The higher the number the better.
  4. Page score – how authoritative is the linking page? The higher the number the better.
  5. Link type – is an incoming link through an image or a text link?
  6. Anchor text – does the link contain any keywords? You can easily see this through the anchor text column.
  7. First seen – when did we first find this link?
  8. Last seen – when did we last crawl and find this link?

Advanced filtering

When you are looking for specific link opportunities, especially if you are looking up a competitor’s domain, you may want to use the advanced filters to find the best link opportunities.

backlink filters

Here’s how the advanced filters work.

  • Search box – in the box, you can type in any keyword or phrase and it will pull any URLs, titles, or anchor text that contain any of those words. That way you can find what you are looking for faster.
  • Zone – if you want to only include or exclude links with certain domain extensions, such as .net, .com, .com.br, .co.uk, etc., you can do so with zone filtering.
  • Referring domain – if you want to include or exclude links coming from a specific domain, this is the filtering option you can use.
  • Anchor – if you want to find links by a specific anchor text or exclude links with a specific anchor text you can do so with this filtering option.

And if you want to slice and dice the data in more advanced ways, you can always click the “export to CSV” button and play around with the data.

Links are everywhere

As you may know in Ubersuggest you can enter in a URL. Because of this update, we have integrated link data throughout multiple reports.

As you can see in the Overview report under the “Traffic Analyzer” heading, you not only get traffic estimations, but you also get link data.

domain overview

From referring domains to .gov and .edu links to domain score.

The best part about this update is you now get detailed link information on the Top Pages report.

If you aren’t familiar with the Top Pages report, it shows the most popular pages for any domain.

top pages

You’ll notice that you can see how many visitors go to each URL and if you click on “view all” under Est. Visits, you’ll see a list of keywords that are driving traffic to that URL.

top pages keywords

And if you click “view all” under backlinks, you will see all of the URLs that are linking to that page.

top pages links

Conclusion

I hope you like Backlinks. I put a lot of time, energy, and money into building it.

You can look up as many domains and URLs as you want… both from your site or your competition’s. Best of all, there are no restrictions. 🙂

So, head over to Backlinks and start typing in domains and URLs.

What do you think of the tool? Please leave a comment letting me know your thoughts or if you find any bugs.

PS: You can also access the Backlinks report through Ubersuggest.

PPS: I would really appreciate if you told people about Backlinks and shared it. 🙂

The post Backlinks: Your Free Link Analysis Tool appeared first on Neil Patel.

Why Robots Are Actually Making Work More Human

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Many people view the incorporation of AI at work with anxiety, if not outright fear. A primary concern, exacerbated by a plethora of ”robots will eat my job” stories, is that AI will end careers by automating much, if not all, of what we do for a living.

When in reality, I would argue, AI will offload repetitive, rote tasks, freeing up time for teams to concentrate on the sorts of tasks that require uniquely human intelligence.

And today’s workforce is ready for it: According to a study we conducted with Future Workplace, 93% of employees are ready to embrace AI at work. However, HR seems to be lagging, with only 6% of HR professionals deploying AI technologies.

I recently sat down with Dan Schawbel, bestselling author and expert on the future of work, to further explore this topic and examine the interplay of human and artificial intelligence at work and in HR. Here’s what we discussed:

Automating Tasks, but Demanding New Skills

The clear benefit of AI at work is automating tasks that we don’t want to do, creating more opportunities to invest in valuable, high impact work.

Schawbel stresses that the importance of people skills in this new era cannot be underestimated, calling a need to focus on skills like interpersonal communication and the ever-important ability to “read the room.” LinkedIn’s 2019 Talent Trends survey found that an eye-popping 91% of respondents listed soft skills as “very important” to the future of recruiting and 92% said soft skills matter as much or more than hard skills that can be learned in school, like technology expertise or coding.

Complicating matters even further, soft skills are getting harder to find, perhaps due in part to the fact that gadget-obsessed Gen-Zers—while known for their tech proficiency—are not necessarily great interpersonal communicators.

As HR influencer Josh Bersin notes: “In today's world of software engineering and ever-more technology, it's soft skills that employers want.”

The fascinating part of this AI revolution is how automation is actually pushing the workforce to become less techy and more human.

Bridging Technology and Human Interaction

While AI can boost productivity, we need to tread carefully around unintended consequences. Take a look at social media and mobile for example, both were designed to bring people together but resulted in information overload and tech addiction.

Think about it—How many people today deal with friends and family primarily by text instead of sitting down at a meal to talk? Or use Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to socialize instead of getting together in real life?

The main thing, according to Schawbel, is that technologies like AI should be used as a bridge, not a barrier, to human interaction.

In the workplace, for example, a digital assistant can automate meeting planning by checking schedules, booking rooms, reserving equipment and eliminating a seemingly endless round-robin of invites and emails. In this case, an AI-fueled digital assistant actually makes face-to-face meetings easier and enhances human interaction at work.

The next step, of course, is ensuring that attendees put down their devices and actually interact with each other instead of their screens.

For more advice on how to find the right balance between technology usage and building human relationships, check out Schawbel’s latest book Back to Human.

Recruiters Already Reaping the Benefits

Contrary to popular belief, I believe using technology can actually create better human relationships, especially at work. The benefits of AI in recruiting, for example, are enormous, real and are happening now.

Instead of recruiters churning through hundreds—or thousands—of resumes, AI-fueled tools can crunch through the bios of current employees who are star performers to identify common traits that make them successful and then look for similar traits in incoming resumes.

But bringing it back to our balance of tech and human interaction, it’s important for the recruiter and hiring manager to actually talk to the top candidates that AI identifies. Consumer products giant Unilever found success in using AI to screen candidates for entry-level jobs and then refer top candidates to a human interview.

AI can also be used to identify at-risk employees on the verge of job hopping or even existing high performers who show strengths in certain areas and could fill a new opening better than any outsider could.

Calling HR to Close the Gap

Not only is AI primed and ready to make a splash in the workplace, but the workforce is eagerly awaiting. The opportunity now lies with HR to learn, understand and implement AI.

For those who think they may be ready, Schawbel and I both advise starting small. Take a look at some of the available AI recruiting tools to test out how they might benefit your business. From there, if you find success, you can move on further to things like integrating chatbots for onboarding or even using AI and machine learning for the personalization of learning. The opportunities are endless, so jump in!

https://blogs.oracle.com/why-robots-are-actually-making-work-more-human

Why You Shouldn’t Try to Rank #1 on Google

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google

Do you know what the number one email request I get is?

Come on, take a guess. What do you think it is?

Ok, its people asking me for money.

But, do you know what the second most common email request I get is?

Companies asking me to rank them number 1 on Google for a specific term.

And I have to say, it’s a big waste of time for you to focus all of your energy on ranking number 1 on Google for a specific term or even a handful of terms.

Just take a look at my site… here’s my Google traffic over the last 31 days:

search traffic

As you can see from the graph, I’m generating 2,375,455 organic visits from search engines each month.

And can you guess how many keywords I’m tracking when it comes to my rankings?

A big fat ZERO!

I’m not saying I don’t do SEO, I’m saying I don’t focus on rankings.

Can you increase your search traffic without tracking rankings?

The short answer is yes.

As you saw from the graph above, I’m getting over 2 million visits from organic search each month. If you look back a year, I was getting 970,459 visitors a month from search.

2018 search traffic

In other words, I was able to grow my organic search traffic by 144% in roughly 12 months. That’s not too shabby considering I don’t focus on any one particular keyword.

So why don’t I focus on specific keywords or track my rankings?

Number 1 doesn’t guarantee the most clicks

Ahrefs recently did a study where they showed how being number 1 doesn’t guarantee the greatest number of clicks.

ahrefs number 1

The number 1 listing gets the majority of the traffic only 49% of the time. Don’t get me wrong, I would rather be number 1 than number 2, but getting there doesn’t guarantee the most amount of traffic.

And over time it’s just going to get worse.

Just look at how SERP listing pages looked in 2014.

serp 2014

Now let’s look at how SERP listings look today.

2019 serp listing

What are the big differences that you see?

  1. Paid listings blend in – paid listings aren’t as clearly defined as they used to be. In other words, they blend in, which helps ads generate a higher percentage of the clicks.
  2. Localized listings can be ads – the first listing in the localized listing is also paid.
  3. The right side no longer has ads – most of the elements on the right side, when you click on them, drive you to perform another Google search.
  4. Less organic listings – the homepage only has 9 organic listings if you exclude the localized listings.
  5. Organic results are pushed down – not only do the paid and local listings show first, but news results are also in-between the organic results. This causes the 3rd, 4th, 5th… organic result to get fewer clicks.

The common trend is people are focusing on the paid ads more than the organic listings. And organic listings are no longer guaranteed to be as high up as they once were.

Just look at this eye tracking study of a Google SERPs result.

eye tracking

It clearly shows how the paid ads have the majority of the attention.

So, does this mean you should give up?

No, I am not trying to paint a picture of how you shouldn’t try to rank high on Google or that SEO is useless. Because although Google keeps adjusting the layout of their SERPs page, it’s still the most popular site in the world.

google similarweb

Commanding 57.34 billion visits a month means… you have no choice but to do SEO!

But you shouldn’t waste your time thinking about each and every change Google is making because it’s out of your control.

Just look at how many algorithm changes they made in the last 12 months. It’s too hard to keep up with each change or predict Google’s next move. That’s why I take a different approach to get ahead of Google’s upcoming algorithm changes.

I focus on user experience.

What should you do?

You aren’t going to be able to control your rankings for every single one of your keywords… especially if you are doing SEO the right way.

The majority of your traffic should be coming from long tail phrases. Just look at my blog, I rank for 477,000 keywords.

That’s far too many keywords to track on a regular basis.

I focus on 3 things:

  1. Create an amazing user experience – Google doesn’t want to rank sites at the top that are the “best optimized.” They want to rank the site that users love the most at the top. So, focus on providing that and, in the long run, you should rank higher.
  2. Overall organic traffic growth – keywords have trends and they change in popularity over time. Instead of focusing on a handful of keywords or even a few hundred, I just focus on increasing my overall organic traffic. As long as it keeps climbing quarter over quarter, I’m happy.
  3. Conversion rate – more traffic doesn’t guarantee more sales. I continually optimize my conversion rates so that each additional organic visitor I get has a higher chance to convert into a customer.

And I know I said I focus on 3 things, which is true… but every once in a while I focus on one more thing. It’s updating my old content.

If I had to add in a 4th, it would be updating my old content. Even though I know SEO fairly well, there is no guarantee the even my traffic keeps going up and to the right.

Just like you, my traffic drops every once in a while.

641 decline

It sucks when your traffic just drops 6.94% in a week and it is scary when that trend continues. But when it does happen, follow this and you can reverse the trend of your declining traffic.

Which strategy should you follow?

There are a few SEO strategies I use to get more traffic that still work well today. If you follow them, you should get more traffic over time:

  1. Globalization – search isn’t too competitive outside of English. That is changing fast though, so I would follow these globalization tips as soon as possible.
  2. Off-page SEO – it still impacts rankings significantly and you can’t ignore it. Here are 6 off-page strategies you should follow.
  3. Link building – here’s one of my favorite strategies for link buildingit works really well. Even if you have a new site and no one knows who you are, you will be able to build links using it.
  4. Land and expand – you already rank for terms on Google. This strategy will allow you to turn one ranking into hundreds.
  5. Brand building – Google wants to rank brands higher than non-brands. Follow this as it will help you build a brand.

There are tons of other tactics and strategies that people are using, but the 5 main ones I mentioned above still work well in today’s competitive search landscape.

Conclusion

Yes, you want to continually improve your search traffic over time, but obsessing over whether or not a keyword is ranking number 1 doesn’t mean much.

SEO has moved to a long-tail strategy. The goal isn’t to rank for one keyword, or even a hundred or a thousand… the goal is to rank for hundreds of thousands if not millions of keywords over time.

And as long as that trend is continually going up and to the right, you’re fine.

One way to see if things are going directionally right is to use Ubersuggest. When you put in your domain, you’ll see a chart that looks something like this:

keyword rankings

You want the total number of keywords to increase over time and you want the small green bar to continually go up over time as that means a higher portion of your listings are moving up in Google.

So, are you going to continue focusing on rankings?

The post Why You Shouldn’t Try to Rank #1 on Google appeared first on Neil Patel.

Oracle and Monster Partner for Small and Midsize Business

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By Sarah Lambert, Director of Oracle HCM Cloud Product Marketing

No matter the size your organization is, finding the right talent—and having the tools to attract, hire, and engage them—can be just as hard as finding new clients. For small and midsize companies, it can be even trickier due to a lack of employer brand recognition or a complete talent acquisition team or even the lack of sufficient budgets to advertise jobs. Successful companies in this space must be savvy about where they post their jobs to increase their chances of getting in front of the right candidates quickly.

Given that midsize companies employ approximately one-third of private sector workers in the United States and are the biggest generator of jobs in this business segment, it’s important to support their efforts to grow and expand whenever possible. This is why Oracle is partnering with Monster to provide deeper functionality and insights through Oracle Taleo Business Edition Cloud Service, specifically designed for companies in the small-to-midmarket space.

Much like other Oracle strategic partnerships, the deeper integration with Monster is focused on benefiting customers and candidates in multiple ways. Here are just two of them:

Easy job applications using a Monster profile: This is available now and allows job candidates to apply for positions directly from within Monster with their Monster profile, as well as to any company career website using Taleo Business Edition. The best part is this decreases the time to apply and increases the number of applicants likely to respond to a job posting. This is a win on all fronts.

Easy search: Recruiters will be able to search Monster from within Taleo Business Edition. This means recruiters won’t have to flip back and forth between Monster and TBE while they’re sourcing for high-quality candidates for those tough-to-fill roles. This is a huge improvement in support of recruiter productivity and efficiency. This new capability is scheduled to be available in late 2019.

With the addition of these capabilities, Oracle and Monster can continue to grow their partnership and integrate their respective functions for the success of their customers and job seekers. 

https://blogs.oracle.com/oracle-and-monster-partner-for-small-and-midsize-business

17 Charts That Show Where Social Media is Heading

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social shares

You already know it’s harder to get traffic from the social web unless you spend money ads.

There’s nothing new with that fact… just look at the graph above: It breaks down how the average number of social shares per blog post has been dying year over year.

But the reality is you can’t ignore platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube or any other new contender that comes out and gains traction.

These social sites command so much traffic, that we have no choice but to be on them.

Just look at the Similar Web numbers for Facebookthey get an estimated 19.2 billion visits a month.

That’s ridiculous! And it’s not just Facebook either… according to Similar Web, all of the big platforms get tons of traffic:

  • LinkedIn – 917 million visitors a month
  • Twitter – 3.62 billion visitors a month
  • YouTube – 22.77 billion visitors a month
  • Instagram – 2.86 billion visitors a month

In other words, whether you like their algorithm tweaks or not, you have no choice but to be on these platforms as they attract so many eyeballs.

So, what should you do with your organic social reach? How should you combat their algorithms so you can generate a positive ROI as their ad prices keep going up?

Well, I surveyed 183 companies that generate at least 5 million dollars in revenue a year all the way up to $1.7 billion to show you where social media is headed and what you should do to succeed in the landscape.

Let’s dive into the data…

Expect less traffic from the social web, even if you pay for it

Look at the graph below. What do you see?

social shares per post

Since 2015, the amount of shares a blog post receives from the social web has been declining. One of the large reasons for social sites to clamp down on organic reach is that that makes it so you need to spend money to get the reach that you were once used to and relied upon to generate traffic.

Now let’s look at the percentage of digital ad spend going towards social media sites.

ad spend

Over time it has increased, and you’ll notice that things really started to ramp up in 2016.

An interesting fact is that in the United States during mid-2017, Facebook had more advertisers than inventory. In other words, the demand was higher than the supply which caused CPM and CPC rates to increase.

But similar to the game of cat and mouse SEOs play with Google, marketers also play that game with social networks. In recent years, marketers have figured out how to reverse the trend of their dying organic reach.

organic social traffic

2017 was a low point, but since then marketers have figured out a way to boost organic social traffic.

It won’t last forever… but can you guess how?

Don’t expect your employees to help

Well, it’s not by asking your employees to share your content.

employees content share

Roughly 74% of the companies we surveyed asked their employees to share their content. Might as well get those extra likes and comments, right?

I know I used to do it.

employees don't share

But then I stopped because the majority of my employees didn’t want to share the content. And it’s not just my companies, other companies experienced the same thing.

In other words, the first few times you ask your team members to share, they’ll do it. After a while, they’ll ignore you.

So how are marketers boosting their organic reach?

You have to use chatbots

Here’s how much time companies are spending on each form of social media content.

time spent on content

As you can see, everyone loves posting images and text-based updates because they are easy to post.

But they don’t produce the best engagement. It’s actually live video and other forms of video.

socialcontent

Social platforms are trying to compete with television networks and they are even competing with platforms like Netflix.

So, if you want the most engagement you have to feed into their goals. If you start producing live video or even recorded video, you’ll find that you can boost your engagement. What this will do is get more of your followers engaged so when you post other forms of content they’ll be a higher probability that the content will be seen.

The other reason videos work so well is because they keep people on these social platforms versus driving people back to your site.

But of course, you want your followers to go back to your site… and you can do that through chatbots.

biggest social gains

As you can see, 41% of the companies reported that chatbots (also knowns as messenger bots for social sites) provided their biggest traffic gains.

In other words, if you want to drive people from social sites like Facebook, you’ll have to start using messenger bots like Mobile Monkey.

The chances are you aren’t using messenger bots yet, but they are super effective. Just follow this guide and it will walk you through setting them up.

Now, not every social network has messenger bots, but over time you’ll see this change.

You’ll have to start expanding globally

I’ve been blogging a lot about global expansion from an SEO perspective, but the same goes from a social media perspective as well.

social traffic english

The chart above clearly shows how people are now getting traffic from regions where English wasn’t the native language.

And as companies noticed that trend, they also started posting their social content in multiple languages.

language post in

You’ll see a trend of this continuing over the next few years in which companies will be leveraging globalization as social marketing campaigns in non-English speaking countries in most cases is more profitable.

If you want the most out of your organic social traffic and paid ads you should consider posting content in multiple languages.

Some social networks like Facebook give great targeting options where you can pick which regions you want to show your content in.

languages

For other platforms like Twitter and Instagram, this doesn’t exist yet.

When you also look at it from an advertising perspective, ads are expensive in regions like the United States, Japan, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany… but they aren’t as costly in most parts of Latin America and Asia.

Now let’s look at social media from a sales perspective.

Here’s how to maximize your social media revenue

Similar to content marketing, don’t expect social media visitors to convert right when they land on your site.

On average, a social media visitor will convert after 3 visits.

visit before customer

That means you are going to have to focus on getting people to continue to come back to your site if you want more sales.

In other words, you’ll have to play the long game.

The simplest way to do this is to remarket your social visitors. But there are other solutions as well that you aren’t currently using.

convert social customers

You can use a combination of the methods above. You’ll find that one won’t be enough and you’ll have to combine a handful of methods, including SMS.

You’re probably not using SMS marketing yet, but did you know that when I send SMS messages my response rates are 68%?!

That’s crazy high!

I’m not talking about opens, I am talking about responses!

For email, you can use tools like Hello Bar and for push notifications, you can use tools like Subscribers.

But there are multiple ways to boost your sales from social media, including focusing on specific content types.

Did you know that if you leverage chatbots (messenger bots) and post video-based content you’ll generate more sales on average than if you just posted status updates?

organic sales

I know that sounds counterintuitive as it is easier to drive people to your site using status updates than to create a video, but you have to consider that social algorithms favor video.

You can also optimize your sales by picking specific social networks

Sales is a complicated formula. There’s more to growing your revenue than just focusing on specific types of content social media sites love and optimizing your landing pages.

To get a full picture, you also have to look at the first touch and last touch sales.

First touch sales are the traffic source that people first found you from. They don’t necessarily convert right then and there, but it’s the way they first found you.

first touch sales

It’s no shocker, but Facebook is the leader when it comes to first touch sales.

Now let’s look at last touch sales, which is where a visitor comes from right before they convert. Remember, someone may have found your site from Facebook, but they may not convert right away.

last touch

Sure, Facebook is still the winner, but YouTube is a close second and, shockingly, WhatsApp is in 3rd place.

It makes sense as texting has an extremely high open and click rate. I know you aren’t using WhatsApp for your business yet because that’s what the data shows, but you should check out their business API.

social platform

Conclusion

Over the upcoming years, you can assume social algorithms are going to get tougher from both an organic and paid perspective.

Social media companies are facing heavy governmental pressure due to fake news, privacy concerns, and issues related to political campaigns.

But that doesn’t mean you can ignore the social web or stop using it. It’s not dying and it is here to stay.

customers find you

The data shows social media is on the rise. Sure, these sites aren’t growing at a rapid pace anymore but that’s due to the majority of the world already being on one of these platforms if not a few of them.

They are effective because people trust what they see on these sites and that should continually increase as they fix issues like fake news.

As long as you follow the tips above, you’ll be able to maximize your social media traffic and revenue even when the algorithms change in ways that don’t favor you.

So how are you maximizing your social media traffic?

PS: If you want to know where content marketing is heading, check this out.

The post 17 Charts That Show Where Social Media is Heading appeared first on Neil Patel.

Oracle Database 19c’s New Features

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Oracle Magazine asked Dominic Giles, a master product manager for Oracle Database at Oracle, to share a few of his top features in Oracle Database 19c.

Automatic Indexing

The Automatic Indexing feature uses machine learning algorithms to create and constantly adjust indexes to improve performance and cost savings. “For the first time ever, a database can determine for itself the optimal set of indexes for your dataset,” Giles says. That means “you can start the database without any, or with very few, indexes, and over a short period of time, the database will look at the way the data is queried and build indexes to provide efficient access plans for that dataset.”

The feature works equally well with an existing database, where Automatic Indexing can help fine-tune the collection of indexes in the database. The database can implement indexes and then continually validate them. It can also remove unnecessary indexes, Giles says. This is important, because over time indexes pile up, “often for reports or batch jobs that are no longer needed,” he says. That can be expensive, because those indexes can increase the compute and I/O resources needed for the database, adds Giles, who notes that large commercial applications running on top of Oracle Database can build up thousands of indexes over years of use.

Active Data Guard DML Redirect

This new capability in Oracle Database 19c helps you get more value from a standby database—which is a mirror copy of a production database meant for disaster recovery. “That’s an expensive piece of infrastructure for our enterprise customers,” he says. “It’s just sitting there consuming space and electricity.”

In Oracle Database 11g, Oracle launched Oracle Active Data Guard to help customers get more use from that standby database by running reports and backups against it.

In Oracle Database 19c, Oracle adds an important twist on this feature called Active Data Guard DML Redirect, which enables you to do transactions against the standby database. One reason for this, says Giles, is that “a lot of reporting applications don’t just report or flag or retrieve information from the database; they also write lightweight transactions. With Active Data Guard DML Redirect, those transactions are immediately and transparently redirected back to the primary database, and once committed on the primary, they are made available on the standby. From the user’s perspective, it’s as if they were writing to a standard Oracle Database.”

Active Data Guard DML Redirect works equally well, he says, whether the backup is running on premises or in the cloud or whether both primary and standby databases are running in the cloud. “This will give customers more flexibility to creatively use that additional asset,” says Giles.

Hybrid Partitioned Tables

Oracle knows that its customers are often caught between exploding data volumes and regulations that require them to keep data on hand for years, says Giles. Hybrid Partitioned Tables in Oracle Database 19c will help address this situation.

Hybrid Partitioned Tables enables database administrators to manage a table between partitions inside the database and partitions held on low-cost read-only datastores outside the database.

“This means you can use all of the core analytics features of Oracle Database, even when you place data in low-cost read-only storage,” says Giles.

These datastores can reside on premises or in the cloud.

“The beauty of this model is that a table running at the customer’s site could effectively be stretched to the cloud,” he says.

And read-only data outside of Oracle Database doesn’t require regular database backups but is still accessible from Oracle Database. “It’s a very attractive solution for data lifecycle management, and the customers I’ve spoken to are very excited about this technology,” says Giles.

Visit Oracle Magazine to read the article in full. 

https://blogs.oracle.com/oracle-database-19c%E2%80%99s-new-features

The Value of Threat Intelligence Feeds for Web Application Security

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By Rachel Zahr ​

Because the threat landscape is constantly evolving and more volatile than ever, businesses need a solution that can keep up with the known threats that target their web-facing applications and services. New cyberthreats are hitting the market at an alarming rate. Emerging botnets like DrainerBot and new variations of botnets like Mirai, IoTroop, and Reaper are constantly making headlines. Large corporations fall victim to massive data breaches on a weekly or even daily basis. With hacker methods continuing to grow in complexity and increasing their ability to execute at scale, businesses need to add security measures to manage the threats. Incorporating threat intelligence feeds can help temper this problem.

Threat feeds can consist of data from open source collectors, commercial threat-feed companies, and security providers’ own anonymized customer network. Because threat-feed data is cross-sectionally collected from multiple companies and markets, it provides a relatively current and comprehensive snapshot of current threats that can improve security postures. Oracle Cloud Infrastructure’s threat feeds offer customers a unique solution that is easy-to-use, has both blocking and detecting capabilities, and is full of freshly categorized threat IP data.

Easy to Use

Defining, identifying, and monitoring threats aren't easy tasks. They can take a large amount of a security team’s time, often require a level of expertise that is in high demand and short supply, and are often inefficiently managed because teams don’t give them appropriate attention or resources.

At Oracle, we make it easy by giving our customers on-demand access to a diverse catalog of managed threat data, powered by Oracle Dyn Web Application Security. Customers can use this information to investigate incidents, to gain insights that help characterize malicious behavior, to guide their configuration of web application firewall (WAF) rules, to grow access control lists (blacklists and whitelists), and, ultimately, to strengthen their security posture.

Freshly Categorized Threat Data

Oracle provides customers with a variety of threat feeds that protect web applications against known malicious actors. Feeds are divided into different threat categories, which enables customers to closely manage and visualize the threats that are targeting their online business. Oracle’s threat feeds are categorized, managed, and derived from both open source and commercial feeds, such as blocklist.de, abuse.ch, BruteForceBlocker Project, and Webroot. To maintain the highest-quality intelligence, Oracle feeds are updated in real time, on a daily basis, with some feeds receiving upward of 500,000 updates per day.

The Value of Detect Mode

Some customers aren't prepared to set feeds in block mode, but they want to better understand threat techniques and the IPs targeting their web applications. For these customers, Oracle provides the ability to use feeds in detect mode. When detect mode is enabled, all malicious requests that match a particular threat feed are denoted in a customer’s logs. The customer can then examine and evaluate the malicious threat data, and shift only selected feeds into block mode. The levels of segmentation and the ability to examine logs help customers to develop tighter security postures that are unique for their various web applications.

Many web application security solutions with threat feeds in the market provide only blocking capabilities. This protection measure isn't ideal because it can increase the rate of false positives. The Oracle Web Application Security platform is uniquely suited to help customers learn and manage malicious threats by providing detection capability, along with the ability to block. These capabilities enable customers to analyze unusually detailed logs and better understand known threats and capture previously unknown anomalous traffic.

Providing this flexibility, granularity, and robust threat intelligence data enables Oracle customers to control, visualize, and act on threats without ever having to manage or maintain the threat IP data itself.

Rachel Zahr is a product marketing manager for Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

https://blogs.oracle.com/the-value-of-threat-intelligence-feeds-for-web-application-security-v2