(TNS) - The Wisconsin Department of Transportation reported Thursday that it may take months to fully reopen flood-damaged highways in Bayfield, Ashland and Iron counties. Damage from the flooding — caused by 8 to 10 inches of rain that fell Monday into Tuesday — is estimated at more than $10.5 million in Iron County alone.
U.S. Highway 2 between Ashland and Hurley, U.S. Highway 63 near Grand View in Bayfield County and State Highway 13 between Ashland and Mellen remained closed Thursday because of washouts.
Those three closures are forcing lengthy detours for drivers in the region — and the floodwaters washed away many other town, county and state highways.
WisDOT reported Thursday that damage assessments of state highways are still underway. On Highway 2, water levels near Odanah were still too high to fully assess the damage as of Thursday afternoon, WisDOT spokeswoman Diana Maas reported.
(TNS) - Chicago police, firefighters and paramedics conducted two active shooter drills Thursday at Wrigley Field, testing how they would react to gunmen opening fire in the stadium.
About 200 first responders were faced with this scenario: Two gunmen get through Gate J near the left-field bleachers and start shooting, resulting in a mass-casualty situation.
As the drills began, music, cheers and game announcements were interrupted by sudden gunfire and screaming using simulated ammunition and fake victims.
Deputy Fire Commissioner Mark Nielsen said the script called for the gunmen to shoot security guards and get access into the stands to shoot people on a fictitious game day. About 100 volunteers posed as fans in the stands, including off-duty police officers, Cubs employees and members of the city's Community Emergency Response Team.
You might remember a blog from our own Todd Brannon called “All about that BaaS” which outlined a jointly tested reference architecture for “Backup as a Service” with Commvault software. That engagement advanced Commvault to preferred solution partner status to deliver our joint customers a solution that is fully tested for compatibility with Cisco UCS servers and also comes with a 24/7 support model. The solution is targeted for enterprise and cloud service providers and consists of Commvault software running on the Cisco UCS C3000 series of storage optimized servers providing secondary storage. A lot can happen in a year when participating in Cisco’s Solution Partner Program and I am excited to share with you the latest developments around Data Protection and our continued partnership with Commvault.
(TNS) - Time constraints often add pressure and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) deal with death’s deadline measured on the second hand of a life’s clock.
Through practiced repetitious drillings, EMTs hone lifesaving measures into second nature responses and gain readiness for any predicament by training for the worst, morbid scenarios.
On Wednesday, EMTs engaged in active shooter training at the North Carolina National Guard Armory on Stadium Drive, practicing the proper procedures for providing medical attention and extraction to shooting victims in the midst of hostile environments, still surrounded by threats.
Gap Exists Between Catastrophe Risks and Readiness as Many Firms Lack Insurance,Planning, Direction, and Government Infrastructure for Preparedness and Recovery
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Even as middle market businesses in all parts of the world view their exposures to natural catastrophes as increasing, many fall short of managing these risks effectively. A new survey of senior executives at more than 80 leading independent insurance brokers whose commercial clients operate primarily within their own countries finds many mid-sized firms may lack adequate insurance, continuity planning, risk management and civil infrastructure support to prepare for and recover from large-scale natural disasters.
In the survey, conducted by Assurex Global of its partner firms around the world, inland flooding was considered the most significant natural catastrophe risk for middle market businesses, cited by 70 percent of the brokers; followed by hurricanes, cyclones and windstorm (50 percent), and earthquakes and tsunami (38 percent). Understandably, responses varied somewhat by region, with hurricanes rated the top risk in the U.S. and Canada, earthquakes/tsunami in Latin America and the Caribbean, and inland flooding in the Asia/Pacific and across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
“Although the types of natural catastrophe risks facing businesses vary somewhat in different areas of the world, there’s a common thread in terms of what must be in place for middle market businesses to manage them effectively,” said Jim Hackbarth, CEO, Assurex Global. “Certainly, having sufficient catastrophe insurance, effective business continuity management and a civil infrastructure that supports preparedness, response and recovery are all keys to managing these significant exposures. Further, senior leadership’s support of the company’s risk management measures is universally paramount to their implementation as well as to the company’s ultimate success and survival.”
Natural disaster risks on the rise. Worldwide, more than half the brokers indicated their clients believe their exposure to natural catastrophe risks has increased in the past five years, including 78 percent of those in Latin America and the Caribbean and 67 percent of those located in the Asia/Pacific.
Many businesses unprepared. In the face of increased risks, nearly one-fourth of the brokers surveyed worldwide estimated that fewer than 20 percent of middle market businesses in their regions now feel they are adequately prepared and insured for natural catastrophes. These estimates varied sharply by region, with 44 percent of brokers in Latin America/Caribbean citing the same low level of preparedness; 33 percent in the Asia/Pacific; 28 percent in EMEA, and 11 percent of U.S. and Canadian brokers.
Insurance, business continuity planning key elements of catastrophe risk management. When asked to list steps taken by clients that feel adequately prepared for natural disasters, 90 percent of the brokers worldwide cited client purchases of catastrophic property insurance; 68 percent pointed to the establishment of business continuity plans, and 40 percent indicated their clients retrofitted their facilities to withstand a disaster. In addition, 30 percent indicated these clients had worked to strengthen supply chains and 27 percent noted client efforts to increase worker response training.
On the other hand, when brokers were asked to list reasons clients might offer for not being adequately prepared for natural disasters, lack of effective business continuity planning was the biggest factor, cited by 60 percent of the brokers. Meanwhile, 39 percent mentioned lack of affordable insurance coverage for catastrophe risks, and 36 percent, lack of support from leadership for measures to manage catastrophe risks.
Lack of civil infrastructure and leadership issues undermine readiness. Although one-third of the brokers worldwide indicated their clients would tie inadequate readiness to the lack of available government/civil infrastructure to facilitate preparedness, response, recovery and protection of affected plant and equipment, the issue is especially pronounced for businesses in the Asia/Pacific, where it was cited by 67 percent of brokers. By contrast only 13 percent of brokers in the U.S. and Canada expressed the same concerns. In addition, issues related to lack of leadership support also appear acute in the Asia/Pacific region, cited by 60 percent of the brokers.
Among the most significant factors flagged by brokers around the world in determining whether a client is adequately prepared for a natural catastrophe, 71 percent cited internal support from senior leadership; an equal percentage identified company size and resources, believing clients view these factors as correlated with better protection and preparedness. In addition, 45 percent of brokers cited the presence of a corporate risk manager or risk management function, and 42 percent, the availability of a civil infrastructure (including emergency responders, evacuation routes, shelters, and related resources) to help facilitate preparedness and recovery.
According to the brokers surveyed, middle market clients would cite several elements of disaster risk management as needing improvement, with the responses varying markedly by region. For instance, although 25 percent of brokers worldwide cited the availability of adequate and affordable property catastrophe insurance, 56 percent of those in Latin America/Caribbean identified that issue, ranking it the region’s top factor for improvement. And while 25 percent of brokers around the world cited improvements in government infrastructure to facilitate preparedness and recovery, these needs were cited by nearly half those in the Asia/Pacific and 38 percent in EMEA, making it the biggest element to target for improvement in those two regions. The survey was conducted in June and July 2016.
About Assurex Global
Founded in 1954, Assurex Global is an exclusive partnership of the most prominent independent agents and brokers in the world. With $28 billion in annual premium volume and more than 600 partner offices, Assurex Global is the world’s largest privately held commercial insurance, risk management and employee benefits brokerage group. An international insurance powerhouse, the partnership combines the local expertise and global reach of international brokers on six continents.
FREMONT, Calif. – Attivo Networks®, the award-winning leader in deception for cyber security threat detection, announced today an integration combining the Attivo Networks Deception Platform with the Palo Alto Networks® Next-Generation Firewall. The integration brings together prevention, detection, and incident response capabilities into a solution that can automatically block infected nodes from gaining Internet access and exfiltrating valuable company data.
The Attivo Networks Deception Platform is designed to detect cyber attackers regardless of whether it is a targeted attack, involves stolen credentials, man-in-the-middle attacks, ransomware, or originates from an insider threat. Not reliant on signatures or known attack patterns, the Attivo solution uses deception technology to detect threats, like zero-day attacks, that are conducting reconnaissance or are moving laterally to escalate their attack inside the network. The Attivo BOTsink® deception decoys are set up to look identical to production assets by using real operating systems and services and can be customized with a customer's production golden image. Attivo end-point deception lures are also planted to entice and misdirect the attacker to Attivo deception servers. By engaging with decoys and not with production devices, attackers are deceived into revealing themselves and can be quarantined and studied for detailed attack analysis.
The Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewall identifies and controls applications flowing across physical and cloud-based networks, inspecting the content for known and unknown malware. As the cornerstone of Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Security Platform, the next-generation firewall provides the visibility and enforcement needed to safely enable applications and deliver automated prevention against cyber-attacks.
The integration of Attivo BOTsink deception decoys and the Palo Alto Networks next-generation firewall provides customers with attack detection, analysis inside the network, and automated blocking. Intelligence is fed from BOTsink into the next-generation firewall to automatically block infected nodes and prevent cyber breaches. As BOTsink deception decoys identify infected nodes, their IP addresses are sent to the next-generation firewall for policy enforcement via API, effectively quarantining the device, stopping any communication with the Command and Control (CNC) and preventing any data exfiltration.
"Based on strong customer demand for a comprehensive defense, we have integrated the Attivo Deception Platform and the Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewall to provide the best time-to-detection, and the best time-to-remediation for our joint customers," said Tushar Kothari, CEO of Attivo Networks. "Customers using the integration can now benefit from the Palo Alto Networks prevention-first mindset and choose to automatically block alerts of high severity, which in many cases will mean the difference of a small incident vs large scale catastrophe."
About Attivo Networks
Attivo Networks® is the leader in dynamic deception technology for the real-time detection, analysis and forensics of cyber-attacks. The Attivo Deception Platform provides inside-the-network threat detection for user networks, data centers, clouds, and ICS-SCADA environments. Not reliant on known signatures or attack patterns, Attivo uses high-interaction deception techniques based on Attivo BOTsink® engagement servers to lure attackers into revealing themselves. Combined with the Attivo End-Point Deception Suite, advanced luring technology is deployed to detect the use of stolen credentials, ransomware, and targeted attacks. Comprehensive attack analysis and forensics provide actionable alerts and can be set to automatically block and quarantine attacks for accelerated incident response. For more information visit www.attivonetworks.com
Palo Alto Networks and the Palo Alto Networks logo are trademarks of Palo Alto Networks, Inc. in the United States and in jurisdictions throughout the world. All other trademarks, trade names or service marks used or mentioned herein belong to their respective owners.
Study also discusses the development trends of connected car solutions
AUSTIN, Texas – In the U.S. the automobile is central to many consumers' lives, with a large group spending more than an hour each day in their car. These car-centric consumers, who are also tied to their smartphones, are driving the connected car market in the U.S. and have created an opportunity for automobile OEMs, technology OEMs, and mobile operators to provide valuable services through the users' vehicles. Furthermore, auto manufacturers view the connected car market as an opportunity to use mobile communications to provide safety features, such as emergency services, and remote diagnosis and management of their vehicles.
iGR, a market research consultancy focused on the wireless and mobile industry, has recently released a new market study that overviews the current state of the connected car market, and has found that this relatively new market has matured significantly in the last two to three years, as many providers have fine tuned and improved their second or third generation of solutions and have decided on a strategy to provide connected car solutions. However, challenges still exist for the many players in the ecosystem.
"The connected car market, as part of the larger IoT market, will experience growth over the next five years," said Iain Gillott, president and founder of iGR. "Some connected car solutions, such as LTE Wi-Fi hotspots, will become more readily available throughout the forecast period and prompt an increased number of mobile connections and increased data usage."
iGR's new market study, U.S. Connected Car Market Forecast, 2015 - 2020: Increasing Mobile Connectivity and Data Usage, examines connected car services available in the market today and those that are proposed for the future, as it also discusses the drivers and challenges of implementation. The market study also highlights consumers' use of mobile services in their vehicles, as defined by a survey of over one thousand U.S. mobile consumers that iGR fielded in May 2016. Finally, this market study provides a five-year forecast of the number of connected cars in the U.S. (according to multiple definitions) and the associated mobile data usage.
The following key questions are addressed in the new study:
- What different types of connected car solutions are available and how are these solutions developing?
- What are some of the drivers and challenges of the connected car market?
- Which connected car services are being offered by major automakers and how do these services compare to those offered in 2013?
- Which alliances are shaping the connected car market?
- Which mobile services do U.S. mobile consumers surveyed by iGR generally use in their cars?
- What is the five-year forecast for the number of cars in the U.S. that are equipped with a direct mobile connection?
- How many of these connected cars have an active mobile connection (usually with a subscription), both now and five years from now?
- How many cars in the U.S. use a Bluetooth-enabled smartphone to provide connectivity?
- What is the five-year forecast for the mobile data usage of the average connected car, as well as the total U.S. connected car market?
- Which companies provide products or services for the connected car market?
The information in this market study will be valuable for:
- Developers of mobile apps
- Mobile device OEMs
- Mobile service providers
- Car and vehicle manufacturers
- Financial and investment analysts
iGR is a market strategy consultancy focused on the wireless and mobile communications industry. Founded by Iain Gillott, one of the wireless industry's leading analysts, in late 2000 as iGillottResearch, iGR is now in its sixteenth year of operation. iGR continuously researches emerging and existent technologies, technology industries, and consumer markets. We use our detailed research to offer a range of services to help companies improve their position in the marketplace, clearly define their future direction, and ultimately improve their bottom line.
iGR researches a range of wireless and mobile products and technologies, including: smartphones; tablets; mobile wearable devices; connected cars; mobile applications; bandwidth demand and use; small cell and het-net architectures; mobile EPC and RAN virtualization; DAS; LTE; VoLTE; IMS; NFC; GSM/GPRS/UMTS/HSPA; CDMA 1x/EV-DO; iDEN; SIP; macro-, pico- and femtocells; mobile backhaul; WiFi and WiFi offload; and SIM and UICC.
A more complete profile of the company can be found at www.igr-inc.com.
IT Automation and Security Enable Faster Service Delivery to Accelerate Decision Making and Innovation, Making IT a Strategic Business Partner
PALO ALTO, Calif. – VMware, Inc. (NYSE: VMW), a global leader in cloud infrastructure and business mobility, today announced Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) will deploy VMware NSX® network virtualization and VMware vRealize® Suite to deliver IT as a Service through a new multi-site private cloud. Through its cloud initiative, and with the help of VMware technologies, KNPC will accelerate service delivery, improve IT efficiency and deliver a better customer experience.
KNPC is one of the biggest oil and gas companies in the Gulf region, and is considered an agile, forward-looking and innovative player in the Gulf oil sector. The company has two main refineries, and is building one of the biggest refineries in the world. KNPC partnered with VMware to move from server virtualization to the private cloud to deliver IT as a Service to the company's growing base of users. This cloud transformation is occurring in parallel with the organization's adoption of DevOps methodologies. Ultimately the long term strategy is to deliver a community cloud offering Infrastructure as a Service, Platform as a Service and Database as a Service to developers both at the company and its sister companies.
"Our adoption of a VMware-based software-defined data centre will enable our cloud transformation, and help IT be a strategic partner by operating at the speed at which our business is moving," said Abdulaziz A. Al-Duaij, Manager Information Technology Department in KNPC. "The units throughout our refineries depend on IT services for informed decision making. Our VMware-based private cloud lets us provision IT services faster, and enables us to put applications and Big Data on top of our cloud services so senior management has access to actionable business intelligence."
KNPC has deployed VMware vRealize Suite for cloud management and operations. With vRealize Operations™, KNPC IT gains better visibility into the IT infrastructure. This enables the company to better predict capacity requirements, and enables faster time to resolution through proactive monitoring. The IT automation capabilities of vRealize Automation help eliminate manual tasks, which makes IT more efficient and also minimizes security risk.
KNPC realized quickly that the company could not fully achieve the benefits of a multi-site private cloud without virtualizing the network. Without VMware NSX network virtualization, the network would remain a bottleneck to servicing the business by limiting the ability to roll out new or updated services with full security in a timely manner. KNPC will use NSX for both automation, security and application continuity. With NSX micro-segmentation, IT will be able to apply granular controls to application security and build a highly resilient and natively secure SDDC. NSX will enable KNPC to live migrate VMs or entire data centres from one location to another with little to no application downtime. Finally, NSX will enable KNPC to pool compute resources from any of their existing three physical data centres which will operate as a single logical cloud.
KNPC believes the payoffs from its VMware-based private cloud will be very tangible. Service delivery will be 60-70 percent faster, which will help mitigate shadow IT. High levels of automation, better visibility and the ability to implement a hardware vendor-agnostic infrastructure will drive down costs. KNPC IT expects to achieve resource utilization rates that are 3x better, and every day management activities known as "keep the lights on" costs are expected to go down by as much as 60 percent. These budget savings can be invested in new innovations. Finally, KNPC expects the VMware-based private cloud will help them improve overall IT's overall customer satisfaction rating.
- Learn more about vRealize Suite
- Learn more about VMware NSX
- Follow the VMware Network Virtualization and Cloud Management blogs
- Connect with VMware on Twitter and Facebook
VMware is a global leader in cloud infrastructure and business mobility. Built on VMware's industry-leading virtualization technology, our solutions deliver a brave new model of IT that is fluid, instant and more secure. Customers can innovate faster by rapidly developing, automatically delivering and more safely consuming any application. With 2015 revenues of $6.6 billion, VMware has more than 500,000 customers and 75,000 partners. The company is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout the world and can be found online at www.vmware.com.
VMware, NSX, vRealize, and vRealize Operations are registered trademarks or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions. The use of the word "partner" or "partnership" does not imply a legal partnership relationship between VMware and any other company.
Partnership marks the first integrated SD-WAN solution to support data center and branch office networking and unified communications
SANTA CLARA, Calif. – FatPipe® Networks and Avaya today announced a strategic integration that combines data center Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Software Defined WAN (SD-WAN) into a single integrated solution for networking and unified communications. This marks the first integrated SDN and SD-WAN solution of its kind.
As Avaya’s only SD-WAN partner, FatPipe has integrated its SD-WAN hybrid networking products with the fabric-based Avaya SDN FxTM architecture featuring Avaya Fabric Connect, which already supports data centers and branch offices worldwide. Together, FatPipe’s SD-WAN technology and Avaya SDN Fx help drive simplicity and agility across the entire network to ensure high-quality, real-time unified communications, providing a single source for a converged solution.
“As organizations adapt to customer and user expectations through digital transformation, hybrid cloud has become the preferred deployment model. Avaya’s SDN Fx enables geo-dispersed sites to inter-connect, but it needs to inter-operate with SD-WAN solutions to realize maximum efficiencies. FatPipe and Avaya are delivering the first fabric-enabled SD-WAN solution in the industry,” said Jean Turgeon, vice president and chief technologist at Avaya. “Automatically detecting and re-routing a degrading WAN connection provides seamless failover of VoIP, video and data sessions, ensuring the reliable quality communications and uptime our customers require.”
According to Gartner, by 2019 more than 30 percent of the Ethernet switching networks installed in enterprise data centers will be modernized with Ethernet fabric architectures, up from less than 10 percent today (Gartner, Magic Quadrant for Data Center Networking, May 2016). At the same time, 30 percent of enterprises will use SD-WAN products in all their branches, up from less than 1 percent today (Gartner, Market Guide for Software-Defined WAN, December 2015). Gartner recommends an integrated network fabric that not only delivers network services across physical and virtual networking, but also provides a unified management platform, and SD-WAN should be implemented as part of a comprehensive WAN architecture.
"Our clients rely on their Avaya communication solutions for anytime, anywhere communications, but cloud-based deployment models and the growth of businesses across dispersed branches are bringing new challenges,” said Strategic Products and Services’ Systems Integrator Manager Steve Romanelli. “After in-depth review of available technologies to
maximize availability for these real-time solutions, we now confidently recommend FatPipe Networks MPVPN and IPVPN solutions, together with the Avaya SDN Fx architecture, for an SD-WAN solution that optimizes performance.”
As one of the leading vendors for WAN link load balancing and WAN path control with thousands of customers across 6 continents and intellectual property defining SD-WANs, FatPipe’s SD-WAN solutions include key features that transcend WAN failures to maintain business continuity, including zero-touch branch deployment, hybrid WAN connectivity, tuned application performance, easy integration, granular WAN visibility, multi-path security, secure full mesh VPN connectivity and flexible centralized policy deployments.
The Avaya SDN Fx architecture featuring Fabric Connect is based on OpenStack and OpenDaylight programming tools that invisibly and securely extend network-wide with a fully enabled edge for users and their applications. This simplified, agile network virtualization solution supports integrated Layer 2, Layer 3, IP routing and IP multicast services with sub-second recoveries for unified communication and customer experience management, while reducing operating costs and time to market.
“As the first fully integrated unified communications and networking infrastructure, Avaya SDN Fx combined with FatPipe’s SD-WAN solutions help drive improved operating efficiencies that simplify IT operations and result in real cost savings,” said FatPipe’s President and CTO Sanch Datta. “FatPipe is always striving to push technology to greater heights, and this integration with Avaya represents a major milestone for the networking and unified communications industries. We look forward to our continued collaboration with Avaya.”
Avaya is a leading provider of solutions that enable customer and team engagement across multiple channels and devices for better customer experience, increased productivity and enhanced financial performance. Its world-class contact center and unified communications technologies and services are available in a wide variety of flexible on-premises and cloud deployment options that seamlessly integrate with non-Avaya applications. The Avaya Engagement Environment enables third parties to create and customize business applications for competitive advantage. The Avaya fabric-based networking solutions help simplify and accelerate the deployment of business critical applications and services. For more information please visitwww.avaya.com.
About FatPipe Networks
FatPipe® Networks invented the concept of software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) and hybrid WANs that eliminate the need for hardware and software, or cooperation from ISPs and allows companies to control WAN traffic. FatPipe currently has 11 U.S. patents and more than 180 technology claims related to multipath, software-defined networking. FatPipe technology provides the world's best intra-corporate wide area network solutions that transcend Internet and other network failures to maintain business continuity and high transmission security. FatPipe, with several thousand customers, has offices in the United States, and around the world, with more than 700 resellers worldwide including almost all national resellers in the US. Visit www.FatPipe.com.
Avaya and FatPipe are registered trademarks of Avaya and FatPipe, Inc. Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their registered owners.