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Spring Journal

Volume 29, Issue 2

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Jon Seals

Breakthrough Innovation Allows Deutsche Telekom and SK Telecom to Unify Physical and Virtual Resources, Enable Agility, Increase Operational Efficiency, and Lower the Cost to Serve New Markets


BARCELONA, SPAIN – Deutsche Telekom is creating a multi-country mobile cloud. SK Telecom of South Korea is automating new service creation in minutes versus days, and bringing network control to one place. They are doing it with the Cisco® Ultra Services Platform, which formally launches today at GSMA Mobile World Congress.


Cisco Ultra is a complete, virtualized, feature-rich, mobile services platform that helps mobile operators launch and deploy new services faster and more efficiently. Benefits include:

  • A software-defined networking (SDN) distributed network: It applies SDN to separate control and user plane functionality. User plane functionality can be distributed close to the radio access network, allowing data to shortcut to the Internet. This can help save up to 35 percent of backhaul costs.
  • Service creation and control can be centralized, allowing operators to be more agile
  • Massive scale: In its first release, the system is tested to over two terabytes per second of traffic handling capacity, and over 20 million connections.
  • Time to revenue: It simplifies and speeds the introduction of new services, from Connected Car to enterprise private mobile networks.
  • Automated deployments: It automates the deployment of services through an easy to use user interface. Deployment intervals can be reduced from months to minutes, and deployment costs can be reduced by 30 percent or more.
  • It helps reduces total cost of ownership up to 30 to 35 percent.
  • It utilizes and enhances the Cisco family of world-class virtual applications including packet core, policy, security and more.
  • It is open and extensible: Ultra can easily integrate with third-party components. A full member of the Cisco Open Network Architecture and Evolved Services Platform, Ultra can easily onboard any of the more than 100 virtual applications in the virtualized network functions portfolio, plus third-party virtual applications. 

Rapid Time-to-Market of Hybrid Cloud and SaaS Offerings
Ultra is deployable over public, private, or hybrid clouds, and may be combined with Cisco SaaS solutions like Infinite Video, Spark, and others. 


5G Capabilities Today
Ultra makes 5G capabilities like control and user plane separation (CUPS) and network slicing available today. Operators can take advantage of these features without having to wait for end-to-end 5G.


"As our customers embrace digitization, they are expecting a much more flexible and faster service introduction from their network operators," said Franz Seiser, vice president Core Network and Services, Deutsche Telekom AG. "We have proven that our distributed approach based on SDN and NFV within our Network-optimized Infrastructure Cloud gives us the flexibility and scale needed to enhance our customers' digital experience to a much higher level."


"SDN holds much promise to make things easier and faster for our consumer and enterprise customers," said Park Jin-hyo, senior vice president and head of Network Technology R&D Center at SK Telecom. "It helps our network keep up with the growing demands as customers digitize. Cisco's approach of integrating SDN into the mobile services core will enable our customers to be served better with exactly what they want, when they want it." 


"With the new Ultra services platform, our global customers will be able to do things in near real time, that previously took hours or days," said Kelly Ahuja, senior vice president, Service Provider business, products and solutions, Cisco. "Together we are able to deliver a transformational customer experience today, while preparing the industry path to 5G." 


"We are seeing early customer adoption for the Ultra Services Platform, with eight operators worldwide, including three North American operators," said Scott Yow, vice president, Ultra Services Platform, Cisco. "This unique, SDN distributed architecture will enable our customers to harness the full potential of virtualization, SDN, and cloud."


Supporting Resources

About Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in IT that helps companies seize the opportunities of tomorrow by proving that amazing things can happen when you connect the previously unconnected. For ongoing news, please go to http://newsroom.cisco.com.

Cisco and the Cisco logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Cisco and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and other countries. A listing of Cisco's trademarks can be found at www.cisco.com/go/trademarks. Third-party trademarks mentioned are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Ciscoand any other company.

Collaboration of Industry Leaders to Advance Verizon 5G Technology Forum


BARCELONA, SPAIN – Today at GSMA Mobile World Congress, Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) announced that it will begin collaborating with Ericsson and Intel to develop and trial what is expected to be the industry's first 5G (fifth generation mobile networks) router. As members of the Verizon 5G Technology Forum, Cisco, Ericsson and Intel are partnering with Verizonwithin an ecosystem to accelerate the pace of critical 5G innovations.


The companies expect the next-generation 5G router to enable business and residential customers to achieve significantly faster networking speeds, lower latency, and the ability to handle exponentially more Internet-connected devices. This advancement is intended to help accommodate the expected explosion of the Internet of Everything, and the streaming of high-definition video content.


This collaboration of industry leaders and 5G pioneers will help to enable secure, ultra-high speed wireless bandwidth. The solution will offer Gigabit-per-second speeds by combining Cisco'senterprise networking innovations with Ericsson's advanced 5G mobile networking technology and Intel's next-generation 5G silicon. Today's announcement reinforces how industry collaboration will foster innovation in 5G via end-to-end technology development and trials. It also advances the next-generation strategic partnership between Ericsson and Cisco to create the networks of the future, which was announced in November 2015. For this project, that partnership will be further enhanced by Intel's contribution of 5G modem and device technology.


According to the Cisco Visual Networking Index™ (VNI) Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast (2015 to 2020), released earlier this month, the surge in mobile users, smart devices and machine-to-machine (M2M) connections is expected to increase mobile data traffic eight-fold over the next five years. Mobile video will have the highest growth rate of any mobile application, according to the forecast. A new generation of robust, high performance wireless networks will be critical in facilitating this growth, and 5G networks will be instrumental in helping the industry develop a new economic model for offering new services for digital business transformation -- the rapid and escalating value derived from the interconnectivity of people, processes, data and things. 


"Verizon continues to accelerate innovation around 5G technology by working closely with our partners," said Ed Chan, Senior Vice President, Technology Strategy & Planning at Verizon. "We were the first to launch 4G nationwide. With 5G, we will again drive innovation across the technology landscape."


"Today's announcement represents a major step forward in mobile technology that will have a tremendous impact on businesses and consumers," said Kelly Ahuja, senior vice president of Cisco'sservice provider products and solutions. "Only technology leaders of this caliber, partnering with a mobile and 5G visionary like Verizon, are capable of laying the foundation of tomorrow's mobile network."


"Collaboration among industry leaders in mobile, computing, and networking is critical to drive innovation and make 5G a reality," said Asha Keddy, vice president and general manager of Intel'sNext Generation and Standards Group. 


Supporting Resources

About Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in IT that helps companies seize the opportunities of tomorrow by proving that amazing things can happen when you connect the previously unconnected. For ongoing news, please go to http://newsroom.cisco.com

Cisco and the Cisco logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Cisco and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and other countries. A listing of Cisco's trademarks can be found at www.cisco.com/go/trademarks. Third-party trademarks mentioned are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Ciscoand any other company.

NEW YORK – STOPit announces the launch of STOPit PRO – the only compliance reporting platform that enables companies to mitigate risk and prevent financial liabilities by empowering employees to anonymously report fraud, unethical behaviors and product-related issues.

As a 21st century solution for deterring, mitigating and investigating all forms of inappropriate conduct in the workplace, STOPit PRO provides uniquely anonymous two-way dialogue between the employee and company officials – including risk managers, general counsel and HR departments.

Employees can use the STOPit PRO mobile app to provide real-time reports and messages, including incident-related photo and video documentation. Employers can then follow up for additional information through the app, with all interactions remaining anonymous.



Friday, 19 February 2016 00:00

Cisco Next Gen Firewall Sees Threats Coming

They say to be forewarned is to be forearmed, and nowhere is that more important than in IT security. Cisco this week unveiled a Cisco Firepower Next Generation Firewall that incorporates data from threat intelligence services to better secure applications before attacks are ever launched.

Rather than simply apply access controls to an application, Dave Stuart, senior director of product marketing for network security in the Cisco Security Business Group says, Cisco Firepower firewalls provide a more comprehensive approach to IT security that includes intrusion prevention, malware protection and reputation-based URL filtering. Stuart says that Cisco is moving to cut the time taken to discover malware from what is usually 100 to 200 days to an average of 17.5 hours.

The goal is to not only reduce the total cost of providing that security, but to also take advantage of technologies such as Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE) to provide higher levels of security. Longer term, Stuart says, IT organizations should expect to see Cisco take advantage of machine algorithms and artificial intelligence to increasingly automate much of the management of IT security at the network layer.



It’s always been something of a conundrum. Plenty of midsize companies would certainly value being able to take advantage of software development resources that have emerged all over the world, but they simply lack the global footprint or resources of the Fortune 500 companies that have created the market for global outsourcing. However, it seems that conundrum may be a thing of the past.

A key change agent appears to be Accelerance, a global software development outsourcing services provider in Redwood City, Calif., that has created a global network of software development teams to work with SMBs. I recently had a fascinating conversation with Accelerance CEO Steve Mezak, and the company’s president, Andy Hilliard, and I got a first-hand account of how it all started. Mezak took me back to when he was working with a software development company in St. Petersburg, Russia:

In the early 2000s, I started looking at these other [software development] companies, and realized that some of them were good, but not all of them; and that the challenge my clients had in looking at using my firm, was that it was a very crowded market, which made it very difficult for them to decide who to choose. So I thought, let’s go out into the world and find great companies and vet them and make sure that they’re good, and then offer a variety of services to clients.



Friday, 19 February 2016 00:00

Another Confusing Mold Insurance Decision

Are losses caused by the presence of, or exposure to, mold or fungus in a building covered by liability insurance?  That question has never been easy to answer, and at the end of 2015, the Texas Court of Appeals added further complication to the already confusing structure of mold insurance law in America.

In a case titled In re: Liquidation of Legion Indemnity Company, the Director of Insurance in the State of Illinois was acting as liquidator for Legion Indemnity Company.  The liquidator asked the court to disallow a claim by 23 governmental employees who had obtained a judgment against a construction company in a negligence action related to bodily injury the employees suffered from exposure to toxic mold during the course of their construction employment.  Claimants sought to collect their judgment from the insurance company under a comprehensive general liability policy issued by Legion.  Legion had been placed in liquidation prior to the claims for judgment being entered, so claimants filed a claim against the liquidator.

In the policy at issue, the insurance did not cover losses arising from either “contamination” of the environment by a pollutant or on account of a single, continuous or intermittent or repeated exposure to any “health hazard.”  The policy defined the term “contaminant” to mean any unclean, unsafe, damaging, injurious or unhealthful condition arising out of the presence of any pollutant, whether permanent or transient, in any environment.  The policy further defined “health hazard” to mean any chemical, alkaline, radioactive material or other irritants or any pollutant or other substance, product or waste product, where the fumes or other discharges or effects therefrom, whether liquid, gas or solid or gaseous are determined to be toxic or harmful to the health of any person, plant or animal.



The Business Continuity Institute recently published a very welcome positioning statement, looking to set out its view on organizational resilience. In this article David Honour, editor of Continuity Central, looks at the statement and invites business continuity and resilience professionals to have their say.

The aim

In the preamble to the positioning statement, BCI board member Tim Janes states that its aim “is to add clarity regarding the position of business continuity in the context of organizational resilience. It also provides the BCI’s perspective on how the development of resilience concepts may impact on the practice of business continuity.” There is certainly a need for such clarification. I have attended many webinars on the subject of organizational resilience and there is little agreement about how to define it, where its boundaries are, what it includes, and where it sits in relation to business continuity, risk management and other protective disciplines.



Friday, 19 February 2016 00:00

Thinking Different: Data Centers and IoT

The Internet of Everything (IoT) has gone from a concept not many people grasped clearly, to a tangible, living and breathing phenomena on the verge of changing the way we live—and the way data centers strategize for the future.

At least, data center managers better develop new strategies for handling the IoT and all the data that could overwhelm current systems.

What does the volume of data look like: In the past five years, traffic volume has already increased five-fold; and according to a 2014 study by Cisco, annual global IP traffic will pass a zettabyte and surpass 1.6 zettabytes by 2018. Non-PC devices—expected to double the global population by that year—will generate more than half that traffic.



To be a successful managed service provider, you need to protect your customer’s critical business data. This involves a lot more than just providing a simple backup and disaster recovery solution. After all, what will you do if your client has lost all power or can’t access their office? The missing piece? Intelligent business continuity.

Here are three essentials of a top-notch business continuity plan for your customers' businesses (as well as your own). 



JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Five more home improvement stores— in St. Louis, St. Charles and Jefferson counties — are teaming up with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide local residents with free information, tips, flyers and brochures to prevent and lessen damage from disasters. 

FEMA mitigation specialists will be available over the next six days to answer questions and offer home improvement tips on making homes stronger and safer against disasters. Most of the information is geared toward do-it-yourself work and general contractors.

Advisers will be available February 18-23 at the following locations . . .

  • Lowe's at 6302 Ronald Reagan Drive, Lake St. Louis, MO 63367 (St. Charles County)
  • Home Depot at 3891 Mexico Rd, St. Charles, MO 63303 (St. Charles County)
  • Home Depot at Chesterfield Commons, 390 THF Blvd., Chesterfield, MO 63005 (St. Louis County)
  • Home Depot at 11215 St. Charles Rock Road, Bridgeton, MO 63044 (St. Louis County)
  • Lowe’s at 920 Arnold Commons Drive, Arnold, MO 63010 (Jefferson County)

During these times . . .

  • Thursday to Saturday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Sunday 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Monday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Mitigation teams will also have free reference booklets on protecting your home from flood damage. More information about strengthening property can be found at www.fema.gov/what-mitigation.


For breaking news about flood recovery, follow FEMA Region 7 on Twitter at https://twitter.com/femaregion7 and turn on mobile notifications or visit the FEMA webpages dedicated to this disaster at www.fema.gov/disaster/4250.

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

All FEMA disaster assistance will be provided without discrimination on the grounds of race, color, sex (including sexual harassment), religion, national origin, age, disability, limited English proficiency, economic status, or retaliation. If you believe your civil rights are being violated, call 800-621-3362 or 800-462-7585(TTY/TDD).

The SBA is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling 800-659-2955, emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visiting SBA’s website at www.sba.gov/disaster. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call 800-877-8339.

State/Tribal Government or Region: