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Volume 28, Issue 2

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Jon Seals

Monday, 13 April 2015 00:00

Active Wildfire Season Likely

Nearly 37 percent of the United States and more than 98 percent of the state of California is in some form of drought, according to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor.

Its weekly update shows that more than 44 percent of California is now in a state of exceptional drought, with little relief in sight.

...

http://www.iii.org/insuranceindustryblog/?p=4022

Monday, 13 April 2015 00:00

5 Laws of IT Security

There are five laws of IT security.

1. There is no such thing as perfect security: Systems designed by humans are vulnerable to humans. Bugs exist. Mistakes are made. The things that make your computers useful--that is, communication, calculation and code execution--also make them exploitable. Information security is the management of risk. A good infosec design starts with a risk profile, and then matches solutions to the likely threat.

...

http://mspmentor.net/blog/5-laws-it-security

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Norway, Switzerland, Netherlands and Ireland are considered the countries most resilient to supply chain disruption according to the 2015 FM Global Resilience Index. Australia has dropped out of the top 10 this year, moving from 4th place in 2014 to 14th place this year, one place behind New Zealand. Venezuela, meanwhile, is rooted to the foot of the index, but Guyana and Bolivia both rose out of the bottom 10, owing to significant improvements in commitment to natural hazard risk management in the region.

The FM Global Resilience Index highlights the risks that come with operating in various countries and quantifies all the vulnerabilities these countries have in a definitive ranking of supply chain resilience around the world.

Supply chain disruption is a major cause for concern among business continuity professionals with the Business Continuity Institute’s latest Horizon Scan report revealing that it is the fifth in the list of potential threats to organizations compared to 16th place the year before. This is no surprise as three quarters (76%) of respondents to the BCI’s latest Supply Chain Resilience survey claimed they had experienced at least one supply chain disruption during the previous year.

Ireland keeps its place in the top 10, moving up one place to 4th in the rankings, reflecting both its low exposure to natural hazards and the fruits of its austerity and fiscal regimes. For the third year running, the United Kingdom has held on to its 20th place. Its ranking reflects its resistance to oil shocks as its consumption of oil relative to GDP is comparatively low. The UK scores well on other key drivers such as perceptions of its control of corruption and the quality of local suppliers, but there is scope for improvement in risk quality, particularly as it relates to fire risk management. In addition, the risk of terrorism continues to threaten supply chain security.

The United States and China are each segmented into three separate regions because the geographic spread of these countries produces significantly disparate exposures to natural hazards. Region 3 of the US, which includes most of the central part of the country, ranks 10th. Region 1, encompassing much of the East Coast, ranks 16th and Region 2, primarily the West Coast, ranks 21st. China’s three regions rank 63rd (Region 3), 64th (Region 1), and 69th (Region 2). Beyond natural disaster risk, China's other challenges range from poor accountability and transparency, high levels of perceived corruption and growing security concerns to problems in its financial sector, especially with regard to the fragile position of its banks.

“Business leaders who don’t evaluate countries and supply chain resilience can suffer long-term consequences,” said Bret Ahnell, executive vice president, operations, FM Global. “If your supply chain fails, it can be difficult or impossible to get your market share, revenue and reputation back. The FM Global Resilience Index is designed to help business leaders stay in business by making informed decisions about where to place and maintain global supplier facilities.”

The top 10 countries, those most resilient to supply chain disruption, according to the report were:

1. Norway
2. Switzerland
3. Netherlands
4. Ireland
5. Luxembourg
6. Germany
7. Qatar
8. Canada
9. Finland
10. United States (central region)

The bottom 10 countries, those considered least resilient to supply chain disruption, were:

121. Tajikistan
122. Egypt
123. Pakistan
124. Jamaica
125. Honduras
126. Dominican Republic
127. Nicaragua
128. Mauritania
129. Kyrgyz Republic
130. Venezuela

The Index is compiled annually for FM Global by analytics and advisory firm Oxford Metrica. The Index is generated by combining three core factors of business resilience to supply chain disruption: economics, risk quality and qualities of the supply chain itself. The drivers of these factors include GDP per capita, political risk, vulnerability to oil shortages and price shocks, exposure to natural hazards, quality of natural hazard risk management, fire risk, control of corruption and the quality of infrastructure and local suppliers.

http://www.thebci.org/index.php/about/news-room#/news/definitive-ranking-of-supply-chain-resilience-around-the-world-112339

In 2014, the Federal Bureau of Investigation sent a private notice to healthcare organizations regarding the industry’s preparedness to fight cyber intrusions. The notice stated healthcare organizations are “not as resilient to cyber intrusions compared to the financial and retail sectors, therefore the possibility of increased cyber intrusions is likely.”[1] Until recently, privacy and information security has not been a significant focus of the healthcare industry. That is changing. In 2013, it was estimated that North American healthcare organizations were expected to spend $34.5 billion in 2014 on information technology.[2] While there are numerous privacy and security risks in the healthcare space, two key areas for 2015 are enforcement by the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) through audits and investigations and the increase of bring-your-own-device workplaces.

...

http://www.corporatecomplianceinsights.com/healthcare-privacy-and-information-security-risk-forecast-for-2015/

New Go-to-Market Partnership Broadens Reach of Dot Hill Technology and Extends Quantum's Leadership in Data Lifecycle Management

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Quantum Corp. (NYSE: QTM) and Dot Hill Systems Corp.(Nasdaq: HILL) today announced a new, global go-to-market partnership whereby Quantum will integrate Dot Hill's full line of enterprise-class disk storage systems into its tiered storage offerings. By adding all of Dot Hill's storage arrays to its scale-out storage and data protection portfolio, Quantum will further expand its range of solutions designed for managing data across its entire lifecycle in demanding environments. At the same time, Dot Hill will extend its market footprint by leveraging Quantum's channel, sales and marketing resources, and global service and support. Today's announcement builds on the companies' technology relationship and reflects a similar focus on providing best-in-class performance and value with solutions that incorporate multiple storage technologies.

Quantum Logo

Tiered Storage for Today's Data-driven Demands

With the amount of data and its strategic value continuing to increase, customers face more challenges in managing, retaining and protecting their data while making it quickly accessible whenever and wherever it's needed — all at the lowest possible cost. Both Quantum and Dot Hill have been at the forefront in addressing these challenges, delivering high-performance solutions with different tiers of storage to achieve the optimal balance of accessibility and cost.

Dot Hill's Enterprise-class Storage

Dot Hill has a broad portfolio of enterprise-class, primary block and SAN disk storage arrays with proven 99.999 percent availability. All of these will now be available through Quantum, including:

  • Hybrid storage arrays with RealStor™ software that autonomically measures data usage, identifies "hot" spots as they occur and continuously moves data to the most appropriate tier — SSD, SAS or Nearline SAS — in real time, even as that data changes minute by minute. 
  • Ultra-dense arrays (Ultra48™ and Ultra56™ AssuredSAN®) that deliver maximum performance in a small footprint. 
  • New AssuredSAN 6000 Series arrays with RealStream™ technology optimized for key vertical markets, including telecommunications infrastructure, network management, video surveillance, service providers and high performance computing (HPC) as well as other Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

Even Greater Value for Quantum Customers

Dot Hill's disk products fit well within Quantum's portfolio of both scale-out storage and data protection offerings:

  • Scale-out Storage: Quantum already uses Dot Hill storage in the form of Quantum's StorNext® QXS disk systems, including the new StorNext QXS-5600 which has been extremely well-received by customers. As Quantum continues to build on its leadership in providing high-performance workflow and tiered storage for vertical markets and use cases — including media and entertainment, video surveillance, corporate video and HPC — it will leverage Dot Hill's technology in meeting specialized storage requirements. 
  • Data Protection: Quantum has a large install base of customers that have long relied on the company to address their data protection needs and help them adapt to ever-changing storage demands. By incorporating Dot Hill disk into its product line, Quantum will now be able to offer these customers an even broader range of solutions for storing and protecting data, including tiering data within and across primary storage, backup and archive.

Broader Market Reach for Dot Hill Technology

Quantum-branded Dot Hill storage is available now from Quantum's worldwide network of resellers. The company supports these partners through its award-winning Quantum Alliance program, which offers sales tools, marketing resources, training, technical expertise and other services to help them succeed and grow. By leveraging its channel, global sales and marketing organization and service team — which provides support in more than 100 countries — Quantum will extend the reach of Dot Hill's technology.

Supporting Quotes

Dana Kammersgard, President and CEO, Dot Hill Systems

"Dot Hill and Quantum have enjoyed a long-standing relationship as industry partners, and we see this new go-to-market collaboration as a win-win arrangement for both companies. Quantum has the global scale and scope to support a worldwide customer base, and will greatly accelerate and broaden the distribution of Dot Hill storage technology."

Jon Gacek, President and CEO, Quantum

"Dot Hill has a strong set of products that address key challenges in dealing with highly demanding data workloads and make a great addition to Quantum's tiered storage portfolio. Today's announcement reflects our continued focus on delivering specialized solutions that enable customers to maximize the value of their data by managing and protecting it throughout its lifecycle."

About Quantum

Quantum is a leading expert in scale-out storage, archive and data protection, providing solutions for capturing, sharing and preserving digital assets over the entire data lifecycle. From small businesses to major enterprises, more than 100,000 customers have trusted Quantum to address their most demanding data workflow challenges. With Quantum, customers can Be Certain™ they have the end-to-end storage foundation to maximize the value of their data by making it accessible whenever and wherever needed, retaining it indefinitely and reducing total cost and complexity. See how at www.quantum.com/customerstories.

About Dot Hill

Leveraging its proprietary Assured family of storage solutions, Dot Hill solves many of today's most challenging storage problems - helping IT to improve performance, increase availability, simplify operations, and reduce costs. Dot Hill's solutions combine breakthrough software with the industry's most flexible and extensive hardware platform and automated management to deliver best-in-class solutions. Headquartered in Longmont, Colo., Dot Hill has offices and/or representatives in China, Germany, India , Japan, Singapore, the United Kingdom, and the United States. For more information, visit us at www.dothill.com.

HILL-G

Quantum, the Quantum logo, Be Certain and StorNext are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Quantum Corporation and its affiliates in the United States and/or other countries. Dot Hill, the Dot Hill logo, RealStor, Ultra48, Ultra56, AssuredSAN and RealStream are trademarks of Dot Hill. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

"Safe Harbor" Statement: This press release contains "forward-looking" statements. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. Specifically, but without limitation, statements relating to benefits from the Quantum Dot Hill relationship, including customer and reseller benefits and Quantum's and Dot Hill's future market positions and revenues, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Safe Harbor. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to Quantum and Dot Hill on the date hereof. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause Quantum's or Dot Hill's actual results to differ materially from those implied by the forward-looking statements. More detailed information about these risk factors are set forth in Quantum's and Dot Hill'speriodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, the most recent filings by Quantum and Dot Hill, especially those risks and uncertainties listed in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in Quantum's most recently filed Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q and Annual Report on Form 10-K under the headings "Our operating results depend on a limited number of products and on new product introductions, which may not be successful, in which case our business, financial condition and operating results may be materially and adversely affected." Quantum and Dot Hill expressly disclaim any obligation to update or alter their forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable law. Neither Dot Hill nor Quantum is responsible for statements made by third parties. Further, Dot Hill is not responsible for Quantum's statements, and Quantum is not responsible for Dot Hill's statements.

The Indian refining and marketing giant subsidiary, Essar Oil (UK) Limited, has selected Aspect's energy trading and risk management solution, AspectCTRM to help optimize its European refinery-related trading, supply and risk management activities.

 

Essar is a multinational corporation with annual revenues of USD$35 billion and investments in steel, energy, infrastructure and services. With operations in more than 29 countries, it employs over 60,000 people.

 

One factor which made Essar Oil UK select Aspect was its modern technology stack which allows for painless integrations. AspectCTRM is being integrated with several in-house solutions including Essar UK's refinery and planning system, SAP ERP and its curve management provisioning tools.

 

Vice President of EMEA Sales, Yags Savania commented, "Aspect's relationship with Essar goes back almost 10 years, where our market data solution AspectDSC was used by Essar's supply and trading group in Mumbai. It's nice to see the relationship mature to where AspectCTRM will now become an integral part of its trading business."

About Aspect Enterprise Solutions
Aspect is a leading global provider of multi-commodity trade, risk and operations management solutions delivered Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) in the cloud. With almost 500 customers in 90 countries, it's one of the fastest growing providers with rapid deployment, affordable subscriptions, and immediate ROI for all size companies. Solutions include AspectCTRM®, a full-featured commodity trading and risk management enterprise suite for front, middle and back office. It's available in three editions: Lite, Standard and Enterprise, expanding in functionality according to the needs and budgets of clients. Aspect is the only ETRM/CTRM solutions provider with market data and analytics tools delivered with its trade and risk functions on the same platform. This provides users with a seamless packaged solution beginning with pre-trade pricing analysis and market assessments via AspectDSC. Aspect's solutions are available on desktop, tablets and mobile devices and through its new Aspect Partner Program (APP).

LAS VEGAS, NVAvere Systems, a leading provider of enterprise storage for the hybrid cloud, announced a strategic collaboration with Google to enable customers to move compute intensive workloads and large data sets to Google Cloud Platform in order to reap the benefits of its highly-scalable and reliable infrastructure. Avere allows easy movement of data between NAS storage systems and Google Cloud Platform, delivering low latency and high-performance for big data processing and storage in the cloud.

 

Google Cloud Platform gives customers access to the same infrastructure that allows Google to return billions of search results in milliseconds, serve 6 billion hours of YouTube video per month and provide storage for 425 million Gmail users. Avere FXT Edge filers provide the flexibility to deploy and scale compute in Google Compute Engine using both on-premises and/or Google Cloud Storage resources. It is the only solution on the market today that lets companies finally connect the dots between cloud computing and on-premises storage.

 

“By collaborating with Avere, we have unlocked new cloud computing opportunities for innovative enterprises,” said Patrick McGregor, product management lead for Google Cloud Platform. “In industries such as media, financial services, and life sciences, we make it easy for enterprises to focus on doing what they do best—and we help them manage hybrid cloud storage. Our customers can flexibly run demanding apps in the cloud and store data anywhere, without sacrificing performance.”

 

At the 2015 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) exhibition in Las Vegas, from April 13-16, Avere will be demonstrating at booth SL10227 how its FXT Edge filer solutions work in conjunction with Google Cloud Platform for media and entertainment application workflows such as rendering, transcoding and storing large media archives. Avere will be joined by Google Cloud Platform engineers for these demonstrations and will host live Q&A sessions during show hours.

 

“With this collaboration, Avere is providing an easy transition to Google Cloud Platform by enabling the integration of compute and storage services with existing on-premises resources,” said Ron Bianchini, CEO and president of Avere Systems. “The result is a solution that provides ultimate flexibility for customers without sacrifices.”

 

About Avere Systems

Avere is radically changing the economics of data storage. Avere’s hybrid cloud solutions give companies – for the first time – the ability to put an end to the rising cost and complexity of data storage by allowing customers the freedom to store files anywhere in the cloud or on premises without sacrificing the performance, availability or security of their data. Based in Pittsburgh, Avere is led by veterans and thought leaders in the data storage industry and is backed by investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures, Norwest Venture Partners, Tenaya Capital, and Western Digital Capital. For more information, visit www.averesystems.com.

Tailor-made solution allows seamless transfer of live golf tournament feeds

 

MADLEY, UK – ETL Systems, a global designer and manufacturer of RF signal distribution equipment for satellite communications, has been chosen by CP Communications to support its new line of mobile production vehicles.

 

A range of ETL’s RF equipment including switch matrix / routers and RF combiners and splitters has been used to provide broadcasting capability to CP Communications’ six RF mobile units. ETL Enigma matrices are housed in the production trucks and allow CP Communications to seamlessly switch the RF-over-fibre mini-sites for 18-hole coverage of a live golf tournament.

 

Living up to its reputation of providing tailor-made solutions, ETL also developed a remote control software solution to meet CP Communications’ unique and highly specific requirements.

 

“We are delighted to be chosen by CP Communications, as this demonstrates that our RF range is flexible enough to be used in mobile solutions rather than just fixed satellite teleports,” said Susan Saadat, VP of ETL’s North American Office. “CP Communications needed RF distribution equipment with strong RF performance, especially signal isolation, and the Enigma L-band matrix design is the leader in this field.”

In addition to the Enigma series routers in the mobile units, CP Communications built a RF matrix flight pack using two Victor series matrix with RF distribution. This system debuted in Scotland at the Ryder Cup golf tournament.

 

Kurt G Heitmann, of CP Communications, a global leading provider of video and audio broadcast products and services, said: “CP Communications has the most comprehensive up-to-date digital equipment rental inventory in the industry so it is incredibly important that we choose products that will deliver the best broadcast ability available. ETL not only provides high-quality RF kit but was also able to provide a customised solution to exactly fit our specification.”

For further information about ETL Systems please see http://www.etlsystems.com/.

HOUSTON, Texas – The SouthEast Texas Regional Advisory Council (SETRAC) will be hosting its annual RHPC (Regional Healthcare Preparedness Coalition) CMOC (Catastrophic Medical Operation Center) functional exercise April 14-16 at the Harris County Emergency Operations Center (EOC).

“The RHPC hosts an annual exercise to allow regional and local healthcare agencies to test current emergency plans, policies and procedures ahead of an actual emergency,” said SETRAC Regional Preparedness Operations Director Lori A. Upton. “Exercises like these allow us to find gaps in our plans, and correct them before a real event occurs.”

A functional exercise examines the coordination, command and control between various multi-agency coordination centers. Although a functional exercise does not involve first responders or emergency officials responding to an incident in real time, some area hospitals will be conducting specific training like decontamination scenarios to test their personnel.

The exercise is primarily for healthcare agencies, emergency medical services (EMS) and hospitals, but was also open to area jurisdictions, schools, local offices of emergency management and public health agencies.  More than 170 agencies will be participating in this exercise.

“This year we will simulate a mass casualty incident, similar to the Boston Marathon bombing, to allow hospitals, EMS and CMOC to manage a large-scale mass casualty incident,” added Upton. “We will conduct the same scenario five times, once in each corridor.”

The scenario, will be an explosion at a public venue and a chemical release. This will help test the region’s ability to manage a large-scale simulated terrorist attack and surge and mass fatality plans in the region.  

CMOC will activate at the Harris County EOC, located at Houston TranStar, all other agencies will participate from their own facilities.

The SouthEast Texas Regional Advisory Council (SETRAC) has two separate missions which are the Hospital Preparedness Program and clinical service lines. SETRAC prepares our twenty-five county region for manmade or natural emergencies, disasters and mass casualty events.  Trauma, stroke, cardiac and pediatric service lines focus on establishing protocols and standards of care to deliver our community the appropriate care through the appropriate facilities with the appropriate care givers. 

The Regional Healthcare Preparedness Coalition (RHPC) is the preparedness committee of SETRAC. RHPC provides collaborative planning and response to emergencies, and preserves the medical infrastructure of the region.         

Peer 1 Hosting study reveals declining use of On-Premise and Private Cloud

 

LONDON, UK – Independent research commissioned by Peer 1 Hosting has found that hybrid cloud adoption is set to triple over the next three years. This shift coincides with corresponding reductions in the use of Private and On-Premise cloud hosting environments, despite adoption of these technologies continuing to grow overall.

 

The study, which canvassed the opinions of over 900 IT decision makers from Canada, North America and the UK, asked: "What do you expect your organisation's approach to look like in one and three years' time?" 10% ofrespondents stated that currently they primarily use hybrid cloud, with 28% anticipating they will be using hybrid cloud in three years' time. In contrast, use of On-Premise hosting is anticipated to fall from 31% to 17% over the same period, whilst Private Cloud drops from 52% to 41%.

 

The drivers behind this shift appear to be largely economic. When asked to name the top IT Priorities within their organisations, Cutting IT Costs (49%) and Improving Processes and Operational Efficiencies (45%) were the two most commonly cited issues. When asked what the challenges in achieving these priorities were, Security (53%) and Data Protection (46%) were the most frequent responses given.

 

Toby Owen, Vice President Product, Peer 1 Hosting said: "The proposition of Hybrid Cloud is very compelling: cost savings, business agility and operational efficiencies are the qualities that IT decision makers are looking to bring into their organisations. From the research, it's clear that hybrid cloud adoption is outpacing that of public and private cloud."

Owen continues: "Hybrid cloud adoption appears to be held back by concerns largely related to security and data protection. Clearly these are areas where businesses cannot compromise. Fundamentally these concerns are about a perceived lack of control. As the industry responds to this, with truly scalable, flexible and controllable hybrid cloud solutions, I believe that IT decision makers will be quicker to adopt hybrid cloud than this research suggests."