The Continuity Logic customized demo provides an opportunity for qualifying organizations to evaluate Frontline Live 5™, with their plans, desired controls, policies, and procedures. This first-of-its-kind system for both business continuity and many other areas of Governance, Operational Risk and Compliance (GRC) is powerful, but often best viewed with some of your familiar plans, data and templates.


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Volume 28, Issue 3

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Jon Seals

Sungard AS study finds CIO and IT professionals worry most about information security, downtime and talent acquisition


Wayne, Pa., Jan. 28, 2015 – What worries chief information officers (CIOs) and IT professionals the most? According to a recent survey commissioned by Sungard® Availability Services™ (Sungard AS) – a leading provider of information availability through managed IT, cloud and recovery services – security, downtime and talent acquisition weigh heaviest on their minds.


Security threats put businesses at risk

Due to the increasing frequency and complexity of cyber-attacks, security ranks highest among IT concerns in the workplace for CIOs; as a result more than half of survey respondents (51%) believe security planning should be the last item to receive budget cuts in 2015.

While external security threats are top of mind for IT professionals, internal threats are often the root cause of security disasters. Nearly two-thirds of the survey respondents cited leaving mobile phones or laptops in vulnerable places as their chief security concern (62%), followed by password sharing (59%). These internal security challenges created by employees, lead 60 percent of respondents to note that in 2015 they would enforce stricter security policies for employees.

The deep concern about security is increasingly warranted. Aside from harming a company’s reputation, a security breach can prove costly. A recent study conducted by the Ponemon Institute found that the average cost of a data breach in 2014 exceeded $5.85 million.[1]


Downtime damages reputations

Second to security, downtime is also a leading concern for CIOs. Two-in-five (42%) respondents consider the testing of their disaster recovery plans vital to their organizations and also among the last line items that should be cut from 2015 IT budgets. Not only is downtime expensive, but the damage to an enterprise’s reputation far outweighs the monetary costs.

Disaster recovery testing dramatically reduces downtime (by 75%) for enterprises deemed “best-in-class” in disaster recovery and business continuity.[2] In addition, according to the Aberdeen Group, those that adopt strong resiliency plans can expect 90 percent less downtime per event compared to the industry average.


“Today CIOs are more concerned with the resiliency of their organizations and the consequences a disaster can have on an organization’s reputation and revenue stream,” said Keith Tilley, executive vice president, Global Sales & Customer Services, Sungard AS. “The implications that information security and downtime threats place on a business have evolved and become more complex in the last several years, making it a high priority for CIOs.”


Talent acquisition gets overlooked, yet continues to prove essential

The need for top IT talent continues to be a growing challenge for the technology sector in 2015 and 38 percent of respondents noted that CIOs are concerned about talent acquisition. This issue comes in third on the list of top work-related issues for IT professionals.

While this stands as a top-of-mind concern for CIOs, 50 percent of respondents believe talent acquisition and retention does not get the appropriate focus from the business and often gets overlooked. Talent acquisition ranked higher than any other overlooked IT issue in the workplace including data center expansion, shadow IT and others.

“It’s clear that information security, downtime avoidance and talent acquisition are of utmost importance for organizations across the board. The proper planning and preparation will allow CIOs and IT professionals to stay ahead of the game in 2015 and ultimately get a proper night’s rest,” concluded Tilley.



The survey, conducted by SurveyMonkey Audience, reached 276 IT professionals and was completed in December 2014.


About Sungard Availability Services
Sungard® Availability Services™ (Sungard AS) has more than 30 years of experience providing flexible availability services that help ensure organizations keep applications always on, always available. The company leverages its proven expertise to provide managed IT services, information availability consulting services, business continuity management software and disaster recovery services to clients in North America, Europe and India. Sungard AS helps customers improve the resiliency of their mission critical systems by designing, implementing and managing cost-effective solutions using people, process and technology to address enterprise IT availability needs.

 To learn more, visit www.sungardas.com or call 1-800-468-7483. Connect with us on Twitter @Sungardas, LinkedIn and Facebook.

Sungard Availability Services is a trademark of SunGard Data Systems or its affiliate, used under license. The Sungard Availability Services logo by itself is a trademark of Sungard Availability Services Capital, Inc. or its affiliate.

 PLDT Opens Global Point of Presence in London


LONDON Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT), the leading telecommunications provider in the Philippines, has further expanded its global Points of Presence (PoP) with the launch of an additional PoP in the UK through Telehouse Europe, one of the world’s largest data center operators. This allows PLDT to offer pan-global connectivity from the Philippines to the United Kingdom. With this deal, signed through PLDT UK, the company can now provide clients with an Ethernet International Private Leased Circuit (E/IPLC) service from the United Kingdom to the rest of the world, as part of its Global Managed Ethernet service offerings.


The PLDT UK PoP has direct connections to Hong Kong and the United States of America, enabling it to achieve optimal latency for its customers around the world. This builds on over 500 domestic Ethernet nodes that it owns in the Philippines and POPs in Singapore, Japan, U.S. and Hong Kong.  


“We are very proud to add the UK to our ever growing managed international network,” says Jovy Hernandez, PLDT FVP and PLDT ALPHA Enterprise Head. “Our constant drive to deliver world class service to our customers around the globe allows them to focus on what matters the most and allows their customers to do the same.”


Michelle Reid, Director of Sales and Marketing at Telehouse adds, “PLDT has made a great decision to expand their E/IPLC into the UK, as the market becomes ever more significant in the global telecommunications infrastructure. With over 535 connectivity providers now in the Telehouse Docklands campus, we look forward to enabling them to maximize the opportunity this expansion represents.”


PLDT is the only Philippine Telco to have been a consistent finalist and awardee at the prestigious Metro Ethernet Forum Ethernet Excellence Awards for APAC. The company continues to partner with regional and global providers to expand its coverage and deliver global-class Ethernet services to its customers.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015 00:00

The New Reality of Weather Risk

What do you do when you are responsible for the safety of town, county or state residents and forecasts call for drastic weather conditions? Risk professionals can come under criticism if they are overly cautious, yet under-reacting can mean lives are at stake.

Take the current situation here in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. Predictions called for one- to three-feet of snow and blizzard conditions over a wide swath of the tri-state area and states of emergency were declared. Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York yesterday called for a full travel ban in 13 counties, beginning at 11:00 p.m. Those breaking the ban were subject to fines of up to $300, he said.

“With forecasts showing a potentially historic blizzard for Long Island, New York City, and parts of the Hudson Valley, we are preparing for the worst and I urge all New Yorkers to do the same – take this storm seriously and put safety first,” Gov. Cuomo said.



(TNS) — Gov. Jerry Brown’s office is urging state emergency and law enforcement agencies to take advantage of a system that uses cellphone towers to pinpoint and send alerts.

Established in 2012 through a collaboration between the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Communications Commission and the wireless industry, the Wireless Emergency Alerts system is meant to complement existing alert systems.

“The Wireless Emergency Alerts are just one addition,” said Lilly Wyatt, an Office of Emergency Services spokesperson. “It’s an additional tool that local agencies can use for public messages.”

Of the 58 counties in California, only 24 have signed up to send alerts through the system.



By Sal DiFranco

Misrepresentation isn’t reserved for entry-level interviewees. Chief Information Officer (CIO) candidates can exaggerate their accomplishments with the best of them. Let’s say you and your fellow C-suite executives need to hire a CIO. You know what you want – that picture-perfect ideal CIO candidate. Someone who is current on technology while being business savvy. Someone who takes smart risks when it comes to new technology, but who has insight on when to maintain the systems already in place. Someone who can talk to any segment of the business in their own terms, rather than resorting to technical jargon.

Of course, when interviewing CIO candidates, they will all try to make you believe they are that ideal CIO. It is up to you to identify any bull that get tossed around during the interview process, which is why I’ve come up with five specific points to watch out for.



Information security has become a fixture in the daily headlines, ranging from the latest high-profile data breach; to exotic hacks of USB drives, ICS devices and IOT systems; and new zero-day exploits and attack techniques. While these stories are interesting and help us understand the vulnerabilities and risks that make up the threat landscape, they reflect a frequent bias in the industry towards focusing on the ‘cool’ exploit and detection side of cyber-defense, rather than the more operational response and mitigation side. One of the results of this focus, as reported in a recent SANS study, is that for over 90 percent of incidents, the time from incident discovery to remediation was one hour or longer.

This appears to be changing, however, as new reports shine a spotlight on incident response as both welcome and essential, and now courts are reinforcing that sentiment. This article by Proofpoint considers the other side of the equation and look at incident response. A comprehensive view of threat management includes people, processes, and tools in a process outlined below.



Advice from James Leavesley, CEO, CrowdControlHQ.

Social media is no longer the exclusive preserve of the ‘Facebook Generation’ eager to connect with each other or simply a channel for consumer advertisers. It is fast becoming a valuable multi-faceted communications tool with many industries actively using social media networking sites to promote their products and services and drive commercial success.

Mirroring the trend, the finance industry is also waking up to the power of engaging with customers through social media at a time when its clients are increasingly turning to online resources for information and advice. Last year, consultancy giant Capgemini forecast that social media was on its way to becoming a “bona fide channel for executing transactions” and previously a study by Accenture stated that half of US financial advisers had successfully used social media to convert enquiries into clients. So far, so good so what’s the catch?



The answer to this question depends on how fast you want your data back and how much time and effort you are prepared to spend. If your data is both mission and time critical, then full, frequent backups possibly with mirrored systems for immediate restore or failover may be the only solution. Financial trading organisations, large volume e-commerce sites and hospital emergency wards are examples. Other users who do not want to or cannot go down this route will be faced with more basic options.



Tuesday, 27 January 2015 00:00

Winter Storms and Power Outages

As the blizzard of 2015 starts to hit hard across the Northeast, with several feet of snow, intense cold and high winds expected, utility companies are warning of widespread and potentially lengthy power outages across the region.

In New Jersey, utility companies say it’s the high winds, with gusts of up to 65 mph, rather than the accumulation of snow, that are likely to bring down trees or tree limbs and cause outages.

Consolidated Edison inc. which supplies electricity to over 3 million customers in New York City and Westchester county, told the WSJ that the light and fluffy snow expected in this blizzard should limit the number of power outages, but elevated power lines could come down if hit by trees.



Federal leaders want to like the cloud. They really do.

Then again, they have to — they’re under a cloud first mandate. And yet, they’re still not gung-ho when it comes to actually pursuing adoption, a recent survey shows.

Every year, MeriTalk surveys federal managers about cloud adoption. In the latest survey of 150 federal executives, nearly one in five say one-quarter of their IT services are fully or partially delivered via the cloud.

For the most part, they’re shifting email (50 percent), web hosting (45 percent) and servers/storage (43 percent). They’re not moving traditional business applications, custom business apps, disaster recovery ERP or middleware.

And it seems they’re pretty happy with that so far. This year, 75 percent said they want to migrate more services to the cloud — except they’re worried about retaining control of their data.