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Volume 27, Issue 4

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Jon Seals

DENVER – Flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States.  Recent years have seen more frequent severe weather events, like Hurricane Sandy, which ravaged the East Coast.  The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) manages the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) that provides flood insurance policies that provide millions of Americans their first line of defense against flooding.  But those flood insurance policies are only one component of the program and just part of the protection NFIP provides to individuals and the American public at large.

For anyone to be able to purchase an NFIP policy, the only requirement is that they live in a participating community.  A participating community can be a town or city or a larger jurisdiction like a township or county that includes unincorporated areas.  It is up to the community to opt into the NFIP program for the benefit of its citizens.  When joining the program, the community agrees to assess flood risks and to establish floodplain management ordinances.  In return for taking these actions, residents are able to purchase federally backed flood insurance policies.

One of the cornerstones of the NFIP is the flood mapping program.  FEMA works with states and local communities to conduct studies on flood risks and develop maps that show the level of risk for that area, called a Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM).  The FIRM provides useful information that can assist in communities in planning development.  The area that has the highest risk of flooding is the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), commonly called the floodplain.  The SFHA has a one percent chance of being flooded in any given year.  Because of the greater risk, premiums for flood insurance policies for properties in the SFHA are greater than for those for properties outside of it. 

Equally important to knowing the risks of flooding is having a game plan to address those risks.  This is role of floodplain management.  Local communities must comply with minimum national standards established by FEMA, but are free to develop stricter codes and ordinances should they choose to do so.  Key elements of floodplain management include building codes for construction in the floodplain and limitations on development in high risk areas.  Floodplain management is an ongoing process, with communities continually reassessing their needs as new data becomes available and the flood risk for areas may change.

The NFIP brings all levels of government together with insurers and private citizens to protect against the threat of flooding.  Federally sponsored flood maps and locally developed floodplain regulations give property owners the picture of their risk and ensure building practices are in place to minimize that risk.  As a property owner, purchasing a flood insurance policy is a measure you can take to further protect yourself.  To find out more about your individual risk contact your local floodplain administrator. For more information on flood insurance policies or to find an agent, visit www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-800-427-2419.

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.

DENVER – There’s a hidden threat that strikes countless unprepared Americans each year – flooding.  Unlike fire, wind, hail or most other perils, flood damage is not covered by a homeowners’ policy.  An uninsured flood loss can undo a lifetime’s worth of effort and create a mountain of bills.  Fortunately, a National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policy provides the defense against such losses and can ensure that a flood doesn’t bring financial ruin.

Flooding is an ever present threat; it can happen at any time and in virtually any location.  While certain areas may be more prone to flooding – especially those in coastal areas or riverine environments – history has shown that almost no place is immune to flooding.  Flooding can have many causes: a quick heavy rainfall or rapid snowmelt can cause flash flooding, a blocked culvert or storm sewer drain can create flooding in a city neighborhood, or prolonged wet weather can swell streams and rivers.  Even dry conditions can pose a threat, as minimal rainfall in wildfire burn areas or drought stricken regions can create flash flooding when soils are unable absorb even slight precipitation.

Flood insurance is easy to get, the only requirement is that you live in a participating community (which might be a county or other jurisdiction for those living in unincorporated areas).  That’s right; you don’t need to live in a floodplain to purchase a policy.  In fact, if you live outside a floodplain you may be eligible for a preferred risk policy that has a much lower premium than for a policy in a higher flood risk area.  And in most cases you can purchase an NFIP policy with the insurance agent you already deal with for other insurance needs.  When that isn’t possible, NFIP can put you in touch with another agent that can get you a flood insurance policy.

One key difference of an NFIP policy from another insurance policy is the 30-day waiting period prior to the policy going into effect.  But that doesn’t mean anyone should view a policy like a lottery ticket, something purchased only if flooding appears imminent.  A policy should be viewed as protection against a continuing threat rather than a hedge against a singular event such as anticipated spring flooding or following a wildfire.

The average flood insurance premium nationwide is about $700 a year – less than $2 a day for financial protection from what could be devastating effects of a flood to one’s home or business. By purchasing a policy now, or keeping your existing policy, you have peace of mind.  As with any insurance, be sure to talk with your agent about the specifics of your policy – how much coverage you need, coverage of contents as well as structure and any other questions you might have.

Find out more about your risk and flood insurance at www.floodsmart.gov. To purchase flood insurance or find an agent, call 1-800-427-2419.

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.

New models meet customer demand for a smaller appliance with solid-state drives and a smaller CommVault Expansion System

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.STORServer®, a leading provider of proven data backup solutions, today announces the launch of a second Entry-Level Backup Appliance, the BA641-CV (BA641-CV), and a new “Small” CommVault® Expansion System (EBA-EXPSM-CV). Both of the new systems are powered by CommVault.

BA641-CV is an upgraded version of the BA601-CV adding 256 gigabytes of two RAID-1 “value” class solid-state drives (SSDs). It is also upgraded to front plane hot swappable disks and comes with a faster processor. The net result is a cost savings for customer sites with up to 10 terabytes (TBs) of Front-End Terabyte (FET) capacity who would otherwise have to purchase the larger 20 TB FET EBA802-CV.

The EBA-EXPSM-CV introduces a new Expansion System that also offers a smaller footprint for Media Agent deployments at 10 TBs of FET. Called the Small CommVault Expansion System, this server provides convenience for customers with multiple Expansion System sites who need flexibility for remote sites or departments in the sub-10 TB range.

In addition to the new Expansion System offering, all Expansion Systems do not include installation. This allows customers the option to purchase installation separately. For multi Expansion System deployments, customers can purchase just one Expansion System installation and add the rest on their own.

“The development of these two new models comes in large part due to customer demand,” said Bill Smoldt, president and CEO of STORServer. “We are constantly making changes and improvements to our backup appliances to meet the needs of our diverse customer environments.”

Powered by TSM and CommVault, STORServer offers a complete suite of enterprise backup appliances, software and services that solve today’s backup, archive and disaster recovery challenges.

The STORServer Enterprise Backup Appliance (EBA) 2202 recently received the only “Best in Class” designation in analyst firm DCIG’s 2014-15 Integrated Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide. In addition, STORServer models took seven of the top 10 positions in the Guide.

STORServer provides every customer the opportunity to try out a backup appliance risk-free with its 30-day money back guarantee.

For more information on STORServer’s line of data backup solutions, visithttp://www.storserver.com. To download the full DCIG 2014 Integrated Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide, visithttp://backupapplianceguide.com.

About STORServer®
STORServer, Inc. is a leading provider of data backup solutions. The company offers a complete suite of appliances, software and services that solve today’s backup, archive and disaster recovery issues once and for all, while reducing install and management time to just minutes a day. STORServer sells exclusively through a nationwide network of industry-leading backup partners. For press inquiries, contact Megan Custodio at (317) 202-2280 x13 ormegan@dittoepr.com. For more information, visitwww.storserver.com.

NEW YORK, NY – Send Word Now, the leading worldwide provider of emergency notification and critical communications services, announced today that David’s Bridal has chosen Send Word Now as its emergency notification service provider.

With more than 60 years of experience dressing women of all ages for life’s special occasions, David's Bridal understands the importance of providing brides-to-be with a vast selection of exquisitely crafted bridal gowns and bridal party dresses. Known for outstanding value, fashionable designs and the ease of one-stop shopping, nearly 60% of all brides in the US choose to shop at one of more than 300 David’s Bridal stores located across the US, Canada, UK and Puerto Rico.

“With growth comes the need for a comprehensive and evolving business resiliency strategy,” said Scott Strahler, VP of Infrastructure & Operations, for David’s Bridal. “Using Send Word Now, we can quickly communicate with employees during situations such as inclement weather and IT disruptions, which can unfavorably impact daily operations.”

Send Word Now, recognized by DRI International as “Notification System of the Year,” is used by more than 1,700 public and private sector organizations globally. The service is capable of transmitting tens of thousands of voice and text messages in minutes, while gathering feedback needed for rapid and sound decision making.

Among the Send Word Now features and critical communications capabilities David’s Bridal will employ are Self-Registration Portal and Desktop Alerting. The portal will allow company employees to enter and maintain their personal contact information, helping ensure data accuracy within the notification service. The fully integrated Desktop Alerting service will enable the company to send “pop up” messages directly to employee computers, instantly making them aware of email viruses, evacuations or other potential business interruptions.

“Knowing that millions of brides have trusted David’s Bridal for one of the most important days of their lives, we consider it an honor the company trusts us for critical communications services,” said Lorin Bristow, Senior Vice President, Marketing, for Send Word Now. “We look forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship with this admirable and growing organization.”

About Send Word Now
Headquartered in New York City, Send Word Now is the leading provider of on-demand alerting for crisis communication. The company’s easy-to-use, web-based emergency notification solutions and mobile applications are used by businesses, government agencies, universities, and non-profit organizations to ensure fast, effective, two-way communication when it is needed the most.

Send Word Now's enterprise-class notification service is capable of transmitting tens of thousands of voice and text messages in minutes, while providing a full audit trail for after-action reporting and follow-up. It is designed to reach anyone, anywhere, anytime, with any device, over any type of connection. Send Word Now was recently awarded “Notification System of the Year” by DRI International, and also received the 2013 Small Business Achievement Award from the Department of Homeland Security for its work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).​

Glendale, CA and Colchester, EnglandEverbridge, the leader in Unified Critical Communications, announced today that it has acquired UK-based Vocal, the leading UK provider of Business Continuity and Communication solutions. The strategic acquisition further elevates Everbridge’s status as the world’s largest provider of emergency notification and critical communication solutions. With the addition of Vocal, Everbridge now offers the broadest product family in the industry, delivered through 12 distributed datacenters, and supported by employees in seven offices in North America, Europe, and Asia. The combined entity will serve more than 2,500 global clients who use the solution to communicate with over 50 million unique end-users every year.

“Our rapidly growing market continues to demand increased global scale and connectivity.” said Jaime Ellertson, president and CEO of Everbridge. “Today’s announcement demonstrates our commitment to creating the industry’s most comprehensive global ecosystem of local support, strategic partners, and world-class solutions for critical communications.”

 Vocal are recognized as Europe’s most trusted innovators, and awarding winning providers of business continuity, emergency notification and incident response solutions. Today, Vocal serves over 1,000 customers across 85 countries including some of the world’s largest employers and central government organizations as well as being selected as the supplier of the Emergency Messaging System for Incident Management at the London 2012 games.  

“We are thrilled to be a part of the Everbridge team,” said Trevor Wheatley-Perry, founder and Managing Director of Vocal. “With two industry leaders joining forces, we are now positioned to provide our customers with the industry’s richest solutions, coupled with the broadest and deepest global support and expertise available.”

Vocal will continue to support its full product line and customers as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Everbridge. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

For complete details of how Everbridge and Vocal can help you prepare for critical events and emergencies, manage daily incidents, and reduce operational risk and IT downtime please visit www.everbridge.com.

 

About Everbridge:
Everbridge provides a critical communication suite that helps clients be better prepared, make better decisions, and respond quickly and confidently during disruptive events. When an incident happens, whether it’s anaturaldisaster or an IT outage, we automate communications to ensure that the right messages get to the right people at the right time.  Widely recognized by analysts as the market leader, Everbridge solutions are trusted by clients in all major industries and government sectors to connect with over 50 million people around the world.

CARROLLTON, Texas – Critical Solutions International (CSI) announced today that the Maryland Transit
Administration (MTA) has selected its Intelligent Video Surveillance Solution to provide advanced video security at selected rail stations
within the state's rapid transit network.

CSI is bringing threat detection and advanced security solutions to Homeland Security applications based on its extensive wartime
experience. Upon completion of installation, the company's Intelligent Video Surveillance Solution will result in enhanced security and safety
for thousands of commuters, as well as first responders, while saving time and taxpayer money due to its unique alerting capabilities. The
system actively notifies safety and security personnel of unusual events such as the intrusion of unauthorized areas, unattended luggage,
or loitering. In addition the system stores an enormous amount of digital video data that can be rapidly analyzed (in the case of an
event) through customized searches.

Michael McCormack, CEO of CSI, said, "Security personnel who utilize our intelligence software have found it easy to navigate and access
camera views, retrieve stored video, perform retrospective searches, and define alarm criteria per camera. We are looking forward to seeing
the system fully implemented and are proud to provide this enhanced security capability to the state of Maryland."

CSI's strategic partners bring a wealth of local as well as worldwide expertise. Glynn Wright, CEO of Aralia, stated, "We are pleased to be
working with CSI on phase four of this project, using Aralia's comprehensive and field proven surveillance and security software.
Aralia is dedicated to the task of delivering the most modern surveillance technology to the MTA."

A/C Power and Skyline Technology Solutions of Baltimore will upgrade a number of locations by replacing old analog cameras with digital
technology. Kevin Cosby Sr., President of A/C Power, a minority-owned electrical contractor based in Baltimore Maryland said, "As a member of
the IBEW, NECA and Local 24, we are proud to have the opportunity to install the infrastructure of this important project."

About Critical Solutions International (CSI)
CSI is a world leader in the development, delivery, and service support of security solutions and blast-protected vehicles. An essential supplier of the U.S. security, countermine and humanitarian demining community, CSI's products lead the way in the safe detection and identification of hidden threats. For information about CSI, visit www.c-s-i.com.

Pioneering OEM Solutions Provider for CATV, Telco and Hospitality Industries Leverages DxConsole Software to Ensure Failover, High Availability (HA), Ease of Management and Six-Figure Savings

 

FORT COLLINS, Colo. – DH2i Company, the leading provider of server application virtualization solutions, today announced that , a premier OEM solutions provider for the CATV, Telco and Hospitality industries, has deployed its ™ software to ensure failover and high availability (HA), simplify management, and dramatically reduce the costs of its Microsoft SQL Server environment.  Vecima's R&D/production, operations and administrative teams now enjoy uninterrupted access to their respective applications and information.  This in turn facilitates the customization and delivery of client-specific solutions in the quickest turn-around time possible.  These capabilities allow Vecima to fully meet its customers' expectations for performance, reliability, delivery and price. 

 

Vecima's datacenter is responsible for providing the infrastructure and applications that serve as the backbone of the company's entire business operations - from the manufacturing of the its broadband cable, broadband wireless, and hospitality networks solutions to the systems responsible for testing and tracking errors, to supporting financial, operations and administrative functions.  Its primary platforms are Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2, HP blade servers, and HP EVA4400 storage, together with a variety of homegrown and vendor-purchased applications.  Recently, the datacenter team sought to upgrade its Windows and Microsoft SQL Server Environment, but was unable due to the PolyServe software currently in use.

 

"We were on an old version of HP that was managing our failover.  Unfortunately, PolyServe has been end-of-lifed and is no longer supported.  The old version of PolyServe that we were running was not compatible with any type of OS upgrade.  Consequently, we were somewhat stuck on Windows Server 2003 and couldn't upgrade to Windows Server 2008.  We were even behind on the latest PolyServe version, as we didn't have the capacity to carry out an upgrade at the time it was available," explained Mark Horseman, Technical Supervisor, Software and Database Services, Vecima Networks.  "And, we were trapped on the SQL Server side too, as we didn't feel that the PolyServe version we were running would be able to adequately update our databases."

 

Another challenge Vecima faced with its PolyServe environment was in that its nodes were clustered in pairs, so that one system could failover to another.  However, with PolyServe it couldn't continue down the chain.  And, even when a failover completed successfully, it took far too long.

 

Vecima began to explore the available options.  One solution Horseman considered was switching to the Enterprise Edition of Microsoft SQL Server, but even for a company the size of Vecima, it just didn't make sense from a budgetary or ROI standpoint.

 

After careful research and a lengthy proof of concept (POC), Vecima decided to opt for the DH2i DxConsole software solution, based on its features, functionality and price.  More specifically, Vecima was sold on DxConsole's failover capabilities - the Vecima team found high availability (HA) easy to implement with its built-in prioritized and automatic failover.  Moreover, by going with DxConsole, they would have an easier to use solution with greater functionality, and would save well into the six-figure range over going with SQL Server Enterprise Edition. 

 

"Since production deployment, we have had a couple 'hiccups' on the SQL Server side and DxConsole has failed over brilliantly.  It has been fantastic to manage - we don't dread upgrades anymore.  We don't have to worry about the order in which we bring blades back up, like we did before.  We can easily define in DxConsole what our highest priority systems are and make sure they get priority on a machine when they come back up," said Horseman.

 

"Vecima Networks' dedication to meeting its customers' expectations for quality and unparalled innovation can be witnessed across the entire company - its datacenter being no exception," said Don Boxley, CEO and Co-Founder of .  "With DxConsole, Vecima was able to quickly and easily upgrade its datacenter infrastructure, while saving well into the six-figures over competing solutions."  He continued,  "Today, Vecima can enjoy the benefits of a more efficiently managed IT environment, that ensures its users uninterrupted and accurate data access."

 

Vecima plans to leverage DxConsole as it continues to add additional databases, update and add to its blades, as well as update its SAN.

 

To learn more, please read the Vecima Networks case study found at: http://dh2i.com/resources/case_studies/Vecima_Networks.php 

 

Current DH2i Promotion:

20% off DxConsole for current PolyServe customers (offer valid until June 30, 2014) - click here to learn more: http://dh2i.com/promos/20_percent_off_dxconsole_for_current_polyserve_customers.php 

 

About Vecima Networks

Vecima Networks provides specialized and custom OEM solutions for the CATV, Telco and Hospitality industries. Its products are used for encryption, decryption, processing, converting and transporting all types of digital media within connected-device ecosystems. FleetLynx™ (), also from Vecima, is a complete fleet management solution enabling dispatchers and managers to monitor productivity of mobile staff through real-time event management.  For further information, please visit: http://www.vecima.com.

 

About DH2i:

DH2i Company is the leading provider of server application virtualization solutions.  Its software products enable a unified operational model that orchestrates management, across heterogeneous physical, virtual, cloud and hybrid infrastructures.  DxConsole provide individual instance mobility and policy-based monitoring, intelligently automating IT operations and maintaining required performance and availability SLAs. For further information, please visit the DH2i website: www.dh2i.com, call: 970-295-4505 or +44 20 3318 9204, or email: 

March 14, 2014

What Could Be Worse?

If you wear the CIO hat of a very large retail company, what could be worse than to have your site broken into and tens of millions of customers’ information records stolen and … right at the peak of the holiday season? Well, I suppose it could be worse if your organization had recently spent millions to buy the latest in security equipment and software and set up a large, 24×7 monitoring center halfway around the world to monitor the critical alerts from security software … and then when someone 12 time zones away did notice that the organization’s networks had been breached and sent a notice to their overlords in the US, nothing much happened for nearly three weeks while the bad guys were stealing millions of customers’ credit card information and passwords.

Of course, that could be a really big problem. In fact, it might get a CIO, along with a number of underlings, fired after having to testify on nationwide TV before Congress, and after launching a huge internal review to see what really happened and placing blame somewhere other than at the top. And all this might cause any company to lose hundreds of millions in sales and frighten away millions of loyal customers … and three months later it might be on the front cover of one of the US’s leading business journals (see “Missed Alarms and 40 Million Stolen Credit Card Numbers: How Target Blew It“).

...

http://blog.cutter.com/2014/03/14/what-could-be-worse/

Tomorrow, March 15 is enshrined as one of the most famous days of all-time, the “Ides of March”. On this day in 44 BC, the “Dictator for Life” Julius Caesar was assassinated by a group of Roman nobleman who did not want Caesar alone to hold power in the Roman Empire. It was however, this event, which sealed the doom of the Roman Republic as his adopted son Octavian first defeated the Republic’s supporters and then his rival Dictator Marc Anthony and became the first Emperor of the new Roman Empire, taking the name Augustus.

One of the more interesting questions in any anti-corruption compliance regime is to what extent your policies and procedures might apply in your dealings with customers. Clearly customers are third parties and in the sales chain but most compliance programs do not focus their efforts on customers. However, some businesses only want to engage with reputable and ethical counter-parties so some companies do put such an analysis into their compliance decision calculus.

However, companies in the US, UK and other countries who do not consider the corruption risk with a customer may need to rethink their position after the recent announcements made by Citigroup Inc. regarding its Mexico operations.

...

https://tfoxlaw.wordpress.com/2014/03/14/the-ides-of-march-and-evaluation-of-compliance-risk/

Network World — Making the leap to SDN? Don't jump in blind. It helps to know what software-defined networking is, first off, and then what it can do for you.

Then it's smart to know all the inner workings of an SDN controller, the differences between products offered by established vendors and start-ups, and whether open source and bare metal switching might be an option. Lastly, learn your own network -- will it even support SDN or require a wholesale rip-and-replace? -- and then learn from your peers about their experiences. Here's an 11-tip guide on how to prep for SDNs:

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http://www.cio.com/article/749683/11_Tips_to_Prepare_for_SDN