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Summer Journal

Volume 28, Issue 3

Full Contents Now Available!

Jon Seals

ContinuitySA provides advice for organizations based in areas where power supplies are unstable.

One risk that has become very real for South African businesses is load-shedding. An unstable power supply with the potential of extended periods of power outages over the next several years creates a range of risks that have to be integrated into current business continuity plans.

“We know that load-shedding is going to occur and, in order to put mitigation strategies in place, we first need to understand what the implications are,” says Michael Davies, CEO of ContinuitySA. “What are the issues that businesses should be looking at? Now is a good time to update your business continuity plans in order to assess the impact of load-shedding on your business and weigh up what your risk appetite is.”

Davies says that because electricity is now so integral to modern society, load-shedding creates a complex and interdependent set of risks over and above the task of just keeping the business’s lights on. These risks need to be understood within the context of each business's strategic plan.

...

http://www.continuitycentral.com/feature1283.html

Picture this. A main water pipe bursts and water begins to flood the warehouse, which is also where you happen to be, smartphone in pocket. To avert serious damage and downtime, you need to find the cut-off valve – quickly. At this point, two scenarios are possible. First scenario: you try to find out who can help by calling reception and trying to note the names they suggest and the phone numbers. Second scenario: you access a directory of resources directly from your smartphone, call the person concerned and turn the call into a video call from that person’s desktop so that you can be remotely guided to where the cut-off valve is and how to shut it. How do you get from scenario one to scenario two?

...

http://www.opscentre.com.au/blog/the-importance-of-unified-communications-in-emergency-situations/

Tuesday, 24 February 2015 00:00

Our Infrastructure's Crucial Need: Resiliency

Although Washington remains stuck in partisan gridlock, there is one thing that Democrats and Republicans agree on: the need to reduce gridlock in the rest of the country by bringing America's infrastructure into the 21st century.

The basis for that rare consensus is painfully clear. The nation's infrastructure has earned a grade of D+ from the American Society of Civil Engineers, which estimates that it will cost $3.6 trillion to bring our systems to a state of good repair. Across the nation, aging and deteriorating bridges and water treatment plants pose a real threat to public health and safety and a drain on economic growth.

How and when Republicans and Democrats might find common ground to fix the problem remains to be seen. But when that does come to pass, here's another idea that should win support from both sides: Our next-generation of infrastructure must be resilient.

...

http://www.emergencymgmt.com/disaster/Infrastructures-Crucial-Need-Resiliency.html

Many efforts to implement ERM are unfocused, severely resourced constrained, and pushed down so far into the organization that it is difficult to establish relevance. The near-term results are “starts and stops” and ceaseless discussions to understand the objective. Risk is often an afterthought to strategy and risk management an appendage to performance management. Ultimately, the ERM implementation runs out of steam and is no longer sustainable.

While there is no one-size-fits-all, the following design principles will help overcome these issues:

...

http://www.corporatecomplianceinsights.com/gaining-traction-enterprise-risk-management/

Company to use proceeds to expand sales and marketing teams to respond to increased demand for its hyper-converged infrastructure products 

AUSTIN, Texas – Pivot3, a pioneer and innovator in the development of hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) solutions, has announced a $45 million equity and bank financing closing today.

Argonaut Private Equity, a new investor in Pivot3, joins S3 Ventures, InterWest Partners, Mesirow Financial Private Equity and the Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati investment fund in providing additional equity in this closing. As a part of this round, Steve Mitchell, managing director of Argonaut Private Equity, will join Pivot3’s Board of Directors.

“We invest in premier companies that can transform large and important industries,” said Steve Mitchell, managing director of Argonaut Private Equity. “Pivot3 is on the leading edge of a once-in-several-decades transformation of the underlying technology that operates IT data centers globally.”

Industry analysts predict dramatic market growth in hyper-converged systems. According to the Technology Business Research (TBR) quarterly webinar series in October 2014, “Converged systems are the go-to alternative to complicated piece-part infrastructure, sparking a $17.8B global market opportunity.”

“The pervasive need to address unmanageable IT complexity while providing lower cost and improved service on a global scale has created an environment for explosive growth in the HCI market,” said Ron Nash, chairman and CEO of Pivot3. “Pivot3 now has the opportunity to go from being an original innovator of hyper-converged infrastructure to becoming a global leader in providing transformative IT infrastructure technology to our customers, who are leaders in IT and security organizations.”

The new funding is aimed at accelerating Pivot3’s growth and extends the company’s technological competitive advantage. To accelerate its growth, the company will add resources to accomplish the following:

  • Extending its leadership position in very dense virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) implementations on blade appliances where storage space is at a premium;
  • Increasing its presence in data backup and disaster recovery, by leveraging its exceptional storage efficiency and the high fault tolerance of its patented Global Hyper-Convergence technology;
  • Increasing market share for solutions that enable 24x7x365 operations for critical video surveillance applications;
  • Continuing to transform its security operations center (SOC) with innovative virtualization and high-performance storage solutions like the Virtual Security Server; and
  • Providing Pivot3’s customers with the latest hyper-converged infrastructure to support additional IT workloads as they broaden the applications operating on the Pivot3 platform.

Pivot3 will use the new financing to invest in sales and marketing, recruit top talent across multiple job functions in various geographies globally and expand on its channel partner strategy.

In addition, Pivot3 will focus on taking a leadership role in enabling the use of advanced analytics designed to extract new insights from massive unstructured video data sets for business intelligence and enhanced security.

To learn more about Pivot3’s hyper-converged technology leadership, based on its unique and patented Scalar Erasure Coding, or to apply for one of the job openings, visit http://go.pivot3.com/lp_pr_funding_announcement.

About Pivot3
Pivot3 was founded in 2002 on the idea that today’s stack of virtual servers, shared storage and networks could be converged using software to drive down complexity and cost while dramatically increasing scale-out performance. Pivot3 delivered its first fully hyper-converged infrastructure appliance in 2008. Today, Pivot3 has more than 1,600 customers around the world deploying more than 13,000 globally hyper-converged infrastructure appliances. Pivot3 products are deployed in the video surveillance, virtual desktop, disaster recovery and video-based security markets, and have seen particular success in the healthcare, government, transportation, entertainment, education, gaming and retail vertical segments. The company has won numerous awards and was most recently selected by Forbes Magazine in 2013 as “One of America’s Most Promising Companies,” and by CRN in their top 50 Virtualization list for 2014. To learn more about Pivot3, visit www.pivot3.com.

Industry-First Solution Addresses Global Privacy Complexities and Challenges for Unmatched Cloud Data Protection

 

SUNNYVALE, Calif. –  Druva, the leader in data protection and governance at the edge, today unveiled a set of new capabilities that together comprise a comprehensive data privacy framework to enable businesses to meet growing global privacy demands. The new framework, built on Druva's industry-proven cloud security foundation, addresses often-neglected concerns about corporate and employee data misuse and emerging legal data requirements. 

There is a rapidly increasing data privacy concern around the globe; Germany, France, Russia, Singapore and others have recently taken steps to ensure the privacy of their citizens' personal information by adopting new data protection regulations. This, combined with existing regulations such as HIPAA and FINRA in the United States has had a sweeping impact on global corporations. These businesses must now adapt their IT infrastructure to support the varied regional requirements or face potential sanctions and/or legal repercussions.

Druva centralizes and controls business data residing on employees' desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones via integrated endpoint backup, data loss prevention, IT-managed file sharing, and data governance controls. Druva continually mirrors end-user data, which enables rapid data recovery for lost or stolen devices, allows remote user access to any file or folder from any device, and supports eDiscovery, compliance and forensics needs.

The new privacy capabilities include geo-defined governance and administration features that ensure data privacy. Druva customers can also delegate storage and data administration rights to regional personnel, enabling global organizations to meet varied regional data privacy requirements within a single cloud solution. This geo-specific capability is critical for global organizations such as those with operations in Germany, whose data protection act mandates stringent employee data regulations, including a ban on data storage outside the country.

The new features complement Druva's use of Amazon Web Services, which recently opened its German region and supports data centers worldwide, as the underlying inSync cloud infrastructure. Druva now supports over 11 regions, which include Germany, GovCloud, Japan, and Australia.

"Securing data is important, but addressing security without enacting appropriate privacy measures leaves data -- and companies -- vulnerable. Today, more than ever, global organizations must comply with regional data regulations. Privacy concerns are being forced into IT's top priorities. Focusing exclusively on security can compromise privacy, exposing organizations to negative publicity as well as possible legal and regulatory action," said Jaspreet Singh, CEO, Druva. "With 70 percent of new inSync customers now choosing our cloud deployment option, we have developed a rigorous privacy framework to reduce those risks and support their global needs."

Druva Privacy Framework
The components of Druva's data privacy framework are designed to protect organizations from unauthorized data access, thwart misuse of employee data by authorized users, and ensure data integrity regarding legal or compliance initiatives. This unique combination of safeguards includes:

Regional Privacy

  • Global Storage Locations: Support for 11 global admin selectable regions that are policy-configured to ensure data is stored to meet DPA requirements, including the newest region in Germany.
  • Data Producibility Restrictions: Druva's approach to storing unique block data separated from metadata, along with its unique envelope key encryption model, delivers the highest level of data-scrambling and obfuscation ensuring cloud data privacy -- no third party, not even Druva under court order, can provide access to your data.
  • Delegated Role-Based Administrators: Regional end-to-end data management enables global organizations to meet local privacy laws while maintaining a single system of record for corporate governance.

Corporate Privacy

  • Privacy policy for officers: Enables organizations to identify officers who may handle sensitive materials in order to prevent their data from being visible to anyone else in the organization.
  • Audit trails for end-users and administrators:  Ensuring that all data access and file sharing activity is tracked with tamper-proof audit logs so that data privacy violations and interference with data integrity can be identified for forensics, regulatory, eDiscovery, and compliance investigations.

Employee-Based Privacy

  • Individual privacy controls:  Depending on regional requirements, end-users can be set private by default or flag their personal data to ensure administrators do not have visibility into their data.
  • Data segregation:  With Druva's mobile device containerization and exclusionary backup controls end-user personal data can be maintained separate from corporate data on both BYOD and COPE devices.

Scenario-Based Privacy

  • Adaptive Administrator Roles: Administrative flexibility enables organization to address specific needs around compliance and litigation. For example, an explicitly defined legal administrator can override privacy controls to enforce data governance.

To learn more about Druva's new data privacy framework, visit www.druva.com/dataprivacy or join Druva for a live webinar on March 12 titled, "Cloudy or Clear? Understanding Today's Global Privacy Requirements in the Cloud."

About Druva
Druva is the leader in data protection and governance at the edge, bringing visibility and control to business information in the increasingly mobile and distributed enterprise. Built for public and private clouds, Druva's award-winning inSync and Phoenix solutions prevent data loss and address governance, compliance and eDiscovery needs on laptops, smart-devices and remote servers. As the industry's fastest growing edge data protection provider, Druva is trusted by over 3,000 global organizations on over 3 million devices. Learn more at www.druva.com and join the conversation at twitter.com/druvainc.

ATLANTA, Ga. – U.S. Security Associates (USA) announces the addition of the Measles: Awareness, Prevention, and Response training module to its lineup of award-winning security officer training resources. 

Recent outbreaks in the U.S. of this once rare and commonly thought to be eradicated disease point to its strongest comeback since the introduction of the measles vaccine in 1963. In response to the re-emergence of measles, USA has developed a brief, concise, and hard-hitting training module.  Topics include the history of measles, how measles is spread, symptoms and health implications of measles and important preventive measures and treatment options for measles.

The latest of the USA “Short Series”, this module also includes a video highlighting the importance of measles vaccination and outlines key points related to the current controversy surrounding vaccination. The module is presented in a read-only/go at your own pace format, includes a brief exam to verify the learner’s knowledge, and is suitable for and available to client personnel.

The module is offered through The USA Security Academy, the corporate university USA founded to provide consistent training for thousands of security officers from coast to coast. Through steady program expansion, innovative applications of technology, and strategic alignment with business objectives, The USA Security Academy training has earned widespread recognition, including two ASTD Best awards from the American Society for Training and Development and Training magazine’s Top 125 ranking for nine consecutive years.

Robert Lowrey, Manager of USA Security Academy, notes that the company’s service mission drives the development of security officer training. “A dynamic training program is the key to effective security service and exceptional customer service. We are always focused on adding high-quality training to our inventory in the USA Security Academy. We are training our workforce to provide the best service.”

ABOUT U.S. SECURITY ASSOCIATES  
U.S. Security Associates (USA) is North America’s security solutions leader, with 160 locally-responsive offices providing premier national security services and global consulting and investigations. The company provides career paths for over 46,000 security professionals serving several thousand clients and a range of industries. Innovative applications of leading-edge, proprietary technology enable USA to rank annually among the world’s best training companies, meet the globally recognized ISO standard for quality management, and underscore world-class customer service with unparalleled accountability. USA’s rise as one of today’s largest security companies is a natural byproduct of these differentiators together with a commitment to investing in employee reward and development, giving back to local communities and relentlessly striving to be a security company that is Safe.Secure.Friendly.SM. For more information, visit www.ussecurityassociates.com.

EXETER, RI – Carousel Industries, a leader in unified communications, managed services, data solutions and visual communications, announced that it has earned recognition on The Channel Company’s 2015 CRN Managed Service Provider (MSP) 500 list as one of the MSP Elite 150. This annual list distinguishes the top technology providers and consultants in North America whose leading approach to managed services enables their customers to improve operational efficiencies, elicit greater value from their IT investments, and successfully leverage technology to achieve greater competitive advantage.

In today’s world of outsourced IT, the expertise of MSPs has become increasingly important to organizations. The plethora of choices in terms of consumption and procurement of technology can become overwhelming. To help facilitate companies’ selection and adoption of managed services and providers, CRN, the leading media outlet for technology vendors and solution providers who serve end-user customers, has identified the top 500 MSPs.

This year, CRN’s industryfocused directory highlights the Top 500 MSPs in three categories: 100 Hosting Providers who are experienced in providing mainly off-premise, or cloud-based, services; 150 Elite Service Providers who are large data center-focused solution providers with a strong mix of on-premise professional services as well as off-premise services; and 250 Progressive Service Providers who have a business model heavily weighted toward managed services geared toward the small and midsize business market.
 
Carousel launched its SmartPoint managed services program in 2009, when the company made significant efforts to scale its service and support to its many customers across a diversity of vertical markets. This best of breed program was designed to flexibly align with business processes and adapt to a range of different company types, providing end-users with more visibility into critical business applications with powerful monitoring tools and quality of service features.

“The allure of Everything-as-a-Service to organizations is largely rooted in the appeal of predictable operational expenses, cost-cutting, resource allocation and access to on-demand/pay-as-you-go technology. Therein lies a great need for the expertise of managed service providers,” said Robert Faletra, CEO, The Channel Company. “We congratulate the managed service providers who have engineered, or re-engineered, their businesses to deliver the services their customers rely on for future growth and ongoing success.”

"We are excited to have earned a spot once again on CRN's MSP 500," commented James Marsh, Senior Vice President, Carousel Industries. "Our managed services capabilities remain among the finest in the industry, and this continues to be one of our fastest growing business segments. Seamless operation of end users' unified communications infrastructures is mission critical — our team is able to handle all the monitoring, maintenance and operation of our customers' infrastructures in a secure fashion so they can focus on their business."

Coverage of the MSP500 will be featured in the February 2015 issue of CRN and online at www.CRN.com,
 
To learn more about Carousel's Avaya midmarket solutions, please visit http://www.carouselindustries.com/industry-solutions/mid-market-solutions.

 
About Carousel
Carousel Industries consults, integrates, and manages technology solutions that solve business problems and contribute to your organizations’ growth. This includes unified communications, managed services, virtualization, Voice over IP (VoIP), video conferencing and collaboration and data infrastructure solutions.
 
Today we have over 6,000 customers, including 35 of the Fortune 100. Carousel has been recognized by both VAR and CRN Magazines as one of the top technology integrators in the US and we’ve been listed in the Inc. 500/5000 seven times. Carousel is headquartered in Exeter, RI, with over 1,000 employees working from offices in 30 locations across the US, including over 250 service technicians deployed across the country. For more information visit: http://www.carouselindustries.com

Mitsubishi, a long-time customer of leading multi-commodity trade solutions vendor Aspect, has further entrusted its trade, risk and operations business by increasing its contract value by 24%, and extending its long-standing commitment by several more years.

 

A recurring theme for Aspect over the past 4 years has been in its ability to secure new business when other companies in the space are struggling, and also to renew its existing clients at a rate of 94%. This is a testament in its ability to service its clients, and bring on new functionality based on client demand.

According to Aspect CEO Steve Hughes, "We don't lose customers every year, very few over the past couple of years. The main reason cited for a client not renewing has been due to their own financial struggles in a tough economy. That's out of our hands."

 

Mitsubishi has added users and is taking advantage of new and upgraded physical operations and reporting tools. Mitsubishi relies on AspectCTRM for its physical crude oil operation globally. A number of years ago, it deployed AspectCTRM to manage risk implicit with its increasing volume of buy/store/sell/ship trades of physical products, and associated trades of derivatives for hedging.

 

“The pattern of our business has evolved with the times over the past several years, as we've been forced to do more position taking in combination with hedges to mitigate risk. AspectCTRM helps us understand our exposure, and reduce risk as our trading volumes and administrative tasks increase. It lifts the burden through automation providing, integrated transparency across several geographical locations in real time," says Mitsubishi Risk Management Director Robert (Tony) Nunan.

 

"And the cloud model works for us. We started a few years ago with a one month trial, and by the end of the four weeks, our traders were inputting actual trades populated with current positions," Nunan added. "From there we've continued to grow with the solution, without the costs and infrastructure required from traditional trade and risk software."

 

About Aspect Enterprise Solutions

Aspect is a leading global provider of multi-commodity trade, risk and operations management applications 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, tables and mobile devices Aspect's solutions are available on desktop, tables and mobile devices and through its new Aspect Partner Program (APP).

Avere-Sponsored Cambridge Healthtech Survey Shows Data Storage Decision Makers Believe the Cloud will Pick up the Storage Slack

 

PITTSBURGH, Pa.Avere Systems, a leading provider of enterprise storage for the hybrid cloud, today released a report analyzing data from a recent survey conducted by Cambridge HealthTech about data storage in the life sciences industry. The survey revealed that 64 percent of respondents said their current storage capacity has the potential to slow down access to important research data; 75 percent also agreed that the use of cloud storage will rise.

 

“The survey findings confirm what Avere is hearing and seeing out in the field from our customers. Current IT infrastructures are slowing down the ability to make critical discoveries in the field of life sciences,” said Jeff Tabor, Senior Director of Product Management and Marketing, Avere Systems. “There is an intensely competitive research market in the life sciences field and any delay can potentially result in the loss of millions of dollars and years of research due to patents being awarded to competitors.”

 

In addition to examining the existing hardships, respondents were asked what the main concerns were when considering an object-based cloud storage solution. The number one response was integrating cloud storage with on-premises storage. The second and third were data migration, specifically on-ramping and off-ramping data from the cloud.

 

The life sciences industry processes massive amounts of data and it is vital to have access to it across all storage mediums. Integrating cloud storage with on-premises storage is a unique benefit of Avere Systems and eliminates this concern. With Avere’s FlashMove software, the data can move seamlessly from the cloud to on-prem. Since the introduction of the Virtual FXT, Avere is able to help customers connect the dots between the compute cloud, storage cloud, and on-premises storage without sacrificing performance, worrying about security, or adding a costly budget line.

Additional key findings from the survey include:

  • 85 percent of respondents believe that use of cloud compute will rise
  • Just under two-thirds consider IT budgets to be “inadequate” to support the rate of data growth
  • 72 percent said IT infrastructure limitations will create bottlenecks
  • Three-quarters run applications that require high performance data access

“Enhancing on-premises infrastructure and providing a smooth path to the storage and compute cloud to enable management of the entire environment as a single, holistic solution is key to providing datacenter flexibility,” said Tabor. “At Avere, we want to equip customers with better ways to leverage their data without worrying about backend issues or additional costs and let them focus on significant breakthroughs in the life sciences community.”

To learn more about the survey results, read the whitepaper here: http://lp.averesystems.com/it-infrastructure-report-for-research-environments

 

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 end the rising cost and complexity of data storage and compute via the freedom to store and access files anywhere in the cloud or on premises, without sacrificing the performance, availability, or security of enterprise 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.