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Volume 27, Issue 3

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Jon Seals

Organisational risk is in the eye of the beholder. What you see as being the main risks as an innovative small business serving the Melbourne metropolitan area may be very different from the point of view of a multinational corporation with projects all over the world. It’s wise however for both types of organisation to consider different perspectives. They can help reveal risks hitherto ignored or that lurk in the background, ready to increase in importance as conditions change. They also help enterprises to remain flexible in their outlook and more resilient to problems, whether inside or outside the business. Here are a few different takes you might consider.

...

http://www.opscentre.com.au/blog/what-are-your-top-ten-organisational-risks/

RoyalCourts03

London’s Royal Courts of Justice was the perfect setting for the Business Continuity Institute’s gala Global Awards dinner on November 6th at the conclusion of Day 1 of the BCM World Conference & Exposition.

The High Court was not in session, but the esteemed judges empanelled by The BCI rendered its verdicts – recognizing the outstanding achievements of Business Continuity professionals and organizations worldwide.

In the Consultancy & Individual categories:

Business Continuity Consultant of the Year was awarded to Saul Midler, LINUS.

Tom Clark, Liberty Mutual Insurance was named Business Continuity Manager of the Year.

And Standard Life PLC won the award for Business Continuity Team of the Year.

The award for Public Sector Manager of the Year award was presented to Alan Jones.

Andrew MacLeod, Needhams 1834 Ltd was named Business Continuity Newcomer of the Year.

In the Corporate categories:

The Business Continuity Innovation Award was presented to Vocal Ltd..

SunGard Availability Services was named Business Continuity Service Provider of the Year, and the Business Continuity Product Provider of the Year was presented to eBRP Solutions Network, Inc..

The award for Most Effective Recovery of the Year went to Etihad Etisalat – Mobily.

Finally, the public vote for the Industry Personality of the Year resulted in this year’s coveted honor being bestowed on Richard L. Arnold, recognizing his career-long contribution to the Business Continuity industry.

Congratulations to all of these worthy winners.  Each exemplifies the best in our industry – the highly skilled, the thought leaders, those who have leveraged their experience or demonstrated their acumen to have a positive impact both locally, and on the Business Continuity industry globally.  But simply being nominated for one of these awards should be considered an honor; only the select few are singled out as Regional Award winners and qualify as nominees for these Global awards

Here at eBRP Solutions we’re very, very proud of this honor.  Our award is testimony to the hard work of our designers and developers, and the incalculably valuable input of our customer worldwide.  We were thrilled to win this year’s Regional awards in North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.  We know that without the collaboration of our customers and other partners, eBRP and our flagship product- eBRP Suite – would not be what is today: recipient of the 2013 BCI Global Business Continuity Product of the Year Award.

The Business Continuity Institute (BCI) has named eBRP Solutions winner of the 2013 Global Business Continuity Product Provider of the Year award, for its flagship Business Continuity Management software eBRP Suite.

The BCI, eBRP

The award was presented at a gala Global Awards dinner concluding the open session of the 2013 BCM World Conference and Exposition on November 6th at the Royal Courts of Justice in London, UK.

The BCI Global awards are the culmination of a year-long program of Regional awards by BCI Chapters across the globe.  Winners of each of seven Regional award competitions were entered as nominees for the Global awards.  Earlier this year eBRP captured 4 Regional Business Continuity Product of the Year awards – honoring its flagship software eBRP Suite – in the North American, European, Middle Eastern and Asian BCI award competitions.

“2013 has been proven to be a banner year for eBRP,” according to Jim Mitchell, an eBRP Director. “Last year we were named the BCI’s North American Business Continuity Software of the Year, and this year we were delighted to pick up 4 additional Regional awards.  But the Global award is much more significant; it solidifies our standing a Thought Leaders in the Business Continuity industry.”

BCI Award

According to The BCI, the Global Awards “recognize the outstanding achievements of Business Continuity professionals and organizations worldwide and pay tribute to some of the finest talent in the industry.  Becoming a winner of a BCI Award gives international recognition for hard-earned achievements and is considered a great accolade within the BCM profession.”

“More than ten years of hard work has gone into the design and continuing development of eBRP Suite,” added eBRP Managing Director Ramesh Warrier.  “This award is shared with the entire eBRP Team – and with our Customers, whose collaboration has helped us evolve eBRP Suite to become a globally-acclaimed leader in the BCM industry.”

Want to find out what earned eBRP Suite the Global BC Product Award?  Simply click the Show Me button below, or the Request a Demo button to the left of this page – or email us directly at Info@eBRP.net, or phone us at  +1-888-480-3277 or (905) 677-0404.  We’ll be happy to show you how eBRP Suite can take your organization’s Business Continuity Management program to the next level.

Jennifer Craig Jennifer has been the cheerleader for everything eBRP – from designing & coordinating tradeshows, print ads, press releases and building eBRP’ s web presence. Strategic efforts with LinkedIn, Twitter, Word-press and Hoot Suite makes Jen the key social media marketing champion at eBRP. Her efforts have greatly enhanced eBRP’ s brand image globally and is credited for many of the accolades & awards in eBRP’ s trophy showcase.

Recently a group of executives, including myself, formed a new council whose aim is to increase disaster recovery preparedness and improve disaster recovery practices. The idea is to study current DR practices and develop DR standards and best practices for the industry to follow. Our initial research surprised us.

Initial results from the Disaster Recovery Preparedness online benchmark survey show the dismal state of DR preparedness of companies worldwide. Using a common grading system from A (the best) to F (the worst), 72% of survey participants, or nearly 3 out of 4 companies worldwide, are failing in terms of disaster readiness scoring ratings of either a D or F grade.  (You can take the test yourself at www.drbenchmark.org).

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http://drbenchmark.org/423/

As I discussed in a previous post, for small to midsized businesses, cloud backup services can simplify the process of backing up data and storing it offsite. Such services are available in many service levels and fit the budgets and data storage needs of a variety of businesses.

Before a company signs on with a managed service provider (MSP) for backup services, however, it should answer questions to head off potential issues:

  • What type of service does the company need?
  • Will there be latency issues?
  • What is the service provider’s availability?
  • How will security be handled?
  • Are there compliance policies that will need to be followed?
  • How will cloud backups mesh with current policies for data recovery and/or disaster recovery?

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http://www.itbusinessedge.com/blogs/smb-tech/smbs-when-considering-cloud-backup-service-ask-these-questions.html

Techworld — Enterprises should aim to create "business-defined data centers", according to IT analyst house Forrester Research.

In recent years, there has been a big push towards software-defined data centres, which aim to improve overall data centre performance by optimising the application layer and the hypervisor layer.

However, Forrester argues that the business-defined data centre cares about real services as opposed to less important applications.

Speaking at the annual Fujitsu Forum event in Munich today, Rachel Dines, senior analyst at Forrester, said: "Software-defined was a good step but it doesn't go far enough. We want to think about order to cash, payroll, supply chain management. Actual business processes instead of [applications like] ERP and CRM and HCM and a million other acronyms."

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http://www.cio.com/article/742743/Software_Defined_Data_Centers_Aren_t_Enough_Says_Forrester

WILLISTON, Vt. – It usually takes a disaster like Tropical Storm Irene – which knocked out roads, electricity, water, and communications – to remind us how important our infrastructure is to our communities and our way of life.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is urging Vermonters to become more aware of critical infrastructure and the need to protect it from disasters or other hazards.

President Barack Obama has declared November Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month, and officials say disasters like Irene and this year’s flooding events demonstrate the importance of expanding and reinforcing critical infrastructure security and resilience.

“The memory of Irene is still strong in Vermont,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Mark Landry, the head of FEMA’s Vermont operations. “Now is a good time to think about how important our transportation, communication, and utility infrastructure is and what we can do to protect it.”

Critical infrastructure is the systems that form the backbone of America’s national and economic security, including the electric grid, communications structures, transportation systems, and utilities like water and sewer, as well as the cyber-security of these systems.

“In this day and age, protecting critical infrastructure means more than safeguarding electric substations or bridges,” said Ross Nagy, Deputy Director of the Vermont Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security. “It also means ensuring that the control systems for these facilities are safe from cyber-attack or human error that could disrupt crucial networks.”

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security – FEMA’s parent agency – urges all Americans to do their part in ensuring critical infrastructure security and resilience by doing the following:

  • Learn about steps you can take to enhance security and resilience in your businesses and communities and how to handle certain events.
  • Make a plan with your families to keep your loved ones safe.
  • If you run a business, make a plan to keep your employees and community safe and enhance your ability to recover operations quickly. If you are an employee, ask your management whether there are plans in place and get a copy.
  • Report suspicious activity.

To learn more visit: http://www.dhs.gov/critical-infrastructure

On October 28, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the establishment of a new Emergency Disaster Protocol that insurers should expect to follow in the event of a future natural disaster. The protocol was communicated to insurers in the form of a circular letter on the same day. The new protocol includes many of the same measures that were put into place following Superstorm Sandy.

“During Superstorm Sandy these steps helped us speed up relief to New York families and businesses, and they will now become a standard part of our storm response arsenal,” said Governor Cuomo. “Insurance companies have a vital responsibility to promptly process claims for consumers hit by a natural disaster and this new emergency protocol will help make sure that they live up to that standard.”

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http://www.riskmanagementmonitor.com/new-york-institutes-new-disaster-protocol-for-insurers/

By Joshua Ottow, Assistant Principal, Yarmouth High School 

Yarmouth, Maine, Sep. 9, 2013 -- Assistant Principal Josh Ottow (center) talks about emergency preparedness with Yarmouth High School students on the opening day of school.

My name is Josh Ottow, and I am the assistant principal at Yarmouth High School in Maine. Yarmouth is a suburban town of approximately 8,000 residents and 1,400 students, with 500 students at our high school. I serve on a team of administrators that helps plan for security and emergency preparedness in our district. Currently, we have an emergency management protocol that applies to all schools, and has additional specific information and plans for individual schools.

We feel that Yarmouth High School is already a safe school, in that we foster a trusting and respectful school culture, where positive relationships between students and teachers are of the utmost importance. For example, we do not have locks on our lockers, bells between classes, or hall passes. It’s important to us to add measures that make our school more prepared for emergencies without losing that trusting culture.

This can be a challenge because, in the eyes, of students, things like locked doors, buzz-in systems, cameras in the parking lot, and lockdown drills can feel like we are assuming the worst in them, as opposed to trusting them to do the right thing.

At Yarmouth High School, the centerpiece of our emergency preparedness is having a strong Advisor/Advisee program. We believe in the innate strength and potential of a small group of students working together with an advising adult for four years. A student’s advisor is a person to rely on for advice, information, and genuine help and support in moments of distress.  Each teacher’s group of advisees comprises a unique combination of students, who might not otherwise have become friends. We see this as an opportunity for students to offer support and receive support from a group that will be a constant in students’ life for four years at Yarmouth High School. Because of our commitment to this program, we knew that it would be critical to our emergency preparedness implementation efforts.

Over the past year we spent considerable time in our Advisor/Advisee groups, talking about new emergency preparedness measures. The key is doing so in the context of keeping our school culture intact and making the school a safer place. One way we approach this is by employing discussion questions in our Advisor/Advisee groups to stimulate conversation, build understanding within our student body, and give students an opportunity to share their opinions and concerns. Example questions include:

  • What makes Yarmouth High School a secure place?
  • What makes the culture of Yarmouth High School unique?
  • Do you feel safe at Yarmouth High School?
  • Do you know what you would do in an emergency at school? Do you feel prepared?
  • What can we, as a school, do to ensure that we foster and maintain our positive, trusting, and respectful culture AND have a more secure school?

Teachers are advised to be sensitive to potential stress-level increase and emotional reactions surrounding these discussions, and are aware that student reactions may vary widely, and everyone’s opinion should be given its due. Our hope is that this conversation is honest and impactful for students as they wrestle with these tough issues.  We are also hoping that this conversation spills into “dinner time” talk with their parents at home. Parents are always invited to play a contributing role in these emergency preparedness plans via community-based forums, where they can express their opinions, make requests, and give suggestions.

Another method that we use to address emergency preparedness is collecting direct feedback from students. For example, we ask students (through their Advisor/Advisee groups) for feedback on our response plan and suggestions for future protocols each time we hold a lockdown drill. Advisors are given a detailed, play-by-play lockdown drill guide that they go over with their advisees after each drill. Sometimes, we get great suggestions from the students that we may not have thought about otherwise.

For example, during a recent lockdown drill we asked students to hand over their phones to their teacher. One student asked his Advisor why we did that, and he was told that one reason was to minimize light and noise coming from the classroom.  In response, he suggested that teachers should also close the lids of their laptops, because his teacher had his laptop open during the lockdown and it was emitting light. This was not something we had specified in the plan and may not have thought to add if this student hadn’t brought it up. Advisors have access to a shared online document where they can note these suggestions, and then we talk about the responses and potentially revising our plans at a school-wide faculty meeting.

Our emergency preparedness efforts in the past several months, from new plans and new equipment to authentic and honest discussions amongst students and staff, have shown me that involving students and being open with them about how preparedness measures could impact school culture is the best way to ensure a safe and positive school.

Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this blog post do not necessarily represent the official views of FEMA, the Department of Homeland Security, or the United States Government. We are providing links to third party sites and organizations for your reference. FEMA does not endorse any non-government entities, organizations or services.

OTTAWA, Canada – Diablo Technologies and 60East Technologies today announced that they have entered into a strategic alliance to deliver the world’s most advanced, low-latency electronic trading platform.  Both companies will partner closely to create a joint solution and align product roadmaps designed to leverage Diablo’s Memory Channel Storage™ (MCS™) architecture and the capabilities of the AMPS messaging platform from 60East Technologies®.  

By combining ultra-low latency, high transaction flash memory based MCS devices with the world’s fastest high-volume low-latency message streaming database, Diablo and 60East deliver on the promise of extreme performance and efficiency, set to disrupt the financial services sector.  Diablo’s Co-founder and Vice President of Strategic Customer Engineering, Franco Forlini and 60East’s Chief Executive Officer, Jeffrey M. Birnbaum will share details behind the emerging partnership during their “drill down” workshop at the Low-Latency Summit Conference & Exhibition at Convene in New York November 12 at 4 p.m. EST. 

Diablo’s MCS architecture connects NAND flash directly to the CPU through the server’s memory bus, enabling linear scalability in performance at extremely low-latencies for the most demanding enterprise applications.  By placing high-capacity flash directly onto these massively parallel structures, MCS breaks the final latency and IOPS paradigm inherent to existing NAND-based storage solutions.  When combined with 60East’s AMPS messaging platform, the two technologies are able to deliver more than four times as much throughput and an order of magnitude of lower latency in the 99.9th percentile.  

Diablo’s MCS technology will be leveraged in SanDisk’s ULLtraDIMMTM SSD, and will be brought to market by SanDisk as part of an exclusive relationship between the two companies.  

“We’re always looking for the lowest-latency, highest-throughput storage devices and we’re excited by the results we’ve seen from running Diablo MCS in our lab and delivering performance that stays well ahead of the demands of our most aggressive customers,” said Birnbaum. 

“We chose to work with 60East because of their reputation for success in mission-critical, high performance computing.  The synergy between Diablo and 60East is amplified by our combined commitment to providing innovative, leading-edge solutions that can be leveraged across the entire enterprise,” said Riccardo Badalone, Co-founder and CEO of Diablo Technologies.  “Our dynamic partnership integrates the two-best-in-class technologies to deliver a joint platform built for the most demanding, low latency applications.” 

Diablo and 60East recently evaluated MCS performance on the AMPS storage engine to demonstrate low latency and low jitter that drastically surpass the leading PCIe-based technologies.  60East ran its standard I/O profiling tool and workload simulator to reveal transaction volumes on the order of millions of messages per second, with predictable latency and throughput.  A white paper detailing the testing and results is available for download at http://www.diablo-technologies.com/files/AMPSMCSInfoSheet-HQ%20ReExport.pdf

Forlini and Birnbaum will join forces to share their industry expertise during the “Extreme Messaging Performance with MCS and AMPS” presentation at the Low-Latency Summit Conference & Exhibition at Convene in New York November 12 at 4 p.m. EST.  This technical workshop goes in-depth with the creators of these architectures to detail the innovative blending of hardware and software that will set a new industry standard in trading technology.  Diablo and 60East will also be exhibiting their leading-edge solutions in Booth 102.  Additional information about the event is available at: http://low-latency.com/event/low-latency-summit-2013-nyc-fall

   https://twitter.com/DiabloTechInc 
   https://www.facebook.com/pages/Diablo-Technologies/369582183128064 

About Diablo Technologies
Founded in 2003, Diablo is at the forefront of developing breakthrough technologies to set the standard for next-generation enterprise computing. Diablo’s Memory Channel Storage solution combines innovative software and hardware architectures with Non-Volatile Memory to introduce a new and disruptive generation of Solid State Storage for data-intensive applications. 
The Diablo executive leadership team has been successfully delivering product solutions that enhance the performance and capability of memory system designs for over ten years.  Leveraging knowledge from the past to address the future, Diablo Technologies now turns its focus to MCS, an award-winning and disruptive platform set to revolutionize the storage enterprise market.

The Diablo team has decades of experience in system architecture, chip-set design and software development at companies including Nortel Networks, AMD, SEGA, ATI, Matrox Graphics, Goal Semiconductor, BroadTel Communications, ENQ Semiconductor, IceFyre Semiconductor, Mosaid Technologies and Huawei.

Website: http://www.diablo-technologies.com/


About 60East Technologies

60East Technologies was founded in 2010 by a world-class tandem of system programming experts with a proven track record of delivering systems to the most demanding customers. The team’s experience and expertise building high performance systems over the past twenty years, has led to the development of a technology, AMPS, that will revolutionize how real-time messaging is used to build modern applications that scale into the future. 60East Technologies is committed to building the fastest real-time streaming database software and helping application developers deliver solutions that outperform their peers.