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Volume 28, Issue 1

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Jon Seals

An article on the NJ.com site hededcq Boardwalk's unique aspects challenge firefighters reminds that it pays to invite emergency service/public safety personnel – EMTs, fire, police – to participate in risk management planning.

In some instances, e.g., where HAZMAT is on site, this interface with public safety departments may be mandated by local law. In all cases, it is just (a) good business practice, (b) common sense, or (c), both. Failure to include emergency services is foolish and can be costly.

Inviting public safety personnel to visit facilities benefits the organization both in the immediate term and in the event of an “incident.”

...

http://johnglennmbci.blogspot.com/2013/10/erm-bc-coop-it-pays-to-invite-emergency.html

Wednesday, 02 October 2013 17:00

ERP Systems Provide Visibility Into Food Safety

As food production gets increasingly complicated, food manufacturers often struggle to track products from raw materials to packaged goods – and, in the event of a recall, from packaged goods to raw materials. Even those with automated quality systems often find it hard to integrate supply chain data. That's why some food makers are turning to specialized ERP systems.

 

CIO — Love & Quiches Desserts, based in Freeport, N.Y., had different priorities than the typical enterprise resource planning (ERP) customer.

ERP buyers often look at capabilities such as sales, procurement and financials. Love & Quiches focused on another attribute when it replaced its aging ERP system in 2012: The capability to track its treats in detail through the various stages of manufacturing.

"We never worried about the [general ledger] platform, but from the standpoint of being able to document full traceability," Love & Quiches CFO Corey Aronin says.

...

http://www.cio.com/article/740734/ERP_Systems_Provide_Visibility_Into_Food_Safety_

Did you know that the ‘uncrackable’ 128-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES-128) in fact turns out to be crackable? Granted, it would currently take 2 billion years using an enormous number (like a trillion) of computers. But before you heave a sigh of relief on behalf of your organisation’s information, think again. That’s the situation when nobody knows the encryption key you are using. What would the impact be on your business continuity if your key was known by other people who also were prepared to pass that information on to perfect strangers? If you are using services such as encrypted cloud data storage or online password managers, it may be time to find out more.

...

http://www.opscentre.com.au/blog/encryption-alone-wont-ensure-business-continuity-and-heres-why/

Mixed signals about the cloud and security abound. A private cloud is more secure than a public cloud, for instance, but most experts would advise against storing critical data in any type of cloud format. And like anything to do with data security, the cloud will always bring risk—particularly when you have to trust a third party (the cloud host) to protect your data.

Many of us use cloud services like Dropbox or Google Docs because they make basic file sharing simple and they are free. But when I use these services, I also recognize that security is spotty. However, I also don’t have to worry about a company network, just my own. Many companies have policies in place to protect their networks from security issues that can crop up with use of these free, consumer-driven cloud services. According to a new survey from SafeNet Labs, however, too many people, including top executives, aren’t following their company’s cloud policies.

Worse is that while employees, including the C-level executives, understand the risk in using cloud services, too many simply don’t care. In fact, executives may be the worst offenders. Some of the key points of the Cloud App Usage vs Data Privacy Survey include:

...

http://www.itbusinessedge.com/blogs/data-security/study-shows-business-professionals-dont-worry-enough-about-cloud-security.html

Wednesday, 02 October 2013 15:59

CTOs, Don't Neglect the C-Suite

Chief technology officers can't be all about technology. Building trust with the rest of the C-suite should be a top goal.

 

Computerworld — As a chief technology officer, you're good at technology; the C-suite wouldn't have hired you without that. But you can't be all about technology. It's even more important to understand the dynamics -- and oftentimes the politics -- of the C-suite. It's your No. 1 client.

Treat your C-suite colleagues as internal ambassadors. While they're all expected to be aligned with the organization's strategic goals, each of them represents a department that has its own vision, responsibilities, strengths and plans for success. The CTO has to be able to hear and understand all of those points of view and develop trusting relationships with everyone else in the C-suite. Why? Because your C-suite colleagues have the power to advocate on your behalf. And how do you build trust? These things all help:

...

 

Wednesday, 02 October 2013 15:57

4 Ways CIOs Can to Respond to a Service Outage

Nasdaq and Intermedia are among the latest firms to suffer lengthy – and public – service outages. Eventually, the same thing will happen to you. Here are four key lessons IT leaders can learn from others' mistakes.

 

CIO — Clearly, it hasn't been a good few weeks for Nasdaq. First, trading on the exchange halted for more than three hours on Aug. 22. Nasdaq's brief post-mortem statement blames a software bug and a backup system that failed to actually activate when a fault was detected. However, Reuters reports that a person familiar with what happened says connection problems with NYSE Euronext's Arca Exchange triggered the entire event.

Adding insult to injury, Nasdaq suffered a six-minute outage on Wednesday, Sept. 4. Though it involved the same system that was the culprit of the larger outage, a Nasdaq statement says "hardware memory failure in a back-end server" caused this outage.

...

http://www.cio.com/article/740602/4_Ways_CIOs_Can_to_Respond_to_a_Service_Outage

Improving the data center to keep up with advancing technologies has been the chief, perennial responsibility of CIOs over the years. These days, however, the job has taken on a new twist as new questions arise: Is the data center the best platform to boost enterprise productivity? Do we need a data center at all anymore?

Most large organizations seem to be solidly in the owned-and-operated camp when it comes to the data center, but the farther into the SMB space we go, the certainty starts to waiver. Clearly, the reliance on traditional physical-layer infrastructure is under serious assault across the board. According to MarketsandMarkets, spending on software-defined data center (SDDC) technology will jump from about $400 million today to $5.41 billion by 2018, reflecting the enterprise’s desire to not only improve operational capabilities but to integrate in-house infrastructure with the broader cloud ecosystem.

...

http://www.itbusinessedge.com/blogs/infrastructure/keep-upgrading-your-data-center-no-matter-where-the-cloud-takes-you.html

LINCROFT, N.J. – When a major disaster strikes, the first steps agencies take are health and safety related – controlling damage, minimizing casualties, finding shelter for displaced victims.

When the initial burst of activity has subsided, the focus changes to helping affected people and businesses get vital information on recovery plans and financial assistance. Helping people cope with the aftermath of a disaster and teaching them how to prepare for future emergencies also becomes a priority.Senior couple standing at a table talking with two gentlemen from Mitigation who are pointing to a chart

The Federal Emergency Management Agency collaborated with several other government agencies, public and private organizations and area businesses to educate New Jersey residents after Superstorm Sandy.

FEMA also supported Church World Service’s Recovery Tools and Training workshops for volunteer groups helping with post-Sandy recovery. More than 400 people attended a January session to obtain background information, resources and national contacts to assist in long-term recovery.

The Community Education and Outreach section of FEMA’s Mitigation Branch promoted effective hazard mitigation ideas and techniques through community education, outreach, training and coordination with public and private sectors. CEO specialists worked with other branches of FEMA as well as other government agencies and private organizations. Programs based around the mantra of “rebuilding stronger, safer and smarter” made contact with nearly 61,000 people in the months following the storm.

FEMA representatives from the Private Sector and Hazard Mitigation programs, along with officials from the Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, attended three Lakewood BlueClaws baseball games in 2013, collecting donated preparedness supplies and distributing informational materials to affected residents.

Man looking at table filled with mitigation papers and pamphlets. FEMA Mitigation man standing waiting to answer questions. Rebuild to Last poster displayed in foregroundOn July 27, FEMA outreach specialists were present at 13 Home Depot locations in New Jersey, including several in communities severely impacted by Sandy, as part of the
store’s hurricane preparedness workshops held on the East Coast. They distributed information on the National Flood Insurance Program, disaster preparedness and mitigation.

FEMA Private Sector specialists took part in the Sam’s Club Emergency Preparedness Expo at the store’s Edison, N.J., location on Aug. 27. The expo hosted government agencies from all levels and private organizations showcasing the assistance they can grant to individuals and small businesses. Representatives from Mitigation were at the
New Jersey Meadowlands State Fair distributing information.

FEMA Corps Launches School Programs

Members of FEMA Corps, a division of AmeriCorps created by FEMA and AmeriCorps’ National Civilian Community Corps, implemented its FEMA for Male FEMA Corps member crouched down talking with eight young children who sit and listen intently while Flat Stanley and Flat Stella stand at the ready.

Kids program in New Jersey in April 2013. In April and May, FEMA for Kids visited 21 schools and community-based programs in areas affected by Superstorm Sandy, and more than 5,000 elementary and middle school children attended the events. The interactive programs teach children how to prepare for and respond to disasters, as well as allowing them to express their concerns about the effect Superstorm Sandy has had on their lives and families. The website www.ready.gov/kids has FEMA for Kids program information for children, parents and educators. Corps members also created FEMA Connect, a similar program for high school students. It had more than 600 participants in New Jersey. The group recruits people ages 18-24 to assist with disaster response, recovery operations and community outreach.

Corps members also prepared and edited the New Jersey Resource Guide, which contains nearly 625 profiles of federal programs, private foundations and corporate giving programs.

“These kind of activities are very good because we get a lot of exposure and people know that we are here for them and that we are in their neighborhood, that we're doing the same things they are doing,” FEMA mitigation specialist Ofelia Garayua said.

Video-links: Hurricane Preparedness Workshop (Home Depot), FEMA Connect, Rutgers Day Benefits Sandy Relief Fund and Sam’s Club Preparedness Expo for Businesses

Next, the One Year Later series examines the impact of Superstorm Sandy on New Jersey schools.

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.

Follow FEMA online at www.fema.gov/blog, www.twitter.com/fema, www.facebook.com/fema, and www.youtube.com/fema. Also, follow Administrator Craig Fugate's activities at www.twitter.com/craigatfema.

 

http://www.fema.gov/news-release/2013/09/30/one-year-later-fema-partners-emphasize-education-and-outreach

No excuse for delaying solid-state implementations

SAN JOSE, Calif. – While many enterprises have expressed interest in deploying solid-state storage solutions, the decision to do so is often complicated when faced with the cacophony of metrics by vendors touting their particular strength while downplaying the parameters in which they lack, say experts at Skyera Inc., founded by an executive and engineering team with unsurpassed backgrounds in the solid-state, storage and networking arenas.  

To help make the decision as to whether solid-state is an appropriate choice for virtually all of an enterprise’s storage needs, Skyera has proposed a system based on key storage selection criteria – Size, Weight and Power, Performance, Plug-and-Play and Price – or SWaP4. Based on a formula pioneered by the U.S. military to reduce the size, weight, and power—aka SWaP—of its various systems, SWaP4 delivers a reliable way to determine which flash solution is truly the most advantageous.

By evaluating storage purchasing criteria based on multiple factors – operating cost drivers, performance requirements, ease of deployment and acquisition costs – rather than simply one that a vendor may choose to emphasize, companies are able to make an apples-to-apples comparison of various solutions to help determine the best approach to storage for their particular organization’s needs.

“We hear a lot of excuses from companies about why they aren’t ready to implement solid-state storage, with the most-frequently cited excuse being confused as to what the technology can actually do for them due to vendors overemphasizing one particular facet while downplaying the importance of several others,” said Frankie Roohparvar, COO of Skyera.  “By introducing the SWaP4 criteria, we are empowering enterprises with a valuable tool to alleviate the confusion they may be facing, with key metrics that all vendors should be able to supply.  By thoroughly understanding how each solution stacks up against competitive offerings, customers will no longer be in the dark as to what specific solid-state technologies provide.”

Skyera has changed the enterprise storage dynamic significantly with its groundbreaking new storage platform that combines affordability and performance in the only viable all-Flash array to break the price barrier for mainstream enterprise storage.  

SWaP4 metrics for the skyHawk 44TB capacity solution are:
•	Size 0.5 rack units
•	Weight 20 lbs.
•	Power 350 watts
•	Performance 500,000 IOPS
•	Plug-and-Play 10 minutes to deploy
•	Price $2.99 per GB

Companies looking to “SWaP” their current storage for enterprise solid-state storage can compare the criteria of the skyHawk 44TB capacity solution with theirs.

After evaluating the solutions, interested parties looking to move beyond traditional storage systems into the new era of storage can contact Skyera for more information about “SWaP”ping their existing storage systems for a disruptive solid-date storage system that delivers unparalleled performance, speed and capacity while minimizing the cost of power, consumption and floor space.

Follow Skyera:   
http://www.twitter.com/skyerainc
http://www.facebook.com/skyerainc
http://www.youtube.com/skyerainc

About Skyera
Skyera Inc. is a disruptive provider of enterprise solid-state storage systems designed to enable a large class of applications with extraordinarily high performance, exceptionally lower power consumption and cost effectiveness relative to existing enterprise storage systems. Founded by the executives who previously developed the world's most-advanced flash memory controller, Skyera is backed by key technology and financial partnerships designed to position it at the forefront of the hyper growth in the solid-state storage sector. The company was chosen by Flash Memory Summit as a Best of Show award winner for 2012 in the category of Most Innovative Flash Memory Enterprise Business Application. For more information about the company, visit skyera.com.

NEWARK, Calif. – Tegile Systems, the leading provider of flash driven storage arrays for virtualized server and virtual desktop environments, today announced Broadcast Interactive Media has implemented a Tegile Zebi hybrid array after moving to a virtualized environment.
Broadcast Interactive Media is a broad range provider of ad optimization and data services to some of the country’s largest advertisers and broadcasters, including Comcast and DirecTV, and hundreds of TV stations and online media outlets.
The company’s facility offers a variety of services, including its Media Star suite of program scheduling services and its TitanTV online program guide for over-the- air, cable and satellite listings used by more than 1,000 websites. If you’ve ever used on an online program guide, there is a very good chance that it’s powered by TitanTV.

BIM’s proprietary applications are hosted on servers running Windows on what IT manager Tom Trujillo calls ‘aging technology.’ In many cases, BIM is using servers running older operating systems, including Windows Server 2000 and 2003.  “We needed a way to keep the older tech alive since the OS and some applications aren’t supported on new tech.”

The solution for Trujillo was to virtualize its 51 physical servers with VMware, enabling them to upgrade to new technology when possible, while maintaining the older technology. 

“We rely on our data to make our money. The fact that so many municipalities were trusting Tegile was more than enough for me.”  

BIM purchased a Tegile Zebi HA2100 high-availability hybrid array with 25TB capacity connected in an iSCSI SAN connected to the servers and VMs via a Gigabit Ethernet switch. The Zebi array is storing all of the VM data and the VMware host is replicating the servers so they can maintain availability with the HA storage array.   

A Tegile technician installed the Zebi HA2100 and then spent an hour with Trujillo.
“I understood everything that this piece of hardware and the software does in under an hour, and it was an easy hour,” said Trujillo. “I was like a kid at Christmas, it was incredible to me. When they say a user-friendly interface, this really is a user-friendly interface.”

Trujillo says the Zebi array has performed exactly as predicted with one exception: he wasn’t prepared for the effectiveness of Tegile’s in-line compression and data deduplication technology, shrinking his storage load for dozens of servers and hundreds of virtual machines down from 21TB down to less than 7TB.

“I’m surprised at the amount of space that it doesn’t use. I would have thought for sure I would have filled this thing up with everything I have,” said Trujillo.  “I still have 60% of my Zebi free. I’m trying to figure out how I can fill that space. I’ve still got terabytes upon terabytes of space available to me. I know that I would have filled those up by now with the other products I was looking at.”
 
About Tegile Systems
Tegile Systems is pioneering a new generation of flash driven enterprise storage arrays that balance performance, capacity, features and price for virtualization, file services and database applications. With Tegile’s Zebi hybrid storage arrays, the company is redefining the traditional approach to storage by providing a family of arrays that is significantly faster than disk-based arrays and significantly less expensive than all flash arrays.

Tegile’s patented MASS technology accelerates the Zebi’s performance and enables on-the-fly de-duplication and compression of data so each Zebi has a usable capacity far greater than its raw capacity. Tegile’s award-winning solutions enable customers to better address the requirements of server virtualization, virtual desktop integration and database integration than other offerings. Featuring both NAS and SAN connectivity, Tegile arrays are easy-to-use, fully redundant, and highly scalable. They come complete with built-in snapshot, replication, near-instant recovery, onsite or offsite failover, and virtualization management features. Additional information is available at www.tegile.com. Twitter @tegile.