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Summer Journal

Volume 29, Issue 3

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Jon Seals

Mirantis Unlocked Validation Brings Predictive Flash to the Cloud

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Nimble Storage (NYSE: NMBL), the leader in predictive flash storage, today announced an expansion of its commitment to the cloud by achieving the Mirantis Unlocked validation for its Nimble Cinder Driver, providing easy-to-deploy, scalable and highly available storage options for customers using OpenStack infrastructure with the Nimble Predictive Flash platform.

Integration of the Nimble Cinder Driver with Mirantis OpenStack allows customers to deploy OpenStack clouds with fast and reliable access to data. The combination of Mirantis OpenStack and the Nimble Predictive Flash platform delivers the foundation for enterprise customers to radically simplify cloud infrastructure deployments while meeting the demands of a dynamic and expanding user base. The Nimble Predictive Flash platform combines the power of InfoSight Predictive Analytics with a Unified Flash Fabric consolidation architecture to deliver flash performance and unparalleled availability by predicting and preventing issues.

"We are proud to be validated by Mirantis, a forerunner in the OpenStack community that enables customers to transition seamlessly to a dynamic storage infrastructure," said Dan Leary, vice president of corporate development, solutions and alliances, Nimble Storage. "Nimble's validation with Mirantis OpenStack showcases our dedication to cloud builders and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers, and ensures that customers' deployment of Nimble on OpenStack infrastructure is simple and frictionless."

Cloud, SaaS providers and enterprises deploying Nimble and Mirantis can create production-grade OpenStack clouds with robust, high-performance Nimble storage systems, simplifying cloud deployments through standardized software packages. In addition to absolute performance, benefits for customers include simplified development and testing to production rollout, non-stop availability to exceed cloud service level agreements and agility to enable their SaaS models with ease.

"Storage management has become more complex as enterprises embrace the cloud, and customers require that their storage solutions not only have high performance, availability and ease-of-use, but also offer tools to support their cloud transition," said Kamesh Pemmaraju, vice president of Product Marketing, Mirantis. "Validating the Nimble Predictive Flash platform on Mirantis OpenStack ensures that customers can take advantage of flash-optimized architecture and predictive analytics with OpenStack, easing their shift to next-generation cloud platforms."

For more information on Nimble's Predictive Flash Platform and certifications, please visit www.nimblestorage.com.

Nimble Storage Resources

About Nimble Storage
Nimble Storage (NYSE: NMBL) is the leader in predictive flash storage solutions. Nimble offers a Predictive Flash platform that combines flash performance with predictive analytics to predict and prevent barriers to data velocity caused by complex IT infrastructure. Nimble customers experience absolute performance, non-stop availability and cloud-like agility that accelerate critical business processes. More than 8,100 enterprises, governments, and service providers have deployed the Nimble Predictive Flash Platform across more than 50 countries. For more information visit www.nimblestorage.com and follow us on Twitter: @nimblestorage.

Nimble Storage, the Nimble Storage logo, CASL, InfoSight, SmartStack, Timeless Storage, Data Velocity Delivered, Unified Flash Fabric and NimbleConnect are trademarks or registered trademarks of Nimble Storage, Inc. Other trade names or words used in this document are the properties of their respective owners.

Fortinet vSecurity Virtual Network Function to Enable Global Enterprises to Deploy Adaptive, Intelligent Virtualized Network Security

SUNNYVALE, Calif. – Fortinet® (NASDAQ: FTNT), the global leader in high-performance cybersecurity solutions, today announced that it has been selected as a vSecurity technology partner as part of Verizon Enterprise Solutions' new Virtual Network Services.

  • The Fortinet Security Fabric will provide enterprise customers of Verizon Virtual Network Services with open, adaptive virtual security and actionable threat intelligence, turning network protection into a driver of business insight and agility.
  • A broad range of security features within the FortiGate virtual network function (VNF), including enterprise firewalls, FortiManager single pane of glass management, integrated threat intelligence from FortiGuard Labs, data loss prevention, IP security, and intrusion detection system will enable enterprises to deploy advanced software-defined networking (SDN) security functions to protect all points in their network.

Shawn Hakl, vice president of networking and innovation, Verizon
"As enterprise networks transition to virtualized models and the cyber attack surface gets increasingly complex, having integrated security that can seamlessly scale and adapt along with business requirements is paramount. The integration of Fortinet as one of our initial vSecurity technology partners will provide our customers with an industry-leading option to quickly deploy virtual security that can allow them to realize the business potential of an agile network."

Digitization of Business Requires Adaptive, Secure Networks at Scale
The increasing complexity of the network from IoT to cloud-based, mission-critical applications, coupled with the growing sophistication of cyber threats makes network security across the distributed enterprise a top business priority. The challenge is that traditional enterprise IT infrastructure struggles to keep pace with the growth of digital business dependence, requiring an on-demand, software-defined approach to network services and security.

As part of Verizon's Virtual Network Services, Fortinet will provide plug-and-play vSecurity VNFs so businesses can deploy security network functions in software. With a broad range of advanced virtual network security features offered, including Fortinet FortiGate enterprise firewalls, advanced threat intelligence, global policy controls, and internal segmentation to protect mission-critical data from breaches, Fortinet vSecurity will deliver all the performance of traditional network security in virtualized solutions.

Fortinet's expansion of its longstanding relationship with Verizon demonstrates the companies' shared commitment to drive business agility through network security solutions that seamlessly adapt and scale, simplify operations and help improve total cost of ownership.

Verizon's new services can be delivered across public, private and wireless networks from Verizon or other service providers, or a combination of multiple providers across multiple networks. For more information, visit here.

Supporting Quote
"From distributed business locations to more and more cloud-based mission critical applications, the cyber attack surface and the sophistication of threats on enterprise networks are at an all time high. As such, it is critical that businesses have the ability to spin up security resources and global policies as needed so they can free up resources to focus on business objectives. Building on our longstanding relationship with Verizon, Fortinet will deliver the on-demand security needed today for distributed enterprises to take their business to the next level, while helping control costs and drive business agility through virtualized offerings."
- Matt Pley, vice president, Carrier and Service Provider, Fortinet

Additional Resources

About Fortinet
Fortinet (NASDAQ: FTNT) secures the largest enterprise, service provider, and government organizations around the world. Fortinet empowers its customers with intelligent, seamless protection across the expanding attack surface and the power to take on ever-increasing performance requirements of the borderless network -- today and into the future. Only the Fortinet Security Fabric architecture can deliver security without compromise to address the most critical security challenges, whether in networked, application, cloud or mobile environments. More than 270,000 customers worldwide trust Fortinet to protect their businesses. Learn more at http://www.fortinet.com, the Fortinet Blog, or FortiGuard Labs.

Copyright © 2016 Fortinet, Inc. All rights reserved. The symbols ® and ™ denote respectively federally registered trademarks and unregistered trademarks of Fortinet, Inc., its subsidiaries and affiliates. Fortinet's trademarks include, but are not limited to, the following: Fortinet, FortiGate, FortiGuard, FortiManager, FortiMail, FortiClient, FortiCare, FortiCloud, FortiAnalyzer, FortiReporter, FortiOS, FortiASIC, FortiWiFi, FortiSwitch, FortiVoIP, FortiBIOS, FortiLog, FortiResponse, FortiCarrier, FortiScan, FortiAP, FortiDB, FortiVoice and FortiWeb. Other trademarks belong to their respective owners. Fortinet has not independently verified statements or certifications herein attributed to third parties and Fortinet does not independently endorse such statements. Notwithstanding anything to the contrary herein, nothing herein constitutes a warranty, guarantee, binding specification or other binding commitment by Fortinet, and performance and other specification information herein may be unique to certain environments. This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve uncertainties and assumptions. Changes of circumstances, product release delays, or other risks as stated in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, located at www.sec.gov, may cause results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in this press release. If the uncertainties materialize or the assumptions prove incorrect, results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements and assumptions. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. Fortinet assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements, and expressly disclaims any obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

 

SUNNYVALE, Calif. –
As some software vendors benefit and others fail to keep up, a market shake up is possible

 

MAIDENHEAD, UK – The enterprise software marketplace is undergoing a massive transformation as the pricing and licensing models dictating how software is bought and sold evolve. Fueled in part by shifts in customer demand and in part by rapidly changing technology, some software application vendors are poised to reap windfall profits from the new software pricing and licensing models emerging, while others risk being left behind. This is the conclusion of a new report published by Software Monetization expert, Flexera Software. Among the report’s findings:

  • Perpetual Decline: Only 43 percent of software vendors say perpetual software licenses contribute to half or more of their revenues. Historically, the perpetual license was the dominant licensing model used by most software vendors.
  • Shifting Foundations: 70 percent of software vendors will change their pricing and licensing models within the next two years. The reasons? To generate more revenues, be more competitive and improve customer relations.
  • No Installation Required: 36 percent of software vendors say that less than half of their applications are delivered as traditional installed software.
  • Change Ready: Within the next two years software vendors plan on changing their licensing policies to accommodate new technologies like:
    • Cloud (49 Percent)
    • SaaS (46 percent)
    • Virtualisation (47 percent)
    • Mobile Platforms (55 percent)
  • Bliss or Ignorance? 73 percent of vendors boast their pricing and licensing policies are effective. Yet despite this confidence, 51 percent of those surveyed admitted they don’t track customer usage, 45 percent don’t audit customer usage, 55 percent don’t have technology in place to track customer usage of their products, and 42 percent say their customers have challenges determining which software products they’re entitled to use.

“Enterprises are rapidly redefining how they want to license and pay for business software. Moreover, technology is shifting so rapidly it is rendering old pricing and licensing models obsolete,” said R “Ray" Wang, Principal Analyst & Founder at Constellation Research. “Smart software producers are being proactive, viewing this dramatic shift as an opportunity to offer more flexible monetisation models, capture market share and new revenue streams. Software vendors that fail to act risk being left behind.”

 

“The report illustrates the fluidity of the software market place and the rapidly changing customer preferences dictating how software is bought and sold,” said Steve Schmidt, Vice President of Corporate Development at Flexera Software. “To thrive in this environment software vendors must adopt an agile Software Monetisation strategy and implement automation that flexibly supports multiple software pricing and licensing models. As the data suggests, many vendors are not yet ‘change-ready,’ and therefore are at risk.”

 

Resources:

Access the report: Software Licensing 2016: Seismic Shifts – Shaky Foundations Report

Learn more about Flexera Software’s:

Related Flexera Software Webinars

Related Flexera Software White Papers

 

About this Report

The 2016 Key Trends in Software Pricing and Licensing survey was conducted by Flexera Software. This annual research project looks at software licensing, pricing and enforcement trends and best practices. The survey reaches out to executives at software application producers (software vendors and intelligent device manufacturers) and enterprises who use and manage software and devices. Now in its tenth year, the survey is made available to the industry at large each year.

 

About Flexera Software

Flexera Software helps application producers and enterprises increase application usage and the value they derive from their software. Our software licensing, compliance and installation solutions are essential to ensure continuous licensing compliance, optimized software investments and to future-proof businesses against the risks and costs of constantly changing technology. Over 80,000 customers turn to Flexera Software as a trusted and neutral source for the knowledge and expertise we have gained as the marketplace leader in licensing, installation and compliance for over 20 years and for the automation and intelligence designed into our products. For more information, please go to: www.flexerasoftware.com.

Closing Attackers' "Window of Opportunity" Is Top Priority for Organizations; Cisco Leads Industry in Reducing Time to Detection With New 13-Hour Low

SAN JOSE, Calif. – The Cisco® (NASDAQ: CSCO) 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report (MCR) finds that organizations are unprepared for future strains of more sophisticated ransomware. Fragile infrastructure, poor network hygiene, and slow detection rates are providing ample time and air cover for adversaries to operate. According to the report's findings, the struggle to constrain the operational space of attackers is the biggest challenge facing businesses and threatens the underlying foundation required for digital transformation. Other key findings in the MCR include adversaries expanding their focus to server-side attacks, evolving attack methods and increasing use of encryption to mask activity.

So far in 2016, ransomware has become the most profitable malware type in history. Cisco expects to see this trend continue with even more destructive ransomware that can spread by itself and hold entire networks, and therefore companies, hostage. New modular strains of ransomware will be able to quickly switch tactics to maximize efficiency. For example, future ransomware attacks will evade detection by being able to limit CPU usage and refrain from command-and-control actions. These new ransomware strains will spread faster and self-replicate within organizations before coordinating ransom activities.

Visibility across the network and endpoints remains a primary challenge. On average, organizations take up to 200 days to identify new threats. Cisco's median time to detection (TTD) continues to outpace the industry, hitting a new low of approximately 13 hours to detect previously unknown compromises for the six months ending in April 2016. This result is down from 17.5 hours for the period ending in October 2015. Faster time to detection of threats is critical to constrain attackers' operational space and minimize damage from intrusions. This figure is based on opt-in security telemetry gathered from Cisco security products deployed worldwide.

As attackers innovate, many defenders continue to struggle with maintaining the security of their devices and systems. Unsupported and unpatched systems create additional opportunities for attackers to easily gain access, remain undetected, and maximize damage and profits. The Cisco 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report shows that this challenge persists on a global scale. While organizations in critical industries such as healthcare have experienced a significant uptick in attacks over the past several months, the report's findings indicate that all vertical markets and global regions are being targeted. Clubs and organizations, charities and non-governmental organization (NGOs), and electronics businesses have all experienced an increase in attacks in the first half of 2016. On the world stage, geopolitical concerns include regulatory complexity and contradictory cybersecurity policies by country. The need to control or access data may limit and conflict with international commerce in a sophisticated threat landscape.

Attackers Operating Unconstrained
For attackers, more time to operate undetected results in more profits. In the first half of 2016, Cisco reports, attacker profits have skyrocketed due to the following:

Expanding Focus: Attackers are broadening their focus from client-side to server-side exploits, avoiding detection and maximizing potential damage and profits.

  • Adobe Flash vulnerabilities continue to be one of the top targets for malvertising and exploit kits. In the popular Nuclear exploit kit, Flash accounted for 80 percent of successful exploit attempts.
  • Cisco also saw a new trend in ransomware attacks exploiting server vulnerabilities -- specifically within JBoss servers -- of which, 10 percent of Internet-connected JBoss servers worldwide were found to be compromised. Many of the JBoss vulnerabilities used to compromise these systems were identified five years ago, meaning that basic patching and vendor updates could have easily prevented such attacks.

Evolving Attack Methods: During the first half of 2016, adversaries continued to evolve their attack methods to capitalize on defenders' lack of visibility.

  • Windows Binary exploits rose to become the top web attack method over the last six months. This method provides a strong foothold into network infrastructures and makes these attacks harder to identify and remove.
  • During this same timeframe, social engineering via Facebook scams dropped to second from the top spot in 2015.

Covering Tracks: Contributing to defenders' visibility challenges, adversaries are increasing their use of encryption as a method of masking various components of their operations.

  • Cisco saw an increased use of cryptocurrency, Transport Layer Security and Tor, which enables anonymous communication across the web.
  • Significantly, HTTPS-encrypted malware used in malvertising campaigns increased by 300 percent from December 2015 through March 2016. Encrypted malware further enables adversaries to conceal their web activity and expand their time to operate.

Defenders Struggle to Reduce Vulnerabilities, Close Gaps
In the face of sophisticated attacks, limited resources and aging infrastructure, defenders are struggling to keep pace with their adversaries. Data suggests defenders are less likely to address adequate network hygiene, such as patching, the more critical the technology is to business operations. For example:

  • In the browser space, Google Chrome, which employs auto-updates, has 75 to 80 percent of users using the newest version of the browser, or one version behind.
  • When we shift from looking at browsers to software, Java sees slow migrations with one-third of the systems examined running Java SE 6, which is being phased out by Oracle (the current version is SE 10).
  • In Microsoft Office 2013, version 15x, 10 percent or less of the population of a major version are using the newest service pack version.

In addition, Cisco found that much of their infrastructure was unsupported or operating with known vulnerabilities. This problem is systemic across vendors and endpoints. Specifically, Cisco researchers examined 103,121 Cisco devices connected to the Internet and found that:

  • Each device on average was running 28 known vulnerabilities.
  • Devices were actively running known vulnerabilities for an average of 5.64 years.
  • More than 9 percent have known vulnerabilities older than 10 years.

In comparison, Cisco also looked across software infrastructure at a sample of over 3 million installations. The majority were Apache and OpenSSH with an average number of 16 known vulnerabilities, running for an average of 5.05 years.

Browser updates are the lightest-weight updates for endpoints, while enterprise applications and server-side infrastructure are harder to update and can cause business continuity problems. In essence, the more critical an application is to business operations, the less likely it is to be addressed frequently, creating gaps and opportunities for attackers.

Cisco Advises Simple Steps to Protect Business Environments
Cisco's Talos researchers have observed that organizations that take just a few simple yet significant steps can greatly enhance the security of their operations, including:

  • Improve network hygiene, by monitoring the network; deploying patches and upgrades on time; segmenting the network; implementing defenses at the edge, including email and web security, Next-Generation Firewalls and Next-Generation IPS.
  • Integrate defenses, by leveraging an architectural approach to security versus deploying niche products.
  • Measure time to detection, insist on fastest time available to uncover threats then mitigate against them immediately. Make metrics part of organizational security policy going forward.
  • Protect your users everywhere they are and wherever they work, not just the systems they interact with and when they are on the corporate network.
  • Back up critical data, and routinely test their effectiveness while confirming that back-ups are not susceptible to compromise.

Supporting Quote
"As organizations capitalize on new business models presented by digital transformation, security is the critical foundation. Attackers are going undetected and expanding their time to operate. To close the attackers' windows of opportunity, customers will require more visbility into their networks and must improve activities, like patching and retiring aging infrastructure lacking in advanced security capabilities.

"As attackers continue to monetize their strikes and create highly profitable business models, Cisco is working with our customers to help them match and exceed their attackers' level of sophistication, visbility and control."
-- Marty Roesch, Vice President and Chief Architect, Security Business Group, Cisco

About the Report
The Cisco 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report examines the latest threat intelligence gathered by Cisco Collective Security Intelligence. The report provides data-driven industry insights and cybersecurity trends from the first half of the year, along with actionable recommendations to improve security posture. It is based on data from a vast footprint, amounting to a daily ingest of over 40 billion points of telemetry. Cisco researchers translate intelligence into real-time protections for our products and service offerings that are immediately delivered globally to Cisco customers.

Supporting Resources
Cisco Video with David Goeckeler, Steve Martino: Cisco 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report
Cisco 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report
Cisco Blog: Time is of the Essence: Announcing the Cisco 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report
Cisco Infographic
Cisco 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report Graphics
Follow Cisco on Twitter @CiscoSecurity
Like Cisco Security on Facebook

About Cisco
Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide technology leader that has been making the Internet work since 1984. Our people, products, and partners help society securely connect and seize tomorrow's digital opportunity today. Discover more at newsroom.cisco.com and follow us on Twitter at @Cisco.

Cisco, the Cisco logo, Cisco Systems and Cisco IOS are registered trademarks or trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the United States and certain other countries. All other trademarks mentioned in this document are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Cisco and any other company. This document is Cisco Public Information.

LONDON – WinMagic Inc., the intelligent key management and data security company, has today released survey data in which IT managers say they thwart an attempted data breach at least once a month. The survey of 250 IT Managers found that a staggering 23% stop a breach every day. A data breach can be the result of an attack on the network, or an employee inadvertently sending or taking information out of the corporate network without adequate care.

 

The survey also spoke with 1,000 employees, 41% of whom believe IT security is solely the IT department’s responsibility – A further 37% say they have a role to play in IT security too. Even though so many employees seemingly abdicate themselves of responsibility for IT security, a fifth of IT managers want to be able to empower them to use personal devices to access work documents. Interestingly only 36% felt such access should be restricted to approved employees.

 

IT managers also rated employees as the second biggest risk behind hackers to security (24%). Employees also agreed they were a risk with 17% freely admitting they are “somewhat likely” to open an attachment from an unknown sender. It only takes a single action by one employee to lay the crown jewels bare. Unprotected devices are also a big risk; with an ever increasing attack surface from networked devices, the network is at a greater risk than ever before from a combination of internal and external threats.

 

A breach of data, can be loss as much as theft; The proliferation of mobile personal devices and their use for accessing work documents has not left IT managers feeling comfortable. The last line of defence from internal and external threats is encryption, but it has become complex to manage across enterprise and personal devices, on-premise infrastructure and cloud services – a deeply complicated multifaceted environment. It is not simply a case of managing ‘what’ is encrypted, but also the encryption keys themselves, which must pass seamlessly between different operating systems, hardware and standards, in a way that is frictionless: enabling business and the productivity of employees.

 

All the firewalls in the world can’t overcome the fact that human error can carve a huge hole to the heart of a business, whether losing a device, or becoming a victim of a phishing or malware attack. Encryption is the last line of defence against human error and the complexity and distributed nature of modern IT systems.

 

Andreas Jensen, Enterprise Director for EMEA at WinMagic commented, “Encryption itself can be a complex task open to human error. IT managers must recognise this and ensure they have the processes and tools in place to facilitate effective encryption across the entire device estate. Devices change and move as much as the data itself and encryption is not a tick box task. By using automation and effective tools, businesses can ensure that the last of defence from hackers and human error, is robust and minimizes the chance and impact of a data breach.”

 

About WinMagic, Inc.

WinMagic provides application aware intelligent key management for everything encryption, with robust, manageable and easy-to-use data security solutions. WinMagic’s SecureDoc secures data wherever it is stored, providing enterprise grade data encryption and application aware intelligent key management policies across all operating systems. SecureDoc is trusted by thousands of enterprises and government organisations worldwide to minimise business risks, meet privacy and regulatory compliance requirements, while protecting valuable information assets against unauthorised access.

 

For more information, please visit www.winmagic.com, call 1-888-879-5879 or e-mail us at info@winmagic.com.

 

WinMagic, and SecureDoc are trademarks and registered trademarks of WinMagic Inc., registered in the US and other countries. All other registered and unregistered trademarks herein are the sole property of their respective owners. © 2016 WinMagic Inc. All rights reserved.

 

Notes

WinMagic’s 1,000 person employee and 250 person IT manager surveys were undertaken in April 2016 by independent research company OnePoll.

LONDON – Skyscape Cloud Services Limited, the easy to adopt, easy to use and easy to leave assured cloud services company, has today announced the launch of its new cloud platform, based on Oracle’s Virtual Machine (OVM) technology. Skyscape’s Oracle platform will ensure that its public sector customers can host their workloads on Skyscape’s secure platform, while meeting the stringent licencing and hardware requirements specified by Oracle’s software solutions.

 

A wide variety of citizen-facing applications and UK public sector back office systems are based on Oracle’s database technology. Traditionally these systems require dedicated hardware which not only involves initial capital investment but also poses a challenge in terms of flexibility and capacity management – if more capacity is required, so is more hardware which takes time and resource to put in place. The very specific hardware and licencing requirements associated with Oracle solutions also make it difficult for public sector organisations to change hosting suppliers or deploy a diverse solution hosted across two platforms. Skyscape’s new Oracle platform provides a solution to these problems. Its customers can host their Oracle-based services with Skyscape and therefore realise the benefits of true cloud hosting – increased agility and consumption-based pricing as well as significantly reduced costs as the need for investment in hardware is removed. All whilst complying with Oracle’s licencing requirements.

 

“Our new Oracle Platform, which is built on OVM technology has been specifically designed with our commitment to the public sector in mind,” said Simon Hansford, CEO of Skyscape Cloud Services. “Our platform is used to deliver many critical services to citizens so it’s imperative that we continue to adapt to the evolving requirements of our public sector customers. This new platform will respond to these demands from customers using Oracle technologies, helping us to continue to support the public sector in the digital transformation of public services, ultimately benefiting UK citizens and tax payers.”

 

Matt Howell, Head of Public Sector at Capgemini said “We applaud the launch of Skyscape’s Oracle platform. While we have Oracle loads on the Skyscape platform, we observe a lag in cloud adoption amongst our public sector customers due to the lack of an assured platform designed specifically to meet the needs of Oracle applications. As Skyscape’s new platform complies with Oracle licencing it will enable those customers to migrate services to the cloud quicker and with less risk.”

 

The new Skyscape Oracle platform offers the same unique assurance, sovereignty and connectivity capabilities offered by Skyscape’s other platforms, all within an environment that is specifically optimised for Oracle workloads. Use of the Skyscape Oracle platform can enable organisations to prolong the lifecycle of existing applications by removing the reliance on legacy hardware. More importantly it can support further innovation across the public sector as it can be used to support projects that require high levels of security and assurance, combined with flexibility and scalability. Projects that can be up and running far quicker as test and development as well as production environments can be quickly established without the need to procure hardware.

 

“We’re really excited about the development of Skyscape’s Oracle based platform” said Vikram Setia, Partner and Chief Commercial Officer at Infomentum. “As an Oracle platinum partner, we understand the complexities of successfully delivering Oracle solutions in the cloud – especially for customers who have specific requirements around data management and location. Skyscape’s new Oracle based platform, and its sole focus on the requirements of the UK public sector, is great news for those looking to utilise a proven UK based cloud service provider to host their Oracle workloads.”

 

Additional benefits of Skyscape’s Oracle platform include:

  • Compatibility with a wide variety of Oracle technologies such as, but not exclusive to: Oracle Database, WebLogic, Fusion Applications, E-Business Suite and more
  • Service Level Agreements that are sensitive to the requirements of Oracle applications
  • Advanced Cross Domain Security Zone — a secure managed or self-managed area that enables citizen access over the internet to data which is securely hosted on the elevated domain
  • Broad networking – connect via the internet (with DDoS protection provided as standard); via Government community networks (PSN Assured service, PSN Protected service, N3, Janet, RLI; or legacy networks including PNN) or via HybridConnect

 

About Skyscape Cloud Services

Skyscape’s assured cloud solutions have been specifically designed to meet the needs of the UK public sector, delivering UK sovereign services that are easy to adopt, easy to use and easy to leave, with genuine pay-by-the-hour consumption models. As a UK SME, Skyscape has won a number of high-profile contracts via the G-Cloud Framework and through its large number of channel partners that embed Skyscape’s cloud platform in their solutions.

Skyscape’s full range of services are Pan Government Accredited (PGA) up to IL3, hence suitable for all data at OFFICIAL (including OFFICIAL-SENSITIVE) and connected to government networks including the Public Services Network (PSN), the N3 health network and others. Its services are delivered with leading technologies from the Skyscape Cloud Alliance Partners: QinetiQ, VMware, Cisco, EMC and Ark Data Centres.

Skyscape has been named a “Cool Vendor” by analyst firm, Gartner. To learn more about Skyscape, visit www.skyscapecloud.com or follow on twitter @skyscapecloud and LinkedIn: company/skyscape-cloud-services

CDC country office sign in Liberia

Countries need to be prepared to handle emergencies. Having the right laws in place is an important part of the preparation.

When laws are not clearly defined, responders can have a hard time figuring out what to do during a public health emergency and who has the authority to take action. When a deadly disease outbreak hits, this can have devastating consequences.

Liberia knows firsthand what can happen when laws don’t match the needs in the field. Their experience with the recent Ebola epidemic exposed gaps in legal authority during the response. This is one reason why Liberia’s government recently reached out to the GHSA Public Health Law Project. The project team is helping them document issues that could be improved by updating Liberia’s public health law, which was last fully revised in 1976.

Advancing the Global Health Security Agenda

Bucket of bleach for washing of hands before entering public buildings and entering counties

Ebola preventive measures in Liberia: Buckets of bleach to wash hands before entering public buildings and entering counties.

The GHSA Public Health Law Project takes a close look at how the law can help (or hinder) countries as they prepare to handle public health emergencies through the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA). Right now, over 50 countries around the world are working through the GHSA to improve their ability to prevent, detect, and rapidly respond to infectious disease threats. The GHSA Public Health Law Project currently covers nearly half of the GHSA countries. The team helps analyze the laws of a country and provides training to country officials to help them understand the importance of law as a public health tool.

The team begins its work by gathering information about existing laws and talking to experts about how public health law works in their country. In Liberia, the team found that people felt unclear about their roles during the Ebola response. As one country health official told the team, “There is confusion about roles in an emergency and enforcement. What is the role of the police? The ministry of health? The military? [This] needs to be better defined.”

Public Health Law in Liberia

Before the CDC team arrived in Liberia, the Ministry of Health’s Legal Counsel were already taking the lead to help modernize the law. This is a massive undertaking that the Government of Liberia hopes to accomplish as soon as possible.

The Liberian Ministry of Health’s (MOH) Legal Counsel and CDC’s Country Office Director invited the CDC project team to help them reach this goal through research and analysis of where there may be gaps in the law. The project team worked with a team from the University of North Carolina’s School of Government, who were invited for public health law support by Liberia’s Chief Medical Officer.

CDC Public Health Law team

From Left to Right: Jeff Austin (University of North Carolina), Emily Rosenfeld (CDC), Akshara Menon (CDC), Tomik Vobah and Aimee Wall (University of North Carolina)

Liberia will be able to use the information gathered by the team as they update their public health law. Once the laws are updated, the next step is making sure people are aware of them. A county health official laid out the problem he saw in Liberia: “Fundamentally, what is wrong is that the public health law is not widely known.” This official had been a practicing doctor for 11 years, but he had only read Liberia’s public health law for the first time two weeks prior to talking with the team.

Planning for the Future

The GHSA Public Health Law Project is being done collaboratively between CDC’s Center for Global Health and the Public Health Law Program. The project is compiling the laws from these countries into a single, searchable database to give a more complete picture of the legal landscape relating to the GHSA. The legal data obtained from this project will be a valuable resource when countries want to update their public health laws.

This initial legal mapping phase is only the beginning. What is really vital is how countries will use this information to help guide their work. The law can be an effective tool in meeting global health security goals and protecting people’s health — not only when a crisis hits, but every day.

A couple of weeks ago I was asked to present at the Business Continuity Institutes regional forum in Liverpool, the aim of the presentation me and my colleague gave was to ask the question;

Do you consider data security as part of your business continuity plan?

Surely it is isn’t it?

But you may be surprised at just how many people don’t believe it is. With IT BCP, we look at the big problems and large incidents, the complete failure of a system, the loss of a computer room or the loss of a building, however like with so many things in IT, it’s the little things that can get you and these little things sometimes slip the net.

It’s those perceived “little things” that we wanted to look at with the audience and share why in our opinion data security should be a significant part of your IT continuity plans.

...

https://techstringy.wordpress.com/2016/07/25/is-data-security-a-business-continuity-issue/

We all face a number of risks every day. Yet, we do not respond to each and every risk. We engage in risk-ranking our responses. Some are more risk than others and some are more catastrophic than others. So, we engage in risk ranking each day and allocate our time and attention accordingly.

The same applies, or should apply, when managing a compliance program. Resources are limited and compliance officers face a variety of risks. It is important, however, to rank these risks and then allocate time, attention and resources in accordance with these risk rankings.

The Justice Department and the SEC understand exactly how such a process works and expects to see risk-ranking systems incorporated in a compliance program. Once a company engages in risk ranking then the compliance officer is justified in assigning more resources to higher risk and reducing resources to lower risk activities. Assuming that such strategies are applied consistently and documented, there is no way the government will second-guess or recalculate risk ranking procedures.

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http://blog.volkovlaw.com/2016/07/importance-risk-ranking-compliance/

Regular and informative communication with your staff keeps the pulse of your organization beating. Employees value transparency, connectedness, and being in the know. When you, as an organization, make an active effort to communicate with your people when an incident occurs, or when an announcement affects their well-being, they know that their time, safety, and security are being respected.

Investing in an employee notification system such as AlertMedia enables you to streamline important communications to your staff—the people that make up and run the heart of your organization.

So, how can you use an employee notification system to best reach and connect with your employees?

Educate your employees, your audience. 

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https://www.alertmedia.com/guide-to-employee-notifications

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