Spring World 2015

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Fall Journal

Volume 27, Issue 4

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Jon Seals

CMC 5000:  Crisis Management & Communication Professional (CMCP)
5-Day Instructor Led or Self-Study Elearning Course

ICOR is pleased to announce the public launch of our latest new course offering - CMC 5000:  Crisis Management & Communication Professional.   

Offered as part of our Crisis Management & Communication Discipline in ICOR University, CMC 5000 provides critical information for those responsible for managing crises in the organization and providing both internal and external communications.  

UIC EMCP  

The University of Illinois Chicago offers this course to its students as part of its Emergency Management & Continuity Certificate Program and now this same course is available to the public.  

Offered as a self-study elearning course or a 5-day instructor-led course, CMC 5000 is ideal for senior management responsible for leading the organization during a crisis, those in public affairs, public relations, or anyone who is participates in crisis management in the organization.  

Successful completion of the course and passing the online examination results in earning the ICOR Credential, "Crisis Management & Communication Professional (CMCP).  

Register for the E-Learning Course 

CMC 5000: Crisis Management Communication Professional (CMCP)
The Discipline of Crisis Management
An Organization's Culture & its Impact on its Crisis Management Capability
Organizational Structure & Crisis Management
Crisis Communications Planning
The Role of Issues Readiness & Crisis Readiness in Crisis Management
The Importance of Leadership in a Crisis
Teams & their Role in Crisis Management
Managing the Crisis Communication Response
The Discipline of Crisis Management
The course begins with an introduction to the crisis management discipline, different scenarios to consider when preparing to write a crisis management plan, and the key elements of a crisis management plan based on international standard and PAS requirements.

An Organization's Culture & its Impact on its Crisis Management Capability
The importance of the role of organizational culture cannot be underestimated both in managing every day events and in particular in managing crises. Next we look at how to analyze the culture of the organization and work within its structure to create a more resilient organization and increase its crisis management capability. 

Organizational Structure & Crisis Management
Have you considered how the structure of the organization itself might impact its ability to manage a crisis?  This session takes a close look at how the structure of an organization can be its greatest asset or its greatest weakness - evaluating your organization and its structure may impact it crisis management capability. 

Crisis Communications Planning 
It is very important to develop a crisis communication system that aligns to
any crisis event effecting the organization. We will look at communication tools, strategies for communication - including social media strategies, message development, and the importance of media training.

The Role of Issues Management & Crisis Readiness in Crisis Management  
Reviewing topics such as situational awareness, horizon scanning, issues management, and how they contribute to a more "crisis-aware" organization, the course looks at the role of crisis readiness and issue management and its importance in managing a potential crisis event.
The Importance of Leadership in a Crisis
Understanding the elements of leadership in times of crisis may help better explain more
than any set of crisis plans why some organizations survive crises better than others and clarify how organizations can endure future crises. This lesson focuses on leadership qualities that have been shown to support the development of an effective crisis response.

Teams & their Role in Crisis Management 
A crisis cannot be managed by one person. A key factor in all crisis management programs
is the designation of a crisis management team engaged to manage the crisis event. This lesson focuses on the purpose of crisis management teams, who to choose to be on the team, and the importance of managing conflict within the team itself.  

Managing the Crisis Communication Response  
Building on the lesson on crisis communications planning, this lesson focuses specifically on crisis communication and reputation management by looking at modern case studies of organizations who have done it well - and at some who have not done it as well - in order to determine what works best for your organization.
Questions?  Contact Education@theicor.org or call 866-765-8321 or visit our website www.theicor.org.
 
Sincerely,
 
Lynnda Nelson, President
The International Consortium for Organizational Resilience
Save 10%
Did you know that you can save 10% on all ICOR courses if you are a member of one of the following organizations?  Contact them to find out how or email info@theicor.org.
  • ICOR
  • ACP
  • AFCOM
  • ASIS
  • BRPA
  • BRPA SW
  • IAEM
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Become an ICOR Member Today!

Partnership will increase exposure of best-in-class e-learning solutions for business continuity.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Arbor Continuity (http://arborcontinuity.com), a business continuity solutions provider, has announced that it has formed a strategic alliance with Ripcord Solutions (http://ripcordsolutions.com), provider of customized e-learning courses that vastly simplify training a company’s workforce to maintain and implement its business continuity program. Such training is critical during crises to protect the well-being of employees and safeguard business operations. This partnership will help make Ripcord Solutions’ innovative, cost-effective training courses available to more companies who are strengthening their business continuity programs.

“Training is a high-profile and must-have element of any strong business continuity program. Being able to offer Ripcord’s e-learning courses will equip our clients with the best possible training tools,” said Arbor Continuity founder and CEO, Richard Cooper. “Ripcord’s ability to rapidly deliver top-quality content to a company’s Learning Management Systems (LMS) differentiates this offering from “do it yourself” packages. Working with their e-learning team will provide us with another powerful tool to help further mature and elevate our clients’ business continuity programs.”

“The Arbor Continuity team are experts at the top of our industry when it comes to helping clients put all of the pieces of a business continuity program together,” said Ripcord Solutions’ VP of training production Paul Lambert. “Their ability to integrate our tailored e-learning offerings with other initiatives such as crisis communications and business continuity software will help mature and elevate BC programs across the board for companies large and small.”

About Arbor Continuity
Arbor Continuity provides comprehensive business continuity planning (BCP) and management consulting to companies of all sizes and industries to help them keep their employees safe and maintain business operations when crises strike. The firm specializes in three areas: designing and implementing effective programs, recommending and configuring BCP software tools, and recruitment of BCP professionals. The principals of the firm have decades of dedicated BCP experience working with some of the largest global firms. The company has headquarters in San Diego, CA and can be found online at http://arborcontinuity.com.

Leading risk visualization software integrated with SureView’s advanced situational awareness software to enhance situation awareness and incident response.

LANSING, Mich. – IDV Solutions, LLC and SureView Systems, LLC today announced that the companies have formed a technical partnership and completed an integration of SureView’s Immix® CC video-centric event management platform with IDV Solutions’ Visual Command Center® enterprise risk visualization (ERV) platform.

Using the combination of the two technologies, security operations teams can receive and process real time events from Visual Command Center in Immix CC and view live video from Immix CC within Visual Command Center. This integration enables users to make more efficient use of video, by identifying and accessing cameras near those locations where Visual Command Center has identified a potential threat and automatically associating these threats with dynamic workflows and enforceable Standard Operating Procedures within the Immix CC event management interface.

Visual Command Center provides security operations teams with a single, comprehensive view of their assets—such as buildings, employee locations, corporate events and supply routes—along with events that may threaten those assets, including acts of terrorism, severe weather, civil unrest, and hazardous materials releases. It consolidates information from multiple sources, including Web feeds and an organization’s internal systems, on an interactive map and timeline.

When Visual Command Center detects a potential threat near an asset or employee location, it automatically alerts operators, who can use powerful visualization, filtering, and query tools to assess the threat, and then act to mitigate risk.

SureView Systems’ Immix CC is a video-based alarm monitoring platform for command centers. The software platform consolidates activities from any data source including video surveillance, access control intrusion, two way audio and GPS alarms. Immix enables organizations to centralize their security monitoring, including video surveillance, and lower ongoing costs.

Integration of the two software products lets users access their security cameras from maps and floor plans in Visual Command Center. When security operators receive an alert from Visual Command Center, they can use query and filtering tools to locate cameras near the alert location and then view those live video streams.

“Visual Command Center provides a ‘big picture’ view of global, regional, and local risk factors,” said Mark Morrison, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder, IDV Solutions. “While Immix CC provides ‘up close’ situational awareness through video monitoring. This integration will increase security operators’ ability to use video to protect facilities and employees.”

“Our strategic partnership with IDV Solutions delivers expanded situational awareness, enforceable workflows and world-class visualization of assets to our rapidly expanding customer base,” said Rob Hile, Director of Strategic Accounts, SureView Systems. “By combining our core strengths into one technology offering, we can truly deliver an ‘out of the box’ solution to our customers without custom development efforts that are expensive to build and maintain over time.” 

 

About IDV Solutions, LLC

IDV Solutions, LLC helps organizations take command of risk by delivering Enterprise Risk Visualization capabilities through software and services that enable organizations to protect their assets, ensure continuity of operations and optimize performance.  Its Visual Command Center software is an enterprise platform for risk awareness and response used in organizational functions such as business continuity, security, supply chain and operations to mitigate or eliminate the impact of risk.  By helping organizations in the Global 2000 and government manage risk through visualization, IDV Solutions and its products have earned a reputation for innovation, speed, and the highest quality user experience.

 

About SureView Systems, LLC

Sureview Systems is an innovative provider of situational awareness software specifically designed for the security / life safety industry.  SureView’s core offering, Immix® is a video centric event management platform designed to integrate with multiple systems, sensors and devices to provide security professionals with a comprehensive view of their entire security and business operation from a single, simple to use operator interface. 

A leading Global network of independent high quality audit, accounting, tax, and business advisory services to international and domestic organizations combines with partners to better serve the advisory marketplace for accountants and their clientele.

DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. – Universal Insurance Services, considered one of the most innovative life insurance and financial advisory distribution firms in the country, has announced a strategic alliance with Harbor Strategies Group and NAPLIA, a leading risk management provider and one of Inc 5000's fastest growing companies, to offer cutting edge services to PKF North America, a global network of legally independent accounting firms.

Terry Snyder, President & CEO of PKF North America, has a long standing relationship with NAPLIA; he will look to Stephen Vono, Partner of NAPLIA in this new endeavor, to provide more innovative and creative risk management solutions to the accounting marketplace. "We consider alliances only when we believe there is an inherent ability to provide better services for our association and a compelling value in the market. We are excited to offer these benefits to our members, which we believe are the best available," said Mr. Snyder.

This strategic alliance will offer a broad range of solutions to include consulting and advanced planning for the members of PKF NA. Its distinctive model is not product or carrier specific and maintains a purely objective strategy when analyzing the life insurance, disability, risk management, long term care and executive benefits marketplace. Many of the offerings are discounted and/or unique, as well as not readily available.

Stephen Vono commented, "Our combined experience in the insurance and risk management world will allow us to offer education, services and creative options to our clients we believe no one else can offer." Dierdre Collins, Principal of Harbor Strategies added, "I have been proud to serve the accounting space in a consultative capacity for several years, and working with both NAPLIA and Universal allows a more efficient and effective platform."

Mitchell K. Smith and Michael Sorensen, the Managing Partners of Universal Insurance Services, will offer a unique, creative and innovative platform they believe to be unmatched in their space. Universal has the capabilities to focus in on solutions and pricing not typically obtainable, effectively and efficiently securing insurance products and executive benefit strategies for their clients. In addition, they have access to exclusive products. Their work also includes life insurance structures that can reduce the expense of traditional plans by measurable percentages.

"We realize there is a gap in the options, objectivity and creativity offered, even by the largest of firms," stated Mr. Sorensen. Mitchell Smith remarked, "Combining what we believe to be the best in wholesale insurance brokerage, financial advisory and advanced planning experience, we have created the ultimate source for our space."

About Universal Insurance Services
Universal Insurance Services is a life insurance and financial advisory distribution firm, which consults, advises and coaches professionals around the country. Universal serves high net worth individuals, corporate, private equity, executive benefit, RIAs, insurance agents, attorneys, CPA's, investment organizations, broker dealers and general agencies, as an objective specialist. Attaining the best possible solutions for their clients, through advanced planning techniques, underwriting, carrier and product support, sales assistance and more, Universal anticipates, innovates and educates, allowing their client's to focus on what they do best.

NEWARK, Calif. – Tegile Systems, the leading provider of flash-driven storage arrays for databases, virtualized server and virtual desktop environments, today announced that International Decision Systems, a provider of software and consulting services to more than 250 customers in 34 countries, has implemented Tegile hybrid arrays to improve its data center capabilities.

IDS offices and data centers around the world serve banking and financial services firms, including nearly half of the largest leasing companies in the United States. The company’s enterprise-class HDD arrays were direct-attached, and nearly all servers are virtualized, yet Craig Debban, global IT director, who was noticing storage-based performance issues that impacted productivity along with dwindling capacity. 

Despite multiple frustrating, unsuccessful visits from their EMC engineers and support team, Debban said the disk systems wasted performance and were not configured correctly. Rather than more of the same for only an incremental improvement, IDS evaluated a variety of approaches to meet IOPS needs.
When a Tegile representative said IDS could expect storage capacity savings from 40 to 50 percent based on deduplication and compression features included in the Tegile array, Debban considered this a ‘hyperbolic’ sales pitch. But since installing the Tegile HA2130EP hybrid system and two expansion shelves earlier this year, he says the benefits were hardly hyperbolic. Instead of the estimated 50 percent improvement in storage performance, actual results are closer to 75 percent, he says. IDS stores nearly 18 TB on the Tegile system, but data services reduced that footprint to just 4.58 TB. 

“We are currently seeing 74.43 percent savings in our data and I expect that number to go up as we add more servers,” said Debban. “With Tegile, the performance problems are gone. We went from people noticing slowness to it no longer being an issue at all.”

Cloning time on the company’s virtual machines has also gone from approximately 30 minutes to about 2 or 3 minutes. The dramatic increase in performance did not require any changes to the existing network, and the impressive performance gains required no reconfiguration. Tegile hardware connects via IDS’ existing mix of 10GB and 1GB Ethernet running both iSCSI and NFS protocols. Data services include deduplication, compression, thin provisioning, snapshots, remote replication and application profiles.

IDS also valued the ease of use, which translates to fiscal savings too – Tegile arrays require only an IT generalist’s understanding of storage, unlike other vendors that require several days or weeks of training. With a global workforce like IDS, the cost and staff time of specialized training quickly add up and become unsustainable. 

Prior to the move to Tegile, IDS had planned to build a data center in India, but because of the infrastructure savings realized, the company is reconsidering this investment. Instead, they believe it will be just as cost-effective to build in the U.S., with the added advantage that the corporate IT team can have greater control over data security. 

“Reducing infrastructure costs will make the U.S. data center cost-competitive with the facility in India,” said Debban. “This was an unanticipated benefit that not only can improve the performance and security of the data center infrastructure, but also makes maintenance and support easier. It also provides sales with a competitive advantage by ensuring clients that their data never leaves the shores of the U.S. We can build upon this framework for years to come.”

Tegile’s advanced hybrid storage arrays combines high-performance DRAM and Flash SSD with less-expensive hard disk and a comprehensive set of data management and protection features to deliver both speed and capacity at an affordable price. Tegile’s arrays balance high performance, high capacity, features and price making them the ideal solution for a wide range of industries and applications.

About Tegile Systems
Tegile Systems is pioneering a new generation of intelligent flash arrays that balance performance, capacity, features and price for virtual desktop and database applications. With Tegile’s line of all-flash and hybrid storage arrays, the company is redefining the traditional approach to storage by providing a family of arrays that accelerate business critical enterprise applications and allow customers to significantly consolidate mixed workloads in virtualized environments.
Tegile’s patented IntelliFlash™ technology accelerates performance and enables inline deduplication and compression of data so each array has a usable capacity far greater than its raw capacity. Tegile’s award-winning solutions enable customers to better address the requirements of virtualization, virtual desktop integration and database integration than any 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, remote-replication, near-instant recovery, onsite or offsite failover, and VM-aware features. Additional information is available at www.tegile.com. Follow Tegile on Twitter @tegile.

Leading change and configuration auditing platform provides complete visibility and ensures that sensitive data is under permanent control

Netwrix has announced the release of Netwrix Auditor 6.5, providing comprehensive monitoring and auditing capabilities to streamline compliance, strengthen security and simplify root cause analysis across the entire IT infrastructure, including file servers and shares. Delivering complete visibility into who changed what, when and where, along with before and after values of any modification, Netwrix Auditor 6.5 transforms complicated audit logs into human-readable audit trails.

Netwrix Auditor 6.5 also enables auditing of any configuration changes from any point in time and archives historic audit data. These capabilities, coupled with comprehensive change auditing, helps ensure that security policies in place are working and the risk of insider misuse is minimised.

“The ability to secure sensitive data should become a number one priority for organisations of all sizes,” said Michael Fimin, CEO and Co-Founder of Netwrix. “Information leaks have devastating consequences, including loss in customer demand, revenue and reputation. Organisations should establish security policies that are able to detect insider misuse and track malicious changes made to sensitive information. The new release of Netwrix Auditor 6.5 is an exact answer to market demand that provides complete visibility across file servers and monitors privileged accounts, ensuring that data leaks are detected on early stages.”

The new Netwrix Auditor 6.5 includes the following key features:

  • Detection and prevention of security breaches on file servers and storage appliances:
    • Complete visibility into who has access to which files across multiple file servers, EMC devices and NetApp filers.
    • Analysis and comparison of file system state and permissions for any point in time.
  • Enhanced screen activity recording of privileged users, allowing capture, search and review of all user activity, even if users have multiple monitors.
  • Over 30 enhancements to improve scalability, performance and usability of Active Directory and file servers change auditing.

Netwrix Auditor provides the broadest coverage of audited systems and applications including Active Directory, Exchange, File Servers, SharePoint, SQL Server, VMware, Windows Server and others. It also supports auditing of virtually any other system or application, even if it does not produce any logs, via screen activity recording of privileged users with ability to search and replay or tracking configurations stored in databases.

Netwrix Auditor 6.5 is licensed per enabled Active Directory user and is also available as Netwrix Auditor for Exchange, Files Servers, SharePoint, SQL Server, VMware and Windows Server.

For more information please visit: http://www.netwrix.com/auditor6.5

About Netwrix Corporation

Netwrix Corporation, the #1 provider of change and configuration auditing solutions, delivers complete visibility into who did what, when, and where across the entire IT infrastructure. This streamlines compliance, strengthens security, and simplifies root cause analysis. Founded in 2006, Netwrix is ranked in the Top 100 US software companies in the Inc. 5000 and Deloitte Technology Fast 500. Netwrix software is used by 160,000 users worldwide. For more information, visit www.netwrix.com.

LONDON – Carriers must look to the future and transform their business models in order to compete and win in an increasingly competitive business environment, Telstra’s Global Head of Wholesale, Peter Hobbs, has warned.
 
Speaking at Carriers World, which is taking place in London today, Mr Hobbs described how the wholesale carrier landscape is “heating up” with new entrant customers including start-ups, social networking sites and OTT providers transforming traditional wholesale operating models.
 
He advised the audience on what to consider when responding to these emerging technologies, evolving customer needs and new entrant customers.
 
“To succeed, carriers need to continue to support their traditional revenue streams while also embracing new, innovative services and customer types,” said Mr Hobbs. “While some may argue that the challenge for carriers is that their traditional operating models are not adapted to the more nimble Internet-orientated service experiences, it’s undeniable that telecom wholesalers and technology go hand in hand.”
 
Despite the emergence of OTT video and media services, which triggered the data traffic explosion, Hobbs insisted there is a “success formula” for carriers and that shifting to a “service organisation” focused on the customer should be the number one priority.

This formula, he said, addresses distinct “battlegrounds” for wholesale carriers, including mobile voice and messaging and media services. Mr Hobbs continued by telling his audience that carriers should not underestimate their ability to shape each of these markets – it just may require a little experimenting.
 
“When looking at media services, carriers will be able to explore new forms of content and services as well as multi-screen integration,” Mr Hobbs explained. “Also key is the enabling of technology platforms and business ecosystems, and extensive partnerships.”
 
Hobbs named Telstra as an example of how a business can transform, revealing some of the strategies Telstra used to react to disruptive technology, differentiated digital capabilities and co-creation. This, he noted, did mean sometimes going against the norm.
 
“The ability to be creative and rethink processes, operations and business models has not always come easy to many large telecom operators,” he added.
 
“Our recent acquisition of Ooyala, a leader in video streaming and analytics, is a great example of how we are evolving our own business in a hyper-competitive market, combining Telstra’s global experience and presence with the intensity and agility of an independent Silicon Valley company.”
 
As he ended his presentation, Mr Hobbs left the audience with three tips for encouraging carrier success.
 
“Take stock of the considerable assets and capabilities you already possess; determine how you can leverage these assets and capabilities in order to compete against, or with, the new entrant customers; and keep your focus firmly on your customers, their needs and strategic priorities versus internal silos structured around subscriber and revenue growth,” he concluded.

Collaboration is a First Step but More Action Needed

STAMFORD, Conn. – With the two year anniversary of Sandy just weeks away, the RenaissanceRe Risk Sciences Foundation convened the Northeast Risk & Resilience Leadership Forum in Stamford, CT last week, bringing together 350 industry leaders, environmentalists, policy makers, and scientists to assess lessons learned from the second costliest storm in U.S. history and to examine best practices for mitigating and adapting to severe weather in the future.

The day-long forum tackled a number of important issues raised by Sandy through panel discussions and keynote speeches from powerful figures in government and the environmental community.

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) a member of Congress's Joint Economic Committee, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, addressed the delegates and said he will continue to push Congress to adopt strong and proactive environmental policies that combat climate change, curb pollution, invest in renewable energy, and promote sustainable development solutions.

"I'm thrilled that such a distinguished group of disaster resilience experts was able to assemble in Stamford," said Murphy. "It's not a question of whether we'll see another Superstorm Sandy, but only a question of when. We need the best minds working together on these complex challenges, and I hope this event helped move us toward that goal."

David Marra, SVP and Chief Underwriting Officer - Casualty & Specialty, RenaissanceRe, and head of RenaissanceRe's newly-launched Connecticut office, led a panel on the changing view of risk in the Northeast. Mr. Marra said that the forum presented a great opportunity for RenaissanceRe to use its thought leadership and deep expertise in natural catastrophe risk to raise awareness of the complex issues in this area and support better risk mitigation and preparedness.

"Working in collaboration with our partners in academia, science, commerce, government and the non-profit sector, this event brought experts and decision-makers together for a timely and relevant discussion," he said. "With a powerful concentration of industry talent and as a state heavily impacted by Sandy, Connecticut was the ideal place for such a forum."

The Northeast Risk & Resilience Leadership Forum was the tenth in a series of Risk Mitigation Leadership Forums convened by the RenaissanceRe Risk Sciences Foundation. Stephen Weinstein, RenaissanceRe's General Counsel, is Chairman of the RenaissanceRe Risk Sciences Foundation. "I want to thank the Forum's participants for contributing to such a productive discussion about the impact of Sandy on the Northeast region and what we all need to do to protect people and property from the deadly effects of natural disasters," said Weinstein. "Our collective goal is to move the nation towards a proactive rather than reactive response to severe weather and other disasters through increased resiliency measures, improved construction practices, and reformed financing mechanisms in which willing private sector participants bear a larger share of their costs and pursue innovation to enhance their affordability. If we succeed, we will reduce both the life safety risks and economic costs of these increasing perils."

Debra Ballen, General Counsel for the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS), a Forum co-sponsor, applauded the RenaissanceRe Risk Sciences Foundation for convening the forum and focusing attention on regional resilience issues in the aftermath of Sandy.

"One of the important contributions the scientists and meteorologists taking part in the forum made was giving us a better understanding of the unique weather conditions facing the Northeast," said Ballen. "This insight will allow the insurance industry to help advance best practices in rebuilding that are universal but also tailored to the unique needs of each region."

Other prominent industry leaders taking part in the forum included Katherine Greig, Senior Policy Advisor, Climate Change and Insurance in the New York City Mayor's Office of Recovery and Resiliency; Bradley Kading, President and Executive Director, Association of Bermuda Insurers & Reinsurers (ABIR), and Craig Tillman, President, WeatherPredict Consulting Inc.

Panel discussions explored what made Sandy a "Super Storm", how it was different from other major hurricanes and whether Sandy was the "big one." Panels also delved into how the view of risk in the region has changed since Sandy, ways to boost resilient recovery following a major event, the appropriate role of government in disaster education, response and recovery, and the question of whether major urban centers were sufficiently prepared to deal with severe weather in the future. The role of coastal ecosystems and land use in protecting communities in the Northeast against severe weather was also addressed.

In addition to IBHS, other forum co-sponsors included the Center for Clean Air Policy (CCAP), the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH), the Union of Concerned Scientists, the University of Connecticut Sea Grant program, and WeatherPredict Consulting Inc.

More information about the Northeast Risk & Resilience Leadership Forum is available at www.mitigationleadership.com.  

New Brocade Extension Platform Improves Recovery Point and Recovery Time Objectives via Superior WAN Link Utilization and Unique Failover Functionality; Extends Fabric Vision Technology over Distance to Provide Network Control and Visibility for Non-Stop Business Operations

 

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Brocade (NASDAQ: BRCD), the leader in data center fabric networking solutions, today announced a new extension platform that enables enterprises to achieve significantly shorter recovery points and faster recovery times for restoring data and applications in the event of a disaster, or when performing routine backup and replication tasks over unreliable Wide Area Network (WAN) links. The new Disaster Recovery (DR) platform also extends Brocade® Fabric Vision™ technology between data centers to automate monitoring, increase insight, and simplify troubleshooting over distance to automatically detect WAN anomalies, help ensure performance, and avoid unplanned downtime.

Enterprises today face significant challenges from the explosive growth of data and application workload traffic driven by virtualization, which is putting considerable pressure on IT to keep data highly available. According to IDC, disaster recovery requirements have become increasingly stringent for their mission-critical applications, with 84 percent of enterprises having RPOs of less than an hour and 78 percent having RTOs of less than four hours.1

"With stored data expected to grow at a 44 percent CAGR over the next five years, enterprises are demanding that their recovery solutions meet ever higher standards in keeping data available amid a wide variety of increasingly frequent natural and man-made disasters," said Eric Burgener, research director for storage at IDC. "Furthermore, end users are expecting to access their data on a 7x24 basis, forcing enterprises to meet their demands for 'always on' application services."

To address these challenges and to provide near-zero downtime and continuous application availability, Brocade has expanded its Gen 5 Fibre Channel SAN portfolio with the addition of the Brocade 7840 Extension Switch, which delivers a six-fold increase in performance, along with unprecedented availability and simplified management between remote data centers. The solution also doubles the performance, at half the cost, compared to WAN optimization appliances that are often mismatched when deployed as a DR alternative.

To complement the new switch, Brocade has also extended Fabric Vision technology between data centers to provide new levels of control and visibility to pinpoint problems faster and avoid unplanned outages. This new functionality reduces the complexity and operating costs for remote data centers, helping them to achieve always-on operations with maximum application uptime.

"Managing multiple data centers is inherently complex and time-intensive," said Jack Rondoni, vice president, Storage Networking, at Brocade. "By deploying the Brocade 7840 Extension Switch with enhanced Fabric Vision technology, organizations can create better solutions that meet or exceed their requirements and expectations for faster replication and recovery to achieve always-on operations."

In addition, the company also announced the Brocade FC16-64, a new port blade for the Brocade DCX® 8510 Director that provides the industry's highest density and most energy-efficient connectivity to maximize system utilization and reduce both capital and operating costs. The new blade increases Brocade DCX 8510 scalability up to 512 Gen 5 Fibre Channel ports with a total system bandwidth of 10.2 Terabits per second (Tbps). Each blade consumes 70 percent less power compared to competitive offerings, while simultaneously increasing port density by 33 percent and reducing cabling requirements by 75 percent -- greatly improving operational efficiency.

 

Brocade 7840 Improves Enterprise Disaster Recovery Readiness

Furthering the company's reputation for innovation in storage fabrics, Brocade 7840 switches offer both the industry's first 40 Gigabits per second (Gbps) and 10 Gbps FCIP connectivity options, with data throughput speeds that are at least six times faster than competitive solutions. Brocade 7840 systems deliver an unprecedented 80 Gbps of application data throughput while securing data flows over distance with 256-bit IPsec encryption without a performance penalty.

In addition, Brocade 7840 switches significantly improve replication performance over distance using data compression and disk and tape protocol acceleration. Other advanced extension features that maximize availability and increase overall network reliability include:

  • Non-disruptive Upgrades: Facilitate always-on business operations and maximize application uptime with the industry's only WAN-side non-disruptive firmware upgrades.
  • Extension Trunking: Combines multiple WAN connections into a single, logical, high-bandwidth trunk, providing active load balancing and network resilience to protect against WAN link failures.
  • Adaptive Rate Limiting: Dynamically adjusts bandwidth sharing between minimum and maximum rate limits to optimize bandwidth utilization and maintain WAN performance during disruptions.

 

Fabric Vision Technology Enables Long-Distance Monitoring, Management, and Diagnostics

Unique to the Brocade Fibre Channel SAN family, and now extended over distance, Fabric Vision technology is a hardware and software solution that helps enterprises accelerate new deployments, optimize resources, dramatically reduce operational costs, and overcome infrastructure complexity between data centers.

With Fabric Vision technology, administrators have new tools and automation capabilities that simplify day-to-day management tasks, increase productivity, and enable proactive monitoring of critical metrics between data centers to automatically detect WAN anomalies, help ensure performance, and avoid unplanned downtime. 

Key features for DR include:

  • Monitoring and Alerting Policy Suite (MAPS): Simplifies monitoring with policy-based automation between data centers to automatically detect WAN anomalies and avoid unplanned downtime.
  • Flow Vision: Accelerates troubleshooting of end-to-end I/O flows over distance with integrated diagnostics and eliminates the need for expensive third-party tools.
  • Dashboards: Quickly discover and resolve WAN network issues via root-cause analysis and point-in-time playback. In addition, administrators can view all critical information from thin-client, Web-accessible dashboards, which saves significant administrative time and effort.

 

Availability

The Brocade 7840 Extension Switch, extended Fabric Vision technology, and the Brocade FC16-64 port blade for the Brocade DCX 8510 will be available this calendar quarter through select Brocade OEM partners, including EMC, HDS, and others.

 

Partner Quotes

"Data protection is fundamental to IT transformation and has enabled EMC customers to move backup and recovery and replication from a cost center to a business enabler. The increased performance and functionality of the Brocade 7840 is a strategic addition to our Connectrix® family that increases the overall value of the EMC Protection Storage Architecture."
Barry Ader, Vice President, Product Marketing, EMC Corporation

"Keeping our mutual customers operating nonstop is more than just planning for disaster recovery -- it's about building a resilient enterprise. With significant improvements in throughput, along with improved network control and insight, the Brocade 7840 is an ideal high-performance data center extension platform for backup and replication that will improve our customer's data and application availability."
Linda Xu, Vice President, Worldwide Partner Marketing, Hitachi Data Systems

 

About Brocade

Brocade (NASDAQ: BRCD) networking solutions help the world's leading organizations transition smoothly to a world where applications and information reside anywhere. (www.brocade.com)

Events Ticketing Giant Lowers Total Cost of Ownership, Enhances Infrastructure and Introduces Scalable Efficiencies With N-series Thin Client Solution

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – NComputing, a leader in client virtualisation solutions, today announced that Tickets.com selected the award-winning NComputing N-series thin client solution to deliver superior customer service and support for the world's largest and most popular event ticketing source. Tickets.com has invested in market-leading and complementary virtualisation solutions, including NComputing N-series and Citrix XenDesktop, to improve inefficiencies in system performance and configurations, PC patching and maintenance and PCI compliance.

"After an extensive analysis across thin client options to work with our Citrix environment, NComputing is our partner of choice," said Joe Choti, president and CEO of Tickets.com. "The NComputing N-series exceeded all of our requirements, and today we have a valuable partner whose thin clients technology and also personnel play a key role as we build and maintain reliable ticketing technology for our venue partners and their customers."

NComputing N-series thin clients are ideal for enterprise organisations looking to extend their investments in Citrix XenDesktop, XenApp or VDI-in-a-Box. The technology provides 100 percent of the HDX experience at a fraction of the cost of PCs or other thin client solutions. With full manageability and support, organisations can more cost-effectively extend their Citrix deployments to more users using NComputing technology, enhancing the benefits of desktop virtualisation at a lower total cost of ownership.

The demands of high-volume online ticket sales are complex, and Tickets.com sought out a solution to replace a fleet of aging PCs, which required frequent maintenance interruptions for installing new patches, updates and maintaining PCI compliance. Consultants from MTM Technologies determined that Citrix's tight integration with USB ports would support the company's ticket printing requirements. NComputing N-series thin clients were a natural fit because they are purpose-built for Citrix virtualisation environments.

Tickets.com initially implemented 100 N-series devices with two Major League Baseball clubs in California. Installation took less than one day and with immediate benefits, the investment was soon expanded. Today, it takes booth ticket sellers only 40 seconds to restart their systems after work has been done to the network, half as long as before, which is critical when patrons are waiting at a ticket window.

"Tickets.com has found success with our thin clients in combination with Citrix XenDesktop for improved systems performance and management," said Dave Burton, vice president, global marketing for NComputing. "Regular software upgrades are streamlined because everything is performed centrally rather than installed and configured on a PC-to-PC basis. A brand closely aligned with a winning customer experience, Tickets.com is invested in new technologies that maintain its superior customer service and support reputation."

A video of Tickets.com's use of NComputing N-series thin clients can be found at: http://bit.ly/1mWpmgN

To jump-start the benefits of NComputing N-series thin client solutions, NComputing is offering a free trial to users. Interested customers can find more information and request a trial at: http://www.ncomputing.com/products/nseries/overview.

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Tweet This: .@Ticketsdotcom delivers winning customer service & support w/ @NComputing #thin clients http://bit.ly/1t1tZZE

About Tickets.com:

Tickets.com, Inc. is a privately held subsidiary of MLB Advanced Media, LP, the interactive media and Internet division of Major League Baseball. First incorporated in 1995 and later rebranded as Tickets.com, Inc. in 2001, the company was initially a merger of nine ticketing firms.

Tickets.com is headquartered in Costa Mesa, Calif., with regional offices across the U.S. and around the world, including Canada, Europe, Australia and Asia. Tickets.com's diverse client portfolio includes Major League Baseball, National Hockey League, major arena, large performing arts organizations, as well as the 1996 Atlanta and 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games.

About NComputing:

NComputing, Inc. is a leader in client virtualization solutions. Removing the barriers through a unique formula of simplicity, performance and value, NComputing’s integrated solutions serve global enterprise and mid-market companies in key verticals such as education, healthcare and government. With over 20 million daily users in 140 countries, the company is fueling the adoption of client virtualization faster than any other in the world. To learn more, visit http://www.ncomputing.com.