The Continuity Logic customized demo provides an opportunity for qualifying organizations to evaluate Frontline Live 5™, with their plans, desired controls, policies, and procedures. This first-of-its-kind system for both business continuity and many other areas of Governance, Operational Risk and Compliance (GRC) is powerful, but often best viewed with some of your familiar plans, data and templates.


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Volume 28, Issue 3

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Jon Seals

Monday, 12 October 2015 00:00

The Strategic Risk of Tunnel Vision

… how to detect it and how to avoid it

As much as we admire those who inspire us with a gripping idea of tomorrow – the people we like to refer to as “visionaries” – we dismiss and condemn those whose vision turns out to have been an illusion. We claim that we knew all along that their perspective was mistaken. But with the benefit of hindsight, anyone can identify tunnel vision. The important question is, how could we have detected it before it happened?

The stories of Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Jack Welch and – let’s not forget – Steve Jobs: they all make our mouths water. Unconventional ideas, great foresight, captivating visions and (mostly) huge successes. Or take the story of Alan Mulally, the former CEO of Ford Motor Company, who miraculously saved the company from the brink of bankruptcy. In 2012, Mulally told Forbes: “What I have learned is the power of a compelling vision.” And this wasn’t book knowledge; Mulally’s forward-oriented leadership style steered Ford back onto the path of success.



Solid State Drives are making serious in-roads into the enterprise datacentre, with enhanced read/write operations offering significant performance improvements. This speed boost coupled with consistent price reductions per gigabyte now means that datacentre arrays build around SSDs are a practical option for business.

But does the use of SSD storage present any new challenges that DBAs and network engineers need to be aware of?



COLUMBIA, S.C. – Registering with the Federal Emergency Management Agency is the first step to getting federal disaster assistance.

After you apply, FEMA will send you a copy of your application and a copy of “Help After a Disaster: Applicant’s Guide to the Individuals and Households Program,” which will answer many of your questions.

This publication explains how FEMA’s disaster assistance program works; describes additional kinds of help you may qualify for from other federal, state and voluntary agencies; and gives you many important tips on how best to make all these programs work for you.

After You Register

If your home or its contents are damaged and you are uninsured or underinsured, verifying disaster damage is part of the process to establish the amount and type of damage you suffered.

You will get a call from an inspector who has construction background and is fully qualified to do the job. Inspectors are private contractors who wear official FEMA ID badges. If you have concerns with the legitimacy of a FEMA housing inspector, you should contact your local law enforcement as they will be able to validate their identification. 

Authorized inspectors will only confirm personal detailed information that you previously provided during the registration process, such as your registration number. They never charge for an inspection.

The U.S. Small Business Administration and various insurance companies also have inspectors in the field. You may also see preliminary damage assessment teams in your area.

Inspector's Call

After you register – either online at DisasterAssistance.gov, by calling 800-621-3362 (TTY 800-462-7585) or visiting a disaster recovery center – a nine-digit application number is assigned. An inspector will then call to schedule an appointment to visit your damaged property – generally no longer than 10 days after registration.

Inspector's Visit

Keep the scheduled appointment to make sure the assistance process moves quickly. The inspection should take typically 10 to 20 minutes. You – or someone who is 18 or older and lived in the household prior to the disaster – must be present for the scheduled appointment. Inspectors will review both structural and personal property damage and file a report, but they do not determine eligibility or determine the value of damage or losses.

A FEMA inspection is not an insurance inspection. If you are covered by insurance, you should contact your insurance company immediately as FEMA cannot duplicate payments.

Proof of Ownership or Occupancy

The inspector will ask for identification and proof of ownership and occupancy (for homeowners) and occupancy only (for renters). You can speed up the process by having the appropriate documents on hand:

  • A photo ID to prove identity, such as driver’s license or passport.
  • Proof of occupancy, such as a lease, rent payment receipt or utility bill.
  • Proof of ownership, such as a deed, title, mortgage payment book, property insurance policy or tax receipts.  

After the Inspector’s Visit

You will receive a letter from FEMA containing a decision within 10 days of the inspector’s visit. If you are eligible for assistance, the letter will be followed by a check or an electronic funds transfer. The letter explains how the money can be used. You may receive a low-interest disaster loan application in the packet from the SBA. You do not have to accept a loan. However, you must complete the application and return it to SBA to remain eligible for other types of federal assistance, such as FEMA grants.

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.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.

Mistakes made by employees are the leading cause of data loss incidents within UK organisations, new research has found.

A survey of over 400 IT decision-makers conducted by Databarracks found almost a quarter of respondents (24 percent) admitted to experiencing a data loss as the result of human error in the last 12 months.

This was the most common cause of such incidents overall, followed by hardware failure (21 percent) and corrupted files (19 percent).

Small businesses were found to be particularly badly affected by human error, as when the survey results were broken down by business size, larger companies were revealed to be more susceptible to hardware failure, whereas employee mistakes were the number one issue for less-sizeable firms.



Washington D.C. - More than 40 U.S. states have some potential for earthquakes. To increase earthquake preparedness, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) encourages all Americans to participate in the Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill happening on Thursday, October 15, at 10:15 a.m. local time.

“Residents in California aren’t the only ones threatened by the potential of a catastrophic earthquake,” said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. “From the Cascadia subduction zone in the Pacific Northwest to the New Madrid seismic zone in the South and Midwest, millions of Americans live and travel to areas that can be impacted by a major earthquake. All of us – regardless of where we live – should be prepared by knowing what to do: drop, cover, and hold on.”

In most situations during an earthquake, one would drop to the ground, take cover under a nearby sturdy table or desk, and hold on to it until the shaking stops. People who have mobility disabilities and are unable to drop, should still cover and hold on. If seated they should cover their head and neck with their arms or a pillow until the shaking stops. Individuals who use wheelchairs should lock their wheels, and cover and avoid transferring from their wheelchair until the shaking stops.

More than 20 million people worldwide are registered to participate in next Thursday’s Great Shakeout drill. Anyone can register their involvement and learn how to participate at www.ShakeOut.org.

FEMA supports Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drills as part of America’s PrepareAthon!, a community-based campaign that asks everyone to take an action—such as a group discussion or disaster drill—to increase their preparedness. Information on America’s PrepareAthon! is available at www.ready.gov/prepare.

Additional tips for preparing for earthquakes are also available at www.ready.gov/earthquakes.

The Great ShakeOut is an annual public earthquake drill coordinated and supported by the Southern California Earthquake Center and the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP). NEHRP is a partnership of the United States Geological Survey, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the National Science Foundation and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The Ready Campaign advocates four universal building blocks of preparedness—Be Informed, Make a Plan, Build a Kit, and Get Involved—and continues to raise awareness about the importance of preparing. The goal of the campaign is to get the public involved and ultimately to increase the level of basic preparedness across the nation.

America’s PrepareAthon! was established to provide a comprehensive campaign to build and sustain national preparedness as directed by Presidential Policy Directive-8. The campaign is coordinated by FEMA in collaboration with federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial governments, the private sector, and non-governmental organizations.



Mergers in the high-tech industry, or any industry for that matter, are usually driven by two factors: financial considerations and market opportunities. When it comes to a mega-merger like the one brewing around Dell and EMC, both factors are kicked into overdrive.

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this week that Dell has stepped up as a potential buyer for EMC (subscription required) which, based on the latter’s estimated market cap of $50 billion, would make it the second largest M&A of the year, behind the Time Warner/Charter Communications deal valued at $78 billion. Negotiations are very fluid, however, with the WSJ reporting that the deal could come together within a week, or not at all. If successful, the deal would eclipse the largest pure-tech deal to date – Avago’s $37 billion buyout of Broadcom. Failure, however, would put EMC in a bad way considering potential buyers like Oracle, HP and Cisco are said to have already passed on acquiring the company.

On the financial side, the big factor is debt, says the New York Times’ Amie Tsang. Dell already has a fairly sizable debt load resulting from owner Michael Dell’s move to take the company private. At a time when equity markets are becoming stingier, an EMC buyout would require a cool $40 billion at least. Part of that could come from selling additional shares of VMware, 80 percent of which are owned by EMC. If Dell were to sell, say, 20 percent of that stake, that would generate about $7 billion to help finance the deal. And, of course, there is the little matter of Elliott Management, the activist hedge fund that owns only about 2 percent of EMC but carries enough clout to quash any deal if it doesn’t feel the numbers add up.



(TNS) - One student was killed and another person was seriously injured after someone opened fire outside a Texas Southern University dormitory on Friday morning, prompting a lockdown at the Houston school, officials said.

It was the second fatal shooting on a U.S. college campus on Friday.

The gunfire outside the University Courtyard dormitory occurred at 11:35 a.m. local time, according to Eva Pickens, the school’s associate vice president of communications.

The dead student was an 18-year-old freshman from Houston, according to Pickens. His identity is being withheld pending notification of his family. The second victim was in stable condition at a Houston-area hospital, she said.

“It’s crazy,” Pickens said. “It’s broad daylight.”



(MCT) - A team of local first responders set out Thursday to do what they do best: rescue the people of Columbia, Tenn. Only this time, they were dispatched to Columbia, South Carolina.

The firefighters — John Hardy, Cody Alexander, Nick Risner, Joey Norman and team leader Eric Hileman — left Tennessee to spend about a week assisting in relief efforts following devastating floods on the East Coast.

“They’ll be working with other water teams, assisting residents in finding a safe place, and doing water rescues,” Columbia Fire Chief Tommy Hemphill said. “This is a second wave of rescue teams. A week is about as long as you want to be deployed.”

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley requested Gov. Bill Haslam send help from Tennessee, Hemphill said.



(MCT) - Last Friday, a day after a gunman killed nine people on an Oregon college campus, Cobb County school police got a tip that a middle school student had threatened to “shoot up” a school.

Officers went to the student’s home. The student denied he made a threat. No weapons were found. No charges were filed.

In today’s world, where school shootings are not uncommon, you have to take threats seriously, explained Ron Storey, the school district’s chief of police. “You never know how it’s going to turn out,” he said.

Authorities at Georgia’s college and public school campuses are constantly on alert for the potential of mass shootings or violence, and they try to prepare themselves. Carroll County officials, for example, were planning an “active shooter” drill this morning at Villa Rica High School.



Research to focus on improved prediction of tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, snow
NOAA awards $5.7 million to improve hazardous weather forecasts (map).

(Credit: NOAA)

NOAA Administrator Kathryn Sullivan announced today $5.7 million in cooperative research agreements and grants to improve the forecasting of hazardous and extreme weather including tornadoes, hurricanes, heavy rainfall, floods and snowstorms.

“These research investments are designed to accelerate the development and use of advanced observing systems, forecast models, and other decision-support tools that will improve our nation’s resilience to hazardous weather,” said Sullivan during remarks at the Society of Environmental Journalists conference in Norman, Oklahoma.

She added, “By engaging with a broad array of academic and other research partners, we aim to improve scientific understanding of these hazardous and extreme weather phenomena to solve the real problems our citizens, businesses, and leaders face every single day. Congressional leadership was instrumental in making these projects a priority."

The funding, provided by NOAA Research, will support collaborative work between NOAA and 27 academic, government and industry research institutions located in 16 states across the nation for these four major programs:

NOAA funding will support research to improve tornado prediction. This photo shows a tornado, which struck Smith, Jasper and Clarke Counties in Mississippi, and Choctaw County in Alabama on April 27, 2011 during a tornado outbreak. (Credit: NOAA).

NOAA funding will support research to improve tornado prediction. This photo shows a tornado, which struck Smith, Jasper and Clarke Counties in Mississippi, and Choctaw County in Alabama on April 27, 2011 during a tornado outbreak. (Credit: NOAA)

Verification of the Origins of Rotation in Tornadoes Experiment in the Southeast U.S. (VORTEX-SE), $1.9 million – a new research program to improve tornado forecasts and warnings in the Southeastern United States, building upon the best practices and knowledge gained from earlier projects in the Great Plains. This new research program will advance our understanding of how environmental factors in the region affect the formation, intensity, structure, and path of tornadoes in this region. The research will also determine public perceptions of tornado risk, the best methods for communicating forecast uncertainty to the public, and differences in the way various demographic groups receive and respond to tornado warnings. This work will not only help inform storm prediction in the southeast U.S., but also in other regions such as the southern Great Plains and Texas.

  • Joint Hurricane Testbed (JHT), $1.4 million – This testbed brings together world-class researchers and forecasters online and in person to develop, test and verify improvements to forecast computer models with the goal of moving hurricane research into day-to-day operations. This year’s funding from the U.S. Weather Research Program (USWRP) will support new projects to better use satellite data to improve computer model forecasts of the genesis and rapid intensification of tropical cyclones, improve analysis tools and the forecast products posted online to inform the public. Projects will also support the transition of a new coastal storm tide forecast model to operational use by NOAA hurricane forecasters.
  • Hydrometeorology Testbed, (HMT) $1.2 million –This testbed focuses on quantifying and forecasting rain and snow, improved forecasting of streamflow and flooding, and improved decision-support tools for NOAA forecasters.  This year’s USWRP funding supports new projects that will evaluate high-resolution streamflow forecast models that provide new uncertainty information, improve representation of cloud droplets and assimilation of other data into high-impact weather forecast models and ensembles of models, and provide new flash flood products for forecaster evaluation.
  • Hazardous Weather Testbed (HWT), $1.2 million –This funding from USWRP will support new projects in this testbed focused on improving ensembles of high-resolution storm forecast models and data assimilation techniques, hail forecasting tools, and estimation of one-hour probabilities of near-term severe weather using real-time environmental data. This could lead to improvements in real-time analysis and forecasting of hazardous weather that accompanies thunderstorms, such as tornadoes, hail, damaging wind, and lightning.

More information about these projects is available online.

NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Join us on , , and our other.



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