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Summer Journal

Volume 28, Issue 3

Full Contents Now Available!

Monday, 03 August 2015 05:00

How Do You Know What To Say?

Written by

FEMA is requesting stakeholder feedback on working drafts of four of the five Federal Interagency Operational Plans (FIOPs):  Protection, Mitigation, Response, and Recovery. The Prevention FIOP is Unclassified and For Official Use Only (FOUO)/Law Enforcement Sensitive (LES), Restricted Access and therefore available to appropriate personnel through separate and secure communication means. The FIOPs describe how the Federal government aligns resources and delivers core capabilities. Each FIOP outlines the concept of operations for integrating and synchronizing existing national-level Federal capabilities to support the whole community.

This update of the FIOPs focuses on discrete, critical content revisions, and confirming edits as a result of comments received on the National Preparedness Goal and National Planning Frameworks. Additional changes in the draft are the result of the lessons learned from implementing the FIOPs and recent events, as well as the findings of the National Preparedness Report.  The FIOPs and feedback submission forms may be found at http://www.fema.gov/ppd-8-news-updates-announcements">http://www.fema.gov/ppd-8-news-updates-announcements.

To ensure all feedback is properly handled, reviewers are asked to use the provided feedback submission form to submit feedback and recommendations. Please provide any comments and recommendations, using the submission form, toPPD8-Engagement@fema.dhs.gov byTuesday, September 2, 2015 at 5:00 PM EDT.

If you have any questions, please contact FEMA’s Private Sector Division at(202) 646-2600 or at FEMA-Private-Sector@fema.dhs.gov. Follow FEMA online at http://www.fema.gov/blog">www.fema.gov/blog, http://www.twitter.com/fema">www.twitter.com/fema, http://www.facebook.com/fema">www.facebook.com/fema and http://www.youtube.com/fema">www.youtube.com/fema.  Also, follow Administrator Craig Fugate's activities at http://www.twitter.com/craigatfema">www.twitter.com/craigatfema. The social media links provided are for reference only.  FEMA does not endorse any non-government websites, companies or applications. 

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.

Cloud adoption and cloud-based file sharing are becoming increasingly popular among the general public and private use of cloud services within organizations is causing concern among CIOs. Unfortunately, IT organizations are having a hard time keeping up. According to an article from Business Cloud News, a recent survey conducted by Fruition Partners of 100 UK CIOs found that 84 percent believe cloud adoption reduces their organization’s control over IT.

However, it isn’t the cloud itself that is causing organizations to feel a lack of control. The cause of most CIOs anxiety comes from Shadow IT.

...

http://mspmentor.net/infocenter-cloud-based-file-sharing/080315/msps-survey-finds-cios-concerned-about-cloud-control

The hackers responsible for the Anthem and U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) data breaches recently may have attacked United Airlines as well.

And as a result, United tops this week's list of IT security news makers to watch, followed by the University of Connecticut (UConn), Franciscan St. Francis Health and the HAMMERTOSS malware.

What can managed service providers (MSPs) and their customers learn from these IT security news makers? Check out this week's list of IT security stories to watch to find out:

...

http://mspmentor.net/managed-security-services/080315/it-security-stories-watch-was-united-airlines-breached

Technology is not enough in the fight against cybercrime, effective cybersecurity measures require policy and process changes as well.

That’s the takeaway from an analysis of cyber-risk spending included in the 2015 U.S. State of Cybercrime Survey recently released by PwC.

While cybersecurity budgets are on the rise, companies are mostly reliant on technology solutions to fend off digital adversaries and manage risks.

Among the 500 U.S. executives, security experts and others from public and private sectors responding to the survey, almost half (47 percent) said adding new technologies is a spending priority, higher than all other options.

...

http://www.iii.org/insuranceindustryblog/?p=4134

For those MSPs contemplating the build-versus-buy question with regards to offering backup and disaster recovery (DR) as a service, be careful when it comes to the purchase and management of storage. Get it wrong and you could end up with a money pit.

A useful analogy is the home. Suppose a couple is looking at whether to buy a house or build their own dream house. The latter option would require buying a parcel of land, working out the plans, obtaining the necessary city permits and going to Home Depot repeatedly for an endless list of materials. With the basic elements on site, now comes the hard part. Digging the trenches, cutting the steel rebar to erect the framework in which to pour the concrete, then adding the walls, doors, windows, plumbing, electrical and many more details--any one of which could trip up the home owners and add time to the project.

Like the distraught home buyers who end up looking like they are in a remake of Tom Hanks’ “Money Pit” movie, many such projects run way over budget and are delayed by many months, if not years. Only if the homeowner has a broad do-it-yourself (DIY) skillset, or has generous contractor friends, does this method have any possibility of success.

...

http://mspmentor.net/blog/private-vs-public-cloud-avoiding-money-pit-storage-capacity

NORTH LITTLE ROCK – Federal assistance may be available to help Arkansas communities rebuild infrastructure to higher, more disaster-resistant standards and state officials are encouraging local governments to take advantage of that funding.

The assistance to communities is part of the aid that became available following the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding during the period of May 7 to June 15, 2015.

“Generally, the federal Public Assistance program restores disaster damaged infrastructure to pre-disaster conditions,” said Nancy M. Casper, federal coordinating officer for the Federal Emergency Management Agency. “But when cost effective and technically feasible, it makes sense to rebuild to higher standards that can prevent future loss.”

FEMA’s Public Assistance program provides federal funds to reimburse a minimum of 75 percent of the costs for removing debris, conducting emergency protective measures and repairing levees, roads, bridges, public utilities, water control facilities, public buildings and parks. Mitigation funding may be considered in each project category.

Eligible applicants may include:

  • state agencies

  • local and county governments

  • private nonprofit organizations that own or operate facilities that provide essential government-type services

"Studies show that every $1 paid toward mitigation saves an average of $4 in future disaster-related costs,” said State Coordinating Officer Scott Bass of the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management Agency. "By adding mitigation money to repair costs, our goal is to reduce or eliminate damages from future disasters.”

As part of the process for applying for federal assistance, experts from ADEM and FEMA help identify projects that will qualify for the special mitigation program. Officials urge applicants to take advantage of the funds.

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.

The SBA is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners, and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling (800) 659-2955, emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov  or visiting SBA’s website at www.sba.gov/disaster. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call (800) 877-8339.

Is London prepared for climate change?

London’s businesses are ill-prepared for climate change risks as 54% of FTSE 100 firms have no business adaptation strategy in place for climate change. Evidence suggests that 60% of small and medium sized businesses have no plan in place to deal with extreme weather conditions.

The UK capital’s status as a global city makes its economy increasingly vulnerable to climate change, not only facing extreme weather like flooding, drought, heatwaves in the city itself, but also imported risks through the insurance sector, overseas investments and international supply chains. This is according to the new ‘Weathering the Storm’ report by the London Assembly Economy Committee which looks into the impact of climate change on London’s economy in terms of risks and opportunities.

Jenny Jones AM, the report author and former Chair of the Economy Committee, said: “Too little is being done to understand and prepare for the potential costs of climate change. London faces a great unknown when it comes to how our supply chains and economy will be hit by extreme weather events. For example, the damage from the 2011 floods in Thailand, where IT component parts are made, meant much higher prices across the global IT industry, including in London. A much worse situation would be if too many harvests failed and affected our food supply.

It’s no secret that the field of emergency management is not overly diverse. The typical emergency manager is an older white male. This lack of diversity is rooted primarily in the profession’s evolution. Many of the first emergency managers came from police, fire or first responder backgrounds, which for a long time were largely white, male-dominated fields in most parts of the country.

“Most emergency managers traditionally came from a pretty narrow slice of the professional world,” said Joe Partridge, disaster recovery business continuity manager for CareOregon, a nonprofit involved in health plan services, reforms and innovations. “Even as recently as the late 1990s, emergency management director positions were almost always located within a police or fire department and typically staffed by either a retired or close-to-retired person from a first responder background — typically 55 years old or older and a white male.”

Carmen Merlo, director of the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management in Oregon, has been working in emergency management for 18 years. “It’s often the case that I’m the only female in the room,” she said. “I still go to conferences where literally all of the panelists are white men.”

...

http://www.emergencymgmt.com/disaster/Changing-of-the-Guard.html