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Spring Journal

Volume 30, Issue 1

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Jon Seals

Jon Seals

DENVER – Flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States. Already there are reports of localized flooding in states across the Rocky Mountain region—and the upcoming snowmelt means there is potential for even more serious flooding.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) manages the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) that provides flood insurance policies that provide millions of Americans their first line of defense against flooding.  But those flood insurance policies are only one component of the program and just part of the protection NFIP provides to individuals and the American public at large.

For anyone to be able to purchase an NFIP policy, the only requirement is that they live in a participating community.  A participating community can be a town or city or a larger jurisdiction like a township or county that includes unincorporated areas.  It is up to the community to opt into the NFIP program for the benefit of its citizens.  When joining the program, the community agrees to assess flood risks and to establish floodplain management ordinances.  In return for taking these actions, residents are able to purchase federally backed flood insurance policies.

One of the cornerstones of the NFIP is the flood mapping program.  FEMA works with states and local communities to conduct studies on flood risks and develop maps that show the level of risk for that area, called a Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM).  The FIRM provides useful information that can assist in communities in planning development.  The area that has the highest risk of flooding is the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), commonly called the floodplain.  The SFHA has a one percent chance of being flooded in any given year.  Because of the greater risk, premiums for flood insurance policies for properties in the SFHA are greater than for those for properties outside of it. 

Equally important to knowing the risks of flooding is having a game plan to address those risks.  This is role of floodplain management.  Local communities must comply with minimum national standards established by FEMA, but are free to develop stricter codes and ordinances should they choose to do so.  Key elements of floodplain management include building codes for construction in the floodplain and limitations on development in high risk areas.  Floodplain management is an ongoing process, with communities continually reassessing their needs as new data becomes available and the flood risk for areas may change.

The NFIP brings all levels of government together with insurers and private citizens to protect against the threat of flooding.  Federally sponsored flood maps and locally developed floodplain regulations give property owners the picture of their risk and ensure building practices are in place to minimize that risk.  As a property owner, purchasing a flood insurance policy is a measure you can take to further protect yourself.  To find out more about your individual risk contact your local floodplain administrator. For more information on flood insurance policies or to find an agent, visit www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-800-427-2419.

Monday, 20 March 2017 14:37

Sysadmins: You're All Developers Now

In a past life I was a system administrator, or "sysadmin". I enjoyed it, but even in those halcyon days of remoting into servers and driving to the office at 2 AM (hoping the server room wasn't on fire), I knew I had a limited shelf life. It wasn't until years later that I fully understood why:
 
Administrators are babysitters. The era of tech babysitters is over.
 
In the age of the customer, admins need to be just as dynamic as their developer brethren. That means a hard shift to software-defined infrastructure. It also means using the same tools and processes that accelerate business technology.
 
In other words, you need to become a developer.
 
The good news? You can do it. How do you start?
...

Cyber attackers have already waged attacks on Internet of Things (IoT) devices to build massive botnets and launch crippling distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, knocking websites and online services offline. IT security professionals now fear that the rise of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) could open a dangerous new front in the cybersecurity war.

In a Tripwire survey of 403 technology professionals, administered by Dimensional Research, nearly all respondents (96 percent) said they expected an increase in security attacks aimed at the IIoT this year. Fifty-one percent admitted that they weren't prepared to defend against IIoT threats.

"Industry professionals know that the Industrial Internet of Things security is a problem today. More than half of the respondents said they don't feel prepared to detect and stop cyber attacks against IIoT,” said David Meltzer, chief technology officer at Tripwire, in a statement.

...

http://www.esecurityplanet.com/network-security/security-pros-brace-for-industrial-iot-cyber-attacks.html

Monday, 20 March 2017 14:25

IT Automation: Where, When and How?

The enterprise is anxious to automate as much of its data ecosystem as possible, starting with the cloud. But is automation the best solution for every challenge, and if not, how can enterprise executives determine what should be automated and what should remain under human control?

According to tech journalist Bill Kleyman, cloud automation is one of the key drivers of business innovation. Many organizations have found, in fact, that while the cloud alone is useful in overcoming the challenges of traditional infrastructure – things like lack of scale, poor resource utilization, and the prevalence of data silos ­– problems such as resource management, visibility and cost control persist. Automating management tasks and orchestrating the relationships between resources and workloads can alleviate these issues, plus it accelerates IT management to speeds required of the modern digital economy. So in the end, the enterprise becomes more agile and more responsive to the needs of its users.

A number of platforms have emerged in recent months promising to deliver these results for cloud-facing enterprises. CloudVelox recently updated its One Hybrid Cloud stack that aims to streamline workload mobility across internal and external resources. The system provides a new set of optimization tools, such as application-centric instance tagging, multiple security groups and role-based identity and access management (IMA), plus new system reporting and alert functions to verify successful migrations to the cloud. Additional features, due later this year, are expected to provide autoscaling and elastic load-balancing (ELB) across multiple instances.

...

http://www.itbusinessedge.com/blogs/infrastructure/it-automation-where-when-and-how.html

FatPipe’s SD-WAN platform, in Version 9, represents the first fully integrated and scalable SDN and SD-WAN product on the market

 

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – FatPipe® Networks, the inventor and multiple patents holder of software-defined networks for wide area connectivity and hybrid WANs, today announced its Next Gen SD-WAN platform, version 9, which is designed to further simplify the management of a wide area network in an SD-WAN world and provide load balancing for Layer 2 and Layer 3 networks, eliminating the need for complex routers.

FatPipe’s Next Gen Version 9 SD-WAN platform enables a company to fully integrate its SDN at the data center with the SD-WAN at the branch level, providing the first seamless, scalable SDN + SD-WAN product in the market, with vastly superior capabilities than the current SD-WAN products. Virtual versions are available for Amazon and Azure platforms, along with VMWare and other common platforms.

The advantages of FatPipe’s Next Gen SD-WAN platform are:

  • Layer 2 and Layer 3 support enables routed and switched topologies for true global SDN deployment, bridging the LAN and WAN chasm. It enables low-latency, low-complexity and low-cost deployments.
  • A completely new configuration design supports a web-based interface that automatically scales for all screens: desktop, mobile and tablets. It includes a universal, “single pane glass” visibility across the entire network and a simplified configuration view to easily bring appliances online.
  • New auto-configuration functionality dramatically reduces the complexity of configuring multiple appliances; MPSec, VPN and policy routing rules are propagated to remote/branch devices automatically from a central location, in addition to improved support for legacy routing protocols by adding BGP & OSPF support into the platform.
  • Application visibility and performance provide the ability to manage application flows across the WAN, including increased flexibility in application identification and control over flow direction. A holistic view across the entire network allows for unprecedented and granular application visibility.

FatPipe’s ‘branch in a box’ SD-WAN product combines all aspects of a branch’s requirements, such as multi-line load balancing, firewall, VPN, QoS, local Smart DNS and other features to implement a single solution at a branch. This makes a branch network very simple to deploy. With Smart DNS present in the local branch, should the cloud-based management product, FatPipe Orchestrator, be inaccessible, the local appliances can continue to perform and transmit data. This is significantly more superior to other SD-WAN products.

“Our customers are geographically dispersed around the world and require a comprehensive and deep view across the entire network from branch offices to data centers. FatPipe’s Next Gen SD-WAN platform gives them more control, visibility and a simplified approach to managing and configuring their entire global network so it performs optimally,” said FatPipe’s CTO Sanch Datta. “This upgrade represents a unified management approach that can be delivered as a comprehensive SDN + SD-WAN architecture − regardless of location, appliances, data center network, routing protocols, types of applications, devices used and configurations, including private, public and hybrid cloud models – and eliminates the need for complex routers.”

 

About FatPipe Networks

FatPipe® Networks invented the concept of software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) and hybrid WANs that eliminate the need for hardware and software, or cooperation from ISPs and allows companies to control WAN traffic. FatPipe currently has 11 U.S. patents and more than 180 technology claims related to multipath, software-defined networking and selective encryption of broadband networks. FatPipe technology provides the world's best intra-corporate wide area network solutions that transcend Internet and other network failures to maintain business continuity and high transmission security. FatPipe, with several thousand customers, has offices in the United States and around the world, with more than 700 resellers worldwide including almost all national resellers in the US. Visit www.FatPipe.com.

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FatPipe is a registered trademark of FatPipe, Inc. Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their registered owners.