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Winter Journal

Volume 30, Issue 4

Full Contents Now Available!

Public, private and hybrid cloud environments are more accessible than ever, allowing organizations to scale more quickly and efficiently. With more companies migrating to the cloud, concerns for data protection also increase. From safely enabling SaaS applications to securing physical data centers, the adoption of cloud technologies will, in large part, depend on the perception of the cloud as being “safe.”

While cloud technologies offer efficiencies of cost and scale, they also create a challenge in securing the hybrid world of on-premises, platform and cloud security. The reality is that as cloud adoption continues to rise, the value of the data stored within the cloud rises as well, and cybersecurity threats aimed at the cloud will increase in intensity and frequency.

This makes it critical that today’s organizations have a plan in place for hiring elite cloud talent who are prepared tackle tomorrow’s toughtest cybersecurity challenges, because use of advanced cloud technologies will require a security strategy that matches the requirements of cloud products and services themselves.

...

http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/industry-perspectives/hiring-cloud-talent-will-improve-cybersecurity

Thursday, 18 January 2018 16:03

Hiring Cloud Talent Will Improve Cybersecurity

(TNS) — Re-entry after a Category 4 disaster like Hurricane Irma can affect public safety in the form of homes being looted and also hinder efforts to restore utilities, said Monroe County Emergency Management Director Marty Senterfitt.

Senterfitt stood his ground on the mandatory evacuation order that was in place before the Sept. 10 Category 4 storm hammered Big Pine Key and other spots in the Florida Keys. Those who survived unscathed were lucky, he suggested.

"That's like putting a gun to your head and when you win you say, 'I'm smart,' " Senterfitt told a crowd of more than 100 Lower Keys residents at a two-hour meeting Monday night at Keys Community Church.

...

http://www.govtech.com/em/disaster/Florida-County-Officials-Take-Heat-over-Irma-Response.html

Many predictions these days center upon Artificial Intelligence (AI). We are told AI will impact every aspect of society. All facets of our lives will be enriched by AI technology. And of course, AI will pervade each and every element within the data center.

This may be true – eventually. But please note that Spielberg’s “AI” movie came out in 2001. Despite the AI hype, not much has changed in that time. And speaking of 2001, the Kubrick film of that title was released in 1968. Fifty years later, where’s HAL? The best we have is Alexa being able to tell us the weather or play a few tunes.

So let’s get practical about AI in the data center. What kind of tangible impact is it having NOW in terms of storage, applications and security that a data center manager needs to know about? In other words, let’s not worry about future potential – how can AI help immediately in the data center? And what should the data center manager be doing about it?

...

http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/manage/looking-beyond-hype-practical-side-ai-data-center

Family-owned and operated businesses hold a special place in our economy and social fabric. They occupy a large place as well, accounting for nearly 20% of all businesses. One common perception is that this distinct place is safe from employee lawsuits and the need for Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI).

However, the reality told by EEOC litigation and reported settlements is far different. Family businesses are as vulnerable as any other type of organization, for a number of reasons.

...

http://www.genre.com/knowledge/blog/family-businesses-are-sued-by-employees-too-en.html

Welcome to 2018! We’ve already been gearing up to tackle new challenges, more connected users, and an ever-evolving digital world. Many of the broader trends are having an impact on the modern data center. A few key projects that started over the course of 2017 will help shape the data center over the next few years.

In 2018, new solutions and concepts around data center architecture will force business leaders and IT professionals to think differently when it comes to helping the data center run more optimally and create competitive advantages.

Today, we look at those considerations, technologies, and new solutions. Remember, as the data center shifts to support more digital strategies, the business will rely on the capabilities of your IT ecosystem to support new initiatives. As a note, the following technologies are projects that are currently dominating the list. These solutions aim to have the greatest impact without completely disrupting functionality.

With that, here’s the list of data center trends that everyone should be aware of for 2018:

...

http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/manage/be-aware-these-5-data-center-trends-2018

Thursday, 18 January 2018 15:55

Be Aware of These 5 Data Center Trends in 2018

Following the news of Hawaii’s false ballistic missile alert on January 13, 2018, we sat down with crisis & emergency management expert, Kevin Hall, to get his thoughts on what went wrong and why.

To start us off, tell us what happened over the weekend in Hawaii? 

On the morning of Saturday, January 13th, 2018, people in the state of Hawaii received an alert message on their phones that read, “BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.”

The alert went out at approximately 8:07am and was issued by the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA). According to the official report from the state, the activations included the Emergency Alert System and the Wireless Emergency Alert System, but from what I can gather, it seems that the alert was only sent through the wireless medium. It is interesting to note that no sirens were activated as part of this alert. 

How did that happen? What processes are involved in sending an emergency notification of that scale?

...

https://www.resolver.com/blog/false-alarm-in-hawaii/

Before I share the DR problems Evolve IP identified in our 2018 Disaster Recovery Survey I have a couple of writing caveats.

Caveat #1.) I’m not a ‘New Year’s Resolution’ kind of guy

Caveat #2.) I really dislike clichéd content – I don’t need to read “5 Reason’s To Wash My Windows” … I know they are dirty.

Caveat #3.) I often times find myself in the minority J!

So, for those of you that like resolutions and “Top 5” lists I am pleased to present …

 

“The Top 5 Disaster Recovery Resolutions for 2018!”

Click-bait ads coming to the bottom of a news website near you ;)

Now, unfortunately in all seriousness, our survey uncovered some very distressing disaster recovery statistics that need to be addressed by organizations before it’s too late.

 

Resolution #1: Complete your DR plan and implement and test your plan.

Yeah, you’ve heard it before, but just like giving up your penchant for deep fried Twinkies some things never seem to get done and this year’s survey again proves the point! Only 31.5% of our nearly 1,000 respondents (IT professionals and C-level executives) noted that they had a complete DR plan! Perhaps even more alarming, of the 68.5% that did not have a complete plan, four in 10 had a plan that they felt was less than three-quarters of the way complete.

As you can likely imagine, rolling out an incomplete plan to the organization might seem odd and it’s likely causing DR plans to remain on the shelf. Only 2/3rds of respondents had formally implemented their plan in the business.

To continue with the Twinkie bashing, we all know that chowing down on the cream-filled, artery-clogging sweetness could potentially be really bad for you down the road. You also know that having an untested DR plan is bad for your businesses health. Our survey revealed that less than half of the firms had actually tested their DR plan in the last year.

Then again what are the chances your organization will actually need a data defibrillator in 2018…?

 

Resolution #2: Don’t get stuck in denial

Turns out, the chances are pretty high. Based on our survey results you need to change your mindset about DR: it isn’t if a DR incident will occur, but when. Over 1/3rd of participants noted their organization had suffered an incident that required disaster recovery. And while hardware failure was the leading cause of incidents (noted by 50%), deliberate attacks are getting worse and growing faster than any other category.

In 2017, the number of respondents reporting that deliberate attacks had caused DR incidents increased to 17% compared to 13% in 2016 and 6.5% in 2014! You might take all of the precautions in the world against attacks—constantly changing passwords, deploying aggressive security software, implementing secure file sharing and more —but hackers are getting smarter every year and your associates are still human and make mistakes

 

Resolution #3: Treat DR as though you have compliance requirements.

Even if your business does not have compliance requirements, it would likely benefit from acting as though it does. Of organizations that had suffered from an incident that required DR:

  • 43.5% without compliance requirements took more than one business day to recover their IT operations.
  • Just 28% of those with compliance requirements took more than one business day to recover their IT operations.

 

Resolution #4: Fight for your DR budget.

As you’d probably expect, companies that budget sufficiently for DR are more likely to feel very prepared to fully recover from an incident. In fact, 65.5% of those firms noted they felt “very prepared”. Not so much for the under-funded. Just 1 in 5 of underfunded firms were feeling “very prepared” to handle a DR situation.

What sets off the alarm bells here is that four in 10 IT professionals felt that their organization had underfunded DR. Interestingly, three in 10 C-level executives agreed. Couple those numbers with a 33%+ likelihood of a DR situation arising in the future and you’ve got the potential for a major problem!

So, how do you fight for budget? Share some of these survey results with your executive team along with a document that quantifies just how much an outage will cost your business in terms of lost sales and productivity! We created a simple downtime calculator to help you determine what it will cost you.

 

Resolution #5: Evolve Your DR Strategy

Far too many organizations continue to use legacy or unsecure approaches to DR introducing un-necessary risk and greater chances of failure. A couple of statistics really jumped out:

  • 38% of firms relied on servers and hardware at the same location as the rest of their infrastructure
  • 35.5% of firms use tapes for backup 
  • 22% relied on public cloud for DR

 

If you’re relying exclusively, or primarily, on one of the methods above, take the time in 2018 to begin researching other solutions like DRaaS from providers such as Evolve IP or investing in a private, secure, secondary site that is geographically distant from your primary location.

 

Happy New Year! I wish you, your families and associates success and good health in 2018.

To learn more about Evolve IP’s suite of DR solutions visit www.evolveip.net/draas-suite