The Role of Telco Companies in the Cloud

It has been observed that Telecommunication companies are now moving to the cloud. The Telecom companies are now being driven to the cloud revolution by economic necessity. These companies are putting themselves into the cloud in such as way that shows their network assets as well as other network related capabilities. In addition, Telecom companies have been observed to be taking their place in the cloud and ceasing the opportunity to provide oodles of services including retail services for organizations, software developers that based on consumer applications and also in building network controlled services. These processes help the companies to enhance their business models making it easy for them to play vital roles in supply chain of cloud services.

Then, you may like to ask about the roles Telecom companies do play in the cloud — data backup and cloud computing services. You may like to know whether they are not just providing themselves opportunity to get their own share of the profit or they have important contribution to make in the cloud network. Telecom companies are the major providers of cloud service. These companies were said to have been in the cloudspace for many years through their sheer tenant which they normally use to render their services like: network enabling services and dial tone for both intra and inter switching, as we as other routings that make connection between point to multipoint connectivity possible, IP telephoning, Audio conferencing and others. For that reason, you should not be surprised to see them transforming the the network from just wires and cables to a globally optimized applications.

There are lots of benefits which telecom brought into the cloud revolution and some of the benefits include: High availability and scalability services based on inexpensive models. In addition, these companies normally make use of anchored data centres to manage functionality of users, and centralize services using a service delivery model known as front-end cloud. Really, Telecom companies define quality levels, optimize on the use of resources, as well as provide multiple services to multiple customers.

Telcos have definite contributions in the cloudscapes categorically. Telco’s can anchor themselves in either Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) or Platform as a Service (PaaS) and they have the ability to monetize their network by selling on wholesale. These telecommunication companies can come up as full service telecommunication companies using a data centre footprints. With the use of data center footprints, service delivery platform Telco’s can handle oodles of services, including creation, distribution, as well as management of the infrastructure and other application-oriented capabilities of organizations, consumers, SMBs, prosumers and partners. In fact, there are more to what Telecommunication brought to the cloudscpace than listed on this article. Therefore, the cloud is expected to provide Telco’s with both opportunities and challenges.

How to Avoid Data based Cyber-Crimes

If you want to take pleasure in the comfort and relaxation you have created for your organization and yourself, you need to have good sense of self-defense. It is true that you need not to panic or visualize your enemy running and following you always, it is important for you to be conscious of precarious enemies that can occupy your environment to harm your data and other confidential information in your organization. For that reason, you have to always be prepared to deter enemies and protect yourself and your environment against any form of attack. While your digital data is transferred across the Internet, you have to be aware of the hostility agencies responsible for Cyber crime as they can easily pose threat to the safety of your digital data.

The major cause of Cyber crime is often pure unprofessionalism of employees. Thousands of Internet devices like laptops and mobile devices loaded with confidential information get lost every year. The problem is that the majority of these lost laptops and mobile devices are not protected with hard drive encryption or even anti-theft software. In addition, some employees often share passwords with each other and even with their co-workers that are not originally granted access to the password simply because of their ignorance about the value of the data in their procession. Some employees normally go as far as using file sharing tool to share files with contractors and suppliers. The worst of all is that some employees may unkindly create data branches for either retribution or for personal gain.

At times, there can be threat to the security of your data by some of the employees that have left your organization. An Ex-employee whose right and privilege has not been deleted or removed from your computing system can easily exploit the information either for personal benefit or to the advantage of competitors. Disgruntled ex-employees can go as far as infecting your computing system with malware and virus so as to corrupt, modify or even change the entire data stores of your company. You can easily avoid this by ensuring that you remove the right or privilege you gave to any employee when he or she leaves your organization.

Though, threats from external data are rare yet, they cannot be overlooked while considering the Cyber crime that can affect your data. Information transmitted over your network can easily be hijacked by eavesdroppers by listening at open ports. Your data can be susceptible if you store them to a third party Internet based cloud backup provider. This can easily happen when their system is compromised, access is granted to unauthorized personnel by employees, the provider goes bankrupt or drop their servers maybe due to financial difficulties or other similar reasons. And you need to know that your data can be vulnerable when you share them over the Internet.

So, there is a need for you to be careful and security conscious about Cyber crimes. You need to make some required safety precautions to protect and safeguard your data.

Some of the ways to protect your data against Cyber crimes include:

Educating your employees about the need for data protection,
Encrypting data in while in flight and at rest,
Interviewing and auditing users activity logs, as well as other activity logs,
Ensuring adequate user management of data, and
Giving adequate and frequent attention to data against any form of data crimes.

What Are the Environmental Standards For Data Centre?

If you are assigned a design project for a data centre, it is essential to follow environmental standards for developing ideal conditions in offices and buildings. There are five environmental standards necessary for data centres:

Temperature Control
University of Toronto* researchers found out that servers do not necessarily sweat at higher temperatures. In fact, heat can cut the consumption of energy that is associated with cooling equipment. This finding actually supports yet another research by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers’ (ASHRAE)**, who decided to increase recommended data centre temperature range from 20-25 degrees Centigrade to 18-27 degrees Centigrade. If particular type of server hardware is used, it is easy to control effects of temperature on equipment. Recently, new variety of heat resilient hardware have hit the market, having the capacity to work with no problems at 10 degrees warmer environment.

Humidity Control
It is foremost priority of data centres to keep humidity level in control. CRAC unit gaggle is perfect for constant airflow all through the room. Units work to pull in heat, cool it down and then pushing out through vents towards server. ASHRAE suggests 60% humidity level for 5 to 15 degrees Centigrade. When humidity level is too high, it generates water that could damage server hardware. Data centre designers need to design systems that have the capacity to detect water and humidity present in the surrounding area of equipment.

Monitoring of Static Electricity
Static electricity is one of the most serious threats in the data centre environment. Sensitive IT equipment could get damaged partially or completely with a 25 or less Volts discharge***. If issue is not resolved, the company could face problems, such as system crashes, dropped calls and data corruption. To check static electricity, there are specific equipments that are usually installed in positions where static electricity charges are largest.

Fire Control
Fire control is one of the essential environmental standards of data centre. In Virginia, e-commerce giant became fire victim**** in the beginning of 2015. Fire started on the roof top, and as a result, no injuries or damage were reported to Amazon Web Services. Fire protection system is part of the data centre standards. To get peace of mind, fire control system must be checked on regular basis to make certain that it works in emergency situations.

Systems for Physical Security
Physical security is an important part of environmental standards. Operators are directed to design a plan to keep unauthorized members away from server rooms, buildings and racks. Deploying security guards is not enough for physical security. There must be surveillance IP systems and latest sensors to inform relevant personnel when unauthorized party enters in server racks or building.

Data Centre Centralized Environment
Environmental standards make monitoring of data centre a very challenging task. Centralized systems that incorporate applications and software for server management, and that are capable of overseeing all features from one central location, is much preferred.

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Backup, Storage and Hardware Requirements when Considering SaaS

SaaS (software as a Service) is software delivery process that permits to access data from various devices by using web browser and Internet connection. SaaS is changing backup, storage, and hardware requirements. It is the job of software vendors to maintain codes, databases and servers that represent the application.

In SaaS model, notable hardware changes occur in server closet. SaaS is given to customers running web browser and operating system to get access to required services. If your workers execute only one task by using web browser, IT is capable to scale back specifications of the computer. It is a bit risky as employees get help from various programs to carry on their job. Most of utilized programs need local resources like advanced graphics, processing power and storage. For instance, users select Autodesk and Adobe to design projects on desktop. Later on these projects are uploaded to cloud to carry on data analysis. What is more critical is massive file size that is troublesome to move even if clients have fast Internet connection.

It is often noticed that SaaS providers presume that companies are given cloud storage by default. IT professionals are well aware that data storage in the cloud is very practical, but it is not acceptable when companies need to store very sensitive information.

Google Docs and Gmail are the two options to signify how companies can store their information in the cloud. Gmail users believe that their contacts, calendars, and emails are stored in the cloud. On the other hand, Google Docs are synchronized between local drive and Google’s servers; therefore, it is not obvious where the document is actually being saved.

Here question arises, is it possible for SaaS customers to trim down storage on laptops and desktops by using small and fast SSDs? Answer is not definite. If customers are using a product with offline mode, they can save data in cloud as well as locally. Conversely, when office type docs are designed that require only small space, one can get away with a smaller local storage.

Hosting companies offer backups and maintenance to SaaS customers. What is important for customers is to get an idea of data type for backup and how frequently data will be used.

Backup keeps old data that is still important for the company and used for compliance. Businesses are required to comply and maintain data retention laws. It is highly important for public companies. Due to complicated nature of the compliance law, the industry has attracted a huge number of compliance professionals and lawyers, who are eager to help companies achieve their and are giving their data retention and security goals.

Millions of companies depend on SaaS providers to run applications. However, applications keep data saved in internal databases. Though it has extended the SaaS definition, it demonstrates the tremendous pressure that forces companies to keep sensitive information safe from data breaches.

It could be confusing for workers to move between local backup and online clouds while working on their workstations. Employees must know in detail where the data is present and how to get access to information. That is where the duty of SaaS providers gets started.

Facts Behind Re-Purposing Outdated Hardware

Hardware failure is not a day to day issue for most of users. If, however, hardware failure happens on constant basis, you must need to think about it seriously. Due to hardware failure, important files and folders can be lost. Survey about hardware failure is conducted to discover ratio in IT departments.

In past, almost 99% of IT experts faced troubles due to hardware failure;
At time of data loss, above 70% IT professionals have given their services to clients;
80% are of the view that hard drive is the basic reason of hardware failure.

Hardware failure affects business continuity. Many companies are using old hardware, and this could cause hardware failure. It is concerning why computer users have old hardware. When a piece of equipment completes its life span without getting out of order, why it is used until it stops working completely? How long, do you expect a hardware to continue to work? How do you use old equipment?

IT professionals state that re-purposing of hardware gives a number of benefits to users. However, at the same time, there are some drawbacks associated with re-purposing. If you have made up your mind for re-purposing hardware, consider these facts:

Time Span for Hardware
IT professionals agree that it is good to re-purpose a machine that is used for few years. However, parts such as thermal paste, battery, RAM and fans should be swapped. Five years old hardware is good for home use, such as media server. Conversely, it will create troubles if much older machine is re-purposed for production. IT experts recommend that old hardware should not be used as production machines.

What is the Purpose?
Most of users select old hardware either for testing or storage purposes. As far as storage is concerned, you can perform a few things with old hardware. It can be used for backups, as well as for shared storage. Whatever is your target, it is good to keep copy of backup data to use in critical situations. On the other hand, old equipment is good to use for testing purpose in laboratories like virtualization, training or any other purpose. If hardware is old, it does not mean it is useless.

Consideration before Re-purposing Hardware
Everyone wants to get benefits from hardware as long as it is in working condition. Nobody wants to throw away hardware equipment just for the reason it has covered its expected life span. As compared to other equipment, computer hardware are highly superseded; therefore, users do not need to get in trouble for re-purposing, repairing or refurbishing. IT professionals note that repair and ownership cost may result in waste of time and effort.

Recycling is another form of re-purposing hardware. Visit local electronics that accept old computer hardware or you can also try to design some thing new using the old hardware. You can find interesting projects online for old computer components.*

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What is Distributed Denial of Service Attack?

DoS & Its Types
Denial of Service (DoS) occurs whenever a website stops to offer services. Denial of services is the result of some attack or presence of too many online visitors on a specific site.

There are many kinds of attacks that disable a system. In some cases, peer-to-peer software is used to corrupt the firmware. Among all types of attacks, Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack is most common. DDoS brings a lot of traffic to a website that is impossible to handle. Networked computers are used by hackers to bring a flood of traffic to disturb business continuity. As website is designed to handle a limited number of customers’ requests at a time, it crashes when flooded with too much traffic.

DDoS Attacks Frequency
DDoS attacks occur on frequent basis. According to Wikipedia, DDos occurs on an average of 28 times per hour. What is more ironical is an increase in the number of attacks on regular basis.

Who are DDoS Attackers?
There are many reasons that compel hackers to use distributed denial of service attack. One cannot pin down exact reasons and who the attackers are. It is believed that DDoS attacks are used by competitors against a business as deceitful tactic.

Objectives behind DDoS Attacks
Attackers use DDoS attacks to get ransom money. Companies are warned to pay an amount, otherwise their system will crash. Once company pays the given amount, it becomes the target of hackers for long term. On the other hand, companies that refuse to pay the ransom suffer due to hindrances in business continuity and downtime, which means to shell out for system recovery and their business reputation.

Sometimes, DDoS attacks are the result of a protest. When hacker groups have conflict with the actions of certain groups, they attack their websites to show reaction. There are many hackers that just use these attacks for the sake of pleasure or to cause trouble for others.

Companies Affected by DDoS Attacks
Steam, Sony Playstation Network, and Xbox Live Network of Microsoft are some of the significant companies that are affected due to DDoS attacks. Side by side large scale companies, small companies are harassed by these attacks because they do not have preventive measures to mitigate the effects.

Unintentional DDoS Attacks
DDoS attacks can be accidental. It may happen that a lot of visitors have found something interesting on a website (video, picture or article) and visit the site at the same time. Website might not be ready to handle an increase in number of visitors, therefore, the system stops to give service any more.

DDoS Attacks are Expensive
Nuestar reported* that DDoS attacks cost more than $100K in an hour for almost 29% businesses. Due to these attacks, customer support centre was affected more than any other department.

In a nutshell, businesses must have an influential plan for DDoS and business continuity. Best practices should be used to reduce the number of DDoS attacks. As a result, the affects of downtime on clients and business can be controlled.


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