Category Archives: Business

IT Disaster Recovery and Tech Trends


As we’ve seen in recent years, natural disasters can lead to long-term downtime for organizations. Because earthquakes, hurricanes, snow storms, or other events can put data centers and other corporate facilities out of commission for a while, it’s vital that companies have in place a comprehensive disaster recovery plan.

Disaster recovery (DR) is a subset of business continuity (BC), and like BC, it’s being influenced by some of the key trends in the IT industry, foremost among them:

  • Cloud services
  • Server and desktop virtualization
  • The proliferation of mobile devices in the workforce
  • The growing popularity of social networking as a business tool

These trends are forcing many organizations to rethink how they plan, test, and execute their DR strategies. CSO previously looked at how these trends are specifically affecting IT business continuity; as with BC, much of the impact they are having on DR is for the better. Still, IT and security executives need to consider how these developments can best be leveraged so that they improve, rather than complicate, DR efforts.

Source: 4 tech trends in IT disaster recovery | Data Center – InfoWorld.

Head over to the source and see how IT disaster recovery is being impacted by each of the four.



Innovations Continue At Symform


Symform, a revolutionary cloud storage and backup service, today announced enhancements to its Cloud Storage Network that improve the performance, security and international capabilities of Symform’s innovative peer-to-peer backup model. The new version accelerates data upload times for large data sets, offers more options for privacy control and supports long file path names and international characters. These features are in direct response to the global adoption of Symform’s Cloud Network by small and medium businesses in 150 countries and the continued explosive growth of digital data needing to be protected and stored.”At Symform, we are constantly searching for new and better ways to serve our fast-growing global customer base by offering a solution that is widely accessible and more affordable than costly, traditional cloud storage models,” said Praerit Garg, president and co-founder of Symform. “We take pride in offering the industry’s first decentralized cloud back-up and storage solution, and are continuing to innovate and perfect that model with each new release.”In a recent Symform survey, respondents overwhelmingly cited the cost of cloud storage as a top concern, particularly among resource-strapped small and mid-sized businesses SMBs. Symform offers a dramatic alternative to traditional ‘data center-reliant’ cloud storage models, using a peer-to-peer network of contributors and consumers that keeps costs to a minimum while ensuring the highest levels of security and reliability.

Source: Symform Continues to Innovate Cloud Storage Network and Peer-to-Peer Model With Faster Data Backup and Enhanced Security & Privacy | Virtual-Strategy Magazine.

One of the keys with technology is to improve and enhance while remaining secure and reliable.  It looks as if Symform is doing that while also keeping their service cost-effective.  Check the source to see what innovations came with the latest release.


Ticketmaster Books a Private Cloud with Cisco

The third largest e-commerce company in North America is moving much of its operations to the cloud.

Live Nation Entertainment, which operates online ticket sales site Ticketmaster and three other entertainment-related businesses, is clouding up its Ticketmaster and Live Nation Concert and Network operations to achieve the efficiencies of virtualization and speed time-to-market with new offerings. The company is in the very early stages of its private cloud implementation, however, so efficiencies are currently difficult to quantify.

But it’s a sizable undertaking. Live Nation has 7,000 employees in 153 offices spread across 18 countries. Its revenue in 2011 was $5.4 billion, of which Ticketmaster accounted for $1.56 billion and other Live Nation operations $3.8 billion.

Source:  Ticketmaster Books a Private Cloud with Cisco

It will be interesting to see the efficiencies once the implementation has been completed.

“4 Simple Growth Strategies Any Breakthrough Blog Can Learn From Pinterest”

Bet you didn’t think that you could get growth strategies from Pinterest.

English: Red Pinterest logo

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You don’t need me to tell you about Pinterest do you? I’m pretty sure you’ve heard all the media outlets singing its praise:

  • the fastest growing site
  • its user base is mostly female
  • its breakthrough rise from obscurity
  • how marketers are using it
  • how marketers CAN use it
  • how its a step forward in the evolution of social media
  • …and etc.

I mean we’ve talked about it over here too, haven’t we?

But what else can we as bloggers and businesspeople learn from this recent phenom?

Read the strategies:  4 Simple Growth Strategies Any Breakthrough Blog Can Learn From Pinterest : @ProBlogger.

How To Add a Google+ Tab/Stream to Facebook Page

So you’re interested in adding your public stream on Google+ to your Facebook Page.  The question is how to go about doing it.

Here’s one way:

You have to add an application into your Facebook page which will create an another tab for showing your Google+ stream into that page. You can also select your Google+ stream inside your page as landing tab by editing the feature of your Facebook page. By adding Google+ Tab into your Facebook page you could gain some more audience for your Google+ Profile or Google+ Page.

Go to the source for step by step instructions.  This process also works for Google+ Pages.

*** Since Google+ has been launched Pages so you can also use your Google+ Page ID Number instead of your Google+ Profile ID Number if you want to show your Google+ Page stream to your Facebook page.

Is this beneficial or do you think utilizing an RSS feed to post directly to the wall of the page would be better?  Keep in mind that the Google+ Tab can be made your default landing page by following these instructions.

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The “Why” For Having a Google+ Business Page

Not long ago, Google+ allowed for the creation of “pages”.  So now you’re on the fence as to whether you want another business page to update.  Here’s some reasoning why you want your business/organization on Google+.

The idea behind the Google business page is that it acts a lot like business pages already found on Facebook. It’s a place for you to explain what your business is all about. You can talk about what you do and how you do it. If you have a brick and mortar business, you can talk about your local area, and how your local business enriches that area. If your business is online, you can share and connect with your clients on your Google+ business page just as you would with a fan page on Facebook. I like to think of your Google business page (and Facebook page, et cetera) as a little mini-website. Condense the most important stuff from your regular website, and that’s exactly what you should be sharing on your Google business page.

When you connect to Google for businesses and create your first page, you gain access to the entire network of people currently using Google+. When you consider how many users Google+ has after only a few months, and how it’s continued to grow since then, that’s a huge number of potential new customers! In all likelihood, many of them haven’t heard of your business before, and at least a few of them will be using Google for businesses to find a company that does exactly what you do! When you create your Google business page, you’ll be able to connect with these people, start a conversation with and the a potential relationship is fostered.

But having access to the entire network of Google+ users isn’t the biggest benefit, at least for small businesses.

The largest benefit to having a Google+ branded business presence is the direct connection to Google’s search results. Try this…type a + sign before a big brand name in the Google search box and guess what? If the business has a branded Google+ page, the branded page will show up immediately.  The more that Google shows your page through other Google searches, the higher your visibility. For many small businesses and their search engine optimization marketing strategies, this could be a HUGE game changer.

Go to the source to see why you should maintain that Facebook page as well.

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Incredible Deal!

Today of course is “Black Friday” and like every retail outlet across America, Host Gator is offering INCREDIBLE savings today only.

If you are in need of  hosting for you website(s), look no further than Host Gator. In case you aren’t aware Host Gator is one of the top recommended hosting sites for WordPress.  And the tech support is awesome, which contributes to the great reputation for hosting WordPress blogs and sites.

Here’s the details:

Save 50% on ALL hosting services

Until 11:59 CST on Friday, November 25 you can get 50% OFF on ALL hosting services.  This includes shared hosting, reseller hosting, VPS hosting, Dedicated servers and Windows hosting!  However, this does not include domain names.

Here’s what that means:

Competitively priced web hosting at Host Gator gets even more competitive!

Shared hosting: As low as $4.95 Now only: $2.48/month (pre-paid)

Reseller Hosting: As low as $24.95 Now Only: $12.48/month (pre-paid)

VPS Hosting: As low as $19.95 Now Only: $9.98/month (First Month)

Dedicated Servers: As low as $174 Now Only $87/month (First Month)

Note that the discount of 50% applies to only the first month on the VPS and Dedicated Servers plans as these are billed monthly.  Also note that this is valid for new hosting plans only so existing customers can’t use it on plan renewals (though you could add a plan to your account).

So head on over to Host Gator  to get in on this GREAT hosting services deal.


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“Private cloud” skills

Diagram showing three main types of cloud comp...

Image via Wikipedia

Great piece over at the CompTia blog regarding the “private cloud”:

What is the “private cloud?” Well, it’s where the IT department is where the company itself provides all of the cloud-based services, but from within its own firewall. Remember when the term “Intranet” was coined to describe how IT could provide the best Internet-based services behind the firewall? Private cloud computing is basically the same sort of approach. Again, some folks think that private cloud computing is an oxymoron. Like Eric Knorr over at InfoWorld, I think the definition of the “private cloud” is a bit fuzzy, but it’s worth talking about.

The private cloud involves virtualized services offered as a service independent of any single hardware platform, usually through a Web browser. When offered privately, cloud services remain behind the firewall, and they are offered on a metered basis. This means that the IT department becomes the “X as a service” provider.

As well as skills that one should have to be an expert in the “cloud”:

If you want to become a private cloud computing expert, check out the following skills you should learn:

  • Understand business issues, including the concepts of the Service Level Agreement (SLA), and chargeback. Yes, chargeback. Yeah, it’s kind of a weird word. The first time I heard it back in 1997, I thought someone was talking about some sort of new defensive lineman position for the NFL. Basically, chargeback means metering services and then charging departments, making your IT department a business within your business. This way, your IT department becomes less of a cost center and more of a revenue generator, in a sense. Pretty cool idea if you can get it to work.
  • Know how to read a bill from a cloud provider, no matter which side of the firewall it comes from. From the people I’ve talked to, the numbers change pretty radically
  • Learn virtualization.
  • Get some consulting skills.


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Garden Security

Check out what securing a garden from rabbits has to do with this?

The lesson, my friends, is that breaches are never truly over. You may have recovered and gone back to business, but there may still be a subtle back door in your network. The information that was lost still has to be accounted for and damages repaired. The lessons learned only build on previous lessons learned and contribute to the overall improvement of your security program. The recovery and lessons-learned stages may be the final stages of handling an incident, but, to borrow upon a favorite phrase of mine, eternal vigilance is the price of security.

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Is SecureID broken?

Considering the lack of information coming from the RSA is it a fair assumption?

It’s been a week since RSA dropped a vaguely worded bombshell on 30,000 customers that the soundness of the SecurID system they used to secure their corporate and governmental networks was compromised after hackers stole confidential information concerning the two-factor authentication product.

For seven days, reporters, researchers, and customers have called on RSA, and its parent corporation EMC, to specify what data was lifted – or at the very least to say if it included details that could allow government or corporate spies to predict the one-time passwords that SecurID tokens generate every 60 seconds. And for seven days, the company has resolutely refused to answer. Instead, RSA has parroted Security 101 how-tos about strong passwords, support-desk best practices, and the dangers of clicking on email attachments.

It comes down to two simple questions.

Were the individual seed values used to generate a new pseudo-random number exposed and, similarly, was the mechanism that maps a token’s serial number to its seed leaked?

Without the answers to those two basic questions, RSA customers can’t make educated decisions about whether to continue relying on SecurID to prevent unauthorized logins to their sensitive networks. After all, if the breach on RSA’s servers exposed the seeds and the mapping mechanism, SecurID customers have lost one of the factors offered by the two-factor authentication product.

Go to the source to read more on this important issue regarding network security.



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