Network World

Cisco preps now for the hybrid workforce

Network World - Thu, 07/29/2021 - 3:30am

Work-from employees will no longer be treated as a second-class citizen, which means they will get best-in-class technology including SD-WAN appliances, cellular backup alternatives, zero trust security support and maybe even battery backup.

That’s at least part of the plan for hybrid workers now and moving forward, said Cisco’s Todd Nightingale, executive vice president and general manager of the company’s Enterprise Networking & Cloud business. “The ‘return-to-office’ concept is a myth--it’s a world we have left behind.”

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Categories: Network World

Feds' demand for software standards could boost enterprise security

Network World - Wed, 07/28/2021 - 9:56am

Enterprises can look for more transparency from software vendors after the Biden Administration’s recent mandate that software bills of materials be provided by companies attempting to do business with the federal government.

Software bills of materials, frequently abbreviated to SBOMs, aren’t a new concept. The idea comes from the manufacturing sector, where it’s often crucial for buyers to fully understand the components and materials that were used to make a particular piece of equipment.

The 10 most powerful companies in enterprise networking 2021

For example, a train engine might contain parts that aren’t rated for certain levels of vibration stress, making it unsuitable for use on a particular type of track. The goal of an SBOM is similar, listing all the proprietary, open source, and licensed components being used in a particular piece of software, so that a buyer can review it and check whether any of those components are outdated or insecure.

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Categories: Network World

IBM upgrades its Big Iron OS for better cloud, security, and AI support

Network World - Tue, 07/27/2021 - 6:16pm

IBM continues to fine-tune its mainframe to keep it attractive to enterprise users interested in keeping the Big Iron in their cloud and AI-application development plans.

The company released a new version of the mainframe operating system—z/OS V2.5—that includes beefed-up support for containers, AI, and security.

Chip shortage will hit hardware buyers for months to years

According to IBM, applications are at the heart of transactional and batch workloads running on z/OS. Fundamentally, developing new applications while modernizing existing applications is part of the digital transformation occurring in many enterprises.

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Categories: Network World

What is Network as a Service (NaaS)?

Network World - Fri, 07/16/2021 - 7:56am

The day is coming when enterprise IT professionals will be able to order network infrastructure components from a menu of options, have them designed to fit their business needs, and have the whole thing delivered and running in perhaps hours.

The concept is called Network as a Service (NaaS), and it has been around in a number of different forms for a few years, mostly in the service provider arena.

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For enterprises, the as-a-service concept took hold as companies started to embrace cloud computing and its model of consumption-based capacity. In the infrastructure space, for example, more than 75% of infrastructure in edge locations and up to 50% of data-center infrastructure will be consumed in the as-a-service model by 2024, according to research firm IDC.

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Categories: Network World

Ransomware recovery: Plan for it now

Network World - Thu, 07/08/2021 - 6:00am

If your computing environment is subject to a large ransomware attack, you will most certainly be enacting your disaster recovery (DR) plan. But before you begin restoring systems, you must first ensure you have stopped the infection, identified it, and removed it. Jumping too quickly to the restore phase could actually make things worse. To understand why this is the case, it’s important to understand how ransomware works.

How ransomware spreads in your environment

There are many articles such as this one that describe what ransomware does, but it’s important to emphasize that the goal of ransomware is rarely to infect just one system. Modern ransomware variants will immediately attempt to identify and execute various operating system vulnerabilities to gain administrative access and spread to the rest of your LAN. The attack will be coordinated via command-and-control (C&C) servers, and contacting these servers for instructions is the first thing that every ransomware variant does. They key in responding to an active ransomware attack is stopping further communications with C&C servers, as well as further communications between infected systems and the rest of your network.

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Categories: Network World

Don’t let subdomains sink your security

Network World - Wed, 07/07/2021 - 6:00am

If your enterprise has a website (and one certainly would hope so in 2021!), it also has subdomains. These prefixes of your organization’s main domain name are essential for putting structural order to the content and services on your website, thus preventing online visitors from instantly fleeing in terror, disdain, or confusion.

Large enterprises can have thousands of subdomains. IBM, for example, has roughly 60,000 subdomains, while Walmart.com has “only” 2,132 subdomains.

What is DNS and how it works

Whatever value subdomains bring to enterprises--and they bring plenty--they present more targets for bad actors. Why, just last year the subdomains of Chevron, 3M, Warner Brothers, Honeywell, and many other large organizations were hijacked by hackers who redirected visitors to sites featuring porn, malware, online gambling, and other activities of questionable propriety.

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Categories: Network World