Saturday Jan 20

Posts Tagged ‘Industry’

InfoSec Life Lessons from Dr. Seuss- keynote debut and BruCon
Last Updated on Wednesday, 3 December 2014 08:56
Written by jj
Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

Recently I had the pleasure of unveiling my new keynote, “InfoSec Life Lessons from Dr. Seuss” at the BruCon conference hosted each year in Gent, Belgium. The event is absolutely amazing, extremely well-managed, features some of the best speakers, and offers actionable content. The energy and collaboration was off the charts and I would highly recommend any colleagues to attend this conference if given the opportunity.

title slide Dr Seuss

The opportunity to share a new message was a key point of my excitement at this conference. For the first time, I stepped completely outside of my comfort zone of technical content and in to a realm of virgin leadership territory. It was terrifying, exhilarating and I’m so happy to share it with you here. The full video presentation is available on YouTube in its entirety. Some anecdotal scenes are detailed below by timestamp. (more…)

Redefining NAC: The Series
Last Updated on Saturday, 28 January 2012 06:46
Written by jj
Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

An Introduction to the Redefining NAC Series

One of the great things about this industry is the opportunity it affords us to regularly interact with colleagues and peers to share ideas, learn and bounce ideas around. Recently I’ve been engaged in several of these types of conversations regarding NAC and where the market and technology is headed. (more…)

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The Problem with a Booming Industry in a Looming Economy
Last Updated on Friday, 26 December 2008 02:13
Written by jj
Friday, December 26th, 2008

As most of my readers know, the company I work for (you know, the day job) is what we call a VAR (value-added reseller). In addition to providing a line of products, we also provide services- integration, consulting and training.

We’re lucky. Or maybe I should say fortunate, for having positioned ourselves to be successful, even in a struggling economy. As I look around over the past few months, I’ve seen a plethora of friends and colleagues (at other companies) that have suffered the brunt of the blow- lost jobs, decreased benefits and dwindling retirement and savings. Businesses are closing, restructuring or cutting back, and it’s affecting everyone.

But our business– in the IT, and specifically the security industry– is strong. In fact, it’s thriving! We just recently almost doubled our full-time staff, adding more technicians, engineers and account reps to our core team. Great, right? Of course.

However, there’s a nasty little side effect that’s about to smack us all in the face.

In these times of struggling financial organizations, financing and credit are quickly morphing from a ‘given’ of business to a luxury that’s becoming harder to earn. Companies that could once float $1M deals through credit lines and distributor relationships are losing many of their finance options.

What does that mean? It means when your company sends in a $500k purchase order, your provider may not be able to process the order because they don’t have that much open credit available. Ultimately, it can mean delayed fulfillment, partial orders or not being able to process the order at all. Providers may resort to gray market items or ‘suspicious’ sources to fill orders they can’t process through normal channels.

Not a happy thought and this type of behaviour may force customers to revert to using ‘box pushers’ who frequently don’t have the expertise to help integrate the solutions or even specify the right products. It could ruin some smaller providers. And when the technology specialists out there go away, it puts a much greater strain on the manufacturer, who will then need to ready additional resources to supplement both pre- and post-sales expertise missing when their fair-haired ‘chosen few’ are sudden casualties of economy.

It also means that special programs such as eRate for schools and libraries will suffer. The federal monies returned to the school actually goes through the provider, or VAR. So, when a school places an eRate project order with a provider, the school usually pays the entire amount then waits for the federal eRate rebate to come back through, weeks or months later. If that provider is gone when the check comes back, the school will never lay eyes on it (or anything else for that matter).

Sad. Worse still, these funded projects are usually some of the largest dollar-wise. Who pays for it then? We all do… And eRate is just one example of a funded program, there are many others that could have the same fate, which is why it has always been imperative for public sector to use providers and VARs with a proven longevity.

Like I said, we’re fortunate. We saw this coming and made arrangements early in anticipation of this domino effect of financial yuckiness about to fall upon us all. But I worry about others in the industry, partner companies who may fall victim to this credit crunch. A long wave of financing issues could change the face of the security VAR landscape, and not in a good way.

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NAC’s Polymorphic Paradigm
Last Updated on Saturday, 28 January 2012 07:06
Written by JJ
Thursday, March 27th, 2008

The recent post on ‘What’s holding back NAC’ elicited some great replies, both public and private. One comment, from Todd over at Napera brought up a great point regarding the ‘origins’ of NAC as we know it.

While all the innovative start-ups were working steadily on a new generation of security solutions, a majority of the industry’s big dogs jumped on the NACwagon, riding the buzzwords by simply re-branding a current technology as NAC. (more…)

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What’s holding back NAC?
Last Updated on Saturday, 28 January 2012 07:07
Written by JJ
Saturday, March 22nd, 2008

We’ve all been watching some of the pioneering NAC vendors domino down over the past several months. The Lockdown tumble has some questioning the industry again, and as Alan notes, these happenings fuel the fires of NAC’s nay-sayers. (In my opinion, it’s like throwing metal onto open flame… may affect the metal, won’t feed the flame, makes for great steaks). (more…)

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