After a strong spring, the Metro Houston economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic has surged past the halfway mark, according to a major survey released by the Greater Houston Partnership on June 16, 2021.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is forecasting an above average 2021 Atlantic Hurricane season, with the possibility of an extremely active season, on the stormy heels of a record 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic changed the way we do business and education almost overnight with companies and schools shifting a year ago to remote work and learning.
As coronavirus vaccines roll out across the country, many businesses are considering a post-pandemic hybrid workforce approach with employees splitting time between the office and work from home.
Schools are also continuing their new embrace of technology as Houston-area school districts are announcing plans for the 2021-22 school year that feature remote learning and virtual campus options.
In a digital-first world the cost of network downtime for your business or organization is greater than ever. Gartner famously calculated in 2014 that the cost of network downtime to your business was an average of $5,600 per minute or $336K for one hour lost.
Two years later the Ponemon Institute calculated downtime costs rising to $8,851 per minute. How bad can it get? Consider that one-third of enterprises say it costs them an average of $1 million to $5 million per hour of downtime.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of fiber lit buildings in the U.S. expanded in 2020 allowing many businesses to gain a competitive advantage by delivering services and utilizing applications at gigabit speeds.
The 2020 U.S. Fiber Lit Buildings LEADERBOARD compiled by the Vertical Systems Group showed that network providers continued their U.S. footprint expansion of on-net fiber lit commercial buildings even with the challenges of the coronavirus crisis.
Bloomberg News reported May 13 that the Colonial Pipeline Company paid nearly $5 million in ransom to hackers within hours of a May 7 ransomware attack that shut down a key component of the U.S.’s critical energy infrastructure for almost a week.
Bloomberg said, “The company paid the hefty ransom in difficult-to-trace cryptocurrency within hours after the attack, underscoring the immense pressure faced by the Georgia-based operator to get gasoline and jet fuel flowing again to major cities along the Eastern Seaboard.”
One of the advantages of life in the Houston metropolitan area is access to technology such as “metro ethernet” which allows schools, hospitals, government organizations and businesses secure and seamless connections across multiple locations.
Metro ethernet is a popular way for businesses and others to connect to the Internet, to connect to private or public data centers, to multicast delivery for video conferencing, and to connect to the other offices, branches, or satellite locations.
For as much as the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the American economy and general way of life for the past year, it is hard to fathom how our response to the coronavirus crisis would have been with advances across the country in high-speed fiber optic network Internet.
In 2010 when a National Broadband Plan was formulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the average download speed in the United States was a pedestrian 4.1 Mbps.
Life in the Houston area can be a series of hard knocks – from Hurricane Harvey rolling in off the Gulf of Mexico, to unexpected power grid problems in the wake of February’s arctic freeze – but fortunately you can count on an important “NOC” to keep your network up and running.
NOC (pronounced “Knock”), short Network Operations Center, is PS Lightwave’s central nervous system.
We live and work in an increasingly connected world with the digital revolution changing the way we do business forever. While the benefits of the Internet are many and obvious, there are also negatives to this connected world with security threats and cyberattacks targeting companies and consumer daily.
“Security threats are relentless. A cyberattack can cause millions of dollars in damage—to both your company’s bottom line and its reputation,” writes Microsoft in its “Anatomy of a Breach” white paper.