PUBLIC WI-FI

Making the connection

15 March 2017

Most of us now expect wireless connectivity everywhere we go. JAMES HAYES discovers how the network experts are performing miracles to make this happen.

Blackpool’s iconic tower came into its own when TNP needed a high location to install the town’s Wi-Fi equipment.

PHOTO: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Blackpool’s iconic tower came into its own when TNP needed a high location to install the town’s Wi-Fi equipment.

PHOTO: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

The days of the hotspot finder – once invaluable to anyone searching for public Wi-Fi availability at an unfamiliar destination – are numbered.

For anyone wanting to work or play via wireless broadband, the expectation now is that in urban (and many suburban) areas there will be plenty of free-to-use, public Wi-Fi networks that can be easily accessed.

Indications are that the Wi-Fi proliferation has not by any means peaked. Even what existed before is now being expanded as legacy Wi-Fi networks are being upgraded to cope with escalating demand.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Skim through the news pages of Networking+ over the last year or so and you’ll see that Aberdeenshire, Camden, Harrow, Twickenham, Watford, are among just some of the many municipal authorities that are paving their town centre streets with Wi-Fi.

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SECURITY

Protecting the corridors of power

15 April 2015

picture: google data centre

Google recently allowed the media a sneak peak inside its colossal data centres. The company builds its own custom servers and probably has better security than the NSA.

Ask most professionals about the security of data centres and most would agree that everything that can be done to protect customer data is being done. But what, if anything, can be done to stop the most determined hackers?

An unprecedented wave of massive data breaches over the last few years has raised questions about the security and privacy of information held on any computer anywhere on a network, including that which is kept under lock and key at high-security data centres.

One of the most recent high-profile examples is the attack on Sony Pictures, which was hacked in the run-up to last Christmas. Sensitive corporate data, as well as yet-to-be released films, were suddenly made public. The incident led to the now infamous controversy over The Interview, the satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

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BUSINESS CONTINUITY

Weathering the storm

24 November 2014

Stormy weather

The loss of landline connections due to extreme weather has a real impact on businesses that depend on voice and data communications for regular financial transactions.

BRIAN ANDERSON discusses how to maintain critical business network continuity for online transactions.

Severe weather can have severe economic effects. Goldman Sachs has estimated that little more than half of the US economic slowdown was due to bad weather at the beginning of 2014.

Earlier this year, many British businesses also got a taste of how extreme weather could knock out essential services. The loss of landline connections had a real impact on businesses that depend on voice and data communications for day-to-day work and doing regular financial transactions.

Electrical outages also meant systems went offline, adding to the pressure on network and IT managers to reset and reboot routers and computers once power was restored.

 
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