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Odyssey offers ClearSkies SaaS cloud-based integrated security services


Odyssey Consultants is a PCI QSA, ISO 27001 certified infosecurity, infrastructure and risk management solutions integrator, and a managed security and outsourcing services provider. Founded 2002, it has since evolved into a regional leader in managed security and outsourcing services.

ClearSkiesOdyssey’s range of solutions and services lie within a four-phase information security continuum, such as test and access, design and implement, monitor and respond, and outsourcing. According to the company, information security management involves the development, deployment, and ongoing monitoring and review of a combination of preventive, detective, and response processes and controls.

Odyssey is offering the ClearSkies security-as-a-service (SaaS) line of cloud-based integrated security services. ClearSkies platform has the necessary tools that enable the organizations reap benefits of the cloud without compromising on infosecurity.

The first of the ClearSkies series of services offered by Odyssey is the security information and event management (SIEM). SIEM provides organizations an adequate infrastructure in-house, with the opportunity to gain such capability in the cloud. ClearSkies is enriched with the vast know-how, expertise and intelligence of the latest threats and vulnerabilities that come right out of Odyssey’s Ithaca Labs. It transforms the service into a powerful information security tool for the client.

Odyssey also offers managed security and outsourcing (MSOS) services. Key benefits include:
* Enhanced 24/7/365 protection and monitoring of network, systems and security components.
* Continuous log analysis and correlation of events with real-time incident escalation.
* Focus internal resources on core organizational competencies.
* Threat analysis and access to security advisories issued by Ithaca Labs team.
* Minimized mean time to restore/recovery (MTTR) capability by proactive indentification of Internet threats.
* Retention of logs collected in a secure environment, helping clients meet regulatory compliance without needing to deploy costly and complex reporting tools and processes.
* Low TCO by eliminating the need to recruit, train and retain an in-house security capability.
* Notification of in-scope devices outage that impacts log collection.
* Access to MSOS secure portal for reviewing real-time alerts, published incidents and generate reports.

Odyssey has offices in Cyprus and Greece, and is exhibiting at the Gitex 2013 show in Dubai.

SEP 2 IP-based energy management for home


What exactly is smart energy profile (SEP 2) IP-based energy management for the home? Introducing the SEP 2, Tobin Richardson, chairman and CEO, ZigBee Alliance said ZigBee smart energy is the standard of choice for home area networks (HANs).

ZigBeeAbout 40+ million ZigBee electric meters are being deployed. ZigBee smart energy is being enhanced by network/communications options, support for forward-looking developments, etc. SEP 2 is a joint effort with the HomePlug Alliance. There is a vision of MAC/PHY agnostic SmartEnergy profile.

Robby Simpson, SEP 2 Technical Working Group Chair, system architect, GE Digital Energy, provided the features and benefits of Smart Energy. Features include price communication, demand response and load control, energy usage information/metering data, prepayment metering, text messaging, plug-in electric vehicles, distributed energy resources, billing communication, etc.

Example applications are many, such as smartphones, ESI in the sky, tablets, TVs, plug-in electric vehicles, PCs, solar inverters, thermostats, energy management systems, smart meters, building management systems, smart appliances, etc. There is support for a variety of architectures. The use of IP eases convergence and architecture changes. A consortium for SEP 2 interoperability (CSEP) has been established.

Skip Ashton, ZigBee Arch. review committee chair, senior apps director,  Silicon Labs said implementations of SEP 2 are available from a number of companies and across several MAC/PHYs. All standard documents are available for review.

Jeff Gooding, Southern California Edison (SCE), spoke about creating SEP 2 energy ecosysyems. SEP 2 can bridge multi-platform customer technologies to create a rich ecosystem. SEP 2 customer focused solutions can allow the utilities and energy service providers to use any customer communication channel. SEP 2 pilots at SCE include a gateway pilot and a smart charging pilot. Both are separate pilots.

Coto announces MEMS based magnetically operated switch


Stephen Day.

Stephen Day.

According to Stephen Day, VP of Technology, Coto Technology has the number 1 share in reed relays and relay products. The Coto brand is associated with the broadest portfolio, best in class quality, dedicated technical support, and a provider of innovative solutions. He was speaking at the ongoing 13th Globalpress Electronics Summit in Santa Cruz, USA.

Coto has announced the RedRock, a new MEMS based magnetically operated switch. The RS-A-2515 is the world’s smallest wafer level packaged magnetically operated reed switch. It consumes zero power, measures 2mm3 in footprint and switches at less than 0.3W. It delivers high reliability and surface mount package.

The small footprint means use of less PCB real estate, no operate power means a longer battery life. The low switching power leads to higher reliability. The high directionality leads to resistance to stray fields. Hot switchable feature leads to higher reliability.

Together, Coto has managed to combine the best of two worlds — traditional reed switches with MEMS processing. There is high aspect ratio microfabrication (HARM). This is the first commercially available switch. It produces structures that generate strong contact closure forces. The forces are many times greater than the previous MEMS based magnetic switches. It also enables hot switching up to several hundred milliwatts.

HARM is the key to making it all possible. The benefits are many, from temperature rise vs. carry current, to RedRock contact life test, 1V 1 mA hot-switched load. RedRock allows for small size, zero power consumption and high power switching.

At the moment, Coto is leveraging RedRock into high growth applications. In the future, Coto will integrate sensor solution as well. RedRock’s unique combination of features include reed — no power and high current, and MEMS — no power and small size, as well as GMR/Hall — small size and high current — to deliver the RedRock, which features no power, small size and high current.

Nominum launches world’s first purpose-built suite of DNS-based solutions for mobile operators


Late last month, Nominum launched the world’s first purpose-built suite of DNS-based solutions for mobile operators at the Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona Spain.

Doug Miller, GM, Mobile Solutions, Nominum, said that Nominum has been in the mobile space for many years now. The news at MWC was to announce the new Nominum Mobile Suite, which takes the lessons learned and best practices from working closely with the top mobile providers in the world to craft purpose-built solutions designed to solve very specific mobile provider needs.

He added: “With the demand on mobile networks at its highest and only growing by the day, mobile providers face specific issues their fixed line counterparts simply do not. For example, the concept of spectrum efficiency is a mobile issue and something Nominum can help with via solutions crafted around our core engines, platforms and applications. There are other examples like this built on both network and subscriber needs.”

DHCP and DNS core engines
So, what are the DNS and DHCP core engines all about? According to Miller, typically when people think of core engines such as DNS and DHCP, the need to respond to queries and enable basic mobile routing and provisioning come to mind. These engines were considered single-purpose network functions. Nothing more, nothing less. However, although these functions are still vital, beyond the base requirements, there are a number of considerations that must also be taken into account.

At the base level, these engines must be considered for latency and availability to ensure the fastest and most reliable network services. Without considering this, the network may have lower performance or potentially become unavailable in its entirety. Further, the concept of network orchestration must be considered. Without these engines, mobile networks simply do not work. This is very different from fixed networks that are not as reliant on DNS as mobile networks. In the case of mobile, there are a number of control plane functions that must be considered.

Arguably more important than these functions is the ability to deliver business-impacting solutions. The concept of spectrum efficiency was already mentioned, but consider the ability to report on customer and network activity. This is a function that was simply never considered when talking about DNS and DHCP. However, with these elements in place, an entirely new world of reporting and analytics is opened up without the need for additional hardware components being added to the network that create additional complexity or add new risks.

Similarly, these engines can also be the basis for subscriber affinity solutions that generate new revenue and add a new dimension to the battle on churn by creating stickiness not possible previously. Simply put, DNS and DHCP can and should be leveraged for more than they have been historically for true business value. Read more…

Global forecast estimates based on WSTS’s May semicon sales: Cowan LRA model


This is a continuation of my coverage of the fortunes of the global semiconductor industry. I would like to acknowledge and thank Mike Cowan, an independent semiconductor analyst and developer of the Cowan LRA model, who has provided me the latest numbers.

The WSTS posted May 2011’s HBR, Historical Billings Report, on its website on Tuesday, July 5th, 2011.

According to the WSTS’s HBR, May’s actual sales came in at $23.494 billion with the corresponding May 3MMA sales at $25.031 billion. It should be noted that two months experienced slight downward sales revisions from last month’s published HBR, namely March (down by $0.147 billion) and April (down by $0.112 billion), respectively.

The Cowan LRA model’s sales forecast estimates for May as published last month were $24.565 billion (actual) and $25.474 billion (3MMA), respectively. Thus, the model’s May MI (Momentum Indicator) came in at minus 4.4 percent.

This indicates (mathematically speaking) that the semiconductor industry’s actual May sales result was much lower than the model’s expectation by $1.071 billion and that, most probably, 2011’s sales growth will be trending downward for the rest of this year.

Plugging the latest actual sales number for May into the model yields the following updated sales and sales growths forecast estimates for 2011:

Global semicon sales monthly update based on Cowan's LRA model.

Global semicon sales monthly update based on Cowan's LRA model.

The key take-aways from comparing the latest versus previous month’s forecast results are highlighted below:
* 2011’s sales forecast estimate fell by $3.937 billion to $318.391 billion (from last month’s sales forecast estimate of $322.328 billion).
* Correspondingly, 2011’s sales growth forecast estimate dropped by 1.3 percentage points to 6.7 percent (from last month’s 8 percent sales growth forecast estimate).
* June 2011’s actual sales forecast expectation is $29.435 billion which corresponds to a June 3MMA sales estimate of $25.445 billion assuming no (or minor) sales revisions for either April or May’s previously published actual sales from last month.

Next month’s forecast update based upon June’s actual sales are expected to be available on or about Friday, Aug 5th, 2011.

Cowan LRA model: Global semicon sales forecast based on Oct. 2010 actual sales


This is a continuation of my coverage of the fortunes of the global semiconductor industry. I would like to acknowledge and thank Mike Cowan, an independent semiconductor analyst and developer of the Cowan LRA model, who has provided me the latest numbers.

Cowan has provided the latest monthly sales forecast update. Note that the latest sales forecast results capture not only the last quarter of 2010, but also provide the model’s “take” on 2011. On Sunday, 12-05-10, the WSTS posted the October 2010’s global semiconductor sales report (Historical Billings Report, HBR) on its website.

Therefore, with the WSTS having released its actual Oct. 2010 global semiconductor sales number, Cowan is sharing the latest monthly update to the Cowan LRA Model’s derived forecast numbers. The latest sales forecast estimates for 4Q and 2010 “decreased” from last month’s forecast estimates as summarized and discussed below.

Additionally, Cowan has extended the model in order to provide a “first look” at sales and sales growth estimates for each of the four quarters (and full year) of 2011.

October semicon sales
The actual Oct. 2010 global semiconductor sales released by the WSTS came in at $24.550 billion which is:
* 10.7 percent higher than last year’s (2009) actual October sales of $22.181 billion;
* Down 15.3 percent from last month’s (September) actual sales of $28.981 billion (Note – revised downward by $0.391 billion from last month’s WSTS published sales number of $29.372 billion for September);
* And lower (by $0.593 billion, or down 2.4 percent) compared to last month’s (September’s projection) sales forecast estimate for Oct., that is, $25.143 billion;
* Thus, the Cowan LRA Model’s Momentum Indicator, MI, went less negative (rose to -2.4 percent) compared to last month’s more negative posture (at -6.5 percent).

Note: November 2010’s Sales Forecast Estimate is projected to be $25.566 billion. Read more…

Cowan LRA model: Global semicon sales forecast update based on Aug. 2010’s actual sales


This is a continuation of my coverage of the fortunes of the global semiconductor industry. I would like to acknowledge and thank Mike Cowan, an independent semiconductor analyst and developer of the Cowan LRA model, who has provided me the latest numbers.

This Monday, (10-04-10) the WSTS posted the August 2010 global semiconductor sales report (Historical Billings Report, HBR) on its website. Therefore, with the WSTS having released its actual August 2010 global semiconductor sales number, Cowan has provided the latest monthly update to the Cowan LRA Model’s derived forecast numbers.

The updated sales forecast estimates for 3Q, 4Q and 2010 decreased very slightly from the previous month’s forecast estimates as summarized below.

The actual August 2010 global semiconductor sales published by the WSTS came in at $25.358 billion which is:
* 30.8 percent higher than 2009’s August sales of $19.175 billion;
* Up 3.2 percent from last month’s (July) sales of $24.570 billion;
* And lower (by $0.090 billion, or down 0.35 percent) compared to last month’s (July’s projection) sales forecast estimate, that is, $25.448 billion;
* The Cowan LRA Model’s Momentum Indicator, MI, went slightly negative (-0.35 percent) compared to last month’s plus posture (at +5.0 percent), as discussed below.

Cowan’s momentum indicator
August 2010’s actual semiconductor sales (of $25.358 billion) came in slightly lower (by $0.090 billion) than the model’s last month’s August 2010 sales forecast estimate (of $25.448 billion) representing a minus 0.35 percent delta comparing August 2010’s actual sales number (published by the WSTS) to the projected forecast estimate “put forth” by the Cowan LRA forecasting model and reported last month. This percent delta represents the Cowan LRA Model’s MI.

The MI is defined as the percent difference between the actual sales for a given month — in this case August 2010’s just published actual global sales of $25.358 billion and the forecasted sales estimate for August 2010, that is, $25.448 billion, which was calculated and published last month.

The MI can be either positive or negative and is a measure of the percent deviation of the actual monthly sales number from the previous month’s prediction derived by the model’s linear regression analysis of the past 26 years of historical, actual monthly global “sales experience” as gathered and published, each month, by the WSTS.

Note: September 2010’s sales forecast estimate is projected to be $31.402 billion.

Latest monthly update
Cowan's LRA model.

Cowan's LRA model.

The latest monthly update to 2010’s global semiconductor sales forecast estimate as determined by the Cowan LRA forecasting model notched down very slightly to $305.406 billion corresponding to an updated projected 2010 year-over-year sales growth forecast estimate of 34.9 percent.

These latest forecasted 2010 sales and sales growth estimates decreased marginally from last month’s (July) reported sales and sales growth forecast estimates of $305.729 and 35.1 percent, respectively.

Thus, the full complement of the latest, updated sales and sales growth forecast estimates for 3Q, 4Q and 2010 are detailed in the table immediately below along with the 1Q’s and 2Q’s actual reported sales numbers.

The second table shows the corresponding results from last month’s model run in order to compare the sequential forecast estimate numbers, namely August versus July. Read more…

Global semicon sales forecast estimates based on Cowan’s LRA model


This is a continuation of my coverage of the fortunes of the global semiconductor industry. I would like to acknowledge and thank Mike Cowan, an independent semiconductor analyst and developer of the Cowan LRA model, who has provided me the latest numbers.

Here are the latest forecast results for 2010 global semicon sales estimates associated with the forecasting model — the Cowan LRA model for predicting worldwide semicon sales.

The World Semiconductor Trade Statistics (WSTS) today (6-02-10) posted the April 2010 actual sales numbers on its website. Consequently, this is the latest update to Mike Cowan’s forecast results as gleamed from running the Cowan LRA forecasting model incorporating the “actual” April sales.

The actual April global semiconductor sales as released by the WSTS came in at $23.385 billion, which is up 43 percent from last year’s April sales of $16.354 billion and down 11.9 percent from last month’s sales of $26.553 billion, (which was revised upward slightly from last month’s published sales of $26.533 billion).

Therefore, the latest updated 2010 sales number predicted by the Cowan LRA model is $301.865 billion corresponding to a year-over-year sales growth of 33.4 percent for 2010.

These latest sales and sales growth are up from last month’s reported forecast estimates of $294.981 and 30.3 percent, respectively. These upward results reflect the relatively strong April sales as reported by the WSTS.

The full complement of the latest sales and sales growths forecast estimates for 2Q, 3Q, 4Q and 2010 are summarized in the table below along with 1Q’s actual numbers.

Source: Cowan LRA Forecasting Model.

Source: Cowan LRA Forecasting Model.

Additionally, the May 2010 global semiconductor sales forecast estimate is projected to be $22.743 billion, which would yield a May 3MMA sales forecast estimate of $24.227 billion, which is normally published by the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) each month in order to characterize the semiconductor industry’s growth posture.

Reputation based security protects you from malware


(L-R): Shantanu Ghosh, VP, India Product Operations, Symantec and Joe Pasqua, VP, Research, Symantec.

(L-R): Shantanu Ghosh, VP, India Product Operations, Symantec and Joe Pasqua, VP, Research, Symantec.

Information is everything in today’s connected world! According to Joe Pasqua, VP, Research, Symantec Corp., there are 487 exabytes of data globally, growing at 51 percent annually.

Speaking about the innovative work being done at Symantec Research Labs, he said, it was the Labs’ endeavor to bring together technologies and products in new and interesting ways and help solve problems. “We have a customer centric approach to innovation,” he said.

Symantec Research Labs develops cutting edge technologies to solve real-world customer challenges in security, storage and systems management. It does core research, advanced concepts and collaboratve research.

According to Pasqua, reputation based security changes the manner in which you can protect yourself from malware. It was noticed a number of years ago that there were more of malware. “So, we decided to create a reputation score for every piece of software.”

Symantec Research Labs has an extensive and successful track record. These include core security technologies such as reputation-based security and Browser Defender. Other areas include consumer cloud services, infrastructure software, etc. Pasqua provided a sneak peak of the Symantec Mobile Reputation Security (SMRS) research prototype as well.

More details in a while.

Categories: malware, Security, Symantec

Global semiconductor sales forecast: Cowan’s LRA model (based on Nov. 2009 sales data)


This is a continuation of my coverage of the fortunes of the global semiconductor industry. I would like to acknowledge and thank Mike Cowan, an independent semiconductor analyst and developer of the Cowan LRA model, who has provided me the latest numbers.

Here are the latest forecast results for 2009 and 2010 global semiconductor sales estimates associated with the forecasting model — the Cowan LRA model for predicting worldwide semiconductor sales.

The presently updated global semiconductor sales forecast estimates are based upon the recently published November 2009 actual sales numbers released by the WSTS (posted on its website on Jan 4, 2010).

The table below details the latest, updated forecast numbers covering the next five quarters, that is, from 4Q09 through 4Q10, respectively, as well as for the full years of 2009 (including 4Q09) and 2010.

NOTE – This is the last forecast for 2009 since next month’s sales data from WSTS, namely for Dec 2009, will “wrap up” the year (2009 will become history!) and the model will “shift focus” to 2010 forecast expectations and beyond!

As the table below shows, the latest updates for years 2009 and 2010 chip sales forecast estimates increased by +1.9 percent and +0.5 percent, respectively, to $222.1 billion and $236.5 billion compared to last month’s sales forecast estimates of $217.9 billion and $234.0 billion, respectively.

The updated 2009 and 2010 chip sales forecast estimates correspond to yr-o-yr sales growth forecast estimates of -10.6 percent and +6.5 percent, respectively, which represent a continuing improvement compared to last month’s sales growth prediction of -12.6 percent for 2009 but, however, no change from last month’s same sales growth forecast estimate of +6.5 percent for 2010.

Table Summarizing Latest Cowan LRA Model’s Sales & Sales Growth Forecast Estimates For The Next Five Quarters

Cowan's LRA Model: Sources: WSTS / SIA (Actuals); Cowan LRA Forecasting Model (Forecast Estimates).

Cowan's LRA Model: Sources: WSTS / SIA (Actuals); Cowan LRA Forecasting Model (Forecast Estimates).

Remember that the model is dynamic, that is, is recalculated each month as the year plays out; therefore today’s latest, updated full year sales growth prediction will not sit still but will evolve over the coming months.

Additionally, the model also projects a sales forecast estimate for next month, namely for December 2009. Thus December’s (actual) sales forecast estimate is projected to be $20.023 billion, which corresponds to a 3MMA (three Month Moving Average) sales forecast estimate of $21.28 billion as is normally published by the SIA. Read more…

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