Predictive Analytics and Virus Research Have More in Common Than We Think

July 20, 2017
By Jessica Weber

analytics graphic lightbulb

The Internet of Things (IoT) encompasses many avenues and aspects of modern technology and life. Our devices have enabled us to become a more connected society because they have been designed specifically to connect to one another. But with this connection comes many challenges. As data is shared between the ever-expanding network of "smart" devices, we have to look at how we can protect that data in ways we haven't previously had to.

What is IoT?

The Internet of Things is basically a network of connected devices. Or as one Forbes writer excellently described it: "...the concept of basically connecting any device with an on and off switch to the Internet (and/or to each other). This includes everything from cellphones, coffee makers, washing machines, headphones, lamps, wearable devices and almost anything else you can think of. This also applies to components of machines, for example a jet engine of an airplane or the drill of an oil rig.". When we talk about IoT, we're talking about the revolution of technology-driven smart devices that have changed the way we live, work, and play. As more and more devices are developed and connected, there are just as many questions and issues that come into...

Read on...

Alert Logic: A Better Approach to Security

July 6, 2017
By Alert Logic Evangelism Team

alert logic logo

Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how their technology on the CenturyLink Marketplace provides customers with low-friction solutions to solve complex business challenges. This edition's guest provider from the Marketplace Provider Program is Alert Logic.

Businesses' top priorities are to provide a service that meets the needs of its customer base, grow in their respective markets, generate revenue, and protect their investments. Ensuring that your company has an adaptive and comprehensive security model is one of the best ways to protect the company’s investments, data, customers, and reputation.

Security threats are nothing new and only continue to evolve, getting harder to detect and eliminate. To ensure that a business is continuously secure takes time, effort, resources, and expertise. This can be a challenge for companies who are trying to manage their security posture while still supporting the day-to-day business operations. IT infrastructure is more dynamic than ever, with on-premises data centers, cloud and hybrid environments, and an ever-changing threat landscape. Without a clear line of sight into your entire infrastructure environment, how can you protect your data and applications from compromise?

A Better Approach to Security

Alert Logic's Security-as-a-Service offering...

Read on...

Demystifying Digital Transformation

June 29, 2017
By Jonathan Townsend

digital transformation

What does a Digital Transformation look like?

Organizations everywhere are embarking on Digital Transformations — going beyond simple automation and cost savings to reach into new areas, revolutionizing their business models and discovering new growth opportunities by taking advantage of leading-edge technologies to conduct business differently. In doing so, they’re enhancing their processes, their value propositions, and their relationships with both internal stakeholders and external customers.

Innovative enterprises continue to lead the way by pursuing new solutions for digital innovation. For example, large retail companies used to rely on physical stores to showcase, house, and ultimately sell their product a decade ago. However, that industry underwent a complete Digital Transformation, ushering an e-commerce boom that demanded new platforms, processes, and standards were developed to take full advantage of digital technologies that are easy to use, deploy, patch, and maintain.

Leading companies invest heavily in developing a sound Digital Transformation strategy, and the quality of that strategic approach is paramount to the overall success of transforming a business.

Even as the IT industry is rapidly evolving, it's important to keep in mind that Digital Transformation is less of a sprint and more of a marathon. To maximize the efficiency of their digital strategy, companies must...

Read on...

Announcing the Launch of the CenturyLink Cloud Node: DE3

June 22, 2017
By Matt Schwabenbauer

CenturyLink is excited to announce the launch of our newest European public cloud node: DE3. This announcement increases our global footprint to 16 locations, including four in Europe and two in Germany.

DE3, which is physically located in Frankfurt, Germany, is an example of how CenturyLink Cloud is increasing its worldwide infrastructure presence. CenturyLink global customers now have more options when planning their IT strategy, including the ability to optimize the distance between their cloud workloads and end users.

Customers hosting workloads in our existing German site (DE1) now have the ability to strengthen their Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery strategies in DE3, while adhering to German data sovereignty policies.

A core focus at CenturyLink is to help our customers through their digital transformation. Visit our location page to see how our services can help plan your business around the world.

de3.png

CenturyLink Cloud enables customers with an easy-to-use interface, compelling value-for-performance and integrated managed services. This provides our customers with the business agility they want from a cloud provider, while delivering the security and scalability they need to host mission-critical enterprise applications.

While not available at launch, our Bare Metal Servers and next generation Object Storage products will also be offered in our DE3 location...

Read on...

Security Made Easy with FlexSecure

June 8, 2017
By Sid Prasanna

flexsecurelogo

Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how their technology on the CenturyLink Marketplace provides customers with low-friction solutions to solve complex business challenges. This edition's guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Sid Prasanna, CEO, at FlexSecure.

Passwordless Authentication Made Easy

FlexSecure solves a unifying problem -- the need to dynamically secure access to resources and data, based on the user and their level of authorized access. Many solutions exist for granting access in a static way, but no easy-to-use solution exists that can adjust the security authentication requirements in real-time, based on dynamic factors in the security equation.

By adding FlexSecure to their existing authentication or access control systems, organizations can adopt multi-layered authentication options. Multi-layered authentication enable organizations to add significant levels of security to protect their data from hackers and prevent unauthorized access.

FlexSecure is a flexible user authentication platform, providing Passwordless and Pin-based authentication, without the need to install an application. This platform enables organizations of all sizes to mix and match appropriate user authentication methods to protect applications on their Cloud, Mobile, and IT infrastructure. The FlexSecure platform is easy and secure and offers...

Read on...

WannaCrypt Ransomware Malware Announcement from CenturyLink Cloud

May 25, 2017
By Christine Sala

On May 12, 2017, Microsoft issued a statement confirming a number of their customers had been affected by the malicious WannaCrypt ransomware malware. CenturyLink has taken steps to ensure our Cloud environment has the latest patches and is monitoring for any additional related vulnerabilities.

If you believe your organization is impacted we recommend all CenturyLink Cloud customers take the below steps to further secure your environment:

  • Install Microsoft Security Update MS17-010 to address the vulnerabilities by correcting how SMBv1 handles specially crafted requests. Details here: https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/security/ms17-010.aspx
  • Confirm that anti-malware is deployed and updated and work with your provider to confirm you are protected.
  • Ensure the following IP ports (TCP 139, TCP 445, UDP 137 and UDP 138) are blocked at the firewall unless essential to your operations.
  • If you have any questions or concerns, please contact cloudhelp@ctl.io

    ...

    Read on...

    Vormetric Live Data Transformation – Boldly Going Where No Encryption Has Gone Before

    May 11, 2017
    By Eric Wolff

    Thales-logo

    Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how their technology on the CenturyLink Marketplace provides customers with low-friction solutions to solve complex business challenges. This editions guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Eric Wolff, Senior Product Marketing Manager, at Thales e-Security. Thales e-Security acquired our long-term partner Vormetric earlier this year.

    Downtime – nobody likes it. Unplanned downtime is almost always expensive. A 2015 report from IDC even revealed that for the Fortune 1000, the average total cost of unplanned application downtime is $1.25 billion to $2.5 billion per year.

    Planned downtime is also a pain. Before I was in the security business, I marketed network solutions that were “bumps on the wire” which required planned downtime for deployment. There were ways to minimize or even reduce the downtime, but they were complicated.

    These same downtime obstacles present themselves with encryption. There's a great return on investment (ROI) – you can sleep better knowing that data thieves get nothing they can use (and how happy you’re making the compliance team). But, for enterprise-class encryption, there’s almost always a planned downtime period while tens of thousands of files or...

    Read on...

    Leveling Up Your Digital Transformation with CenturyLink & Dynatrace

    April 25, 2017
    By Nathan A. Treska

    Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem. This editions guest author is Nathan A. Treska, Director Global Strategic Alliances, at Dynatrace.

    Building Strategic Alliances

    2017 marks the 9th year of partnership between CenturyLink and Dynatrace. It’s been an amazing journey together, but what’s next you may ask? Good question… both companies continue to evolve and innovate, because if we don’t, customers and the competitive landscape will evolve around us before we know it! The mission of our alliance is to help our customer’s applications perform to their maximum business objective, via the execution venue that fits each customers respective business demands. Ensuring application performance for new initiatives is one of the most critical steps for any digital transformation.

    As the complexity of applications and platforms continues to grow and cloud adoption continues to expand, IT teams are rethinking how they monitor and manage their distributed, web scale applications and dynamic infrastructures. Application performance drives customer experiences, employee productivity and revenue – making a comprehensive application monitoring and management strategy increasingly critical for every organization.

    Digital transformations accomplish the most dramatic change in status for businesses. With digital technology driving the business, you can move faster, serve...

    Read on...

    Top 3 Ways to Update Your IT Infrastructure in 90 Days

    March 20, 2017
    By Daniel Morton

    Reading Time: about 5 minutes

    The cloud should create choices, not limit them. The business needs of your company should not be restricted by the feature sets offered through one competitor versus another. We live in an on-demand, location-diverse, fully-connected world. All digital initiatives require a platform which can adapt and respond to varying business demands.

    CenturyLink brings a true hybrid computing model to our customers, built on years of experience operating datacenters, applications, and networks. One key enabler of these benefits is the CenturyLink® Enterprise Cloud Platform, which has helped our IT services evolve into an anytime, anywhere set of offerings. Our focus on automating the “Hybrid IT Stack” - managed workloads, datacenter infrastructure, and network connectivity – enables our customers to focus on total solutions that add transformative benefits over time.

    digital-transformation.png

    Here is how David Shacochis, VP of Product Management for Hybrid IT Services describes our Hybrid IT delivery platform: Our focus is on helping customers transform their IT operations through a cohesive set of services that span cloud, network, and management. We’ve seen how this can overcome obstacles to digital transformation that the pure-play platforms cannot erase on their own. Click here for the full article. As a single-source...

    Read on...

    Preventing Customer-Impacting Incidents Using the Power of Data

    February 13, 2017
    By Ryan Kirk, PhD., Principal Data Scientist, CenturyLink Cloud

    data_science2.png

    A previous post discussed our approach to real-time anomaly detection. Recalling that for every unique stream of data, we predicted what the actual value should be. Then, if an actual value was different than our expectations, we flagged it as anomalous. Combining this anomaly detection approach with our real-time, faceted dashboard allows analysts to easily pinpoint areas of the cloud infrastructure that behave peculiarly.

    This article expands on anomaly detection and dives into further detail on how to use data to detect and prevent customer-impacting events from taking place. Additionally, we’ll discuss how we further automate the analysts’ search process, determine the presence of customer impact, and integrate our predictions within the rest of the business to facilitate resolution. This post will cover:

    • The similarities and differences in the lifecycle of data science and that of system architects
    • How we detect the presence of unknown events
    • How to determine whether an event is potentially impacting
    • How to integrate this information into business’ operations

    The Lifecycle of Data Science

    There are at least as many definitions of data science as there are data scientists. At its core, data science requires both data and science. This means that these professionals are intimately familiar with extracting, cleaning, processing, and analyzing data....

    Read on...

    Skynet - Urgent Incident Automation

    January 24, 2017
    By Jessica Weber & Chris Welkenstein

    computer screen

    Reading Time: About 6 minutes

    Our Customer Care team at CenturyLink Cloud® is unconventional in many ways; one way is their use of internally-built automation that make their tasks simpler and more productive. They've got a whole list of scripts, tools, apps, and bots that they have developed to aid in their efficiency. The team has created these tools so that they can spend more time helping customers instead of performing repetitious tasks; their continuous improvement process helps them increase their pace and decrease their customer's time to resolution. One of these many tools is Skynet, a Slack bot and tool developed to orchestrate and handle the urgent incident requests received by the team.

    Incident Identification

    So, what classifies as an urgent incident? The accepted definition at CenturyLink Cloud is any incident that affects two or more customers or an entire product or service. These incidents are considered urgent because they have the capacity to affect a large amount of functionality for customers. The incidents take top priority with the Customer Care team responding throughout the incident to keep customers informed of the working status in a timely manner.

    The Skynet bot was designed to officially announce and prepare these incidents by automating all...

    Read on...

    Mastering the Digital Customer Experience at Dynatrace Perform 2017!

    January 17, 2017
    By Bob Stolzberg

    digital customer

    Dynatrace, a CenturyLink channel alliance partner, is hosting the largest peer-to-peer digital performance management event in the world, Perform 2017! Taking place February 6th–9th in Las Vegas, the event provides organizations a platform to explore how to transform their businesses and an opportunity to learn from top leaders in the digital performance and customer experience arena. The event includes 75 speakers, 60+ hands-on training sessions, and in-depth education and certification opportunities. Perform’s jam-packed thought leadership agenda includes industry-leading speakers who will share their expertise and provide how-to ways to help you shift your business to the cloud, master digital complexity, create waves within your industry, and, most importantly, delight your users and customers!

    Attendees at Perform 2017 will learn:

    • Performance and architecture validation with continuous integration

    • Gaining business intelligence via PureLytics and big data

    • Advanced eCommerce monitoring – Performance and business metrics

    • Super charge your public cloud performance management

    • Uncover your path to digital performance excellence – Six steps to success

    And more!

    Master Your Cloud Application Universe with Dynatrace and CenturyLink

    CenturyLink is a proud diamond sponsor of Perform 2017. Our subject matter experts will be on-site covering...

    Read on...


    Connect

      Follow us on


    Start Your Free Trial

    High performance, fast deployment times and intuitive management capabilities that will push your business forward

    *We will send a SMS message to verify your account, standard rates apply.