Mitigating Hybrid Cloud Security Risks

By Paul Mazzucco, TierPoint Chief Security Officer

When a business considers moving its workloads to the cloud, availability of resources is often one of their biggest concerns. Understandably, they want their data and applications to be available when they need them, whether they choose a private cloud, a public cloud, or have TierPoint host their cloud in one of our data centers.

One of the greatest threats to high availability is the Denial of Service attack or DoS. This form of cyber threat has been with us since the late 1990s, so most of you are probably familiar with it. In short, a DoS attack floods a network with traffic, rendering it useless.

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In more recent times an even more insidious type of attack has emerged: Distributed Denial of Service or DDoS. In the DDoS, cybercriminals take over devices connected to the net, even simple devices such as online security cameras, to create a botnet, an army of mindless devices all targeted at bringing down a single network. Continue reading

Designing an HA/DR Strategy for SQL Server 2016

By Mike Donaghey, DBA Services Manager

To ensure business continuity in the face of a power outage, natural disaster, or equipment
failure, it’s important to consider your high availability (HA) and disaster recovery (DR) strategy. HA minimizes the odds of a disruption from malfunctioning equipment or service failure, while DR is your plan for getting up and running after a disaster.

Developing an HA and DR strategy can be challenging.  Microsoft’s SQL Server 2016, like most other major databases, offers several possible HA/DR options, but which you choose will depend on your company’s requirements for recovery and the details of your IT infrastructure, as well as which edition of SQL Server you have. Microsoft provides a comprehensive comparison chart of the High Availability features of SQL Server 2016 editions here.

To help you understand your options, Matt Aslett, Research Director for Data Platforms and Analytics at 451 Research, and I reviewed many of the key considerations and capabilities around HA/DR plan and SQL Server 2016’s HA/DR capabilities in this recent webinar:

Register now: On-demand webinar_SQL Server: Understanding Your Options for Disaster Recovery & High Availability Continue reading

Why Being an Introvert in IT is a Good Thing

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By Jeff Bertocci, SVP Service Delivery

The natural personality traits of many introverts can make them a different breed of communicators, especially for the extroverted salesperson or the high-powered executive. But, recently, I ran across an article from Business Insider that listed five benefits of being an introvert:

#1 Rapport building

#2 Ability to listen

#3 Thoughtfulness and caring

#4 Self-reflectiveness and error-correction

#5 Depth vs. breadth (of relationships)

If you think about it, all five of those attributes are useful in an IT organization, specifically one where customer service is a guiding principle.  A successful IT Service Provider must deliver compelling, out-of-the-box solutions and a world-class customer experience. Expertise is critical but customers must also be confident that their chosen IT partner can build a strong one-on-one rapport with their teams.  We’ve found that most companies need an IT partner who listens to their needs and challenges, while being thoughtful and empathetic toward the given situation. Continue reading

DataCenter Knowledge: TierPoint CEO Jerry Kent Talks Strategy

Originally published on DataCenterKnowledge.com by Bill Stoller on November 22, 2016

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DCK Exclusive: TierPoint CEO Jerry Kent Talks Strategy

St. Louis Missouri-based TierPoint is a privately held colocation, hybrid cloud and managed services provider focused on serving enterprise customers in US secondary markets.

TierPoint has continued to execute on an acquisition and organic growth strategy for more than a decade. The company now employs 850-plus associates who deliver services around the clock to over 5,000 customers nationwide.

In the past 12 months, the pace of acquisitions reached a crescendo with the $575 million acquisition of Windstream Hosted Solutions, and the Q1 2016 purchase of Midwest data center provider Cosentry, for an undisclosed sum. In December 2015, TierPoint entered the Chicago market to service an existing client with the acquisition of AlteredScale.

[Read more: How TierPoint Quietly Built a Data Center Empire in Secondary Markets]

In September, the company announced an investment of $20 million to develop a 16,000 square foot initial phase of a planned 90,000 square foot campus in Allen, Texas, to be built by Compass Data Centers. TierPoint has invested a total of $45 million this year in data center expansion projects, including an announcement last week of a $13 million expansion of its Baltimore and Marlborough (Boston Metro West) data centers.

National Footprint

TierPoint now operates a fleet of 39 data centers, totaling over 650,000 square feet, located in 20 US markets, spread across 18 states. Based on last quarter’s annualized run-rate, TierPoint now generates $370 million of revenue per year according to company management. Click here to read the full article, including an in-depth discussion with CEO Jerry Kent on TierPoint company culture, product enhancements and market opportunities.  

Strategic Planning: Rethinking Your Hybrid IT Strategy in 2017

“Through 2019, public cloud growth is expected to be nearly 3X the growth of private clouds.  In turn, private cloud growth is expected to be 2X higher than colocation.” – Source: IDC

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By Andy Stewart, Chief Strategy Officer

2016: An exciting year for the cloud

The growth in public cloud and its adoption across every size and type of enterprise in 2016 is astounding.  Companies like Microsoft and Amazon have labored tirelessly to create platforms capable of reinventing how IT is consumed, both now and into the future. Microsoft’s public cloud platform, Azure, is already seeing more than 120,000 new subscriptions a month, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) revenues have a run rate exceeding $10 billion a year.

Looking forward, a number of the mid-sized enterprises we work with are rethinking their hybrid strategy to include the public cloud for more than just test/dev environments and disaster recovery. We’re even seeing boards of directors issue mandates for the organization to move a certain percentage of their workloads to the public cloud. In addition, Big Data initiatives are prompting another look at both public and hosted private clouds as cloud resources can help businesses use their budget dollars more efficiently by turning a capital expense into a monthly operating expense. Continue reading

TierPoint Summit Keynote Provides Good Lessons for Developing Security Strategy

By Mike Sander, TierPoint Senior Solutions Engineer

Last week I had the privilege of attending TierPoint’s annual Security Summit in Omaha.

Former White House CIO Theresa Payton presented a well-received keynote address about security lessons she learned serving the president.  Attendees said they enjoyed the talk because it provided a business context around an organization’s security needs, as well as ideas to address the added pressure they feel with high-profile cyberattacks continually on the rise.

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(LtoR) Tom McMillin, TierPoint President and COO, Former White House CIO Theresa Payton and Mary Meduski, TierPoint President and CFO, kick off the 2016 TierPoint Security Summit

Continue reading

Preparing for Takeoff with Managed Azure Cloud Services

By David McKenney, Director, Product Management

A client recently told me that he thinks of TierPoint’s Microsoft Azure managed services as his company’s airline for navigating through the cloud. We get them where they need to go safely and securely, when they need to get there, without having to buy, maintain and fly their own fleet of jetliners.

His metaphor illustrates how the top three concerns clients have when making the move to Microsoft Azure tend to be the same as when we fly: security, expertise and flexibility.

Aircraft taxiing

Before we take off, we want to know the pilot and crew have followed all the security and safety protocols, and possess the expertise to navigate through unexpected weather and air traffic to get us to our destination safely. We also need the flexibility to send our sales VP from Miami to Albuquerque while our trade show team flies to New York on the same day. And we definitely don’t want to pay for any planes sitting in the hangar when they’re not needed. Continue reading