Boss vows to protect Sterling

December 21, 2019 0 Comments

first_imgLiverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has insisted he will protect Raheem Sterling if necessary.The 17-year-old from Harlesden has had a major impact since stepping up to first-team level and has been included in the England squad.And Rodgers said: “I don’t have any worries about Raheem Sterling being called in the England squad – he’s in capable hands.“He has coped with everything, and the big thing is his courage. I have seen him grow from a young kid to a young man in the last few months. He’s really grown and developed.“But the point I’ve made since the very beginning is it is about making sure the timing is right for these players, not to let them have too much too young and get over exposure.“He is 17 and we have to protect him. Maybe we will let him out of the pram when he’s 18!” 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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

OFBF annual meeting highlights

December 18, 2019 0 Comments

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The 97th annual meeting of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation (OFBF) featured many highlights from the previous year and many plans and policies for the year ahead.There was much ground covered in the broad policy debate.“One of the issues addressed is Ohio’s drug epidemic, specifically in rural areas statewide. What are the programs OFBF should be supporting to help us deal with the drug problem in Ohio — opiates in particular? Other discussions revolved around our continuing opposition to the legalization of recreational marijuana in the state. Water quality is a big deal for agriculture in the state and the delegate body is discussing supporting a statewide water trust that could be developed and funded through bonding measures in the state to help our water quality issues,” said Adam Sharp, with OFBF. “You learn something new every year here. Agriculture has such a wide impact in the state and because of that we have a wide range of issues that we deal with and every policy session is fascinating. It is impressive when you hear the expertise on the delegate floor talking about these issues. We come up with really good policy because of that.”Nearly 350 delegates debated the organization’s stances on policy. Other issues included energy development, meat inspection regulations, improvements to property tax laws, invasive species and the structure of local governments.Attendees were also updated on the roll out of Farm Bureau’s new membership structure that was approved by delegates at last year’s annual meeting. A special session introduced members to the reorganized Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation.At the Harvest Banquet, the Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award was presented to Irv and Jean Bell from Muskingum County. The Cooperative/Agricultural Educator Award was presented to Joe Sloan of Preble County (posthumously) and Stephanie Gompf Jolliff of Ridgemont High School in Hardin County.Marlene Eick of Radnor was recognized as the winner of OFBF’s 2015 Excellence in Agriculture Award. Eick received an expense-paid trip to Orlando, Fla. to compete in the national Excellence in Agriculture contest during the American Farm Bureau Federation annual convention in January. She also will receive a John Deere Gator courtesy of Farm Credit Mid-America and a $1,000 technology package sponsored by OFBF.Eick and her husband, B.J., own Herdmark Media, a visual media company where Eick serves as client lead. They also own a small show pig operation. She has served on the Delaware County Farm Bureau board of trustees, participated statewide in Young Agricultural Professionals programs, is co-leader of the Delaware County Young Agricultural Professionals and is a graduate of AgriPOWER Institute Class VI. She also serves on the Ohio Pork Council’s Showpig Committee, Ohio FFA Foundation’s Sponsors Team, is a member of Shepherd of the Peace Lutheran Church and is a recipient of the Honorary State FFA Degree.Nick and Jessica Dailey of Sardinia are the winners of OFBF’s 2015 Outstanding Young Farmer Award. The Daileys won 250 hours free use of an M-series tractor provided by Kubota, a Polaris Ranger provided by Polaris, $1,000 in Grainger merchandise sponsored by Farm Credit Mid-America and an expense-paid trip to the 2016 American Farm Bureau Federation annual convention in Orlando, Fla. in January.Nick and Jessica farm 1,800 acres of grain crops in Adams, Brown, Clermont and Highland counties. They also own a trucking company. They are 11-year members of Brown County Farm Bureau where Nick has served on the board of trustees. Both are Sunday School teachers at Hillsboro Bible Baptist Church. Nick also serves as a Franklin Township Trustee.The 2015 Discussion Meet winner is Elizabeth Long from Madison County. OFBF president Steve Hirsch Pickaway County delegates listen to the policy discussion. The Cooperative/Agricultural Educator Award was presented to Joe Sloan of Preble County (posthumously) and Stephanie Gompf Jolliff (pictured) of Ridgemont High School in Hardin County. The Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award was presented to Irv and Jean Bell from Muskingum County. Jack Fisher, who announced his retirement in 2016, presided over his last Harvest Banquet as executive vice president. Nick and Jessica Dailey of Sardinia are the winners of OFBF’s 2015 Outstanding Young Farmer Award. Marlene Eick of Radnor was recognized as the winner of Ohio Farm Bureau Federation’s 2015 Excellence in Agriculture Award. The 2015 Discussion Meet winner is Elizabeth Long (right) from Madison County.last_img read more

Cost of Solar Electricity Hits a New Low

December 16, 2019 0 Comments

first_imgThe Palo Alto, California, city council is considering a power purchase agreement (PPA) with a developer that would let the city’s municipal electric utility buy power for about 3.7 cents per kilowatt hour — the lowest known price in the U.S. PV magazine reports that the contract would be between the city and Hecate Energy, which will supply electricity from the 26-megawatt Wilsona Solar project in Los Angeles County. The Palmdale, California, project is scheduled to begin operation in 2021 and provide 75,000 MW of electricity.The proposed deal has a 25-year base term, with optional extensions that would keep it in force for a total of 40 years. The full city council is scheduled to vote on the contract on March 21.“I have not seen a PPA for 40 years before, or a PPA for under 4 cents,” Mercom Capital CEO Raj Prabhu told the magazine. “It might make sense for both parties: Very low clean power PPA for the city and a very long-term contract for the vendor which justifies the record low price.” The website UtilityDive says that falling prices for installed solar were one reason that the industry added 7.3 gigawatts of capacity last year, which includes both utility-scale and smaller distributed energy projects. That’s more than the added capacity of new natural gas power plants.James Stack, the contract administrator for Palo Alto’s Utilities Department, says that the price is almost 50% lower than the city’s other solar contracts worked out just a few years ago. At the time, he said, those contracts were thought to be “pretty well priced.”It’s also coming at a good time. The severe statewide drought has reduced hydroelectric sources of electricity, which usually account for about half the city’s total. Replacing that with non-hydro power is forcing the city to raise its electricity rates by about 12% in July and another 8% next year.The Hecate solar project will provide about 7.5% of the city’s electricity consumption.last_img read more

Cybersecurity in the VA: A Pressing Problem That Demands Improvement

December 15, 2019 0 Comments

first_imgAI: How it’s Impacting Surveillance Data Storage Related Posts The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) houses massive amounts of data on thousands of veterans all over the country. Furthermore, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is considered the largest integrated healthcare system in the United States. So when it comes to the topic of cybersecurity in the VA, there’s a lot at stake. Is enough being done to protect important data?Security Weaknesses AboundEach year, the VA conducts a Federal Information Security Modernization Act (FISMA) audit and publishes some of its key findings in a publicly available report. The objective of this report is to determine the extent to which the VA’s information security practices comply with FISMA requirements.According to the results of one recent report, the VA continues to face rather significant challenges in complying with FISMA requirements. This is the direct result of the nature and maturity of its information security program. The report offers 29 separate recommendations for improving cybersecurity within the department. These findings are broken down into eight key areas of concern that the VA must address as soon as possible:Agency-wide security management program. The department has a team working on dozens of specific plans of action to address core vulnerabilities. However, there are still significant risks and weaknesses with this team that must be confronted.Identity management and access controls. When it comes to access management programs – which determine who has access to VA systems and what they’re allowed to do within these systems – there are grave concerns. The department lacks strong password management, audit logging and monitoring, authentication (including two-factor), and access management systems.Configuration management controls. While the VA has baseline configurations in place to establish and encourage minimum security across the department, auditors discovered that they aren’t being adopted or consistently enforced.System development/change management controls. The VA has documented policies in place to ensure that all new systems and applications meet security standards as they go online. Unfortunately, approvals and plans for numerous projects were found to be incomplete or altogether missing. Most glaring were the missing authorizations for two major data centers and five VA medical centers.Contingency planning. In case of a major systems failure, the VA has contingency plans in place to secure and recover veteran data. With that being said, these plans haven’t been fully tested and there’s evidence to suggest at least a dozen medical centers have failed to encrypt backups for critical systems.Incident response and monitoring. While the VA has made significant improvements in this area over the last couple of years, the department is failing to fully monitor sensitive network connections with a number of important business partners.Continuous monitoring. The VA lacks a comprehensive continuous monitoring program that’s capable of identifying abnormalities in the system. This makes it difficult to consistently find and remove unauthorized applications.Contractor systems oversight. When it comes to external contractors that the VA works with, the department doesn’t have adequate controls in place for monitoring their cloud computing systems. Furthermore, the report found numerous high-risk vulnerabilities on these contractor networks as a result of things like outdated and/or unpatched operating systems.The fact that the VA continues to fail in meeting cybersecurity expectations is a surprise to no one. The incompetency within this department has been well documented over the decades. Yet, as difficult as it may be to see, progress is finally being made.For the most part, this progress has come in the form of the development of robust policies and strategic procedures. Unfortunately, the VA still faces significant challenges in actually implementing tangible components.4 Possible Suggestions and SolutionsIf the VA’s cybersecurity challenges were simple, they would already be solved. Instead, they’re complex and challenging – requiring a rigorous approach. While this is by no means a comprehensive list, here are a few suggestions and solutions that may address some of the aforementioned concerns (as well as some other points of friction):1. Limit AccessAccess is a serious concern in almost every large organization around the world – federal, public, or private. It’s no different in the VA where far too many people have access to information and data that they have no use for.With such confidential data stored in the VA systems, there’s significant risk in a lackadaisical approach to access management. A stronger system that limits access based on job title and job responsibility is key. It would also be helpful to have a system in place that provides limited and/or temporary access for individuals who need it for isolated purposes. Audit log collections are also helpful. They would provide a comprehensive record of digital comings and goings, while enhancing accountability and amplifying the VA’s ability to detect and identify intruders.2. Improve AuthenticationAs of the end of fiscal year 2018, the VA had yet to fully implement two-factor authentication across the entire department (and it was nowhere to be found in local network access). This has to change.As you may know, two-factor authentication is designed to stop stolen and compromised credentials by requiring a second level of authentication. Instead of only requiring something a person knows (username and password), two-factor authentication also asks for something a person has in their possession (like a smartphone). After logging in with the standard username-password combo, a code is then sent to a specific device via SMS, phone, or email. This code – which typically has an expiration time of just a few minutes – has to be retrieved and then input. Without both elements, login is denied.With two-factor authentication, the idea is that it’s much more difficult for a remote hacker to gain access to an account. While it’s not a foolproof system, it’s superior to anything the VA currently has in place.3. Make Key Processes More EfficientCyber security issues and process inefficiencies go hand in hand with the VA. It’s one of those chicken and the egg dilemmas: Do cybersecurity flaws make processes inefficient, or do inefficient processes lead to cybersecurity issues? Considering that the VA’s inefficiencies have been around far longer than the internet, it’s safe to assume that fixing certain inefficiencies is the best place to start.Take the process of obtaining a DD214 copy – the document veterans need to receive benefits like disability – as an example. The process is confusing, time-consuming, and frustrating. There’s so much governmental red tape involved that people often end up waiting weeks to obtain copies. The problem lies in the fact that there’s a lack of organization and proper filing in place to quickly access information. And if there are issues on this side of things, it stands to reason that there are also problems on the data security front.When procedures are made more efficient, there are fewer shadows for security issues and vulnerabilities to lurk. Restructuring of these processes could produce positive change.4. Prevent Medical Device Cyber AttacksAs you may guess, hospitals and healthcare organizations are highly profitable targets for hackers using ransomware. These hackers will target medical devices, shut down key systems, and wait until the hospital pays the ransom before it’s restored. In addition to putting lives at danger in the short-term, these attacks have the potential to compromise millions of data records and, over the long-term, put personal privacy at risk.Just a couple of years ago, the SamSam ransomware attack forced a shut down of the operations in 10 MedStar Health hospitals and 250 outpatient centers. The hackers wanted $19,000 in Bitcoin. MedStar refused to pay and it took days before the network was restored. In another SamSam attack, Indiana-based Hancock Health ended up paying a $55,000 ransom to regain control. Between MedStar, Hancock, and other targets, the SamSam attack cost companies more than $30 million in direct costs and millions more in indirect expenses and reputation loss.The VA isn’t immune from potentially experiencing similar attacks. As recently as the middle of 2016, the VA had documented 181 cases of infected medical devices. So far, there have been relatively few issues as a result of these infections, but the fact that dozens of devices can be compromised speaks to the severity of the issue at hand.The VA must work carefully to become more secure at the individual device level. This requires an extensive overarching strategy and a conscientious approach to monitoring. But with ransomware attacks expected to rise in the future, this is an issue that must be dealt with as soon as possible.More Work To Be DoneIt would be unfair to say that the VA is sitting back and ignoring its cybersecurity issues. The truth of the matter is that they’re hard at work correcting the issues uncovered in recent FISMA audit reports. Unfortunately, this to-do list is so extensive that it’ll take years at this pace before every shortcoming can be addressed. The hope is that, in the meantime, nothing catastrophic will occur.Our nation’s veterans should be honored and respected above all else. In addressing key cybersecurity concerns, we’re actively working toward a VA that prioritizes its members and provides them with the privacy that they deserve. What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Frank Landmancenter_img Frank is a freelance journalist who has worked in various editorial capacities for over 10 years. He covers trends in technology as they relate to business. Follow the Puck How Data Analytics Can Save Liveslast_img read more

The Hustler’s Playbook: On Slackers

December 9, 2019 0 Comments

first_imgI’ve been trying to come up with a word that describes the non-hustler. But I’ve chosen the term “non-hustlers” because I believe that so many of them have been infected with a too-small vision and a poor personal psychology. They have been infected with all of the negativity that is poured into their heads every day, especially through the mainstream media. But there is one group of non-hustlers who have made a choice to be what they are: Slackers.The slacker has talent. He has the ability to perform excellent and exceptional work, but instead produces nothing notable or noteworthy. Where he could make A marks, he proudly scrapes by with a C-. The hustler who would do well to make C- grades produces better results than the slacker because she hustles. She does noteworthy work even when she lacks the natural talent.The slacker proudly has a mindset that it sharp contrast to the hustler. Where the hustler is proud to put forth the effort, the slacker is proud of his cynicism. The slacker believes that everything is bullshit, that there is nothing worth his best effort, and that the cool thing to do is to sit passively and criticise “the suckers” who are out hustling. The slacker might be capable of producing a better result than the hustler, but their slacker identity won’t allow for it.Where the slacker is proud of their lazy, sloth-like behavior, the hustler is proud of their productivity. Where the slacker is cynical, criticizing the rules of the game, the hustler is breaking those rules and bending the game to their world. Where the slacker sees nothing that excites him, the hustler sees the boundless opportunities that fuel the fire in her belly.The non-hustler can easily be saved. They aren’t infected with the disease that the slacker carries. The non-hustler can easily catch fire when they adopt the hustler’s mindset (and it always, always, always starts with mindset). But the slacker has a more difficult time. They are so deeply infected, they have so closely held their identity for so long, that it is incredibly difficult to make the leap from slacker to hustler.Pity the non-hustler, but not the slacker. The slacker has made a choice.last_img read more