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Lawmakers, Procurement Experts Call Puerto Rico Power Contract a 'Travesty'

 

The Trump administration is distancing itself from a controversial contract aimed at rebuilding the power grid in hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico, which procurement experts and lawmakers say has dubious origins and contains highly unusual provisions.

The contract in question was valued at $300 million and awarded to a small Montana firm, Whitefish Energy, by the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority. The unusually high labor costs and language that prohibits government agencies from auditing certain aspects of the deal, as revealed in the leaked contract, sparked concern from members of Congress and government watchdogs. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., the ranking member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said the contract “raises every red flag in the book.”

Both the White House and the Federal Emergency Management Administration have distanced themselves from the contract.

“Based on initial review and information from PREPA, FEMA has significant concerns with how PREPA procured this contract and has not confirmed whether the contract prices are reasonable,” FEMA said in a statement on Friday. “FEMA is presently engaged with PREPA and its legal counsel to obtain information about the contract and contracting process, including how the contract was procured and how PREPA determined the contract prices were reasonable.”

One provision of the document stated “FEMA has reviewed and approved of this contract” and is “an acceptable form to qualify for funding from FEMA and other U.S. governmental agencies,” but FEMA said that characterization is “inaccurate.”

Another section of the contract states “the federal government is not a party to this contract and is not subject to any obligations or liabilities to PREPA” or anyone else party to the document. FEMA said it has yet to provide any reimbursement to Whitefish, adding any applicant for its public assistance grants must abide by federal requirements or “risk not being reimbursed.”

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said at a briefing on Friday the contract was “not something the federal government played a role in” and declined to comment on its propriety until a proper audit is conducted.

Both the process for obtaining the contract and the subject of it are problematic, said Steven Schooner, a professor of government procurement law at The George Washington University and a former associate administrator for procurement law and legislation at the Office of Federal Procurement Policy in the Office of Management and Budget. Whitefish did not go through a competitive, open bidding process before receiving the contract. The attempt to limit transparency through restricting audits “jumps off the page” and is “highly irregular,” Schooner said.

The contract states that, “In no event shall PREPA, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the FEMA administrator, the comptroller general of the United States, or any of their authorized representatives have the right to audit or review the cost and profit elements of the labor rates specified herein."

Scott Amey, general counsel at the Project on Government Oversight, said an audit clause used to be standard practice until sometime during the Clinton administration. He added that many contracts today still go out the door without requiring firms to “provide adequate support for costs or prices.” Amey found problematic another clause in the contract, in which PREPA waived “any claims against” Whitefish for any delays in completing work.

The waiver “raises concerns about whether Whitefish or its subcontractor workforce is prolonging the work to reach, and possibly extend, the contract’s $300 million ceiling,” Amey said.

Amey echoed Schooner in noting the contract highlighted the difficulties in negotiating relief contracts after a disaster strikes. Many observers faulted Puerto Rico for reaching an agreement with Whitefish rather than relying on a previously established mutual-aid network of public utilities that typically handle power restoration.

Several aspects of the billing have also raised concerns. A journeyman lineman on the contract, Schooner noted, would make about $228 per hour. Subcontracted journeyman linemen, who will provide the vast majority of the work for the contract, will earn $319 per hour. That provides a significant take off the top for Whitefish, Schooner said, in which “you’d have to be an idiot” to send your own employees to do the work rather than hiring subcontractors. Those employees will also earn a $400 per diem, according to the contract, meaning a subcontractor lineman working eight hours would bill at nearly $3,000 per day.

“That’s a jaw-dropping rate,” Schooner said. “How could somebody have agreed to these kinds of rates?”

Whitefish is also billing the government at an hourly rate for equipment, which Schooner called “unthinkable.”

“It’s so unbelievably nonsensical I don’t even know where to begin,” he said.

The contract initially came under scrutiny after reports surfaced that Whitefish is headquartered in the small town where Interior Department Secretary Ryan Zinke lives, and that Zinke’s son interned at the company. Interior has denied Zinke had any involvement with the contract, something Sanders said Zinke reiterated to Trump at a previously scheduled White House meeting on Friday.

"Any attempts by the dishonest media or political operatives to tie me to awarding or influencing any contract involving Whitefish are completely baseless," Zinke said in a statement Friday. "I welcome any and all investigations into these allegations, and encourage the Interior Department's inspector general to investigate this matter fully." 

Two House committees, Energy and Commerce and well as Natural Resources, have launched probes into the contract. The Homeland Security Department’s inspector general is also investigating the contract. McCaskill and the chairman of her committee, Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., wrote a letter to the IG requesting he determine whether the contract is eligible for reimbursement under FEMA’s Public Assistance Program. Their committee is holding a hearing on the federal government’s recent hurricane response efforts, and McCaskill said Trump administration officials “better be ready to answer tough questions on exactly what is happening with this contract.”

The no-audit clause in Whitefish’s contract, Amey noted, did not apply to the DHS IG or congressional committees.

Schooner praised the reviews underway, calling the contract a “travesty” and suggesting some major changes happen quickly.

“It would be an abomination if it isn’t very quickly terminated, modified or replaced,” he said.

 

New Cybersecurity Regulations Adopted to Protect Financial Systems & Information

In 2016 almost 1.1 billion identities were stolen globally.  This number is up dramatically from a reported 563.8 million identities stolen in 2015.   In addition, the same Symantec Internet Security Threat Report placed the United States at the top of the list for both the number of breaches by country (1,023) and the number of identities stolen by country.

New York State’s Division of Financial Security and other government entities around the globe have been monitoring this increased cybercriminal threat and determining means to help protect the private information of individuals as well as the information technology systems of regulated organizations.

New York State’s Division of Financial Security released new cybersecurity requirements (23 NYCRR 500), directly affecting the way that financial data is managed going forward. Applicable to financial services companies operating in New York State, these regulations declare that, on an annual basis, financial firms are required to prepare and submit a Certification of Compliance with the NY DFS Cybersecurity Regulations to the superintendent, commencing on February 15, 2018.

The scope of this legislation describes measures related to: cybersecurity programs and policy, personnel, resources and training, penetration testing and assessments, audit trails, access privileges, application security, third parties, NPI (Non Public Information) encryption, data retention, incident response and notification.

Among other requirements, this regulation dictates that companies declare any cyberattack to the superintendent within 72 hours. In the past, many companies chose to not disclose information related to these hacking exposures because much of their cost stems from damage to brand reputation and the necessary steps required to rebuild the trust of their clients post-attack.

Similar to the NY DFS proposal, the Federal Reserve Board (FSD), the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), and the FDIC issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) on enhanced cyber risk management and resilience standards for large banking organizations.  Additionally, the states of Vermont and Colorado have released laws pertaining to cybersecurity and the improved protection and monitoring of data. 

Two technologies specifically called out in the new NYS DFS Cybersecurity requirements, Multi-factor Authentication (MFA) and Risk Based Authentication (RBA), are key methods of complying with regulation and defending against attacks. 

Multi-factor authentication is defined as using at least two factors to authenticate a person, generally a combination of:

  • “Something I Have” — this could be a hardware token, a mobile soft token, etc.
  • “Something I Know” — like a PIN code, a password, and
  • “Something I Am” — such as a fingerprint or face recognition.

With MFA, the two factors are fully independent from each other (i.e. the failure of one factor would not compromise the other one).

Risk based authentication is the capacity to detect anomalies or changes in the normal use patterns of a person as part of the authentication process, require additional verification if an anomaly is detected to avoid any breach.

It is more efficient to avoid hacking and cyber-attacks in the first place by focusing attention on the security of the applications being accessed, both externally and internally.  To learn more about these regulations and how similar standards will impact you, visit www.hidglobal.com/iam.

NAVIGATION BRIDGE SYSTEM FOR THE ROYAL NEW ZEALAND NAVY

Kelvin Hughes is delighted to announce that it has been awarded a contract by Hyundai Heavy Industries to supply the Integrated Navigation Bridge System (INBS) for The Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) Maritime Sustainment Capability (MSC) Vessel.

The INBS system meets the requirements of IMO Lloyds Register Class Notation IBS and Naval Ship Code. It includes a dual redundant data distribution system and fully integrated Kelvin Hughes multifunction displays. The radar system takes advantage of the Kelvin Hughes’ advanced solid state SharpEye™ Doppler radars that bring full situational awareness to the bridge even in the most severe weather conditions.

The MSC tanker is the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) future ice-capable fleet replenishment tanker and will be the largest vessel to be operated by the RNZN. With a scheduled delivery of the ship in 2020 by Hyundai Heavy Industries and the RNZN planning to induct the vessel in 2021, Kelvin Hughes will supply the bridge system for installation in 2018. The MSC vessel was approved by The Government of New Zealand in June 2014 allowing the tender to be released in March 2015. The contract was awarded to Hyundai Heavy Industries in July that year for $493 million and the vessel will be built at the Ulsan Shipyard in South Korea.

The scope of work includes the design and integration of the Kelvin Hughes supplied navigation equipment and Shipyard supplied systems in a suite of bridge consoles manufactured in Korea.

Spike Hughes, Sales and Marketing Director at Kelvin Hughes stated:
“Kelvin Hughes has been designing integrated navigation bridge systems for over three decades and has a wealth of experience which enables us to meet the demanding requirements of specialist naval bridges for the RNZN and also The Royal Navy’s Royal Fleet Auxiliary Tide Class”.

SharpEye Naval Radar

The navigation radar sensors selected are to be SharpEye™ S and X-Band and one S-Band SharpEye™ sensor optimised for helicopter approach and control.

On the bridge of any ship, the navigation radars are essential for the safe navigation of the vessel and safety of life onboard. SharpEye™ provides an advanced radar sensor that through the Doppler processing, enhanced pulse compression and Moving Target Detection (MTD) processing, provides unprecedented situational awareness, detecting small targets on the sea surface and low aerial targets such as helicopters out to the horizon in severe weather conditions. The combination of these radar techniques enables the sea and rain clutter to be filtered out without losing the radar targets of interest. This is especially important when protecting the ship from threats such as swimmers, RHIBs and other low Radar Cross Section (RCS) threats.

SharpEye™ detection performance, removes the need for a helicopter transponder. The MSC will control flight deck operations, recovery and local airspace management through two helicopter control displays with tactical software. In total, there will be eleven displays on the bridge as part of the IMO compliant system.

Radar Display

KEY POINTS

The Kelvin Hughes Integrated Navigation Bridge System (INBS) utilises its latest bridge navigation display system and is based on the proven Kelvin Hughes multifunction tactical radar display.

The networked display system allows for operation as full multifunction workstations for improved ergonomic operation and redundancy. This means not only the radar, ECDIS and conning can be operated from any designated multifunction display, but also the WECDIS.

Part of the ships mission is to be capable of operating in polar conditions and the Kelvin Hughes SharpEye™ radars are compliant with the winterisation requirements for operation in an Antarctic environment and all other weather conditions.

The solid state SharpEye™ transceivers are located upmast in the carbon composite turning unit housing and bring additional benefits such as high reliability, no loss of signal and reduced cost of installation due to the removal of wave guide routing downmast. Reliability is further improved by the use of a direct drive motor system rather than the traditional antenna rotator gearbox.

Edgile introduces new solution to address access management for enterprises shifting to clouds

AUSTIN, TX June 14, 2017 (SailPoint Navigate '17) Edgile, the leading cyber risk and compliance consulting firm, today announced the launch of Cloud Jumpstart, a program to address the identity provisioning and governance challenges faced with enterprise-wide shifts to the cloud. Designed to leverage both Microsoft Azure's secure access and SailPoint's identity governance, Edgile's Cloud Jumpstart helps organizations create business-aligned programs to ensure a secure and compliant shift.

"Enterprises moving to the cloud must ensure they maintain an appropriate level of security and account for increasing compliance issues in today's complex digital environment. Risk officers are realizing they need additional dedicated expertise if they want to successfully transform their company with a lasting, issue-free shift to the cloud," said Don Elledge, CEO of Edgile. "Our new Cloud Jumpstart program delivers organizations a customized blueprint for an efficient, secure, and compliant move to the cloud that improves their overall risk profile." 

Award winning expertise with Microsoft and SailPoint

The Cloud Jumpstart program enables enterprise customers to take advantage of Edgile's combination of deep IAM and cloud experience. With multiple EM+S and Azure Active Directory experts honored as Microsoft MVPs, Edgile has a long history of success as a Microsoft Gold Partner. Edgile was recently named a 2017 Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Award Partner of the Year finalist. Based on an outstanding track record as a SailPoint Premiere Partner, Edgile was also named SailPoint Partner of the Year for the Americas.

Through Edgile's new Cloud Jumpstart program, organizations can confidently leverage the cloud with a business-aligned strategy for hybrid access governance. The program defines a clear path to compliance in the cloud—combining SailPoint's identity governance capabilities and extending Azure Active Directory Premium—to cover the most demanding security needs of the modern enterprise.

"We're excited about the innovative new way Edgile's Cloud Jumpstart program helps customers strategically assess and implement Microsoft Azure Active Directory with SailPoint's Identity Governance to protect their entire enterprise," said Alex Simons, Director of Program Management, Identity Division, Microsoft Corp.

"Edgile is a valued strategic consulting partner and we have a long history of working together to help our customers fully leverage the power of our identity governance platform," said Kevin Cunningham, president and co-founder of SailPoint. "Edgile's Cloud Jumpstart program accelerates our joint customers' ability to leverage SailPoint's collaboration with Microsoft and integration with Azure Active Directory. This allows security organizations to quickly evaluate and strategically deploy an integrated SailPoint-Microsoft hybrid solution. This collaboration is a powerful combination. Once deployed, it empowers users with seamless access while ensuring security requirements are met through identity governance."

Supporting Resources: 

Edgile Cloud Risk & Security: We Secure the Cloud SM

The shift to the cloud is accelerating as the agility, reliability, and reduced costs of cloud services rapidly overcome concerns about protected information and regulatory compliance. Edgile provides clients with a secure and compliant path to the cloud by delivering a strategic roadmap while managing risk and modernizing the organizational security model. Our cloud specialists—with deep expertise in IAM, GRC, and cybersecurity—deliver a transformational skill set to successfully lead organizations through enterprise-wide shifts.

About Edgile

Edgile is the trusted security partner to the world's leading organizations, providing consulting, managed services, and regulatory content services. Our mission is to secure the modern enterprise by developing programs that increase business agility and create a competitive advantage for our clients. Our strategy-first model helps organizations achieve their business goals through on-premises and cloud security programs, IAM, GRC, and cybersecurity.

For more information about Edgile: www.edgile.com. Follow Edgile on Twitter and LinkedIn.

PepperBall partners with Jordanian facility to train security personnel on non-lethal measures

AMMAN, Jordan Dec. 2, 2016 The King Abdullah II Special Operations Training Center (KASOTC) is the premier training center in the Middle East for police, military, and special operations. In KASOTC’s continuous vision and mission to be at the forefront of integrating training and technology within the region and the world, it is pleased to announce that it has strategically partnered with PepperBall® to create a customized non-lethal training course for the police, military and security forces worldwide. PepperBall®, a division of United Tactical Systems, LLC, is the world’s leader in non-lethal .68 OC and CS systems.

The KASOTC Non-Lethal PepperBall® course consists of a three day weapons, tactics and armorers’ training course. The course features training on the most advanced pneumatic launchers, including PepperBall’s VKS (Variable Kinetic System). The VKS launcher is unique in that its velocity can be adjusted to shoot projectiles from 280fps to 400fps, a single system that can be used for multiple missions. It also offers the ability to fire PepperBall’s round projectiles, as well as its VXR shaped projectiles™, which doubles the system’s accurate effective distance.

“We are truly honored to have the PepperBall® System at the world class facility of KASOTC and to be working together to deliver customized non-lethal training courses to address the increased regional demand for tactical non-lethal solutions for police, military, and special operations,” said Glenn L. Katz, Executive Vice President of Global Sales at PepperBall®. “With the increasing amount of civil unrest around the world, KASOTC’s combination of world class facilities and elite instructor and support staff make it an ideal facility for training on non-lethal tactics and equipment.”

About KASOTC

The King Abdullah II Special Operations Training Center, also known as KASOTC, is in Amman, Jordan, and is a one-of-a-kind facility. The 2.5 square kilometer site boasts over 200 million dollars’ worth of cutting edge training facilities and support structures. Its unique nature derives from an extraordinary combination of cutting-edge training, elite instructor and support staff along with its integrated advanced technology. KASOTC offers tailored training courses & support for clients with their own programs.

Since its Grand Opening in May of 2009, KASOTC has supported thousands of training programs for clients around the world. Thus, achieving His Majesty’s King Abdullah II vision for KASOTC as an international center of excellence.

For more information about KASOTC and its training programs, please visit www.KASOTC.com.

About PepperBall®

PepperBall® is the world’s premier manufacturer of .68 launchers and OC/PAVA projectiles, supplying high-technology non-lethal products to over 5000 agencies in 45 countries around the world. PepperBall®-branded products are developed, manufactured and distributed by United Tactical Systems, LLC (UTS), a privately held company that provides less-lethal weapons for military, government, law enforcement, corrections, private security and consumer markets. PepperBall’s new VKS launcher, which is considered the most accurate and effective pneumatic non-lethal system in the world, has been adopted by leading law enforcement agencies and military units around the world.

For more information about PepperBall® and its products, please visit www.PepperBall.com.

Iteris using computer vision technology to make crosswalks safer

SANTA ANA, CA Iteris, Inc. (NASDAQ: ITI), the global leader in applied informatics for transportation and agriculture, today announced that it will unveil its PedTrax™ computer vision technology for pedestrian measurement at the ITE 2016 Annual Meeting August 14-17 in Anaheim, CA.

With PedTrax, Iteris is adding new pedestrian measurement capabilities to its industry-leading advanced video detection platforms that already include the world’s first bicycle detection and differentiation feature, SmartCycle®. PedTrax automates measurement of both the count, direction and speed of pedestrians in crosswalks to provide insights on levels of street life.

“Complete Streets embrace active transportation modes including walking and cycling, and their management is more effective with a performance-based approach for street measurements. As cities look at our streets from the view of everyone who actually uses them, getting an accurate and comprehensive view of pedestrian activity can be difficult, costly and time-consuming,” said Todd Kreter, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Roadway Sensors. “Iteris engineers designed this new PedTrax computer vision technology for automated pedestrian measurement at intersections to improve safety and mobility without the need for new equipment installation.”

Protecting Our Most Vulnerable Intersection Users with Accurate, Up-to-the-Minute Data

With PedTrax, transportation professionals and officials can make cities safer for pedestrians with better-informed decisions based on foot traffic volume, direction and speed to optimize intersection signal timing, and to inform proactive improvements to signage and striping, intersection design, overpass locations, school crossing guard deployment, and even economic development programs. Automated counting of the number and speed of pedestrians provides better on-screen reporting in traffic control centers. PedTrax presents reliable, current data for grant applications and performance monitoring with documented down-to-the-minute as well as seasonal trends in pedestrian traffic patterns.

The data and analytics supplied by PedTrax, along with SmartCycle, can inform agencies where roadway operations should be made more pedestrian- or bicycle-friendly, contributing to safer and more livable communities.

Building on Iteris’ Strong History of Innovation for Safer, More Efficient and Smarter Transportation Systems

The new PedTrax pedestrian measurement algorithm will be pre-installed on all new Vantage® detection systems and will be available as a free firmware upgrade to existing Edge®2 and Vantage Next® systems customers that employ the latest hardware revisions. This computer vision advancement is the latest in a series of new intersection camera and processor updates Iteris has brought to its transportation customers recently. In addition, Iteris was recently awarded a $2.1 million traffic signal synchronization project from the Orange County Transportation Authority and a $19 million, five year contract to expand its training program with the Federal Highway Administration and the National Highway Institute for safer, more efficient and smarter transportation.

Iteris and PedTrax at the ITE 2016 Annual Meeting

Iteris will be exhibiting at the ITE Annual Meeting in Anaheim, Calif. From August 14-16, 2016 and demonstrating the new PedTrax technology at booth #305. For more information or to schedule a demo please e-mail [email protected]

About Iteris, Inc.

Iteris is the global leader in applied informatics for transportation and agriculture, turning big data into big breakthrough solutions. We collect, aggregate and analyze data on traffic, roads, weather, water, soil and crops to generate precise informatics that lead to safer transportation and smarter farming. Municipalities, government agencies, crop science companies, farmers and agronomists around the world use our solutions to make roads safer and travel more efficient, as well as farmlands more sustainable, healthier and productive. For more information, please call 1-888-329-4483 or visit www.iteris.com.

About ITE

The Institute of Transportation Engineers is an international educational and scientific association of transportation professionals who are responsible for meeting mobility and safety needs. ITE facilitates the application of technology and scientific principles to research, planning, functional design, implementation, operation, policy development and management for any mode of ground transportation. Through its products and services, ITE promotes professional development of its members, supports and encourages education, stimulates research, develops public awareness programs and serves as a conduit for the exchange of professional information.

Security Mentor training solution to be featured at Gartner summit

PACIFIC GROVE, CA June 8, 2016

Security Mentor, a pioneer of innovative security awareness training that drives real behavior change, today announced that the company is a Silver Sponsor of the Gartner Security & Risk Management Summit 2016, which will be held on June 13-16 in National Harbor, Maryland. As a Silver Sponsor, Security Mentor will be hosting a booth (#520) where subject-matter experts will discuss the benefits of interactive, highly engaging, security awareness training.

“Security incidents have become commonplace and many of these incidents have either been initiated as attacks against employees, or caused by employee errors. This establishes the clear need for interactive and engaging security awareness training,” said Marie White, CEO and President, Security Mentor. “At Security Mentor, we continue to see growing interest in our industry-leading security awareness training program because it does what our competitors cannot do; that is driving actual employee behavior change by combing our pioneering delivery model with engaging, interactive training. Our cutting-edge training model of 10-minute, highly interactive lessons delivered monthly, has changed the way global organizations conduct their security education process and we look forward to showcasing our award-winning program at the Gartner Security & Risk Management Summit.”

In order to achieve success, security and risk leaders must embrace new approaches to digital business while maintaining a proven control architecture that alleviates enterprise risk. The Gartner Security & Risk Management Summit provides attendees with best practices and strategies to maintain cost-effective security and risk programs in order to support digital business and drive enterprise success. The comprehensive 2016 agenda addresses the latest security threats, flexible new security architectures, governance strategies, the expanding role of the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) and more.

Gartner attendees are invited to stop by the Security Mentor booth to learn how the company's truly effective security awareness training drives real, immediate behavior change by combining engaging, highly interactive training that employees love to take, with content-rich lessons that convey critical security information. For more information, visit the company’s website, follow the company on Twitter at @SecurityMentor and on LinkedIn. Join the conversation at the event on Twitter with the hashtag #GartnerSEC.

About Security Mentor

Security Mentor’s groundbreaking and award-winning security awareness training elevates security and compliance by transforming your workforce into security savvy employees. With only 10 minutes/month, our interactive, highly engaging lessons teach critical security skills in an easy-to-understand, fun format that drives real behavior change. The result: an engaged staff that values security. Security Mentor’s training is available as a cloud-based service from Security Mentor with username/password authentication or Federated Single Sign-on (SSO), or as SCORM 1.2 compliant modules for use on an organization’s own Learning Management System (LMS). Incorporated in 2008, Security Mentor has customers ranging from Fortune 500 enterprises to local and state governments.

GammaTech partners with PMT to offer in-car tablet computer

FREMONT, CA (PRNEWSWIRE) MAY 10, 2016

GammaTech Computer Corp. and Precision Mounting Technologies (PMT) announced today that they have expanded their partnership in which PMT designs, develops, and delivers unique vehicle docks, universal cradles, and mounting infrastructure products specifically for use with GammaTech's DURABOOK rugged R11 tablet computer. The companies' combined tablet product offering is ideal for use in the hard-charging, on-the-move public safety and field services applications, as they provide users with durable, rugged tablet computers secured in safe, reliable mounting systems.

"PMT's proven track record, product design excellence, and superior support capabilities have made them an outstanding partner for us," commented Tom Wang, GammaTech president. "Our rugged notebook and tablet computer integration with the compact PMT mounting systems allows us a level of space efficiency that sets us apart from our competitors. The partnership brings tremendous value to both companies' customers." 

GammaTech: Built Tough for Where Tough Matters 

The call to those in public safety is to serve and protect, and GammaTech DURABOOK rugged notebooks and tablets are built tough to ensure the reliability and performance this vital sector needs. Field services personnel are relied on by both the commercial and residential sectors to service and maintain the nation's infrastructure. With multiple wireless connectivity options, a magnesium case, and top-notch drop, shock, and spill resistance, the DURABOOK name is a trusted partner in the field service industry.

"Our computer vehicle docks deliver key attributes including safety, ergonomics, and mounting flexibility, making them an ideal match to satisfy the demands of public safety and field service organizations," stated Brett Rowland, PMT president. "Their robust efficient design and all-aluminum composition provide a high degree of stability, allowing them to withstand vibration associated with vehicles constantly on-the-go. PMT laptop and tablet vehicle docks lead the industry in compactness."

DURABOOK R11 Rugged Tablet 

GammaTech offers a full complement of rugged DURABOOK mobile devices that make perfect computing solutions for both the public safety and field services industries. One such model is the DURABOOK R11 rugged tablet with an 11.6" TFT LCD capacitive touch display and a powerful 5th generation Intel® Broadwell Core processor. It is the lightest 11.6" rugged tablet PC in its class at only 2.73 pounds (including battery), yet remains tough with Military Standard 810G and IP65 certifications for drop, shock, dust and water resistance, as well as the ability to withstand use in a wide range of temperatures.  The unit also passes MIL-STD-461F Army Ground and Air Force standard for military use, and is certified to ANSI ISA Standard 12.12.01 (formerly known as UL1604 – Class 1 Division 2) for operation in hazardous locations.

Additional features include a built-in G-sensor, gyroscope sensors, and a light-ambient light sensor; Intel high-definition audio; SSD 64GB/128GB/ 256GB storage; a Micro SD card slot for added memory capability and that supports SDHC and SDXC; a front-side, full HD camera as well as an integrated rear-facing 5MP camera; and a variety of wireless communications options and security features. Optional features include an expanded battery and keyboard folio. As with all GammaTech products, the R11 tablet can be customized to customer specifications.

"GammaTech's renowned rugged notebook and tablet devices and PMT's leading mobile mounting solutions make a perfect combination," PMT's Rowland said. "Our companies are well known and respected in our own fields, and since we serve many of the same industries, we understand each other's market. The pairing of our respective products makes the purchasing process easier and speeds up turnaround time."

Award-Winning Products 

GammaTech has a well-earned reputation and a long history in producing computers for the rugged market. It has been named a winner in Government Security News' Homeland Security Awards in the Best Rugged Computers category multiple times.

Boise State picks Rave Mobile Safety application to bolster campus security

FRAMINGHAM, MA (PRNEWSWIRE) MAY 4, 2016 

Rave Mobile Safety, the trusted creator of innovative public safety data and communication software, today announced that Boise State University has deployed the Rave Guardian Campus Safety App to increase protection for its nearly 25,000 students, faculty and staff. Rave's Guardian App is the first and most proven technology of its kind, protecting students at more than 1,200 higher education institutions across the United States.

The Guardian App transforms mobile phones into personal safety devices that can engage an entire campus community to greatly improve safety for students, faculty and staff. It also improves communication and officials' ability to respond to incidents and protect students, faculty and staff, by delivering critical information in real-time.

"Rave Guardian turns your cell phone into a mobile personalized blue light phone on steroids," said Elliot Cox, security analyst, Boise State University. "Because it does everything that an emergency blue light phone does now, and that allows the user to do touch-of-a-button calls to Boise State campus security, as well as to the Ada County Dispatch Center."

Boise State University was founded in 1932 by the Episcopal Church, and is situated on 175 acres of land across the river from downtown Boise, ID. It became an independent junior college in 1934, and began awarding baccalaureate and master's degrees in 1965. Today, the school is Idaho's largest university, offering 201 degrees in 190 fields of study and more than 100 graduate programs.

Rave Guardian lets users create a virtual safety network of friends, roommates, family, and campus safety. Users can then set a "Safety Timer" session. Once activated, "personal guardians" in a virtual safety network can monitor a user's status updates and location, and be notified at assigned check-in times. If the timer expires, or the user initiates a panic call, Rave Guardian automatically notifies trusted safety resources on campus.

Additional features of Rave Guardian include:

Anonymous Tips and Multi-Media Messaging: Allows Rave Guardian users to communicate anonymously via 2-way messaging with campus safety officials. Text and photo content is securely transmitted via Rave's geo-redundant public-safety grade infrastructure.

Campus Safety Connect Button: In the event of emergency, a special "button" on a user's mobile device immediately connects to campus safety, and a rich profile of the caller and their GPS location is automatically displayed.

Opt-in Safety Profiles for Faster Emergency Response: Student-created Safety Profiles containing details such as residence address and medical condition information are automatically presented to campus safety officials during emergency calls for faster, more precise response.

Rave Guardian is a fully hosted Software-as-a-Service solution. Higher education institutions deploying Rave Guardian get access to a dispatcher console configurable to their specific campus operations. The secure system easily integrates into existing procedures and student information systems. It is also accompanied by 24/7 customer support.

The Rave Guardian App – branded for each institution -- is available for free download at the Apple App Store for iOS devices, including the iPhone/iPad and Google Play for devices running the Android operating system.

"We are continuing to see strong momentum with schools recognizing the benefits that Rave Guardian offers to campuses of all sizes," said Tom Axbey, chief executive officer of Rave Mobile Safety. "Our Guardian App enables colleges to empower their community with a direct link to campus safety, increasing safety for everyone. We are very pleased to be able to bring greater protection to Idaho's largest institution of higher learning."

Rave Mobile Safety is the market leader in campus safety technology. In addition to Rave Guardian, colleges and universities also count on Rave Alert, the most reliable broadcast emergency notification solution on the market, and Rave EyeWitness, which allows students to confidentially text campus police about threats or safety issues. With more than 1,200 college and university customers, Rave's portfolio of advanced communications and notification systems protect more than 40 percent of the entire United States' higher education population.

IDScan.net signs Virginia rescue unit to use technology for deployment purposes

NEW ORLEANS (PRWEB) MAY 03, 2016

IDScan.net announced today that Virginia Task Force 1, Fairfax County’s International Urban Search and Rescue team, will adopt their state of the art ID scanning technology.

CEO of IDScan.net, Denis Petrov, said the winning combination of the WizzForms software and the CR100 passport scanner are demonstrating superior results for the group.

“Virginia Task Force 1 requires fast, precise and efficient ID scanning and data collection capabilities because they are in the business of saving lives. It’s paramount that their highly trained personnel deploy on time and that accurate passport information is stored. We know the importance of disaster relief first hand from what we experienced during Katrina," Petrov said.

“They are using our innovative technology to efficiently scan and validate member passport information. The solution conveniently verifies against the Task Force 1 database quickly and accurately,” he said.

Virginia Task Force 1 has some 200 specially trained career and volunteer fire and rescue personnel specializing in the rescue of victims from collapsed structures following catastrophic events. They are also recognized globally as a premier leader in training for catastrophic event mitigation, readiness, response and recovery techniques.

John Morrison, Virginia Task Force 1’s IT Manager, said the group will use the IDScan.net technology each time they deploy, both domestically and for international disasters.

“Our personnel travel internationally on short notice and each member needs to have a valid passport. IDScan.net’s technology provides a quick and effective way to verify the passport information of our disaster response specialists during member check-in as we deploy,” Mr. Morrison said.

“After extensive testing, we can see that the technology certainly will improve the accuracy of our information and this is paramount to our data collection process. The solution is rapid and the information we collect is 100% correct, which is great news for Virginia Task Force 1,” he said.

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