Connecting state and local government leaders

For Smaller Cities, Intelligent Networks Offer a Solid Digital Foundation


Connecting state and local government leaders

Legacy networks are constraining when cities must meet connectivity demands, according to Verizon’s VP of SLED markets.

Cities need a clear architectural vision for setting up an intelligent network with many opting for a collaborative model when it comes to information technology and cybersecurity.

Lacking resources and expertise and strapped for cash, they can’t hope for large, perimeter-based solutions.

And legacy networks are constraining when cities must meet connectivity demands for everything from the mobile enablement of web apps to managing sensor data.

“If you attempt to secure an enterprise system through the proliferation of perimeter devices, it can be very heavy from an equipment perspective,” said Maggie Hallbach, Verizon state and local government / education markets vice president, during a virtual roundtable discussion Wednesday. “Many of our smaller municipalities are asking us for assistance with what I would characterize as minimal cost solutions.”

Intelligent networks should form the digital foundation of cities looking to ensure livability, sustainability and resilience because of their security flexibility, higher quality customer service and reliable connectivity, she added.

Such networks are collaboration drivers that form the nervous system of the enterprise and can be tailored to the vastly different services offered by a transportation department versus a health and human services department. They also prevent replication of data across multiple agencies, a security concern because cities often don’t know where the information resides until it’s compromised, Hallbach said.

Another trend Verizon has seen among its customers: security has become a key area of big data analytics the company is investing in because cities are recognizing that firewalls and dual-factor identification, alone, aren’t good enough.

The Basking Ridge, New Jersey-based telecommunications company is prioritizing analyzing data coming off networks and flagging abnormalities for security.

“It’s multilayer, and it’s behavioral,” Hallbach said.

Dave Nyczepir is a News Editor at Government Executive’s Route Fifty and is based in Washington, D.C.

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