Cisco Track to Address Next-Gen Networking and Security

The technology track sponsored tomorrow by Cisco Systems Inc. will address hot topics such as how to migrate from legacy to next-generation networks, how best to secure networks, and interoperability challenges and solutions.

The CTO Viewpoint: What Keeps Them Awake at Night? session first thing Tuesday morning will feature Keith Coker, CTO at Nuvox; Timothy Dunne, CTO at RCN Corp.; and Ciscos Mike Koons, senior director of U.S. service provider systems engineering, as the session leader.

Coker said his No. 1 concern these days is interoperability specifically, how to validate interoperability between equipment such as softswitches, session border controllers, ATAs and integrated access devices in the telephony environment. Another key focus for Coker is how to expand his existing operational support systems to support the next-generation network environment.

NuVox operates both legacy and next-generation networks today to support its small and medium business clientele. He also will address how to enable legacy OSSs to deliver customer self-fulfillment. Another key challenge for CTOs like Cox today, he said, is how to adapt from a telephony culture to the culture of managed services.

The Cisco-sponsored session on Securing the IP Network: The Service Provider Imperative will discuss how important it is to offer a secure network and how service providers can use that as a differentiator. Among the speakers on this panel are Mitch Ferro, senior director of IP and enhanced services product management at Broadwing; Bob Moore, vice president of IT at PAETEC Communications; and Randy Nicklas, vice president of engineering for XO Communications. Vic Northrup, vice president, U.S. Service Provider, Cisco Systems Inc., will act as the session leader.

Ferro of Broadwing notes that the Internet is a double-edged sword. While it provides great opportunities to enhance the efficiencies of businesses, there are security threats including viruses, spam and different types of attacks that can intrude and prevent legitimate users from accessing a Web site or other data. Theres a requirement to provide more security inherent in the connection that we provide the customer. At the same time, well see standard Internet access service, and heres a secure Internet service. A kind of clean pipe, is how we can talk about it, said Ferro.

The Future of Internet session, meanwhile, will forecast the next disruptive wave of Internet services, such as presence-based communications and mobility, integrated and rationalized communications. In addition to session leader Northrup of Cisco and Koons, speakers include Carl Drueckhammer, technology director at Syniverse, and Kirt Jorgenson, director of market management at Cisco.

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