Security Guidance Matters ℠

Meet the Team: Arun Kothanath

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How did you arrive at Clango?

In 2004, I started the Security Practice at Integral Business Solutions.

Describe a recent engagement. What role did you play? How did the end result impact the client organization?

I helped a very large organization define a methodology for assessing threat for Industrial Control Systems. The end result was a simple and easy-to-use methodology based on a well-known process defined by Microsoft. The impact is that the client will be able to implement this methodology incrementally in their worldwide operations by reducing risks of cyber attacks on day-to-day things we use, such as elevators and escalators.

What are you known for professionally? What do you have a knack for?

I have been told by others that I have a fairly decent eye for “what’s coming.” I hope that it will be useful in setting the direction and strategy for Clango to stay ahead of market changes and differentiate us from our competitors. I also enjoy building teams of experts with unique ways of thinking, problem-solving abilities and—most importantly—the desire to help others.

What’s the one problem you are best at solving for your clients?

I like to believe that I project myself as a trusted partner for our clients. The biggest problem I claim to solve is providing our clients with a “level setting view” of their overall issues and create consensus among various groups.

What are you most passionate about professionally? What most excites you about your work and the contribution you can make?

I am passionate about security in a variety of areas. My work allows organizations to identify and help a lot of people who might otherwise end up as victims from various cyber crimes. I am passionate about educating others on combating fraud that could result in financial loss or other damages due to cyber espionage.

Where can we find you when you’re not working? What’s your favorite way to spend a weekend or a Sunday afternoon?

I am a techie buff. I may be building a new surveillance system using a Raspberry Pi or fixing things around my house. I also love long walks, hiking, and reading.

Any volunteer activities you’re crazy about?

I would love to get involved with educating children about basic security skills and the safe use of the internet and social media.

What would it be impossible for you to give up?

Anything I am passionate about, I am not prepared give up. That may be an idea, people, or anything.

What is your favorite restaurant and why?

The Landmark Chinese Hotpot restaurant in Vancouver, BC. They serve the most authentic hotpot experience outside of China.

What is your favorite or most interesting vacation spot?

That would be my garage with my carpentry projects.

Meet the Team: Helen Major

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Describe a recent engagement. What role did you play? How did the end result impact the client organization?

I recently completed my second engagement at a major healthcare service provider for their IAM program. My role was that of adviser to the IT security management and subject matter expert loaned to the finance department. The end result has provided the organization with three potential paths to implementing a centralized and comprehensive IAM program based on the funding received for 2016.

Is there a recent technical advancement that you are excited to deploy?

In pursuit of a “best place to start” for a recent client, I have looked closely at NetIQ Identity Manager, Identity Access Review, and Identity Vault. While Micro Systems recommends putting up Identity Manager first, I am convinced that for organizations that lack an entitlement catalogue or defined RBAC, putting Identity Access Review up as a temporary standalone will provide the best time to benefit for the customer.

What are you known for professionally? What do you have a knack for?

I am known professionally for building government messaging, document and content management, and identity management systems. I have a knack for getting funding and talented people to work with me.

Who have you worked with in the past? And what have you done for them?

I spent 20 years working in various capacities and departments for the State of Minnesota and the Minnesota State College and University system. I built the first email systems in the state for Public Safety, Human Services, and Education. I created a SAN for the Department of Education and cleaned up their email system. From there I went on to the state Mail*Hub, managing over 3,000 state, county, and quasi government systems using the state ISP.

I was assigned and delivered the first (and current) IAM solution for the Minnesota state portal and built a statewide IAM utility from scratch. I obtained the funding, identified and obtained the first customers and acted as project manager, product manager, technical team lead, and finally, operations manager for four years.

I led the development of a statewide document and content management solution based on IBM’s Filenet platform. I also led the statewide Identity and Access Management (IAM) solution implementation, from initial funding analysis through project management to end delivery. I functioned as both the technical team lead and product manager for the IAM effort. I also petitioned the state legislature for an amendment to the Minnesota Data Practices Act to allow the state to use SAN technology rather than the mandated optical disc storage. I succeeded and saved the state millions of dollars. My amendment request is the only one to have been successful to date.

I spent three years as the interim CIO for the Board of Public Defense. During my tenure I had oversight and responsibility for replacing the 15-year-old FoxPro 6 Law Office Data Base for managing cases with Gideon, a new, homegrown dotnet application. At the time I was hired, the new application had no budget left and nothing to deploy. I had it up and running with full function in seven months. It was deployed to all l0 Public Defense districts and to the Appellate office by the end of my tenure.

From there I moved to the department of Public Safety as the change and release manager for eCharging, electronic submission, and processing of criminal charges over the internet. I created a CRM for the product and increased the county participation from seven small counties to 35 counties within 10 months. I was able to include Anoka, Ramsey, Hennepin, and Dakota counties, the big four in the metro area.

Finally, I spent over two years as the IT manager for Hennepin Technical college in charge of operations, the data center, network, unified communication, and security.

What are you most passionate about professionally? What most excites you about your work and the contribution you can make?

I go by the 80/20 principle. I love 80 percent of what I do and tolerate the 20 percent I don’t love as the price of doing business. I am passionate about complex problems that involve technology and organizations. I truly love both individual research and working with and in teams to find solutions or ways to manage insoluble problems. One of my key contributions, according to years of 360o evaluations, is that I remove the obstacles for others and enable them to act. I have learned to take great satisfaction in the accomplishments of my team and associates. And by removing those barriers to action, I help make it possible for clients to move forward and flourish.

What are you passionate about personally? What do you really enjoy?

Learning new things and applying them to what I already know to come up with something new. I love Medieval poetry, Restoration plays, and modern literature. I also love new, disruptive technologies, political intrigue, and giving parties.

Where did you grow up and why aren’t you there now?

I grew up in Saint Paul and ran away to Los Angeles when I was 23. I came back here 34 years ago dragging my west coast husband with me. So I left and came back. I liked it in LA and I love it here.

Any volunteer activities you’re crazy about?

Homeless shelters. I do the homeless overflow chaperoning at Gloria Dei over Christmas. I meet so many wonderful people that it keeps me aware of how little difference there is between us all.

What is your favorite time of day and why?

Early morning. I raised children and ran a home daycare for ten years—watching the sunrise and having a quiet cup of coffee was a precious part of the day.

What is your favorite or most interesting vacation spot?

Catalina Island. It is amazing and I fantasize about living there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meet the Team: Steve Hawkins

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Steve Hawkins is the vice president of Security Technology Services at Clango. Steve is responsible for implementation of our identity and access management, privileged account management, and fraud prevention projects. He is also an adjunct professor at the University of Minnesota Technological Leadership Institute, where he teaches Cybersecurity Foundations.

How did you arrive at Clango? What path brought you here?

I helped to found Integral Business Solutions, which is one of the companies that has merged to become Clango.

What are you known for professionally? What do you have a knack for?

I’m great at digging into problems, simplifying them, and then explaining the solution across the technical and business teams. I’ve had clients say that they appreciate how I always stay positive, even when a project gets challenging.

How long have you been doing what you do?

More than 20 years.

Describe a recent engagement. What role did you play? How did the end result impact the client organization?

I assisted a client in deploying an anti-fraud control. The result saved them money and they learned more about how clients were interacting with their environment.

Is there a recent technical advancement that you are excited to deploy?

I’d like to work more with biometrics and integrating personal devices to corporate environments.

Where can we find you when you’re not working? What’s your favorite way to spend a weekend or a Sunday afternoon? Are there any volunteer activities you enjoy?

Riding my bike or watching my kids dance, play soccer, and swim. My family volunteers for Feed My Starving Children.

What is your favorite time of day and why?

Early morning or late night. I like the quiet, and it’s a good time for a smooth ride around the lakes.

Meet the Team: Duane Graham

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Duane Graham is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of DIT. We asked Duane about DIT’s acquisition of Clango and what his plans are for the company.

First of all, who is DIT and what do they do?

I started DIT in 1993 to provide software development and enterprise management. Today, the company provides a range of IT professional services and solutions to help government and large commercial organizations operate more efficiently and securely through optimizing physical, cyber, and human capital value. The company specializes in the delivery of IT solutions in the areas of Enterprise Asset Management (EAM), software application development and integration, cybersecurity, and IT services. DIT supports federal agencies (DoD and civilian), state and local governments, and commercial and non-profit enterprises. We’re headquartered in Arlington, VA, and have offices in Johnstown, PA, and now Minneapolis, MN.

Who is Clango?

Clango is a wholly-owned subsidiary of DIT. It was formed out of the acquisition and merger of the Clango Group and Integral Business Solutions.

Why the decision to acquire and merge these two companies?

Both of these companies achieved strong brand recognition in the information security world in MN and the Midwest. The strength and knowledge of these two companies positions DIT to more fully engage with clients across a broad spectrum of information security disciplines, from high-level IAM strategy to the integration of complex anti-fraud and application security solutions.

Why is information security so important?

Information security is not only front-page news, it’s a top area of concern of many of the nation’s leading CEOs. IAM as a discipline ensures that only authorized personnel have access to an organization’s sensitive data. As workforces continue to become globally dispersed and data privacy legislation aggressively evolves, it will be critical for organizations to have effective IAM programs in place to protect information within an ever-changing threat landscape.

There are a lot of security companies out there. What sets Clango apart?

We have some unique skills sets. Integral offered engineering and Clango Group provided advisory, so with the combination of the two we can support all of the customer’s cyber requirements.

Advisors make engineers better: typically, engineers are focused on installing a point solution and solving a single problem for a customer. Advisory means that we can take the 30,000-foot view of a customer and offer a more comprehensive perspective instead of a point solution.

At the same time, engineers make advisors better: advisors are solution-agnostic, but the more they know about advancement in particular point solutions, the more effectively they can work with a customer.

 

Welcome to Clango

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clango = sounding board (Latin)

At Clango we believe that sharing knowledge is paramount. We strive to stay abreast of important developments and innovations in the world of identity and access management and to create the best possible strategies to ensure our clients’ success.

We are excited to launch this blog as a place to share those insights and strategies with you. Our hope is that this blog will not only be your go-to source for the most reliable and relevant information about the industry, but that it will serve as a sounding board for you to test out your own ideas and get expert advice.

Every week, we’ll post helpful content like case histories, white papers, and informative interviews with trusted colleagues and partners. We’ll evaluate everything from the latest industry trends to software upgrades to discover what’s worth your time and money, and share those insights with you. We’ll even let you in on what we’ve found doesn’t work so you can avoid costly and time-consuming mistakes.

We’ll also keep you informed about events, classes, and workshops that will help you on your path. If we attend a conference and think there’s information that would be valuable to you, we’ll be sure to share it here.

In the next few weeks, we’ll focus on introducing you to our team. Clango is made up of people who have passion for what they do combined with many years of experience to help your company succeed.

If there are any topics that you’d like to see covered, please contact marketing@clango.com.

Introducing Clango

blog post photo2Clango Group and Integral Business Solutions are now Clango. Our team has a 15-year proven track record enabling Identity and Access Governance and Fraud Management solutions worldwide. Leveraging alliances with Oracle, RSA, Forge Rock, NetIQ and CyberArk we have deployed numerous IAM capabilities such as: user registration and lifecycle management, adaptive and federated authentication, privileged administration, and access governance. Our teams have addressed context-specific use cases across Finance, Healthcare, Higher Education and Government. Navigating the process of envisioning through solution deployment, we evolve information security frameworks to drive assurances that authorized identities have access to the right data at the right time.